Airdrie Children’s Festival

I love children. My own mostly and mostly because I have to…


Just kidding, but we know each other enough to know that that’s the sort of thing I say there.


As I’m writing this I’m sitting in Sorso with a wee gaffer who’s been dragged by mother out for coffee with the ladies who has been grinning impishly over the back of the bench seat at me. Sometimes I make a face at him. We’re fascinated by each other. 


Kids are so fun. I think the best thing I ever did was Grow Down. 


I’m the oldest and always felt like a little adult. The buck stopped with me and I had a little brother to take care of. 


But when I had my girls my wife noticed an alarming change come over me, I become more child-like. It’s not that I have less responsibility but I decided to have more fun in the middle of day to day life. 


I can stop in the middle of a hard conversation and have a laugh about something I’ve messed up. I can walk past Neela making herself coffee in the morning (she’s 10 and the last of four so don’t judge me) and be like “Neela! What exactly are you doin!!??” With a big smile on my face. 


I love kids. I love their innocence. I love that they know how to depend on people. I love that the weight of the world isn’t on them yet. 


In a recent group we’re leading called Further Faster (about leadership) I said “We are all conduits. We are all an extension of someone else’s good graces and authority. We need to be able to relax.” 


It sounds childish but it’s not, it’s child-LIKE. There’s a difference. 


I was not afraid of bad things happening as a child but not because I had no fear to overcome, I had an overdose but I became unafraid in spite of it. 


Then I grew up and thought the world depended on me. In some ways it’s true, but in other ways it’s a stressful illusion. 


Of what value is hard work if I personally lose the ability to be at peace in the process.


When I can afford ____, then I’ll be happy. When I have ____ career then I’ll have arrived. When I ___ then ____. 


Sadly the bar always keeps moving, so I decided to be responsibly carefree. 


I am not careless or lazy, just carefree. I sweat what I need to, but I’m not afraid of the rest because I don’t control it. I don’t have to to be happy anymore.


I recently sat down with Pete Lewis from which is happening June 1 and 2 at Nose Creek Park and will be a.m.a.z.i.n.g! Most people planning events sit down with you and have the approach “What do YOU want us to be?” Aka PLEASE HELP US!!


Not Pete. Pete knows what he wants and I like that. 


We represented Venue and love helping our City and were asking how to get involved. And big mean Pete actually was not into all our suggestions (I can’t even remember what they were. Also I’m nearly impossible to offend so don’t cry for me Argentina). 


Pete led in with the Airdrie Children’s Festival filter:


“Our goal is to create a curiosity, ignite a passion, break down a barrier, remove a fear…all by giving our children the chance to see and do things they may not otherwise.


I looked across the table and was impressed. 


“Here’s what we do and here’s what we don’t” do might be another way to say it? 


Here’s what we value and here’s what we don’t value?


I love it! Here’s a filter for every single thing that takes place there.


So Venue will try to help and you should maybe consider it too! 


One of the reasons I’m purposely not living afraid anymore is that I experienced an extreme amount of fear in my early childhood in spite of my parents heroic effort to help. 


When Pete said “remove a fear” I was in. I hate fear. I’d rather get sick and die than live afraid of getting sick and die. Conquer fear. Beat it. Face it. Walk through it. Let it change you but don’t let it bury you. And when you beat it help someone else beat it. 


Children without fear? Yeah let’s do it. 


I realized in that moment he understood how to create something. 


Pete Lewis has a WHY. 


We try to motivate our employees but don’t give them a why. We try and get our kids to clean their rooms without a WHY? (“If you don’t clean your rooms I’ll tell your future husbands and they’ll marry someone else who doesn’t have so much crap!”) Easy mom!:)


This is why I think I’m a great dad btw, I make funny moments out of clean-your-room moments. I figure if you work you might as well have fun? 


We recently flew in late from out of the country and my girls had Welcome Back signs plastered everywhere with the common theme of “From your favourite kid” on at least half of them. I find this ridiculously funny because they’re so competitive and I have no idea where they get that from?! (Cough cough)


It’s mostly funny because they all secretly think they are. I’ll wait for those moments alone and whisper “I like you best”, then their eyes light up and they smirk at their sisters across the room who are smirking back because I told them the same thing. 


They’re not afraid in the slightest that I like one of them more than the others because they think they’re the one. 


Overcoming fear makes you feel like you’re the one, so good on ya Pete! Let’s rock the Airdrie Children’s Festival!! 


Let’s make kids too curious and passionate to be afraid.


We’re in!

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