Tag Archive | spreading joy

Boogie Nights with the Kids, by Susan A. Haid, Lily's Truth

  by  Susan A. Haid/ Lily’s Truth

Available at Target and other online local Retailers.

Available at Target and other online local Retailers.

A few months ago, I purchased a multi-colored, rotating disco ball lamp for my kids. My intent was to have some fun from time to time dancing with my kids. What has surprised me is this: the addition of this tacky, retro-style lamp to my family room decor has turned our TV-dominated evenings into Boogie Nights.

My kids are 4, 8 and 11 years old. When I initially plugged in the “ball”, of course, I was the only one dancing for the first ten minutes.  My kids glared at me like I was the weirdest mom on Planet Earth.  Then, one child couldn’t resist the urge to move…then the next…and the next.  Soon, we were shaking, lurching, rocking, and bopping like it was 1999.  Since then, my kids have not stopped shaking their booties. We dance every day, at least once, sometimes more.   We have fun, we laugh, we  move it, move it. Try it and see the effects of this simple, no rules approach to joyfulness.

Can you imagine dancing with your parents when you were a kid? This is a memory I am thrilled my children will have to cherish. I will cherish it too, more than words can express.

These Boogie Days and Boogie Nights provide a beautiful, healthy example of liberation to our children. Moving the body frees the spirit, not through discipline or structure but rather through free expression. Free Expression.  Let those words sink in…

I want to raise my children to be free of repression. I want to raise my children to be wildly creative. I want my children to have the the outrageous courage to think outside the box. I want my children to know that every day there is time for joy.

So, for the rest of our lives, my kids and I will be dancing like the stars in our little family room. We won’t be waiting for a party, or a wedding, or a night out to do the wild thing.

By the time you read this, I’ll be workin’ it with my kids, or maybe even by myself.  It doesn’t matter. It’s a happy thing…cut loose…try it.  Have you watched your kids dance lately?  It’s pretty entertaining.  You won’t be able to wipe the smile off your face.  I guarantee it.

For more tips and tools for parents, visit www.lilystruth.com where you will find cutting edge, New Energy concepts in parenting.

Teaching Your Kids Responsability by Susan A. Haid, Lily's Truth

by Susan A. Haid

How long of a tether do you keep on your kids? The struggle for authority is an age-old dilemma. Who chooses? How much authority should we give our kids? Freedom is something we all need, yet how do we structure our lives so that we get what we need and our children have the appropriate setting in which to make their own choices, learn and grow?
As long as our kids are at home with us, there is a safety net beneath them. Certainly we want the most for our children. We want them to surpass our goals and achieve ones of their own. So we want them to grow. We want them to face challenges. As parents, where do we begin? How do we know what is appropriate, and how do we know exactly what our kids need to do to learn responsibility? This is a nagging question, and although there is no easy way through the parenting process, there are certain basic things we can do to help our kids become responsible adults.

Here are 5 basic strategies to help kids learn the basics:

1. Help kids develop knowledge of themselves and appreciation of their individuality. We must give our kids the freedom to choose which activities and interests they wish to explore. It is our job to facilitate their discovery of their individual and very personal interests by listening to who they are and what they tell us. This means we do not impose our interests and ideas upon them. After offering to them various different opportunities, we accept and support their choices without judgment.

2. Help kids take ownership of their choices. We need to look at every experience our kids have as an opportunity to cultivate self-understanding. This means that when our kids make choices for themselves, they learn to evaluate the consequences without judgment from us. This gives them time to figure out certain life lessons for themselves within the parameter of a safe setting. This is far more impactful that mere rhetoric from us. We are here to listen and offer support during this process. It is a tremendously valuable experience to let our kids make reasonable choices cradled within the opportunity to start over when things don’t turn out as anticipated.

3. Help kids learn how to manage their time. As parents, we help our kids to do this by setting forth our expectations of their responsibilities for the day (homework, athletic or music practice, chores etc.) and then allowing them to accomplish their duties independently, of course with a gentle reminder or two along the way. There should be reasonable consequences in place for failure to accomplish general expectations.

4. Help kids to accept their feelings without judgment. This starts with our ability to accept our own feelings without judgment. Our kids observe how we accept, experience and appropriately express our feelings. This gives them the standard for accepting and expressing their own feelings. Then, we must give our kids the space to appropriately feel their feelings without judgment. This gives our kids the beautiful knowledge about how to take responsibility for their own feelings when they are in a safe space to do so.

5. Help our kids to set their goals for the day, weeks or months ahead. We must set aside some time to listen to what our kids are hoping to experience in the days, week and months ahead. This gives us the opportunity to discuss what might be possible for our child to accomplish and experience with our help and support. This helps our kids learn how to take charge of their life by actively pursuing their developing interests by making them become a reality.

