Parenting Power of Positive Energy

May 4, 2009 at 6:57 am | Posted in Motivational Monday, parents, Self Esteem | 2 Comments
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Here it is Motivational Monday
all over again.

We have been talking about peace and honor
and now I want to switch just slightly.

You see I am doing a workshop for teens this Wednesday
and the topic is

The Power of Positive Energy

Your attitude and perspective deeply affect
how you present yourself to the world.
A famous quote by Emerson reads:

“Enthusiasm is one of the most
powerful engines of success.

When you do a thing,
do it with all your might.
Put your whole soul into it.
Stamp it with your own personality.
Be active, be energetic,
be enthusiastic and faithful, and
you will accomplish your objective.

Nothing great was ever achieved
without enthusiasm.”

Learn that what you get back in life
has a direct correlation with what you give.
Discover how to develop and
use positive energy in your daily approach to life.

So of course I want to share a bit about how
you, as a parent, can use YOUR
Power of Positive Energy
to ease and calm your parenting.

Each time you hear yourself tell your child what
you don’t want, I want you to add on
what you do want.

Example: “You’re late!  Don’t miss that bus again.”
Add: “I want you to be timely and get on the bus.”

You can even shorten it to
“Be timely.  Get on the bus.”

This is about the most simple way to start the change
of shifting your negative energy to positive energy.

And let me tell, you if you are in a funk of negativity
this “simple” exercise can really undermine your
train of thought.

You are forced to stop that negative motion.
Its just like a train that gets derailed.
All that negativity just crashes.

It has nowhere to go.

When you take this tiny little step
not only will you change your energy from
negative to positive, you
will give your children something to
live up to.  Thus raising their self esteem.

That’s your Motivation for Monday.
And you can actually use this skill
absolutely anywhere.

Since I am a parent coach I urge you to try
at home with your kids first.

Please share your success stories.
It really inspires others when they
see that something really does work.

Now get on with parenting with
Passion, Purpose, and Integrity

Grace

PS:  If you haven’t checked out the
podcasts at GEM Parenting why not do it now?

http://www.GEMParenting.com/storehtm

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Running out for an overnight camping trip

April 15, 2009 at 9:09 am | Posted in 1 | Leave a comment
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Today we are heading out to go camping. It will be just for a night. But the weather is so gorgeous that we just have to do it. The kids are getting things ready. I am writing and doing a few work related things. Then off to nature for the night.

This is not something that will get my children into any school or any particular job. Or will it?

I actually think that by living to our hearts desire, getting the jobs and responsibilities that we all have done, and being true to our values and morals my children will actually be able to live their lives with fulfillment, rather than hoping that what they do will be noticed by some outside authority.

We are living for the moment. Our stress is low. Our overwhelm is miniscule. Our self esteem are intact.

What do you do that brings peace to your life, enhances your children, and is not necessarily acceptable by others?

Life Lessons of Dignity and High Self-Esteem

April 14, 2009 at 8:57 am | Posted in 1 | Leave a comment
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GEM Parenting
Where Every Child is a GEM

Its Terrific Tuesday and no better day than today to tell you about our weekend. How we were able to actually have some Easter and our last ski race.

For the whole story I am actually going to bring you back to last Tuesday!

On Tuesday I was to get my 16 year old from the airport- just one and half hours away LOL- She was to arrive at 7:30pm. This was a bit tight because my dancer finished on Tuesday at 7:00pm. Then as we were going into dance (30 minutes away) my 16 year-old daughter called. She had gotten off the plane at a layover and was instructed to head to another gate. When she got to the gate she was told the plane she had been on was actually the correct plane. And it had left. She was completely calm. And asked what should be done now? She was complimented on her manners and told they would get her to our airport at 11:30 pm.

This meant three hours of middle of the night driving for me. YUCK! But that was all I could do about that. I told the dancer as soon as dance was over we would go straight home and I would take a nap. The traveler called again and said she would be at our airport at 8:30pm. This was actually perfect. We left after dance and arrived just as she had gotten her bags. This was a sure case of Law of Attraction.

Just a quick side note on the 16 year old. She went to Squaw Valley for half pipe nationals on skis. She had a great run, but did not place all that well. She actually did not get a score. Again Law of Attraction. She knew she was good, but had not actually put energy into having a great finish. So although her run was great, the scores just did not actually appear. Rather than mope about the outcome, after the ten minutes of discouragement she began her plan for next year. Then she and my eldest (25 years who lives in LA) spent a week together. They had a fantastic time. And the 16 year old surfed- another dream of hers.

