Being Strict versus Creatively Strict as a Parent

I call myself creatively strict, because if a super strict parent were to witness my day unfold, they would honestly see me as a not-strict parental unit. With that being said, I firmly believe that I am a creatively strict parent and I am going to explain what I mean by that. Please do read on…

Being Creatively Strict as a Parent

As a parent I often share my insight as to what I think a parents job is. Here is what I would use as a job description for a parent:

To teach life lessons and ways to learn from mistakes. Give positive praise to job well done when leading those under you. Enable those who are below your lead to learn lessons for each tasks completed and to live fully, freely and happily with common courtesy, respect, honesty and trust.

That is my simple definition or job description for a parent. I firmly believe it is our job to simply put; raise our children to be adults. Think about what type of adults you wish to interact with and learn creative ways to train your children to become those people. Yes, Gasp! I used the word train. I do think we train our children … that is just sort of my word for it.

Some rules we have in our household are pretty simple and straight forward, all it takes is a bit of common sense and a little bit of respect to follow these rules:

  • Agree to disagree - You will not always win every battle with siblings or other peers and you may not always understand why your parent said no. That is okay. You are not suppose to have a reason for every decline your parents give you, that is how the real world works, no one makes an excuse every time they say no to you. Sometimes agreeing to disagree is taking the higher road.
  • Be honest - share your thoughts and opinions with us, we want you to talk about what is on your mind. You are a child, yes, but you are also a human being who thinks for their own self. Share your honest feelings, thoughts and be truthful even when you fear a consequence will be given, I guarantee your honesty will make the consequence less severe.
  • Show Respect and Respect YourSelf – Starting with respecting yourself, you will not be able to fully respect others unless you respect your own self. When sharing your thoughts about something, remember to speak kindly and try not to yell or use judgement because respect gains you respect in return.
  • Love your Family – family will give you a run for your money, but we are all in this together. Always know and feel that love of a family even when days have gone sour. It’s that love and bond as a family that will carry you further into life.
  • Accept Consequence and Learn Something – Always use your time wisely, if you have a consequence for making a bad choice there was a lesson to be learned there. Figure out what that lesson is, don’t know what the lesson is? Ask your parent. We will be honest with you and discuss what we want you to learn from the discipline tactic we placed. Accept your consequence and trust we made that decision for a reason.

The best way to explain my creatively strict parenthood ways is to tell you that I have learned to treat my children with respect, dignity, and importance. While I am still in charge of those minors and I am still the Mama Bear, they are also human beings who deserve to know they are valued, they are loved and that they are an important piece of the family. I expect my children to use their words when upset with each other or me. I expect my children to be honest. I expect my children to make mistakes but admit those mistakes were made. I expect my children to stick up for each other, no matter how much they argue or fight with each other, their bond as siblings will matter so much to them as adults.

I put the fear of Mama Bear’s wrath into my children so they know all they have to do is be good, honest people and there’s little to fear. Break my trust, be unruly, rude or disrespectful to anyone then you will find your world will be turned upside down for a period of time! Be honest, kind, and respectful to reap awesome rewards, love and hugs and kisses! It’s that simple.



How Much I Love My Children

I Love my Children so Much That .. A Poem of a Mothers Love

I love my children so much that;

I allow them the distance to make mistakes.

I love my children so much that;

I teach them to accept not everyone will like them.

I love my children so much that;

I allow them an open forum to speak their opinions freely & openly.

I love my children so much that;

I grew to be the example I want them to live by.

I love my children so much that;

I encourage them to try  new things by overcoming any anxious feelings.

I love my children so much that;

I allow them to be who they are without judgement or attempting to mold them into who I am.

I love my children so much that;

I show appreciation for their good grades and other accomplishments with a big smile, happy dance and a hug.

I love my children so much that;

I’ve taught them to enjoy the simple things in life, rather than be needy of materialistic items.

I love my children so much that;

I give tough love when needed, even if it kills me to do so.

I love my children so much that;

I teach them we are a family unit and each will have their own responsibilities to ensure the household runs smoothly.

I love my children so much that;

I raise them in an old school mentality that doesn’t easily come as accepted in society as we know it today.

I love my children so much that;

I allow their thoughts, feelings and opinions to matter, all the while letting them know I am the adult who makes the final decisions.

I love my children so much that;

I show them that their Mama loves them no matter what, forever and always unconditionally.

My Children love me so much that;

They shower me in hugs, kisses and include me in their pretend play time because they  know I love them so much.


