The Camera

It adds ten pounds, you know. And apparently bags under the eyes as well. Still, the piece that aired last Wednesday night on WVLT here in Knoxville turned out pretty good. Some folks asked me to post it here, so I’ve embedded it below. Click play to see the carnage as well as to hear about the contest I’m trying to win for charity.

Even if you’ve already voted for me, I hope you’ll click on the World’s Greatest Dad icon which appears below the video and do so again. (You’re allowed to vote once every twenty-four hours.) I’m dropping like a stone, so I could really use your help.

Again, if I win, I’ll donate the entire $2,000 first prize to ChildHelp, a fantastic organization which benefits the victims of child abuse and neglect. If you’re so inclined, you can help ChildHelp win that two grand by sharing this post with your network via one of the social media icon buttons which appear directly below the contest icon.


I’m on TV Tonight

Ktown peeps — please tune in to the WVLT 6 o’clock news tonight. At, um, 6 o’clock.

Why? Because my brood and I will be featured during one of the segments. You see, the one and only Michele Silva was kind enough to stop by mi casa earlier today. But not only that. She was also brave enough to stay! For like an entire, or something. I’m happy to report that she survived the encounter without sustaining even so much as a scratch.

Her cameraman, however, is rumored to have suffered a broken pinkie toe during a bizarre hit-and-run encounter with Monster, who accidentally ran over Silva’s sidekick while hauling ass on his scooter through our (furniture-less) living room. (Okay, that last bit was bogus, but it easily could have happened. Right, Nate?)

But seriously — watch it if you can. Michele said the segment turned out really well. We talked about all kinds of things including my book and “the video” the “Greatest Dad in the World” contest.

I want to repeat one thing loud and clear. I don’t even think I’m the greatest dad on my street, much less the greatest dad in the world, but I do hope I win. Because if I do, I’m donating the entire $2,000 first prize to, a leading national non-profit which benefits the victims of child abuse and neglect.

By clicking on the icon below, then clicking on “vote,” you’ll help me make that donation a reality. And, remember, you can one time EVERY SINGLE DAY! Currently, I’m in second place — but don’t give up on me! I have a feeling I’m gonna pull it out.

Mystery New Year's Goal–Childhelp

Recently I blogged about my New Year’s goals. (I don’t make resolutions. They sound too dire…) I hope to become a better husband to Lovie and a better dad to Pookie, A, B, and C. I also hope to become a better Christian and in turn, a better man. I ended the post by referring to a mystery goal–one that readers would “hear about soon.”

Many of you know that I’ve written a parenting memoir called Tales from the Trips. What most of you don’t know is that I plan on donating thirty percent of the net proceeds from the sale of my book to charity, more specifically to an incredible organization called Childhelp.

And that’s my mystery New Year’s goal–to help raise as much money and awareness for Childhelp as possible.

All you have to do to assist is buy my book! Tales from the Trips will be officially released in April (National Child Abuse Prevention month) and available through However, a limited number of pre-release editions can be purchased directly from the publisher later this month. (Buying direct from the publisher means a bigger donation to Childhelp!) Please send me an email at if you’d like to be notified as soon as I have them in hand. The cost of the book is $14.95 plus tax, shipping, and handling. If you’ve already signed up, don’t worry! I’ve got you down.

So who is Childhelp, and what, exactly, do they do? Childhelp® was founded in 1959 by Sara O’Meara and Yvonne Fedderson, and has become a leading national non-profit organization dedicated to helping victims of child abuse and neglect.  Childhelp’s approach focuses on prevention, intervention and treatment. They have a National Child Abuse Hotline (1-800-4-A-CHILD) which fields calls twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week, in addition to having a physical presence in many communities across the country.

Here are some of the programs they offer in those communities.


A child abuse prevention and education program within elementary schools which reaches over 450,000 annually.

Residential treatment facilities (Villages):

Entities which provide specialized, comprehensive care for severely abused children. In addition to psychotherapy, counseling, medical care, and on-site schools, the programs also include art, animal-assisted, music and recreational therapy to help heal the heart, soul, and body of each child in our care.

Therapeutic Group Homes:

Entities which provide a nurturing refuge for abused and neglected children until they can be placed in foster care, with adoptive parents or returned to their families, as determined by the courts.

Therapeutic Foster Care

Entities which provide recruitment, training and certification for foster families with access to 24 hour professional counseling and support.

Children’s Advocacy Centers

A coalition of law enforcement, prosecution, social service agencies, medical professionals, and crisis counselors working together to utilize a highly effective, one-stop approach to the investigation of child abuse. The concept of the Children’s Advocacy Center is also available within a mobile unit to provide services for abused children in remote areas.

I have seen firsthand the amazing good that Childhelp has done in my community of Knoxville, TN, where we are lucky enough to have a Child Advocacy Center as well as a Foster Care program. In 2008 alone, Childhelp touched the lives of over 1,300 children, up 250% from 2000. Their impact will do nothing but continue to grow, and this year, I hope to be a small part of that growth.

To keep up to date on the latest developments, please visit me here or at the Tales from the Trips website. I’ll make sure to pass along more details as they develop.

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