Tag Archives: liesl oestreicher

99 Thoughts on Raising Your Parents

with my daughter, liesl, starting her 9-month gap year experience in europe and india, and with my son, max, starting high school last week, my kids have been on my mind quite a bit. so, it’s funny that i forgot to announce here on my blog that the three of us — me, liesl and max — wrote a book that recently released!

it was a blast writing a book with my kids. we went on a 3-day retreat to my silent place in the california desert and framed the whole thing, getting some of it written. then we came back to it a month or so later on a vacation and spent a few more days. they really did write a big chunk of it, and we all spoke into each other’s writing, tweaking and plussing.

anyhow: it’s a book for teenagers, in simply youth ministry’s “99 thoughts” line. it’s available anywhere you buy books, but we’re selling it on The Youth Cartel store, of course. parents, order one for your teenager! youth workers, pick up a case!

here’s the back cover copy:

99 Thoughts on Raising Your Parents: Living the Sweet Life at Home

Liesl and Max Oestreicher aren’t perfect teenagers, and they’re the first to admit it. They get in trouble, they fight with their parents (and each other), and they frustrate their teachers from time to time.

But they do have something that a lot of teenagers really wish they had: a better than average relationship with their parents.

99 Thoughts on Raising Your Parents is filled with ideas from this sister-and-brother duo on having fun as a family, appreciating why moms and dads do what they do, and finding the best ways to handle arguments and disagreements with your parents. (They’ll also divulge a few secrets about rules, independence, and getting permission!)

Even though the teenage years aren’t easy, you’ll find that a little bit of patience, understanding, and communication will go a long way toward experiencing a more solid relationship with your parents, and Liesl and Max are ready to be your guides along the way!

liesl’s new record in cherry stem tying

a few years ago, i showed my daughter liesl my ability to tie a knot in a maraschino cherry stem with my tongue (while in my mouth). i could do this in 15 or 20 seconds. she quickly upstaged me by tying knots in 5 or 6 seconds. her record was 3.6 seconds.

the other night, our family was out for dinner, celebrating max’s 14th birthday. it was a dark restaurant, so the video is weak. but it proves her setting a new record — 2.6 seconds!

liesl’s secret pal video

my 17 year-old daughter liesl has been a camp counselor for much of the summer. the staff and counselors of the camp have “secret pals” (like secret santas), and give each other little gifts of encouragement. after giving her secret pal a couple physical gifts, she was out of ideas for the third gift. then, thinking about the fact that her pal is the guy who makes the camp videos, decided to make this video for him. it totally cracked me up.

seriously, i have the most awesome kids.

liesl’s superpower: tongue-tied

a few years ago, i was showing my daughter, liesl, my amazing ability to tie a knot in a maraschino cherry stem using only my tongue. i was pretty proud of my ability to complete this feat of strength and intelligence in about 20 or 30 seconds, on most attempts.

then liesl tried it, and my prowess was quickly lame.

she can consistently tie the knot in under 10 seconds. her record is 3 seconds. the other night, when my family surprised me with a birthday dinner at buca de beppo, liesl asked me to film her making an attempt. alas, she didn’t beat 3 seconds. but this video shows her doing it in 4.5 seconds.

girls and snakes both grow up

a couple years ago, i posted about my then 15 year-old daugher, liesl, and the albino milk snake she had just purchased.

recently, i’ve been noticing with amazement the woman that liesl is becoming. she’s a stellar human with superpowers of compassion, experimentation, thoughtfulness, creativity, and risk-taking. she refuses to fit into a mold. she plays viola in an orchestra, electric bass and keyboard in a worship band, and listens to old-skool punk. she modifies her clothing, and dresses herself like no one else. she is passionate about justice. she is a natural problem solver (which shows up in many places, including her natural aptitude for math). and she wants to change the world.

then i noticed amii (the snake). after two years of a steady mousey diet, amii has grown quite a bit also. i checked back on my blog to see that 2 year-old photo of liesl and amii, then took this new one: