Today is my first Father’s Day as a father. Naturally the only thing my baby gave me was a hug, since she doesn’t have any money to buy me a card. I’ll take hugs for the time being. My wife admitted to me that she forgot to get a card for her dad, but I reminded her that she’s taking him to dinner, and pointed out that men generally prefer such things to cards. Still, I made sure to mail a card to my dad this week. I bought it days in advance, but it wasn’t until Friday that I finally mailed it. I sent it via Express Mail, along with a DVD of photos and videos of our baby. It cost a whopping $14 to mail them, but by golly it got there in one day. Now that’s service.

Yesterday we finally began to make progress with our kitchen remodeling. We packed up everything in the cabinets and I removed the doors and drawers. Later I’ll start tearing down the cabinets. In a week, the plumbers will be here to replace the old galvanized pipes, so I have to have the kitchen demolished by then. I’m having a hard time picturing the new kitchen in my mind, but I know it’s going to be wonderful. I’ve gotten so tired of the old cabinets, with the doors that don’t really close, and the drawers that stick. It doesn’t help that everything (including the hinges) has been painted over about five times. It’s quite a mess just taking the doors and hardware down, with paint chips falling all over the place. What a difference it will be to see cabinets with a beautiful, natural wood finish. Looking forward to that, and the new porcelain flooring, is what helps me stay focused.

Regarding baby’s first word, “mama” (sounds more like “mum-mum”), she is clearly using it when she wants something to do with mommy. Maybe she’s hungry, or tired, or in need of comfort, but she is definitely referring to mommy when she says that word. It’s truly amazing to see a child grow from a newborn that can’t do much of anything, to a small person that has a demonstrable personality, and can communicate and move about. Every day is a blessing, and I cherish all the time I have with her.

Not being a Christian, but married to a Christian woman, we have a compromise in which we go to church every other week. This week Pastor Jason started a series on men’s roles. It’s quite fascinating, so much so that I’m thinking we should come every week for the next few months to hear each part of the series. That is, in my mind, the infectious nature of religion. At first it’s a chore that I put up with to make my wife happy, but it’s now becoming a part of my life, and this week has actually turned into an educational experience for me. I very much want to know what qualities make for a good man (and husband, and father). Interestingly, it’s not at all like the model that society dictates—strong, stoic, assertive, self-sufficient. I imagine that this is how converts are won over, not by forcefully pushing you in a particular direction, but by drawing you in, demonstrating what it means to be a Christian.