OK back to last week-
Of course the whole way home we talked, shared our stories, and just enjoyed each other’s company. And we were all ready to go to sleep when we got back.

Wednesday morning we packed the car- We had to have all our ski gear, enough entertainment for the 4 hr rides and the possibility of four rainy days, school work, and lots and lots of food. We were to leave at 12 noon. We left at 12:20. That’s on time for us.

I was the passenger. And maybe this should have meant resting and relaxing, but when the driver is 16 you are extra alert. So to keep me calm and the kids entertained I read for three hours. Hoarse voice.

We got to our condo and unpacked. Next morning was sunny and a bit warm for us. Racer was training GS w/ her team. (Just incase you are new to GEM Parenting, this was a championship race of the 30 best qualified Americans and 30 best qualified Canadians aged 11 and 12- The Children’s Can-Am) Friday morning was slalom training. My other girls and I were skiing. But we stopped by to watch the training. WOW! I could hardly believe my eyes. My daughter was skiing terribly. Now I had to make a quick decision. Do I let her just continue to enjoy this trip or do I put a spark in her? How do I light the spark and not have her get too tense? And is this really my place or should I leave it up to the coach?

You guessed right if you guessed I decided with the spark. And what would the best spark be? Total honesty. Now there are two ways of honesty-vinegar or honey. I chose honey. I told her that if she was capable of skiing very differently, she had skied very differently two years before, and it was time to go back to that style. She had developed a certain fear of hitting the slalom gates. She did not need to hit the gates. She needed to find her own style and own line.

I wanted her to know that if she were to ski on Sunday the way she trained she would come in the place that no skier wants to be in- by at least three seconds, (a huge difference in ski racing.) If she were going to lose she would at least want to do it with dignity. She took one more run. And improved a tiny bit. She could have dignity at this rate.

Next day was race day- Giant Slalom- My daughter was ready. She put in a great effort and came away with a 37th. Not bad for being the last to qualify from US. But she said to me when she came through the finish. “ I could have done better. I am not even out of breath. I held myself back and I was tight and nervous. Tomorrow I need my sister to ski with me and help me relax.” All in one breath- not knowing how she did compared to anyone else, and before anyone could tell her what she needed to do.

For the afternoon and evening we went to our friend’s condo- 3 families from another mountain in NH. We had a fabulous egg hunt, a delicious Easter dinner, and great time being together. Easter with friends who are almost family.

Sunday-Race day again. Two girls going- one to race with dignity, and the other preparing her with fun and humor and stratgeies. I got them up and to the mountain. They headed off with coaches and other teammates to slip the course.

(The rest of us had to pack out of the condo, but not one thing could be done about that while the racer was there. We were done in 35 minutes)

So we got to the race hill just as the first racers were coming down. Now I can tell you I felt nervous. I wanted so badly for my daughter to do her best, put it all together, and feel great when she came through the finish line. And that is a very tall order!

The first girls had too much speed. They crashed, hiked and were disappointed. Then came some who got the right speed and line. Things were exciting. My daughter was bib 52. Near the end. I was getting a pit in my stomach. Then we were only ten away. My eight year old and I sent her our energy to go fast, relax, and have good line. We use Reiki to do this.

Fifty came through the finish. Fifty-one was on course and fifty-two was out of the gate- my daughter. All you can do is stand there and watch. Send your energy. And hope all goes well. And know that you may need to help uplift your kid’s spirits or you might, if everything goes just right and luck is on your side, have a great feeling of satisfaction. Yes, I know it is the kid who does al the action, but as mom/dad/grandparent you are part of the energy and emotion. You cannot separate yourself so don’t try. Just keep a check on it and don’t over power your kid.

She came in fast. Did everything she could do. And pushed herself to her absolute limit. She had a fantastic finish. No she did not win or even come in the top ten, but she was twenty-second! Now from where she was two days before, this was better than any of us hoped for.

She made a decision, put all she knew into action, and skied without a conscious thought. It was so wonderful to see. She knew she had done a great run. Lots of cheers from other US kids and parents.

But we had to stay in the moment. She still had another run. And who knew what would happen then. Lunch with the subtle tension of more to come, yet the satisfaction of having done one’s best. As a parent it’s a real tight rope. Keeping things just calm enough, and keeping just enough adrenalin for the second run.

