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More on Creating a Childhood

That picture in your head is strong.  It makes you do things that are too hard for you. It changes your behaviour.  Makes you strive to be better.  To be a wonderful mother to this precious little one.

I believe that the children we have are ours for a reason.  That you are, or can be, the best possible mother for that child.

Teaching Children Obedience Part 1

Teaching children obedience requires three main areas-
Loving attention
Today we will look at discipline.  It has two branches:

mother training 
child training

A Mother Teaches Love

The most important part of their childhood will be the feelings they have.
Children have very intense feelings of all kinds- fear, anger, sadness, joy, delight, love.
They come with personalities and character traits.  One of your most important jobs as mother is to teach them how to deal with their feelings.


Rocking Chair Therapy

One year for Christmas, Santa brought  me a baby girl and a rocking chair.  A big white wicker one to rock her in.  I was in hospital with baby over Christmas so my husband carried the chair on his head through the corridors to my room so I could get started right away.

Little Boy Energy

Ah how I love little boys!  Especially mischievous, wild, naughty little boys. Such exuberance for life.  Do you really want them to be sitting quietly and calmly instead of taking the world by storm?  A punch on the arm means, "Hi, come play!"  Another little boy knows what it means.  A little girl thinks, "He's so mean". 

A Child Feels Your Feelings

Babies communicate through feelings instead of words. 
When you hold a baby, the baby feels love just like you do.  

Happy Not Perfect

How much nicer is it to play with your child, than try to get him to do what he doesn't want to do?
How much more fun is it to plan something to delight them, like toasting marshmallows over a fire, than standing over them forcing a task.


Catch a Problem While its Small

Since you spend so much time with your children, you know them well.

You can see a storm coming, you can tell when he's had a bad day, you know when she's excited or concerned, even if she tries to hide it.  They are astonished that you seem to read their mind. 

Family Institution

A baby comes into the world with an "I'm the centre of the universe" viewpoint. The indignant cries of a 2 month-old who has been made to wait 20 secs for her milk.  The temper tantrums of a two year old -"What??!!  Me, not getting what I want! Unthinkable!"  Slowly they are trained by love and observation that there ARE others in the world, but that inner "I am important" is strong in children, as it should be. 

Loving Attention Vs Negative Attention

Motherhood is an abundant life.

Too busy, too full, too much.

Too much fun, laughter, beauty.

Too much work, mess, drama.

Brotherly Love Part 1 -Service

An important part of the vision I had for my family was brotherly love.  That my boys, and later on, my girls, would play happily, keep teasing and wrestling to a non painful level, be happy for each other's success and stick up for each other.  

Brotherly Love Part 2 -Contention & Negotiation

What is the contention rating of your home?
10 - it is common, every day 
1 - it is rare.

The goal is that contention in your home is not a common feeling, that it FEELS out of place, that you all clearly recognize that this is an unfortunate exception.

Teaching Children Obedience Part 2

If you see a child obey it is one of three things-
they wanted to do it anyway
the child is unusually compliant (rare as hen's teeth)
they have been trained "BEHIND THE SCENES"

Teaching Children Obedience Part 3

"Be a guide, not a critic."

That's where the other two parts of discipline come in- Play and Loving attention.  Drop everything and work on these so that the problem shrinks, the child feels your love, is having fun with you, instead of having you cross with him. More on this- the fun part of mothering- later.


Teaching Children Obedience Part 4

Don't be reluctant to take action.  What is better- hours, days, months of upset and contention?  Or action followed by obedience?  A calm, happy home is the goal.

Make Home the Best Place to Be

The most important thing to a home is YOU,  the mother.
Where ever you live, make it a place of peace and love.  Add as much beauty as you know how.  Remove as much of the ugly as you can.
The place to raise children is in the home.  The things they are learning from you at home are very valuable.  



Patience.  You do have it.  Just not as much as you need.  You need alot.  It takes a long time to develop patience.  There are no shortcuts.


It's how a child learns.
You've seen them at it- They are so intensely involved in their game that nothing else matters- not hunger or cold or tiredness.  The game is
 so important to them that anything else is an interruption- their eyes shine, their cheeks are rosy. They are intensely and joyfully in the moment.  

