Friday, November 4, 2011


When I was pregnant, a friend of mine said, "The best complement that I can be given as a parent is that my child is empathetic." Her statement hit me like a lightening bolt because someone who is empathetic is a good friend, has a charitable heart and a good steward of this world. Who wouldn't want to be called empathetic or better yet have their child exhibit that trait? I loved her statement and have carried it in my heart since then. 

Flash forward five and three quarter years (as my daughter would say). Last Tuesday started out great! It was my turn to pick up from school four of the cutest kindergarteners in the whole world, bring them back to our house to play for an hour and then take them to dance class. Right before I was walking out the door to get my ladies, I got an email from the school councilor saying that my daughter had been chosen to be knighted for exhibiting the virtue of tolerance. There was going to be a school assembly, and I needed to RSVP. I had no idea what that meant, but I quickly responded that we would be there and ran out the door.

The girls and I had so much fun! I even got them to dance class five minutes early (MAJOR ACCOMPLISHMENT!). As I was sitting there watching my daughter and her friends play, dance and be beautiful, carefree butterflies, I took a moment to reflect on the email that I have just received. I made a mental note to find out more information about what her honor really meant. Then, the unthinkable happend. My daughter slipped and knocked out her two front teeth. Mom panic needs to be its own post, but let's just say however you think that you will react to an accident, you will probably do the opposite.

An emergency trip to the dentist, consultation with the pediatrician, chocolate/vanilla swirl ice cream and trip to the toy store later, she was good as new minus two teeth, of course. What a day it had been!

So here's the scoop on her award. It's a program sponsored by the Rotary Club. It's called EarlyAct FirstKight Character Education Program. The Rotary Club goes into the school with real Knights. They put on a sword fight for the kids (apparently, it's the coolest thing... EVER). Then they tell stories about Knights that exhibit chivalry. In a nut shell, they are trying to make chivalry cool again! The Rotary Club president said that in schools where this program has been implemented, test scores have gone up, discipline problems have gone down and the students have a more positive view on school. They end the program with the 4 Way Test...

4 Way Test of the things we think, say or do
1. Is it the TRUTH?
2. Is it FAIR to all concerned?
4. Will it be BENEFICIAL to all concerned?

Teachers and the school councilor then reinforce the 4 Way Test by using it in everyday situations in the classroom or the playground, etc.

So, my daughter was chosen by her teacher to be Knighted. Her grandparents, my husband and I were also honored onstage because the program teaches that the 4 Way Test must begin at home. Her teacher also read why she chose her to be Knighted. Here's what she said, "From the beginning of school, she has demonstrated the characteristics of tolerance in many different ways. She has been very kind, loyal and accepting towards all of her peers. She has shown respect and patience in the classroom, playground and other school settings. With the many choices we are faced with throughout the day, she is always thinking about the 4 Way Test and always makes the right choices."

I thought my proudest moment in my life was getting my Aggie Ring. Nope! It's seeing my daughter recognized for her beautiful heart.


Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Honk if You Love

I had this great idea to help promote by adding our name to the back window on my car. But I got more than what I expected. I never know what is going to happen now when I’m driving around, minding my own business, trying to get too many errands done in not enough time.   

The first time it happened, I didn’t make the connection. I had just had the back window done.  I was flying down the highway and a car pulled up next to me and was pacing me at 65 (or 70-ish) miles per hour. Now, the last time this happened to me was about 5 years ago. And I ended up having to call the police because a crazy man in a white van held up a center fold spread of some nasty pornographic magazine to show me. That still creeps me out. But anyway, back to my story …  a lady was driving and honked and honked and when I looked over at her she gave me a thumbs with a big bright smile. I thought, “ That’s kind of strange”.  But then I quickly figured it out. She liked the BarkingWife name or idea or maybe she was already using our service. It was a great feeling; having a random person honk and smile at me. Now this happens all the time to me as I’m driving around the city.

On the other hand, one day I was in drive through line at Chic-fil-A and a man walking to his car said to me, “I’m not gonna tell my wife about BarkingWife cause she barks enough at me already."  However, most of the time I get those knowing smiles from men and a chuckle when they see my back window. 

So now I want “Honk if You’re a” bumper stickers to give away so you and everyone else can feel the love too!