Off went the racers (and the one sister) with the coaches to prepare (slip the course) for the second run. Only this time my daughter was going ninth. The top thirty flip time order. It’s a BIG deal to make the flip.

So we had much less time to wait and wonder. We all did about the same as last time- Sent energy, sister with her to keep her just focused enough, but relaxed and having fun. (This sister has been in many international competitions at this point so she really knows what to do and think)

And the tension went up by notches as her time to go came closer. Was she going to be calm? Would she lose it? Would she decide, “Well, I did great last time so I can sit back?”

She was out the gate and we knew. She was putting it down again. She was on her edges, (both of her skis and her abilities). She was breathless at the finish. She had done two great runs. She was elated. I was elated. Her family was elated. Her coaches were thrilled and proud. And her friends and their parents were so happy for her.

Her finish? Twenty-second overall. And this in the race that she could have been last by seconds had she not decided to put it all together.

As a parent there was so much in this weekend for my daughter. Yes, it was fantastic she made it to the Can-Am. It truly was a small elite group of racers. And what she was able to bring together for herself was worth every moment of getting there. She was able to go to her limit. She accepted her challenge- how to get around the slalom gates without hitting them yet being close and fast. She was able to accept her tension and use it to boost her abilities. These two life lessons alone will give her that something we all want in uncomfortable situations. She chose to do her best in every possible way. The outcome was dignity and high self-esteem. Where she placed was the icing on the cake. It really did not matter. (But it was fun to knock of 30 places. I am the first to let you know.)

If you read this far, congratulations. You can see that being a parent has lots of ins and outs, nooks and crannies. You have to be ready in all situations to bring honor and dignity to your children. They need to be supported to do their best, in the way that keeps their self esteem intact. No small order chef can do it.

I would love to hear about times that your children were able to overcome obstacles and how you helped them with this. What life lessons were learned- by you or them!

Motivational Monday: Too Much Stuff and Not Enough Responsibility

April 21, 2008 at 12:03 am | Posted in 1, children, dads, Families, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, siblings, toddlers, Tweens | Leave a comment
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It is a pleasure to have you join GEM Parenting For Motivational Monday

Ever wonder why your children can’t be responsible?  You find that no matter what you do they just seem to ignore responsibility?  Dr. Marilyn Heins has an idea about this, and I totally agree with her.  She thinks we have too much stuff and too much stuff is bringing your children away from the ability to be responsible.  Try for a short period of time (like an hour or afternoon) to be with your child and reduce the stuff interference.  Can’t figure out how to do it?

Join GEM Parenting Secrets this week to talk with Dr. Heins and discover her simple yet specific ideas of how and why too much stuff stops your child from being responsible

                                                

Tickle Me Tuesday

Dr. Heins has sent an article that we will share with you.  You can even download it an read at your leisure.

Wisdom Wednesday

I have to say, I am passionate about our society having too much stuff, especially our children.  I see we are bombarded with the media to buy, buy , buy.  We are taught to never be satisfied and the only way to have any form of satisfaction is to buy something else.  This mentality only creates and reinforces other dependent-esteem, which automatically reduces self-esteem.  I will have my article to share with you on this topic.  Get ready because I have some very strong opinions about this!

GEM PARENTING SECRETS PRESENTS:

TOO MUCH STUFF and NOT ENOUGH RESPONSIBILITY

GEM Parenting Secrets Teleseminar

With Guest Speaker
Dr. Marilyn Heins

She is the founder of www.parentkidsright.com
and author of ParenTips for Effective, Enjoyable Parenting

Set Your Calendar for this
Live Teleseminar

Date: Wednesday, April 23, 2008
Time: 4:00 p.m. Eastern/1:00 p.m. Pacific

Dr. Marilyn Heins and I will discuss why and how too much stuff reduces your child’s ability to be responsible. What you can do to bring responsibility to your children without having to throw away everything you just spent thousands of dollars to acquire.

For only $6.00 you can join this teleseminar and find out the best ways to increase responsibility in your children, help them feel satisfied, and desire to be responsible. By having your children become responsible, you give both you and your children the courage and peace that comes with doing a job well done. And best of all, it will give you and your family the opportunity to develop high self-esteem and bring out the beautiful Gem that is within each member of your family.

