Family Recreation

Flowers as a Gift

Flowers as a Gift

Flowers as a Gift

By: Christ CK

The Bible teaches that we are to show kindness and consideration to one another. To send flowers on special occasions is a good way to express love and kindness to those who are special in our hearts. Practicing love and showing kindness are always a good thing.

Other than expressing love and kindness, flowers go a long way when it comes to apologies and special occasions, but for the most part, the best time to give her flowers is when there's no occasion at all. When you buy her roses because you messed up, although the gesture is still wonderful, it's evident that it's a cry for forgiveness.

But if you buy her flowers just because you want her to know that you love her and think of her constantly, she'll feel more attractive and appreciated like never before. The element of surprise (considering there really is no special occasion) will also add to her pleasant revelation.

Valentine

Valentine's day is the day of love. Reach out to your loved ones with dazzling bouquets and vibrant flowers to make them feel special. Valentine's day flowers is the perfect way to say 'I love you', when your relationship is new and fragile, and a great reason to return to polite, courteous behavior, if you have been together for a while. Moreover, it's a good time for promises to maintain that romantic spirit throughout the year with a bouquet of beautiful Valentine's Day flowers.

Roses are ranked first on the Valentine's Day flower list. Roses of different colors have different meanings. Red roses are the Valentine's Day favorite - they symbolize passionate desire. Pink roses signify sophistication and elegance. Yellow is the "friendship" color for roses. White roses mean purity and fidelity. And purple is associated with royalty. A bouquet of purple roses is an excellent choice of Valentine's Day flowers, meant for the king/queen of your heart.

If you send Valentine's Day flowers to a man, choose crisp colors ' red, orange, and yellow. For a romantic masculine feel consider a linear floral design. Men would also respond well to blooming plants. When Valentine's Day is on a weekday, make his coworkers jealous with flowers delivered to his office.

Whatever Valentine's Day flowers you picked, don't forget to express your feelings with a note. Even a simple list of the reasons you love him/her for can be a touching gift and the words "I love you" will mean more than the most exquisite poetry.

Mother's Day

The Romans welcomed the month of May by dedicating the month to Flora, the Roman flower goddess; and spent the first day of May gathering flowers as offerings to her. Flowers have been associated with Mother's Day celebrations from the beginning. Even in the ancient world, the Mother Goddesses were celebrated with garlands of flowers. Anna Jarvis promoted carnations, the favorite flowers of her mother, as the official Mother's Day flowers. "White carnations were chosen because they represented the sweetness, purity and endurance of mother love. Red carnations, in time, became the symbol of a living mother." Today, bouquets of cut spring flowers are customary Mother's Day gifts.

Anniversary

Roses of differing colors have different meanings. Red is for love and respect, light pink is grace and interestingly sends the message 'Believe me,' while dark pink is for thankfulness. Light purple roses are for love at first sight and signify the partner is still enchanted, orange means that the spouse is enthusiastic and spellbound by their partner. There are many other colors of roses with other meanings. A single rose in full bloom simply says, "I still love you."

There are also flowers for many of the in-between wedding anniversaries, and you can easily look them up. If you're just trying to find the right flower for the first anniversary get your spouse some Pansies.

Birthday

Birthday flower delivery for a special person marks the occasion of another year on the planet with something that appeals to the senses of sight, smell, and sometimes touch that brightens the occasion. Giving a gift of flowers that a giver knows will please the recipient is a recognized "feel good" gesture, while being the receiver of the bouquet is equally delightful. When the celebrant is a child, we don't often send birthday flowers, but instead choose a bouquet of balloons or even cookies shaped like flowers and resting on a stick painted to look like a stem. Floral gifts properly mark the birthdays of women and girls from puberty to old age. If the way to a man's heart is through his stomach, the way to a woman's heart is through her love for blossoms.

When a customer is looking outside of his community for a birthday flower delivery, it is important that he searches for an online florist with years of experience, recognized service, secure ordering, and satisfaction guaranteed. Both industry credentials and customer testimonials count, and any online awards they might have won should count as big pluses. Cost may be a consideration, and prices are usually posted by each picture of an arrangement on the website. Keep in mind that when there are two prices quoted for an arrangement, the smaller amount spent will always mean smaller number of blossoms as well, so inexpensive isn't always the best way to go when someone wants to send birthday flowers.

Why flower gifts?

Ordering from a small-time brick and mortar florist listed in your neighborhood phone directory could result in a nasty surprise, when yellow roses arrive instead of the long-stemmed red roses or carnations are delivered and you are charged more than the cost agreed upon, worse still they may never be delivered. These scenarios do happen.

Why risk yourself in these situations? You could simply switch on your computer, browse through the Internet and place your order in any well-recognized online florist. The quickest way to deliver flowers to your family living in another city or to send a corporate to another country is to use online flower delivery as well. These online florists also offer a variety of products like floral gift baskets and hampers and other unique gifts for every occasion.

Many big companies have a network consisting of professional local florists worldwide. You can order online for same day or next day delivery. Flowers can also be sent over overseas with the international flower service that many of the big companies operate. These companies ensure you that the recipient will enjoy the beautiful fresh flowers and plants, secure ordering and guaranteed satisfaction.

 

Author Bio
By Christ CK
www.GflowerShop.com is an example of such online florist, which provides international flower delivery services. Our website catalogs a wide range of products from unique gifts to all kinds of flower. We ensure secure ordering and promise fresh flowers delivery.

