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lessons – Mommy of Many®

Archive for the lessons Category

Well That Explains It!

August 8, 2013

Yesterday I had one of those terribly emberrassing Mommy Moments, where you have a child who’s acting out so badly and you just can’t get them to stop. This usually happens with an overtired toddler, but this was my 7 yr old! We got home and I put him straight to bed. He ended up sleeping for over 4 hours and I figured that being tired was the reason for his meltdown.

Then I got home from work today and found him lying in my bed, watching a movie on the laptop and hot with a fever. Ah ha!

How many times have we, as parents, been able to look back and better understand why our child had an issue…any issue? I’m out of the practice of dealing with toddlers, so his behavior didn’t make any sense to me. But it sure does today!

Doing the Dance of the Children and revisiting old lessons~

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M.O.M.’s Morning Madness or How I Stay Sane~

April 24, 2013

It’s 7:30am and the kids just rode off to school on their bikes. They are dressed, fed, hair-fixed, teeth-brushed, backpacks-packed, school-ready kids. It didn’t happen without a morning filled with Mommy Madness.

I sent Max to bed last night, to get recharged and with the hope that he’d wake up and have a new perspective on his homework. It’s a technique that’s worked in the past. Today it was an utter failure. We sat for nearly 2 hours and got about 7 problems done. This is not because he is incapable of the work and it’s not because he doesn’t understand the work. It’s because he simply decided he wasn’t going to do it. Once he makes that decision, all bets are off! This is the same child that, as a 1st grader, hid MONTHS worth of homework under his bed. ~Sigh~

The best tactic I’ve found to keep my sanity when dealing with difficult children, is madness, goofiness, humor. A silly song about the situation goes a long way to break tension for all involved. I can choose to scold, berate or punish or I can Do a Dance or make up a rhyme. The number of times my kids have heard ridiculous songs can’t be counted.

Once my other children saw that Max was being difficult, it was like a Difficult Free-for-All. “My shoes are too tight”. “I don’t like this food”. “I’m freezing”. “I’m sick”. Name it, I heard it. I broke into song about peanut butter bread;

A little bread
A little spread
Gives us all a very good head

Hey, I have to make the point for the importance of breakfast, somehow!

Next it was scolding shoes that were too tight;

Bad shoes!
Bad shoes!
Why must you be bad shoes?!

I’m sitting here, knowing I need to start my work day and feeling absolutely drained from the last few hours of Doing the Dance! Perhaps a song will help motivate me;

Put on your shoes
Put on your pants
Put on your makeup and get on with The Dance!

I think Paulo Coelho said it best;

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Change the Scenery-A M.O.M. Tip to Relieve Frustration

June 3, 2012

In the time that I’ve been quiet over here, I’ve been learning new ways, and revisiting some old ways (I can foresee a Learning Lessons post brewing) to parent. And one of the things that I’ve practiced (and am learning to revisit) over the 23 years that I’ve been a mom, is to change the scenery.

When things are getting crazy-you have things that MUST get done and your kiddos aren’t cooperating and seem like they’ve been possessed by a demolition team of starved hyenas, scoop them up and GO! You MUST all leave the situation to change it. Take them outside, put them in the car, walk to the park. Whatever it is to remove yourselves from the madness, do it! This doesn’t mean you’re abandoning the tasks you need to get done, it just means that you realize that they won’t get done if the situation doesn’t change.

You’re in change, Mama…so change it.

Taking a little bit of time to help everyone refocus is going to change the situation, improve the behaviors and release the frustration that’s surely mounting in you…and them.

After the amount of time that your need to feel the stress released, explain to them what’s going to happen-You’re going to go back to your task. They are going to read/watch a movie/play in the back yard/have quiet time in their rooms…Whatever it is that you decide. Lay out the plan and then go back to it.

I promise that your frustration will have diminished and that, for at least a little while, you will be able to get your tasks done. But this bit of M.O.M. advice is to be repeated, over and over again as each situation arises.

Good luck Mamas. Through love, support and good tips, we will all make it and have less stress as we go.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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The Things a Girl Learns When She’s On Her Own…

November 23, 2011

So, tonight I got a valuable lesson in patience and clear-headed thinking. My sink was backed up. Not just backed up but full of all sorts of icky looking things in brown water AND backed up. I pushed up my sleeve and reached into the disposal. I fished out a few items-carrot top, onion peelings and 1/2 a lemon. I tried the disposal again, got a nice water show, but didn’t make any progress on getting the sink to drain. Now, in years past my way of handling this would have been to pick up the phone, put a call into Housing Maintenance (for those who have never lived in Military Housing, let me just tell you that Housing Maintenance is amazing. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! There is always…ALWAYS someone to answer the phone, take the description of what’s wrong/broken/clogged/needing to be replaced and then they determine if it’s an emergency or if it can wait to be handled within the next 24 hours). I lived in Housing for the last 12 years. I pretty much didn’t need to learn to fix anything. But now…different story.

