Friday Four: Smart Tips From Mama (part 3)

banner momAs we close out our week long celebration honoring moms remember that moms come in many forms: some are assigned to us by birth and some we claim simply through heart felt connection. To have the honor or be one is a blessing. If you missed the previous post, see here: 1st and 2nd.

Take a look at these last 4 strategies for raising smart, well rounded, confident, healthy children. If you haven’t already, surround yourself with powerful, generous women that want to pour goodness into you.Childhood goes by too fast. You must have support to enjoy it all.  

7. Push “Unable” off the Table

I gave my children an attitude—a “don’t quit” attitude. Although I made it clear that it’s OK to fail—if you learn from it—or even stop for awhile, it is not OK to give up at the first hint of difficulty. They need to know that life is hard, and struggles are always there, bt at the heart of any success is the ability to keep going no matter how tough it is, how rough it might get, or how long it takes.

  • You Have to See a Real Man/Woman to Be a Real Man/Woman. When sacrifice is in your home, let them know. Julius and I let our kids know matter-of-factly when we sacrificed our time and effort for something our family wanted or needed. This gave the children a chance to appreciate what each parent should do for the family. They get the reality lesson they are not entitled and everything does not magically come to them. They see that hard work is what makes it all happen.
  • Build a House of Praise. Listen, anytime a child’s parents think he is wonderful, the child is going to fight to prove them right. Some kids do the wrong thing because they rationalize: my parents think I’m a loser, so, why fight it? Be careful what you say—do your best to think of another way to convey your thoughts if you are disappointed in your child.
  • Embrace the “H” Word. Homework—that big, bad “H” word—is inevitable. It is also one of the flash points toward a child’s ultimate success or failure. It is definitely the most important thing you can help your child to master. The kids knew I was available to help—but I wouldn’t do their homework for them (besides, most teachers know exactly what’s going on).
  • Beware of Turning Out Cookie-Cutter Children. Even in the same family, kids can have completely different skills.. I cannot expect him to “be” them—and I don’t.
  • Everyone Can’t Be a Ballerina. Some parents have unrealistic expectations. Parents who were always good in math or sports for some reason think their kids will automatically be the same way. If your daughter would rather jump rope than become a ballerina—let her do it, because not everybody can be a ballerina.

8. Don’t Lie Down with Anything You Don’t Want to Live with Forever

Kids don’t want to hear parents talk about sex—they don’t even think we have sex. But we can set them straight about those birds and those bees.super god

Be open and honest with your kids about sex.

  • Don’t Just Talk About Sex, Talk About Responsibility and Relationships. I never talk about sex without talking about responsibility and relationships. Sex is serious business with lifetime consequences.
  • Hold Out for Moonlight and Reality. It’s important that your kids know the difference between soap opera romance and the real thing. Teach them the tricks to keeping romance strong while they work, raise children, and clean their house. Hey, couples can still make out in the kitchen while the kids are busy, or flirt until they go to sleep.
  • Don’t Stand for a One-Night Stand. I impressed on my daughter Andi to believe in true love so she wouldn’t let down her guard or jeopardize her life for someone who might never call her back. I told her to set standards so she wouldn’t turn into a statistic.
  • Because I Said So and Did So. Role models do matter. In our Rock household, there was a world of love and laughs. Even though Julius and I were the parents, we had a separate, deep relationship with each other. Our children were blessed to be able to watch us have good times together. I was a model for them to follow when the time came for them to settle down with one person. If you are separated or divorced, point out healthy relationships around you.

OK, fast pep-talk review: sex education is not a backstage pass to have sex. Take charge by having The Talk and answering questions honestly—don’t leave it to your child’s friends or siblings to get to them first. Help your kids to wise up so they don’t end up living with something or someone that could cramp their style, health, and reputation for a lifetime.

And, of course, don’t talk about sex without talking about responsibility and relationships—it’s too beautiful, personal, and blessed to simply be a recreational sport. Sex is meant to be between people who love and care about each other and for the children they create.

9. Good Memories Are the Best Things You Can Give Your Children (Besides Good Manners)D art

I never understood the true importance of good memories until Julius died. I was grief-stricken and didn’t want to do anything. My sister-in-law, Elaine, urged me to remember the fun times Julius and I had together—she said to be grateful for the wonderful memories I did have. She was right, it was the memories of our life together that kept me going.

I continue to be supported by the memories of our family life together. When I listen to my children tell the stories of their lives, I’m often moved to tears when I realize Julius and I helped make some of those good memories possible. My fondest hope is that our children will always try to give their children positive, inspirational, and often hilarious things to remember.