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Dog Obedience Training

Dog Obedience Training

By: Ted Belfour

Which dog owner won't feel proud of his disciplined dog? Reversely, who won't feel ashamed of an unruly dog? It is very important for your dog to be absolutely obedient to commands of his owner. You can't expect your dog to be obedient by birth or nature. You have to take pains to make him understand obey your commands.

Obedience training to your dog can be imparted in many ways - two of the more popular methods are typically carrot and stick methods. First method heavily depends on the stick or punishment approach. Second method deals with the reward system for the dog.

Leash and collar method of dog obedience training has survived for a long time now. It is primitive but still mostly followed. The premises of this training method are based here - leash will be the mode of communication with the dog. Dog must understand the commands, and if not obeyed to, leash should be put to action. Using leash alone is not sufficient - dog must be made aware of the good and bad behavior. Once tracked on the path to bad behavior, dog can be punished with the leash.

Reward system doesn't believe in punishing the dog. It follows psychological approach to deal with dog training. Dog is made to know the good parts of behavior and rewarded for the same. His ugly behavior is neglected in the form of psychological treatment. The trainer or owner walks away from the dog immediately after the show of bad behavior. Dog is an intelligent animal to understand the difference between the bad and good behavior.

Whatever technique is used for dog obedience training, it is important to know that the training must be consistent. Dogs get easily confused due to double standards employed. If you expect your dog never to jump on the bed, never let or invite him on the bed. Ensure that your dog never reaches the bed.

Obedience training starts on the fundamental issues like sitting, standing, walking, listening to your commands & following those, sitting in the car, etc.

The dog owner can easily impart obedience training. You may find alternates to this by getting your dog enrolled with some obedience classes or dog instructor. Evaluate all the training techniques, methods, equipment, infrastructure, experience, etc before taking the final decision on outside help. Remember, the most ideal way will be yourself to be the instructor. Your dog will love it.

 

Author Bio
Ted Belfour is the founder of www.house-training-puppy.info and www.training-a-puppy.info websites providing information on dog training.

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Scrapbooks - The Perfect Gift

Scrapbooks - The Perfect Gift

By: Ted Belfour

There is something magical about special occasions - it's no wonder that we call them special. Long lost family reunites and gripes and moans are put aside, all for the celebration of that important event. Food is shared around an all-embracing table, where everyone digs in with enthusiasm, while conversation bubble everywhere, trickling into one another as people share their thoughts on almost everything under the sun. Whether it's a wedding or a holiday dinner, there is something about these special occasions that makes you wish they could last forever.

The real pity is they can't, but the next joy of these happy occasions comes in the remembering. And what better way to commemorate the event the family gathering marked by gathering these memories into one bound volume so that it might be treasured forever and limitlessly shared? This is why the gift of a scrapbook is such a perfect one.

A scrapbook is the perfect way to collect the memorabilia surrounding an event and commemorate the occasion. Whether you create a scrapbook for the party's hostess, the birthday boy or girl, or the bride and groom, you can be sure that you will be sharing a gift that will bring joy to many for years to come.

A scrapbook is so easy to make, and gives so very much. We have all experienced the hard work involved in hosting a dinner party or organising a wedding, and can appreciate how much we miss in our busy attention to the important details of running an event, or being the center of its attention. By creating a scrapbook, you can share with your harried host the feelings of joy and frivolity that their guests enjoyed, allowing you to say thank you in a unique and personal way.

At its heart, the gift of a scrapbook is the gift of memory - gathering up remnants of a happy event, a scrapbook captures something of the essence of an occasion, recreating something of the pleasure that such an event created. The simple collation of photos, flowers, and other mementos creates a gift that surpasses all others, comprised of things that are far more important for the memories they engender.

If you are looking for the ideal thank you gift, then look no further than a scrapbook. Other gifts might ultimately fall from use, but the gift of memories will live forever.

 

Author Bio
Dave is the owner of freescrapbookbug.info and findscrapbook4free.info websites that provide information on scrapbooking.

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Anniversary Party Planning

Anniversary Party Planning

Who to invite

25th, 40th and 50th Anniversary parties celebrate the life of the couple. You can invite any one who's lives they have touched. Anniversary parties vary from small and intimate parties at home to large catered events held at restaurants, hotels or reception halls. What ever the size, make it special and meaningful for the anniversary couple with personal touches.

Invitation Ideas

Photo anniversary invitations are popular, using the original wedding photo. If the wedding photo is not available, we can make you a custom anniversary invitation with a year wreath on our fanfare design. We can also create your card with a current photo.

To make the evening more fun, we suggest you ask each guest to bring something to add to a scrapbook for the couple... a story, memory or token from their past. Simply note your request with the invitation. You can assemble these into the book before the event or collect them at the anniversary party.

Be sure to think up a special toast for the anniversary couple, and ask others to share stories and toasts, too. You may want to ask important friends to prepare a toast to honor the anniversary couple.

Decoration Ideas

Gold rules for 50th Anniversaries; Silver for 25th Anniversaries. Try picking up the gold or silver anniversary theme with accents in the china, flatware, linens, crystal, and napkin holders or ribbons or beads tied around the napkins. It is easy to add a matching touch with gold or silver tone candlesticks or votives. Scatter gold or silver picture frames holding photos of the couple, and/or use small matching frames as place holders or party favors. You can use gold or silver ink on placecards, and gold or silver doilies or runners on the tables.