After clearing whatever I could find I ran the water and the disposal again. Nope! So I reluctantly went and got the plunger. The only thing that allowed my ick factor to use the plunger is the fact that it’s new. I made a mental note to purchase a Kitchen-Only plunger to keep under the sink.

One of these brightly colored cuties would do

So I plunged and I gathered and I learned that water that won’t drain down the sink WILL come out the handy overflow thingy on top of my sink . Ok! So I made sure it was aiming into the sink and I plunged all the water out of the sink through the overflow. Along with the water came many many potato peelings, carrot peelings and of all things-onion peelings. Someone (who does not live in my house) needs a lesson on what can and can not go down the disposal!

40 minutes later, with rough, dry hands, I cleaned the sink with soap and hot water and replaced the bathroom plunger behind the toilet, where it belongs. And though I wasn’t particularly pleased about having to learn this lesson, I am patting myself on the back for a job completed (not sure about well done).

Doing the Dance of the Children and Learning Something New Everyday~

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An Avoidable Mommy Mistake

September 29, 2011

It’s never fun when your kids have a public meltdown and realizing that you may have been the cause of such an emotionally taxing event makes it even worse!

For the past several weeks, Gabi’s been working hard to earn 10 blue ribbons from her teacher. These little awards are given out for all sorts of good behavior in the classroom. Gabi’s been bringing them home and taping them to her bedroom door, anxious to get to her goal and earn the prize of a trip to the dollar store with me. 2 days ago she brought home her 10th ribbon. Whoo Hoo! We decided we’d make our trip out to the dollar store the following day. Happy, happy girl! On the way, I asked her if she’d rather get a drink at Starbucks or a milkshake or even a yogurt from the local yogurt shop. She answered “no” to all. Ok then! To the dollar store it is! But first I wanted to stop at a local department store that I’d been wanting to check out. Here is where I went wrong.

We meandered through the women’s shoe department and the home department and then stumbled upon the kid’s section. It wasn’t big, but it DID have a fancy, $10 Barbie puzzle that came with all manner of decor to liven it up after you’ve put it together. The idea of the dollar store went completely out of Gabi’s head. She wanted that puzzle! I pointed out $5 items instead, explaining that her reward was really only $1 ($2 on the outside, if she really couldn’t pick between 2 wonderfully eye-catching items). I said I was willing to go with one of the $5 items, but $10 was too much and I’d keep it in mind for her birthday. Once the meltdown started I even went so far as to say that there are often lots of things we want but that they just simply aren’t available to us. In my frustrated explanation I may have said something like, “if you’re offered a fancy cup of coffee, you don’t get to cry about wanting a new car!”. Maybe…

So I carried her into the dollar store, trying to lure her with the likes of fairy wands and whole bags of ring pops. Still the tears flowed. I finally let her know she could pick out 2 items and that I promised I would remember that she wanted that puzzle for the future. Still she cried. Eventually she picked out 2 items and we got back to the van where she started screaming that I needed to go back and return them because she DID NOT want them! Ugh~

We made it home where I asked her  to go spend some time in her room and that if she really REALLY didn’t want the 2 items, I’d take them back in the morning. I made dinner feeling like the worst mom. I totally ruined her experience!

The good news is that she DID get over it. She came out and broke open the paints and the lovely, rose suncatcher and had a great time painting it. Then we hung it in her window. All good.

Lesson Learned! Stick with the plan!

Doing the Dance of the Children and Learning all the Way~

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I’m So Glad I Was Wrong!

September 9, 2011

When I moved and found out that kindergarten in this area is a 1/2 day program, I was SO annoyed! I couldn’t believe it! Really?! 1/2 day?! After 2 years of 1/2 day preschool, I felt like we were just extending that experience instead of moving forward into a Big Kid role. I wondered how I’d be able to find a job and what sense it made to even look. I thought of a ton of reasons to be annoyed that my last kiddo, my baby, wasn’t going to be in school all day.

What the heck was I thinking?!

