How do you deal with a teenage daughter who has been invited to the X-Games but can’t go because of a torn ACL?

January 6, 2011 at 8:31 pm | Posted in ACL recovery, Moms of talented teens, Mothers, Self Esteem, sports, teenagers | Leave a comment
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So my daughter was cruising along the path of success.  She qualified for and was invited to international events.  And she podiumed pretty much at all her stops.  With her greatest gold being the Junior World Championships last August.

This fall she was invited to the Dew Tour- a first ever for the ladies in her sport.  What a cool thing to be able to do!  Only her knee got in the way.  It had started to tear in the summer and decided to complete the tear on Dec 17, while in a one-day competition.  Dec 18 was the Dew tour comp.

She had to come home.  As she was coming home from Colorado to New Hampshire, she and I independently realized that if she were to stay at home- even with the most awesome of all home school projects that we could think of- she would go crazy and I would go more crazy trying to keep her from going crazy.  It would be an utter disaster.

We knew not only would she need rehab and to utilize her brain, she would desperately need to get out of the house for a purpose with a time commitment every day.

Luckily for us Plymouth State University is just down the road.

On Monday Dec 20, before even going to see the Doctor, we headed to Plymouth.  We were able to rather easily enroll her in the Frost School with classes beginning Jan. 3.  One class was in person five days a week, the other online.  Whew, that would take care of brain stimulation and having to get out of the house everyday in January.

Tuesday Dec 22 we headed over to Dartmouth-Hitchcock to see Dr. Carr, get the MRI done, and start prehab physical therapy with Steve Vincente.

The call came the next day with the results slightly worse than predicted.  Her ACL was torn and there was some meniscus tear as well.  Neither of us was prepared for that part.

We were able to get through all the Christmas festivities with joy and laughter.  Prehab was off to a great start- the swelling going way down and the range of motion going way up.

On Dec 31, she received her invite to the X Games.  Needless to say, we were all stunned by the bittersweet accomplishment.  She cried- no she sobbed.  Everyone we have told has had the same reaction- An initial total wow that slides into OMG she can’t go realization.

Strange, but it really helps to have that reaction.  To know that even for our friends this is really a terrible blow.

So we seemed to be on the right road to physical and mental health.

BUT

There is another aspect of being the mom of an injured-healing athlete.  That is the range of emotions going on in her- from confidence to panic to depression to loss of sense of self to giddy relief.  These happen in minutes of each other.

Knowing that all these reactions are all normal should help, but even for me I’m having a real hard time with the cross part.  It might be easier if my daughter were a cross person by nature, but luckily for her, she is about as happy and upbeat as they come.  This cross thing is really alien to her.  And to me!

So what did I do?  I got cross back.  I know I “Should” have been understanding, encouraging her to let out her feelings, helping her to get past this.  But guess what?  She was expressing her “cross” at me.  And I’m really just an emotional mama like any other mama; only I’m supposed to know better.

Of course we did a have “nice” talk with all apologies given and accepted.  And I do think it was from our hearts.

But still there was this lingering in me.

Well, what could I do?  I called my sister to let my anger out.  Then Steve, the physical therapist, called.  And just happened to want to be sure that not only was my daughter doing fine with her workouts and emotionally as well, BUT that I was OK too. He talked with me and told me everything I knew.

I’m the one and only person she will feel close enough to be cross with.  I’m the one and only person she will really cry with.  She’ll be great with her doctor, with her nurses, with her PT, with her coaches, with everyone else.  EXCEPT me.  I’m the one and only person she trusts more than anybody else.  All her emotions are her gift of love to me.  There is no getting around it.  It’s tough.  But its worth being loved that much.

And I’m lucky to be able to love her back just as much.  Yep, it’s tough.  She’s tough as nails.  You don’t’ be come a world champion at anything unless you are. And to be her mom I have to be soft as a feather pillow for her and at the same time the board she needs to hammer her nails into right now.

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I guess the in next few months articles will be interspersed with how we get on with her recovery, as well as what is happening with my other daughters. And some just-life-in-general ideas and thoughts from a mom whose daughters are all athletes.

Mom’s Job When Kid Is Named Captain

November 30, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Posted in moms, Moms of talented teens, peer pressure, Self Esteem, sports | 2 Comments
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She’s the captain of her ice hockey team at ten!  What an honor and accomplishment.  She called all her relatives as soon as she found out.

What about me, her mom?  How do I react to this?  What is my responsibility?  What do I do about her sisters?  None of them were ever captains in any sport.

