Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Parenting Beyond the Pit of Despair ~ Tip #1 in a series


SPECIAL NOTE: This post was originally published under Reflections Beneath the Poetz Tree (My very first blog creation.) It was titled: Picture This! Parenting Trick #1 and published on 10/14/2014.  I decided to resurrect it because I can still relate to it even after three years and 3months.  These same personalities remain strong and continue to challenge the heck out of me.









  Three of My Characters
Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom


In a World of Writer Mom Moment not so long ago...

Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom


I have three children ages 12, 9, and 7 years.  (Note: Today they are 15, 12, and 10 years old.) They each have very strong personalities that have a tendency to collide with intensity and frequency.   When that happens, stars explode and planets move out of their way.  And although meteorologists would deny that my children's behavior has a direct and supernatural  impact upon the weather...I am often convinced that the seasonal storms that roll in can be directly attributed to my children's tempestuous relationship with each other.  At least it feels that way to me.

I know that parenting children who are given the opportunity to express their own opinions and "share" their emotions presents unique challenges.  It is also important for them to have a place to learn skills that will serve them well throughout life.  I want them to have experiences that allow them to practice self-regulation, appropriate social interactions, and acceptable behaviors when released to the community.  The consequence of providing this "practice" is that you will often want to bang your fists against a pillow and shake your head until your brain turns to scrambled eggs. 

(Note: This was going on back then...)

The media has recently given much attention to the NFL player who whipped his child with a switch to "discipline" him.  The short term effect of instilling fear and pain is real and tangible to the child.  But in the long run, what will that child really learn about that interaction?  Planning for how to interact with a child and preparing to teach a  child about consequences is an emotionally draining task that requires on going maintenance.  Be forewarned:  You will repeat yourself a bazillion times and often feel like your words are absorbed into the ozone where they dissipate and  becomes inactive.  It is important to have the mind set that parenting involves a lot of repetition, frequent revisions, and a lot of input from a supporting cast. 

Fighting and arguing are prime examples of issues that occur among siblings.  "Stop looking at me like that" and "Stop touching me" are common phrases that fly around during waking hours.  When you have children who each wish they were an only child, it can be difficult if not impossible to convince all parties that you are being fair to everyone.  Someone is always going to feel maligned. Inevitably someone will to attempt to use that magical power of childhood known as "manipulation."  Smart little buggers.  They know exactly which buttons to push to make mommy feel guilty.  And because mommy was raised to feel guilty based on her parents' techniques...well you can imagine what a perfect storm that could potentially create.  Like I said...these are smart children.



One of the Independents
Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom


So I came up with a few tricks of my own that have started to alleviate some of the stress that comes with parenting children who are actually given the opportunity to express their emotions without fear of "the switch" or other form of "that's the way I was raised" parenting that has been discussed in the media.  Last night was a perfect example of how reminiscing can be a great way to realign siblings with each other and help them see the strong bonds that exist...even though they might argue at times.


Parenting Tip #1
Goal:  Remind siblings of their strong bond with each other
Dream Result: 24 hours of peaceful co-existence
Reminder Cue:  "I loved seeing those pictures of us having fun together." 

Last night my brother came over so we could record Happy 100th Birthday" messages for our Grandmother.  (Can you believe 100 years old?!)  He also had photos and videos on his computer from several years ago when the children were much younger.  We looked at those pictures and videos together and rediscovered some of the fun we had together.  There were snow day pictures where everyone was bundled up to keep warm.  We had bubble day where my daughter screamed with joy at the large bubbles we blew outside.  There was a picture of the youngest son learning to walk.



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 Update as of 01/16/2018
By the way, Grandma just turned 103! 
This year she is going for 104!  Incredible, right?


We pointed out that even as a baby, the youngest one wanted to follow his older brother around.  Pointing out those connections and having visual proof that we had many happy times together was just the remedy we needed.  Sometimes we forget those opportunities to connect when we are so busy dealing with the day to day details.  



Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom
Memories from a moment without fighting. A treasure indeed!


So if you have strong willed children who like to argue with each other, take heart.  You are not alone.  It is not an easy task to parent these children.  I can assure you, I would much rather have children who can speak their mind, have opinions, and are encouraged to express their true feelings than to be a parent who makes all my children's decisions for them.  The world can be harsh.  Children need to be able to speak up for themselves, stand up for their beliefs, and make decisions that are wise and in their best interest.  That doesn't just happen automatically.  We have to nurture those self-advocacy skills from the time they are young. 
So get out those family photos and videos and pop some popcorn the next time you need a break from the discord.  It's magical.  I look forward to hearing from you and would love to post your "Parenting Tricks."  have a wonderful day and a Blessed Week!


Making memories and documenting dreams can become a part of your family tradition! Here's one simple way to gather around the computer or kitchen table and create the evidence you will crave once everyone has grown up.  Trust me, these moments will fly by. 

