Never Say No – raising big-picture kids

by Mark and Jan Foreman

ย Such a great book on a topic that I am extremely passionate about (thus the name of my blog!!). Mark and Jan are the parents of Tim and Jon Foreman…You know, from a little band called Switchfoot? In this book they teach about “Transparenting”. (Not sure if I made that word up.) Anyway, looking at the heart of the child and guiding them through love and discernment instead of harshness and discipline. The idea is to “Never Say No” when the child asks if you can play. Enjoying them while you can.

While I absolutely agree with the entire idea of this book, I fear that it may seem overwhelming to some. In parts, it comes across that this is really what you need to do or you will have regrets and the child will stop asking you. I just hope that it isn’t read the wrong way and parents start to feel guilty. I certainly don’t feel like that is their belief.

I hope that what is taken from this book will be to really seek your child’s heart. When they are misbehaving, why? What’s really going on? Also, being able to say “sorry” when we are wrong and being transparent in our lives as we are the model of what they will become.

Thank you, Litfuse, for this WONDERFUL book! As always, this is my honest opinion. Here’s to many more!!

Are we up to the task?

IMG_2021I was speaking to a new, sweet friend a couple of days ago. I posted a review of 52 Things a Son Needs From Their Moms and I really enjoyed it. It’s right on, as far as I am concerned. It’s how we have parented our children and have seen the fruit of doing it that way. Our children love God with all of their beings and have servants hearts. I know that can only be God.

She mentioned to me that her son is older and she might have failed him. I just felt like I wanted to run and give her a big hug! In my humble opinion, I feel that it is never too late. When we are honest with our mistakes, so our children don’t think we are hypocritical, they will come to respect us. If they know we love them, that’s what matters. Woo them and win their hearts.

I know one thing for certain, and that is God is sovereign. He gave you the children you have because He knew you were the best one for the challenge. Nobody else could do a better job becabroken-heartuse you were the one God picked. He knew that you have what it takes, with His help.

Be encouraged, friends. Seek God with every area of your life, serve together, do life together! Play with your kids and look into their eyes when they talk. They will fall madly in love with you.

I read something once that really stuck with me. What do your children see in your eyes when they come into the room? Do you look happy to see them? Don’t have time for them? Can’t look up from your iPod? Look annoyed? Delighted? You know, a huge smile and a look into their eyes saying that you are happy to see them will do wonders to their attitude. It melts the frost.

IMG_4646-0.JPGIf I was honest, I would have to say that our eyes do just as much talking as our mouths.

Let your kids see how happy your are when they are near. Drown them in love, hugs, kisses and time. I don’t care how big they are. My teenager still gets his little nose and forehead kissed. As much as he fights it, you can’t argue with the huge smile on his face. โค

So, be encouraged!! You haven’t failed, friends!! When you do, go to them and say, “You know what? I really screwed that up. Can you pray for me because I’m really struggling with _____ right now?” Buh-Lieve me, my kids get to hear this ALL. THE. TIME.!!!

And remember, the time goes so quickly. Show them your “Happy to see you!! eyes” when they walk into the room!! Please!!! You won’t regret it. I PROMISE!

52 Things Sons Need from Their Moms

by Angela Thomas

Parenting book ALL MOMS SHOULD READ! I absolutely love this. It is how I strive to raise my boys and I love reading this confirmation with new ideas. Raising our kids is not about making sure the stay in the lines or else we crack the whip. It’s understanding why they would step outside the lines and looking at the heart to see what’s wrong. It’s focusing on what’s happening inside. Are their eyes happy and full of life? Are they in love with Jesus? Or, are they scared that you will freak out if they mess up? Are they disconnected from you when their friends are over, or do they want you around?

It’s so important to raise our kids to be connected to us and to God. The only way to do that is through being open in our weaknesses and using those to teach our kids life lessons, plus, a LOT of prayer! If my walk with God isn’t what it should be, that sets the tone for our whole household.

This is such an easy to read, wow moment type of book. I love it! Please pick up a copy for yourself and a friend!! This should be in the hands of every momma!!

Thank you, netgalley, for this awesome read. As always, this is my honest opinion. Here’s to many more!!

Time is Short

parents_and_children

As parents, our time is SO, VERY short. Just yesterday, my babies were just that: babies. Now, on the verge of graduating high school, The Large Child is a man. A MAN! The Little Toot isn’t far behind.

Because we love them and want them to have stress free childhoods, we coddle them and protect them from the ugly world that’s out there. The problem with that is: if I am not teaching them how to handle the things they are going to experience, who will be? Will that person love God as much as I do? Will that person, that is teaching my child, want to bring glory to God? Maybe, mabye not. That’s a risk I’m not willing to take!

When we go through hard times and situations (my husband and I), we try to let our kids in on what’s happening. Try to show them how to handle it. Ask them to pray with us. Ask their thoughts and opinions and line those up with the Bible.

I don’t want to pretend that everything is ok and, SURPRISE! When you are out on your own, you will find out that it’s not a perfect world!!

Nope, no thanks.

It’s so vital that you are going through these things and using them as life lessons for your children (age appropriately, of course). Not only does it hold you accountable to handle it correctly, it shows them how to handle really difficult situations the right way. They pray with you and they watch your every move. Scary, really. Puts the pressure on!!!

family-prayer

I encourage you to walk with your children. Remember that God just gave them to us for a short time. He’s basically letting us babysit them before we send them out to make an impact on the world. I want to stand before God and say that I prepared them the best that I could have. I don’t want to have regrets. I want my children to see God work miracles. To see God fight for us in a way that only He could. To see God provide when there is no provision. To see God answer our prayers that we have all been praying together. A prayer based on bringing great glory to His name.

Things I heard this week…

Having two boys can be fun and exciting. You never really know what’s coming next. There’s something special about a mom’s relationship with her boys. I would never trade it!

IMG_4458-0.JPG

That being said, here are a few things that I actually heard this week:

1. Little Toot to his older brother. “You don’t have to tell me what to do. I already know how to live my life!!!!”

2. “Mom! I jumped up and looked over the stall in the bathroom at Hardee’s. There was actually a guy in there! He totally saw me! When he came out, I said, ‘Sorry! I didn’t know you were in there’. He wasn’t happy.”

3. “(The Large Child) has a new nickname. We call him, “White Shadow”.

4. “I take a long time to poop because every time it starts to fall out, I like to pull it back in. It feels cool!”

5. “Dad. Don’t forget! Happy wife, happy life”

6. “Mom! You aren’t fat. You used to be really fat, but now you’re not.”

Just a few of the many delightful things I get to hear.

All in a day’s work. Right, Moms?