Setting forth strict and uncompassionate guidelines deprives our kids of their ultimate authority in the long run. Conversely, setting forth no guidelines whatsoever undermines the development of a child’s sense of authority and mastery over their life.
Let kids see the results of their own choices. Let them hear the impact of their own words. They must be able to experiment with the world before them.

Part 2 of this article coming soon! In the meantime, for more information about conscious parenting, or for more information about Susan A. Haid and Lily’s Truth, visit http://www.lilystruth.com.

Daymaker Challenge Day-16 Pass It On By Dahna Weber and Deb Gillespie

This daymaker challenge will be really fun for you and the kids! All you need is a little piece of colored construction paper, the kind your kids are always using for art projects. Cut a piece out in the shape of a heart or something fun. Write a little cheerful note on it. For Example, “Enjoy your day”. Then when you go outside to the market or somewhere public, give it to some one you do not know who happens to be walking by. Then tell them to, “Pass It On!” Spread the joy near and far!

By Dahna Weber and Deb Gillespie

DAYMAKER CHALLENGE DAY 11- BAGGING IT! BY DEB GILLESPIE AND DAHNA WEBER

I love this one! So you’re at the grocery store and see you an elderly woman or man struggling to carry their grocery bag out of the market and to their car. They are usually with cane in one hand and bag in the other. Sometimes they are pushing their walker, struggling to carry that bag to the car. Here’s your chance to step in and give them a little hand. I know that the elderly are generally pretty proud folks, but it would be nice if we could at least offer them a hand with their bags. I used to nudge my older son or daughter to offer help. Now they do it on their own. Let’s be kind to our elders and help them out when ever we see the opportunity.

 

By Deb Gillespie and Dahna Weber

Daymaker Challenge Day 9- Exploring Children by Deb Gillespie and Dahna Weber

This one is for the kids.  We do things everyday for our kids and sometimes we make special days for them.  Days like the amusement park, birthday parties, movies with a friend, etc.  How about making an ordinary day special?  Here is our tip on how to do that- Plan the unplanned!  Call it the exploratory adventure/excursion.  You can make it as large as you like (wear pirate and sailor outfits) or keep it simple.  First step- block off an hour for your kids.  Second step- start off with a regular activity…. say taking a walk to the park and then relinquish control.  Third step…..let your kids lead you off course…and enter into their instinctive explorers world.   Let them control the situation.  Don’t say the word no unless you have to.  Instead of avoiding the forest part of the park go into it.  Instead of walking around the puddles…splash around in them.  Instead of using utensils eat with your hands.  Let them guide you.  The adventure of doing something totally different from the norm feels adventurous.  

Just today was a professional day at our school so we gathered up some friends and headed off to the park.  What we came across was a sheet of ice over the sand covering the volleyball court.  We stomped, and crashed rocks through the ice, and dug up bits of wood.  We spent 30 minutes just letting ourselves go.  It was so simple, didn’t cost a cent, let the kids get some energy out and be imaginative.  It was so much fun.  One kid even carried a piece of ice home.  I am sure that is the one shiny piece of the day they will remember. 

by Deb Gillespie and Dahna Weber

DAYMAKER CHALLENGE DAY 8- FREE HUGS FOR EVERYONE BY DEB GILLESPIE AND DAHNA WEBER

Now this is something everyone can do! I saw this done once. It is a beautiful way to reach out to all. Now don’t be shy. Make a little sign or sticker that you can attach to your shirt or coat. The sign will say, “Free Hugs for Everyone”. Be open and ready to give away free hugs to everyone who approaches you. You will be utterly amazed by how good you will feel and by how much of a difference you will make to another person’s day. Moms, I encourage you to have your kids do this right along with you. You will be leading by example and teaching your children about random acts of kindness.

 

By Deb Gillespie and Dahna Weber

DAYMAKER CHALLENGE DAY 7- WALKING THE DOG BY DAHNA WEBER AND DEB GILLESPIE

This one is for you dog lovers out there. How about offering to take your friend or neighbour’s dog out for a walk? As many of you know, dogs need lots of fresh air and exercise. Many dog owners don’t have as much time as they need to get their dogs out for walks. This is where you come in. Volunteer to take on a shift. If you have never tried walking a dog, you may be surprised how enjoyable it is. Mom’s, get your kids out there to help. They will love it as much as the dogs will. And, it’s a great way to meet many of your neighbours who may be out walking as well!

 

By Dahna Weber and Deb Gillespie