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Recently I attended another Mormon temple wedding.  This one was my other brother’s wedding.

I wrote a more detailed account of what happens inside a Mormon temple during the wedding ceremony last month, so I won’t get into specific details in this article.

For now, I will highlight the advice the temple sealer said to the young couple.

Four Cornerstones for a Successful Marriage

1. Family Prayer

2. Scripture Study

3. Having a weekly Family Night

4. Regular Temple Attendance

 

We’ve all heard the catchy phrase, the “family that prays together stays together“.  According to some research, prayer coupled with church attendance helped reduce divorce rates for couples.

The other similar phrase I’ve heard over the years is that the “family that plays together stays together“.  There is also research that substantiates this comment.  Holding a weekly family night is an excellent way to have an organized and set time to play with the family.  I know that it is hard sometimes to find time to play with my kids, but family night is a great time to play with the kids.  I’ve had some very memorable moments and am grateful for the family nights we’ve had doing projects, singing songs, playing games, and making treats.

Although this research supports families specifically, I would say that couples who hold regular date nights and take time to pray together experience greater satisfaction as well.

I’d be interested in hearing your experience and ideas to make a successful marriage work.  Feel free to leave comments.

This Father’s Day I thought I would share my feelings of being a father with young children.  We have a little girl, 3 1/2 years old, who is beautiful, smart, funny, and can have an attitude when she’s tired or hungry (takes after her dad!).  We also have a little 9 month old boy.  He has such a great personality that lights up the room and is full of energy.  He also can get a bit feisty when not well fed (again, like his Dad).

Some highlights this year were obviously my son being born.  At first, I wasn’t sure if I could love another child like I loved my daughter.  In fact, I felt guilty after he was born because I didn’t cry and wasn’t as emotional as I was when she was born.  However, as the year has gone on, I love “Buddy” just as much as I love “Babes”.  He is now crawling all over the place and he loves to have me get a little rough with him by wrestling and throwing him around.  His eyes light up and he giggles a cute little baby giggle.  He also has learned how to wave.  It’s cute watching him wave and smile and crawl over to me when I see him.

Dad and “Buddy”

“Babes” and I did a lot of fun things throughout the year.  Being 3 years old, she is full of energy and it is sometimes hard for me to keep up with her.

One of the major highlights for both of us was the Daddy/Daughter date we went on earlier this year.  She and I had tons of fun dressing up like it was prom and going to the dance.  We were having so much fun, we even got our pictures in the paper!

Babes and Dad at Daddy/Daughter dance

Needless to say, I am a very blessed person to have two healthy and beautiful children who call me Dad.  I hope I live up to that title throughout my life because I personally feel it is one of the most sacred callings a man can have.

That being said, I thought it would be fun to share my top 20 list of things I like to do with my kids….so (drum roll please) here it is:

20 Things I love to do as a Father with my Young Children

  1. Carry kids on my shoulders
  2. Wrestle with them
  3. Put them in a blanket and throw them around onto the bed
  4. Color pictures and receive pictures from them they’ve drawn or colored
  5. Tell them stories from the farm when I was growing up
  6. Watch them play and get along with each other
  7. See their smiles when I enter the room
  8. Watch them learn and grow
  9. Witness their innocence
  10. Do “tricks” with them by flipping them around
  11. Read books before bedtime
  12. Watch them splash and play in the bathtub
  13. Dance with them
  14. Brush my daughter’s hair and give her manicures
  15. Tickle them
  16. Play my guitar and watch them sing and dance (my 9 month old son has a killer voice!)
  17. Sing with them
  18. Cuddle with them until they fall asleep
  19. Watch them sleep
  20. Pray for them while they are sleeping

Today in church an older father, who happens to be a grandfather got up and shared a great experience that helped me as a young father.  Since this month we celebrate our fathers, I thought it was appropriate to share this.

The grandfather explained that he was working on building a deck out by his shed in his backyard when his 3 young grand daughters came over.  They are all grade school age and full of energy.  He said he completely enjoyed his experience with them as they wanted to “help” him build.  He didn’t get 1/3 of the project done because the kids were playing in the dirt, save the worms from getting chopped by the shovel, nails were scattered on many occasions.  In spite of all this, he didn’t get angry or annoyed.  Rather, he enjoyed the fact that his grandkids were with him.

I thought of myself as a young father.  It is easy for me to get so focused on a project that sometimes when my kids interrupt me, I am easily annoyed.  I know I can personally learn from this experienced father to focus on what is important.  What is important are the relationships we have with others, not the relationships we have with our things.

Jesus taught that if we are His disciples, we’ll have love for others.  Surely this example is one of how we can love others as a father.

Cleanse your Soul with Grace for Grace “Spiritual SOAP”

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