  • Know Your Family by Your Traditions. I know our family continues to stay strong when traditions and memories are handed down—it is our own personal history, from what we serve at holidays to always giving the children new books at Christmas to helping others in the neighborhood. There are also, though, smaller, everyday traditions you may not think about that can create a part of your family’s identity and be a great source of memories. For instance, the way my kids waited for their chance to go call Daddy for dinner; or what about when you go to that certain place for a treat every time you shop nearby; or the indoor picnics you have when the weather turns bleak.
  • Narrow the Generation Gap with Holiday Traditions. Holiday preparation time offers an opportunity to include all the generations. Even the youngest can help with cookies, candies, breads, or cakes. The little ones can stir the bowl, pour in the milk—and even a baby can lick the frosting! Get everyone involved.
  • Good Memories Don’t Have to Cost Good Money. You don’t need to go all over the place or spend a fortune to find family activities that create great memories. Have a “Board Game Dinner Night”—we still do that. Pick out a board game and play it with your children or ask another family to join you.
  • Talk Up Your Memories Through an Oral History. During the holidays when families get together is a great time to have your family members record those tales (especially the older relatives) on tape or in a journal memory book. So many families leave all the storytelling to “Aunt Edna,” and then when she is gone, no one knows the stories. This way you can protect those memories and they will be a treasure forever, and I do mean forever.
  • It’s Never Too Late for Traditions. Maybe you say you don’t have any traditions—or not enough to keep your family connected. In order to start or add a tradition, try to figure out what you enjoyed the most as a family. Ask your kids what they remember from the last holiday and see if that could become part of your holiday each time. The most important requirement of any tradition is the ability for it to reconnect the generations with the fond memories that matter this year and every year.

10. Spirituality Is Not Just for Sundaysyes

Those who delve into any spiritual life always come up with same core of truth—that it is all about connecting with a higher power than us. When you help your child develop a spiritual foundation, you give him a guide to a moral and ethical life, a guide to treating people right, and a deep, abiding sense of confidence that he will pass on to his children.

  • The Church Is Not a Convenience Store. In the same way we cannot expect the schools to teach our children everything, neither can we expect any church to do it all. Parents, you have the ability to teach your children the importance of faith by your example—not only in religious doctrine, but by what goes on in your home (for example, the love between parents, and their shared commitment to a home where values such as respect, helping others, forgiveness, patience, and loyalty are as important as anything they simply “hear” or “read” in church).
  • Honor Your Children. Why honor your child? Because your child is God’s gift to you. One way to honor a child is to take the time to be aware of his differences within your family. You honor his gifts, creativity, and good qualities. Another important way to honor your children    is for you to spend time with each child individually.
  • Honor Your Parents. In many ways, the respect for authority that is learned  at home is the key to a child’s success. I don’t think honoring a parent means fearing parent. Instead, it implies regard and compliance with parents’ word and rules of the household, which the parents have created.

BONUS- Don’t forget—it is you, the parent, who plants the seeds of spiritual values in your children, not only by what you teach them about your God, but by the way in which you live your life. Treat each other with love, respect, and forgiveness—help your children understand the importance of this. When all else fails, your child’s spiritual background will sustain him.

From the book Mama Rock’s Rules by Rose Rock with Valerie Graham. Copyright © 2009 . Summarized by permission of HarperCollins Publishers.

 

 

 

Hope you have a great Mother’s Day Weekend,

QCSupermomDIGITAL CAMERA

Reclaiming My Identity

As a Stay At Home Mom, I must acknowledge and address both the perks and pitfalls of managing, a large family with limited income. 99.6 % of the time I am content. My motto is “Mess with me, you might get by with an eye roll. Mess with my children, and you better run”. (My husband can take care of himself. He’s a tough guy.) TODAY I sat in that .40% and I did’t know why.

I love this!

       I love this!

Everything on the surface appeared fine. The children had no complaints. I even called my son in college to listen to his voice and to see if I could pick up on any cues, he too sound great. So yes, I was grateful to mentally clear that off my mind.

Yet something was not right. Maybe I’m over processing something  or maybe God is trying to direct me to a new place or possibly stopping me from making a big mistake, I thought. Have you ever felt unsettled in your spirit?

I do have a lot going on these days. ( 9 children, a crazy veteran husband, I’m still breastfeeding our youngest, SAHM group organizer, tutor, community activator, AND blogger) Needless to say our days often feel like an insane whirlwind of needs, requests, deadlines and never-ending demands, but I honestly love it all. Crazy right?

