Time Out for Self: Things One Can Still Enjoy Even Now that Children Are Here

Sometimes we think about the past and emotion comes over us.  We think about the good times and bad before the little ones arrived.  We remember falling in love, letting our guard down, and before long there is a baby, then another, a third, a fourth or for you, more!  Then when those free moments to catch our breath show up, sometimes we find ourselves doing for partners and children.  Yet, what might you have done differently before the little people showed up and what could you do now that they are here to make life better for you?

Prior to children, these were things that I should have taken advantage of, but didn't.

1.  Enjoy time alone.  It isn't necessary to fill one's free time with chatter.  Listen to the birds, enjoy a fresh breeze, look around you, and sit back and welcome quiet.  The temptation to want company can be so overwhelming that you prematurely let people in your life that were not meant to be.

2. Visit the places that interest you.  Making promises to self like, "One day I will visit..." but never do.  Now you wish to do those things.  Take the time to do what you really want to do.  The more you put off your needs, the more likely you will grow to resent everyone and anything that you feel keeps getting in the way of what you really want to do.

3.  Read a book, an article or blog (not related to self-help or family issues) daily.  Some people wish to start reading again, yet hated it after college because they read so much back then.  Find something that really interests you--search for something you always wanted to know but never bothered to because of all your studying in the past.  Too much self-help and family periodicals can make one feel burdened.

4.  Cherish time with family and friends.  Too often we say we are busy, but could we cut back on all the activity and just make a phone call we kept putting off, write a letter, send an email, or do something that just tells others, "I still care, you are in my thoughts and prayers."

5.  Treat your body to a fresh hairstyle, a nice addition to your wardrobe, exercise, proper eating while seeking out other ways to keep it running smoothly!  You may have ran around alot in the past without a care and now with children you are doing the same.

6.  Take up a hobby related to your dream.  Maybe you didn't become what you really wanted in life, but you don't have to give your dream up entirely.  Search for opportunities, lessons, and other things in your local area related to your dream and go visit!

These were the things that sometimes I think back and say to self, "When the urge was there to go and do, you should have!  When friends called to go out, you should have!  When people wanted to do nice things for you, you should have!  When you passed those cool stores, you should have went in!  When you were told to "Take it slow..." you should have!"  However, when these thoughts come to mind, I shut them down nowadays with, "I will..." then I make an effort to do.

Nicholl McGuire

5 Things You Should Do When Dropping a Child Off with Relatives/Friends

So grateful someone is willing to watch your child, that you forget to do certain things to ensure that your child is comfortable being watched by relatives. Failing to leave the sitter with adequate supplies is a turn-off for anyone watching your child even if they don't say so.  The likelihood that a family member will watch your child again is less likely, each time you "forgot...I was in a rush...I didn't have any money, so I thought you could..."

1.  Be sure all items such as diapers, pull-ups, special creams, medicines and whatever else a child uses daily is with him or her.  Never assume that the sitter is going to rush out and spend his or her money for your child's issues.

2.  Supply your child with enough toys, favorite dolls, and other things that typically entertain him or her at home while you are busy doing your personal things.  Your relative most likely doesn't want to have to entertain your child the whole visit.

3.  Check the weather and dress your child according to the weather. 

4.  Include change of clothes (outfit and underwear) in your packing, no matter the age.  Sometimes things come up and a child may have to stay over night.  They don't want to have to sleep in Grandma's old gown or Grandad's shrunken boxer shorts.

5.  Leave phone numbers and locations where you will be.  One of the frustrating things about watching one's children is when the parents are no where to be found.  Keep to your promise and stick to the time you will be back to pick up your children.

A little courtesy really does go a long way, you just never know when you will need your loved ones again!  Never assume that they will do anymore for you then they have already done.  Try hard not to take advantage.

Nicholl McGuire

Be Smart This Holiday Season - Plan Things Keeping Children in Mind

Some parents aren't thinking too much about children, believe it or not, during holiday seasons.  Rather they are more concerned about visiting loved ones, partying, and overall doing what they want to do.  When this happens, families have disputes and babies and children are left disturbed over what they have seen and heard between angry adults.  You might want to think about some things when holiday planning with children that just might keep you or someone else out of trouble this year.

