In Ontario, Canada (where my wife and I live) the third Monday in February is a recognized holiday called Family Day. I know it sounds a little soft, but any excuse for a long weekend is good to me!

In all the things I do, I know my responsibilities as a Father top them all. The legacy I can leave for the future generations is huge when I think of my children.

As a leader, my family is my foundation. My career, passions, hobbies and interests don’t have to be sacrificed in order to have a healthy family.

Paul, Laurie, Jaslyn and Jace Jolicoeur

Paul, Laurie, Jaslyn and Jace Jolicoeur

There is a balance that can be found, and I will admit I haven’t found it quite yet! My hope is that my healthy family relationships will give me the confidence to continue in everything I do.

My wife Laurie and I have 2 children. Our daughter Jaslyn is 2 and a half, and our son Jace will be 1 next month.

In honor of Family Day, here are 3 things my children have taught me and that I believe we can all learn:

1. They Listen and Repeat

This is as much a positive statement as it is a warning. My children are watching me. They watch me when I drive, when I talk to Laurie and when I am at church.

What they see me do and say, the will also do and say.

This should keep us on our toes and appreciative of the influence we have on our children.

2. The World is New Again

Going to the store or the park or even just looking out the window is an adventure when you have kids. They see the moon and the stars and the little squirrels running along the fence.

To them everything is awesome!

We take these things for granted because they are old news to us. Taking the time to live life through the eyes of a small child makes you more aware of the world around you.

3. Family Time is Priority

I love Saturday mornings! This is family time. We make breakfast (pancakes!) and eat together. The week might be crazy busy but this time rarely gets interrupted.

This is the time I hope my kids will be able to look back on and know their parents loved them enough to spend quality time with them. I know as they get older this time slot might chance but the principal won’t.

I have heard it said that children spell love with the letters T-I-M-E.

It doesn’t have to be breakfast, but you should have something.

My challenge to you if you have young children is to have some time each week that is special family time.

How do healthy family relationships allow you to focus on and excel at your passions and dreams?