I am SO glad to have one more year of getting Mommy & Me time with my last lil guy EVERY SINGLE DAY! We get 2 hours together between when I pick him up and when I pick up the other kids. We don’t always do something exciting, but even if he’s watching a movie next to me, while I’m folding clothes, we are spending that time together. We’ve gotten milkshakes, met friends at the park, done grocery shopping and read books. No matter what it is we’re doing, I’m going to miss this time when it’s over. I’m so glad I was able to get over my annoyance and see the gift I’ve been given! What a lesson for me, to slow down and see things differently.

This M.O.M. is encouraging each of you busy, overworked, overscheduled and patience-worn-thin parents to take a big breath and enjoy the little bit of time in which your kids are still LITTLE. I know I’m going to do my best to.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Tough but Fragile

September 8, 2011

Sometimes its hard to juggle what each of my kids need. It’s easy to decide to label them for their strengths and task them accordingly. Every so often I’m reminded that I need to be mindful of their weaker points.

Getting ready for school is always a flurry of activity and me shouting out orders for tasks that need to be attended to. I’d make one heck-of-a drill instructor (not always the BEST quality in a mom)! But on a couple of recent occasions I’ve had a kiddo meltdown during this routine. The excuse has been clothing or shoes and not liking what’s available (how I miss uniforms!), but I know there’s more to it. I know that my tough, locked on, lil kiddo is more likely thrown off because the outfit that they’ve picked out and are not being allowed to wear is more tied to being in a new place and trying to figure out what’s going to be “acceptable” to this new peer group. Ugh! The brainwork that goes into parenting! This requires me being firm about what’s acceptable to be worn to school, but also takes me spending some time (usually in hindsight and after school) to sit with the child and discuss what’s really behind the meltdown over what’s being worn.

I’ve had to realize that under the tough exterior is a fragile little person who needs less drill instructor and more tender, Mommy time. I’m working on softening up my voice. I wake up with the intent to use a kinder, softer voice and it lasts about 1/2 and hour, while I watch everyone meander around with no actual direction and then the GET-ON-TASK, CAN’T-YOU-SEE-WHAT-TIME-IT-IS voice kicks in.

A lesson to keep working on. But you can bet I’ll find time this afternoon to take the lil one aside and talk to them about what’s behind the clothing and shoe issue. I’m hoping that picking clothes out the night before and getting them approved ahead of time will help.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Home is Where Somebody Loves You

July 29, 2011

I firmly believe that everything happens for a reason and in it’s right time. This belief is the only thing keeping me from going crazy about not having a house yet. I’ve filled my days with looking for a house and keeping the kiddos busy and entertained.

We’ve had lots of fun visiting with family and friends and exploring new water play. My beach kids are getting introduced to the river. I’m much more nervous about this than they are. In fact my nerves are frazzled because they’re fearless! I’d like to instill a healthy dose of respectful fear! I’m ever grateful for the people who come into our lives each day and bring little doses of good things! Yesterday the kids got to participate in a little bit of fishing. Max was mesmerized! Fish! Real fish, straight from the water that are still alive! All 4 of my younger kids enjoyed learning about the process and being able to touch the fish as they came out of the water. Good Stuff!

I’m waiting on a phone call for a house I’ve put an application on. Everything is hinging on getting into a house. I’ve got to get these kids registered in school! It starts in just a couple of weeks! Ugh! But my nerves get soothed by little things each day. Yesterday I heard a conversation between Tristan and Max. They were talking about “home”. Tristan said, “Home is where somebody loves you”.

This sentence from my 11 yr old to his younger brother made me feel so much better! They’re ok! They’re being kept busy and happy and they’re not as stressed as I worry they are. To let go and trust like a child is definitely a goal.

Doing the Dance of the Children and Waiting For it All To Fall Into Place

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We Are More Than Our Labels-Staving Off An Identity Crisis

July 8, 2011

The last few days of not having my kids with me, not having a home to go to, not having a schedule or what feels like a purpose have brought me to the brink of an identity crisis. I’ve felt fragmented and completely out of every element I’ve ever come to be comfortable with and in. I’ve had to do some serious soul searching to figure out what was going on in me.

