7 Essential P-Attitudes for Every Parent
by Susie E. Caron © 12/27/14
With the approaching New Year's celebrations and new year's resolutions, I recommend these 7 Parenting Attitudes that, when adopted, will help you to navigate being a parent with more ease and success in the coming year. They are permission, patience, persistence, possession, plan, purpose and pardon.
1. Permission: I give you permission to be the parent. To do this you stop looking over your shoulder to see who is judging you. Short of child abuse, nobody really cares. So do your job and don't worry about the judgement of others. At the end of your kids childhood, you are the only one who will care how you did. Besides, your kids really do want you to parent with all the wisdom you've gained over the years. They are counting on you. They want someone to be in charge. If you're not, they will be and that paradoxically, makes them afraid and more likely to try to strong-arm you. So to be the parent you want to be.
2 Patience: Be as patient with your children as you will want them to be with you - when you are old and infirm. Enough said.
3 Persistence: Never give up! Parents often read a book or get some 'advice' from someone, try it once and when "it" doesn't work, they give up. Children need to know you will not give up on them. If you want them in bed, get them to bed. If you want them to do chores, see to it that they do them. Do not give up! Stand your ground as though you have nothing but time to see to it that they grow up learning the important lessons you wish to teach them.
4.Possess the land: OK, You need to set this record straight. Whether you rent or own your home, you have to make certain that the kids know for a certainty that it is only because of your good favor toward them, that you allow them to live in your home. It's not theirs. It's yours. Getting this clear will help with a lot of issues.
5. Plan: That's right, PLAN ahead. Decide with the week will look like. Who will do what chores. When the fun things are scheduled and how you expect the kids to behave in each and every situation. Then don't forget to let them know what's coming and what you expect of them. Also, don't forget to thank them
6 Purpose (ful): When you find you have to correct your child(ren) make the conversation, consequences or outcome purposeful. If all you do is get angry, yell, banish kids to their room for the month, or take away every worldly possession every time, after a while, none of it will do any good. Actions like these, will not change behaviors. Make sure the consequence fits. It needs to fit the child's 'infraction' as well as the child's developmental ability to understand. After the consequence, welcome the child back into the family fun so they know they are loved.
7. Pardon: Please, pardon. Pardon mistakes, infractions, omissions, and behaviors in yourself, your children and your spouse. Do not carry a list to remember. Do not heap each mistake, one upon another. Forgive, forget and instead of reminding others how they have 'done it again' tell them you love them, believe in them, trust them and really know that they are trying to do the very best that they can. That's all any of us can do. At any time, we are all doing the best we can.
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Have a Wonderful New Year!
Hugs and Blessings
Susie E. Caron
A Pony for Christmas –a True Story.
By Susie E. Caron © 12/22/2014
I prayed for two things as a child. First, I wanted a pony, every day of my young life. My parents tried to tell me that I couldn’t have one, but I prayed for a pony every birthday, holiday and especially at Christmas. I also prayed to get married and become a Mommy.
I grew up in a small suburb in NJ, just east of Philadelphia. Our Dutch colonial home sat on a small yard with its own driveway and tiny, detached garage. I understand now, that there was no room for a pony, but not back then. I just knew that if I prayed and believed, God would somehow deliver a pony to me. My parents grew concerned about my prayers. They explained that the hay and supplies needed to feed a pony would not fit in our garage. Nothing they said overrode my faith in God and His love for me. I just knew that God keeps His promise to answer our prayers. I anticipated He would answer mine.
In exasperation, my parents finally invited our pastor over to speak with me. He explained that God always answers every prayer, but that He would not go against my parents’ wishes and God would not oppose their decision. I understood, but I also knew that God would answer my prayers somehow, someday.
After college, I married. My husband and I moved from state to state following our careers. We both wanted a small farm, so in 1973, we bought a camp to renovate and erected a barn. My prayer for ‘a pony’ appeared to be answered when we began purchasing horses. Over the years we bought more horses and in 1984 I started a boarding stable. In the 10 years that followed, I opened and operated a riding school. But that’s not the end of this story.
