a sad teenager thinking Oh, to be a teenager again. I remember my teenage years very fondly compared to the stresses of being a parent and head of the household. As adults and parents many of us are faced with  unending bills and various responsibilities that can sometimes get the best of all of us. As adults we have to deal with more complex issues and responsibilities that may have surpassed our wildest dreams and expectations. Clearly, when we were younger, we never fully understood the complexities of being an adult until you became one. Naturally, your teenage child may not be able to fully comprehend this truth. However, that does not mean the situations they have to deal with is any less important to them and understanding this helps us better communicate with our teens. READ More on Parenting and Understanding Teenage Stress

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Happy PumpkinsAre you planning a Halloween Bash? The right decorations can make or break your party. Too scary and you’ll have little ones crying to go home, not scary enough and the older kids will be bored. Here are a few suggestions for decorating an age appropriate party.

A Pumpkin Themed Party

What’s better than walking into a home full of amazing pumpkins carved in all shapes, sizes and even colors? To decorate your home for a pumpkin themed party choose several pumpkins ranging in size from the small gourds perfect for tabletop use to the gigantic prize winning pumpkins perfect for starting the party at your doorstep. READ More on Halloween Party Decorating Ideas

Parenting Tips to Help Keep The Communication Lines Open Between Both Parent and Child

With young kids it sometimes requires a little extra work to effectively communicate with them, and to understand what they are trying to say. father and sonIn order to be a more effective parent and develop good parenting skills we need to effectively communicate with our children. It is easy, not only at a young age, but to misunderstand what they are trying to say or do and get upset because we think they are not listenting to us. Communication is a two-way street, you and your child or teen need to practice listening and talking to each other. Learning to talk and listen when they are young will let you be prepared, as they get older and harder to communicate with. Talking to your children is not a natural skill it is a learned activity. Here are some ways to keep communication lines open between you and your child for better parenting when they are teens.

Do you listen to your children? Many of us may be busy doing dishes, helping to cook dinner, working on the car, or mowing the lawn, and are so wrapped up in other things that we may not always stop to really listen. This is an important part of communication. Take the time now to listen to your children because we may not have many opportunities when they are older. Stop what you are doing, look your child in the eye and listen. Let them know what they are saying is important to you. Listen with an open-mind and control your emotions while listening to a child unburden themselves. READ More on How Well Do You Communicate With Your Kids?

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by Stacey Schifferdecker
young girl talking on cell phoneIf anyone had told me a few years ago that I would be getting a cell phone for my 13-year-old son, I would have laughed. Back then, I didn’t even have a cell phone myself and I saw no reason for young teens to have them. But guess what? When we renewed our plan back in April, we added our son to it and got him his own phone. He’s not much of a phone person and doesn’t use it that much. But now, if I get in caught in traffic on the way to pick him up from school, I can let him know. When he goes somewhere with the youth at church, he can call when he is on his way back so neither of us have to cool our heels waiting in the parking lot. So really, the phone is for me as much as, if not more, than for Kegan.
If you are considering getting a cell phone for your child, here are some factors to consider:READ More on How Young Is Too Young For A Cell Phone?

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mom with her two young daughtersWithout a doubt, kids seem to change very fast. There is always a new challenge, and as parents we need to understand the phases our children go through, and to realize that we need to change our parenting styles to the situation. Parenting a child means being adaptable to the many changes each child goes through as they begin to develop and mature. Skills need to be changed and adapted as the child grows, matures, and explores new territories. There are some phases of development that each child should go through to be able to advance to the next level. It is unavoidable that sometimes this will get them into trouble. As a child grows they go from being bubbly, determined, and cautious to sassy, bossy, impulsive, and defiant. What a challenge it is to channel these energies in a positive direction. The same stubbornness that keeps your child in trouble is also the stubbornness that gives them the drive to master a new talent. Parents sometimes can have a hard time curbing their stubbornness without stunting their development. READ More on Flexible Parenting – Adapting To Your Changing Child

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Halloween is almost here - picture of a friendly ghost and pumpkinHalloween is just a little over a month away Are you planning a Halloween party? Or are you just looking at cooking up something fun for your kids? Here are some of my favorite halloween recipes that are sure to delight and taste great too. How about some Pumpkin Muffins, or Spooky Honey Popcorn Balls? And to wet the kids whistles, why not try some Ghoulish Punch? Here are the recipes:READ More on Halloween Recipe Favorites

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super confident boyAs parents, we are really responsible for helping to develop self-confidence and self-esteem in our children. But what is self-esteem?  In the very simplest of terms it is feeling good about oneself. It also relates to how we feel the need to be accepted and valued by our peers and the adults who are important to us. So as a parent, how do we build self-esteem in our child?
First, we must respect our children to build self-esteem. Part of parenting is teaching by example. It is critical to show your child that he or she is important by showing them respect, and in turn, by showing them respect they will feel self-esteem. This is a situation where it is hand-in-glove.READ More on Parenting and Building Your Childs Self-Esteem

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