Of course there’s a bit of history here.  Jilly was invited to play up for the peewee team, not based on skills but more because the team needed a few more players.  I told the coaches of both teams I would decide which team based soley on what I thought was most important for my child.   I would not, under any circumstances, put my daughter on a team just to make it happen.

Of course Jilly was all swaggery when she got the news. She was oh so cool!  She was going to play up.   But the moment I had her alone in the car the first thing I said was, “I alone will make thie decision based on what is best for you.  I’ll listen to your ideas, but you will not make the decision.  I think at ten you’re too young to figure this all out.”

Since we already have a great relationship based on trust and respect she knew I was going to do what was best for her, not what was seem by others as cool or being above others. Cause what they think just doesn’t matter!

It was clear to me that giving Jilly another year as a squirt would give her more time to get basic skills, she loved working with the coaches of squirts, and she could really use a year as being one of the best.  Even if she didn’t have all her sisters with all their accomplishments, it’s so important to have a time when you are the best.  When the others look up to you. When you can help out and be a leader.

So squirts it was.  Until I heard from Jilly that they, the kids, would be picking captains the next week.  Then my head reeled. I’d been through this too many times.  Captains at ten chosen by teammates has had more negative effect than no captains.  My personal opinion is to have captains for each week.  They lead the warm ups for practices and game, shake hands with the refs, lead the pregame cheer, and lead the hand slap at the end of the game.  It’s a learning experience for each kid.

But to be captain for the season- now that’s a true honor and responsibility.  One not to be given hastily or lightly. One that most nine and ten year olds just don’t have the capacity to truly understand.  If there are going to be captains, the coaches need to be very able to choose based on the true value of the player, with complete open minds.

I talked with the coaches.  Explained my personal concern about kids choosing their captains.  And then dropped the bomb. I told the coaches that I couldn’t let Jilly participate if the captains were chosen by the teammates.  They nodded, said, “Hmmm, hadn’t really thought about that.”  Then I never mentioned captains again to the coaches or Jilly.

This past weekend was the third weekend of games.  I could tell the moment I saw the team come out of the locker room that Jilly had been chosen captain.  She had this look of control and determination on her face. She was in charge and going to make it happen!

I was certain when she and another player went over to the refs and shook hands.  And guess what – me who opposed captains- had a SURGE of pride.  That was my little girl who was captain.  And I truly believe she deserved to be chosen captain.

So what is my responsibility?  Isn’t that what I’m supposed to be writing about?  Well my responsibility is to help Jilly understand the honor and responsibility of being chosen captain.  That being captain is partly about being a great player, but more importantly about being a leader. About the team moral and focus.  It’s about good sportsmanship, paying attention to the coaches, guiding the other kids to do their best. When the game is tough and they are loosing it’s about keeping the spirit up and still trying their hardest.

Being captain doesn’t mean to fake energy or excitement.  It doesn’t mean to suck up to the coaches.  It means to have pride, respect, and leadership.  Being a skilled player helps, but it’s not what a captain is all about.  Even Mia Hamm or Kristine Lilly weren’t the captains of the US soccer team.

Chair Lift Attack Brought Me to the New York Marathon 2010

November 12, 2010 at 10:01 am | Posted in attitudes, New York Marathon 2010, Self Esteem, sports | 10 Comments
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(OK I have finally gotten my NY marathon story written. It’s a four part series. I’m interested in your feed back and comments, as I will be using this in a book I am writing. SOOO I am regifting a prize worth $25 I won from Greg S to be raffled off to everyone who comments on the blog. You can get more raffle chances by commenting on each of the four parts- to be posted over the next few days. Happy reading and commenting)

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My story actually began four years ago when I was in Chile with my family for a ski training vacation.  As I was standing alone preparing to get on a quad chair lift, a young man thought he’d join me.  (He thought I was my 22-year-old daughter- quite the compliment at 47!)

Unfortunately, the chair was coming a bit faster than he thought.  It was going to clip him so he gave it shove away from him.  The chair was attached to a bull wheel so as it went around the centrifugal force made the chair go up eight feet in the air. Then the chair crashed into me.  By the way, the chair weighed 1000 pounds!

I was obviously knocked into with tremendous force.  I was unconscious at first. When I came to my 14-year old daughter was there, a relief until I realized my feet and legs did not move!  But after about ten minutes the toes were back in action!  Let me tell you those were some of the LONGEST minutes in my life.

