Posts Tagged ‘parenting’

Over the past week, my youngest son has planted seeds with me.  He has carefully chosen seeds that he likes: watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumber, basil with the hopes of them growing into big and strong plants.  We have a plot at a community garden as well as a raised bed on our second floor balcony which my husband made.  He asked that his melon could be planted on the balcony because in the past year the animals have always gotten to the melons before we have.  He wants to protect them. He doesn’t want to have to pick them before they are ready, when they are too small and not ripe, simply to avoid having them bitten into.

 

And so with this in mind, knowing that his plants may not make it to full fruition, he planted the seeds anyway.  Knowing that there is only so much he can do to protect these plants, he patted the soil down anyway with hopes that in planting the seed and starting the growth, good things would happen.

 

And so it is with life.  We plant the seeds, knowing not all of them will make it, but hoping they will and doing what we can so that they do anyway.  We don’t give up at the start, not bothering to plant the seed.  We hold fast to our intentions, our hopes and our dreams, nurturing them with our belief in them, and in ourselves, our ability to bring them into fruition.

 

And so it is with parenting; we do what we can to bring our children up with a belief in themselves to reach their dreams, even against the odds.

 

We need to prepare the vessels that contain them.

Nourish.

Give them space.

Protect.

Remember only what is important.

Allow them to grow.

That is how we parent

 

 

Today I’m pleased to have Shel of ElfWench Studio sharing her thoughts on parenting

 

Tell us a little about your family

I live with my husband Shawn and our two kids in Sitka Alaska.  Jason aka The Squirrelman is 9 and Angelina aka The Diva is 3.  Jason is all about building things, computers, and books.  Like a lot of kids with ADHD he is scary smart.  We’re fairly sure he is going to be an engineer someday.  Angie is our creative force of nature.  She loves to dance and draw.  She will probably grow up to be a cross between Fancy Nancy, Angelina Ballerina, and  Zena Warrior Princess.  We also share our home with a spunky black cat named Midnite.

 

 

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use.

If I had to put a label on it, I would say intuitive.  We have no real set style and go with whatever seems to work.  I tend to evolve and adapt how I interact and react with my kids based on who they are at any given moment.  I had to laugh when one day my son’s OT asked me to come and talk to a group of parents whose kids had similar issues.  She said “whatever your secret is, I want you to share it with the other parents”.  She was astonished when I said I didn’t have a secret, I just do what feels like the right thing to do at that time.  Just as a I would with anyone else.  Why should my kids be any different?

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

I see myself as a guide and I hope, a role model.  I very much believe in letting my children be who they are and not what I or anyone else thinks they should be.  We want them to figure out their hopes, their dreams, their own ambitions.  I see it as my job to encourage them in that while showing them how to honor other people for who they are as well, no matter how different.

 

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

I won’t lie, I am not a patient person.  I can’t tell you the number of times I catch myself getting overly impatient with my kids.  I find that making sure to get some quiet “me” time in every day helps a lot.  Even if I have to put on a movie for the kids and lock myself in the bathroom for 10 minutes.  Sometimes it means writing in a notebook, listening to music, reading the news, or even crying out my frustrations some days.  Stopping what I’m doing, closing my eyes, and counting to 10 is also a trick I use frequently.  Believe it or not, it helps.  A lot.

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

Hugs.  Definitely the hugs.  That and watching them grow, explore, and become kind, amazing little people.

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself?  What might you say to other parents?

Chill out and don’t be so hard on yourself.  Don’t worry about the dirt and let them run around naked to their hearts content. Kids aren’t and shouldn’t be “by the book” so don’t sweat what “The Book” says.  The book isn’t doesn’t know your kids and isn’t raising them, YOU are.  Trust YOU. 

 

And give yourself a hug.

 

About Shel

To sum me up nicely: Wife, mommy, gamer, goddess, meat/dairy free, wench, history nut, bibliophile, photographer, artist, maker of shiny the things, tattooed, pierced, small biz owner, crazy for yoga & the sea breeze.

