A Graceful Response to Racism

ASU Fraternity Suspended after Offensive MLKDay Party

A recent story broke surrounding an “MLK Party” held by an Arizona State University fraternity. In summary, students arrived at the party dressed in “basketball jerseys, flashing gang signs and even drinking from watermelon cups.”

Why a Quarter Is Worth as Much as a Ten Dollar Bill

Investing in Parenting

It was the middle of July and I was trying to take in a baseball game with my 15-month-old son, Isaiah. If I lived in San Diego it wouldn’t be such a big deal, but July in Phoenix is miserable. Like, 113 degrees miserable.

From the moment we arrived to the moment we got home it was a struggle. Just battling the heat from the car to the stadium took nearly every ounce of energy (and hydration) I had. When we arrived at our seats, Isaiah didn’t want to sit for longer than an inning, so we walked around the stadium several times. Despite the struggles of the day, I would never take back that experience.

The Nine Day Report on Isaac


Thank you to those who have been praying for us and offering to help our family with anything we need. It is so encouraging to know that we are not alone and that Isaac is loved through your love to us!

Because so many have continued to ask for updates on how Isaac is doing, I’m taking time today to share his status. I’m not changing themes on my blog, just taking this opportunity to answer the many questions that have come our way.

Next week I will return to posting my thoughts and observations on leadership. Thanks for hanging in there with me during this transition.

Let the Update Begin

Isaac Michael is 9 days old! He continues to grow healthier and stronger every day. From the moment he was born, the nurses all said he is a model preemie. Not like en vogue, but rather, he is the best case scenario when it comes to a baby born at 34 weeks.

Climbing Out of Debt and Overcoming Shame


My favorite Friends episode is the Thanksgiving one with Brad Pitt. It’s worth a watch for many reasons. One of the story lines is Joey conquering his Everest: eating an entire turkey. After changing from his jeans which “have no give” and into maternity pants, or as he calls them “his eating pants” he finishes off the bird.

I overcame my Everest. Just like Joey’s turkey, it seemed as if it were impossible to conquer. Positive thinking is all good, but when you’re faced with what I was facing, it does little good.

In the spring of 2009 I became debt free conquering $60,000+ in debt accrued five years prior.

Welcoming Baby Isaac to the World

Isaac Michael Shrein

We had a due date of February 18, 2014 but found ourselves holding baby Isaac Michael on January 7th. Our little guy arrived six weeks early, much to our surprise.

At the beginning of January my dad and I were thinking about attending CES in Las Vegas on January 7th. Apparently CES doesn’t let nobodies like us in, so we stayed home. Looking back, I am glad CES wouldn’t let us in.

A Year of Determination


Weight. Job. Family. Money.

We all choose words that define what we hope to accomplish in the new year. Whether it is a formal “New Year’s Resolution” or a desire we contemplate internally, a new year provides a natural rhythm for personal growth.

My word for 2014 is determination. For me, an attitude of determination is what is necessary to fulfill all the roles I currently play in life.

Stop Beating Up on Christmas

There is no shortage on articles written about the excess of Christmas. Many suggest that gifts blind us from the true meaning of Christmas. Personally, I can’t escape this thought: can’t giving personalized and extravagant gifts co-exist with celebrating Christ’s birth?

At the first Christmas there were many gifts given. Joseph and Mary were given a free night at the inn. Though their stable was unclean and undesirable, it was a gift that was given freely. We then read the accounts of the wise men arriving and giving three extravagant gifts to Christ. Lastly, Christ himself, was a gift. So why do we beat up on giving gifts at Christmas?

A Confession of Sorts

duck dynasty

I have a confession to make…