For 22 years I’ve been a mom. I’ve been the primary care giver to all of my children over ALL that time. It’s not only been a label I’ve been wearing, but it became woven into the very fabric of my being-shaping every move I’ve made, every schedule I’ve written and lived by. During a great deal of those 22 years I also wore the label of wife. It took me a a long time to come to terms with peeling that label off. Now I’m dealing with how it feels when our labels become intertwined and  I’m learning to draw the line between where one ends and another begins-how you can take one off and still wear the others. Nothing will ever change the fact-FACT that I’m a mom, not just A mom, but M.O.M. and whether my kids are here or elsewhere, my heart still beats with that label. Now I need to find myself, beneath the labels. For a great many years of my time as a mom, I focused only on that part of me. Honestly, between having babies and moving around, because of military orders, there wasn’t much time or energy available to focus on anything BUT being a mom and military spouse. Then one day I discovered that I had a voice and that all those schedules I’d been writing and all the morning memos I’d put together might, in some way, benefit others.

Once I decided to speak people starting telling me that they believed in the good of my voice, that it had great purpose and that it, surely, shouldn’t be silenced. So I started to write and I started to podcast. Immediately people said, “more!”. I rearranged schedules and found time to pick my own brain for what information my years of raising children, moving around, organizing a household of many and living as a single-parent, might be useful to others and began to write shows, blogs and even magazine articles. I began to wear new labels-Published, paid, writer/working mom/podcaster/blogger/organizer/motivator, all of them empowering and beautiful. People started sending me other labels-”McGyver of Food”/”Relentlessly Optimistic”/”Super Mom”/”The Martha Stewart of Holiday Projects”…Soon my labels were vast and I enjoyed them all. I believed I could continue to juggle them all and that they each identified me in a certain way. Now, I have to gather all the pieces of me that have been stuck to each of these labels and put the puzzle together. I’m naming each of these things so that I can step back, read them all and see that just because I removed one label doesn’t change the WHO of what I am-that I am still whole and full of purpose and that I must continue to believe in what God has given me.

This is all important stuff, this self talk. I must hold my own hand and pull myself from the brink of the cliff of this identity crisis. I must own my own being and purpose and decide to move forward, no matter what bleakness or unknown a day may bring.

We must all remember that we are whole beings, no matter the labels we’ve come to depend on or associate with. It can be hard! We tend to decide that we ARE the label. We are so much more!

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Plans? What Plans?

July 2, 2011

I’ve always been a planner. I thrive on setting a schedule and holding to it. Knowing what’s coming and how it’s going to happen is how I’ve lived my adult life and how I’ve run my household, even creating a daily Morning Memo so that everyone in the house could wake to the plan of the day and know what was coming and what was expected of them.

If there’s one lesson I’m being forced to learn and adopt in all this change is to let go of the control of planning my day. Every day I wake to wondering what’s coming and when. I’m getting better at rolling with it. But it doesn’t mean I don’t still want it. So, I set a plan in my head and then have to make new plans as things change.

Today the plan was that Clay would pick the kids up and head out to his parents’ for the week. There ended up being too many loose ends in SD for him to leave yet. So now I’m filling the day for the kids and figuring out tomorrow too. Right now they are enjoying the pool and later it’s a rousing trip to Target for a few essentials. This evening I get to go to dinner with 2 girl friends while a brave and compassionate husband watches all the kiddos. That is Good Stuff!

Here’s to learning to live outside our comfort zone and roll with what the Gypsy Wind blows our way.

Doing the Dance of the Children-With or Without a Plan~

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The Question of Social Graces-A Conversation Between Me and Max

June 9, 2011

This morning, I was driving the kiddos to school and Max asked me this, thought-provoking, question;

“How do people just know what to say and what to do, without practicing or rehearsing?”

I asked what he meant and this was his example;

“Like when you’re at a big, fancy dinner and the guy in charge stands up and says, ‘Thank you for coming. Now eat!’ Then they all say ‘Thank you’ and start eating. How did they know to say ‘Thank you’? How do people know what to do and say?”.

Ah ha! This is what I told him;

It’s called learning Social Graces. As you go through life and you go to more events and meet more people, you learn what to say in each situation and then you’re able to take it with you to the next situation. It’s something you learn as you grow and get older because as you move through your life, you have more experiences and learn more things. These are the things that come with time and age. Don’t worry! You’ll learn them. We all do!”.

Then I drove the rest of the way to school and work, thinking of all the situations I’d been in over my lifetime that taught me just what to say or do in different situations and how many many times I fumbled it all and had to learn from feeling awkward and ungracious or ungraceful. Those lessons are tough ones, but we all learn them, piece by piece, situation by situation.

I love that my boy, who’s living with Aspergers, is noticing that there are certain things that people seem to just know and just do and that he wants to learn them, no doubt to help make being in social settings less anxious or even less confusing. I wish I’d understood that I was going to learn as I went and that I was OK not automatically knowing each of the proper things that need to be done in every social situation! I would have certainly had less anxiety and felt a little more at ease. I sure hope he does!