Where to Stalk:

Twitter www.twitter.com/theelfwench

Facebook

www.facebook.com/pages/ElfWench-Studio/125344074235597

ElfWench Studio www.ElfWenchStudio.com

Namaste

Shel

 

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!

Today I share with you a guest post from the wonderfully wise Allurynn of Creations by Moonlight, who shares her thoughts about her adventures into parenthood.

 

Tell us a little about your family

Well, I am married to my best friend and soulmate…we have 3 wonderful children. This is my second marriage so my two eldest are his step children. My daughter is twenty-two and lives on her own in California, my eldest son is sixteen and my youngest son is four.

Both my husband and I have “day jobs”, but we also run our own businesses, I’m a work-at-home Mom, as I have a home studio where I do my “day job” and run my jewelry business; and we also have an Alpaca Ranch where we sale products made by their fiber.

Up until six months ago, my youngest spent his days with me. Which I have to admit was a blessing to have the opportunity to raise him, since with my oldest two, I was a single Mom for 13 years, they were in Daycare early on in their lives. Now, my youngest attends preschool 2 days a week, at first it was a major adjustment for BOTH of us…now he really looks forward to it and I enjoy having those hours to focus on my work.

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use.

Well, I was raised by strict Italian catholic parents…that said, my childhood life wasn’t enjoyable…beatings were acceptable, not to mention verbal abuse. I swore I would not raise my kids that way.

Am I lenient, easy on my kids…no. If you asked them they would say I was strict, but fair and reasonable. I’ve never raised my hand to my kids but have often raised my voice. I was blessed with kids that are strong willed and strong minded, much like me, lol, so it’s been a challenge raising two of them as a single Mom. Disciplining them revolves around timeouts when they were young to grounding and having privileges taken away. But I always believe in clear communication, honesty and being there and available for my children as much as I can be. So, along with those timeouts and grounding there were lots of talk around behavior and consequences.

I never forced my spiritual believes on them either, so they are open to diversity and are well rounded kids. I don’t know what parenting style I have, I just know I did and do the best I could with not having a role model of my own. Twenty-two years later I see I did well by my daughter and hope to do the same for my other two.

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

I see my role as a parent as being here to guide, protect and teach these wonderful souls who chose me to come to this earth through. I don’t see myself as superior but as an equal to them. They are such wise souls and I want to nurture and support them, not crush them or conform them to society’s ways. I’m all about giving them room to blossom and bloom in their own unique way.

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

The most difficult part of parenting for me was when my older two hit puberty and they pulled away from me. Though I was told it’s a stage they all go through, as this is how they can find their independence and place in the world, it was a really difficult time for me. Those teenage years are scary, with all the influences out there and the peer pressure, not connecting and having clear communication with them left me in the dark and that was worrisome for me. It’s when we question ourselves as parents, if we did good by them, taught them enough to be rest assured that they will make wise choices.

When my daughter went through it, it broke my heart, we were so close and yet she too had to pull away and find herself. What got me through this difficult time was knowing it was a normal stage in their lives and feeling confident that I could trust them to be wise and smart with their choices. The best part is once they do get through it, a few years later they come back around. Our relationships have been as strong and close if not closer than they ever were. After going through it twice I know I can get through it with my third.

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

The most rewarding part of parenting for me has been watching my kids grow and blossom into young adults. Despite the hardships and struggles we’ve experienced they have come through, become stronger and have an understanding that they can get through rough spots in their lives too.

With my youngest, his family dynamics are much different, as he has both parents in his life and his world isn’t so full of struggles. So, with him I’m able to enjoy and cherish our time together, without the stress of being the sole provide. I can be in his life in a much bigger way and watching him grow into a “big boy” is so rewarding for me.

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself? What might you say to other parents?

Well, I feel I have an advantage here, cos’ I can look back to when I was a younger parent, having a 22 year old daughter, and I’ve been blessed with the chance of being a parent again in my 40’s having a 4 year old son. The most helpful message I could give myself or any young parent, would be to keep following my (their) heart, like I had been doing all along. Everyone has their own way of parenting, and much like religious paths…no one way is better than the other. I feel as long as we do the best we can to help them thrive and become well rounded adults, then we are doing it right.