An alternate, if desired, is to use the colors from the original wedding. What was their color scheme? Aqua and white? Pink? Yellow? Since retro colors are in now, you could have a lot of fun with this.

Music

Play music from the couple's dating years, as well as the first decades together. Find out "their song" and perhaps some songs they loved back then.

Author Bio
Partnering with Naptime Cards is like having your own personal artist design custom invitations for you at economical prices. Order your baptism invitations online or call us at 1-800-421-9521 for further information about planning a baby baptism party.

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Make the Right Move

Make the Right Move

By: Donald Lee

America is always on the move-literally. Experts estimate that one out of five households move to a new residence each year. If you do the math, that amounts to a whopping 1.5 million moves every month. Those are some amazing stats, especially if you consider how trying and stressful such moves can be. It's a wonder that one household-let alone millions!-can pull it off.

If you're part of this statistic and on the verge of a big move, though, don't be daunted by the whole process of packing up your stuff, loading it, and dragging it to your new home. There is a way to move without losing any valuables, too much money, or your mind, whether you're moving across town, or across the continent. With some common sense, some help from professionals, friends, and loved ones, and the essential "Do's and Don'ts" list in this article, you can be successful and avoid all of the mishaps and stress that usually come with moving.

We'll start with the positive-the Do's on our list. Make sure to check off all of these before you even start stuffing boxes with your stuff. Do:

  • Line up help for packing and moving your stuff. It depends on your budget whether you hire professional movers or call in the volunteer brigade (your friends and family). Either way, round up somebody.

     

  • Have a chat with your post office, making sure they know to forward your mail to your new address. In many cases, you will need to fill out a mail-forwarding form.

     

  • Purchase brand-new moving boxes from your moving company or truck-renting company. They're worth the money. Bugs and vermin can stow away in old boxes. No need to give them a free ride to your new digs.

     

  • Sort through your stuff for old valuables you don't need anymore to sell. Be honest with yourself, and you may be able to pay for your move with the money you make-especially if you sell them at convenient and easy marketplaces like online classified sites.

     

  • Drop off old valuables that aren't worth selling at a Goodwill or other charity thrift shop.

     

  • Think comfort and safety on move day. Pack a first-aid kit with medicines and hygiene products, as well as a change of clothes and light snacks.

     

Now onto the Don'ts. Avoid these missteps, and your move will feel like an exciting adventure, not painful torture. So don't:

  • Take on the entire move without any help and worse, without any planning.

     

  • Forget to find out your local post office's rules for transferring mail. And while you're at it, don't let it slip your mind to change your address, as well.

     

  • Move without your kids and pets or leave them home alone during trips to and from your old and new residences. For pets and small children, your best bet is a sitter.

     

  • Grab a few used vegetable boxes from the supermarket or grocery store. They may be cheap, but bugs and dirt may be hiding inside them. You want to start in your new home with a clean slate, not an infested one.

     

  • Haul old kitchen junk, like worn-out plastic containers and chipped glasses, with you to your home. You can save yourself a lot of heartache, and muscle aches, if you use the move as a chance to get rid of this kind of stuff.

     

  • Pack expired canned foods, leftovers, and perishables. Anything that can spill, go rotten, and cause a mess in any way is not worth the effort. Again, think clean slate.

     

  • Throw a garage sale, sell what you can, and save the leftovers for the garage sale you tell yourself you'll have next spring. Truth is, this stuff will probably be clogging your storage space for years to come. If you want to sell it, try an easier and more profitable way, such as online classified ads.

     

  • Forget to unpack box after box after you move in and then when you can't find something (because it's buried in a box somewhere), go shopping for it. Unpack as quickly as possible. You won't feel at home in your new place until you do.

     

These Do's and Don'ts will help you have a "moving" experience when you settle into your new home. But instead of tears of frustration and anguish pouring out your eyes, they will be tears of joy.

 

Author Bio
Donald Lee is the public relations manager for Buysellcommunity.com. Buysellcommunity provides free classified listing services for individuals and businesses to market their products and services online. For global and localized classifieds, please visit http://www.buysellcommunity.com - Free Buy & Sell Classifieds

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Creating a Memory Book through Scrapbooking

Creating a Memory Book through Scrapbooking

By: Marcus Harbert

The art of Scrapbooking has become very popular. Scrapbooking allows you to create memory books that are so much more than the old standard, boring photo albums of yesterday. Using the immense supplies available for you to choose from in your Scrapbooking, you can create memory books that reflect not only your personality: but that also help you to capture the true "essence" of those special memories you want remembered forever.

You can begin making your memory scrapbook, sure to become a treasure to be shared from generation to generation with basic materials like patterned paper, rubber stamps, patterns, stencils, stickers, serrated- scissors, and the photos you already have. This is just a small example of the many supplies that are available for you to choose from in creating your memory book. You can find Scrapbooking supplies online and in many malls and outlet stores today. Software programs are also available to help you design the perfect memory book for your precious memories.

Begin by looking at a photo; recall the memories and feelings that arise by looking at this picture that has been captured on film. What does this picture represent to you? Maybe it is the love of family and friends, or the adventure you found on your last vacation. Whatever it is, consider how you might best represent these feelings, and memories so that someone else looking at this same photograph, even a few generations removed, will be able to understand the emotions and circumstances surrounding the images of the people, places, or things seen in this particular piece of film. Being able to know why a certain picture was taken, and what it meant to the one who took the shot, results in a 'bonding' between the original picture taker, the event captured, and the one who is now looking at these images.