One winter day, just before Christmas, in the early 1980’s, a huge 18 wheeled horse- shipping truck pulled up just outside our Vermont farm. I anticipated its arrival, but nothing prepared me for what I would see. I heard its air brakes first, but as I jumped up to look, the exterior, flashing lights made it appear more like a UFO had landed. I grabbed my coat and hurried into the crisp, cold night air. The stars were out but obscured by the brilliant lights from the van.
A man climbed down from the driver’s side and sauntered toward the mid-section of the vehicle. He pushed on something and a large ramp, hinged at the bottom, slowly lowered itself, until the top bumped hard on the ground. Warm lights illuminated the interior with its hay and pine shavings strewn about on the floor. I could see parts of stalls and woven butt gates, closed to keep the occupants in their own places, but nothing stirred. No swinging tails could be seen or horses heard neighing or stomping in anticipation. Tonight it seemed empty.
The man said, “Hi there.” And added “This is my last stop today. I asked “Have you brought something for me?” He nodded, disappeared into the van and returned, in stark silhouette. The man and a shaggy creature, with a white mane and tail, walked through the generous opening & ‘trip-trapped’ down the ramp. This surreal moment ended when the man handed me the lead rope and some papers to sign. I thanked him. He nodded, turned off the interior lights, climbed back into the cab and drove away. Excited, and tired, I settled the tiny pony into her 12x12 box stall with sweet hay and water. Then I returned to our house and crawled into bed, but I barely slept.
The next day I couldn’t wait for my kids to wake up. I told them, simply, that there was something new in the barn. They quickly dressed to see what it was. We walked through the rambling house, the tack room, and into the adjacent barn. Inside, I turned on the lights. My son’s horse and his stable mates called to us from their stalls, but the pony didn’t make a sound. I couldn’t see her either. Momentarily I wondered if I had only dreamed of her last night, or if something awful had happened. I didn’t say anything but I worried a bit about what I’d find when I opened the door to the stall. My worries appeared needless, because inside, at the far back wall stood the little Shetland. She casually turned her head to look at us with her liquid brown eyes. Our kids could see her now through the open stall door.
My 5 year old daughter spoke first, “Oh, look! Look. A pony.”
I asked, “What do you think? Do you like her?”
She said “Yes. Whose is it?”
I replied, “She is yours, if you’d like to have her.”
She said “For me?”
I said “Yes. She is here for you.”
With that, my daughter hurried into the stall and wrapped her arms around the pony’s neck. My son joined her and together they stroked her shaggy, winter coat.
As they talked to the pony and with each other, a wave of love and gratitude arose within me. I realized that God had indeed answered both of my childhood prayers. He did bring me the pony, for which I’d dreamed and prayed, and He also answered my second prayer – to make me a Mommy – when He entrusted me with these two beautiful children.
“He gives the barren woman a home, making her the joyful mother of children. Praise the Lord.” Psalm 113:9
"Pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. I Thessalonians 5:17&18.
Twee’ Means You & Me
Susie E. Caron
Bedtime Routines that Work.
By Susie E. Caron © 12/15/14
Do you wrangle with your kids at night to go to bed and get to sleep? If so, they probably have a difficult time winding down. We all live such busy over scheduled lives. Parents often find themselves pushing children through the evening necessities with very little time to catch their breath. However, making the time to settle kids, before you try to tuck them in, is essential. In fact, if you try to put them to bed without ample calming activities, you will spend more time struggling with them than you really need to. Put these suggestions into practice and you will find it much easier to get your kids in bed and asleep.
Start a Wind-Down time before bed.
Winding down needs to begin about at least one hour before bed. First turn the heat down slightly. (I’ll explain why you do this below.) Take away all electronics because the lights and rapid movements stimulate the brain. For the next 20-30 minutes, watch a nature show together, or part of a good movie (run a bit more each night.) You could alternatively use this time to read with your kids. Take turns reading short books or pages of a good book together.
Cool down their body temperatures.
At the end of 30 minutes, put young children in the bath tub for 15-20 minutes. Make sure the water is actually a little cooler than usual. (Don’t put them in a shower, unless you don't have a bath tub. Showers tend to wake them up a bit.) Bath tub - play time, actually calms children down. As the water cools, so do their bodies, which is essential biologically to help get them ready to sleep.