 

Allurynn has been on her magickal Goddess journey for many years now; following the rhythms and cycles of the Moon and our Mother Earth. Nature not only inspires her, but it also feeds her soul, like the creation of her art does. Creations by Moonlight is a place where she can share her passion and love of handcrafted items to inspire, honor and adorn the Goddess in every woman, be it through her jewelry or unique treasures. Her art is a reflection of her own spirituality and vision. She allows her inner Goddess to reflect love and joy through her paintings and paper art and through her jewelry she allows the Goddess within to honor the Goddess in every woman.

You can find Allurynn here: Creations by Moonight   Facebook

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!

I am so happy to share with you today a guest post by the lovely and inspiring Karina Ladet of Karina’s Inner Space. Karina shares with us her thoughts on parenting from a multicultural perspective.

 

Tell us a little about your family

My name is Karina and I live with my husband Olivier and our two children, Gabriel (almost 6) and Lou Kalliste (almost 3) in a small village in the South of France. We’re a pretty multicultural family as I am a Cuban born Swede with a Swedish dad and a Romanian mom, and my husband is French. Being from different cultures means that my husband and I regularly “discuss” what is the “right” way to do things, ha, ha! I am pretty sure most couples deal with that but it seems like an extra challenge for us as we have been brought up in very different ways.

 

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use.

Wow! My parenting style started out very influenced by attachment parenting and I love being physically close to my children. With the arrival of our second child I have become a little more detached and I now allow myself more time for myself and I respect my own space more too… My husband has been brought up in a more traditional way and we have talked for hours about how to balance a traditional style with a more hippie-inspired one ; ). When we became parents for the first time we realised just how opposite our views on education were but I am happy to say that we have now (almost 6 years later!) found a good balance that works for us and our family.

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

To be fully present with my children as much as possible and to walk my talk. I try to let my children be as free and independent as they need to be and also respect my need for boundaries. I see children as perfect and whole human beings when they arrive in this world and my task is to be there next to them when they need me. I try to communicate with them in a respectful way and let them express any feelings that they need to let out. I also realise more and more that it is so important that I live my own life and do things that make me happy because my children also learn from that. My view of my role as a parent seems to evolve with time. Nothing is rigid, everything can change.

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

Oh! When my son was born he became the centre of our family and I was so in tune with his needs (or what I thought were his needs : ) that I completely forgot about myself. What helped me was to talk to other parents and to my husband. He is so much better at respecting his own boundaries and kept telling me it was ok for me to take care of myself too. I became so much more relaxed after that! Now I take it easy and try not to be too hard on myself

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

All the Love in my life! And getting to know two amazing young people. They have taught me so much about life and about myself. Going through pregnancies and giving birth has given me access to an incredible internal strength. After my son’s birth I felt like Superwoman! Anything was possible after going through that.

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself? What might you say to other parents?

 

• Take care of yourself too! You don’t have to do something big but give yourself some me-time every day.

• Ask for help when you need it! You don’t have to do everything on your own.

• Allow yourself to be human with good days and bad days. It’s ok not to be Supermom every day. Children don’t need perfect parents. They need loving and caring parents and then you can work your way from there.

 

 

Karina Ladet

 

 

 

 

is a channel and happy hippie-at-heart. She offers one on one readings, workshops and (soon!) e-courses where you can learn how to communicate with your guides and angels. Visit her on her blog Karina’s Inner Space or connect with her on facebook
 

 

 

 

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!

 

Today we have a guest post from the creative Leah Piken Kolidas of  the Blue Tree Art Gallery & Creative Every Day. Leah shares her insights into being a new parent  of  her 9 month old baby.

 

 

Tell us a little about your family:

I live with my husband, Andrew, our 9 month old daughter, Annabelle, and our four cats near Boston, MA. I’m a part-time artist and full-time SAHM. We are over the moon about our little girl!

