Helping Your Kid's Grow a Garden

 
Start some gardening traditions with your kids. Give them their own garden patch and a spot to dig. Children love getting their hands dirty and watching things grow. Be sure to buy good quality, child sized gardening tools. Plastic toy versions just won't hold up to the task. You will also need children's gloves and a watering can. Mark off the garden area and turn the soil. Kids can help break up any lumps with their hands. Work in some organic compost. Choose seeds that will grow quickly. Small children get impatient if their plants take too long to sprout....
 

My Dads Secrets

 
From the book Spider's Night on the Boom I've only begun to understand my dad since I became a father myself, and it's amazing to me how I'm constantly being reminded of lessons he taught me 40 years ago-lessons that I never even knew I was learning. As a kid, my life was like a black-and-white kid's adventure movie, composed of disjointed, but sometimes very exciting scenes. My parents played the parts of supporting actors in the movie of my life, and although my dad would have rated large letters in the opening credits, his character would have been reviewed by a critic "...
 

Some Good News About Blended Families

 
They Spur Members To Grow Emotionally Tatiana Tannenbaum grappled with a classic stepfamily struggle when she moved from Moscow, Russia to Portland, Ore. and married Leb Tannenbaum: Her three new stepsons weren't very happy to have her in their lives. To earn her stepsons' acceptance, she cooked Russian meals, which the boys rejected. At times, she spoke English and felt as if no one understood her. It seemed all her efforts to win them over failed, she says. Finally, she realized she had to love herself and accept the fact that her stepsons might never connect with her, she says....
 

Parenting Your Teenager: 3 Ways to Make the Time

 
Every now and then I'll get a story sent to me by e-mail that is a no-brainer idea for an article. One of those came across my desk just the other day. It's called "I Wish I Had a Second Chance." Give it a read, and then let's put some 'hands and feet' on how to use it in your own life. My hands were busy through the day, I didn't have much time to play the little games you asked me to. I didn't have much time for you. I'd wash your clothes, I'd sew and cook. But when you brought your picture book and asked me to share your fun, I'd say A little later, son....
 

The Challenges of Single Parenting

 
Having worked with parents for the last 35 years and written books on parenting and relationships, I've discovered that one of the greatest challenges for us as parents is to be loving role-models for our children, showing our children through our behavior how to take personal responsibility for their own feelings and needs. Our children need to learn from our role-modeling how to nurture themselves within and how to create a sense of safety in the world. In families where both a mother and father are present, both parents can participate in nurturing the child emotionally and taking care of the child in the world, and both parents can role-model what it looks like to do this for themselves....
 

Child Education

 
The initial state of happiness about an own child is often overcome with annoyance after even a short period of time. Children quickly grow an own personality, and it's the most vital task of the parents to help develop it and give it a shape. Otherwise, the little angel can turn into a little devil adding considerably to the stress in life you already have. Like everything else in life, child education is a tightrope walk between strictness and letting loose. Drifting off either way causes more problems than it solves....
 

Mothers Day Tribute

 
As Mother's Day approaches I would like to give a different perspective to ponder. Being a parent and a mother are not necessarily the same. Parenting is a gender-neutral term and refers more to the management function (hearing kids read, being a cheerleader, confidante and behaviour management expert) while mothering, like fathering, is something more instinctive, more basic and more close to the bone. Parenting can be taught but mothering is something to grow into. Mothering (and fathering) is generative in that it develops when you come into contact with children....
 

How to Foster a Love of Reading and Writing in Your Child

 
The key to lifelong learning is reading and writing. When reading and wiring are a regular part of your family's life, you send your child the message that they are enjoyable, valuable and great ways to learn. Here are some ways you can start helping your child: Reading Keep many age appropriate books and other reading materials in your house. If you have the time, schedule weekly or biweekly trips to the library with your child. Take out books for yourself too. Show your child that you value reading and that it is important to you....
 

A Mothers Love

 
Once upon a time there was a beautiful bird whose golden feathers and sweet voice attracted attention where ever she went. She was not only beautiful but also extremely intelligent and talented and she longed to leave the nest and try her wings out in the big world. At first she did not fly far from home and when she returned to the nest, she still felt a part of it but then she flew to a foreign land and things began to change. She stayed for awhile on the rim of the nest of others but she could not find a place to rest, so she flew around and around getting more and more dis heartened and more and more tired until her golden feathers lost their lustre and her sweet voice no longer broke out in song....
 

Normal and Logical Consequences

 
Successful parents have learned to be both firm and kind at the same time. They set boundaries and work with their children to help them understand that they will follow through with appropriate action if inappropriate behavior continues. Don't think when I say firmness that I really mean strictness. Strictness deals with the child; firmness is more an extension of our resolve toward our decisions. AN EXAMPLE OF KIND, BUT FIRM CONSEQUENCES "Yes, you may play in the sprinkler, but you must dry off before coming in doors....
 

Lets Not Hurry Children Through Childhood

 
Have you ever experienced one of those days when you wanted to return to the carefree days of childhood when your biggest worry was how you could con your parents into staying up a little longer at night. Have you ever thought that you would like to be a child once more when the biggest decision for the day was choosing which topping put on your ice cream? While this worry-free existence maybe idealised, there is little doubt that most parents want to capture this carefree, happy feeling for their children....
 

Is Your Behavioural Change Strategy Working?

 
'How can I start getting my children to help out at home?' Many parent ask me this question. My answer is simple - "It depends!" Achieving a behavioural change in children is dependent on their age and stage of development, their temperament and attitude, and how set in their ways they are. Let's look further at the above helping at home scenario. If the children are four years of age or younger then encouraging them to contribute to their family's well-being is relatively easy. Most children want to help at home in the early years so it is a matter of parents providing opportunities for them to help and also showing them how they can assist in positive ways....
 
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