parenting, Support, Uncategorized

A Fall Reminder

As fall marks the end of summer, it brings with it much anticipation too. This is especially true if you have kiddos in your world as the inevitable rhythm of a school year brings excitement and trepidation. The mix of emotions drives much worry and anxiety for parents as they impatiently wait for signs of a child finding their way both academically and socially. This is especially apparent to me at the grocery store on weekdays around 3:00. At that time, I find parents running in for quick pickups of needed items before kiddos come home from school. Most often, I can catch snippets of conversations about how kids are settling into their new routines. The length of these conversations is often brief; however, the intensity is palpable. Fall teacher conferences or mid-term grades will put much of the wondering to rest for some, while others will learn of new thoughts and potential concerns that were not even on their radar.

This can be a challenging time of year for kiddos as well as their parents. I try to remember this each fall and work to be a better friend, neighbor, co-worker, and parent. For me the season of fall serves as a reminder to provide the care and support I would like to receive should I be struggling. Learning to be generous with kindness and compassion for me and others is an ongoing goal.

Here and Now, Uncategorized

Lucky Enough

Today I feel lucky enough. There is nothing out of the ordinary going on other than a sense of contentment that has washed over me. No, things are not perfect. I have stress and worries which always remain, but today I see things with a bit more clarity and choose to ride this positive stream of thought. Catching these moments can be tricky, but when I sense one coming on, I do all I can to hold on to it, much like trying to hang on to a lovely dream from which you have been awakened too soon.

These moments create a feeling of lightness, as well as positive and hopeful energy which I know if I want it to continue I will need to stay in my mind. I choose to reject negative thoughts such as comparing myself to others and looking longingly at things that I think will make me happier. I choose to stay off social media as I know these thoughts/activities may prevent me from feeling more happiness and joy today. I choose to move through this moment on my terms with a less reactive mindset.

I remind myself that I have the choice to decide how I want to think about other people, places and things. I know that being gentle but firm in redirecting my thoughts is a skill that improves with practice. Even under incredibly stressful circumstances, I can choose how I want to think about something. Today is a lucky day.

parenting, Uncategorized

Clarifying Parenting Expectations Versus Privileges

We are all looking to find balance in our lives, families, and homes. Given our busy schedules, it is more important than ever to set ourselves up to build successes in our daily lives. When parenting, an essential component to creating more successes centers on the need to understand the difference between a parental expectation and a privilege in your home. Spending time to talk with your partner about this concept will be rewarding and prevent needless disagreements.

If you have not had this discussion, simply take a few minutes for each of you to list what you consider to be reasonable expectations as well as appropriate privileges for your child. Then come together and listen to each other without interruption or judgment. Take some time away from this subject to contemplate and come back later to discuss. It is hoped that going through this simple exploration will lead you as parents to a clearer understanding of how you each see expectations and privileges. You may not see common ground in all aspects but do not despair. This does not prevent you from beginning to create your family expectations and privileges list on all that you can agree upon. Armed with this knowledge, begin to teach your child about what you have decided to be important in your family/home.

Whatever you and your parenting partner have decided upon is a great start! Do your best to teach expectations well through consistent words/ actions and clearly define what privileges look like in your home. Please see below for some examples to get you started😊.

Examples of expectations: (taught and reinforced daily/weekly)

-follow bedtime routine

-help set and clear the table

-no television/electronic gaming on school nights

Examples of privileges: (parents control when and how long these are utilized)

-use of any and all electronic devices

-use of special craft supplies

-cooking/baking with family