Once you have started to think about what this picture means to you and how you would like to best represent that meaning, you can start to create a memory scrapbook that will keep these precious memories alive forever. The best memory books have pages that employ the use of many different types of materials. Don't be afraid to mix stickers with cut-outs (made by designed scissors), patterned papers, stencils, rubber stamp images, markers, crayons, and labels. Let your creative-side come out in the designing of your memory books.

With a little creativity it is easy to create memory scrapbooks that are a joy to share with family and friends. Family history can be captured in these books: to be recalled in your lifetime and as testimonials of relatives in the past, to be known and remembered by the generations to follow. You not only have a plethora of choices in materials already available to choose from in creating your memory book, new ideas, and materials are created every day for those who want to use scrapbooking as a way to create memory books that will last forever.

What should you use to hold your newly created memory pages? You can choose to use a standard photo album, one that you can decorate using the same materials used in making your memory pages. Or maybe you will want to complete your memory book by laminating a couple of special memory pages for the front and back covers, and then "binding" them together with all of your memory pages into a book. You can learn more about bookbinding through books and software programs. Scrapbook stores and the internet are also good sources of information about scrapbooking and bookbinding.

 

Author Bio
This article was produced for www.Lostcrafts.com, a site which is dedicated to preserving the crafts and trades of yesterday.

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10 Ways To Be a Terrific Parent!

10 Ways To Be a Terrific Parent!

10 Ways To Be a Terrific Parent!
By Troy Price

Every parent's hope and desire for their child is for him or her to be happy and successful in life. However, the reality is that despite the good intentions of parents, many of today's children are being neglected and not properly lead that will put them on that path to success. When there is no direction and no program in place, both the parent and child are left wandering aimlessly through a jungle of unknowns that often leads to misery and disaster.

Below is a road map that will give you hope and direction if you follow the guidelines set forth. It will help you to be not just a good parent but a terrific parent! Use it, apply it, and watch what happens. You will begin to see yourself in a different light and feel better about your parenting abilities.

So let's get you on the right road!

1. Have a discipline system in place and stick with it.

Whether or not children will admit to it, they desire discipline but more importantly direction on how to behave properly. When there is a lack of rules and inconsistency to enforce the rules, children quickly become confused as do the parents. This causes a lot of unnecessary frustration and tension that can easily be solved in two simple steps: One, have a simple system in place that clearly identifies the rules and consequences; and two, be consistent in enforcing the rules. It is important that both the child and parent understand how the system works and how it can benefit both.

When a parent neglects to consistently enforce the rules and carry out the system, he or she sets up false hopes and expectations that don't carry any value behind it. The child quickly learns that the system is weak, is not executed properly, and therefore begins to exploit those weak gaps. The child also learns how to manipulate to their advantage the inconsistency of both the system and parent and therefore gains more power over the parent. Meanwhile, the parent can't understand why they are losing the discipline battle with their child and becomes more frustrated and stressed out.

Whatever discipline system you create, make sure it is fair and that you firmly carry it out. Never give in or waiver from it and always be consistent. Once the child and parent understand the rules of the system and how to play by it, there will be less confusion, anxiety, and better communication. You will soon discover that your child's attitude and behavior will quickly turn around and your relationship with him or her will be happier and healthier.

2. Get Involved and Often.

It's been said that the greatest investment a parent can ever make in their child's life is spending quality time with them. When you are a part-time parent you get a part-time child. If you only put in 50 percent, you only get out 50 percent. If you want a strong and lasting relationship with your child, you have to be willing to make personal sacrifices and put in the time and effort with your child. It doesn't matter what you do as long as you do it together. Again, it's about the quality of time you spend together, not the quantity of activities.

Growing up, I played a lot of sports. The one thing I hated more that anything else was sitting on the bench and watching others in the heat of battle. I wanted more than anything to be in the middle of it all and when I wasn't it tore me up inside. No one likes to sit on the bench or "ride the pine" because it's lonely and boring. Everyone wants a piece of the action and maybe if their lucky enough, be the hero. When you sit on the bench as a parent, you miss out on some of the most precious moments of your child's life. Moments that you can never get back and ones that may never come again. Don't be a spectator parent. Get off the bench and into the middle of the fray. You'll be glad you did and so will your child.

When at all possible, try to be there for as many activities for your child as you can. And not just show up as I mentioned. Get involved by actively participating. My two oldest boys play baseball and so that I could spend more time with them, I help coach their little league team. It is a blast helping kids learn the great game of baseball but more importantly, I get to be directly involved in my children's lives while teaching and leading them. I know it makes a big difference to my boys when I am there cheering them on and supporting them at the field level. Even though they may not say it or fully appreciate me being there with them, I see it when my boys smile and high-five me once they round third. It is at that moment when I realize that this is where I need to be.

3. Set and Be a Great Example.

The role model that will have the greatest impact and influence on your child for either good or bad in their lifetime is you - the parent. For girls, that parent is the mother and for the boys, the father. That's not to say that both parents don't have a great influence on their child because they do, but studies have shown that same sex gender plays a greater role in how that child is influenced based upon the sex of that child. And from a logical stand point, that makes perfect sense. Females understand females better than a male and vice-versa and for obvious reasons. Nonetheless, both parents need to set and be a great example for their child.