So, I tiptoed into my bedroom closet for a few minutes. I walked out to a revelation. I hated that I didn’t notice it before, as it’s been repressed for a while. I ignored my hair breaking off, chalking it up to the harsh cold weather. I also ignored my jumping eye lid, crediting my lack of sleep for that. BUT when I started getting nervous for no reason. I had to hit the breaks and put myself first.

My financial insecurities, and concern that the world is more perilous for kid raising than when I grew up.

Before I got married. I worked three jobs. Two in hospitality and one in appointment setting. I LOVED making my own money. Being able to make purchases without permission, consent or validation was the life.Not that I was wasteful, because I wasn’t but it is a level of empowerment. Yes, when I got married he  & I became 1. But I lost that power, I need it back.  My husband will never understand it. It’s nothing like having your own, and bringing it to the family table.

Jessica Beals has Nothing on me. Pass the mic...... next year .... please. :)

Jessica Beals has Nothing on me. Pass the mic…… next year …. please. 🙂

When I was young, we had more hope. I like to think that I’m raising amazing children and equipping them for today’s challenges. If it wasn’t for my moms group and my Kwanzaa family, I would think that I live on a island. These children today will choose short cuts every time. The value of life, inner pride, zest for the future, moral codes are diminished. It’s saddening.

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Well, after a good cup of tea, a stress busting video, and a silent peek at my beautiful children (sleeping face I think everything will work itself out as it should.In the meantime, I have to come up with some strategies that will work with my time and generate real income…… then tease my husband by buying the girls new earrings. (yes, that would drive him nutty! 🙂 )

I’m thinking about AVON. I love their new line. With my large family, and the new product line, earnings seems quite promising. We’ll at least till something better comes along.See, it’s looking better already. Putting myself self first hasn’t wavered my goal of keeping my children a priority.

Great ideas here

Staying In My Zone~QC Supermom

Friday Four: Mother’s Day is coming, thanks Anna Jarvis!

Mother = LOVE

                                                     Mother = LOVE

Have you ever wondered where  Mother’s Day originated? I did, so I did a little research. The tradition of celebrating mothers and motherhood has been around for quite awhile. Though beliefs about motherhood have varied widely, many cultures have marked entry into motherhood with ceremonies or have held annual festivals to honor mothers. 130428-062654

The earliest tributes to mothers date back to the annual spring festival the Greeks dedicated to Rhea, the mother of many deities, and to the offerings ancient Romans made to their Great Mother of Gods, Cybele. Christians celebrated this festival on the fourth Sunday in Lent in honor of Mary, mother of Christ. In England this holiday was expanded to include all mothers and was called Mothering Sunday.

Although there were other notable Mother’s Day efforts in the United States beforehand, the official holiday was forged from the efforts of West Virginia native Anna Jarvis. Anna was the daughter of Ann Jarvis, an activist and social worker who worked to create more sanitary communities. Following her mother’s death in 1905, Anna formulated the concept of Mother’s Day as a holiday to honor all American mothers and their contributions to their children and their country.

In May of 1908, Jarvis organized the first Mother’s Day celebration at a church in West Virginia, and shortly after, coordinated a huge letter writing campaign to publications and politicians as part of a PR campaign to build support for a nationwide holiday honoring mothers. After three years of hard work and persistence, Mother’s Day was celebrated in almost every American state, and finally, on May 8, 1914, President Woodrow Wilson signed a resolution that designated the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.

Of course it did not take long for florists and retailers to commercialize the holiday. Interestingly enough, only a few years after the establishment of Mother’s Day, Jarvis began to feel disgusted by the companies who were exploiting the holiday to turn a profit. By the time she died in 1948, Jarvis admitted she regretted fighting for the holiday altogether. Today it’s one of the biggest money holidays ever. We try not to get caught up in the madness of the day, but QC Supermom does enjoy a day service. YOU JUST CANT BEAT SERVICE! I do not want any candy, roses, store made cards or gifts? I am so happy that all of my living children are healthy,peaceful in the mind and love each other? I can’t get that from any store.

My Mother’s Day thoughts:

1. I had the best mom ever! She taught me lessons even in here absence.She taught me the honor in being a real mom. My mom was the most selfless person I’ve ever known. She would give anyone the shirt off her back so they would be comfortable. As a child I always thought that she was doing too much. But today, I understand it was all a lesson in which I try to apply.

What am I to say after a statement such as this?

What am I to say after a statement such as this?

