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while visiting with my friend in utah, sister-keri, back in february, we had many discussions about all sorts of things. now that we were both parents and doing that whole adult thing, some of these dealt with parenting and one of the more interesting touched on family mantras. the family she grew up in struck me as being very happy, very healthy so i asked if there was an over-riding message that was given to the children (her and her siblings) while growing up. there was...

associate with winners.

i pondered this. associate with winners. sounds nice. certainly has positive and far-reaching implications while staying simple. this is the sort of thing that marks a good family mantra. keri asked if marty and i had yet adopted one. yes, but just one. she asked what it was ...

nothing permanent.

keri inquired. i explained that our goal is to deliver our children to society and adulthood free of hampering baggage which may curb or limit their options and thus future. like a tattoo across their forehead that states something pithy like 'conquer' or 'dominate' (we are talking about bella here). or another example may be it would be nice if our children could enter college without worrying about securing accommodations for their very own three year old child. and a criminal record, well that just seems like ten kinds of bad. but those are the sorts of permanent things walt and i have in mind when saying, nothing permanent. and conversely it is to say that we won't, or at least try not to, sweat momentary things such as hairstyles, clothing choices or an infatuation with bruce willis films, although one could argue the last item possesses deep-rooted ramifications.

after presenting our thoughts, keri and i made a loogi-on-palm handshake exchange, agreeing to adopt each others family mantra. i had not previously considered this sort of cooperative but in intuiting the challenges ahead i'm thinking communing with families you admire and respect holds a lot of value and potential. not to mention, being a type of ideology exchange that seems woefully dismissed in our village-light communities.

so, did your family preach a message you feel would be a good contender for the mix? if so, i'd be interested in hearing about it.

APR2006

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