When children are brought into this world, they learn from their parents and siblings within the home how to walk, speak, think, behave and acquire new knowledge and understanding. As time goes on and that child gets older, they begin to learn from others outside of their home environment. That's when they begin to simulate into society and learn new attitudes, feelings, and behaviors. Their mind and body are trying to formulate all this new knowledge and conceptualize how this information will be processed. In short, they are trying to find their identity and where they fit in the scheme of it all. It can be a very daunting and challenging task.

That's why it is so critical that your child gets off on the right foot to be better prepared and handle the difficult challenges that await him or her. You as a parent have a tremendous responsibility and duty to ensure that when your child leaves home on their own that they stand a fighting chance of surviving and thriving in a completely new environment that will shape who they are and who they will become. But before society teaches them, you have the distinct advantage to nurture and mold them into success so that when the gale force winds of life attack, their foundation will be strong enough to withstand it.

By setting a positive example right from the get-go, your child will know what pattern of behavior to follow. They will quickly learn what they should and should not do based on effective discipline. They will lean what is acceptable and is not acceptable based on your teachings.

The old saying, "Monkey see monkey do" is so applicable to parenting because children do exactly what their parents do. So, set the correct example from the beginning and then practice what you preach thereafter. Refuse to be the kind of parent who says, "Don't watch what I'm doing, only listen to what I say." What? Not only is that confusing but that's poor teaching. In essence, you are saying to your child, "Only learn the good and not the bad from me." I'm sorry but it doesn't work that way. You have to teach your child the good from the bad and then model the correct behavior in what is appropriate. When you do so, your child will understand much easier and quicker the next time he or she encounters a similar situation and know exactly what he or she must do to be successful.

4. Listen More, Talk Less.

Nobody likes to hear other people talk, especially when they drone on about themselves or have to hear an ear full for something they did wrong. Instead, take the more effective route and listen rather than talk. The rule of thumb is in any conversation, listen 80 percent and talk only 20 percent of the time. That can be especially tough for a parent since we always want to teach but here's the lesson: you can do more good by listening then you can by talking.

Stephen R. Covey coined the phrase: "Seek first to understand, then to be understood." If you want people to really "hear" or understand you, you must first listen to them. Allow them to share their thoughts and feelings without interruption. In most cases when you do, you learn a few things:

1. You tend to be less judgmental

2. You become less selfish because you're not trying to impose your will

3. You learn that most people figure the answer out themselves

4. You gather more insight and information from that person's point of view that you would otherwise

5. You become more sympathetic and learn patience

6. You build trust and respect

7. You are open to other alternatives or solutions that are not possible if you are the one dominating the conversation

Through the act of listening, you gain a better perspective of the whole scenario and can more clearly communicate your thoughts that best connect with the receiver. So the next time you go to talk, don't. Listen, learn, and then listen some more.

5. Be Gentle yet Firm.

It's always a fine balance of having just the right amount of gentleness mixed with firmness. There are times when you need to be firm, especially when it comes to rules and reprimand but there are also times when you must be gentle and offer a warm hug and comforting words.

There is a time and place for everything and you will have to learn when the right time is to use either or both simultaneously. When you are firm, be consistent and don't waiver from it. Don't be afraid to be so as well as be afraid of how your child will react. Do not be belligerent, overbearing, or intimidating. Not only is this bullying and abusive but manipulative. You will never win any battle by behaving in this manner. Instead, be calm, think calmly, and speak calmly. If need be, step back from the situation, collect your thoughts, regain your composure, and try again. Never act out in aggression or have emotion involved. Always defuse the situation by first removing emotion or yourself from the equation. When you do, reasonable heads will prevail and a solution will be reached sooner with little to no damage.

6. One-On-One Time is Gold.

Everyone wants to feel valued and feel like they are the only ones in the world. This is so true particularly with children. When a parent goes out of their way to make their child feel like they are a king or queen and show it through actions and not just words alone, that is worth more than all the riches in the world and 10 trips to Disney land.

If you ask your child what their fondest memory is as a family or with you, they won't necessarily say the time we went to so- and- so but will say the time you spent with him or her listening, teaching, and helping them. He or she will remember the camping trips and how you taught them to chop wood or set up a tent or the campfire songs. He or she will remember you teaching them how to throw a curve ball or a spiral or the time you took off work to be at their music recital or ballet. He or she will remember you staying up late and helping them with math or a science project that's due the next morning. Those are the small big moments that last and make a difference. Those are the golden moments that define who you are as a parent and what kind of parent your child will be. Look and focus on the gold mine and you will reap bountifully.

7. Love and Lift Always.

Children crave attention and in particular their parent's attention. Even as adults, we want to always please our parent's and make them proud of us. By virtue of being born, everyone should automatically be loved without strings attached. Love is the single greatest power that can literally change lives.

Over the years, there have been numerous psychology studies on the effect that love has on a newborn. What psychologists learned is that babies, who were coddled, loved, given a lot of affection and tension from an early age grew up "normal" with little to know side effects. In contrast, babies who were given less coddling, attention, and affection developed severe mental, psychological, and social issues. And in rare cases, a few of the babies literally died of a broken heart.

Without love, there is no life. And when we withhold our love from our children or make it conditional, we are slowing killing the life out of those precious individuals. Always give and receive of your love freely and let it grow in your children. Love has and always will endure forever.

One of the primary characteristics of love is support. When we love others, we should lift them as well. We should never belittle or put others down, especially our children. If we want to lift someone up we have to be standing on higher ground. Much like lifting someone out of a ditch, we can't if they are leveled or below us.