The Day Aj Veered Off, His Anxiety and A new Program Causing Fear

Parenting in general isn’t an easy task, I would never tell someone parenting is easy. As I watch my sister journey into her third trimester of pregnancy I am not telling her it’s going to be an easy task to be a parent, she knows already. Watching me with three kids shows that parenting requires a crazy amount of energy at times, dedication, motivation and the right attitude to make a joke about it. I mean, without a sense of humor, parenting can be quite challenging. One area that I have zero sense of humor is anxiety, having struggled with it my whole life it’s not easy watching my middle child struggle with it at age six.

I keep forgetting that Aj has anxiety because he has come so far from that mood swinging child that the topic of anxiety seems to be something that is left in the back of my mind. The other day Aj’s anxiety kicked in high gear and since it’s something I am all too familiar with for my own self, I was right on the ball to fix it.

Aj was sent to school a few weeks ago with a permission slip for this program that our local school and town library does. Since Aj was sent to school with the form, he assumed that the program was starting that particular day and as his teacher brought kids out to be picked up by parents Mister Aj veered off into the bus line all ready to hop on and go to this program. It was rather shocking to teachers and myself that Aj seemed to be missing because he is not that kid, he is like a soldier in school, a creature of routine and schedule, never does he veer off the path of normal. So to look back and not see him certainly shocked and scared his teacher {as well as me} just a little bit.

Finally we found Aj, with the help of quick thinking school officials and myself. He was in the bus line, ready to go to the program because after all, the permission slip was sent in so it must have been starting that day, at least according to him in his mind. Aj rarely verbalizes his thoughts and just goes with what he thinks he is suppose to do, which caused quite a stir with a happy ending.

Fast forward to the week that this program actually starts, Aj was so nervous and full of anxiety over his mistaken day of the program starting that he refused to go to the program on the start day. Aj woke up that morning with tears and all full of anxiety stating he was not going to this program and I was to pick him up at school. There was no way, no how that he was going to participate. I knew he really did want to take part in this program, as his sister did for years prior, he had been so excited about it and yet his anxiety was taking over the excitement and he was going to miss out on a really great program if I did not act fast.

I discussed the issue with Aj, why he didn’t want to go all of a sudden and his reply was this “I wanted to go that day and I was disappointed it didn’t start then. Now I don’t want to go. I don’t know what bus to get on. I don’t know what to do, where to go.”  Aj came up with all of these fears that were inside of his little head and spoke them to me, for that I was thankful. Having some form of an idea of his fears allowed me to do what I do best, make the situation better.

I reassured Aj that I would take him inside of the school, talk with the principal and his teacher, anyone that we needed to speak to so that he felt more at ease with going to this program after school. That statement of me saying I would help find answers to his fears, made him happier. Thank goodness!

I ventured into the school hand in hand with Aj to talk to the principal who was so amazing with his words and calmness. Not once did the principal look as if he was making fun or not getting what was going on inside of the mind of my sweet six year old. The principal helped and seemed to be on the same mindset as I was, he walked with Aj and me down to Aj’s classroom where sadly there was a substitute, knowing Aj has anxiety with changes, we found the teachers helper and she assured Aj that when it was time for the program that a teacher who is in charge of the program would meet with all of the kids and together they would walk to the bus line that takes the kids and ride downtown together.

It took all but fifteen extra minutes of my time that morning and in that time Aj’s fears as well as anxiety was lifted at least 90%, so much so that he was okay with attending the program after school. This is how my life is with a child who has anxiety issues, each new program, event or sport is something that makes me learn to be more creative, proactive and positive for my son because without that strength and attitude from his parents & teachers, he wouldn’t be pushed to be all he can be in life.

Live to Smile Today

Happy child with painted handsI will be honest it’s easier to worry about your life than it is to sit back and relax. Many of the people I come into contact with daily are worriers by nature, and I, myself, am one of them! Growing up and even to this day I can find myself worrying about how another family is going to survive after a tragic event, I worry about family members when faced with a challenge and I worry about whether or not I am a good Mom. It is all too easy to worry about life and allow the challenges you and your friends face to consume your thoughts. I invite you to get rid of the worry, the fear of the unknown future and live to smile today!

If you are facing a challenge in your life or career allow the worry to take but a moment of your time and turn around and just smile. You will be amazed at how something as small & simple as a smile will brighten your day and those around you. When you smile, the world smiles! Those beautiful lips curved in an upward semi-circle or maybe a half moon shape simply tell the world and everyone around you that you are living to smile today!

Fear not the unknown future, forget the past, and live in the now. Today is your day to shine, today is your day to make yourself and everyone around you happy with one small gesture, a smile!

We can’t change the past, but we can change our future. If you make a conscious choice to live to smile you will find new doors open for you and new friends arrive at your door steps. There are so many wonderfully positive things that happen to one who chooses to live to smile today! Just try it … you might like it!

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