Thursday, July 14, 2011

Phenomenal Tip: How to Parent Your Kids With A Smile On Your Face


As a full-time mom, I am often asked how I keep my sanity handling three rambunctious kids?  It is really all about finding that right mix of balance between structure and chaos, and generally a lot of LETTING GO
For instance, a typical scene in the car can let you in on the type of attitude that I have developed which allows me to smile in spite of the chaos that goes on… 

The kids get out of school very hungry and at the same time their bodies need a healthy amount of carbohydrates to keep up with the training that they are going to do later in the day so I allow them to eat their after school snacks in the car.  ( Shhh! Their dad doesn't know) The interior of the car is occasionally left looking like what can only be described as a wreck in the aftermath of their afternoon snacking.  Occasionally pasta gets spilled, grapes are thrown on the floor, or there’s an occasional sticky dribble of yakult on the leather upholstery.  Do not even get me going with the scent that lingers from all those food.  I do not even raise hell anymore as I hand over the baby wipes to let them clean up their own mess.  But without their knowing it, the driver still does find himself with an enormous amount of cleaning up the next day. 

And if their mess doesn't get to you, just imagine the noise level in the car is almost always at a high maximum.  B and R and their verbal combats are a standard and habitual occurrence that I treat their clatter as white noise.  I hear them but I do not listen to them.  There's no way out of two talkative kids stuck in a small space!

While I still place primary importance on structure and routine, there is also a huge place in my life as a mother for growing a more tolerant and laid back ATTITUDE.

Here are some tips on how I manage to get along with a smile on my face:

1. I do not think I can carry out a wise management of my home and family apart from my relationship withthe Lord.  I small-talk with Him throughout the day and ask for the ability to faithfully, patiently and lovingly complete my tasks.

2. Routine is a beautiful word in my world.  I am able to organize my day and complete my tasks because of it.  My kids do well when they know what to expect. And my husband gets all the benefits of a peaceful home.

3. Flexibility.  One of the advantages of making the rules is I can also break them.  With 3 fast-growing kids, our routines constantly need adjustments from time to time, as something is added or another is dropped.

4.  Keep priorities in the right place - Relationships are what matters. I remember what a friend posted on her FB wall, and my heart was really convicted with her message: We all want to be the perfect mom, but our kids just want to have a happy mom.

5. Mind your own business.  Don’t get overly concerned with what other people are doing or saying.  Stop seeking the validation of others and be confident in yourself.  Just concentrate on loving and taking care of yourself and your family.

(The above-mentioned tips are an excerpt on my Q & A with Michelle of My Mom-Friday for her Mom-Style feature.  You can read the entire post and view some photos on her webpage right here.)


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