To lift up our children, we should always say kind and encouraging words that are genuine. Phrases such as, "You're a great kid!" or "I'm proud of you!" or "I knew you could do it!" are simple yet powerful ways to build self-confidence and self-esteem in a child or adolescent struggling emotionally to survive. Always build up your children and never tear them down.

8. Be Forgiving and Less Critical.

It is so easy to "fly of the handle" by yelling and screaming then it is by using self-restraint and mannerisms. How many of us have been guilty (far too often I imagine) of tearing a strip off our child in the heat of the moment only to feel guilt and remorse afterwards? The sad thing is that in most cases, the incident that your child was involved in was insignificant but yet, as a parent, we want to "teach our child a lesson" and to "get our point across" so that he or she will never do it again. So what do you do? You holler in a loud voice and threaten the child with severe punishment hoping to scare fear into him or her so that they will never do it again. Guess what? The chances of them repeating that same act or behaving in a similar manner are great. Why? Because we as humans don't learn things just once. Otherwise, we would all be virtuosos and be fluent in 10 languages. Years later, the kid may not remember what exactly he did but he will remember how his Mom or Dad reacted and the feelings he felt as a result. As humans, we tend to forget certain events but rarely do we forget feelings.

I recall a story someone told me years ago that stuck in my head. He said, "If you want to teach a child not to touch the stove, put his or her hand on the stove and see what happens. I guarantee he or she will never touch the stove again."

I said to him, "How do you know this?"

He responded, "You see this scar (pointing to his hand). My Dad did that to me when I was a kid and I have never forgotten it."

I'm sorry but I don't need to "touch the stove" to know that it will burn me if I do. Just like I don't need to walk on the moon to know that it exists. I can learn from other people's mistakes and more importantly, from correct principles and teachings then by actually participating.

As a parent, you need to be less critical and more forgiving. You make mistakes as well and so why do you expect your child to be perfect? After all, they too are learning and trying to create their own identity and part of that learning comes through trial and error. That is a good thing, not bad. So don't belittle him or her for learning and not always knowing what the right thing is that he or she should do. Be patience, be supportive, and see these opportunities as teaching moments to expound the correct methods of carrying out an activity.

9. Be There.

One of my biggest pet peeves in life is people who say that will do something and then don't. Where I come from, we call it integrity - something that has been forgotten over the years.

Not too long ago, we needed our roof repaired. My wife and I had called around to a dozen roofing companies leaving voice mail and email messages. Only two out of the twelve actually called us back and of those two, one of them didn't email me until eight days later. If you have ever tried to hire tradespeople, you know what I am talking about.

So, we finally tracked down what seemed like the only roofing company in town and after pleading and prodding for them to come, they did after three weeks of our initial call. By then, the monsoons had come and were causing considerable damage to our home. When they showed up to our home, one of the tradesmen got his ladder out, climbed on top of the roof, went from one end to the other and then came back down and said, "Yep, it's damaged, we'll have to fix it." He then said, "We'll be back."

Oh he came back alright, four weeks later! And when he did, he only did a partial job and then left again. These shenanigans continued on for weeks. I wanted desperately to fire him but I had no one else who would come and the roof needed to be fixed. After being polite and patient the first few times (I didn't want to tick him off and have him leave for good) I finally had enough. I called him up and left a terse message. I even wrote him a flaming email that got his attention. Sure enough, he came the next day and finished the job. In the end, we got our roof completed. What should have only taken a day, took over ten long and painful weeks. When you say you are going to be there or do something, do it. Don't lie and don't procrastinate. If you can't do it, then be honest enough to say so and don't commit to it. And if you do commit to something and a situation arises, have the decency to let the other person know. They will understand and forgive you. Don't leave them hanging and coward off. It makes you look bad and puts a black mark on your good family name.

When you tell your child you will be there for his or her school play or sporting event or pick them up from work, be there! If you don't, your child quickly learns that your word doesn't mean anything and three things happen: one, your child loses trust and confidence in you; two, your child internalizes your "mishap" or "lie" as them not being important enough for you to be there; and three; your child learns from your poor example and pretty soon, guess what starts to happen? Instead of your child coming home on time, he or she begins to come home later and later and uses the excuse, "I forgot" or "I was busy." Hum... does this sound familiar? It should. You taught them this, remember? And you didn't even realize it! Be there and your kids will be there for you.

10. Teach and Lead.

Every single day presents new learning opportunities, not only for you as a parent but for your child. Always seek to teach and lead whether the situation is good or bad. As parents, we are quick to point out the bad and teach the right but seldom to we praise the good moments and reinforce good decisions that are children make.

As a parent, learn to have faith and trust in your child. Allow them to make mistakes and to learn on their own from those mistakes. Guide your children through situations and have them discover for themselves what the correct choices or decisions they should have made. Point out to your child what would have happened had they made a better choice or decision so that they can visualize the outcome at their own level.

As you teach, always remember to lead. Lead by example and through encouragement. Learn to walk-the-walk and talk-the -talk. Children would much rather follow your actions and behaviours than what you say. Talk is cheap but actions speak volume. Lead by good example and your children will follow the leader. Lead by bad example and your children will still follow the leader.

Always be thinking, "How can I better lead my children and be a better parent?" In most cases, your children will teach you without you even knowing it. The secret is to listen and observe, ask questions and take genuine interest in them and their lives. When you do so, you will grow as a parent and as a leader and so will your children. Learn from each other and you will learn to be better.