Because of strength and flexibility due to a life of eating healthy foods and being physically active, and especially from doing two hours of yoga each day with my eldest daughter, my spinal cord was not severed, my hip was not crushed.  I was only severely bruised in my muscle and bone.  And of course those heal easily.

Except that one-week after the accident my bruised muscles did not heal.  They atrophied.  They actually disintegrated and disappeared.  I had a dent in my hip about three inches diameter and one inch deep.

None-the-less, I still thought I would heal just fine doing nothing in particular to help the healing process.

I was completely wrong. After a year the ITB band had slid forward about an inch, towards the front of my hip.  This force torqued my body causing displacement in my bones and muscles from my toes to my neck.  I ended up with a pinched nerve in my neck.  Through two years of physical therapy and chiropractic I was able to retrain my body to its natural position.  No surgery- Lots of time and effort.

My therapist knew that I had been a runner in my youth, running a staggering 100 miles a week, and as I had more and more children (4 total) I had given up my running.  And she knew that I really yearned to get back into running.  Being able to run a marathon would mean that I was truly healed.

During these two years of recovery I had been thinking I wanted to do something for the Women’s Sports Foundation.  The foundation epitomizes and represents so much of what I stand for: Equality for women; and athletics as a major source of health, both physically and mentally.  But I just couldn’t figure out just what to do.

In May (2010) my physical therapist said, “I think you are ready to do anything you want.  You’ll have to stretch everyday, possibly for the rest of your life, but I think you can do anything you want. Maybe even run a marathon.”  The very next day I received an invitation to run the New York Marathon for the Women’s Sports Foundation.

This was the perfect match!

So in June I began my 1000-mile journey on foot.  I started huffing and puffing a measly three miles.  I worked up to six but I was VERY slow!  My daughters could ride their bikes up the mountain road I trained on faster than I could run.  But their support being there and saying, “You can do it Mommy.  You are almost at the top.”  was pure music to my ears.

I used every single motivating idea and inspiring quote I gave to my daughters and clients.  And low and behold they really did work!  I was able to get myself going.

I ran, first just trying to get the distance in.  After I had accomplished some long runs, 18-20 miles, I added speed and technique.  I did workouts with core, Pilates, Zumba, arm strength, specific leg strength and flexibility, and yoga.

All the while I had to be sure I was eating the right foods to replenish and build strength.  Luckily I minored in nutrition at college.

I also needed to keep myself mentally going forward.  Some runs were horrible, some were very inconvenient.  Many were fantastic.  If I did not have the mental stamina I would have quit.

It’s not an easy task to train from scratch, to engage and solicit funds, to educate others about the Women’s Sports Foundation and to do everything else that needed to be done in my regular life of being an education and life management coordinator and coach for young female athletes, being a mother of four active daughters (two of whom are pro- and semi-pro freestyle skiers, homeschooling the three that live at home, and all the other things that come along with being CEO and CFO of a home.

I found that joining some online communities really helped. One was specifically set up for runners.  We post our runs and workouts, notes about running, support and motivate each other.  The other is facebok.   With these two and my local friends I had all the connections and support I needed.

So training and living went on.  Summer heat and humidity, new running shoes, and an unexpected two trips made me wonder if I really could get myself trained and ready for the marathon.

But you know I did!  I spent the last two weeks of Sept and all of Oct getting my final training done.  I had some long runs- all in the New Hampshire Mountains that I live in. One stands out in particular.

It was a nice sunny day. I was going for a ten-mile run.  I ran up the mountain road from my home and down to old dirt, logging road going up into the mountains.  This became a grass path, which turned into a muddy trail.  I reached the pass and started down the other side.

It was a stream that I had to jump from stone to stone with plenty of cold splashes along the way.  I was heading to a road about two miles from the pass, planning to hitch hike back to my town from there.  But all of a sudden there was a marsh in front of me.

I had to turn back!  And the weather had changed from sunny and warm to cold and damp and windy.  It was awful!  So I hopped and splashed my way back trying my hardest to not think anything.  I got to the logging road.  Some hikers were catching up to me.  So I forced my feet to pick up, move a bit faster.  I was back to running again, even though I hadn’t realized I’d stopped running.   All the while my twelve-pound dog was happily bouncing along.  When we got back to the road I put her leash on.  And bless her little soul, she tried to pull me home. She is not a regular leash pulling dog.

I was now two miles from home- and I was feeling dejected, exhausted, and ready to go home and cry!  The cry was going to be the best thing about this run. At least I would be able to get it all out of me.