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Bathroom Etiquette ~ May the Flush Be Ever In Your Favor

Here's something you can ponder instead of worrying about who is using the public restrooms.  Do your business, mind your business, and don't worry about someone else's business in the restrooms. 

OMG I just read another post about the transgender bathroom dilemma. Guess where I saw that comment? My goal this year as a writer and advocate is to become the nicest TROLL ever. 


T - Teach
       R - Respect
         O - Observe
        L - Listen
          L - Learn


In this particular case, people were off on a tangent thanks to one person's comment. Time for a little humor, so here's what I posted in the most respectful, funny way in an effort to divert the feed. 


Here's my comment:


 
" Dear Lord, it's the bathroom dilemma again? The truth is, if the ladies room is full and there's an empty stall in the men's room when I have a bathroom "emergency" then guess what? I don't care where it is...that stall is for me versus having another type of disaster. (Some of you probably know what I'm talking about.)


When you have a situation where your digestive system is not cooperating, you'll decide pretty quick the significance of where you need to go. Aside from that, many of you have most likely been in a rest room with someone who is transgender and you'd never even know it. Many places of business now have "family" rest rooms too. We can discuss worse case scenarios all day and never reach an agreement on this one.


Travel to other areas of the world or find yourself in a situation where you need to relieve yourself by the side of a road because there's no bathroom at all. Perspective, self awareness, a good dose of mind your own business, and get out of the restroom quickly can go a long way. And for goodness sakes....I expect better than name calling here. If you wanna hear some really disturbing bathroom tales, me and my horrible digestive system can entertain for hours."



Sigh. There will never be total agreement on this. But let's be honest. We just need a place to go when it's time to go.



Additional Comments added Saturday, 01/14/2017


UPDATE: Ironic that this would happen shortly after I posted my article, but here is what actually happened yesterday while I was shopping with my 3 children in WalMart. I went to the customer service area at the back of the store to use the restroom. A WalMart employee was standing guard near the women's restroom and two other women were standing in line as if waiting. They looked at me and said "The restroom is closed." I asked, "What about the one at the front of the store?" I was informed, "That one is closed too and we were told to come back here." So basically, there were NO women's restrooms available. I looked at the WalMart employee and said, "Are both the restrooms back here closed?" She replied, "No. Just this one (referring to the women's)."


Without hesitation, and with the utmost of confidence in my mission, I declared, "I don't care which bathroom this is; I have to pee." I proceeded to enter the men's restroom and secured a stall where I quickly did my business, got out and washed my hands, and exited just as another person was entering the restroom. The individual didn't even blink, question me, or stop on their way to a stall. End of story. I had to go, there was only one option, and I did what needed to be done without disturbing anyone else. Of course, the women who were waiting before I went in were not around when I came out. Perhaps they found another option. Each of us will have to comes to terms with our comfort level regarding this topic. 



The main point is:  You need to exercise the same level of awareness and caution as pre-transgender bathroom rights.  There will always be extreme examples and concerns to cite as credible concerns for some individuals.  The reality is that we all need to look out for each other, be vigilant of variances in safety, consider our surroundings, and exercise good judgment when your gut tells your something isn't comfortable. 


Regardless of how someone identifies, each person deserves respect and a sense of security within their community.  If you have time to be worried about verifying the accuracy of who uses public bathrooms, it may be time to reconsider using restrooms outside of your home and invest in your own port-a-potty.  Just out of curiosity...who really looks that closely at each person during their time in the bathroom?  Surely I'm not the only one who just wants to go in, do my business, and exit after washing my hands.  


So there you have it.  Just another perspective on the bathroom agenda.  Hoping you all make good choices in what you choose to support.  Encouraging you to be respectful, aware of your surroundings in each circumstance, and use discernment before passing judgment on what you do not understand. And wherever or whenever you decide it necessary to relieve yourself, may the flush be ever in your favor.


 Kindest Wishes,
Mary
 

https://www.facebook.com/writermomadvocate/

copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom



Monday, January 8, 2018

A View from the Lighthouse 2018


Free Graphic attributed to https://cdn.pixabay.com/photo/2017/06/04/22/55/lighthouse-2372424_960_720.jpg



Special Note: I had planned to write a follow up a few days ago regarding http://www.worldofwritermom.org/2018/01/world-of-writer-moms-ten-commandments.html  (See end of post.) A few days late, but here is the one I chose to write about.


Today I read another interesting post from The Activist Mommy. My goal this year is to continue to respectfully call out readers (and writers) regarding their generalizations, assumptions, stereotypes, labels, and visual challenges. There are times I think I might unfollow  The Activist Mommy due to the tremendous outpouring of vitriol from some of her followers. Instead, I decided to write.


