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First Things First: The Rules of Being a Warner

3.89  ·  Rating Details ·  507 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
Kurt Warner is the two-time NFL MVP–winning quarterback of the Arizona Cardinals. Brenda Warner is an ex-Marine turned stay-at-home mom who collects coats for low-income kids and rocks babies to sleep at a hospital for chronically-ill infants. Together they’re the parents of seven, going into their 12th year of marriage, and founders of a foundation that helps disadvantage ...more
Hardcover, 284 pages
Published July 1st 2009 by Tyndale House Publishers (first published June 19th 2009)
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May 17, 2010 Christina rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2010
I really didn't know much about the Warners, but I enjoyed this book. They seem to be a straightforward Christian family with lots of practical suggestions for family life. The personal story of their background and marriage is compelling. Being an NFL family has many challenges and what makes this family unique is how they've stayed grounded despite the fame and fortune.

Their family rules include family dinner every night, sharing the best part of their day at dinner, always paying for another
Oct 24, 2010 Julie rated it it was ok
I'm not quite sure why I picked this up at the library but after reading this, I wish I hadn't. I guess if you're a Christian you'd find more in here that is of interest, but even skipping over the Jesus stuff all I came away with is the impression of Kurt Warner's wife Brenda is a very insecure woman. There is constant harping about how she doesn't trust her husband and feels threatened by other women because her first husband cheated on her. Yet, there's nothing about the man (first husband) a ...more
Oct 22, 2011 Kelly rated it it was ok
Shelves: non-fiction
Somewhat interesting, but didn't like the "Christian Lite" feel or the repeated references to their do-gooding. It seemed...I don't know...self-tooting? I think they are a really good family and I'm glad that there are families like them in the world who are willing to raise a passel of kids with solid family values. I didn't like hearing about the busyness of being a mom from a woman who has both a full-time nanny and house-cleaners. I got the book hoping it would be about the challenges and jo ...more
Cole Cousineau
May 31, 2017 Cole Cousineau rated it really liked it
Growing up with the Warner family feeding into my old high school is not only an honor but a blessing. This family does absolutely everything they can to not only help out their community, but they are a very charitable family as well. Learning about how and NFL family operates was very interesting to me for some reason. It's just one of those things where you ponder upon what its like to be an NFL star. However, I do understand that they are a hardcore Christian family, i believe it was express ...more
Mary Catherine
Mar 25, 2011 Mary Catherine rated it liked it
He’s an NFL star, which is probably one of the only reasons I downloaded this book when Amazon offered it for free for the Kindle. To be honest, I didn’t know what to expect when I started reading this book and by the time I finished it, I was left in a sort of limbo. On one hand, I feel like I learned valuable lessons that I actually try to execute now (such as always looking a restaurant server in the eye while speaking rather than talking to him or her as an afterthought); on the other hand, ...more
Dustin Hartley
Feb 18, 2017 Dustin Hartley rated it did not like it
Horribly written. Too much God and verbatim quotes for a memoir. Finishing the book would have been too much of an opportunity cost in that I should something better.
Mar 15, 2013 Kristi rated it liked it
I didn’t know much about Kurt and Brenda Warner before picking up this book. I admired their candidness about their family, marriage and faith. I love reading about large families and how they work hard to forge a strong, lasting bond. My husband and I are raising four children and implement many of the same family rules as the Warner clan. I picked up a few more from this book that I’d like to try as well.

I thought Kurt’s story perspective came across as completely genuine, humble and caring,
Jan 13, 2011 Kathleen rated it really liked it
This book spun off of a New York Times article in which the Warner children listed off some rules their family lives by. The Warner's received so many inquiries about these and this book is the result. Living in Arizona, I've watched Kurt Warner play football and seen and heard about his actions off the field. He's always seemed like a pretty down-to-earth guy and this book reinforces that image in my mind. He and Brenda candidly share about their life together, from how they met, to how they li ...more
Kyle McGinty
I liked the book in all fairness. It talks about family,football and becoming a parent. I liked that Kurt was just loving life and how he meet Brenda was just amazing. I liked that it talked about his life and then her life and basically add the kids in the middle. I think it was a daring move when it came to explain what she said and what he said in the same chapter to make you retain both info and try to move on in the story.

