For the past few weeks my son has been getting bullied at school.
This has been a difficult thing for him to endure, and it has been equally hard for me as his mom to watch him have to struggle with this every day.
But as I have been watching him try to work his way through this difficult time, I have been reminded of some wise advice that my own mom gave me when I had my first child.
She told me that what a child needs more than anything in this life is a safe place to land at the end of the day where they KNOW they are loved and protected. Where they are free to express their feelings in a place where those feelings will be respected and honored.
So each night I have made a extra effort to let him know how special he is and how proud I am of the way he has been handling this situation.
So today, I wanted to talk a bit about making HOME a safe and nurturing HOME-BASE for our families.
What do you think of when you hear the phrase, HOME BASE?
Whether it’s capture the flag,
or just regular ol’ tag,
Every kid knows that when they are being chased or simply need a break from danger…
They head to HOME BASE.
If they are touching the tree or standing on the towel that represents home base, no one can attack them.
It’s their chance to shout encouraging or strategic advice to their teammates.
It’s their opportunity to catch their breath for a few moments before diving back into the game.
For kids, home base represents safety.
Can the same be said of your home?
When your kids long for some encouragement, do they head home?
When your kids need to feel protected, do they veer toward your driveway?
Is home a place where they will further experience emotional attacks and feel insecure?
These are probably the most important questions any parent can and should ask themselves.
So what are some ways that you can create a strong feeling of safety and security in your home?
Here are a few of the ways that I have created a HEAVEN on EARTH for my kids inside our home.
#1: Regular family dinners are a big part of the magical formula that has brought harmony and happiness to our home.
According to research kids who have dinner with their families seem to make better choices and avoid disorders and high-risk behaviors, including depression, delinquency, and drug and alcohol use.
Family dinner conversations are a bright light in my relationships with my children.
I enjoy how when one child is going through a difficult time, the other three assist me in wrapping their love around their sibling during the dinner time conversations.
The older ones will offer advice and suggestions, while the younger ones generally seem to just express their love and support.
It has been during the dinner conversations that the sense of TEAMWORK has been cemented in our family.
#2: Another really important way to make your home a safe place is to simply Be there.
Parents committed to building enduring faith through their homes often start with a simple, basic step.
They regularly choose to be at home with their kids.
As a single mom, I had to try really hard to make sure that I made time for each one of my kids individually.
I wanted them to know that of all my responsibilities in life, they were the most important one I had.
So making time for them became a HUGE priority for me, and the results have been amazing.
#3: Another big tip is one that at times has been a HUGE challenge for me as a single parent, but the dividends were well worth the cost.
And that tip is: Stock the fridge.
Many times this has literally been the glue that has made our home a social hub for my kids and their friends.
I found that “If I kept my fridge and cupboard stocked, the kids friends come over a lot.
It gets pricey, but it’s worth it because this way, I know who their friends are and how they behave.
#4: Another way to create a sanctuary for your kids is to make sure that your home is a reflection of your faith and your values.
As followers of Jesus, I feel that my house should reflect my faith.
I have tried to have a memento of my faith in every room in my house that reminds my family, as well as others visiting, of our commitment to Christ.
#5: Another really fun way to bring your family closer and to create memories that will carry them through their lifetimes is to have a “Game Night” where you sit at the table and eat snacks and play one game together.
This has been HUGE in integrating Jeff into our family routine and making him feel that he is an important part of our TEAM.
So this weekend, as you are home with your families try out a few of these ideas and watch how the atmosphere in your home softens and becomes more loving.
I love when we have guests and they say that they don’t want to leave because our home has such a good feeling about it. They say they just want to sit and bask in the welcoming and loving atmosphere that they can literally feel when they are in my home.
For me that is the ultimate compliment!
As entrepreneurs, we are often guilty of bringing about our own noise and self-made pressures.
I actually made all of these projects in December but have just not gotten around to posting pictures of them yet.
I figured that I better get them up on my website.
I appreciate the feedback that you always give me when I post the projects that I have made.
This time I am asking for a different kind of feedback however…
I have had a few requests for painting instructions and patterns.
This is where I would really appreciate some feed back…
If I were to feature a project each month, would you be interested in receiving the pattern and painting instructions?
What would you be willing to pay to have them delivered to your mail box each month?
Would you prefer that they arrive in a digital format, or would you prefer to have them mailed to your physical address?
And would you like patterns for my murals and furniture pieces as well?
Thank you for taking the time to respond to these questions. It will help me know how to move forward in the future.
So, as promised….
Here are the projects that I made to give as gifts this year for Christmas 2015.
I made 5 of these door hangers to give to my friends this year.
I made them out of 3/4″ MDF. I cut them out, then hand painted the details on each one.
Next, I added glitter to the snowman’s face for that little extra sparkle that I love.
The final step was to glue on the flower and add some beads to the brim of his hat.
