Lucky Seven Family

Tag Archives: Traditions

HELPING EVERYONE TO BE HEARD

Family BreakfastWith five kids, different personalities certainly affect the conversations we have when we are all together.  We have the older two (one girl, one boy) that are very strong characters – they make themselves heard.  We have the younger ones (one boy and two girls) that are strong in their own ways but certainly have their big sister and brother to try to be louder than when a conversation is on-going.  It is interesting to observe the behaviors and how one child will interrupt and the response it gets from another child.   Sometimes they just all keep talking, none hearing the other! Sometimes, one bows to the interrupter, other times they stand strong and call each other out for the interruption!  As parents and step-parents, it is important for us to help make sure each child feels that their voice is heard; at the same time, we also have to let the children form their own social rules just as would happen at school or some other group event.  Finding a balance of stepping in occasionally but not always policing the conversation is critical to the children growing together as siblings and step-siblings.

Our family dinners have played a critical role in the successful blending of our family.  We started a tradition early on of “Where do you see  yourself in XX years?  Sometimes it is 5 years, other times 10 years, etc.  Each child (and parent!) takes their turn at saying where they will, what they will be doing, etc.   This allows each child the opportunity to speak without interruption.  It is also great fun to hear where they aspire to be – college plans, career plans, silly plans!  We have been doing this for more than 5 years – hearing how these aspirations change over time is also fun for us as parents.  You see your children maturing in their thoughts and maturing in their ability to communicate and respect others.

Try “Where do you see yourself…” with your blended family today!

Tuesday Tip #1

Build traditions that carry from year to year with your blended family — making Christmas cookies together as a family is one of our favorites!