I encourage you to visit and read (and heck...follow if you want) The Activist Mommy.  Awareness of differing viewpoints and perspectives is critical. Provide yourselves with the insights necessary to decide how you want to make a difference and effect positive change in our world and in our own communities.  



  

World of Writer Mom's View


When you light your page on fire using your talents as a writer and activist, watch your forest burn, and choose to let readers add fuel to that raging fire, it is also important to provide ways to remedy the burn scar. If there are no resources provided for rehabilitation after a fire, nothing can grow, live, and thrive under those adverse conditions.  You might have the guide book, but without accurate translations, insights, and resources from accompanying experts in the field, assembling a cohesive team that is truly reflective of that guide book is risky.  There may be a high chance of inaccuracies and misplaced understanding of complex concepts.



After reading some comments against Oprah Winfrey regarding her speech at the Golden Globes award ceremony on Sunday evening 01/02/2017, I found another perspective of Oprah Winfrey regarding human need for validation from another writer at  http://healthyspirituality.org/exploring-the-human-need-to-seek-validation/  Perspective and research.  They have valid placement in our collective efforts.   



Here is the entire speech Oprah presented last night


Here is another article I found after researching a related topic. I like this article because it provides specific strategies on creating goals according to the topic presented. These are the type of insights that can become valuable to readers. http://healthyspirituality.org/writing-spiritual-goals/


Please share this and consider following my journey this year. 


I will continue to read opinions that differ from mine, because I believe it is important to understand where things stand from a variety of perspectives. It is only in understanding our current situation that we can begin to move forward and consider how to set goals to create awareness...on all levels. This is not a situation of one side is the only right side. (Though I hear you that some individuals believe there is one and only right side.) Please consider there are infinite variables to be taken into consideration.


It's human nature to pick sides. It's human nature to want our opinions validated. It's human nature to become protective of our personal causes and those who are in harm's way. It's human nature to want to demonstrate our righteousness and defend our belief systems. There are 7,593,701,707 people in the world at the moment I looked up this number. It is ever changing. http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/ Look at this site and think about how incredibly complex it must be to even think that these changes can keep up with all the opinions, beliefs, life experiences, points of view, daily challenges, political situations, etc....that occur.


To expect that everyone is going to be on the same page at the same time for the same amount of time is futile.


Change is a process; it's not a snap your fingers, click your heels together three times, do a little dance, make a little love statement, and sing we are the world as sprinkles of fairy dust descend upon everything. Change is so much more complex and dynamic. You can choose to draw your line in the sand and stay on your end of the beach, or you can be part of a plan to understand the waves of the ocean, the erosion process in that line of sand, and the solutions that need to occur when challenges wash up on shore.


How do you want to make a difference from your starting point? 
My response to The Activist Mommy's post:
  
So what is your plan to create the kind of world you envision? I am interested in hearing your goals, strategies, and measurable outcomes. It's fine to have an opinion about someone's view points and methods. It's great to encourage change and promote healthier attitudes, perspectives, and wellness. It is also important to define your plan so there is a clear understanding of direction. If you're not prepared to offer an alternative, then perhaps it's time to figure out the piece to this puzzle. It's easy for readers here to offer judgments, labels, assumptions, and generalizations. The hard part is figuring out your personal role, specific activities for participation, and a commitment to follow through on these plans of action. I'm waiting and listening to the responses here. This is the information I'm interested in from The Activist Mommy in 2018.





Planning to engage in commentary with The Activist Mommy?
Here are a few resources for your consideration.







 

Inviting you to also follow me on Twitter at 
https://twitter.com/PTZTree
  #WorldofWriterMom #WriterMomAdvocate #TheActivistMommy #GoldenGlobeAwards #OprahWinfrey #ViewfromtheLighthouse




Wishing all of you a week of adventures,
solutions to your challenges, and
 answers to your prayers.



Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom
Kindest Wishes,
Mary





Sunday, January 7, 2018

Digestive Concerns in Babies and Toddlers

What to do when meals upset their digestive system.


 Disclaimer
(This is one option. World of Writer Mom recommends that you discuss any changes in
 your child's diet with a developmental pediatrician.) 




copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom




When my children were babies, I tried breast feeding and ended up having to supplement their intake with additional assistance from formula. We ended up doing a combination of both as I struggled to find the right formula for their sensitive tummies.



I personally had a history of upset stomach from the time I was an infant. Perhaps it was possible that whatever issues were present during childhood, I had passed along to my babies. I was lactose intolerant and even into adulthood have had sensitivities to certain foods and situations.  As a teen I once drank milk with a warm cookie and ended up being taken to the Emergency Room due to the severity of my pain. 