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use:

We’re just at the beginning, so I imagine some of our style is yet to be determined. I know that we want to have a household with open communication, lots of nurturing, and creativity.  We want her to feel loved, supported, and encouraged. I want to be firm and consistent with certain things and more flexible (room for discussion) on others. Right now, while she’s young, parenting seems to be mostly about creating routines and a safe, loving environment in which she can thrive.

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

I see my role as being a loving, supportive, encouraging, and consistent person in her life. Someone who will provide a safe, loving home, where she’s able to express herself, ask questions, and grow. I also see myself as being a role model, so that she learns by example, from watching my relationship with my husband and with my relationship with my work.

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

Thus far, it has pained me most to see her cry. Working through getting her to fall asleep on her own was a real challenge for me, but with some support from my husband and friends who’ve been through it before, we found a way to help her through the transition and we’re all sleeping better now!

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

Watching her grow and learn is absolutely fascinating. Also, the look of love in her eyes, when she sees my husband and I, is the most heart-melting experience. I know that she feels loved.

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself?  What might you say to other parents?

To myself I’d say, nothing can truly prepare you for becoming a mother. The beginning is hard, but don’t doubt yourself. You’re going to be great parents. To other parents, I don’t feel like I can share any real words of wisdom at this point. I guess I’d just say, welcome to the adventure!

Leah Piken Kolidas

is a mixed-media artist living near Boston with her husband, their daughter, and their four cats. She sells her artwork at www.BlueTreeArtGallery.com and leads creativity challenges at her blog, www.CreativeEveryDay.com. You can also find her on twitter: @leah_art.

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!

Today I’m pleased to share the wonderful honesty of Michele Fischer from Finding Your Voice and Big Dreaming Entrepreneur.  

Tell us a little about your family

My family consists of me and my husband, our 14 month old daughter and a menagerie of fur kids that include 2 dogs and 4 cats.

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use.

I am intuitive. I don’t follow any style as I found most parenting books annoying (I used to throw them across the room when I was pregnant) because I just felt they made things seem so impossible. EVERYTHING was a big deal (Oh no don’t paint the nursery pink because you will prejudice the child against other colors!!!). I personally look at my daughter and do what feels right. My husband and I both are followers of a loose routine and consider ourselves very adaptable.

What do you see your role is as a parent?

I consider myself to be more of a guide to letting her become the best person she is meant to be-whatever that is for her! I sit back and watch what interests her. For example like she LOVES books! She will sit with them and “read” them out loud to herself-so I buy her more books. Next week if she likes blocks I will foster that. It’s not about pushing something down her throat because a book or society says you should.

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?


Dealing with extended family has been the biggest challenge. Suddenly family members we see 3 times a year wanted into our lives and I struggled with that. I love my time with those closest to me and am very protective of it. What helped me through it was just talking with my husband-A LOT and figuring out what worked for our family and how we could compromise to allow other people to be a part of our daughter’s life. It is an on-going adjustment.

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

Watching her learn, smile, explore. Knowing that I get to guide her on this journey is an amazing feeling.

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself? 

What might you say to other parents?

My message to most parents is to remember that a “good” parent is a happy parent. We don’t have to be martyrs and there is no shame in saying “I can’t do this I need help.” If you are running ragged, exhausted and feeling as if you’re always sacrificing for your family-how are they going to feel? I would hate to think my mother gave up everything to raise me. I want my daughter to remember parents that enjoyed life as much as she does; parents who pursued dreams and hobbies, had meaningful friendship and knew how to not only take care of ourselves but her as well.

I often think of something I heard a long time ago. When you are on an airplane and the flight attendants are doing the safety instructions-they always say, “be sure to put on your oxygen mask before you try and help anyone else including small children.” Bottom line is if you can’t breathe, and you pass out what good are you to anyone? Same thing is true with being a parent. You need to care for your children and YOURSELF. After all kids learn much more by example.