Doing the Dance of the Children and Hoping To Do it With Grace~

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Letting Go of “Normal”

March 24, 2011

Normal-it’s what we all strive for. It’s what we’re “supposed” to be. It’s all the people around us-or so we perceive. Normal is what my kids said today’s lunches were, because I included cheese puffs (never mind that they were wheat free, gluten free, contain no corn syrup or msg) and trail mix.

Normal-we all think it’s pretty important.

Well, it’s what I’m needing to let go of. I chuckle at myself for even saying that because, really, when have I EVER been “normal”? I’m the oldest of 9 children, I was a single, teen mom and have gone on to have a grand total of 9 children of my own. None of that fits society’s views of “normal”.

But surely my kids are normal. They’re all good-looking, read just fine, present themselves in a “normal” fashion when out-and-about, play sports and go to private schools where, if anything, everyone is normal or above normal. Geesh! Normal is certainly what my kids are.

Yeah right! As I’m being forced into clearer vision and thinking, I realize that my kids have always been slightly outside the societal norm. My oldest has chosen to pursue all of her higher education in faith-based schools-certainly not the norm for most. My oldest son struggled mightily with what “normal” was supposed to be. He always had strong ideas on what was right and what was wrong and that you should always be choosing to do what was right. I look back, with a heavy heart when I think of a note he wrote in 6th grade, telling his father and I that he was grateful for the Catholic education he was receiving, but that he was really having a very hard time with not having any friends. We encouraged him and pushed him through. He struggled with grades because of poor handwriting and downward-spiraling self esteem. He became angry and aggressive. And then God stepped in and introduced us to the right environment and peer group for him and within a few months he became happy, full of life and by all means, “normal” once again. Hmmm, environment changed everything. Changing our perception of where he “should” be or what sports he “should” be playing and trusting that we couldn’t provide all the answers, changed his whole life.

I could go on down the line, describing each of my children and the ways in which I perceive them as “normal” and the ways in which they are so much more than that. But really, I now need to focus on my 7th child. My 8yr old son.

I look back to bringing him home after his birth and how sensitive he was to all his environmental stimuli. He was coming to a home with 6 older siblings. 6 boisterous, outspoken and noisy siblings and this didn’t work well for him. Every time someone yelled or ran through the house with happy screeches, he would shake and cry. He couldn’t sit in the baby swing. The movement seemed to terrify him. TERRIFY! He only slept if he was directly on me or swaddled in my blanket or clothing (I learned to cover him in things that smelled of me). I asked questions of people I knew who worked in special education or had children with challenges of their own. But little by little we all seemed to develop coping mechanisms. I noticed that he started to become noisy if everything around him was noisy. I learned to tell him to look me in the eye when I was giving him directions and to have him repeat what I’d said. I learned to assign a number to each task and ask him to go through the numbers. I learned that riding a bike was frightening for him but that he could ride a scooter like nobody’s business. I learned that his fine-motor skills were low for his age and we stopped trying to buy shoes with laces. So, we learned to try to make it through each day with a minimum of challenge. But not everyone is his mom and not everyone is so accommodating or patient (I use “patient” loosely when describing myself) and he started to have real challenges in the classroom last year. He couldn’t grasp the concept of getting things done in a certain timeframe. His thoughts on any given subject were too big for the classroom discussions and he just can’t NOT say what’s going through his head. So he became frustrated at not completing things on time and with the fact that he has poor handwriting and he just decided to give up on doing the work all together. He started hiding his work or destroying it. This meant that his grades plummeted and he was put on academic probation. ~sigh~ It was just a downward spiral. Then he started 2nd grade. New teacher, new year. And she worked REALLY REALLY hard with him. We kept our communication open and discussed various ways to help him function within the classroom setting and finally we discussed getting him into counseling so that he could have better tools to draw from to perform successfully. His grades have been up. He’s not hiding work. Both the teacher and I, realized that he is more than capable with any of the work placed before him.  All in all, it’s a better year. But through the open communication between teacher, parent and counselor, it was suggested (strongly) that he be tested for Asperger’s. While I wasn’t totally surprised, I was challenged. I cried for 3 days. Not for myself, but for my child who possibly needed something more, something different and had been pushed through with the hope that he would finally “get it”. I spoke with a couple people and then had the testing scheduled.