Join GEM Parenting Teleseminar

 

 

As a registered participant you will have the opportunity to ask your questions directly to Dr. Heins or send them in advance of the telesminar.  You will benefit you family’s self-esteem, increase responsibility, and decrease the stress involved with having kids who are irresponsible.

By the way, GEM Parenting Secrets will resume at – 8:30 pm Eastern next week.

 

               

Thoughtful Thursday

GEM Parenting Secrets with Dr. Marilyn Heins is going to be a fantastic discussion!  Even if you miss the live teleseminar, you can get the podcast on Thursday.  Then, even for those who have attended, you can down load the podcast to your favorite mp3 player and replay what you really need to understand.

Dr. Heins knows her stuff.

Sneak preview for next week…

Spring Sports-Too much pressure?  Not enough fun?  Surprise guest expert!

Send in your questions today so we can be sure to address your personal concerns.  Send them to me directly at grace@gemparenting.com

Creative Crayon Club

Saturday we have fun activities so you and your family can kick back and relax.  These activities will bring peace and harmony to your home and help increase your family’s self-esteem.

                                               

We will also share products and programs that coincide with TOO MUCH STUFF and NOT ENOUGH RESPONSIBILITY.

Hope you have a great week and we at GEM Parenting can assist you in your journey to parent with passion, purpose, and integrity.  Remember we believe at GEM Parenting, every child is a GEM.

 

Helping Children with New Years Resolutions

January 5, 2008 at 9:06 am | Posted in children, dads, Families, Holidays, moms, Mothers, parents, relationships, Self Esteem, siblings, Tweens | Leave a comment
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Are you already suffering from New Years Desolution?

It seems that no matter what we try to do about a New Year’s Resolution it seems to slide into a desolution.  Somehow we just can’t get a grip on how to go forward with our great ideas.  Before you totally give up in despair, lets try a few ideas out and see how you can really change your life.  

  • First thing you need to do is be sure you have actually written your resolutions down. If you have not written anything down then follow these instructions on how to write resolutions that will work.  And if you have written something down you will need to get more paper so you can add to what you have already done.
  • When we write resolutions we write what we want to stop doing, have more of, and/or change.  But we rarely write down how we are going to have these life altering changes take place.  And that is where the downfall happens.

So what I want you to do is take your paper and fold it in half.  On the left side you write your resolution as you normally would.  “I am going to loose ten pounds.  I am going to stop yelling at my children.”  Then on the right side you right down what you will do to make the changes happen.  “I will not have seconds and I will walk twenty minutes three times a week.  I will join GEMParenting Secrets to learn tactics to stop yelling at my kids.”

This sets in motion the ability to change.  Without the way to change you will stay forever in that limbo land of wishing rather than being.

  • A second way to help your resolution become a part of your life is to treat it as a new habit.  And the best way to add a new habit is to replace an old with the new.  If your resolution is to stop yelling at your kids, then you need to decide what you will do instead as above.  Then in addition to writing it down you actually set a time and place that you will make the change.  For instance if you know you yell at your kids every night to go to bed, then set up a reward chart for yourself.  If you do not yell then you get a sticker.  If you get five stickers then the kids can stay up an extra thirty minutes.  You now have a change of the pattern.  You are still in charge, but the kids actually get the reward if you don’t yell.

When you take these kinds of changes and set them into motion in your life you will begin to have real changes that last more than a few days.  You will change your thoughts, your behaviors, and how you and your children interact with each other.

FREE 8 PODCAST SERIES: “7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats!”  In this FREE Audio Parenting Series, you’ll learn the tested methods and strategies that produce the behavior your heart desires from your children.


 

Family New Years Resolutions

January 4, 2008 at 8:53 am | Posted in children, dads, Families, Holidays, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, siblings, toddlers, Tweens | Leave a comment
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When you think about New Years there is always that thing called Resolutions.  And it now considered a very bad thing to set up these resolutions.   The reason is because we seem to be unable to accomplish them and then we feel worse than we did before we even thought of the resolution.  I have to say I disagree. 

The thing is that we are making resolutions that are geared for external reinforcement rather than for internal gratification.  Things that others can identify and notice do not have a strong internal power.  As a parent why not start your children understanding resolutions to be ways of expressing gratitude.  This year on New Year’s Eve or New Years Day set aside time to have a special resolution making session. 