Kurt really takes you to reality on how he has failed and how he has
Jul 25, 2009 Cindy rated it really liked it
I've had this book in my "to read" shelf for two years since I received one of those forwarded emails about how Kurt Warner,quarterback for the Arizona Cardinals, met his wife, Brenda. Bailey needed a non-fiction book to read for AP English and we downloaded this one on the Kindle. If she can read it in two days, it can't be all that bad. She hates to read. So I read it too. It turns out the email version of how they met isn't exactly true, but he is a stand-up guy. You have to admire a guy who ...more
Apr 27, 2015 19notalb rated it liked it
First Things First by Kurt and Brenda Warner with Schumman

This book covers the career of him being a football player. The main characters in this book are Kurt and Brenda Warner. Kurt and Brenda influenced each other. This book is about their lives and what they did. Three exciting events are the bar where they met, Zack getting his dream to come true, and when they got married. There were parts where it made me bored and wanted to stop reading like when it talked about their love life and when
Nov 18, 2009 Alison rated it liked it
My brother-in-law is in his first year as quarterback coach of the Arizona Cardinals and, obviously, works with Kurt Warner. So, when I saw this book at the library I decided to read it. They talk about their Warner family rules... we do some of the same things in our home, and other ideas of theirs I really like and may try implementing with our family. They seem like pretty down-to-earth people and shared some fun stories. It was inspiring to read about how much Kurt and Brenda are involved in ...more
Jul 27, 2009 Ellen rated it it was amazing
Being a football fanatic, I have known who Kurt Warner is and have followed his career since his time with the Rams. VERY interesting book (Very little about football, mostly the family and charity work) and I love their family dynamics discussed in the book. Over the years I have read stories about what a good man he is, but I had no idea he is so involved in charity work with his own foundation, First Things First -- Worth looking at what he and his family do for others -- ...more
Feb 02, 2010 Eden rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book. I didn't know anything about Kurt Warner (is that horrible?) or his wife before reading their book. They did a great job of showing reality in their marriage and with their kids. Several things they mentioned as their rules I'm considering implementing -
#1 If you can't get along, you have to hold hands for 10 minutes. If that doesn't work, you have to sit cheek to cheek.
#2 When eating out (of course this doesn't happen often in our family), after ordering, you need t
May 04, 2012 Therese rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was a breath of fresh air. It was good to read a down-to-earth book about a celebrity (in this case retired NFL quarterback Kurt Warner) and his family, and learn about how they strive to maintain a Christian household. So much of the writing is about the "rules" of their home, but it really boiled down to keeping first things first. Kudos to the Warners for trying to raise a wholesome, low-profile family in which the talents and gifts of each child are recognized and encouraged, despi ...more
Nov 20, 2009 Cindy rated it it was ok
Shelves: parenting
This is obviously a family that is very committed to each other and a set of parents that are trying to raise their children to live a Christian life while in the media spotlight. I often had a difficult time connecting with their family and their ideas because of the HUGE difference in income levels (for example, we will never be starting a charitable foundation) but I give them a lot of credit for being able to withstand the media pressure and for doing everything they can to be above reproof. ...more
Jan 11, 2011 Wanda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
This is a really good book. Each chapter is broken down into two parts. One is written by Kurt Warner and then his wife, Brenda, writes her part. I did not like this at first. After a few chapters, it grew on me. It seemed the logical way to write what they were trying to convey. It was good to have the man's view and then the woman's view. Occasionally, their oldest daughter would add her view. This is a book a man might even read. It is a good book on their family life and what has worked for ...more
Bonnie McHenry
Jul 27, 2011 Bonnie McHenry rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I found this book to be "real", sad, funny, and helpful. I like how down to earth this family seems to be. It is nice to seem a family who knows that the pressures of society isn't easy and that marriage and family takes work and that is exactly what they want to do...constantly work on making their family and those in it they best they can be. Everyone helps and everyone is responsible for their own actions. But, there is also so much love and support among each other. Well written, easy to rea ...more
Oct 27, 2011 Terry rated it really liked it
This book was written by Brenda and Kurt Warner, Kurt of NFL QB fame. I was impressed with their well grounded Christian perspective on family, life and child-rearing. They certainly provide a high standard for what is regretably an environment that is anything but on high moral ground. There are some good philosophical nuggets in here and I applaud them for getting this out to the public. For those that enjoy sports heroes, it's worth your time.
