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Monthly Archives: March 2012

The best thing my mother ever gave me and my daughter

In 2001, when my daughter, Jillian, was thirteen, we were in a book store and came across a section of journals by Thomas Kincaid called “Grandmother’s Memories to her Grandchild”. We liked the books so much that we bought three of them (one for Mother’s Memories, one for Grandmother’s Memories and one for Grandfather’s Memories) and sent them to my parents to fill in the very next day.

About six months later my mom came to visit us in Florida. She brought the journal, that I bought for her, completely filled out and gave it to my daughter. There were 120+ pages of my mother’s life in that book. I found out so much about my mom that day that I never knew. She filled out pages and pages of information about her feelings and her life. She described what was going on in the world in 1931, the year she was born, first day of school, first kiss, first date and even what it was like to hold me for the first time. She talked about her favorite Bible verses and what she would like to pass on to my daughter about God. Sharing this book with my mom and my daughter is one of the most amazing memories I have and I will never forget how special she made us both feel.

Tears stream down my face now as I remember reading that book. My mother said such kind things about me and also things she loved about me. The funny thing is that that was the first time I heard those things. Until that moment I didn’t even think my mother knew who I was.

In 2010, my mom went into the hospital because she was feeling weak. I brought the journal with me to the hospital so we could relive the memories we had when we first completed it and start on my own edition, “A Mother’s Memories to her Child”. I spent hours and hours with her and some of those hours she helped me fill out the remaining pages in the book that I bought for me to give to my daughter. She reminded me of childhood stories I had almost forgotten. There were times she wrote in it for me because her memory and hand writing was so much better than mine and at other times I wrote while she told me what was going on the year I was born, what I was like as a child, what my favorite things to do were and her memories of me as a child. The night before she went into surgery we finished that book together.

The next morning they wheeled my mom into surgery to have her aortic valve replaced and she did not survive the surgery. Little did I know the night before that those hand written pages would be the last words my mother would ever write. I will cherish those moments with my mother forever. I haven’t given the book to my daughter yet because I want to hold onto it a little bit longer but when I do I know she will cherish it as much as I do.

I learned from my experience of completing these journals with my mother that it is important to not put off what we could do today. Every day is precious. Never forget to tell your children you love them. Do and say things  that will leave lasting impressions in your children’s minds forever. Remember to document your memories while you still remember them. Use the My Turn Your Turn journal to record memories and photos of your children growing up, their achievements, challenges they overcame and even their favorite music, activities or books. And, create your own Thomas Kincaid journal with those memories by purchasing a hard copy on Amazon. You and your children will treasure those entries forever.

-Tracy

Visit us on our official website at http://www.MyTurnYourTurn.com. My Turn Your Turn is a co-parenting website designed to help organize families and improve communication between co-parents sharing children due to divorce or separation.  Specializing in co-parenting tools and shared parenting resources including an online custody calendar,  online divorce journal, child support tracker and more for blended families, single parents and high conflict divorce cases.

 

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Disciplining your children and step children, Are you fair?

  

I read a parenting book in 1999 about blended families that said the average blended family took about five years to acclimate as a family. I thought the author was crazy and was convinced that I could create a balanced blended family within a year. And, let me tell you that was one crazy year!

It was my first year as a step mom and one of the biggest pitfalls that I fell into was that whenever I wanted to reprimand my daughter and stepdaughter I found myself reprimanding only my daughter, hoping that the other one might get it. I was afraid to reprimand my step daughter and was more comfortable only reprimanding my own daughter.

Consequently my daughter got upset with me because she felt like I picked on her. It was true. I think that I believed that because my daughter loved me unconditionally, I could make the example of her and that because I was still in the process of earning the other child’s love I needed to go easy on her. I felt like my daughter should understand. I was wrong.

That was a very hard habit to break and it took a while to earn my daughter’s respect back for being an unfair parent. I had to learn how to reprimand both girls without alienating the other. It took time and patience to learn and earn the trust of both children.

I’d love to hear some ways that you handled your children and stepchildren fairly.

Written by: Tracy Taylor
Co-Written by: Erika Rossi-Raia
www.MyTurnYourTurnBlog.com

Visit us on our official website at http://www.MyTurnYourTurn.com. My Turn Your Turn is a co-parenting website designed to help organize families and improve communication between co-parents sharing children due to divorce or separation.  Specializing in co-parenting tools and shared parenting resources including an online custody calendar,  online divorce journal, child support tracker and more for blended families, single parents and high conflict divorce cases.

 

Seeds of Love

I was browsing the Internet and came across the “Seeds of Love” article on Joel Osteen’s website: http://www.lakewood.cc/pages/ministries/BlogDetail.aspx?bid=429

This particular article talked about the author, Melanie Stiles sitting on her grandmother’s lap and her grandmother looking into her eyes and asking “do you know how much God loves you?”.  The author wanted to say that the important thing was not the aspect of her question, but rather the fact that she was, “sowing seeds”. Seeds of love. These were seeds that impacted her life forever.

It made me think about my parenting style and what I tried very hard to do with my own children which was to give a direct sense of security and feelings of love. I always assumed that I was loved as a child but it wasn’t something we talked about in our home and I wanted more for my children. I wanted them to feel comfortable talking about their feelings and be inspired by the love surrounding them each day.

Are you sowing seeds of love? Are you looking straight into your children’s eyes and very intently saying I love you? Are you telling them that God loves them? Have you told them today?

Ponder about the garden of your child’s mind and let us know your thoughts. Do you have a great way of building confidence and instilling the feeling of security and love in your child’s life that you’d like to share with us at My Turn Your Turn Parenting? We’d love to know!

Tracy

Visit us on our official website at www.MyTurnYourTurn.com. My Turn Your Turn is a co-parenting website designed to help organize families and improve communication between co-parents sharing children due to divorce or separation.  Specializing in co-parenting tools and shared parenting resources including an online custody calendar,  online divorce journal, child support tracker and more for blended families, single parents and high conflict divorce cases.

 

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