My mother did try a product for me back in the day called "acidophilus" milk. (Sounds yummy, huh?) It  supposedly had eliminated lactose from the milk. It was okay, but I couldn't stand the taste. It seemed incredibly more expensive than regular milk. I ended up avoiding milk products or paying the consequences.



When my first child was born fifteen years ago, I was shocked at how regular, iron based formulas negatively impacted her digestive system. She cried, had lots of gas, and was miserable after her feedings from the formulas we tried. There were times her bowel movements were so acidic that she developed difficult rashes. Alternatively, there were times she became so constipated I cried with her. Soy milk was not helpful either. We gave her special drops to help alleviate the pain (with the supervision of her pediatrician) but I wished there were alternatives.  



My second child's situation was similar. He had diarrhea and rashes plus a lot of reflux.  Again, we tried various formulas and the special tummy drops. I believe it was a few months into our dilemma that one particular brand of formula came onto the market for "sensitive tummies" and that seemed to finally offer a little relief. We transitioned to a newer brand of lactose free milk available when my baby became older and even though it was expensive, we were happy that it worked well for him.


By the time child number three arrived, we were already anticipating what could happen and were a little better prepared for the tummy upsets. Still, it would have been incredible to have some alternative to discuss with the pediatrician.


When I discovered this product on line, I felt amazed and really wished it had been available (or I had been aware of the benefits) when my own babies were small.  I also didn't have the information regarding digestion of proteins that might have been helpful to me.  It wasn't necessarily just the lactose that was a problem.  It was the ability to break down the proteins in cow's milk.



There is plenty of research to indicate that goat's milk is compatible for human consumption without the side effects of lactose ladden milk products. 



The following information is taken directly from the Kabrita website. You are invited to read about this product and if it sounds interesting to you, please share with your child's developmental pediatrician. Perhaps it could offer some relief for your aching tummies. 




https://account.shareasale.com/image/73892/KA17-0029_KBA_SEM_Banner_Ads_GentleN_02.jpg


 Research more products 
Invitation to Purchase 
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Who we are
KABRITA is a line of gentle Goat Milk Formula and Goat Milk Baby Foods made with naturally easy-to-digest, non-GMO goat milk that is gentle on tiny tummies. KABRITA Goat Milk Foods are produced without any exposure to antibiotics, pesticides, growth hormones or preservatives, and are free from artificial colors and flavors.

Why KABRITA
Goat milk protein forms a gentler curd in the tummy compared to cow milk protein, and has also been shown to be broken down and digested faster! At KABRITA, our products are made with love, backed with science and designed to offer gentle nutrition for little ones. KABRITA Goat Milk Foods have a mildly sweet and fresh taste and smell that little ones love. Recommended by pediatricians throughout the U.S.

Our Products

Perfect options for infants and toddlers. From meal times to snacks, Kabrita has a selection of nutritional items that are gentle for the tummy.





 Kalabrita provides America's first non-GMO goat milk yogurt!



Mama and her third little buglet.
Copyright 2018 World of Writer Mom





If only I had known about Kabrita!




KABRITA Goat Milk Foods are produced without any exposure to antibiotics, pesticides, growth hormones or preservatives, and are free from artificial colors and flavors.



Special Offer





Wishing everyone a healthy and tummy ache free year!
Kindest Wishes,
Mary 
(Mom of 3 plus several "Bonus" children)





Required Disclosure Statement

World of Writer Mom.org is part of an affiliate program. This means that if you make a purchase through the links I promote on this site or on its related social media platforms, I may earn a small commission from that action to support World of Writer Mom.org

Important: You will NOT be charged more when buying products through my link.

I enjoy taking time to research products that look interesting and may provide helpful resources to you and your family. The opinions, knowledge, and experiences I write about are my own.

Real Life Awareness:

Recommendations do not imply liability, responsibility for disappointments or failed expectations, or regret over budgeting woes. I trust each reader to use their own good judgement when it comes to knowing what will work best for you and your family. (Because...well...I am not the ultimate decision maker, judge, or source of approval for anyone except myself...and my children...until they are legally allowed to represent themselves.)

Thank You for taking time to read, participate, and share your adventures with me. Hopefully, we'll find something to occasionally purchase, enjoy, and use in an effort to create a special moment.

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About Me

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I have over 20 years of experience in Early Childhood Development Birth-Age 5 including work in classrooms and as an Infant/Toddler Program Manager.  I have several writing projects in progress including a resource book for parents of infants and infant room teachers in a full day child development (school) program.  The book will provide families with information about what to expect and how to monitor their child's progress in an Infant room.  My second book project involves how to cope with family challenges, lessons in forgiveness, dealing with a spouse's addiction, and reinventing yourself along the way.  I am excited about all of these projects and am currently accepting comments regarding experiences my readers have had placing their child into a full day child care program.  I would also like to hear from Infant room teachers.