Chris The
Dec 01, 2010 Chris The rated it it was amazing
I thought it was very good. I didn't know Kurt Warner played for the New York Giants in 2005. This book is about Kurt Warner and his family. It also talks about the house rules and their religion. If you were a Kurt Warner fan, then this book is for you. Or maybe you want to know more about Kurt Warner. Well this is a really good book for you too.I think this book is five stars. I'm really glade I found this book.
Ok, I'll admit that I had never heard of Kurt Warner when I saw this book at the library. I just thought it was a book about a couple who have seven kids and are trying to raise them to love Jesus. (And that really is what the book is about.) It wasn't until I started reading that I found out Kurt Warner is a pro football player. The book is interesting and has some good ideas for building character in kids. I like how the husband and wife each give their viewpoint on the same topics.
Sep 12, 2009 Halley rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
This book is about Kurt and Brenda Warner's rules of marriage and family life and how to have a successful family. It is very insightful and I learned a lot of good things. Each chapter begins with Kurt's point of view and then switches to Brenda's point of view. It's fun to see the two different personalities and perspectives and how they work together. It is a very well written book and is like talking with a friend rather than a how to list of how to make marriage and family life work.
Mar 04, 2011 Elsa rated it really liked it
Shelves: on-my-kindle
I read this book on my kindle and actually downloaded it free. I must admit I was attracted to its nice cover. :) I began reading and found myself interested in more family-oriented advice. I often thought to myself "Hey, I think I should try that". As I also found myself laughing through some parts such as the Thanksgiving Restaurant incident. I even remember mentioning some parts to my husband. Overall, not bad!
Oct 06, 2010 Sara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011, 1000-before-30
Like any family, the Warners have established some "rules" to keep their family running smoothly. They have a celebrity life and many children, so their rules might be different from yours and mine, but at the end of the day they're a basically normal family. There were a few things I don't think I'd ever do and a few things I thought were great ideas, but at the end of the day I mostly just found it interesting to peek into their lives.
Nov 12, 2011 Tracy rated it liked it
Deserves 3 1/2 stars if I could figure that out. I picked it up not knowing much about this family other than they seemed to have it all figured out. They don't. They're just like us with several more kids, piles of money & athletic fame. They've done amazing things with their foundation and their book gives me great inspiration for my own life.
Jim Johnson
This book reads like Brenda Warner is forcing her deranged insecurities onto her husband and kids (and even her friends) and Kurt Warner has duped himself into Christianity and a whole host of controlling rules in a sad attempt to appease his wife. I would have much preferred a book about football than to be lectured on the Warner family household rules.
Sep 12, 2012 Julia rated it liked it
Shelves: life
I wanted to read this story cause of the e-mails I received about how Kurt met his wife Brenda. Which I found out the truth by reading this book. Their rules overwhelmed me, made me feel like I wasn't doing a very good job with my own family. Yet I have started several of them & found them to work wonderfully.
Aug 06, 2013 Pam rated it really liked it
True thoughts and stories about their lives. Very funny in places and because Kurt quarterbacked for the best football team we, in St. Louis have had, there have been many, many interviews with him. As a result, I already knew a lot of this information but couldn't resist buying the book to read it all in one place.
Aug 10, 2009 Richard rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents, prospective parents, couples
This book exceeded my mid-level expectations. Excellent parenting & relationships advice here. Virtually no preaching. I'm not a religious person and I had no problem reading the sections where the Warners explain how faith informs their life as parents and as husband/wife. It was fun learning about the Warner's life, also.
Rachel C.
Sep 30, 2010 Rachel C. rated it did not like it
Vanilla, Brady Bunch mush for the masses. All the Born Again stuff made me roll my eyes.

I am SO not the target audience for this book - not a football fan, not a Christian, don't have any kids. So why did I even bother? Mostly because Kurt Warner's on Dancing with the Stars this season and it was a Kindle freebie. (I did a quick skim and was through in about an hour.)
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“I’m the head and not the tail. I’m above and not below. I will find favor with man and God. I was created in the image of God to do good things and to love people.” 0 likes
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