Friday, February 4, 2011

Another Parenting Book...

A couple of months ago, I went to a women's retreat where the speakers challenged us to step out in faith, with boldness, to follow through with things we felt God had put on our hearts but we were too afraid to do. I came home and shared what I had learned with Mike asking him what he thought. We came to one conclusion... to start writing a parenting book. You may be thinking, "Another parenting book?!? There are already so many out there to choose from." Let me explain why we want to start one.

The foster care system does not allow physical discipline to be used with thier children. Due to each child's unique background and the possible abuse that they may have faced, other forms of discipline are required. Through training classes and reading books, we developed our own little system that is based off of privileges. The privilege is the reward while not earning the privilege is the discipline. It is about earning the freedom to have certain responsibilities which carries certain privileges. But with inappropriate behavior, the responsibility is lost along with the privileges it carries. For example, our kids who work hard cleaning up the kitchen after dinner earn the privelege to stay up. If a lazy job is done, we deduce that they are tired and need to go to bed on time.

The ultimate goal is to raise our children to bring glory to God by being Christ-like role models and citizens who help contribute to our nation. That being said, we are raising them to act in accordance with Biblical ideals.

So in future blogs, I might post a quick idea that works with our kids. Here's the first one and it is on respecting each other:

If one child hurts another whether it is through physical harm (hitting, kicking, etc.) or personal harm (stealing, breaking, etc.), have the offender pay restitution with their food or dessert. Our youngest son kept stealing from other the other kids in our home while they were at school. After many trials of trying to get him to stop, we finally found something that made him feel it was not worth it to steal. He stole his sister's eye shadow and gouged out the powder making it useless. We decided he would then pay with his yummy food. We got delicious sandwich kebaps from a local German restaurant, brought them home, and dished them out. After prayer, we let everyone else begin to eat, except him. We explained that he needed to pay his sister back for the eye shadow he ruined and that since he didn't have enough money, he could pay with his lunch. She was saitisfied with the "repayment". We then made him a peanut butter and jelly sandwich to eat while we enjoyed lunch-to-go. Stealing has dropped dramatically in our home after that.

If you have any questions on how to deal with certain behaviors, email me. I love trying to help find creative ways to guide our children into making wise choices.

In Him,