Michele Fischer

In her own words . . .


I am a writer, coach, seeker and entrepreneur with a variety of interests. I dream big and jump tangents and love the whole process of creating!
Website: Finding Your Voice and Big Dreaming Entrepreneur
Facebook page: Finding Your Voice
Twitter

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“Writing is the only thing that when I do it,
I don’t feel I should be doing something else.”

 

 

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!

 

Today I am thrilled to have my dear friend and yogini Carrie Hensley  of Dharma Connections share her parenting wisdom with us today.

 

 

Tell us a little about your family

We are a sweet family of three, my husband Chris, our son Drew, and me. We live in sunny Mesa, Arizona. We own a yoga studio & café, which has provided some fertile soil to stretch our relationships, provide Drew with his first job, and grow closer together as a family. We love anything outdoors from kayaking to four wheeling to camping. Currently, we are in the beginning stages of launching, as Drew is a sophomore in high school.

 

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use

I would describe my style as holistic.  I have always tried to view Drew as a whole being.  Having taught yoga for fourteen years, I have come to understand the power of letting go of my expectations in order to create the space to allow Drew to become who he was meant to be.

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

My role as a parent continues to evolve through the different ages for Drew. Right now, I would consider myself to be more of a guide than a parent. He is at a stage in his young life where he needs to begin to spread his wings of independence.

 

One of my greatest parenting mentors shared with me that, between the ages of 14-21, you want to treat your child like you would your best friend. Instead of getting irritated at him when he calls saying he forgot his homework, I ask myself what I would do for a friend. This particular instance happened about six months ago. Drew forgot something that was worth a good portion of his grade. I could hear the stress in his voice over the phone. He is an A student, on the track team, and even did a leadership program at Stanford this past summer so I was grateful for an opportunity to show him that I trust and believe in him. About two days later he forgot something else. I did not receive a phone call. When he recounted the story, I asked why he didn’t call me. He said he should have learned his lesson the first time around. This whole experience taught him that not only can he count on me but also that he has to depend on himself.

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

For me, the most difficult aspect of parenting is letting go of control. Often when there is resistance or a certain desired outcome, fear is lurking nearby.  It might be my fear of failing Drew as a parent, fear of what others think of my parenting, or fear of Drew getting hurt (intellectually I recognize he will get hurt… but think mama bear in the wild who will do ANYTHING to protect her cubs), etc. that catapults my need to control and obsess.

 

Yoga and mindfulness are two tools that have “saved” Drew and me on numerous occasions.  Both have helped me step back and observe, rather than react to, the source of my fear. As I come to understand the root cause of my need to control, I can let it go and trust the process to unfold as it needs to.

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

The most beautiful aspect of parenting has been to watch Drew evolve into all that he was meant to be… to see his soul dance behind his eyes… to know that he is content… to know that he is confident in who he is at his core and the path he is meant to follow. Can we ask for anything more as parents?

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself?  What might you say to other parents?

Trust yourself. You know more than you think you do. You can read countless books and gather many different perspectives, but ultimately when you parent from your heart with the intention of guiding your child into who they were meant to be in this lifetime, the words will flow from your lips, the necessary resources will appear, and the support that both you and your child need will surface in ways you never dreamed possible.

 

Carrie is a wife to her best friend and mother to a beautiful son.  She began teaching yoga in 1998. In 2005, Carrie co-opened Inside The Bungalow, yoga studio and cafe, with the intention of providing a Sacred space where students can come home to their own True Nature and uncover their journey of intention, authenticity, and reconnect to their life’s purpose.

Website: http://www.carriehensley.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/dharmaconnections

Twitter: @carriehensley

Google+: https://plus.google.com/106130985171034933254/posts

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!


 

Today I welcome Jo Macdonald of The Red Box Company to share her parenting insights.  You can read more about Jo and the amazing work she is doing with women and girls at the end of this post!

