Seal of Approval

Last week, my son was given a homework assignment to create a family seal.

I couldn’t resist; I had to draw one, too.

Here's hoping this will be passed down for generations to come.
Here’s hoping this will be passed down for generations to come. (Click to enlarge.)

This begs a question, I think:

What would you put on your family seal?

124 Replies to “Seal of Approval”

  1. “Don’t be a candy ass” … OMG, that expression is still around?!! I haven’t heard that in … well, forever. What a brilliant family motto ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Brilliant! Matthew had to do that at school too. He put the guinea pigs on it. So funny to see what they put on it.

    1. Alex is a public school kid, and, yup, yhe looming shadow of Pearson can be found in New Jersey’s PARCC tests.

      Fortunately, his school is a good one, filled with passionate teachers who know how to stimulate the creative spirit.

      1. The “ultra conservative” is new to me. You don’t consider your dalliance with Harper a sign of ultra-conservatism do you?

        Have you seen what is happening south of your border?

  3. This one is a tough one. . . . It would probably have a picture of an English Bulldog and the names of all of the pets we’ve ever had over the years. Love your family crest/seal! Candy ass is not a term that I’m familiar with. Learn something new every day! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Well, I would definitely have to start off with, of course, a seal. Maybe a seal in Thor garb with Mjolnir and and lightening riding a Viking ship. The we would have to add tons of musical instruments and sports equipment since both are very prevalent in our family. And I think, with your inspiration, I would have death to spiders on mine!

      1. True. I meant similar in structure…and word usage. We may have to start adopting yours though, especially with our oldest…

  5. Now THAT’S a family crest….especially the brussel sprouts. I don’t no anyone who likes that particular noxious veggie although I have to admit, I hated peas growing up. I used to pack them in my cheeks and spit them out in the back yard. I lived in fear they would sprout and my mother would find out I had never managed to eat them. The mouse at the top is a wonderful addition along with the motto. I remember “Candy Ass” with great fondness. Haha

    1. For some reason my blog attracts sprout lovers and cat fanatics. I do not know why. It’s a good thing they are all lovely, funny people or I wouldn’t know what to do with myself.

      Your veggie comment made me snort, by the way. I just love the childlike idea of spat-out cooked peas sprouting in your yard. It feels like a picture book idea. Should you write it, or shall I?

      “Candy Ass” seems to have fallen out of favor with this more enlightened generation of parents, but I think the term is long overdue for a renaissance. That motto is perhaps the finest advice my mother ever gave me (and the woman was full of good advice). It taught me persistence and grit, and allowed me to endure crushing failures. No candy ass here, that’s for sure!

      1. Oh good. Glad to hear I was able to return the favor and get a snort out of you. Hopefully you weren’t drinking anything.
        No one could ever accuse you of being a candy ass that’s for sure and your mother sounds like a woman of grit herself. Although not necessarily a family motto, my father always complained that “ne’er do wells” were as useful “as tits on a bull.” I will have to reword that phrase somehow for our family crest as 30 years later I still remember it fondly.
        I think you should draw the picture book. I may be able to provide carefully worded witty repartee but I wouldn’t do justice to the image drawn. Just imagine a scrawny young girl with blond braids with cheeks so packed they looked like a ground squirrel and not in a cute way.

      2. Just because your father’s words are not a family motto, per se, it doesn’t mean they *can’t* be. Go on. Engrave it on a beer stein! Embroider it on a pillow! Find a way to pass his words down from one generation to the next! Your family is counting on you!

        On another note, I shall pursue the pea spitting story. I’ll keep you posted.

      3. Okay, don’t know why but that stupid story of peas sprouting in my backyard wouldn’t go away. Oh chilling childhood memories. Anyway, I wrote the story or a story. Are you ready to doodle it to life?

  6. I would put a neckerchief on our family seal, because seals look good in neckerchiefs, and maybe also give him a ball and one of those bike horn set-ups.

    But I’m pretty sure the Wesson family crest says: “Often Wrong, But Never Uncertain.” I married in, though, so . . .

  7. You son must be very proud of you – and not one actual ‘seal’ on the seal (I looked everywhere). On our family seal? candy (no ass included), for sure; books; heart signs (god, I’m so candyassed); books (oh, I already said that); a pen, a laptop (we have a progressive family); a dog; hmm, I guess I’d have to check in with the rest of the family on what else.
    (oh, and just because I have to now, a bundle of Brussel sprouts – so there)

      1. Oh, au contraire. You would be disappointed if I had NO sprouts. Now I realize I also should also add artichokes – they make a great design on each corner of the seal.

  8. I love your seal. I don’t think we call them seals here, I think we call them a family coat of arms…or shield…I can’t remember now, I’m all confused! I can’t possibly think about what would be on my family one until I remember what we call them! Love yours by the way.

    1. Oh, no you don’t, Vanessa. This is not the first time you replied to one of my blog questions with a non-answer. Dangit, you’re British! A coat of arms question should be right up your alley!

  9. A middle finger probably wouldn’t be the most appealing image on a family seal, would it. Maybe a kitty? Or a bunny? Or a sloth? Or maybe Grumpy Cat. So many possibilities.

    By the way, I want you to know that I’ve come out of hibernation specifically to comment on your blog.