Troy

Parenting With Results

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8 Essential Life Skills to Teach Your Kids

8 Essential Life Skills to Teach Your Kids

8 Essential Life Skills to Teach Your Kids
By Kristen Wint

If you're like me, teaching your kids as you go, imparting wisdom to them as they make their way along the road of life, how often do you sit down and really think about the essential life skills you'd like them to have? Take a few minutes to brainstorm what's most important to you and your partner when it comes to the competencies that are integral to setting your kids up for success and start focusing on them today.

8 Essential Life Skills to Teach Your Kids:

1. Unconditional Love

By loving your children openly and wholeheartedly every day, you are showing them how to love themselves and others. Teaching kids to accept themselves for who they are will enable them to do the same with others. They must also be willing to forgive friends and family in order to love them unconditionally.

2. Social Awareness and Manners

Impart social and conversational skills from a young age by letting kids join in on adult gatherings from time to time. Don't make a habit of always segregating your children from the adults - they can learn a lot about etiquette, social cues and the art of conversation from watching grown-ups. These settings are also a good time to work on basic manners including the consistent use of "please," "thank you," "pardon me," as well as proper dining etiquette.

3. Respect for Others

Children learn respect from their family and it starts with family members caring for each other's physical space, thoughts, interests and needs. When kids feel that what's important to them is held in high regard by others, they will be able to emulate the same respect for their family and peers.

4. All Things Nature

Instill a lifelong love of the outdoors and of nature by spending plenty of time in the fresh air, in all kinds of weather. Let your kids climb trees at the park, plant seedlings in the garden, feed the birds in your backyard and jump in rain puddles on the street. All ages love summer camping, day hiking and picnics by the lake. When you give your kids a lot of exposure to our beautiful planet, it will make them appreciate it more and want to protect it for future generations.

5. Good Hygiene

Start early to create good hygiene habits that will stay with your kids forever - from teaching proper hand washing and teeth brushing techniques to tots, to encouraging daily bathing for sweaty teens. Make learning daily habits fun for young kids by singing, using props and giving out reward stickers. Good hygiene sets them up for good health and well-being in later life.

6. Food Preparation

Get your kids in the kitchen early, helping to select meals, prep food and cook with you. My son learned to prepare snacks with his classmates in preschool and loved it. He's been comfortable in our kitchen ever since and is not afraid to use a knife, stir a pot or get his hands dirty. Start by showing them how to make simple soups and pastas and work your way up to more complicated dishes.

7. Smart Shopping and Saving

Show your children the difference between whole foods and processed foods, how to eat in season and how to be savvy shoppers. Talk to them about brand versus non-brand, retail versus wholesale, and how to budget their money. Even young kids can save money in their piggy banks and learn how to bargain at a garage sale. Older children can open a bank account, start saving and help with shopping and errands.

8. Tidiness

With my recent goal of getting my house more organized, I've been reading "the life-changing magic of tidying up" by Marie Kondo. She highlights the fact that most of us have never been properly taught how to tidy! Start early by teaching your kids how to fold clothing neatly so they can find articles easier, and have them sort through their personal belongings to keep only things that "spark joy." A tidy room means a tidy mind, and ensures children can cut through the clutter to focus on what's important.

More Time Moms designs tools to make your busy life easier, so you can spend more time with your family. All of our bestselling titles, including the original and #1 bestselling Family Organizer and the Family Meals cookbook are designed by moms to help you manage your family schedule and are available online at http://www.moretimemoms.com. For more great parenting tips and tricks, check out our blog at http://musings.moretimemoms.com/ and join the Family Meals Challenge for free recipes, dinnertime tips and games.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Kristen_Wint/1704739
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Traditional Southern Breakfast Recipes for Mother's Day

Traditional Southern Breakfast Recipes for Mother's Day

Traditional Southern Breakfast Recipes for Mother's Day

By: Nicola Kennedy


An Easy and Delicious Mother's Day Breakfast

Make this Mother's Day unforgettable with one of these breakfast menus, or use your imagination and substitute.

Quick and easy but delicious, the breakfast casserole is put together the night before. A delicious cantaloupe smoothie and easy muffins make this breakfast memorable.

Western Ham and Egg Casserole
Make this casserole the night before, then refrigerate and pop it in the oven in the morning.

Ingredients:
8 slices white bread, crust removed, cut into cubes
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese
1 1/4 cups cubed, cooked ham (about 8 ounces)
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
6 eggs, beaten
3 cups milk

Preparation:
Place bread cubes in a lightly greased 12x8x2-inch baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese, ham, onion, and green pepper. Whisk together eggs and milk; pour over ham and cheese mixture. Cover and refrigerate for 8 hours. Remove from refrigerator; let stand for 30 minutes. Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 40 minutes or until set.
Western ham and egg casserole serves 8.

An Extra-Special Mother's Day Breakfast

Here's an elegant breakfast for anyone who loves to cook. Perfect for Mother's day or any special occasion breakfast. For a touch of indulgence, serve this breakfast with champagne and orange juice Mimosas.

Eggs Benedict - Fruit Compote With Pears
Sour Cream Cinnamon Rolls
Strawberry Smoothies or Mimosas
Hot Coffee or Tea

Southern Breakfast

Here's a traditional Southern breakfast, from grits to biscuits and gravy.