Then my daughters drove the car up to me.  They were coming up the other side of the road.  They made a u-turn offering me food and water.  I just wanted a sweatshirt. The dog got in the car, not tired, just happy to be with happy people.  And the girls drove off toward home.

But they couldn’t leave me like that, even for the last mile left to get home.  They turned around again, made another u-turn by me and drove close to me blaring out the windows “We Are the Champions Of the World.”  Something happened.

I really can’t say what.  All I know is it was sort of like when the Grinch changed.  My heart warmed up.  I remembered who I was running for, My girls, All my extended family girls, and ALL the girls and women that the Women’s Sports Foundation represents.

How could I quit?  So what if I had a crummy run.  I had an obligation to myself and literally thousands of other girls and women to run!  If I quit what would I be saying to my own girls?

So I really picked up my feet and ran.  I focused deep inside.  I cut all the stings that were holding me back.  I looked at that road and nowhere else.  We were approaching our street.  I was on the right side of the road. The girls next to me. The road to the left.  The car began to turn slowly.  I kept going.  I waved my hand for them to come.  On we went.

Twenty yards further was a road to the right that looped around for a short circle back to my home road.  This was hard.  I looked at that road directly in front of me.  I made my feet keep going.  I picked them up, and ran straight on.   The girls put on other songs of inspiration.

Another twenty yards and I made a right turn.  This was back up the mountain road.  My pace picked up.  I was hauling up that road.  The music was blaring.  I got to the top, made the loop, and began the flight down.

And down I went.  My feet barely hit the ground.  I was here with my girls and I was twenty again running.  I was thrilled and amazed.  A sharp left turn to the flats.  Right turn to go down again.  Then up a short steep hill.  Back on the flats.  And a left up the steep hill to home.

I did it.  I ran those last six miles, in under 40 minutes. That was a pace of six-minute miles after a horrible run.  The total run was 26.5 miles.

I also knew I had changed forever.  I was now able to do my own impossible.  I was able to go beyond my own abilities, reach somewhere deep inside to gather strength and energy I’d only dreamed of.  I could do this because I wanted to show my girls and all girls and women that they could do it too.  We can all pass our impossible.  We can all run those last six miles.

And funny thing, after this run my soliciting became easier. My daughters began to make calls, to post about my running, to email their friends and acquaintances, to think there was more to it than just “Mommy running.”

That training run was the Sunday just three weeks before the New York Marathon, the day after going to an all day Bar Mitzvah with hours of dancing.

Monday I was tired, but I knew I needed to stay strong.  I went to my Zumba class anyway.  I kept right on with my training.  I really ramped up my core and arm strength. I stretched and did as much yoga as I could find time for.

These activities were not only for my physical strength, they added mental power too.

But I knew I had to slow down before the race.  And thankfully Halloween was right there, one week before the race.  My ten year old still wanted me to be with her for lots of festivities the whole weekend.  And she had two ice hockey games and one soccer game.  No time for my training.  But I did know now that if I really wanted to get in a work out I could.

That’s the prelude story of my New York Marathon 2010 race.  It was a race in and of itself.  It was a 1000-mile journey on my feet.  The beginning of the journey.  The next 26.2 are the end and the beginning.

Lipgloss Is Still Eating At Me!

May 31, 2008 at 3:29 pm | Posted in children, Families, GEM Parenting Secrets, Mothers, respect, Self Esteem, sports, teenagers | Leave a comment
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Anxiety of buying lip-gloss, but not paying for sports

myspace glitter graphics
Glitter Graphics

When I buy things I have two reactions.  One is anxiety (and you will see the price does not matter.)  The other is that paying for something is just part of how it works.  

When I have anxiety it is because I am thinking about the product, not the process.  When I was at the store yesterday my daughter asked for some lip-gloss.  It was only $1.99, but I had that yuck feeling of buying something. 

Then in the evening the same daughter was talking to me about a training program she is invited to be in.  And let it suffice to say it costs a whole lot more than $1.99.  But I had absolutely no anxiety about that at all.

(OK, when I actually pay the bill I will wonder how I am going to come up with it.)

The difference is that in the first place I was being asked to buy a product and the product was for the purpose of external approval.

myspace glitter graphics
Glitter Graphics

The training program is part of a process.  The process is years of training, being in races, building and building, and all the while being passionate about the sport.

This process brings my daughter to have a strong ego, but more importantly she gains self-respect.  Not every race that she enters will go well.  Not every practice day will be fun and invigorating. 

But by looking at the process rather than simply looking at the end result or product, I feel great about paying for my daughters’ programs.