    1. No joke, Weebles, when I saw your name in my comments section, I got a little giddy. I am honored that you have decided to break your bloggy silence by visiting little ol’ me.

      A sloth would be an amazing addition to any seal; he could conveniently hang from the bottom of it, thereby freeing up more space for grumpy cats, bunnies, obscene gestures, and portraits of Hot Dead People.

  10. You seal is wonderful–meaningful and expressive. Perhaps I’d have a book crossed with a wine glass. Since my husband should have a say he suggested mountains because that’s notable in our childhood city. What does the goat mean?

    1. I could totally see a wine glass/book/mountain range seal. It would be elegant and austere.

      I am a big fan of goats — and would own a few if I had enough land for them to graze upon. Until I get a bigger piece of property, I will have to be content with regular visits to area petting zoos.

  11. Hmmmm. Well, there would be a posse of cats, of course, pushing a Roomba off a cliff. Also an entire quadrant dedicated to cruciferous vegetables (cabbages, cauliflower, broccoli, and yes, brussels sprouts) wearing crowns. Another quadrant filled with Rube Goldberg-esque contraptions, tree houses, duct tape, pulleys and zip lines, jet packs, hovercrafts, quadcopters, etc. If it gets too crowded in that quadrant, we’ll attach them all with kite string. Another quadrant dedicated to things that explode, leaving room for the occasional fart joke. Another quadrant for ballistic devices such as catapults, trebuchets, and water balloons. Another quadrantโ€”wait, why do I only get four quadrants? Let’s include string theory, so our crest can appear in the 11 dimensions in the spacetime continuum, otherwise known as Mtheory. So now I can turn all my quadrants into hendecagants, one filled with pints of strawberry-balsamic vinegar or chocolate ice cream, another with Green & Black’s 70% cacao chocolate, another filled with people dressed like salmon all swimming upstream, another filled with Scrabble, crosswords and Bananagrams. Another with sailboats and sandy beaches, a buried treasure chest or two. Let’s see, how many is that? I supposed I could go on into infinite dimensions, but I’ll just end with my mother’s favorite saying: “Better to wear out than to rust out.”

  12. Ooh…I have never been good at instant answers and had to ponder this a bit. So, here’s my off the cuff, not so instant response. I would have an easel and paintbrush, garden tools and flowers, one showing mini adventures like sail boating and zip lining, a magician that pulls a house out of his hat and a bird feeder with a bird and squirrel sword fighting on top. ๐Ÿ™‚

  13. Mike,
    You start my Fridays with such creative fun! Thanks. If I were to make a family seal there would have to be a deserted island on it, for writing time–but wait, if the island is deserted, then how would there be next gens? Hmm… maybe a family seal isn’t in my future after all.

    Have a creative day.

  14. Oh, my, where to even begin? ‘Don’t be a candy ass,’ might now become my new fave expression, and I love that there’s a Billy goat eating away at the crest. You may be the only dad who wants to do his kids’ homework that much, which is awesome.

    As for mine, I really had to think about this for a few days since you posted the doodle. My mom loved to say that her side of the family was descended from the royal House of Hapsburg but only because someone stooped the maid and the offspring was one of Mom’s forebears. So I think one side of our crest would be an image of a maid running from a nobleman, but not too fast, because clearly she kinda liked getting caught.

    My dad was a range sighter on tanks in World War II, which meant he was often outside the tank. Even so he only got shot once–in the hiny. Growing up, he occasionally complained of sore ass from that old war wound. So clearly, the other side of our crest would be a super tough soldier with a Band-Aid on his butt.

    Thank you for the opportunity to consider my family heritage.

    1. To be honest, this homework assignment was the ONLY one I wanted to do. My son’s school does not provide enough doodling opportunities for parents, I’m afraid.

      And, if I may say so, your family seal sounds wonderful. Simply wonderful.

  15. Love it! What a great homework assignment too! As for our family seal…hmmm…there would be a passport over a globe (we all travel a lot and have lived/do live all over the place) and there would be animals (for sure the goats and the pony have to make it in, along with some escaping budgies) and…oh, the old BMW van my brother and I used to wave out the back of as six of us packed in for family holidays…and food, lots of it and everywhere, and beaches! Ok, now put that all together, and what have you got…dang! I sure wish I could doodle!!! H xxx

  16. Oh, man! I loved the family seal project in school! Glad they’re still doing that.

    Um for me, there would be: Mr. H, a MacBook, a big ass beer, my stuffed cow Ken, and don’t hate me…two cats.

  17. How did I miss this post? Well, my family seal would definitely need a wheelchair, or no, a cane. And a pool or swim goggles and a towel. Not sure what the motto would be, wasn’t really prepared to answer this question, but I am now interested in drawing my own seal. How did your son’s family crest turn out? What did he have on his that you did not? You forgot the golf ball collection. I do love your doodles. I think it is past time for me to win another of your doodles. I would definitely put THAT on my family seal (it would be better than anything I could draw). Though, I did go to a liberal arts college and learning to draw was actually a requirement.

    1. How about someone snorkeling in a wheelchair? If you win the next doodle contest, ask me to draw that, OK?

      My son’s seal was lovely — but quite different from mine. His had movies and Legos on it. Fortunately, he also found a little space to include books!

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