The blocks are a fun little neighbor gift that I made using 6″ x 2″ scraps of wood and scrap book paper.
I MODGE PODGED the paper to the blocks.
Then added a burlap ribbon and then I tied the spoon onto the burlap ribbon with a smaller contrasting ribbon.
The last thing I did was I glued on a clip that would hold the recipe card.
These were a big hit!
I made this one for a co-worker. Her son is on a mission and I wanted to make her something really special to commemorate this once in a lifetime event.
I made these to pass out around my neighborhood. They are just scraps of wood that I have in my shop and I painted them fun colors then painted on the letters and the face and added a snowflake and glitter to the snowman. I made the carrot nose out of foam core board.
These were a simple project that was a really big hit too.
I had so much fun making Christmas projects this year. It is always so much fun for me to find and then make the projects each year.
So Once again I want to thank you for taking the time to respond to my questions.
I want to continue to grow my business and the thought of creating patterns and instructions was not something I had ever considered but thanks to my readers, I am now investigating that possibility.
This quote went so perfectly with the two previous blogs that I posted today, that I had to share this with you.
I promise that when you finally STOP trying to DISCOVER the secret to happiness, and start CREATING happiness for yourself, your life will take a dramatic turn for the better.
I am living proof of this FACT.
Gratitude, a generous spirit and goals to work toward are the foundation of lifelong happiness. It’s all within reach.
What if I promised you that I could make you stand out in a crowd?
Or that I could give you a secret formula that would GUARANTEE your success in Love and relationships?
How much would you be willing to pay for that kind of insider information?
Well I have great news….
Today I am going to give you that kind of powerful information for
It won’t cost you a penny.
I have personally researched each and every insight in the trenches of my very own life.
Every insight I will be sharing with you today has the power to literally transform your life…
you are willing to allow the TRUTH of my words to sink in,
make the necessary adjustments to your thinking that will allow you to integrate these insights into your daily life.
So here are the POWERFUL insights
to make you HAPPIER…
#1: Love is a choice, Attraction ISN’T
What do I mean by that?
It’s simple really…We really don’t have any more control over who you fall for than you do over gravity.
We all suffer from a condition that many refer to as “INSTANT ATTRACTION”,
When the chemical craziness of that first attraction wears off (after days or months or years),
That is when you will finally start to wake up every day, look at the person in your bed and to be in love with them.
You can ALSO choose to love someone too.
Don’t be a love victim.
I wasted too many years of my life desperately trying to keep a relationship together that I should have just walked away from.
Too many folks stay with men and women who are awful for them because they “love” them or because they’re afraid of “failing”.
You have to love yourself FIRST and sometimes that means walking away.
You get this one life to be happy.
Don’t waste it.
#2: “Soulmates” aren’t found, They Are MADE.
There’s no “The One,” there’s dozens… hundreds of men or women out there who would be perfect for you.
Finding “the one” means finding someone wonderful and working together to create something extraordinary.
I honestly believe that my oldest child is my greatest soul mate.
Together we have helped each other grow and develop life skills that alone we would never have understood.
So, obviously I also don’t believe that a SOUL MATE has to be a romantic partner.
I believe that a soul mate is a person who helps you become the very best version of yourself.
#3: Nobody can make you a victim but you.
I work at an elementary school, so I gets lot’s of kids every day telling me how someone is making them crazy.
But nobody can “make” you a victim, any more than they can “make” you happy.
So I always take the child aside and explain to them that another persons behavior does NOT have the power to render them helpless to their feelings.
I offer them a few more choices for feelings that the other person’s behavior might cause them besides “CRAZY”,
and once I do that,
the light bulb goes off and they suddenly realize that they can actually CHOOSE how they react to someone else’s bad behavior.
# 4: 99.99999% of what people say and do has nothing to do with you.
This has probably been the most difficult insight for me to research for you.
My second husband was a cheater. He had three affairs during our marriage and it took years for me to accept the simple fact that…
Even something as awful as cheating often has nothing to do with me.
People do what they do.
You react how you react.
Your heart is yours and you’re the only one who can make it feel anything.
#5: Never apologize for your emotions, but don’t assume that just because you feel something that makes it true and right.
Humans are a lot like crazy animals that evolved from beasts.
Just because you feel something doesn’t mean you have to act on it.
Let it hum through your veins.
Passion is infectious.
Anger is useful.
Pain is meant to teach.
Feel everything as intensely as you can.
And then once you have allowed your feelings to run their course…pull it all back and then make the choice in that particular situation that will make you happy.
#6: Great relationships are about forgiveness.
Forgive yourself for being human.
Forgive the people who share your life for being human too.
NOBODY is perfect and you wouldn’t like it if you were anyway.
(Think about it…What would a perfect person want with someone as imperfect as you?)
We don’t change as we get older, we just become more who we really are.
Love the changes.
Laugh about them.
Then go out and share your wisdom.
