Friday, December 7, 2018

Breathing Through The Holidays

How do you feel when you think about all the activities of the holidays? Are you taking calm, deep breaths or shallow, short breaths? Is your heart racing when you remember all the things you want to get done?

Sometimes your own high expectations rob you from enjoying yourself. Take a step back and consider your top priorities for the holidays.

Breathing Deeply Together

Families spend more time together at the holidays. How does the rhythm of your family change with your kids on a break from school?

Do you have time to slow down and catch your breath? Or is there additional tension that leads you to holding your breath as you navigate through? Are your family gatherings stressful due to taking on more than your share?

Mindfully deciding on how to spend your time and energy over the holidays can increase your joy. When you think of your own childhood what are your fondest holiday memories? What holiday traditions would you like your kids to remember when they are your age? Do your favorite memories include any of the following …?

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Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Improving Family Relationships By Positively Shifting Your Energy

How do you feel about your relationship with each of your children? Are you feeling warmly connected, coolly distant or somewhere in between?

Relationships are dynamic. They change over time as both you and your children grow and change. These gradual changes can be hard to notice until one day you realize you are not happy with the way you and your kids are relating.

Signs of Struggling

It might be that you are feeling overwhelmed and underappreciated. Or perhaps you feel the only way you can get your kids to listen to you is if you yell.

Maintaining warm, loving relationships with your children is not easy. If you are struggling, you are not alone. Below are answers parents gave on a Priceless Parenting quiz for their biggest parenting challenge:

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Thursday, November 29, 2018

Improving Family Relationships By Being Fully Engaged

Think about a time when someone was completely engaged in listening to you. Where were you? How did you feel?

Now think about a time when you were trying to talk to someone but they were distracted. What did you do when you noticed they weren’t really paying attention? How did you feel?

There is a huge difference between being fully present and being half there. It’s hard to fake being present when your mind is somewhere else. Others pick up on your distraction even if they don’t openly acknowledge it.

Being Engaged Versus Being Distracted

Like all people, you go between states of being engaged and distracted all day. Your connection to your children and your ability to do your best parenting is affected by which state you are in.

When you are distracted, you are thinking about things other than what’s currently happening. Like a distracted driver, you are wandering around oblivious to the subtleties of the situation. If you have young children, being distracted is especially dangerous because they can quickly get in serious trouble.

These are some characteristics of being distracted:

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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Raising Kids Who Blossom: Priceless Parenting For Healthy Growth

Raising Kids Who Blossom by Kathy Slattengren, parenting expert and author of award-winning Priceless Parenting’s online parenting classes, offers healthy parenting strategies. Using these ideas will help your children blossom – growing into their best selves.

You will learn parenting approaches that work well based on research and use in actual families. Key elements for guiding and encouraging your kids are explained using real-life stories. You’ll also discover parenting techniques to avoid – tempting though they may be! When you put in place these best practices, you can expect a lot more joy and a lot less yelling and nagging.

Raising Kids Who Blossom covers a wide range of topics. You'll find parenting advice for things like:

  • getting your kids to respond the first time you ask
  • guiding your children to solve their own problems
  • standing firm without arguing
  • helping your kids develop habits to succeed in school
  • setting limits on digital media usage
  • giving your children appropriate responsibility
  • noticing red flag behaviors that indicate serious problems
  • defining and practicing your family’s top moral values
  • practicing essential, stress reducing self-care
  • following your parenting intuition
Questions at the end of each section help you determine how to use the ideas with your own family.

The book includes 20 positive approaches for responding to your children’s misbehavior. Since each child is different, you’ll be able to find a response that works best for you.

You’ll also learn how to help your kids build life skills. These skills will allow them to successfully launch as capable young adults. Whether your kids are toddlers or teens, you’ll be helping them grow into responsible, caring people.

Parenting can be a pleasure or a pain. When you have the right tools, you will experience more pleasure. Raising Kids Who Blossom gives you tools for effectively handling day-to-day struggles. This book will help you guide your kids to blossom into their own beautiful, brilliance!

Friday, June 22, 2018

Ready-To-Go Fun Art Projects For Kids

Do your kids love doing art projects? If they enjoy creating art, it's a wonderful way to spend time away from digital devices. The time consuming part for you is coming up with the ideas and getting the supplies.

Outside The Box Creation makes your life easier by pulling all the supplies and instructions together in one box. You can try out a box like the one below to see how it works. If your kids enjoy it, they offer monthly subscriptions where you'll receive a new project each month. Creating fun art projects with your kids just got a lot easier!

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Setting Healthy Boundaries Within Your Family

Healthy boundaries are essential to living together harmoniously as a family. Good boundaries are like fences defining the edges of what is acceptable and unacceptable. Being sensitive to everyone’s boundaries is essential for smooth sailing.

How do you know when you’ve crossed a boundary? If you are paying attention to the other person’s reaction, they’ll often let you know. For example, children being tickled may be laughing but then it becomes too much for them and they say “stop”. They’ve gone from feeling comfortable to uncomfortable. When you stop tickling, you honor their boundary.

Noticing Personal Boundaries

Before you can honor someone’s boundaries, you must notice them. Megan realized her son Alex was sensitive to various scents when he started complaining about smells. The smell of the laundry detergent bothered Alex so they switched to unscented laundry detergent and dryer sheets. Megan stopped wearing perfume or using hair spray - all way too smelly! She also changed to using unscented candles.

While the rest of the family was fine with these scents, Alex’s boundary for acceptable smells was much narrower. All these little adjustments helped Alex stay in his comfortable zone.

Different people have different boundaries and tolerances for stretching those boundaries. One mom realized their family’s schedule felt too crazy when the kids had more than one extracurricular activity at a time. They decided to limit their kids to one activity at a time.

In the spring their son wanted to join both baseball and the school play which overlapped by a couple weeks. They carefully considered the impact this would have and decided that although it crossed the boundary it would be doable. Other families may have decided it would have stretched them too thin.

Recognizing a Boundary Breach

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Friday, May 25, 2018

A Mom's Story of Her Teen's Drug Addiction

Susán Hoemke dreamt of a perfect family - a loving husband and four beautiful children.  When their oldest son, Hayden, became addicted to drugs, she struggled with how to respond.  How could this possibly be happening to their upper-class, Christian family?  

By the time Hayden was 10-years-old, she had dreams warning her of the Hayden’s problems.  While her subconscious recognized what was happening, consciously it was too troubling to acknowledge.  Even after entering Hayden into a $30,000 wilderness camp program for troubled teens, she was shocked to hear the counselors refer to him as a drug addict.  

Healing Scarred Hearts is Susán’s story of dealing with Hayden’s drug addiction, stealing, sex-offender arrest, jail time and ultimately his death.   This story will help you think about how your response to a child’s red flag behaviors may effect the outcome.