Respect Parents Who Bring Their Young Children to Mass

I respect the families that choose to bring their young children to Mass. Most of the time they are really well behaved, and I think it is important to instill the habit of attending Mass in kids today. Sometimes I see parents struggling to keep their child quiet during Mass, and some people give them annoyed looks. I really dislike when people do this. The parents are simply trying to do something good. Sure, the young children might cry or have an outburst at some point, but can you blame the parents for trying to teach their kids about God? I think we all need to relax and let these parents keep doing what they’re doing. Eventually those little kid will grow up, and hopefully the good habits of their parents will help them grow into future members of your parish.

I read a post that I thought was really cool recently. It was written from the perspective of the youngest child of a family who attends Mass together. The post is titled, “A Letter to Frankie About Mom’s Mass Survival Tips”. I thought it was an awesome post because it describes how this mother has kept her family full of children under control at Mass. Hearing it told from a young child’s perspective was hilarious though.

Easing the Stress of Saving for College

A daunting task that parents have to think about is how they will save money to send their child to college. Having a college education in today’s world is an important facet in most adult’s lives. However, the cost of these college educations has done nothing but soar in recent decades. This creates a difficult situation for parents and their children too because they end up saddled with mountainous debts for years. People continue to find ways to send their children to college though, but if you are looking for some ideas we can help you out.

I read an article called, “The Top 10 Tips for Saving Money for College”, and I thought they made some good suggestions. Some of the best ideas that they suggested were making a habit of saving, starting early, and getting your kids involved in the saving when they begin working. All of these things will make paying for college that much easier.

How You Can Turn Your Kids into Bookworms

Every parent wants their child to be the kid who loves to read. However, I get the general feeling that a lot of parents that want this think that it is something a child is born with. A child isn’t born with a desire to read all the time, it is something that they grow interested in. How might a child grow interested in reading you ask? Well, typically parents who promote reading as a fun activity to their children tend to see results. If you plop your child down in front of the TV and let them watch it for hours on end, the chances they will turn it off in favor of a book are slim. If you actively read books to your children until they can learn to read on their own, you are setting them up for success. Take the initiative and make your child into a reader.

A post called, “Raising a Reader” featured on Monika’s World talked about this topic recently. The post lists ways that you can take an active approach to make reading a part of your family’s daily routine. It really isn’t that difficult to make these changes, and your child will reap the benefits of it.

Sibling Rivalry: Is It a Damaging Experience for Your Children?

I grew up with two siblings and we were always very close. We never really had an issue getting along, and did almost everything together. We have all remained close and are best friends to this day. I would say that we had a healthy sibling rivalry where we pushed each other be the best version of ourselves that we could. However we never competed against each other with hopes of embarrassing or obliterating the others. It was always a healthy and fun competition, whether it was in sports, school, or whatever else.

It recently occurred to me that some people don’t have as healthy a relationship as I do with my siblings. Some people feel quite negatively about their siblings for that matter, and are not even remotely friends with them. I wondered what their sibling rivalries were like growing up, and realized their rivalries were probably the exact opposite of what mine were like. They wanted to out-do their siblings because they didn’t like them, not because it was a healthy competition amongst friends.

My attention was drawn to sibling rivalries through a post I read called “Is Sibling Rivalry Damaging to Your Kids’ Health?” My opinion of the question asked by this post is that there isn’t a black and white answer. There are certainly some sibling rivalries like my own that ended up being a positive experience, but there are also sibling rivalries that are really negative. I think that the relationship a person has with their siblings is what makes the rivalry a positive or a negative thing. So I don’t think that sibling rivalries are damaging to a child’s health in all cases.

Making the Holidays a Little Less Hectic

The holiday season has become very overblown, and I think talking about how the holiday season has become overblown has also become overblown. Does that make sense? I’m not going to lecture everybody about how nobody realizes the true meaning of Christmas, or how greed has taken over the American population. These are things that we all know and understand. I want to focus more on how to simplify all the hoopla that surrounds this time of year. I’m not the Grinch or anything either so don’t jump to that conclusion. I simply just want a more focused holiday season.