#7: What you love about your partner is often what drives you nuts about them too.
My husband Jeff is laid back, incredibly chill to be around. He is an extreme introvert.
I love that he lets me shine in crowds because I am an extrovert.
But sometimes, when I want him to talk and help me with a conversation…
He just quietly sits there smiling at me.
So I while I do love his quiet nature, Sometimes it also drives me nuts.
#8: Care less. Love more.
There’s only so much room in your heart for causes and passions and even people.
So I have learned the value of Picking a few.
Loving them with intensity.
And then letting the rest take care of themselves.
This had freed up so much space in my life for the people and causes that I feel really passionate about, and that has made my live GLORIOUS!
#9: Spend time each day with God.
In His eyes you are perfect just the way you are, and I have found that when I spend time with people who can accept me exactly the way I am, and ask nothing of me but that I love them…
I want to be a better person.
I want to live a life that is worthy of that kind of devotion.
I will NEVER meet another person who gave me as much and has asked so little in return as my Savior has done for me.
So the highlight of my day is to spend time in prayer thanking Him for his unconditional love and acceptance, and asking Him to teach me how to be more like HIM.
So there you have it…
My 9 POWERFUL Insights that will GUARANTEE your HAPPINESS.
I pray that you will find the joy that I have by integrating these insights into my daily life.
This is one of the most accurate quotes I have ever read!
Let’s be like a child for a moment and pretend that we have just enrolled in a very special and unique classroom.
This classroom is where we will learn lessons that will transform us in ways we cannot possibly comprehend.
Are you ready to explore learning in a whole new way?
No meaningless homework?
In this classroom there will always be an opportunity for one more chance.
In this classroom you never have to experience failure because you are allowed to proceed at your very own pace, and your mistakes are forgiven by a loving and kind teacher.
Would you agree to attend a school where there was no tuition, no commuting,
no degree requirements?
What if at this school you could enjoy recess all day long if you wanted and the teacher played and celebrated right along side of you?
In this special school, the teacher is fun and forgiving.
And in her classroom you can look into her eyes and find love and acceptance unmatched by any other guide on Earth?
This classroom is a learning space where you can let your spirit soar.
You are not required to stay quiet.
Your ideas and feelings and needs count.
You can laugh and sing and dance and love as much as you want.
You have probably already guessed that the classroom is called “MOTHERHOOD”,
You are the student…
Your child is the teacher.
That is why it is such a loving and safe place for you to be in.
Heed this warning all you who enter this classroom…
This is not a classroom for the faint of heart or spirit.
It is a place with a few very strict requirements –
ones that will involve courage,
even some sleepless nights.
In order to learn the lessons that are being taught in this classroom you need to be willing to take full responsibility for yourself.
You have to be willing to open up to new ideas and patterns.
Because when you enter the classroom of MOTHERHOOD you are embarking on a journey where there is NO TURNING BACK even when the destination is so terrifying that you don’t know how you will survive it.
So while this can be a tough classroom, if you are willing to keep your eyes, ears, and hearts wide open your teacher will show you how to dance as if nobody is watching.
To work as if you don’t need the money.
And to love as if you have never been hurt.
Children, whether our own or those we encounter along our way, create an exhilarating new opportunity for our own transformations.
They are one of the greatest factors in our own personal growth.
They offer us the chance to learn the lessons we missed before in our lives.
They show us how to live, love, play and forgive.
Their marvelous sense of wonder and sheer excitement in living reminds us to look at each new day, every single minute with a renewed sense of enthusiasm.
Their innate sense of love and compassion and acceptance inspire us to engage with life at new and deeper levels.
Their love of learning and their courage to keep trying despite any setback, or supposed failure, encourages us to keep asking, keep daring, and to always take one more step forward in the direction of our goals.
Their natural instincts allow them to easily forgive. When I see the forgiving nature of my children it reminds me that I too need to learn to let go of my old patterns and old grievances.
I love the sheer magic that you can see in their sparkling eyes. Their true essence gives me every reason I need to greet each and every day as another peek inside the magic and mystery of life.
By responding to the opportunities that children provide, we learn anew how to reengage in life.
We are reminded how easy it really is to get un-stuck from our monotonous patterns where we do the same things, in the same way every day.
They show us how to move on from a mistake and how to not repeat old miseries that have been keeping us from realizing our hopes and dreams.
This has been especially true when I talk to my own mother about her beloved grandchildren.
She seems to understand better than I ever could just how precious a child really is.
She has told me that with each new grandchild that has been added to her family she has seen a new opportunity to reengage with the divine spark of life.
They bring the sense of unconditional love straight from Heaven into our homes and give us a second chance to make things right in our own lives.
Children give us one of the most precious gifts we can ever receive –
An invitation to learn and grow and bloom ourselves in a classroom unlike any other we have ever known.
So if MOTHERHOOD is a classroom…
How important is it to learn the lessons that our children are teaching us?