Tag - Life lessons

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No Feedback = Stuck in the Muck without Realizing It

How can one change?

- The "establishment”? 

- My child?  

- Me?! 

Have you experienced a less-than-optimal situation and wanted to help it evolve only to be told, “This is the way it is.  PERIOD.”

I have.  Twice this week!   Each instance is characterized by the absence of feedback.

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Positive Discipline Blunder = My Birthday Gift

I have just returned from three day training with Positive Discipline founder, Jane Nelsen.  We learned to focus on teaching our children the life skills we soooo deeeeeeply desire to pass on:  integrity, responsibility, humor, problem-solving, respect....  You know them too.

Jane Nelsen regularly asks,

"How did we come up with the CRAZY idea that parents should make kids feel worse in order for them to be better?!"

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Exploring Courage: It Worked for Us

June 6, 2014 marks the 70th anniversary of D-Day.  Remember?  That’s when Allied forces landed on the Normandy beaches to fight for freedom.  9 000 Allied soldiers died on that day to enable 100 000 fellow military to march, swim, fly, and drop into Normandy. 

Freedom.

Brotherhood.

Sacrifice.

Victory.

D-Day is HUGE Deal Day still in our year.

Many of these young soldiers knew their lives were at stake.  Faced with danger, they went forward anyway.  That’s courage.

Would you and I and our kids call out “present” when facing challenge?  How do we encourage courage in our homes?  Try these simple, entertaining, and rich ways. 

Read on to learn about our TWO free downloads or click below for the first.

Free downloads

 

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Talking Virtues and Values with Kids without Preaching


When our eldest child was three years old he popped this question:  “Are you friends with all of the people at work?”  I answered simply for his age and already envisioned deep discussions on friendship, respect, and,yes, even office politics!

Then time zooooomed by and I finally paused long enough to wonder what happened with those conversations.  Would we ever have them?

Chez nous (in our home here in Paris), family conversations happen mostly at mealtime (which is why we try to eat together regularly).  What do we talk about around the table?

(For posts on specific values, click here.)

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Turn Work into Fun

Running = WORK (in my book).  It’s effort, sweat, and sore muscles.

And yet, I wanted to run yesterday as The Color Runners pranced by me during the Paris race.  It’s a 5K race and every kilometer is marked by a shower of color.  They call it “The Happiest 5K on the planet.”

What if we could infuse our home management with such joy?  Here’s my go at it:

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RESPECT You Can See, Hear, Feel...even Taste!

An upsetting situation is coming to the fore in my son’s class.  Bullying.  Among girls.  They’re not breaking bones with sticks and stones; they’re hurting with words.

How did it start?  I’m not sure (and is anyone?)

When did it begin?  Some time back...but it’s irrelevant now.  Today, bullying is here.

Who does it?  In this bullying instance, I know all of the concerned people:  parents and kids.  Our children have been in the same class for six years.  We know these families.  They're all delightful people.  Every one of them.  

Without a doubt the parents of the kids involved hope to pass on the value of mutual respect to their children.  And yet, a connection between beliefs and actions is not being made.

Passing on our values to the next generation is one of parents’ deep desires and formidable feats.  So much easier said than done!  I don’t have a foolproof method for passing on our principles to our children.

I do have some hard-learned lessons on communication with people from a different culture (I’m an American living in France) who speak another mother tongue.  After all, our children do live in a confusing generational culture and talk differently, “u no wat i mean?”

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Communicate to be Understood

Why do you and I communicate? 

Sometimes I wonder if it’s to hear myself!  How wonderful I am (wink)...how smart I am (nod)...and definitely how right I am (roar with laughter)!

There are also times when I truly desire to get a message across to another person and communication breaks down.  Kaput.  I might understand if I were only giving negative feedback, yet this also happens with a positive or neutral missive.

FRUSTRATION.

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When the "Wrong" Parenting Tool Becomes the Right One...and the Source of Inspiration

Picture this dilemma:  It’s a GORGEOUS day (no, this is not the problem).  You’re on the ski slopes and there is fresh powder (still not the family challenge).  It’s lunchtime and you have no cash...but you have freshly made, delicious sandwiches (still in suspense...) 

Here is the clincher:  you would like to enjoy your simple feast sitting down BUT, restaurants are in business and not in charity; they reserve seats for clients who purchase.  You would rather not freeze your rear off by sprawling in the snow.  Besides have you tried sitting Indian style with ski boots?  Ouch!  Squatting could be an option, but how restful is that?  And to add challenge to difficulty, you would appreciate an amazing view.

Life is tough...or full of promise.

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Remember Me!

My father-in-law passed away last night.  How will he be remembered?  Will his name be cherished? 

And what if my time were tonight?  What would my legacy of memories look like?  (Read how I want a party when I die.  Serious.)

My husband and I come from very different family cultures.  My son described the contrast in his college application essay:  “Indeed one has only to spend an evening with our family to grasp the drastic differences in personality and cultural upbringing between my mother and father.  She has inherited of a firmly Protestant and American background, while my father has acquired firm atheist convictions from both of my French paternal grandparents.“  (FYI, we have been married 22 years.)

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How Mother’s Shock Got Kids Doing Chores

Getting kids to help with chores seemed like an ideal requiring extra-superlative effort made by super-moms...

until some ugly attitudes crept up chez nous. Then it became a vital necessity.

Photo at left:  demure Mom Shock.  Below is more what I felt like.

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