Monday, November 26, 2007

For Parents Only

First of all, watch this video. It tells the story of Patrick Henry Hughes, a young man who was born without eyes and crippled. But he didn't let his disabilities get him down. He has accomplished more than many people twice his age, and his attitude on life is terrific. He and his father are two of my new heroes. After watching this, you'll see that all the reasons we give for not succeeding in life are just excuses, and poor ones at that.

This weekend Jesse and Doogie turned our basement into a rec room. They moved the computer down there and set it up well. It's become the new living room with two TVs, one for television, the other for videos and games, two game systems, computer, keyboard, plush rocker, etc, etc. Doogie keeps trying to chase us all out so he can claim it as his own. It's really given us a lot more room in our little house. Jesse needed a place where he could work on his homework uninterrupted (impossibly upstairs), and he's made quite a bit of progress this weekend. Only a couple more weeks to earn his associate's degree. I like the new set up. I can blog while Mia watches movies right next to me (Ice Age), and the laundry is going as well.

For Parents Only by Shaunti Feldhahn & Lisa A. Rice is a Christian resource for parents of teenagers. The two conducted lots of research online and in person and gathered data from over 1000 teenagers about what they want and need from their parents. The results are both surprising and expected. They take the data, combine it with Scripture and real anecdotes to give simple, down-to-earth advice on how to be the best parent you can be. What really sets this book apart from other parenting guides, is the comments from teens. There are no great psychological breakthroughs or studies, just real information you can use. As a mother of two teens myself (pray for me!), I found a lot of great info here. Often our kids just want to vent to us and for us to acknowledge their feelings about something without offering judgment or advice. I occasionally ask my daughter when she's ranting if she just needs me to listen or wants my take on the situation. It gives her the opportunity to let me know what she needs, and allows me to listen fully without thinking of my response. The book also taught me the need to be calm even when the kids are dropping bombs. If I do that, they know they can trust me in the future. This is a fantastic parenting guide, short and sweet.

I'm giving away two copies of this book this week. All you need to do to enter is send me an email to clockstein at replace the at with an @ of course, I'm avoiding the spambots. This is a great read for parents of teens, and if you don't have any teens yourself, it would make a wonderful Christmas present. I'll accept entries all week until midnight Friday. The drawing will be held on Saturday, and the winner announced Monday. Good luck!