Today is July 16th and we are exactly half-way through summer vacation. At this mid-point I like to stop and assess . . . . Is the summer chore chart still working for us? Have we done enough fun things together? What projects do I still need to accomplish? Am I being a fun mom or a crabby mom? When was the last time the boys showered?
In the middle of my mental assessment I had the chance to pick up and read, The Best-Kept Secrets of Parenting: 18 Principles that Can Change Everything by Brad Wilcox (love everything he writes - I even took a class at BYU from him) and Jerrick Robbins (who happens to be a native of Henderson, Nevada wouldn't you know?).
Disclosure: This book was provided to me by the publisher, but all opinions are 100% my own.
It was so nice to get a refresher on parenting concepts that I already know are important, with some added insights. And this book covers it all . . . up and down the parenting track, such as:
*choosing happiness -- I loved the title of this chapter, "Get Over Being Under-appreciated". Ha! Hmm, so you're saying I shouldn't be offended when the kids gag on the food I made for dinner last night. "If we let our happiness rest on the actions and moods of others, we will always be disappointed. Happiness depends not of what others do for us, but on what we do for others and the inner peace we feel from that service."
*being careful with the web -- I'm so glad that we already do some of the things they recommend like having the computer in a public area. But this is such an important topic that I don't mind being reminded about it often so that I can reassess our family systems, safeguards, rules, and recommit to being a better example by limiting my own screen time.
*journaling -- What?! A chapter on journaling! That is my thing. I'll tell you that I get so much joy and personal satisfaction when I read back over old blog or journal entries. Like this one, this one, and this one. The opportunity to re-live, for a moment, those phases, parenting triumphs, and struggles reminds me that we have learned and grown so much. More so, I love writing because "we can find personal journals to be an ideal environment to 'become' the people we want to become" by verbalizing our thoughts and feelings, possibly venting, and taking a moment to appreciate the everyday stuff. "Thoughts are created in the act of writing."
*self-esteem -- "When we have healthy attitudes about ourselves, it is much easier to overcome problems." I feel like I have been formulating a blog post on this topic in my mind for months (self-esteem, confidence) so I really enjoyed the comments in this chapter.
While The Best-Kept Secrets of Parenting does not share tips on how to get your toddler to nap or how to deal with tantrums . . . . it does share some essential parenting tools that will help to create healthy relationships, foster respect and love, and make family life more enjoyable.
Beyond parenting, I also think the "secrets" in this book are great advice for cultivating a good life in general -- enjoy life through its ups and downs, speak compassionately, be honest, work hard, be kind to yourself, and have perseverance to never give up.
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The publisher, Familius, has kindly offered me a copy of The Best-Kept Secrets of Parenting: 18 Principles that Can Change Everything to giveaway to one of my readers. (Also, be sure to check out their beautiful website with lots of great resources.)
To enter: Use the Rafflecopter widget below. Giveaway ends Sunday, July 20th at midnight PST and I will announce a winner shortly after.
And the winner is . . . . Amy Hall! Congratulations!