Feb 052010

It is amazing to me how quickly life goes by. I know that there are 60 seconds in a minute and 60 minutes in an hour, but why does time go by in a blink of an eye? I know that there are 24 hours in a day and 365 days in a year, but why does time go by in a blink of an eye? It always seems like the bad days take forever but the good ones go by in a blink of an eye. I am one who keeps every picture my kids have ever taken. I was keeping pictures long before we put them on our cell phones and computers. I actually  have a storage tub or two at home filled with them. If I were to ever do a collage it would probably be the size of a football field. I love looking back on them every now and then. It still amazes me how it seems as if I just took them yesterday.

Last night I was reminded again how life goes by in a blink of an eye. My daughter Michaela attended her 8th grade Winter Dance. All of the girls dressed up as if it were the prom. They all looked so beautiful. The boys were styling as well but there is something about girls at this age that screams “watch out adulthood here I come”. As I watched my daughter smile and laugh I was again reminded that life goes by in a blink of an eye. Earlier yesterday I was reminiscing through some of Michaela’s old photos. There was Notre Dame cheerleader picture at three, the birthday party pictures at six, the class pictures from school  and the soccer pictures that seem to go on and on and on. I smiled as I thought back to what a beautiful little girl I was blessed to have. Watching her grow and transform into the beautiful young lady that she is becoming brought  a tear to my eye. Last night at the dance i  again realized how life goes by in a blink of an eye. The little girl that I have been taking photos of forever is now a thirteen year old teenager. She is 5’6″ tall and still growing. The boys smile at her more than she smiles at them. When God gave out pretty and heart Michaela was in the front of the line. I am so proud of her but I really wish that my blinks would slow down.

I know that we only have a short time to be with our kids. I know that it is our job to allow them to grow and then set them free. I just wish that it would not go by in a blink of an eye.

Jan 292010

As I sit here and write my weekly blog I have a cup of coffee in one hand, a Pepsi in the other and one eye open. I have been up since 4:00 am this morning and barely alive. I recently heard a country song with the lyric “You can sleep when you die” . In that case I want to die. There is good news and bad news as to why I have been up since 4:00 am. The bad news is that my kids have been sick this week.  The good news is that my kids have been sick this week. If I had my choice I would always have the kids get sick at the same time. This week my choice has been granted. I have had my days of one being sick one week and the other the next. All that this does is extend out the whole process. Personally I wish that they would both cough, sneeze and throw up at the exact same time. But since they are not Siamese twins this is not a reality. I feel bad for them, but better to get it over with than extend out the midnight calls to the infirmary.

As a single parent I am left to my own accord to take care of my kids. It is not easy but it has to be done. As I sat in my living room early this morning I reflected on how many other parents must be going through the exact same thing that I was? They say that the greatest job you could ever have is that of being a parent. I am not sure that I subscribed to that way of thinking at 4:00 am this morning. Nobody ever said that parenting would be easy but single parenting…..well it is what it is.

I know that by later tonight my kids will be feeling better and I will be able to get some sleep. Tomorrow will be a new day and we will all be refreshed, healthy and ready to go again. So for all of you parents who have yet to do your 4:00 am infirmary shift, I offer you two bits of advice. One, pray that all of your kids get sick on the same day and two, never forget “You can sleep when you die”. Continue reading »

Jan 222010

They say that practice makes perfect. Who ever said that was obviously not a parent. I have practiced at being a good parent ever since day one. I continue to practice at it each and every day. Last week I thought that I had finally figured it out and then my 13 year old teenage daughter reminded me that I have a long way to go. I am starting to think parenting is allot like golf. You will never win at it totally. Oh you may score well every once in awhile, but just when you start to think you’ve got  it figured out,  you slice it into the woods and have to take a penalty stroke. I have had my share of penalty strokes with the kids.

The problem with being a good parent is that your kids are constantly changing. Once you get the toddler stage down here comes the young child stage, then the pre-teen stage and finally the dreaded teenager stage. Looking back on the early stages, I now realize that the degree of difficulty changes with each stage. It must be Gods way of reminding you that practice doesn’t make perfect, but it will make you better. I am blessed to have my parents as examples. With five kids they had allot of practice. Looking back on it now I realized that they weren’t perfect, but at least they kept practicing. Actually with five kids maybe they should have stopped practicing having  us after two:) I am the oldest by the way! One thing that I know is that if you as a parent keep practicing, your children will be the beneficiary of it. I pray every night for those children who don’t have parents who practice. They are the ones that will never understand how to become a good parent themselves. They are the ones who will turn to the dark side when if their parents had just practiced more, they would have all seen the light.

You see when it comes to being a good parent I have learned that practice doesn’t make perfect. We are all going to make mistakes no matter how hard we practice at it. The trick is to accept that we aren’t perfect and continue to practice. Because just like golf, every once in awhile you have that great round that reminds you “I can do this”. I must do it! I will keep practicing. My children need me too….

Jan 182010

So I witnessed something yesterday that caused me to pull up a chapter from the mothballs—-I witnessed a divorced couple WITH kids go through a pretty horrible and certainly dysfunctional altercation.

It reminded me of the NUMBER 1 RULE FOR DIVORCED DADS (and moms). #1 RULE FOR DIVORCED DADS: Never utter a discouraging word about your children’s mom

If you can do this, then you’re a better man than me. Look – if I could take back every audible sigh, every roll of the eyes, every negatively inflected statement about my childrens’ mom I have ever made in front of the kids, I’d gladly do so. I made it a point, and I still do, to not bash their mom in front of the kids. Continue reading »

Nov 162009
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How a divorced dad parents Continue reading »
Nov 092009


 I’m taking a moment to introduce myself. 

My name is Patrick Talley and I am a dad of two and I’m from  a big ol’ goofy family down in Texas. 

I’m the happy dad to 2 great kiddos who are now teen-agers.  As teens, they both think it pretty ridiculous that I have written a book on parenting and that I have now been asked to start blogging about parenting. 

Upon completion of my first parenting book “DIVORCED DADS’ RULES FOR RAISING RELATIVELY STABLE KIDS”, my teen-age daughter asked me, “So what makes you think you have a right to put a book out on parenting?”

I quickly responded with, “Well, to begin with the simple fact that you feel comfortable enough to challenge me on the subject is one argument ‘for’ me.  And hey look around you.  Take a look at your peers.  Comparatively you and your brother are not that screwed up!” 

Issue resolved….I guess, she just went back to her dinner and later she and her brother continued to tease me about all of this.


I have had many trials and tribulations as a dad and have executed with excellence on many parenting occasions.  Continue reading »