Coming together is a beginning, keeping together is progress, working together is success. — Henry Ford
I’ve been away for a while!
A little healthy competition between kids is never a bad thing – but how do you keep the competition “healthy”? How do you keep it in check? Tonight my kids were discussing an email that one of their lacrosse coaches sent. The email was recognizing my daughter for playing goalie by suggesting that she was following in her big brother’s footsteps. Of course, it was a compliment to both kids. How do I make sure they both see the positive related to not only themselves, but also each other?
I hope that we are teaching all of our children to be happy for one another, to celebrate the successes they each have – small or large. We toast to happy occasions and we congratulate for accomplishments. I hope that they keep these lessons top of mind as they mature!
If my mom were a tree she would be an oak. She’s strong, beautiful, and healthy.
If my mom were a dessert she would be vanilla ice cream with chocolate syrup and a cherry. She’s sweet, classic, but still pleases everybody.
If my mom were a chef she would be Rachel Ray. She’s amazing, always gets the job done, and very creative.
If my mom were a coffee she would be a grande non-fat no whip mocha. She’s energetic, sweet and loves Starbucks.
If my mom were a fruit she would be an apple. She’s healthy, sweet, and bright.
If my mom had 5 kids and a husband named Russell she would be my amazing mom.
Happy Mother’s Day!
My daughter wrote this for me in 2014. It touches my heart in so many ways.
Happy Mother’s Day to all of the moms and step-moms out there!!
There are a lot of emotions that come up in a blended family on Mother’s Day. Every family has different circumstances that influence the relationship and resulting emotions that occur on Mother’s Day. In our blended family the children all have an active, involved mother. My children have me, Russell’s children have their mother. All of the kids get to see their moms consistently. I can only write about my feelings and beliefs regarding being a step-mother to children that have an involved mom. In addition, I do not live with my step-children on a regular basis (because Russell and I live in separate states and spend our weekends together, we do not regularly parent one another’s children).
I have no expectations that my step-children acknowledge me in any way on Mother’s Day. One is for a practical reason, they are typically with their mother, not me, on Mother’s Day. The other is because I AM NOT THEIR MOTHER! In a situation where a child has a mother that is fully capable, I do not think it is necessary that the step-children identify a necessity to celebrate Mother’s Day with their step-mother. Please do not get me wrong here… I am not suggesting that step-children don’t do things like: treat their step-mother with respect and acknowledge their step-mother is a part of their life; working within the family dynamics to try to develop some formidable relationship.
One might ask if I think Russell should enable or aid his children in acknowledging me on Mother’s Day – buying me a card from them, sending flowers from them, etc. I have no expectation for this; from him or the children.
Where does the husband of a mother come into play on Mother’s Day? – this is where I do see Russell’s role – with my children! I hope that Russell will help, remind, enable my children to get me a card, make me breakfast in bed, remember to say “Happy Mother’s Day”. I also believe my ex-husband has a role in reminding the children about Mother’s Day. Before I met Russell, before I was re-married, the ex-husband’s role was even more important – nothing extravagant expected but acknowledgement of an important day in their mother’s life is important – it’s about respect, it’s about teaching our children how to love, teaching them about relationships, teaching them about treating people the right way.
In blended families, step-families, whatever you want to call them… it is about doing the right thing: Recognizing Mother’s Day IS the right thing to do for your children’s mother.
Happy Mother’s Day!!
I asked my 14yo son what I should write about for today’s Tuesday Tip… he said he didn’t know. Then he said “I wish I was the youngest”… “then I could hit people when we play basketball together and get away with it instead of you guys getting mad at me”.
I’ve written about birth order before – how it affects the dynamics in a family. I believe in birth order dynamics.
I don’t believe they tell you how a kid will grow into an adult, but I do believe the dynamics mold children if we, as parents, aren’t aware of what is happening with our children’s relationships.
In any family, and especially in a blended family, be aware of birth order dynamics. The children live with them every day!
I am always looking for ways to create memories for our blended family. How do we keep five kids with busy schedules, different interests, and limited time together connected to one another?
One way is our favorite family recipes… things we’ve been baking or creating together for years. We make these foods on vacations together or for our special celebrations.
The first creation we ever made was “K-B Mud Pie”. This yummy summer treat is an ice cream pie we created on our first Lucky Seven Family trip to Cape Cod.
K-B Mud Pie:
oreo cookie pie crust (make your own for more fun! let the kids crush the oreos with a ziploc bag and mallet!)
your family’s favorite ice cream
whipped cream (one of our kids is a pro at making homemade whipped cream – much better than the canned stuff!)
Fill your pie crust with ice cream, decorate with chocolate syrup and freeze. Cover with whipped cream when ready to serve.
Enjoy your family’s creation and savor the memories you are making!!
Getting hung up on frustrating issues in a blended family is often easy. There are lots of difficult issues that you can focus on. If you live your life allowing every little thing to be problematic you are wasting precious moments. Take the time to decide what is worth your focus. What are the one or two key issues that are eating away at you? Hone in on the most important item… the one that puts your relationship at risk. Spend time with your partner on that issue and try to let the smaller ones fall away. It will be good for you and good for your blended family.