How to Be Intentional and Accomplish Your Vision

An intentional parenting challenge. Let every action bring you closer to your goals and your visions for your family.

 “If I step on one more Lego, I’m throwing them in the garbage!” I shouted before I could stop myself. But I would never do that: throwing away Legos is like throwing away gold.

I’ve also hissed, “You better listen to me, or we’re going straight home.” But when we drove 45 minutes and spent $80 to get into the children’s museum, I wouldn’t leave after 5 minutes.

Or the ever-lovely, “Why can’t you guys sit quietly for once.” Like they owe it to me.

These empty threats are not my proudest parenting moments. Continue reading “How to Be Intentional and Accomplish Your Vision”

How to Stop Wasting Time and Love the Little Moments

Stop wasting time 5 easy ways in your everyday life.

My 3-year-old asked for help while I prepped dinner the other day. I stepped away to transform from chef to superhero to solve the problem of the moment.

After a second, I was back to the original task. When I swiped the screen to get back to my Pinterest recipe, a little red “5” beckoned me to the bottomless void of Facebook. I’ll just check my notifications. Then I had to reply to a few comments, answer messages, and browse the feed.

A new email popped up and lured me over to my inbox. I deleted spam, read a few non-urgent messages, and realized I was wasting time. I turned my tablet off and put it away so I wouldn’t be tempted to use it again. Continue reading “How to Stop Wasting Time and Love the Little Moments”

8 Easy Ways to Get More Trust in Your Life

Daily steps to learn when and how to trust and become a trustworthy parent.

“Mom, what are you eating?” my 4-year-old daughter chirped as she peeked around the fridge door at the crinkling wrapper in my hands.

“Uhhh… um, nothing,” I garbled past the chocolate I knew she could smell with her super-candy-sensor nose. “Go pick a game and I’ll be right over.” Her narrowed eyes darted back to my closed fist before she stepped away to set up her game.

I finished chewing to get rid of the evidence and walked over to play a round of Candy Land. The game pushed the incident out of my mind until I lay in bed that night and stared at the ceiling. Continue reading “8 Easy Ways to Get More Trust in Your Life”

6 Awesome Ways to Rock Your Compliments Like a Boss

The ultimate list of things to avoid when complimenting your kids and what to do instead.

My 4-year-old daughter slipped into the shimmering dress-up gown and twirled. “I’m beautiful! Mom, am I beautiful?” she asked.

“You are so beautiful!” I affirmed, smiling as she danced around the room. She received compliments all day long about how wonderful she looked, and I couldn’t peel the dress off of her when it was time for bed. I didn’t push it.

The next morning was another story. We had a playdate to go to. She needed new clothes.

I pulled out jeggings and a t-shirt, for comfort and ease-of-tumbling. But as soon as my daughter put them on, she panicked. “I can’t wear these, Mom! I’m not beautiful.” Continue reading “6 Awesome Ways to Rock Your Compliments Like a Boss”

Want Healthy, Happy Kids? Learn How to Love Yourself

A step-by-step guide to better self-esteem for us and our kids.

“What the heck is my problem?!” I snapped, as I chucked my salt-instead-of-sugar cookie dough in the garbage.  “I’m such an idiot. I just can’t do anything right.” I threw the dirty utensils in the sink and speed cleaned the kitchen.

A few hours later, I heard my daughter shout from the other room, “What is WRONG with me? Why do I always do everything wrong?”

I ran to stop her from berating herself and found her with her elbows on the table, fingertips pressed against her temples. Paper shreds all over the floor. Continue reading “Want Healthy, Happy Kids? Learn How to Love Yourself”

Give Your Kids the Most Important Gift: Learning

The ultimate list of toys that will help your kids learn.

He sat on the floor and stared at the shaking truck with glazed eyes. It rumbled and lurched forward for a moment, only to stop and blast out a few shouted phrases and some rock music before taking off again. Flashing lights followed it forward and backward until the timer stopped and the truck halted. It left the room in gaping silence.

He just sat there and waited for it to do something else. His eyes darted away, then back. Away, then back. He leaned forward and pushed the button again. It restarted the cycle and he settled back to watch it again.

He’s not playing.

He is using a toy, but he is not playing. Continue reading “Give Your Kids the Most Important Gift: Learning”

To Teach or Not to Teach? A Difficult Decision

Three questions to ask yourself when deciding if your child is too young to understand.

I sat in the midst of a group of moms who oohed and aahed at the sweet little girl just learning to sit up on her own. She made spit bubbles that dripped down onto the plastic dinosaur toy she played with- but mostly just chewed on.

All of the sudden, my two year old tore into the room, on his own make-believe adventure, and realized the little girl was eating his dinosaur! He ran straight for her, yanked the T-rex out of her little fingers and started to run back into the other room.

My long arms caught up to him before he could make it far, and I took the dinosaur back, telling him to ask for a turn. His loud protests joined the little girl’s and then took over. She had a new toy and was already back to playing happily. And my son was throwing a fit. Continue reading “To Teach or Not to Teach? A Difficult Decision”

Join me on an Amazing Journey to Better Parenting!

How to be a gentle parent for our kids

I’d be lying if I told you I’ve never put my kids to sleep then sat on the bed crying, ashamed and disappointed in myself for losing my temper and being a jerk to my kids. I want to be kind and patient, understanding and forgiving. But every once in a while, the nasty side slips out.

I look at their angelic faces and beat myself up, hoping to do better next time, but not really making a plan. I’m willing to bet you’ve been there too.

Our kids, the people we love most in the world, can be on the receiving end of our most emotional outbursts. We can make all the resolutions we want to become a better parent, but without a plan, it’s just not gonna happen. Continue reading “Join me on an Amazing Journey to Better Parenting!”

10 Things You’ll Miss the Most (Before and After Kids)

I sat on the toilet, nursing my five month old, while my two year old was trying to help me wipe and the four year old shouted to me from the other room. And I thought to myself, “I kinda miss being able to go to the bathroom alone.” I started to realize that there are a lot of small things I didn’t appreciate before I had kids. Little, everyday things I gave up to be mom (which is the best thing ever, BTW).

I don’t regret it for a second, and I love my kids more than anything! But certain sacrifices do come with parenting. This is a list of the small things I wish I took a moment to be thankful for every time I got to experience them, instead of taking them for granted like I did, until they were gone. Continue reading “10 Things You’ll Miss the Most (Before and After Kids)”

It’s Not You, It’s Me.

When one of my kids starts to make a habit of a behavior that’s not-so-great, I start to be a real drama queen in my head. I place all the blame on him and wonder why he can’t just do what I want him to do. Why doesn’t he understand (or care about) the consequences I have in place?

Then I realize, he does understand the consequences I have in place, which is exactly why this behavior keeps happening. I may not realize it, but sometimes my behaviors actually cause his undesirable ones to increase when I really want them to decrease. Sometimes it’s not his fault. Sometimes it’s mine. Continue reading “It’s Not You, It’s Me.”