This was originally posted by the Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub here.

Kindergarten. I can’t believe it’s almost here. I’ve written before about my son’s journey through preschool and how we’re so grateful that he was able to do that this year and how much he has grown. But it’s still is hard to believe that he is now old enough to go to Kindergarten and start elementary school in the Fall…where did the time go? Continue reading


Same Old, Same Old

This was originally posted by the Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub here.

Do you have a favorite routine in your day?  Perhaps it’s your morning coffee…or sitting down with a good book after a long day at work.  Maybe your favorite routine is just sitting back and doing nothing during the very few precious minutes you get during the day when somebody is not asking you for something.  Whatever your favorite routine is I’m sure that if something keeps you from enjoying that routine your whole day gets thrown off and it can be really hard to focus or enjoy much of anything during that day. Continue reading

So You Had A Bad Day

This was originally posted by the Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub here.

Have you had one of those days recently where you just feel down and nothing seems to cheer you up? Perhaps you spilled your coffee before you could even take a drink and then you stepped on that same toy that your child keeps leaving out in the same spot…no matter how many times you’ve asked them to put it away when they are done. It has happened to all of us and unfortunately it’s probably likely to happen again! Usually, we can just chalk this up to one bad day or a bad week perhaps…but we try to give ourselves some grace and start again with better hopes for the next day. Continue reading

Preschool Check-in

This was originally posted by the Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub here.

Back in the fall I wrote about my feelings and worries about sending my oldest off into the world of preschool. While my wife and I had a lot of mixed emotions at the time, we knew it was the right choice for him and that he was ready. I thought a few months in that now would be a good time to give an update on how things have gone so far and some observations we have noticed. Continue reading

Parenting Educator Recognition

Late in the fall I had the privilege of reading this in an email:

  • Hello Michael,

  • Thank you for submitting an application to the OPEC Recognition System! We are pleased to announce that you have successfully achieved the requirements of education, training, and professional experience to receive recognition as a Parenting Educator 1 in the OPEC Recognition System.

Continue reading

A New Passion

There are so many ways that I was affected and inspired by my grandpa.  One thing that I enjoy that I know is all about him is my love for products and trinkets made of wood.  My grandpa loved to work with wood, and although he was always self-deprecating and often called his work “junk”…our whole family loved his creations and we all have multiple gifts from him still decorating our shelves and homes.  From dressers and aquarium stands to pens, tops and cups of all shapes and sizes he loved to tinker and create these pieces of art from all different types of wood.  My eye is drawn to wood-crafted decorations and utensils wherever I go, especially if they remind me of pieces that I think fit my grandpa’s style. Continue reading

Celebrating Ourselves

This was originally posted by the Marion & Polk Early Learning Hub here.

It seems like as one year wraps up and another begins there is a lot of time spent looking back and reflecting on the year that was. Unfortunately, I think a lot of the time we focus on the things that didn’t work out or didn’t go as we planned. Perhaps our first thoughts and memories are of the challenging things that happened or the mistakes that we made. While it’s good to reflect on our circumstances and our shortcomings to try and keep the same things from happening again, I encourage you at the end of this year to think about something else as well…to focus on the positive things that happened to you and your family…and even better…to think about the awesome things that you did to help your children. Continue reading