When I grow up, I want to be a grandpa!” announced our 3-year-old Daniel in a recent conversation. Though his goal for life seemed a bit unusual at this age, it was easy to understand his choice. After all, in Daniel’s eyes a grandpa was the best kind of person to be-unhurried, attentive, strong, generous, playful, knowledgeable . . .
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If you are a parent, then you are probably already familiar with the impact of children on your personal life. Even in the most functional families, parents who juggle rearing energetic children with careers and other commitments often tell of feeling burned out. Maybe your personal experience with burnout began the week after you brought your newborn home from the hospital and she got her days and nights mixed up. Perhaps it started the day your employer informed you that because of company downsizing, your job was history, and the pediatrician informed you the same day that your child needed his tonsils out soon.
Whatever the monumental interruptions are that you face juggling kids, career, and other responsibilities, I want you to remember one necessity of life: be kind to yourself.
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A young woman named Cynthia vividly recalls one of the high points in her life. It took place when she was 12 years old. Her father promised to take her with him on a business trip to San Francisco. For months the two of them talked about the trip.
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Asthma, for all the problems it causes, is a readily controllable condition, provided children take their medications, limit exposure to allergens, and visit their doctors regularly. Nonetheless, Asthma Action America—an education organization composed of 21 health groups including the American Lung Association—reports that more than half of all asthmatic children experienced a severe attack in the past year, and 27 percent feared they were dying.
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I have to admit I was blessed with a green thumb (inherited from my father who for as long as I can remember has been a landscaper). Growing up in Illinois my dad owned his own landscaping company, and although I really don’t know much about flowers or plants, somehow in my presence they grow. Also, even when they appear to be dying, I can revive them back to health.
However, I don’t necessarily enjoy gardening in any way, shape, or form. Getting my hands dirty with mother earth isn’t my idea of fun. I don’t like dirt, especially under my nails, and I don’t like what lives in the dirt either (no creepy, crawly insects for me)!
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