Archive for November 2010

Setting the Tone- Loving Boundaries

November 18, 2010

Hmm.

It’s been a while since our kids were small- they are now 18, 22 and 23.

It’s been a while since I negotiated tv preferences, homework time, how clean one’s plate had to be to be eligible for dessert, and when the bedtime was to be…

Our first two were 18 months apart.  I have vague uncomfortable memories of a lot of bickering and tussling.  One of them was a  biter.  One of them was a real boss and directed the activity in the house.  When they youngest came along, she had siblings aged 4 and 5.  It was an active household. 

I do remember saying “Because I said so,” a REAL lot. 

Sometimes, the best negotiations are NO negotiations.

As parents, I believe that our children  look to us to set the boundaries and to give some structure to their lives.  Not hard inflexible ironclad rules…. but loving boundaries.    It seems to go smoother when there are some guidelines and not everything is up for grabs.  That’s why the monks that I know love their lives in the monastery.  They say that in the rigidity of the rules… there is HUGE freedom.  They do not need to choose clothing or chores or prayer times or work… others do that for them ( or they sign onto a community Rule of Life) and then they have  more freedom to move within the boundaries.

WHAT LOVING BOUNDARIES HAVE YOU SET FOR YOUR KIDS IN YOUR HOME?

Please comment.  Your answers may be a blessing for another.

Love,

Audrey

Advertisements

Following Up On The Joseph Story: Family Dynamics

November 8, 2010

I was sitting next to a friend at a large dinner party this week- you know, the kind of party where it is impossible to have one conversation around the table and so the talk turns to smaller exchanges with one’s neighbor (known as ‘dinner partners’ in my mother’s day)…  We were having nice chat … but this friend was somewhat apologetic  as she shared the ups and downs of family life as she knew it.  I laughed and told her that, in my estimation, every family (most certainly including mine) was a little ….weird… and that, in my profession, I had yet to meet someone who did not have their own ‘story.’

The first book of the Bible- Genesis- gives us a lot of stories about families, for better or worse. 

The story of Joseph is fraught with discord from the get-go… but ends in a wonderful gesture of mercy, compassion and love.

And so, the QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION for our blog this time are about families:

How do we as parents set the tone for our household?

How do we negotiate sibling issues, including sibling rivalry?

How do we manage to give eacn child the attention that he or she needs… especially when one child’s needs might be so much more evident or immediate than another’s?

And THEN… how do we re-charge ourselves at the end of the day and get ready for the NEXT day?

There are a lot of wonderful opportunities for conversation here-  won’t you please share your ideas? 

WHAT YOU HAVE TO SAY MIGHT BE A BLESSING FOR ANOTHER.

Thanks in advance for your participation.

Audrey