Tuesday, October 21, 2008

THE BERRYTRIBE DECREE

Well, I mentioned before that this whole adoption thing has caused us to have to visit and revisit some core level realities of our family.

Pivotal in this process has been the reading of a new book by Patrick Lencioni called the 3 Big Questions for a Frantic Family. I don't know that I like describing our family as frantic... but if the shoe fits... I guess I have to put it on. Regardless of your comfort level with the title, I highly recommend this book- especially to those of you with young kids- though he does show how this process fits families of all shapes and sizes.

The basic premise of the book is that as a business author, Lencioni helps businesses run efficiently and achieve their objectives intentionally. However, while he believes that the family is the most important organization on the planet, he found he rarely applies these basic business practices to his home life. So, the phrase, "If we ran my company like we ran this home, we'd be out of business" becomes the rally cry of this "leadership fable" style book he wrote.

Here are his 3 BIG QUESTIONS and the answers Shannon and I have come to for them:

#1. WHAT MAKES YOUR FAMILY UNIQUE?

THE BERRYTRIBE is an interracial family with 5 children. We strive to keep our faith in God in the center of our lives and to spend quality time together. We place a high value on personal responsibility, hard work, and integrity. We are active in our local schools, enjoy camping and day activities together, and intentionally serve Jesus' church- both locally and globally.

OUR BASIC FAMILY OBJECTIVES:
  • stay physically and spiritually healthy.
  • continue both Dad's and the children's education.
  • keep our finances in a place where they serve us in stead of us serving them.
  • take the necessary steps to keep our marriage healthy and strong.

#2. WHAT IS YOUR FAMILY'S TOP PRIORITY- RALLYING CRY- RIGHT NOW?

THE BERRYTRIBE is focused on Adopting and Assimilating Becky and Billy into our family.

(the book recommends a goal that is 2-3 months long. Ours is more like 4-6 months of stuff, so we broke it down in more manageable chunks. We could have made each one it's own rallying cry, but we chose this route instead)

DEFINING OBJECTIVES BY THANKSGIVING 2008:
  • Define and refine our family budget
  • Raise/generate 75% of the funds it will take to accomplish our immediate needs for adoption
  • Sell extra items in Garage sale and over e-bay/craigs list.
  • Complete our international home study.
  • Buy plane tickets.
  • Get Becky and Billy registered and ready for entry into the pre-k class at RSD.

DEFINING OBJECTIVES BY JANUARY 7, 2009 (when we plan to leave for Uganda).
  • Get Billy and Becky the clothes and supplies they will need in our home.
  • Set up the children's rooms.
1. BECKY: touch up the paint, add her name to the wall, kid friendly decorations.

2. BILLY and JAKE: finish the desk wall unit, redo and organize their closet, fix shade.

3. TJ and TYLER: expand the desk, remove the shelves, organize their closet, get a dresser and a mattress for Tyler, fix the shade.
  • Buy Becky and Billy a bike.
  • Learn the necessary hygene and specific needs of black children.
  • Solidify the plan for our 3 boys while we are in Uganda.
  • Complete the raising/generating of funds necessary for our adoption process.

DEFINING OBJECTIVES WHILE IN UGANDA WITH BECKY AND BILLY:
  • Bond with them as a family.
  • Complete the legal international adoption process.
  • Home school them for a smoother entry into the U.S. pre-k class

DEFINING OBJECTIVES BY MARCH 14, 2009
  • Plan the twins March birthday party bash.
  • Find a solution to Brian's truck for taking 7 people and a dog camping.

#3. HOW DO YOU TALK ABOUT AND USE THE ANSWER TO THESE QUESTIONS?
  • We will post them in our kitchen so they are clear and visible
  • We will discuss them weekly with our children.
  • Brian and Shannon will assess them every Monday morning in our family planning time.


Well, there you have it. Our family process out there for the world to observe. Hopefully it will encourage you to consider a process like this in your marriage and family. I'm hoping and praying that it helps us say yes to the right things and no to the wrong things in the coming months. I'm also praying that it becomes a regular part of our family, re-evaluating our collective "rallying cry" every time an old one is completed and a new one is needed.

Wish us luck... or better yet. Pray Hard.

3 comments:

Todd 6:55 AM  

love it... I find this kind of intentional goal setting inspiring, and liberating.

Of course, the Tolson's are praying for the Berry's.

Amy Guerino 9:53 AM  

Love it too!

Our family has a mission statement that keeps us re-evaluating priorities and such....keeps us from just adding mania.

It was good to reconnect with you on Facebook. Matt and I blog too.

angela emmons 12:50 AM  

very encouraging =) and...it makes my life look so less complicated

I'll be praying =)

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San Diego, CA
Husband. Dad. Jesus Follower. Friend. Learner. Athlete. Soccer coach. Reader. Builder. Dreamer. Pastor. Communicator. Knucklehead.

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