Friday, February 3, 2012

Date Night {IN}: Family Planning

 When you are Type A personality and you are married to a fellow who is Type A personality AND a lawyer, you tend to have your documents in order.  When Matt goes out of town, he leaves his will and end of life documents on his bedside table so I don't have to hunt for them in case of an accident.  No kidding.

My husband also happens to be getting an LLM in entrepreneurial law which means he is crazy into contracts and business plans.  I'd totally make fun of him but you should see me geek out over the survey tool maker I'm using for my Ph.D. work.

We are the Kaufmans.  We are bringing nerdy back.

I have a point which I will get to .... now.

For Christmas I gave Matt 12 Sealed Dates for the year.  January's date was called "The Business of Being a Family".  Here's what the card said inside:

The Business of Being a Family

A successful family, like a successful business, needs a mission, a vision, and goals.

This month, we will put together a family business plan.

We will:
  • ·      Create a biblically based vision statement;
  • ·      Create a biblically based mission statement;
  • ·      Create goals on how to do faith-time as a family;
  • ·      Create parenting goals;
  • ·      Create rules;
  • ·      Create a “plan” to keep the family marriage-centered instead of kid centered; and
  • ·      Create a “bucket list” of 10 things we’d like to do as a family before our children are grown.

Before the date we each need to:
  • ·      Find 3-5 guiding scriptures for our family
  • ·      Write down 3 things you do well as a parent and 3 things I do well as a parent.
  • ·      Write down 3 things you need to improve on as a parent.
  • ·      Write down 3 things I need to improve on as a parent.

 During the date we will:
  • ·   Spend time talking seriously
  •      Spend time dreaming
  •      Spend time praying
  •      Spend time evaluating.

In the end, we will publish and post our family mission, vision, and goals.

Matt and I spent about three hours making brain webs and praying and dreaming.  Though this wasn't a physically intimate date, the daydreaming, the praying, the words of affirmation ... they all made this an incredibly intimate date on an emotional and spiritual level.  Though we haven't officially "published" our plan yet (because I'm still finding ideas on how to do this really officially/artistically), here is some of what we came up with.

VISION: The Kaufmans are builders.  Starting with a firm foundation in Christ, we will build disciplines of Godly people, including being fearlessly hopeful and generous.  We will build positive attitudes that reflect humility and gratitude.  We will build relationships that we passionately pursue and will be known as people who love.  We will build a legacy that reflects love and grace through our words and deeds.

MISSION: The Kaufmans will run the race with joy and will finish strong.  We will daily live a surrendered life.  We will push forward without looking back.   

  1. The Kaufmans will resolve conflict.  We will not ignore or hide from problems or conflict. We will talk openly, honestly, and respectfully.  We will seek peaceful resolutions. We will apologize.
  2. The Kaufmans will treat people with respect.  We will be polite and courteous.  We will think more highly of others than ourselves.  We will acknowledge the feelings of others and how our words/actions affect those around us.
  3. The Kaufmans will be purposeful with our actions.  The way we spend our time will reflect our values.  We will do what we say we are going to do.   We will be firm and consistent.  We will be honest and do work with integrity.
  4. The Kaufmans will not be blind followers of society.  We will not observe customs merely for the sake of tradition.  We will live radically different lives.  The Word, not the world with its temptations and pressures, will light our path.
  5. The Kaufmans will always try.  We will not say, "I can't."  We can and we will.  We will fail.  We will succeed. We will take risks. We will try.
  6. The Kaufmans will be thankful at all times.  We are not entitled to anything.  We will live grateful for what we have and will work hard for what we want.  As we were given grace freely, freely we will give grace.  
  7. The Kaufmans will share: our time, our talents, our dreams, our fears, our money, our possessions.  We will share.
  8. The Kaufmans will not have anything they cannot live without. There will be nothing that impedes our pursuit of Christ.
BUCKET LIST (my favorite part of the date!)
  1. Go to Disney World
  2. Go on a family rafting trip (ideally through the Grand Canyon)
  3. Do a family mission trip in a foreign country
  4. Summit a mountain together (mountain must be tall enough to have a registry)
  5. Do a radical service project for another family (our initial thought: buy a family a car)
  6. Serve in a soup kitchen together.
  7. Go one Christmas with NO presents.  Make memories instead.
  8. Have the kids plan a vacation to the destination of their choosing.
  9. Host a foreign exchange student.
  10. Go see all of the Wonders of the World together.


  1. Keeping the marriage centered on you and spouse and not the kids. That's so challenging!

  2. Small bits of content which are explained in details, helps me understand the topic, thank you!

    Family Planning in Oxnard, CA


{Reverse Psychology}
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(Did that reverse psychology work???)