Thanks for voting!

It looks like I share one thing in common with President Obama. We have both been reelected.

That's right...theMangoTimes has been voted once again as the Best Homeschool Dad Blog! That's awesome and I thank all of my readers for voting.

I realize it's not a popular category. There aren't that many homeschool dads who write blogs (reminds me of the new Disney show: Dog With A Blog. there are only a few of us out there). However, as small as the category may be, I like to think that theMT represents a different slice of the conservative Christian homeschool community.

You know what I mean? In public, Christian homeschoolers are the butt of many jokes. Last year, one of my favorite Halloween costumes was a couple that dressed as homeschoolers (essentially they dressed as nerds, only they wore more denim). Christian homeschoolers are often viewed as uber-conservatives who dress their kids off the Garanimal rack. They button shirts to the chin and hem skirts to the ankles and pile their giant families into fifteen-passenger vans on their way to and from church sanctioned educational events. This microcosm of homeschooling tend to run in their own circles. They play instruments, not sports! (Well, except for Tim Tebow, because he is the poster child for Christian Homeschool normalization).

Relax. I will stop. I know I am exaggerating. I hope by now you would know that I like to push the example to the edge.

Only this time, my example is pretty close to reality (for years we did pile our kids into a fifteen passenger van and shuttle them to and from educational events, music lessons, and Christian homeschool gatherings, but our kids never wore Garanimals).

Yikesy, we can be an odd bunch. That is one of the reasons I like to write about homeschooling in theMangoTimes. I like to demonstrate that you can desire all the positive things about homeschooling as a Christian family, without losing your voice in the world or living up to the wacky stereotype that comes with it. I also like to think that theMT is one of the only homeschool dad blogs that will write about Church Music like this and I think I am one of the only who has a wife who is in fact a super hero

Thanks for voting for theMangoTimes!

Quietly making noise,
Fletch

Winner!

Thanks for voting! I cannot believe it, but I was voted the Best Homeschool Dad Blog for 2010. I was truly surprised by this year's results and I am thankful anyone even cares what I write.
I was unable to make it to the ceremony when the awards were presented, but here are a few random quotes I picked up from those that were in attendance:

The Award Committee: "Best Homeschool Dad Blog goes to...(pause)...What? Are you sure? This guy? Again?...(pause)...Yes, sorry...and this year's best homeschool dad blog goes to The Mango Times...(whispers)...shhh...I don't know how he won, we took his name out of the envelope on purpose."

President Barack Obama: "Mr. Fletcher or Fletch as he has asked me to call him is truly deserving of this award and he embodies the "can-do" American spirit that I have been talking about throughout my presidency. His commitment to blogging and "quietly making noise" sets him apart in the blogosphere. Personally, Michelle and I would like to thank him for his behind the scenes work on this year's Beer Summit and those crazy rides he gave us and the secret service in his VW bus."

Russ N. Peace, American Roadside Memorial Association: "Yes, we are here to protest this award, because of his ongoing remarks against road side memorials..."

Jimmy Buffett (video): "Congratulations from Key West, FL to the Mango Man for another fabulous showing at the Homeschool Blog Awards! Fins to the left! Your pal Jimmy!"

John Warren, Retired USAF: "Deserving? Hardly...Fletch doesn't even write this stuff...theMangoTimes has been ghost written by his son Christian for years..."

Cookie Fletcher, mother: "As I like to say, it's all in the way you raise your children...which reminds me of a story about this time in Baltimore when Andy was born..."

Joe Fletcher, father: "My son won an award! Attaboy Scott! Good job!"

Kendra Fletcher: "Oh brother, another year of him wearing that stupid shirt that says "Bow down to the Homeschool Dad Blog Champion" around the house!"

Like I said...just a sampling of things that were said at the awards banquet. Friends in Mangoland, thanks for voting. From the very first issue of theMangoTimes, I have always written for a select group of readers. For the rest of you who like my words, thanks for hanging around!

Quietly making noise,
Fletch

Double Victory...

loisclark.jpgNot sure if this is a first or not...but Kendra and I won the best homeschool Mom and Dad blog awards this year! Two winners in the same house...if only the kids had a blog, we could have gone for the triple-crown!
A hearty thanks to everyone that voted for theMangoTimes...especially Smidge (eric's wife)...who hit the virtual campaign trail for both of us while still on bed rest awaiting #8 (they already know it's a girl, but had it been a boy...she was going to name it "Mango").
Thanks for voting for us! If it wasn't for the shameless plugs and pleading for votes...I would have been still celebrating my nomination!
Quietly making noise,
Fletch


More Voting...

Yes...I know the homeschool blog awards close this week...and yes...I realize that theMangoTimes has maintained a solid 2nd place, and I realize that here at theMT we live by the motto: "where gettin' by is good enough..." But did I mention that I have been bit by the contest bug for another contest this week?

I submitted five photographs to a contest in our local newspaper. submissions were supposed to depict California locales...so I filtered through my files and settled on 5 Napa Valley photographs I shot this year. If the editors of the newspaper choose one of them, they will be submitted to the paper and the readers will be able to choose. Considering it's a long shot, I thought I'd run my official opinion poll here with my favorite readers. They are linked below (sorry for the size, cropping and shrinking loses quality), so in no particular order, which one do you like best?

Photo #1
Photo #2
Photo #3
*hoto #4
Photo #5

And while you are in a voting mood...travel over and drop a vote for theMangoTimes.

Quietly making noise,
Fletch