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Glitter Graphics

But that lip-gloss is still eating at me!

  

 

Creative Crayon Club: Activities to do with your Teen

May 31, 2008 at 8:49 am | Posted in attitudes, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, lying, moms, Mothers, parents, peer pressure, relationships, respect, responsibilities, Self Esteem, spirituality, sports, teenagers, teens, Tweens | 2 Comments
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This is out last Creative Crayon Club dedicated to parenting teenagers for a while. It has been a great deal of fun to put these together for you.  I would really love it if you would comment about your favorite thing to do with your teen.

Here are a few things for you to do that can help reduce lying in your house.

Household Projects

Give your teen a choice of household projects that you two will complete.  Pick one, create a time line for the project, and get to work.  Teens thrive on simple projects that give them the respect and responsibility of an adult.  When you do the project together you can have conversations that impart your values and morals without actually having to set up the conversations. 

Join a Club or Group Together

This can be anything from fly fishing, scuba diving, walking club, art group.  There are millions of things to do.  Find something that both of you want to try, but haven’t.  This put you on an even keel.  You are joining the group as two adults.

Find a Needy Group You Can Volunteer For

You can make a meal once a month for a shelter, find books to give to an under privileged school, better yet read once a month to some group.  Again, the list is endless.  Find some way to be the givers on an equal basis.

There is a thread to all these ideas.  Be active with your teen.  Don’t try to be their friend.  Find things that allow you to be together, without being peers.  As you treat your teen with respect, your teen will have respect for you.  And your teen will see that you are someone whose opinion they value.  When they feel valued they will be less able to lie to you.  It is also important to be sure that you remain the parent- the adult.  When you do these things the bottom line is that you give your teen the opportunity to develop into an adult with self respect and high self esteem.  

What is your favorite thing to do with your teen?  Tell us in the comment area.

Motivational Monday: My kid screwed up in school – What do I do about it?

May 12, 2008 at 12:49 pm | Posted in 1, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Focused Fridays, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, Health, How To, moms, Mothers, Motivational Monday, parents, relationships, Self Esteem, siblings, spirituality, sports, teens, Thoughtful Thursday, Transcendent Tuesday, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom, Welcome | Leave a comment
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Welcome to GEM Parenting.

We are in the middle of Teenager Month.

This week we are going to be talking about how my kid screwed up in school, and what to do about it.  This can be anything from some major issue-failing or getting extremely low grades in school to having been a student who really strived to learn and do well to one who is still getting by, and my even be doing “well” by others’ standards, but you know they are failing internally.

You know you need to do something and understand what is going on, but you are at a loss as to what to do and why in the world is this happening.

Lets talk this Wednesday evening at

GEM Parenting Secrets to get a grip on the situation.  There are many ways of understanding your child.  My motto is, hopefully you know, Every Child is a GEM.  It will be from this approach that I am going to help you see the issues and problems of your child.

And with that in mind we are going to look and see you your love, positive intervention, and the use of parenting with passion, purpose and integrity can and will help your child turn from despondency to one with high self esteem and freedom to be excellent where ever that occurs.  To join this class please use the link below.  And follow the instructions for registration in the yellow box on the top left.  Visit my website at: www.GEMParenting.com 

In this hour-long teleclass I will be discussing: How the six main dilemmas facing parents of teens are also the demons that demoralize teens and preteens – making them screw up in school.

  1. Peer Pressure
  2. Media Influence and pressure
  3. Friends changing
  4. Education tracks
  5. Drugs/Sex/Alcohol/Shoplifting
  6. How to set limitations, guidelines, and still create more freedom

 When your teen screws up in school there are three main responses,

  • Wanting to really let your kid know they have screwed up and making them look at all they have ruined for themselves.
  • Ignoring that anything really happened and assuring yourself as parent that there is no real problem with your teen- It is just others and what is happening around your teen.
  • Deciding to somehow let your teen know that every one screws up. It is what you do with the screw that matters.

If you are in the last category, then this Wednesday evening’s GEM Parenting Secrets is for you. As I said, we will be looking at the mistakes and problems your teen has made from different perspectives, looking at ways to use positive intervention to help your teen develop and mature away from self demoralizing and self demeaning behaviors and toward behaviors that will instill a wonderful sense of well being that is independent of all the demands on teens these days.

Hope you will be free to join us.

Terrific Tuesday 

Come back to gain some wisdom from our expert.  Here at GEM Parenting, we really like to share views and ideas from others. 

