Sunday, July 29, 2012

Movies, Violence And A Parent's Responsibility

The Dark Knight Rises. Is it just too dark?
Last week, just before I found out about the tragic massacre in Aurora, Colorado, a friend shared an article with me about the increase in violence in today's movies and the fact that people tend to protest vehemently (and violently) when ratings boards give a movie a rating intended to keep children away. This article came out four years ago. Has anything gotten better? No.

In fact, I would hazard a guess that it's actually gotten worse. But Hollywood isn't completely to blame. Yes, of course they keep churning out these action films that seem to need to top the last one in terms of its action scenes, and degree of nauseating violence. But they obviously wouldn't make them if people didn't spend millions and millions of dollars seeing them.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

When Your Kids Push Your Buttons. Guest Post By Katie Hurley

This summer I've asked a few of my fellow bloggers and parenting experts to chime in on some reader questions that I felt were pretty universal in their subject matter. I thought this would not only allow you, my dear readers, to see that we all struggle with similar issues, but it would also introduce you to some really amazing people who in my online circle of friends.

Today's guest blogger is Katie Hurley. Katie is a Child, Adolescent, and Family Psychotherapist, Parenting Expert and the author of not one, but two blogs. In her first blog, Practical Parenting, Katie shares her beautifully written stories and straightforward advice for being the best parent you can be. She recently launched Clomid and Cabernet which is an advice and support blog for anyone dealing with the struggle of infertility. In addition to all of this, Katie is a married mom of two and writes weekly parenting columns for moonfrye.com and Mommy Moment

I've had the pleasure of meeting Katie in person and she's as lovely and real as she comes across in her blogs. She pours all of herself into helping families so they can raise happy, joyous children and I am truly honored to have her guest posting here today. 

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Motherhood And Parenting Are Shame Minefields

Shame is, perhaps, the most powerful emotion.
Have you ever had the experience where a stranger shares something and it sparks a change in you? They probably have no awareness of their impact, but they have created a ripple effect in that act of opening up and sharing their own pain or questioning. 

I've noticed this happen when I share my own struggles; somehow it gives others a sense of relief to know that there are others who have the same troubles. But it's hard. It's hard to open up, it's hard to let others know your weaknesses, it's hard to confess to not doing things as well as you wish you could.

Shame. 

Guilt. 

Embarrassment. 

Those are really difficult emotions to overcome, and they can keep you locked in a box of loneliness and isolation. But every time you share what you see as your weakness, you find that there are so many others who reach out in relief to say that they so needed to know that they weren't alone in their struggle. And in their reaching out, you find yourself both relived of this burden of shame and uplifted in knowing you have helped someone else.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Seven Steps to Help Children Cooperate Joyfully: Guest Post by Shelly Phillips

Over the last few weeks I have been sharing some guest posts from a few writers whose work I admire. Shelly Phillips of AwakeParent.com is among those people. I "met" Shelly originally through Twitter and I love the passion with which she writes about parenting. Every time I read one of Shelly's posts I feel her happiness radiating through. When she offered to write a guest post about joyful cooperation, I was honored to be able to share her work with my readers. I hope you enjoy her as much as I do.

Seven Steps to Help Children Cooperate Joyfully
Guest Post by Shelly Phillips

I’ve worked with children and parents for the past thirteen years and one of the biggest challenges I hear from most parents is that they’re not sure how to encourage internally driven and consistent cooperation from their young children. 

About two years ago my daughter was born and I got an opportunity to put my education and experience with child development and parenting strategies to the test with my own daughter. I’m not afraid to tell you, some of the strategies I used in my preschool classes or as a nanny just don’t work with my own child. Luckily, it wasn’t all for naught. I do still have some tricks up my sleeve and they’re working wonderfully with my little one. I hope they help you to experience more joy, cooperation, and ease with your young children. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

9 Essential Gifts For New Parents

Receiving gifts when you're about to have a baby (or babies) is exciting. Being able to give gifts to friends and family is sometimes even better. For me, this mostly has to do with sharing items that have helped so much or have been really useful. I love to pass on wisdom and as a mom of twins, often that wisdom has come through a trial by fire. I like to spare others some of the learning-the-hard-way that I had to go through!

By far, the greatest gifts I've gotten over the years turned out not to be material things, but rather wisdom gained and lessons learned. I threw myself into this job of mothering with great passion, but without a lot of planning. I made a number of stumbles along the way, but slowly I am figuring it out. 

I threw myself into writing this blog in much the same way. And my purpose for doing it has always been to share what I've learned in order to help others. I want to pass on some of the gifts I wish I had received and embraced early on. I truly believe had I been so lucky, the first few years would have been a lot easier on my whole family. So, I share these gifts with you in the hopes that they will provide you with greater insight, connection and peace. 

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