We don’t have a full report back yet, but I’ve been given a partial report and he seems to fall, quite solidly, in the spectrum for Asperger’s. Yesterday I was told that according to the tests, he has an IQ of 156 (I placed a link here because until yesterday, I didn’t know what any IQ scores meant and am betting that most people are in the same boat I was) and that it’s suggested that he be placed in a more challenging school environment. This is where I have to fall back on what I learned with my older son (who was never tested for an “disorders” and has no diagnosis of any) about trusting that environment makes all the difference and where I have to let go of “normal”. I want what’s best for each of my kids. But I’m also having a tough time letting go. I will continue to read, research, talk and learn and I will continue to be human and fight my own ideas of “normal”. And, you can bet I’ll be talking about the whole thing as it unfolds.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Fun In Preschool with Rainbows-Skittle Count (count & taste the rainbow)

March 17, 2011

March is all about rainbows, the beginning of spring and leprechauns.

Here’s a fun way to review the #’s you’ve already learned.

Give each child a 1/2 Dixie sized cup of Skittles and a paper plate

Have them gently pour the cup out, onto the plate

Have the kids separate the Skittles into piles of each color and then ask them to count one color at a time, moving through the colors of the rainbow. We found that using 1/2 a cup was a good amount because they were familiar with those #’s. Any more than that was confusing for them (we did this 2 days in a row, as with all of our projects, and on day 1 we filled the cups and it didn’t work well). The BEST was when we got to Blue. There are no blue Skittles in a regular pack of Skittles, so it was a great lesson in “0″ and “none”.

We went around the class through each of the colors, charted the kids’ answers and then totaled each child’s Skittles. We then talked about less and more and left the chart up for a couple of days.

Doing the Dance of the Children~

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Learning Lessons #8:Guiding Our Children Through the Tough Lessons of Life

January 6, 2011

As a parent, one of our biggest and often toughest jobs is teaching our kiddos the lessons they need to lead a successful, happy and productive life. It would all be so much “easier” and “peaceful” if we could just take the hands-off approach and give in to every whim, want and fit. But that wouldn’t be parenting. That would simply be existing. Sometimes I’m tempted to exist because I’ve taught the same lessons over and over with each child.

Lately I’ve had a morning issue with one of my younger kiddos who’s learning (or needing to learn) some time management skills. Every morning he drags behind in the routine and often forgets to put things into his backpack or to brush his teeth. This means I’m constantly reminding and rushing him. Often times all the other kids will be in the car and he’ll still have no shoes on, no backpack ready and his teeth are unbrushed. It makes me want to pull my hair! I’m trying different ideas to keep him on task, but so far none have worked. I’m getting ready to make him a check list that he can carry with him in the mornings.

This morning when everyone was in the car and I had to come back into the house to move him along, I handed him his backpack and he started complaining that he was cold and needed a sweatshirt and was thirsty and needed water. I decided to teach a lesson about being uncomfortable because of your own actions. I told him that he’d just have to get a drink at school and that he’d have to feel a little cold today because he didn’t get his uniform together in a timely manner and that every time he feels cold today that he will have a chance to remember that if he had gotten things together on time that he’d be warm.

Harsh? Maybe! But I’m betting he’ll think about it. And for all of you who are thinking what a mean M.O.M. I am……we live in San Diego for goodness sake! It’s not like he’s in Pittsburgh fighting snow in a tee shirt!

So, lesson #8 is that as a parent, we must remember that it’s our job to continually guide our kids through the tough lessons of life. Ultimately we will be building a stronger future for our little ones.

Have a great day~

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Cutting Up My Cards

December 23, 2010


While I was out shopping, I picked up a new wallet for myself. So this morning I was switching everything over when I decided it was finally time to get rid of those cards in my wallet.

I haven’t used a credit card in several months. I made a decision to use only cash for all my grocery shopping, filling up the cars and personal shopping. Each payday I go to the bank, take out the budgeted amount, divvy it into marked envelopes and off I go, staying on budget and being more conscience of what I’m buying. But…I left the cards in my wallet, like a security blanket. It was silly, really, because they’d been canceled and weren’t even there for “emergency usage”, they just simply made me feel better.

This is the first Christmas that I can EVER remember that I’m going out to the stores, cash-in-hand. I know exactly what I’m spending and I won’t have any remorse come January. It’s been a really great experience! A difficult transition, in the beginning, yes, but SO worth it in the long-run!

So today, I grabbed the scissors and the garbage can and I made confetti of all those useless and enslaving cards! New wallet and no security blanket!

Doing the Dance of the Children and Staying on Budget~

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