(Us with Governor Nathan Deal)
A couple of years ago, we were in the doctor’s office, waiting for the boys to get their regular checkups. My youngest, 2 at the time, started playing with another 2-year-old and they were having fun. My oldest son, then 6, was there too. The other mother remarked about how well-mannered my boys seemed to be – how well they spoke, how well they acted. She then expressed concern over her son …. and the way he would swear. Huh? Yes, she was concerned about her 2-year-old swearing, and asked me how I kept my kids from doing it. Once my surprise wore off, sadness set in for this young lady, who truly wanted her child to do better, and seemed lost to the fact that she was probably the very reason for the swearing. What I mean is, any child, especially one that young, is going to reflect whatever he is exposed to. You, as a parent, are responsible for that exposure.
That interaction caused me to think … about what I expose my boys too. Of course I consciously avoid the bad. But I want to make a pointed decision to expose them to the good; to expose them to:
– People who make them think, and make them express themselves
– People who have achieved great things, from whom they can learn
– Situations where they may be unsure or “out of their element”, so it can become their element
– Those who are less fortunate, to maintain a heart of compassion and love
Here’s to seeds of greatness being shown … through exposure.
I guess this is sharing week for me, lol. Another great read I’ve found, to really help me better prioritize as a mom. I mean, all the activities and things I do “for my kids” . . . is it really for them, or to help me feel better about the life I’m giving them? Food for thought. In the meantime, enjoy this article by Erin Kurt.
What do you think matters most to your children? You driving them to lessons and practices, or is it the smile and hug you greet them with after school? If you guessed the latter, you are correct.
Sixteen years of teaching and giving the same assignment every Mother’s Day has led me to the exact same conclusion. You see, every Mother’s Day I would ask my students to give me advice on being a mother. They were to think about things their mother or guardian did for or with them that made them feel happy or loved. The classroom would go silent as the students wrote intensely for longer than they had ever written before. Often smiles would appear on their faces as they reflected on the happy experiences they were remembering. After reading their responses I would add to my list all the ideas they mentioned. Surprisingly, many of the responses were the same. Year after year, in every country I taught, and in every type of demographic, the students were saying the same things and had the same message: It’s the small things that their mothers did that meant the most and that they remembered.
Continue reading at: http://www.lifehack.org/articles/lifestyle/the-top-10-things-children-really-want-their-parents-to-do-with-them.html
I told you Monday about how we got into the circus for the low low. Now I’ll tell you how I kept quiet a couple of little boys who eat for sport … and want everything in sight.
– Feed them – good – before we go inside. And I don’t mean in the food court of the venue, where prices are sky high. We stroll past Chick Fil A or another restaurant where it’s food they like, they can fill up, and it doesn’t break the bank.
– Strike up a deal, almost immediately. Their eyes will glaze over at the toys and gadgets they could buy. Then hamburgers, hot dogs and pizza, oh my! I scope out the prices and find something they can both SHARE. Don’t you want Popcorn? Bingo. Redirected.
– Bring in a few goodies of your own, if you can. A snack pack of cheezits or something similar can go a long way after the salt and butter of the popcorn have worn off.
– Eat slowly. Doesn’t always work, but I try to slow them down.
– Give them something to look forward to. No, I’m not going to buy any other items (gotta stick to my budget). But when we get home we’ll have a special snack and talk about our fun time.
My tricks don’t always work, but use a few together … and you’ve got a winner.
Yep, I did it my way. I took my princes to see the circus the only way I know how – economically. Let me give you a few tricks of the trade to save money on ticketed events.
– Always google the word “discounts” or “coupons” with whatever event you’re going to. In this case I searched for “circus discounts” and found out about an awesome program at the local library. Read 5 books, get a free child’s ticket with an adult purchase. Bam.
– Sign up online to receive emails from the company. I’ve done this several times and gotten great details re: early sales, ways to save, etc. I signed up for the birthday club from Legoland and got free entry for each boy during his birthday month.
– Facebook. I sign up for the company’s facebook page, and tap into some of my “frugal” networks to see what deals they’ve unearthed. Our local paper also has a column on seeing Atlanta cheap. I stay on top of that.
– Check out all of the savings websites. Groupon, ScoreBig, Living Social and Goldstar are just a few. I scour these sites to compare which deal is the best.
We loved gaining admission, paying less than normal.
Coming soon … how I saved money once we got inside.
On Monday I talked about some fun things you can do to really enjoy each other as a married couple, when the kids aren’t around. Well, most of us don’t have built in sitter services anytime we want them (though my incredible sisters-in-law are the next best thing). So what can we do to keep the fires burning when we have our little people in tow?
– Put on their favorite movie, go sit in another room, cuddle and talk.