Play Part 2

SPACE, freedom, adventure, running.  Forget free range chickens, we need free range children - not cooped up and electrically coddled.  Get out that energy in healthy ways for children who are tired from burning up their energy, not tired from lethargy.

Family Night

Instead of just handling problems as they come up, it WORKS so much better to have a time when the children are receptive, because they know family night is fun.  They expect to be taught. You can work on even touchy subjects in a positive way.  You can prevent problems and strengthen character traits. 

Monthly Themes

It is always better - easier, quicker, less painful - to prevent a problem than to correct it.  If you have a dream of having a family that helps each other and enjoys being together, it is much better to teach and develop and nurture this in the early days than to try to correct it after you've come up against problems

Another Perspective on Sleep Issues

This is what I think about it after 24 years of wondering WHY babies don't come with an off switch.....
There are a few things you can do. You're probably at the stage where you've tried everything.  And go for it, do try everything - you might find something that works with your wakeful one....

Handling Anger

OK, so admit it.   When you are angry you are NOT your best self.  Pretty much, it's you at your worst.  For this reason, I think guilt is great.  It is so painful that it makes you want to do better- pushes you to become the kind of person you are striving to become.

Teaching Children to Work

Think of teaching a child to work like you teach them to ride a bike: after a fair bit of training and support they can finally do it but will still fall off.

Play Hour

You may find that when she knows she will have playtime with you, your undivided attention, she will be more willing to play happily while you do tasks later.  "We'll play together, then I have to do some work, but we have a whole hour first!  And we'll do playhour again tomorrow!"

Childhood Years

This childhood you are living with your child includes happy unhurried hours, introducing her to the big, beautiful world and enjoying her responses.   You both love spending time together and try to eliminate those things that keep you busy and apart.

Teaching Children to Pray

I would visit my grandparent's home in Canada as a small child.  This is how they did family prayer.  They set the table with the  dishes face down, all knelt beside their chairs, chose one person to pray, sat up, turned their plates over and began the meal.  I was very impressed by this and it has been my ideal.
I have never been able to make it happen like that.  But it doesn't matter how you do family prayer.  What matters is that you just DO it!.

The Art of Distraction

Look for the early warning signals, the storm approaching, and use it then.  This is preventative. And, as you get good at it, people will say things like, "Your children are so easy to manage.  They must be docile."  And you smile sweetly and say, "Yes, aren't they darlings."

Fun Things To Do List

It's a good time to do fun things at home that don't cost and encourage creative play.  There might be a few here you haven't tried yet.


The Real Part

To all you wonderful mothers who don't get enough sleep,

What part of this mother job do you like best?
Alright, go through the list of the NOT best, just to vent.
Tantrums, noise, mess, exhaustion... You mean you can love it on top of all that???

Be a Guide, Not a Critic

"Be a Guide not a Critic!"

 I had this quote on my fridge for years to try to correct my thinking and actions on bossing!

 The mother job involves a ton of bossing!  We tell them to do everything from brushing their teeth to practicing times tables.  It is very hard to get away from all this bossing. We don't like doing it, and you may have noticed it's not received very well.  Who else will get children to do all that stuff if you don't?

The Eye of The Storm

The woman is the heart of the home.
How she feels and acts affects everyone.
How you treat your husband and children is how they learn to treat you and others.

Chaos Control

Everything you bring into your home YOU'VE gotta pick up!  Those $2.00  marbles (25 of them) - You've either gotta pick them up (200 times) or be the policeman (the NICE policeman) who makes it happen.

Angel Story

A little spirit child is ready to come down to earth.
Heavenly Father says, "It's your turn. Are you ready?"
Spirit child, "No, I don't want to go. It's a strange place down there. I'm afraid."
Heavenly Father, "I will send an angel to watch over you."

Attention Span

Watch your baby.  She sees something new - say, a cup - grabs it, touches it, feels it all over, turns it round and round, tastes it, sucks on it.  She's so interested in it that she will cry if you take it away before she's done. 

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Creating a Childhood

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