Wednesday Wisdom

We call this Wednesday Wisdom because this is the day you get the real GEM Parenting Wisdom.  In the morning you can come check out the article that I have written.  And in the evening you can come join us for Live With Grace- GEM Parenting Secrets.

As you can see we are going on from last week where we talked about Taming the Teenager.  And incidentally, this series is still going on, so to be sure to be part of both check out Thoughtful Thursday.

We are going to look at how the same pressures and influences can have devastating results in school.  The influences are

  1. Peer Pressure
  2. Media Influence and pressure
  3. Friends changing
  4. Education tracks
  5. Drugs/Sex/Alcohol/Shoplifting
  6. How to set limitations, guidelines, and still create more freedom

Again we are expecting a lively discussion – parents of teens can be quite expressive!  If your teen or preteen screwed up in school this is THE opportunity to have your personal questions answered and elaborated upon.  If you are a teen or preteen parent of a screw up you have got to join us.  If you don’t it is not our fault when things screw up AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN.  Find peace and stability for your family.  Join us.

This teleclass will be at 8:30pm eastern/5:30pm pacific.  I want to warn you, this will be filled with content, wisdom and inspiration.  We do have a nominal charge of $6.00 – it just helps us with overhead

 So you don’t need to worry about what to wear or worry about much.  A teleclass is simply a seminar done by phone and you can be on any phone from anywhere.

Thoughtful Thursday

Now if you simply can’t make the live teleseminar, we will have the podcast available for you on Thursday.  And if you are unsure of what a podcast is, it is a recording that you can down load to your computer or mp3 player.  This means you can listen to it at your leisure-while sweating away at the gym, taking a calm walk, driving wherever you go, or curled up in your jammies with a cup of relaxing tea.  And you do not actually have to listen to on Thursday.  This is the day we release it. 

 Feedback Friday

 You have got to come back because I almost always have a few more thoughts I didn’t get in or new thoughts that came to me after I was done, and of course this is the day I have answers to the question you have sent in.  Now is a really good time to send in your question about Your kid screwing up in school. 

And just to let you know, next week I am going to be talking about Prom Problems.  They are happening like wildfire all over right now.  So if you have concerns about your teen and Proms send in those questions as well.

There is no better way for me to help you than for you to send me your questions and concerns.  And that is my number one goal-help you be a happy, relaxed, reliable and responsible parent.  So please take a moment and send me your question.

And of course Saturday is

Creative Crayon Club

Here I am going to provide you with activities and ideas you can do with your teen.  These will not be how to talk about problems and issues, but how to DO things together, create things and play on a new level.  Your teen may have had problems in school so it is your duty to find ways to help your teen be a GEM in another light.  On Saturday we will be sharing things to help you find new facets in your teen GEM.

Enjoy your week!

Motivational Monday: Parenting Teens with Attitudes

May 5, 2008 at 11:03 pm | Posted in 1, children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Family Time, Focused Fridays, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, Health, How To, marriage, Mothers, Motivational Monday, parents, relationships, Self Esteem, siblings, spirituality, sports, teens, Thoughtful Thursday, toddlers, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom, Welcome | 2 Comments
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What a week this is going to be!

I know that anyone with teenagers can and does have the “attitude” issue.  I know from personal as well as professional experience.  I have a teenager right now, and I have a daughter well past being a teenager.  And of course I have worked with many, many teenagers.

So sit tight back and check out what we are going to do this week to help you to get rid of teenage attitude.

I am thrilled because I have been asked to be a guest on Tame the Teenager Series.  It will be replacing my regular GEM Parenting Secrets-Live with Grace-Wed evening program.

Check it out at: http://www.GEMParenting.com

In this hour-long teleseminar I will be discussing:

What are the six main dilemmas facing parents of teens these days?

1 Peer Pressure
2 Media Influence and pressure
3 Friends changing-
4 Education tracks
5 Drugs/Sex/Alcohol/Shoplifting
6 How to set limitations, guidelines, and still create more freedom

And I know if you have a teenager right now you have got to be worried about some or all of these dilemmas.  And if you are coming up to teenage parenting why not get acquainted with the problems before they are in your house.

Remember as a parent of a teen you may not actually like what your child is doing, but your responsibility is to nurture, protect and love your child.  And with these in action as well as mind you will help your teen learn to live with confidence, make appropriate decisions, and have reasonable self expectations.  And you will live the peace of mind that you are on top of things, not somehow lost at sea, waiting till the teen years are over, and hoping to land at a nice beach.

Terrific Tuesday 

Mark Todhunter who is hosting Tame the Teenager will be sharing his expertise about teen issues and solutions.