– Put them to bed, surprise your honey with their favorite snack, and put on a movie
– Hide in the bedroom and have a full conversation (not my best idea, but sometimes you just have to)
– Begin each day greeting each other with a hug or kiss
– Did I mention sleep? Sometimes we have to do this in shifts. Technically, it doesn’t count since we’re not doing it together. But we’ll be better for each other after a good nap.
We walked hand in hand. We laughed. We talked. And most importantly, we slept. Yes, that describes the sometimes romantic but mostly relieving Valentine’s weekend we, as parents of young boys, enjoyed. In years past I’ve hyped up Valentine’s, expecting flowers and a night of fairytale romance. And then there were two. Two young boys, that is. And my dreamy and sometimes unattainable thoughts of grandeur dissolved into a reality consisting of a messy house, a tired body and a busy husband. But I’ve figured out a way to still keep that fire burning (most of the time). Here’s a look at how to do it when you can drop the little ones off with relatives. Thursday I’ll look at how you can do it with the kids around (gotta be creative, but it can be done).
– Go visit the place where your hubby proposed. Grab each of your favorite snack, sit and reminisce.
– Fire up the Nintendo or Xbox, and play the games that the kids hog all week. It’s so much fun!
– Go see that movie you’ve been dying to see.
– Have a wonderful dinner, complete with uninterrupted conversation. So that’s what it feels like to finish a thought?
– Wait. Listen. What do you hear? Nothing. Enjoy that sound.
– And me and my hubby’s favorite? Sleep. 😉
My youngest son and I are opposites. I’m outgoing, he refuses to communicate. I’m pretty affectionate, he’s … not. When it’s time to be calm and reserved, he thinks it’s time to get buck wild. Though we are alike in one critically important way – we both love chocolate and macaroni and cheese. Lol. But I digress. Let’s just say, with two completely different personalities, there may not seem to be a lot of common ground.
Yet there is in one very important way. Love. I love my sweet four year old baby boy. I love his little fat juicy hands and cheeks. I love the way he talks. I love his smile. I love to see him run, happily playing, without a care in the world (even if he’s wearing me out). I love to hear him sing and laugh. I love to see him lick his lips and rub his belly for his favorite foods. And I love to cuddle with him.
As a parent I’m learning that it’s not about trying to get my kids to fit in a certain mold for me, or about seeing how “like me” they can be. It’s about loving them for who they are, as the precious gifts God meant them to be. And I do love me some him.
I had a harrowing day. Dentist appointment, school, business calls in the middle of grammar assignments, grocery shopping, son that ran buck wild around the store (there truly is not another way to describe it), basketball practice, baths, prayers and bed. To say I am exhausted would be an understatement. As my mind wanders over my day, it becomes fixed on one point … one little 4-year-old point to be exact. My youngest son (the one who ran around the store and screamed, crazy and carefree). It took all of my energy – mental, physical, emotional – to maintain composure. I warned. I was firm. I threatened. I finally pleaded. Nothing worked to calm him down. He wasn’t upset mind you … just having fun. I felt the other shoppers’ eyes. Some were scathing. A few came over and told me how “cute” he was (not quite sure how they meant it). A few times I wanted to pretend I didn’t know him. But as I think back over it all, I come to one conclusion … this kid is pure energy with legs. He’s loud, wild, funny, maddening, silly, frustrating and exhausting. But he’s mine. And I love him just the way he is.
Of course I can say that now … lol. But if you see me out shopping … don’t ask.
I feel like a lot of my posts are about decisions. It seems like life is decision, after decision, after decision! Some are small – what to eat for breakfast, what to wear today, makeup or no makeup. Then there are slightly more weighty decisions … what school curriculum to use, what activities to involve the kids in, do I schedule that meeting this week or next. Important decisions, yes, life or death, no. My problem is, I make some of the important decisions, out to be life or death. Do you ever catch yourself doing that? I hate it because I get stressed out about something that will work out just fine in the end. I’m not diminishing the value of moving in God’s timing or doing things when they need to be done. But sometimes, it just ain’t that serious. Let this encourage those of you who can be a bit like me. Breathe, relax, take a step back. It will all work out.
My husband posted something profound on Facebook today. It definitely bears repeating. Well said, honey.
I was getting ready to get my little man(4) ready for the day. He did not want to because he had on his superhero underwear and he knew it meant putting a clean one on. I started thinking you are not a super hero because of what you wear…which lead me to thinking about us n our relationship with god. we are not defined by what we do, have or wear. We are ‘super’ because we serve and belong to a ‘super-natural’ God. As such, it’s time we go out and be ‘super’. Rescue some one today, encourage someone today, amaze someone today, avert a crisis today, after all you are a ‘super-hero’ serving a ‘super-natural’ God! #Da-Real-Super-Heroes