1.  If it isn't necessary to go visiting or staying overnight at someone's home with children, don't.

Some babies and children are challenging to discipline.  When you know your child is a handful, it would make sense not to put him or her off on others.  The likelihood that someone, especially an older more experienced adult will say or do something that just might rub you the wrong way is probable.  Best to make sure your child and self are mentally, physically and sometimes spiritually ready for visiting relatives during the holidays. 

2.  Avoid the alcohol, drugs and anything else that alters one's mind when caring for children.

A sober mind is very necessary when parenting small children.  When relatives and friends notice that mom or dad just isn't caring for baby and children like they should, unnecessary drama between loved ones will occur.  If one is going to indulge in strong drink and other substances, do it away from children.

3.  Don't entrust anyone to care for your children like you--no matter the title or how long you have known the person or couple.

Sometimes while parents are out having a good time, a trusted relative and friend is doing some things that are questionable, immoral, and downright stomach-turning with children.  Don't be gullible, be watchful and never assume everyone will treat your child like you would no matter what they say.

4.  Avoid the temptation to do something that you know just might come back to haunt you this holiday season.

Sometimes relatives have unfinished business to settle.  The holidays just aren't the time to bring up the past.  Besides, parents won't get much accomplished with whining babies and toddlers with temper tantrums hanging around.  Sometimes angry parents will take their frustration out on their children in front of others.  If you know that being in the presence of certain people brings out the worst in you, avoid confrontation this time of year; otherwise, you just might have to deal with some issues in the future that you aren't ready for.

5.  Always keep your children's safety in mind from the toys they receive to where they play.

With so much activity going on, sometimes parents fail to exercise caution when allowing children to play in and around people and things.  Just because something looks cute and harmless doesn't mean that it is.  Don't put your children in a position that might cause harm to them emotionally or physically for the sake of a good laugh or some other reason.  Keep them safe!

Pondering on these thoughts and properly planning in advance will potentially help you and your child in the future.  Sometimes selfish behavior can cause a lifetime of upset, so be wise and do what's right in the best interest of you, your children and those around you!  Happy Holidays!

Nicholl McGuire author of When Mothers Cry.  See her blog here. 

7 Things Small Children Do that Irritate Most Adults

Anyone who has children most likely has a long list of stories where one’s child was acting mean-spirited to family, abusive to other children, and worse, destroyed various parts of the household. As sweet and innocent as small children appear to be, they need to be trained, trained and trained some more! Children require a lot of attention and time and when one knows that he or she has very little of either why bother having children or continue having children? Of course, there are those unexpected surprises, but one has nine months to get his or her business straight mentally and physically to ensure the well-being of one’s baby before he or she arrives.

For adults who are often busy with work, hobbies, or other things non-family related, parenting children will be a challenge. There will be those days that no one’s advice is going to work, you just have to go on one’s gut feeling, heavenly Father, or ride the rollercoaster of your child’s emotions. No easy way out!

Workplace responsibilities must be put on hold at times, so that a parent can take a child to his or her doctor’s appointment. Television watching will be interrupted when there is some yelling going on in the next room from sugar-hyped children. Events will be canceled when children are misbehaving so badly, that a parent feels like his or her head is going to pop off.

Sometimes bad times will far exceed good times and don’t let a naive, inexperienced, “I’m so in love with children” type tell you any differently. But we, parents, rebound from every challenge set before us, don‘t we? We find ways to get the peace we need after a storm. From popping a pill for a bad headache to taking a long walk or drive, we find ways to temporarily escape crazy moments until we can clear our minds. Moments are just moments they don’t last always! Storms don’t stick around, they eventually go away.

One thing, those of us who have been at parenting awhile will not do is, judge a person for wanting to leave family sometimes. Irritations pile up, and when they go beyond capacity that is when marriages fail, people walk out of homes, children are abused, spouses are mistreated, etc.

Whether one is traveling for the job, vacationing with the girls on a cruise, or hanging out with the fellows at a sporting event, we can’t blame you for wanting to protect your sanity. Maybe if more people knew how to get away from children, before taking out frustrations on a partner, abusing the family, or worse murdering them, there would be more lives spared.

So what are some of those things that frustrate some adults, more than others, and how might we get a handle on some of these issues?