  • Have your whole family think about what they are most grateful for.  Talk about these ideas.  There is no idea that is too small, immature, or silly: especially if this is everyone’s first time doing grateful resolutions.  After you have been talking for a while then have everyone write down at least one thing that they want to spend some special time each day being grateful for. 
  • Then hang these up in some prominent places.  And whenever you and your children have a moment to be grateful then do a dance, say a little phrase.  As you do this your children will have a gift of understanding that what is happening on the inside is more important than what happens that is noticed by others.

You do not need to have a resolution to change to become different.  You will be different if you use your resolution to be grateful.  And your children will learn a life of inner strength.  Peer pressure will be a nonentity. 

FREE 8 PODCAST SERIES: “7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats!”  In this FREE Audio Parenting Series, you’ll learn the tested methods and strategies that produce the behavior your heart desires from your children.


 

Focus Friday: Vacation Activities Q&A

December 28, 2007 at 12:46 pm | Posted in children, dads, Families, Focused Fridays, Fun Activities, Holidays, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, spirituality, toddlers, travel, Tweens | Leave a comment
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Welcome to our after Christmas and before New Years edition of Focus Friday.

Reader Question:

I understand the idea of trying to make a home vacation be special. But is this really possible?

Answer: 

Absolutely.  As long as you don’t mind spending some time to make it special.  And you can have the time setting up be part of the process of having a vacation.  The most important part of the home vacation is doing things with your children. But don’t overload this.  You and your children will want to have some time apart.  And this will be good for the rejuvenating part of the vacation.

One thing to remember is that it is not the activity itself that will be special it is the attitude you as the parent bring to the activity which will make it special. 

*************************************************

Question:

I love your ideas of the home vacation, only I really think I have house full of doubters and that thye will sabotage anything I try to set up.  Is there anyway to get them involved and past the “Poor me, I have to stay home” stuff?

Answer: 

What you do is have your attitude of comfort and pleasure of being at home.  Get things set up so that you can pull out the activities each day.  Pretend you are the counselor at a fun camp.  Be enthusiastic. 

AND instead of assuming they will sabotage your fun ideas you need ot change your own attitude.  Your family will follow what ever attitude you send out to them to do.  You are the parent and the leader.  Know this and set the stage for enjoying the home vacation

You need to do this with ease.  You cannot force yourself, spouse, or kids into ease if you are tense.  Roll with the process.  Relax and know you will have a fun and special home vacation.

***************************************************************

Question:

I read about the going away vacation and would like to better understand about the special to do stuff.  How can I keep my son from getting into it all at once? 

Answer: 

To keep children from getting into everything all at once put each activity in a separate baggie and label.  You can use labels for each day, or if you are wanting this to be for the actual travel portion of the trip them label with hours into the trip.  Either by first hour, scond hour, and so forth.  Or by time of day.   If your child is totally interested in the activity then give them an extra ten minutes.  But after that have them put that activity away and start the next thing.  This keeps them having fresh things to do.  If your child is bored with the activity then you can interrupt with a “New Flash.”  And start some very trivial news of what is happening on the trip.  Interview our correspondent in the other side of the world- well maybe just the back seat of the car or right next to me in the plane.  Play this mindless but silly game for a while.  Add songs or have one activity that is the fill in.  For instance, this activity can be a journal of the trip.  It can have coloring and/or writing.  But don’t pull out the next item till the time comes.  This gives your child the pleasure of anticipation.  It means that they will realize that they it is better to enjoy the activity that is there than rush through everything and have nothing at the end.

Hope your holiday season is as wonderful and stress free as possible!

Check out the Activities for Family and Children podcast full of unique ways to have family fun with your children during the Christmas season.

FREE 8 PODCAST SERIES: “7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats!”  In this FREE Audio Parenting Series, you’ll learn the tested methods and strategies that produce the behavior your heart desires from your children.


 

Christmas Activities for Children and Families

December 25, 2007 at 10:34 am | Posted in children, dads, Families, Fun Activities, Holidays, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, siblings, toddlers, Tweens | Leave a comment
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Merry Christmas.  Welcome to the Special Christmas edition of GEM Parenting!

Here are a few activities to try today.   Or if you are checking this out after Christmas you can still enjoy them.

Wrapping Paper Ornaments

What you need:

Wrapping paper- it is fine from presents if it is not too wrinkled.
Scissors
Tacky glue
String or pipe cleaners

What you do:

Cut the wrapping paper into circles that are about 3 inches in diameter
Cut a slit to the center point of each circle
Make a cone shape with the circle-
WITH THE colored side on the in side of the circle
Glue

Repeat till you have about ten cones

Now glue the cones together with points in the middle

Add the string or pipe cleaner so you can hang the ornament
******************************************************
Take the time to sit with each of your children
Ask them about their presents. 
What do you like about this one?
How will you use this?
Why do you think you got this?