Tell us a little about your family:

I’m married to a gorgeous Kiwi who I first met when I was 17 and we were both living in Hong Kong. We have 1 lovely son who is about to turn 13 and 2 beautiful girls aged 10 & 6. The final members of our family are a crazy Springer Spaniel called Milo and a fish called Douglas!

 

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use:

I like to think I keep the balance between telling my kids what to do and letting them figure things out on their own as I think it’s important to let them learn from their mistakes as much as possible. However, my son has just read that over my shoulder and said ‘mum, seriously, you’re way bossier than that!’ so maybe the balance is not quite right yet!!! All 3 kids agree that I use a lot of humour, laugh a lot and am very in touch with my inner child which I think is a good thing!

 

What do you see your role is as a parent?

To enable them to fulfill their dreams and potential, become independent capable people who can bring more beauty into the world, and to help them become a caring, supportive husband/wife/parent in the future.

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

Probably the most difficult thing was when my eldest daughter was 18 months old and was rushed to hospital with epiglotitus & croup whilst we were in Australia. When the doctor told us to prepare ourselves for the fact that she may die the feeling of helplessness was unbearable, realising that even as a parent you can’t solve or fix everything is very frightening. Luckily the doctors were amazing and thanks to my mother-in-law who flew in from NZ to help care for my son, and the support of friends, family and each other, we made it through a horrible time. What we learnt though was to make the most of everyday, to never take anyone or anything for granted and to tell your children you love them every single day.

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

So many things! Learning how to love unconditionally, seeing them grow into beautiful young people who care for others, seeing the world through their eyes and wanting to be the best person I can be so that they are as proud of me as I am of them are just some of the rewards.

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself?

What might you say to other parents?

Don’t try to be perfect just do your best, parenting is not a competition. Be as willing to forgive yourself as you are to forgive others – children forgive an awful lot if they know you really love them. Never forget that a hug and a mug of hot chocolate can cure everything from a bumped knee to a broken heart!

 

Jo Macdonald

In her own words…

I’m a mother, creator, writer, blogger, women’s circle leader and menstruation coach with a huge weakness for books, peppermint tea and chocolate (preferably enjoying all three together whilst curled up in front of a log fire). I don’t believe in perfectionism, making life complicated or meditating for hours in a cave by myself (although there are days when this does sound appealing!). I am not a saint or a guru but have a very real life with a husband, 3 kids, and a crazy dog and I absolutely love it – 99% of the time! I think women are amazing, I think you are amazing, and I think we can all learn to live our best lives by embracing our menstrual cycle and remembering to slow down, breathe and                                         simplify.

 

As well as working with women I am the creative director and founder of The Red Box Company which aims to make periods, and puberty, something for girls to celebrate through education, workshops and my first Period celebration Red Boxes.

Here’s where you can find Jo:

Website: www.theredboxcompany.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/redboxcompany
Twitter: www.twitter.com/redboxcompany

 

Editors note: Check out Jo’s parent pages where she  has a wonderful  FREE e-book ’7 tips for Talking to your Daughter about Periods and Puberty’

 

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please use the share buttons below!  Be sure to join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Guest Parenting Series!


Today Chizelle  S. Salter of Chizelle T.V.  shares her thoughts on being a parent.  

Tell us a little about your family:

I have an amazing husband and three beautiful daughters. One in her mid twenties, one 8 and one 4 1/2. We’re planning on adding to our family soon. :)

 

Describe as best you can what kind of parenting style you use.

I would say for the want of a better word we use attachment parenting? Our four year old still jumps in our bed at night, we home school our girls (we do follow a combination of set syllabus and natural learning).

What do you see your role is as a parent?

To nurture my children and respect and treat them as individuals. I want to leave my children feeling respected, valued, important and loved – I think once these emotional needs are fulfilled then the rest will follow.

 

What has been the most difficult part of parenting for you and what helped you through this?

I’m in no way a perfect mother, and I think my natural tendency leans towards being highly strung so I do need to keep in mind that this is not an environment in which children thrive! I love the awesome affirmations you send out – they’ve been so good for me. :)

 

What has been the most rewarding part of parenting?

