Y’all remember Courtney DeFeo (Lil’ Light O’Mine) who has been such an encouragement on appreciating and watching out for folks in our lives that sometimes get overlooked or underthanked? Well, she’s just written a book. And I asked her to share something from it. She cracks me up – and blesses me at the same time. Might she encourage us all in our role as CMO (Chief Mood Officer). Because, even when the moods are bad – here’s hoping we can laugh in the midst, because we are ALL there at one time or another. Thanks for sharing Courtney! …and thanks for walking the road with me. -K Do you know what happens when you ask your kids a question? You get an honest answer. I was basically fishing for a compliment. The conversation went like this with my five-year-old. We had just moved to Orlando
The following reminder is by our dear friend Kathleen Fischer. I hope her words bless you like they did me. When I saw this, it reminded me of something I read last week by Tim Elmore on listening (from Habitudes). He said there are 5 types of bad listening. And, even though generic in nature, they seem to be especially applicable to the way I/we tend to listen to teens. Judgmental listening – jumping to conclusions about the speaker Selective listening – only hearing what you want to hear Impatient listening – finishing other people’s sentences, interrupting them Egocentric listening – thinking about what you’ll say as others are talking Patronizing listening – pretending to listen, but really off in your own world Stubborn listening – listening, but not open – your
Some phases of life are “easier” than others. Right now, we’re in one of those remind-me-to-breathe times. I don’t know why. But in the midst of challenges, I’m always grateful that rarely does everything crumble at the same time. With five kids, usually one is dealing with something funky. It could be their own bad attitude and unwise decision making. OR it could be a situation that falls into the unfair category. Because, inasmuch as people travel behind our wake, we travel in the wake of others. And sometimes things beyond our control can pull us down. It never ceases to surprise me – the way parents question ourselves in the midst of trials. We don’t tend to overly praise ourselves in the good. If your kid scores National Merit or makes the Club sports team they practiced so hard to make
Today’s guest post is by our friend Andy Kerckhoff. He’s a teacher, an author and blogger at growingupwell - and a parent. So he has special insight and wisdom that I always find interesting. I hope you do as well. Check out Andy’s blog or his his book: Critical Connection: A practical guide to parenting young teens. Thanks for sharing, Andy … and thanks for walking the road with me. -Kay Once again, his room isn’t clean, not by any standard. Her backpack, jacket, and shoes are scattered about the floor of the hall, again. His grades are sub-par in math, again. She is making the family late to school, again. He seems to be nonchalant about his music audition this weekend. She isn’t running enough to prepare for soccer tryouts next week. How do you approach the lack of motivation: carrot or stick?
So this week, I’m posting guest blogs from some terrific folks that have great things to say. Today’s blog is by my new friend Jeannie Cunnion. I met her through sweet Courtney DeFeo, who has blessed us here at themoatblog before. One super fun thing, Jeannie is actually coming to Dallas this weekend to speak at Irving Bible Church’s Mom’s Night Out. Grab some gals and go hear her share on Saturday night from 6:30 – 8:30. Jeannie’s book, Parenting the Whole-Hearted Child has been featured on Rachel Ray and the TODAY Show. You can connect with her at jeanniecunnion.com. Thanks for sharing, Jeannie! … and thanks for walking the road with me. On October 29, 2012, Hurricane Sandy crashed into our little town. Thank God we were able to escape with the precious things like photo albums and baby
Last night I sat in a meeting that left my stomach in knots. I even woke up with the topic on my mind, deeply concerned about an issue that faces all of us even if we don’t have kids in the mix. The topic: sexually graphic nature/mature themes in school-approved/required literature. “Sex… profanity… rape. Those are just three of the controversial subjects many parents in the Highland Park Independent School District don’t want their children reading about in school. When most of us were young, none of this was an issue. Not only in literature, but also on television and in the movies. I remember giggling and gasping with my siblings at Jane Russel proudly displaying the Playtex Cross Your Heart Bra in the 1970s. Playtex was the first to advertise undergarments on national television in 1955 and the first to show a woman
Since the start of school, life has been a bit crazy. It has something to do with my flaky, not so organized, stop-and-smell-the-roses way of living. Which is a fine way of living – until deadlines enter the picture. Deadlines and forms. Forms that have to be turned in … not lost. Deadlines and calendars. Calendars that list (or should list) meetings. Meetings that need to be remembered in order to attend. So, I’m still not sure all of our bases are covered. But I’m hoping. And, the start of school has already been up to its teachy-ways with more than one lesson to learn – not all of which involve textbooks and teachers. A few came from Barton’s volleyball team try-outs last week. Now, I know that I’m a sucker for my own kids. In fact, I might err on the side of total sap. Even though my kids can get my ire like no others, they
Around our house we love games and puzzles. Okay, so I’m really the only one that likes puzzles, but I haven’t given up the fight to get the kids to join the effort. A puzzle, in all its addictive nature, forces a life-pause. And good conversation can occur in the midst of searching for just the right piece. So, puzzles – not so much. But the games, we love. And right now it’s cards. Rummy to be exact. Rummy goes a step beyond the game of Gin Rummy, at least the way we play it. Rummy offers a bit more strategy and gamesmanship. One hand doesn’t make the game. And, you can play off each others hands. The discard pile stays alive. Points are gathered or lost based on cards laid and those remaining in a hand. We usually play to 500. It’s exciting … and fun. And I’m so glad at least one of my kids has caught the Rummy bug.
For those who might not know, Jon grew up on the mission field. His parents lived on a tributary of the Amazon River with an indigenous tribe called the Ese Ejas. They became family to each other. So much so, Jon’s oldest sister and her family still live in Bolivia. Mission work is in the Wyma blood. So, when Jon and I met and we realized we were falling in love, one of the first things Jon asked me was, “Do you think you could be a missionary?” I responded with an enthusiastic, whole-hearted affirmation, “Absolutely!” And I leaned into the dreamy adventure of it all. Well, it didn’t take long for Jon to question my response. His doubt might have had something to do with my reaction to a roach in our first little rental home. In my defense, that bug was huge and quite possibly flew. But, Jon just shook his head and laughed as he he killed
In our house, today marks the last day of care-freedom. For two of my five, tomorrow the alarms will go off. Tomorrow snooze buttons will be pressed. Tomorrow catatonic bodies will no longer be sleeping late or hanging around the house with friends. They will be sitting at desks trying to coax their brains to consider Calculus, Chemistry, Dostoyevsky and the likes. And Mom will be right behind doing what we do, encouraging and reminding – “You can do this,” “Don’t sell yourself short,” “You’re worth more than a bad decision,” “Take the high road,” “Look for someone to encourage today,” … and so much more. The kids may act like they don’t hear us, but they do. This is a mom’s seed-planting/fertilizing time of life. We plant,