What I don’t want you to do is
Ask your children what is their favorite. Have your children say what is their favorite.
Or order them in any way.

Allow your children to enjoy each gift in its own unique way.
When you do this, your children can learn that every gift is truly a gift.

And there is the old saying, “It’s the thought that counts.”
Along this line, if you have your children order their gifts they loose perspective of gracious receiving.

Christmas Activities are here!  Check out the Christmas Activities for Family and Children podcast full of unique ways to have family fun with your children during the Christmas season.

FREE 8 PODCAST SERIES: “7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats!”  In this FREE Audio Parenting Series, you’ll learn the tested methods and strategies that produce the behavior your heart desires from your children.


 

Motivational Monday: Christmas Eve Activites

December 24, 2007 at 5:22 pm | Posted in children, dads, Families, Fun Activities, Holidays, moms, Mothers, Motivational Monday, parents, Self Esteem, toddlers, Tweens | Leave a comment
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Welcome to a Special Monday Motivation…Christmas Eve edition!

  • Create your own Christmas pageant:
    use props, dolls, neighbors, grown ups,
    a book to read from or make it up as you go.

Take as long as you have time to do this. 
And remember this story is both about Jesus and the love that each and every one of us have for our children and life itself.

  • A fun craft is:
    Taking the tin cans from your recycling.
    Clean them out and make them be safe on the edges.

Use bits and pieces of wrapping paper to cover the outside of these.

They can be used as last minute gifts for all the adults and children around. 
Or you can fill the bottom with sand, dirt, or pebbles and put candles in them.

Of course be careful about the paper and the flames!

Ready for the ulimate Christmas Eve Activity fun?  Check out Christmas Eve Fun podcast full of unique ways to have family fun with your children during the Christmas season.

FREE 8 PODCAST SERIES: “7 Deadly Mistakes Parents Make That Create Spoiled Brats!”  In this FREE Audio Parenting Series, you’ll learn the tested methods and strategies that produce the behavior your heart desires from your children.

Creative Crayon Club: Vacation Activities for Families

December 22, 2007 at 12:13 am | Posted in children, Creative Crayon Club, dads, Families, Fun Activities, Holidays, moms, Mothers, parents, Self Esteem, siblings, toddlers, travel, Tweens | Leave a comment
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Here are enough things to help you have a really fun vacation at home.  Nothing is expensive!!

It is important to remember that expensive vacations do not emphasize lots of electronics.  And some down right don’t have time for them.  So when you are doing your home vacation remember to stop electronic

The other important thing to remember is that expensive vacations are not about the product, but the experience.  So when you do some of these activities (and others that you think of yourself), do the activity for the fun of doing it.  The product, the result, does not matter. 

Food Related

Jell-O fish tank

What you need:

  • Jell-O mix
  • Gummy fish and other candies that can be used in fish tanks
  • Clear plastic cups that can hold boiling water

What you do:

  • Make Jell-O mix.
  • Put it in cups
  • Let cool
  • Add gummy fish and candies to look like aquarium

Even after Christmas, cookies or brownies are always fun to make Home made pizza:

What you need:

  • Pizza dough form the freezer section
  • Shredded Mozzarella cheese
  • Other yummy toppings

Fun Ideas for Children: 

  • Have a restaurant
  • Let your children wear an apron
  • Set the table specially
  • Make a menu
  • Seat you
  • Take orders
  • Serve the food
  • Clear the table
  • Usually the restaurant stops being fun here,
  • But if you can, let them do the dishes.

Make a Lasagna: 
It takes about an hour or two.  The result is delicious and can take a good bit of vacation time to make.  The thing about lasagna is not just how good it tastes, but that you actually have a great time making it. So remember that it is as much about the process as the product.

  • Lasagna noodles
  • Ground beef
  • Pint ricotta cheese
  • Pint shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Cup Parmesan cheese
  • Three eggs
  • Chopped fresh parsley
  • Salt and pepper taste
  • Two jars tomato sauce
  • Olive oil

Boil water to cook lasagna
Lay flat on waxed paper, or tin foil to keep separated.