Grits
Scrambled Eggs Deluxe
Ham with Red Eye Gravy
Biscuits with Sausage Gravy or Pecan Pancakes
Orange Juice, Hot Coffee, or Tea

Always remember to add a bud vase with her favorite flower to give any breakfast in bed that special touch. Don't forget the cards and her other gifts too, she will start out the day with a HUGE smile on her face and go to work showing off what her family did for her.

 

Author Bio
Nicola Kennedy has enjoyed some great Mother's Days, both as a grateful mom and a loving daughter. She can help you find great Mother's Day gift ideas with tips and news, information and views at www.I-Love-My-Mom.com

Article Source: http://www.ArticleGeek.com - Free Website Content


Playing the Judge: The Who, What and Why behind the best known toy awards

Who, What and Why Behind the Best Known Toy Awards

Playing the Judge: The Who, What and Why behind the best known toy awards

By: Heather Rhoades

Parents today want toys that are both fun and educational for their children. Toy manufacturers want toys that are big hits with both kids and parents. Enter in the Toy Awards. There are several awards given each year for Best of Breed toys, but they all judge toys on different criteria. Some may judge from a kids point of view, while others may be from an educators point of view, while others judge toys based on an adults view of what a kid would like. We have listed some of the best known toy awards and how those awards judge toys.

Family Fun Toy Award
This toy award is given out by the Family Fun magazine, which is a magazine for parents with children. The Family Fun Toy Award is broken into categories for both age and style of toy, plus a Top Ten list which includes all the toys together. Family Fun Toy Award only judges toys that have been introduced by toy makers for the upcoming year.

Family Fun Toy Award is judged solely by children and goes through two rounds of voting. The first round is with a group of 100 - 200 children conducted at a research firm. The toys that are voted as the children's favorites then go onto round two. Round two consists of a group of 1000-1500 children at day-care centers trying and voting for their favorite toys.

All the votes are then tabulated and the results are published in the Family Fun magazine and on the Family Fun website.

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Awards
Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Awards is also referred to as the Oppenheim Awards. This award is given out by the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio which is an independent consumer review company run by a mother and daughter team with a background in child development. The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio not only gives out the Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Awards but also releases their reviews of all the toys they have judged. The award is broken down into developmental stages as well as categories. The Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Awards only judge toys that have been introduced by toy makers for the upcoming year.

Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Awards is judged by both adults and children. There are two rounds that determine the winners. The first round is done by a panel of Oppenheim experts who look at the quality and safety of a toy as well as the developmental appropriateness of a toy. If the toy passes the first round, it is then sent to the second round, which is tester families who then try the toy for several weeks. The toy is then rated by both the parents and the children.

All of the reviews are combined and the winners are determined. The results of the reviews are then published in the annual Oppenheim Toy Portfolio and are announced on the NBC's Today Show.

Dr. Toy Award
This awards is given out by the Dr. Toy website. Dr. Toy is actually Dr. Stevanne Auerbach, the director for Institute for Childhood Resources. The award is broken down into toy style categories with a Best of Best category. The Dr. Toy Awards judge toys that are submitted by toy manufacturers and are deemed suitable for possibly being a Dr. Toy Award winning toy.

Dr. Toy Award is judged by adults. If the toy is accepted to be judged, it is reviewed by members of the Institute for Childhood Resources and "Dr. Toy". The reviewers are looking for toys that will help develop a healthy play atmosphere for children.

The results are then re-reviewed and the final determination of who the winners are is made. The results are published on the Dr. Toy Website.

Great American Toy Test
This award is given out by KTVU, Channel 2 of San Francisco, CA. It is held annually. The award is broken down into toy style categories with a Best of Best category. The Great American Toy Test judges toys that are submitted by toy makers.

Great American Toy Test is judged by both children and adults. The toys are shipped to day-care and latchkey centers all over the United States where children play with the toys while being observed by their teachers and care takers. The toys are then reviewed by both children and adults for a wide range of standards including short- & long-term interest, quality and fun.

The results are combined and the results are announced on a KTVU news broadcast and published on the KTVU website.

T.O.T.Y. Award
T.O.T.Y. Award stands for, quite simply, the Toy of The Year Award. This award is given out by the Toy Industry Association. This award is broken down into toy style categories with a top award given to one toy. T.O.T.Y. Award judges all toys that are being sold in North America during that year's judging.

T.O.T.Y. Award is judged by adults. The adults are members of the Toy Industry Association. The toys can be nominated for final voting by either Toy Industry Association members without a fee or any non-member who is willing to pay the $50 nomination fee. The nominated toys are then voted on by all members of the Toy Industry Association.

The results of the final vote are tabulated and the winners are announced at the annual T.O.T.Y. Awards Ceremony, where the winners will be inducted into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame. The results are also published on the Toy Industry Association website.

The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval
The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval is given out by The National Parenting Center. The award is broken down into toy style categories and by developmental stages. The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval judges all toys that have been introduced by toy makers for the upcoming year that are submitted to The National Parenting Center.

The National Parenting Center Seal of Approval is judged by both adults and children at a testing facility run by The National Parenting Center. Toys are judged on gathered information, observation of play interaction and playing with the toy. The results are created from both statistical data from surveys about the toy and tester comments.

The final results are published by The National Parenting Center in both publications and on their website.


Now that you know a little more about how different toy awards are given and judged, you will be better able to choose which of these awards will help you choose the right toy for your child.

 

Author Bio
Heather Rhoades is a mother of three boys and owner of the OneOnFun website. To help you search for the right toy for your child, visit OneOnFun.com and the OneOnFun Toy Search Engine

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