If they are really young, watch them play in the water for about 15 minutes. Or, sit in the bathroom and read a magazine while they play. (Older kids can get a shower if they choose.) The point is that their body temperature needs to cool down for them to start to get sleepy. Next, dry them and tuck them into bed. As they warm up in bed, they will get sleepy. That’s a great time to lay down with them and read a short story to little kids. (If your kids are a bit older, tuck them in and allow 1/2 hour for reading by themselves, then come back, say goodnight and turn the lights out.)
Help kids to set the stage for good dreams.
Before you say good night, ask your children to make up something they want to dream about. Help them to tell you what they will see, hear, feel, taste, and smell. They need to use all five senses to implant an effective good dream. That will help set the tone for good dreams every night. Kids who make a practice of this tell me they don’t have bad dreams any more.
Finally, Pray with your kids.
Do you pray with your children? I cannot think of a better way to end the day and ensure sweet dreams than to pray with them. Here is a short prayer for you and your kids.
Thank you O Lord for this day
For all I did in work and play
Help me to be as good as I can be
And only good dreams for me to see
Then Tomorrow I will say
Bless me Jesus on this day!
Thank you for reading my Between You & Me Blog. Please share this article on your favorite social media sites and comment below: How do you get your kids into bed and to sleep?
Twee' Means You & Me
Susie E. Caron
3 Ways to Get Your Kids Out of Bed and off to School.
Susie E. Caron (c) 12/7/14
Do you have kids who do not like to wake up and go to school? There are lots of reasons they might stay in bed, or not cooperate in the morning rush. However unless they have a fever, or a virus that has them living in the bathroom for the day, the reasons are not as important as how to change their behavior. These 3 simple ideas really work.
#1: If all your kids are resistant. Sing! That's right, sing a lovely morning song, or your favorite nursery rhyme, or a popular song. If you do so while you turn on lights, remove their covers, and welcome them into the day with your own version of cheerfulness, they will get out of bed. At some point, (such as when you are in the car with them) suggest that if they don't want you singing then they are welcome to get out of bed, get dressed and get ready for school before you begin.
Idea #2: If you have a few children, but only one morning-resistant child, ask that child this: "What would help you to get out of bed and get ready for school?" Let your child know you are absolutely sincere in asking this question. The children I've known haven't asked for trips to Disney for this. They usually want a special food, or opportunity to play an electronic game or watch a TV show. When they tell you what would help, agree to provide it. But also explain that you will do your part and you expect that this child will also do their part without difficulty. If the child doesn't hold up to the bargain, then the treat is removed until the next day. One parent I know asked her child, who replied, "I want to go to the library with you on Saturdays to get books." I'd say that was a win, win for both parent and child.
#3 Make them breakfast. I know you are busy, and rushed and making breakfast does not seem like a reasonable idea. However, all the research about eating breakfast proves it’s a win, win as well for you both. Cooking bacon, whole grain pancakes, or even English muffin pizzas, makes the whole house smell wonderful and that will entice your little ones to get up and going. Breakfast that tastes good, and is something your kids enjoy, plus your active presence while they eat, also gives them a happy send off to their day at school. We both know that is what you want for them everyday.
How have you tackled the "I don't want to get out of bed" difficulty? Share your experience here because you are among friends. Also click to share this article on your favorite social media links. Thank you.
Twee' Means You & Me
Susie E. Caron
Susie E. Caron MA,
Author, Blogger, Podcaster,
Christian, Wife, & Mother, helps build parent-child relationships, 1 blog, book & podcast at a time.
Welcome! I recently retired from combined careers in teaching, psychotherapy, and parent coaching to spend more time writing.
When I'm not busy creating books or articles, you might find me looking for dark chocolate or riding my beautiful horse Apple in the woods and fields of Vermont.
These articles are for educational and self-help purposes only and are not intended as psychotherapy.
If you experience unusual symptoms or discomfort please see your medical or mental health practitioner.
No patent liability is assumed for use of the information contained. The author disclaims any responsibility for loss or risk for use or application of this material.
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Blog Reviews & Thank You!
July 13 at 7:17pm ·
Just wanted to say that I love your posts about the different ways to connect/relate/understand your child. It has given me a new approach towards understanding my daughter and allowing HER to tell me how she feels instead of me suggesting to her how she should feel. Thanks Susie!