Tag Archives: Single Mom

7 Proven Parenting Tips

7 proven Parenting Tips

7 proven Parenting Tips

The toughest job… takes courage and strength

The most rewarding job… full of joy and sorrow

On-the-job training… once you think you have it figured out; things change

No instruction manuals… never know what to do

What is your goal as a parent?

Mine is, and always has been, to raise independent, responsible, young men.

I love being a mother. I would have been content living the life of June Cleaver, but I was blessed with the life of Christi Weems; mom of Garrett and Austin Weems. Garrett is the child who always challenged me and felt as though rules were to be broken. Did I mention Garrett is a ginger? Austin is my obedient child who speaks very little, but when he does, he speaks with wisdom and humor.  We have had our peaks and valleys and I have made plenty of bad decisions. I felt as though I should share some methods that have been proven to effective over the years.

  • Allow them to be who they are; not who you want them to be.

The hardest lesson that must be learned as a parent. This one took me years to figure out and caused a lot of heartache in our home. All I ever wanted to be was “football mom” and I was granted the experience for one high school season. Football was not the boys’ passion; it was mine. I had to let it go and let them be themselves. Garrett found his passion with electronics and graphic design. He began his graphic design career at the age of sixteen and opened his own company at seventeen. Austin is a freshman in high school and has yet to find his passion. Recently, he built his own gaming computer. It may be safe to say that gaming is in his future.

  • Live by example.

I cannot expect the boys to do something that I wouldn’t do myself.  I have always worked hard, treated people kindly, and lived with integrity which is exactly what I expect from them. I am raising boys to be men without a male role model. It is important to me for them to have good manners. I will stop at a door and wait for them to open it for me. I explain to them that a woman wants to date a gentleman and gentlemen have manners.

  • Use your words to build them up; not tear them down.

The world is tough enough on children without parents breaking them down at home. Each day, I tell the boys, “You are a champion. I am proud of you. Make good choices.” I place inspirational notes in their lunches periodically. My heart crushes when I hear a parent call their child, “stupid” even if they’re only joking. Those words linger in your child’s head and heart for years.

  • Be hard on them.

The price they pay as children and teenagers is much less than what they’ll pay as adults in society. Any time I received calls from teachers or administrators my response was always, “Be harder on my child than you would be any others.” When Garrett was making bad choices in high school, the assistant principal worked with me to create harsh consequences for his actions. After he suffered the consequences, he straightened up and I did not have any more problems. When they were toddlers, I carried a wooden spoon in my purse; I was never afraid to use it. As they got older, I learned a special pinch on their arm did the trick. Spanking your children may be against your beliefs, but I know it worked for mine.

  • Allow them to fail.

This is heartbreaking to watch, but it is necessary to happen. Garrett did not have a good relationship with one of his Spanish teachers. Garrett has never understood the concept of respecting your elders. In his eyes, you had to earn his respect despite your age. He did not respect her for reasons unknown. After multiple emails, phone calls, and conferences, I realized this was a life lesson for Garrett.  It was tough for me to see him fail, as a teacher, I cringed. I hate seeing students who are fully capable not succeed solely because they are not willing to work. I emailed the teacher the following, “Garrett is a young adult and has to learn from his actions.  I cannot sweep in and do this for him. He has to face the consequences of his actions.” He failed Spanish and had to repeat it the following year. The learning lesson took place about a year later. The first semester he was out of a school an hour early each day, but the second semester he had to stay the extra hour each day to retake Spanish.

  • Give them responsibilities.

We divide all the chores in the house by three and we each do our own part. I cannot do it all on my own and they have to understand what it takes to manage a household. If one of us doesn’t do our part, the house cannot function smoothly. They each do their own laundry. I’m not saying they always do things perfectly or the way I would do it, however,  if I don’t allow them to do things, the will not learn. It’s okay if the towels aren’t folded perfect. I allow them to cook, but I probably should be teaching them cooking skills more regularly. Culinary techniques are not my specialty; therefore, this is an area we could all use some improvement. I also sit down with them to discuss the monthly budget. Often times, they would rewash a load of laundry instead of folding the clothes and putting them away (which infuriated me.) After we discussed the electricity and water bill, this routine concluded.

  • Love Unconditionally.

Love unconditionally is affection without any conditions. Do your children know you love them without any conditions?   Your children must know they are loved despite their behaviors. We create their safe haven by the love we provide.