2. I will admit, I don’t see myself getting inked any time soon, but it was a nice surprise to see my son honor me in such a way. He got my name on his arm! It sits inside of a crown. (how fitting for a Supermom from the Queen City)

Goddess Isis - Early Egyptian Roots

Goddess Isis – Early Egyptian Roots

3. Win a Pamper Day for mom! It’s a fun little contest from me to you all. This is a small contest. Body wrapping, Facial, Hair Style and healthy yummies   Entries will be limited to North Carolina only. (But I would LOVE to hear it all)Tell me the best advice you’ve ever received from your mom. Winner will be selected on MONDAY!

4. Children love being a part of greatness. I found this activity and had to share them. They are so cute!

I Love My Mom worksheet.

 

Wednesday Wow: scary lab test

Ta-da! 20 years ago, my inner superhero revealed herself. In the right situation, talents I never knew I possessed sprang into action. Faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive, able to leap tall buildings in a single bound — if one of my beloved children was in peril, that is. Then comes Mother’s Day. The big pay back day! 

I hope everyone had or gave a great Mother’s Day! Mine was great. Everyone was healthy, fed and sheltered. I even got hot wings , fuss free diaper changes, texts phone calls and awesome hand made gifts to celebrate with it.

In the light of  such a celebration, came darkness. Monday I went to see my practitioner for this pregnancy. She gave me some really scary news about my recent blood test.  She & I hope it’s a false positive. Lord knows I hope it is…..The lab will call with new results within 48 hours.  When she gave me the news, all I could think of was my kids, sisters, dad, and husband.  In that order.  I didn’t even have the heart to tell my husband. I’ll just wait to hear the results  before I get anyone worked up.  He did noticed a sad look in my face when I got home.Even asked what’s going on lady.  I didn’t bother to say anything. My husband tends to over react  So far today, I’m in the motions. I’ve already gave the boys their lesson, fed them, -the usual and just sitting here staying busy till my girls get home. No need to worry too much, my life is not my own.  I just cringe on the idea of being without my children. I  LIVE for them & my mothering isn’t done quite yet.  Keep me in your thoughts for peace & strength.

-Kelle, QC SuperMom

………this is the topic I was gonna write on. Yeah, it’s equally important.

Chemicals to avoid

Friday 4: DinoSauer Train, time tunnel to MOM

“Time Tunnel, Time Tunnel Approaching!”

If you have smaller children, you maybe familiar with the PBS show Dinosaur Train. It showcases Buddy, a Pteranodon and all their Theropod friends as they travel the Dinosaur Train to meet, explore, and have adventures with all kinds of dinosaurs.

You gotta check out this video! Click here!

I have 2 favorite dinos on there.

Tiny is a Pteranodon who approaches dinosaurs with much confidence  Every time she sees a different dinosaur as her new friends, she introduces herself and her family with her. Among her siblings, she is the only one who looks exactly like her mother. She is the smallest of the family, and sometimes likes to hide in holes and crevices in the trees, which she calls her “Tiny Place”.

Another one of my favorite characters is Mrs. Pteranodon  The mother of Tiny, Shiny, Don, and Buddy.  She is a teacher, companion, and very nice.  Her children introduce her to other dinosaurs as “Our Mom, ‘Mom’. Just as my kids do.

I guess I could call myself Tiny, as I’m the youngest in my family. I too look the most like my mom & is always with family. This Mothers Day, I want to take a ride through the time tunnel to see my mom again.

Here are my four reasons why I want to  jump on the dinosauer train with my children to see my mom.

1. She was the salt of the earth. Being in her presence was always peaceful & inspiring.

2.  I do what I do because I learned from her. At times I think a left many lessons on the table that she laid out for us girls. Although she made it look so easy, I know she did ALOT  for us.  One lesson, she taught us well. “Don’t blame people  for what’s wrong in your life. Take your power back & realize YOU co-create your life with The Uni-verse.”

3. I wanna to see her love up on all these grandchildren of hers. Theirs something about seeing the love  & promise between a mom & her grandchildren. To see her hugged & kissed up with my mall ones—priceless!

4.  She was my living easy button. My husband & I are VERY SELECTIVE as to who has access to our kids. Not everyone will care for your children as you would. My husband  I could use a real date night. (Gosh, that sounds selfish- didn’ it ? Yeah, it’s my truth and besides that we we’re always good about “Suga-Mama” perks!

Happy Mother’s Day everyone!

Besure to honor and respect your moms 365.  There’s no darn time tunnel back.