Wednesday Wisdom

We call this Wednesday Wisdom because this is the day you get the real GEM Parenting Wisdom.  In the morning you can come check out the article that I have written.  And in the evening you can come join us for Live With Grace- GEM Parenting Secrets.

I am really excited about this topic- Tame the Teenager- and thrilled to be a guest expert of Mark Todhunter.  I am going to share with you all about the six main dilemmas facing parents of teens these days.  Most of the answers are just what is concerning you. 

1 Peer Pressure
2 Media Influence and pressure
3 Friends changing-
4 Education tracks
5 Drugs/Sex/Alcohol/Shoplifting
6 How to set limitations, guidelines, and still create more freedom

This will be a lively discussion, with the opportunity to have your personal questions answered and elaborated upon.  If you are a teen or preteen parent you have got to join us.  If you don’t it is not our fault when things screw up and you are so lost you can’t figure how to even be in the same room with your teen. 

This teleseminar will be at 8:00pm eastern/5:00pm pacific.

To register for free and to get call in information for all four classes in May, please type your first name and email address below.

First Name:
 
Email Address:
 
 

And since I am the guest there is no charge for this.  (Even though our normal charge in minimal-it just helps with overhead)

And you can be anywhere with a phone, so you don’t need to worry about what to wear or worry about much.  A teleseminar is simply a seminar done by phone.

Thoughtful Thursday

Now if you simply can’t make the live teleseminar, we will have the podcast available for you on Thursday.  And if you are unsure of what a podcast is, it is a recording that you can down load to your computer or mp3 player.  This means you can listen to it at your leisure-while sweating away at the gym, taking a calm walk, driving wherever you go, or curled up in your jammies with a cup of relaxing tea.

Feedback Friday

You have got to come back because I almost always have a few more thoughts I didn’t get in or new thoughts that came to me after I was done, and of course this is the day I have answers to the question you have sent in.  Now is a really good time to send in your question about Taming the Teenager. 

And just to let you know, next week I am going to be talking about what to do if your kid did not do well in school this year.  So if you have concerns about this send in those questions as well.

There is no better way for me to help you than for you to send me your questions and concerns.  And that is my number one goal-help you be a happy, relaxed, reliable and responsible parent.  So please take a moment and send me your question.

And of course Saturday is…

Creative Crayon Club

Here I am going to provide you with activities and ideas you can do with your teenagers that will spark their imagination, make you look like a totally cool parent, build your new bond, and help you stay the responsible parent that I know you can be.

 

 

Creative Crayon Club: Spring Sports and Children’s Morals

May 2, 2008 at 11:05 pm | Posted in children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, How To, moms, Mothers, parents, Safety, Self Esteem, sports, teens, toddlers, Tweens, Welcome | Leave a comment
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Creative Crayon Club

This week take time to be unorganized with your child’s sport. If your child plays soccer be a little early for a practice and just kick the ball around for fun. Try going for a walk with a soccer ball that you and your child pass.

Don’t worry if you are not good. The point is to have fun.

Other fun slightly organized games for multiple ages and abilities:

Kick the Can

This is my own all time favorite and it is my family’s fave as well!

What you need:

And old coffee can

(Nowadays you should put duct tape around the top edge, but in my day we just kicked the can till it fell apart)

Space with hiding spots

Jail

Players- about 5 at least – 10 is a great number

What you do:

One person is the can kicker

One person is “It”

The others are hiders

It covers eyes.

Can kicker kicks can. Warn kicker to kick it away from It and other children

It counts to twenty (or appropriate number for your group)

Can kicker and other children hide during counting.

It gets can and puts it near jail.

It looks for children.

When It finds someone he/she yells his or her name and races for the can.

The found child races for the can as well.

If It gets to can first found child goes to jail.

If found child gets to can first, he/she kicks can-away from children/jail

and all children in jail go free.

It puts can back and starts again.

If one child is It for too long, then have a drink/snack break, rather than just switching things around.

Enjoy your weekend with the kids!

*Program Alert* Organized Sports and Children’s Morals

April 30, 2008 at 10:54 am | Posted in 1, children, dads, Families, Family Time, GEM Parenting Secrets, Health, moms, parents, relationships, Safety, Self Esteem, siblings, sports, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom, Welcome | Leave a comment
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Just a quick not to let you know that I am having a program on Organized Sports and Children’s Moral.

These days it is quite common for our children to be involved in sports-at least one a season.
And let me tell you, there are wonderful aspects of sports.