Raising boys to be men without a man around has been a tough, but rewarding journey.  I am proud of the men my boys have become. Parenting is my favorite job and I have made my share of mistakes. Punishing your children and telling them no may be painful at the moment, but prevents future pain.  My boys are not perfect and they are still learning but they make my life complete. I hope this encourages you to speak words of encouragement to your children today! Believe in yourself because you are doing a great job!!

Fast Dating Dating Fast

Fast Dating Dating Fast

Living in the fast lane with multiple dates throughout the week, phone blowing up with text messages, and several opportunities for non-martial sex led me to a 16 month dating fast (not dating at all) where I spent time learning to love myself and not dating at all.  I learned so much during this time.

The desire to be loved can lead to self destruction.  I have been in multiple relationships sacrificing me, my family, my faith; only to lead to a broken heart and a stress on my family’s budget. It does not pay to constantly be on the prowl or to try to create something that is not reciprocated.

FAST DATING involves:

1. Heart Break

2. Drama

3. Baggage not exposed until too late

FAST DATING and What I did wrong :

I chased him.

I created situations.

I invited.

I gave all.

I rowed the boat.

I suffocated him.

I thought being nice and giving all would make him want me, but it pushed him away.

FAST DATING bottom line:

If a man wants a woman, NOTHING will keep him away. Sex, gifts, and service will lure him for only a short time.

When I finally took a DATING FAST (meaning I took a break from dating), I could see things a little more clearly, but my heart still ached. We can all have a relationship, but at what price? Are you willing to compromise for abuse, alcohol, infidelity, or other things?

We are all broken with baggage, but baggage are you willing to carry for someone else? We attract what people with same baggage or issues as ourselves.  For example, I have abandonment issues.  Therefore, I attract men with commitment issues.  If you don’t commit to me, you cannot abandon me… RIGHT?? I have a viscous cycle because what I want is a healthy, committed relationship, but my issues are preventing me from having what I want most.  SOOOOOOOOOOOO… what do I do????

Make me better!! The better I am the better prepared I will be for a healthy relationship.  I have survived domestic violence and will not enter another situation like that one again.

Fast Dating Dating Fast

Fast Dating Dating Fast

The most important thing we can do for ourselves is love ourselves. Take time to date yourself, learn you, focus on you, try new things, embrace the time and enjoy the journey. Loving yourself begins with God’s love and acceptance.

DATING FAST involves:

1. Focus on God

2. Prayer

3. Healing

Fast Dating Dating Fast

Fast Dating Dating Fast

Worst Date Dating Experiences

Do you have a dating story regarding your “worst date?”

I met Larry (“worst date” name changed to protect the innocent)  through a mutual friend.  He asked Sandra for my phone number and invited me to see “The Blue Man Group.”

I had not seen the Blue Man Group and didn’t have any desire to see the group, but was interested in the hype of the group.

I agreed and we decided to meet at the Galleria Mall since we lived in different parts of the metroplex.  I meet him at the mall and he walked me to his car to leave for the Blue Man Group.

I walked up to the wrong car which was a smaller car and he directed me to the correct car which was a Crown Victoria with lambskin seat belt covers where he opened the door for me which was very nice.

We arrived at the theater early and had a drink in the lobby where he preceded to tell me he about all his ailments,injuries, and prescriptions. I don’t remember all of the details, but he had numerous surgeries and took multiple medications.  Each side effect of one medication led to another medication.  I honestly don’t know how I did not fall asleep.  I don’t take any medication and take all measures to stay healthy.   The biggest kicker is that  he lived with his mother. Don’t get me wrong… I understand the stage of life when you are the caregiver of your parents.  I think he helped his mother, but I don’t think he was at the role reversal stage of life yet. He did not work and had not worked in years.  He was a nice guy, but not the guy for me.

Would you date a man in his 40s who lives with his mother?

 

The theater opened and we could be seated.  The seats were amazing with appetizers and wine. We were seated and he left to treat himself to the appetizers and wine. “Worst date” did not bring me back anything.  At this point, I could not wait to get home. The show was good and he wanted to go to dinner after Blue Man Group performance.  I just wanted to get away! He returned me to my car at the mall and asked to see me again. I did not agree to a second “worst date” and have not seen him again.