While noodles are cooking,
Brown the meat in olive oil.
Put in a bowl

In large bowl mix
Cheeses, eggs, and parsley

In lasagna pan spread thin layer of sauce
Place layer of noodles
Spread cheese mixture over that
Sprinkle ground beef
Spoon sauce

Repeat till there is nothing left.

Try to have noodles with sauce for the top layer

If things don’t get put in the right order it won’t matter
It tastes good anyway.

Cover with tin foil
Bake at 350 for 40 minutes
You can take off the tin foil for the last five minutes and sprinkle more parmesan cheese on top if you like.
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Crafts

Painted T-shirts/Boxers

  • What you need:
  • T-Shirt or boxers
  • Fabric pens
  • Puffy fabric pens
  • Fabric glue
  • Sequins
  • Cardboard

What you do:

Cut the cardboard to fit inside the T-shirt or boxers
This keeps the paint and glue form going through to the other side.
Paint and color one side of the clothing.
Add sequins with glue.

Let dry completely-hairdryer can speed up drying

Do the backside.
Wear and enjoy
Wash-usually in machine
Dry- Hang dry

Paper Snowflake

What you need:

  • Pieces of paper
  • Scissors
  • Tape

What you do for Snow Flakes:

  • Cut paper to be square or round
  • Fold the paper in half
  • Three times so you have a triangle.
  • Cut small pieces out.
  • Unfold to see beautiful snowflakes all different from each other.

This is traditionally done in white, but you can use different colored paper .  Or scribble on the white paper before cutting out

Paper Christmas-Tree Chain:  Paper Doll Chain

What you need:

  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Pencil

What you do:

  • Fold paper in accordion fashion
  • Draw a tree or child with some part
  • On each side attached.

With trees use bottom branches
With girls use skirt bottoms and hands
With boys use hands and toes

Cut out.
Color faces or ornaments  
Christmas Collage Village

What you need:

  • Old wrapping paper
  • Christmas Cards
  • Anything that is small and is Christmassy
  • Glue
  • Tape
  • Boxes from presents
  • Markers, Crayons, Paint
  • Optional book to get in the mood -Henry and Mudge and the Long Weekend by Stevenson

Use all your stuff to make a Christmas Village.  Do not hurry.  Take a day or so to set it up.  Leave it set up for a few days.  Have as much fun making it as playing in it.  And add to as you go along.  You can make this for dolls or action figures or for yourselves to play in.

Art work Weaving

What you need:

  • One piece of poster board per child
  • Two pieces of firm white paper OR- two pieces of old artwork that can be cut up
  • Crayons or makers
  • Masking tape
  • Scissors Ruler

What you do:

  • Make designs or pictures on the two pieces of firm paper.  Be sure to explain that these will be cut up. 
  • Label them piece A and Piece B or choose two pieces of artwork, piece A and piece B, which you are going to cut. They should be the same size, and they should be on paper and in paint, marker, or crayon (pencil could smear).

Measure equal increments along the length (the top) of piece A, and draw lines forming strips on the back of the piece. Number each piece in numerical order on the back.

Measure equal increments along the width (the side) of piece B, and draw lines forming strips on the back of the piece. Letter each piece in alphabetical order on the back.

Cut along the lines of pieces A and B — forming two sets of strips.

Using masking tape, tape the ends of the strips of piece A onto a piece of poster board — reassembling the artwork. Use the numbers to help keep the strips in order.

Carefully weave the strips from piece B into piece A — tightly. Use the letters to help keep the strips in order.
When finished you can either laminate the finished piece or wash over the painting with some watered down white glue.
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Outdoors


This is a list of activities that you can use as a starting point.  Be creative and remember one of the places kids love to be no matter what the weather is outdoors

Make a snow fort/house

When playing in the snow bring out some old scarves, or other used clothing items.  Your kids can find great ways to embellish the house.
Use drops of food coloring to have colored snow as well.

Add neighbors

Set up a store outside

This is great if you are in a warmer climate-
Collect some old cartons and cans-carefully taped with duct tape along the top to avoid any cuts.  Let your children figure out how to create the shelves, the check out, the freezer.  Again, there is the possibility of adding dress ups, dolls and neighbors to this game 

Go sledding

Take a nature walk-on your walk, try to find the alphabet. 
Look for birds and count how many birds you see
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Silly fun

  1. Use face paints
  2. Do finger painting
  3. Twister
  4. Dance time
  5. Play tickle monster

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