But there are also parts of these organized sports that simply cause despair and low self-esteem.

That is the side of spring sports we are going to deal with.

Right now, while you are in the thick of it. I am going to talk about:

  • How sports have developed and changed,
  • What benefits there are to organized sports, and most importantly,
  • What to do when your child is suffering from organized sports.

Join GEM Parenting Teleseminar

 

The program is presented by GEM Parenting Secrets.  It starts at tonight, 4/30/08 at 8:30 p.m. EST / 5:30 p.m. PST. When you join you will receive an action guide and an article along with the opportunity to ask your questions about children sports and moral.

Join GEM Parenting Teleseminar

 

Love to talk with you later today,


PS, I forgot to mention that I will have a special guest joining me.  Hope you can make it!

 

Wisdom Wednesday: Spring Sports and Good Moral

April 30, 2008 at 6:21 am | Posted in 1, children, dads, Families, Family Time, Fun Activities, GEM Parenting Secrets, Health, moms, Mothers, parents, relationships, Safety, Self Esteem, siblings, sports, teens, Tweens, Wednesday Wisdom, Welcome | 2 Comments
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Spring Sports and Moral

Sports are such a major part of our lives these days. Parents sign kids up months in advance. They take them to tryouts at younger and younger ages. The practices are anywhere from twice a week to every afternoon. And the competitions take at least one weekend day, with tournaments taking both days. Why in the world do we have our kids “free” time filled with sports? What is the draw? And the bottom line, is it healthy for our children’s self esteem? If it is not healthy, what do we do?

Human beings are by nature group-oriented. We live in societies. We engage in interactions with others. Human beings, also by nature, relish in being challenged, and part of all the stress we create for ourselves comes from this need of ours. Finally, children love to be active and physical and voila, sports for children seem to fit the bill perfectly.

However, why do we have sports for children when thirty years ago, sports played by children was predominantly part of school or ad-hoc empty field games? Why do we have tryouts for young children and organized sports now?

This change comes from some whole culture changes. In the past (50+ years), most children actually had lots of necessary physical activities. Walking was the main mode of transportation. Children would easily walk four to ten miles a day, just getting around without cars. Life was obviously structured without all the conveniences we have, thus physical activity just existed. There was no need to implant it in our lives.

The other major cultural change is electronic entertainment. Again in the past, children had to create their own entertainment. This was often a challenge. It took mental strength and ability. The most popular kids were not the ones with the gadgets, but the ones who had the best imaginations. You can still find these kids, but our media has taught us to look for gadget owners as being the ones to follow.

Our children now need to be entertained rather than create their own challenges. With these two major changes in our society, a huge hole was left for kids. They do not have enough physical activity and they look to be entertained rather than create and challenge themselves. These two cultural changes and our innate human tendencies to need physical activity and challenges makes children’s sports the perfect answer to accommodate our needs.

Given the perfect situation: parents, coaches, teammates, and child all filling roles with enthusiasm, respect, enough challenge, physical activity, freedom to create and play outside the actual regulated sport, then you will have a wonderful time with sports for your children. But perfection is not always the case and as children get older parts of the picture get skewed. That is when sports can and does diminish moral and self-esteem.

So what are your choices? Pull your kid out? Stick it out? Find another team? Make changes where you are? All of these have merit, except stick it out. To make changes first look to yourself. Ask yourself these questions: How am I contributing to the negative aspects of this sport? Check that you communicate respect, enthusiasm, and appropriate disappointment. Be sure to express yourself as your child’s advocate. Your next place to look is how the coach handles the team. If the coach is constantly belittling the players, having too many drills, treating young children as if they were teenagers, forcing players to feel guilty, then you need to talk with the coach. Rather than tell the coach how to be different, find an article, suggest a speaker for the team/parents/coaches. In other words don’t attack the coach. If you are unable to get any change with the coach find another team. If what is happening to your child is seriously detrimental, then pull your kid out right now.

When the parents as a whole are overly aggressive and demanding perfection from their kids, again get some articles that give new ideas, or get a speaker to come. Try not to challenge or attack these parents. Generally if you do, they will shut down to change. As the parent you have both the responsibility and the privilege to help your child grow into the most illuminating gem. Sports can and does bring out wonderful parts of our children. Use that side of sports to guide you in your path of youth sports.

Grace E. Mauzy, M.A.
Founder of GEM Parenting
http://www.GEMParenting.com
Copyright © 2008 ♥ GEM Parenting ♥ http://www.GEMParenting.com

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