“Imagine Me”

Sadly, I had to deal rather ruthlessly with a co worker today who swore that one of his kids was destined to be nothing more than white trash. I really hate dealing with stupidity when I’m off. My Christmas mailing list keeps getting shorter all the time.

Every time I hear a HP say a kid is heading for jail or is doomed to be a molester or even dead, I want to knock them upside the head. It may be true you can’t save every one of the kids, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try.Keep speaking evil to a kid and they will meet those expectations, and exceed them.

Imagine that kid you think is destined to be a punk in prison will instead be minister. Try thinking of that kid who always steals stuff as someone that will be a successful and honest businessman. Try telling your girls they are special and you love them no matter what they do. They would have a greater chance of getting a degree than ending up repeating their family history.

I don’t know why some people who become House Parents give up and refuse to see their kids as something beautiful and special, a piece of the creator himself. What chance will they have if no one can imagine them being something more? Isn’t that the reason we do what we do?

I get frustrated like everyone else. There are and have been times I have questioned if the child we were dealing with could possibly be the Anti-Christ, but that kinda goes with the territory of child care. What I refuse to do is write a kid off. No one on this planet is past redemption, not one. I can not call myself a Christian and then turn around and tell others a certain kid is hopeless. That aint how it works folks. This world has written me off more times than I care to recall, yet Christ has continued to imagine me as something else. And I try to live up to that expectation the best I can.

There is more to being a HP than baby sitting. It is a call to serve and to love the unloved. We are Christs representatives to the forgotten and abandoned. The fact that little Johny will spit in your food and sneak a cigarette every time your not looking is not an excuse to with hold your love from him. You imagine that kid being greatness, never quit on him. Even when he quits on himself and the rest of the world tells him he is nothing, you have to be there for him. Hasn’t God done the same for all of us? -Launch

The Belt

My Battle Gear

I catch a lot of flak from the boys about what I call my super HP belt. They say I’m a cross between Batman and a fat Inspector Gadget. Personally I believe I’m more of a Macgyver type of guy, possibly even better looking (I don’t know why my wife always laughs hysterically when I say that). She just shakes her head and goes about her duties knowing it’s futile to even try and talk some sense into me.

The problem is I love gadgets. Actually I love efficiency and being prepared. That is how the “Belt” has developed over the years.

 I wear a two inch wide black leather belt. I thought a white one would look better, but my wife refused to be seen with me and told me that my “Bee Gees” record collection was all she was going to tolerate from the seventies.

Here is my basic combat load I strap on before entering the cottage along with a brief explanation;

1. Retractable key ring. (I lost my keys HOURLY before busting old school custodial style).

2. Blackberry Cell phone. (I get all my emails immediately, my wife is always able to beep the walkie talkie and get me back on task and I can read the news/ HP network when I have a few moments in the day- usually alone in the restroom).

3. Chain Wallet. (Not only does it look Uber cool, I NEVER lose my wallet anymore).

4. Zippo Lighter in a leather case. (We burn lots of incense in the house. Anyone that has a house full of boys will understand. I also BBQ a lot and I take the boys camping very often. I also like having the power of fire at my disposal).

5. SOG multi tool pliers. (I really got tired of searching for a screw driver every time I had to tighten a screw. My wife got tired of me using all the butter knives for heavy construction purposes. We both can agree this is one tool that has been very cool. Works for every HP task, from tightening a bolt to ripping out loose baby teeth)

6. Clip on six inch folding knife. (I like to cut open cereal bags very dramatically).

That is the belt.

Now all of that does weigh a few pounds and my complete lack of a butt and bulging pot belly caused me to constantly be pulling my drawers up, so I have the Dickie Suspenders attached. 

Even I have some sense of style. I cover all my tools with a leather vest I wear all the time so I don’t look quite so nerdy. I also have a pen protector but that is whole other blog.

All of this may seem over the top, but it simplifies my life and gives the tools I need at my disposal in an instant. And that is worth the price of looking like an idiot. -Launch