I feel blessed every single day for my daughters, not all day, but certainly every day. My most rewarding experience would be the relationship I have with my 24 year old, we are so close and I am so proud of the person she has become. She’s just so awesome and inspiring and amazing!

 

Twenty years from now, looking back at yourself as a younger parent, what helpful message would you share with yourself?

What might you say to other parents?

1) Treasure every moment, they will go by in the blink of an eye.

2) Play more.

 

Chizelle S. Salter 

owns and runs a lifestyle site with an emphasis on self-love. “I believe my life purpose is to lead The Ultimate Self-love Revolution. To use my creativity and inspiration to teach an empower myself and others to live a life of abundance and joy, to be surrounded by beauty and be all that we can be”
You can find Chizelle on her Website: www.chizelle.tv, on Facebook or follow her on Twitter.

 

If you like this post and think other parents would benefit from hearing different parenting voices please share!  Join  us next Thursday for another inspiring glimpse into parenting on the Listen to the Beat Within Parenting Series!

 

With the holidays upon us it’s easy to forget to take care of one’s self. I find myself rushing about baking gingerbread cookies  like the ones above I made last night from Naturally Yours’ video. We parents so often put ourselves last as we prepare for welcoming others into their home.

 

This season make yourself a priority. Be sure to take some time for yourself, to relax and regenerate. If you wait until its all over, you’ll miss out on enjoying what the holidays are all about. Below are some helpful posts to make the most out of this busy time of year. Enjoy!

 

Jo of the Red Box Company shares 10 tips for staying stress free over the holidays

 

Carrie Hensley of Free to Be Me has a great video with tips for helping you stay present and centered during the holidays.

 

Jackie of essence of wild has a wondeful post on taking cues from nature to find peace.

Gina of Veda Sun shares some tips on staying present with Awareness Practices for you and your family’s sake.

 

Tina of Open Roads Coaching has some great activities you can do with your family the grinch jar and wishing tree.

 

Pixie Campbell has a wonderful ceremony to let go of emotional baggage which you can do with your children to help them visualize letting go . You don’t have to celebrate the winter solstice to do this,it goes well with the traditional New Years letting go or releasing the year to make room for wishes .

 

And if you want to give yourself some play time I have just the thing on my sister site with my free Free Your Inner Child e-course

 

May your holidays be full of  peace, bliss and joy!

 

 

As I sit here stressing, yes stressing over what to write for today’s Metaphor Monday, feeling behind (no video today, sorry) and at a loss of what to write, there it is. Life lessons everywhere indeed. Once again humbled by my struggles.

 

While I don’t exactly like to be stressed about things, I am reminded of how motivating stress can be. Let me clarify, when I was a grade school student , even in high school, I was one of those do your writing assignment at the last minute and get an “A” kind of gal. Yep, I was almost always doing my assignments at the last minute, procrastinating, avoiding until I could not put it off anymore. And it always turned out, for me anyway.

 

Though leaving things until the last minute certainly isn’t for everyone, it speaks to the importance of a little bit of stress to motivate one to move forward. Too much stress of course can be imobilizing. This is not an inviation to push stress upon your self and others, only a call to take notice of it when it is already there.

 

The old addage “No pain, no gain” comes to mind in another way. There has to be just the right amount of discomfort inorder for one to move forward and recieve the gains of doing so. If you just stay put, and don’t stretch beyond your comfort zone then you will of course just stay put, nothing new tried out, no new insights.

 

Applied to parenting it looks something like this: when we see our children struggle with something new or even something they have tried before, sometimes standing back and letting the frustration unfold is the best thing we can do for them. If we do it for them, or jump in too quickly and tell them it doesn’t matter, we do our children a disservice. We rob them of that motivating stress which can push them beyond their presumed limits and show them just what they are capable of.