I recently read a post about 3 Ways to Simplify the Holiday Season on Mom Life Today. The post had some really great ideas about how you can make the holidays a little less hectic this year. I promise that none of the involve cancelling Christmas either!

Are there some excessive parts of the holidays you wish you could trim out?

Youth Sports: Teaching Your Kids to Have a Positive Attitude

Youth sports are a great opportunity for your child to grow as an individual, while also learning lessons and making friends. As a parent, you hope that your child will be successful in youth sports. This isn’t always the case though, and this is part the lessons they will learn being an athlete. Keeping a positive attitude even when things don’t go your way in key, and parents should help to remind their children of this when they struggle. You need to encourage your child to keep trying, and also make clear to them that having a negative attitude will only make things worse.

I read a post on JBM Thinks today that asked an important sports parent question. Do you cheer when your child comes in last place? The post was about a young boy with autism who came in last place at a school race recently. Everybody cheered the loudest for him and he had an awesome time. I felt this story was inspiring and it also coincided with what I talked about above. Having a positive attitude is so key in sports and many other things in life. This is a lesson you should be instilling into your children; and don’t forget to cheer them on regardless of what place they come in!

Baby Steps: Remember to Baby Proof Your Home

New parents are often unprepared for the things their child will do. For instance the first time a child learns to move on their own can be a really exciting event. Parents are typically happy and proud at moments like the first time their baby crawls. Things might be forgotten though like is there a gate in front of the staircase or are there covers over all the electrical outlets.

A blog called Tim and Olive recently posted about their baby and how she recently began crawling. They were not ready for their child’s free movements around the house and had to make some quick adjustments. The post I read, “Dear Baby, Please Don’t Walk Yet” was really great. They blogged about how quickly their baby’s crawling changed their lives, and wondered how much more drastic the change will be when she is walking. Many parents are excited for their children to learn how to walk, but maybe they shouldn’t be! It certainly makes things a lot easier to control.

What are some of the most important things to baby proof when your child is learning to walk/crawl?

When Getting Your Teen to Do Their Homework Becomes a Struggle

Making sure that your child does their homework is an integral part of being a responsible parent. If you reinforce these habits starting at a young age it can improve the chances that when your child gets older they will continue these practices on their own. However even if you instill good homework habits into your child, they might reach their teen years and lose touch. Many teens become distracted by other things, and begin to take school not as seriously.

If you notice your teen slacking on their homework or other school responsibilities it could be time to get more closely involved. A recent article on Empowering Parent titled, “7 Ways to Stop the Parent-Child Power Struggle Over Homework” could be useful to you and your child. The article talks about ways to treat this delicate situation.

How do you approach getting your child to cooperate and do their homework?

New Year’s Resolutions: How to Succesfully Use That Gym Membership

With the final month of 2012 creeping up on us people will begin thinking of their New Year’s resolution. So many people every year buy a gym membership and say they are going to lose weight. Getting into a routine and making gym visits a habit are not easy things to do. Don’t set yourself up for failure by thinking you’ll go to the gym every day. It’s completely okay to ease into this New Year’s Resolution. Aim for three or four days a week to start, and don’t over-do it with the weights. A solid thirty to forty minutes of cardiovascular exercise will certainly suffice. This could mean the treadmill, elliptical, or stationary bike whatever you prefer, but do try to have some variety in your routine.

Some people are also intimidated by the gym atmosphere, which is definitely understandable. The post work gym scene tends to get a bit crowded. Maybe these “5 Ways to Defeat Gym Anxiety” will help you if you worry about going to the gym. Making a New Year’s Resolution is a great thing to do!

What will your New Year’s Resolution be for 2013?

Parenting Tip: How to Save Money During the Holiday Season

The holiday season is here again, and for many families out there it can be a struggle. The commercialized monster that Christmas has become presents a big issue for parents who have difficulties making ends meet. Let’s not forget what Christmas is really about this year, and remember that a thoughtful gift is the best gift. It might not be the easiest to convey that message to your children, but it is a lost concept that I think should be ingrained into society more.

I recently read a post on JBM Thinks titled, “Money Saving Holiday Tips for Parents”. The article might be able to give you some good ideas about how to make it all come together this holiday season!

What methods do you use at home to save money around this time of year?