Taken a step further we can see stress’ role in creating change in our lives as parents too. When we are feeling stressed because of how things are going with our children, whether that be arguements, sibling fights or chaotic routines, it is a good time to step back and figure out what is the gain here? What message is this pain trying to convey? Just as our body gives off physical pain signals when it is injured and needs tending, stress is usually a good indicator and hopefully a motivator to shift some things around with a little tender loving care. We can get sucked into that drama of “woe is me, other families don’t have to go through this“, or we can take a closer look and see what is the underlying message here. What needs to change?

 

It is a balancing act for sure. Knowing when to step in, and when to sit back. Knowing your own levels of tolerance for stress and when you may need some help. I would be lying if I said that there should be no pain. We are human, with emotions that somtimes are like being on rollar coasters. We are human, carrying around that baggage of times past. We are parents, we are learning, we are gaining more life expereince every minute, each day.

 

Be ready for some pain and tears. Be ready to let these go. Be ready to move forward again and gain some peace of mind knowing that every parent every child is human.

 

The Parent Inspiration Toolkit can help you parent through the stress. With guided meditations and expressive arts exercises to ground you and strengthen your connection with your intuitive parent.

 

6 Ways to Avoid Being Bugged

Welcome to the continuation of last weeks Metaphor Monday about being bugged by your children’s behaviour.  This week I share some ideas on how to protect yourself from being so “bugged”.

 

 

 

Don’t get so bugged . . .

 

Today’s parenting metaphor takes a closer look at why we sometimes are bothered by our kids.  Filmed in Temagami and  inpsired by nature, while we were canoe camping this past August.

On Not Being Sheep …

The other day we dropped our kids off at camp, reluctantly. That is to say they went reluctantly. There was a trip planned for the day that meant they has to go on a school bus for 2 1/2 hrs. Not that long for them considering they have gone on car trips that take 6 plus hours on our way to canoe in Temagami. So why were they reluctant? I have a confession: we are one of those families that don’t have a game boy Nintendo (or whatever mechanical hand held device that is popular) for one to stare madly at while playing games. Have they played? Yes on their friend’s. Do they play any games? Yes just not daily or even weekly.

 

So when the director of the camp gave the ok for kids to bring their electronics for the bus ride since it was such a long ride, guess what my 11yr old wanted to do? Bring the iPod of course since it has games on it. Geeze you’d think the trip was about the school bus ride and not the actual destination. My husband and I felt torn. As we so often do given our different life choices of minimal tv, electronic games, and veganism. Of course it wasn’t as simple as allowing him to take the iPod.

 

  1. His brother wanted to bring something and there wasn’t anything appropriate
  2. like most 11 yr olds our son has a tendency to loose things.

 

We don’t want to buy into the “give them electronic games and they will behave/shut up/ sit still mentality” which is what we felt the camp was doing. Afterall (I told my son ) when your dad and I were kids we didn’t have these kinds of electronics we would just sing on the school bus or play other interactive games with our peers.And come to think of it kid’s aren’t allowed to bring electronics with them on school trips either. Geeze what will they do? Oh no does this mean they have to talk or even interact with their peers?!! ok I know I am sounding somewhat snarky.

 

The point is, well, it’s two fold. Firstly the camp giving the go ahead is a set up for kids who don’t normally carry around these games in their pocket. Whines of “But everyone else will have one” are ineveitable. To me it is sad if that is the case.

 

So while my son’s point should not be the basis for our decision or any of his for that matter (flash to the future: everyone else smokes … everyone else drinks, everyone else ….) it puts a parent in a tough position. Do we compromise our values because every other parent allows their children to “fill in the blank”. We certainly don’t! Are we sheep or do we choose what is right for our family?

 

 

In the end we chose what we felt fit for our family, which was no electronics. We were’nt very popular that morning but you know what? At the end of the day it was forgotten and we felt good about our decision to stay with our values and not flock like sheep to someone elses’ values that are not a match.

 

 

Calm Waters

 

Welcome to another Metaphor Monday for parenting tips and tools. This week I give you some parenting tips for avoiding disappointment from turning into overwhelm for your child.

 

Filmed in the beautiful wilderness of Temagami Ontario! Enjoy!

 

 

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