1. Whining.

Most children whine because their needs are not being met. For example, Dad didn’t get the toy his son wanted. Mom didn’t pour juice in her daughter’s favorite cup. The driver of the car didn’t stop at a family restaurant to get Junior something to eat. So the children whine and whine and whine--no tears just annoying noise! A high pitch voice that is so irritating to the point that a parent who typically doesn’t yell will turn around and say, “Will you shut up!? Just shut the bleep up!” Sometimes all the whining was nothing more than a sleepy, hungry child. You have to stop and think, “When was the last time I took my child to the bathroom, gave him or her something to eat, and let my poor son or daughter take a nap peacefully?”

Solution: Always have goodies on hand and small toys in tote. Give your children a treat or toy that will distract them when you know you can’t meet their needs for the moment. When you have nothing, point out something interesting and begin to talk about it while rubbing the child’s shoulder. Sometimes a little tickling of one’s ribs or toes is a great distraction. Laughing is always better to listen to than whining!

2. Crying for long periods of time.

From a pain in a child’s ear to gas bubbles in a full belly, a child will cry and cry and cry. Something hurts! Maybe a favorite parent or relative left and the poor child can’t bear the separation. Whatever the case, soothe the child for as long as you can tolerate the crying. Babies can be held, toddlers can be walked, older children can be instructed to take deep breaths while they cry. The quick breathing exercise for older children will shorten the crying. Try different things to console children who are upset.

Solution: When you are at your wits end, remove yourself from the crying child. Place the child safely in a crib without anything in it or put your son or daughter in his or her room while you go somewhere in or around the home so that you can calm down. Sometimes calling a fellow parent and sharing your frustration can be a help.

3. Act out with parents and caretakers such as: hitting, biting, kicking, and spitting.

Children doing anything that hurts those who are watching them will make some adults very upset. A slap to the face, a kick to the shin, or a toy being hurled at one’s head is enough for a child to be punished. The toy is taken away, some parents will spank, and others will put children in time-out. When a child doesn’t get whatever he or she is asking for, most parents and teachers will isolate him or her from others. There are many things a parent can do to ensure that they are in control of the household and not the child who has only been on this planet for less than five years.

Solution: When a child is acting out this badly often, surely a parent should consider taking the child to a mental health doctor. It just isn’t typical of most children to want to fight adults. But if the children have been abused in some way, they will lash out terribly.

4. Touch things after repeated instructions not to.

How many times does a parent have to keep telling a child not to touch something? For as long as it takes for the child to learn that when mom and dad says, “No!” They mean, “No!”

Solution: No matter how frustrated you get, do the kinds of things that will show the child that it is wrong to touch certain things. So if you have to block a certain area of your home off, do it. Rearrange some things or pack up others until he or she is older, do it! If telling your child repeatedly not to do something is grating on your nerves, take a time out for yourself and plan how you are going to make the environment less stressful for you and your child. People who are stubborn and refuse to move anything or rid themselves of so much stuff decorating their homes are the ones who tend to get the most upset about curious children. Watch people like this, they might lose it.

5. Exaggerate an accident, tell false stories.

Children will say that a sibling, “…did this and that…” and cry their eyes out while telling you about it. But then you find out later, what had happened wasn’t as bad as the child made it sound.

Solution: Before jumping to conclusions, investigate. When you realize your child is the exaggerating type instruct him or her on sticking to the facts, by having them repeat the story and then you point out where he or she is not being accurate. Of course, you will have to explain in such a way that a child can comprehend what you are saying. Use visuals to help such as books that teach children why lying is wrong.

6. Avoid eating certain foods.

No matter what you say or do, when a child’s mind is made up on what he or she is going to eat--that’s the end of it. No amount of persuasive techniques will help in the long term. Sometimes you just might get a child to eat this thing and that thing in the short term, but old habits tend to return periodically. You can talk until you are blue in the face about how the child ate fruits and vegetables last week with no problem while you continuously put a spoon in his or her mouth, but when they don‘t want eat all of something or none at all, don’t force them. Otherwise, before long, you will have food everywhere and a red-faced child crying about “…not wanting it!” while you are tossing a dish or two in the sink screaming, “I give up!”

Solution: You might want to try cooking certain foods in a different way, buying alternatives, or using someone else in the family to coax your child into eating particular meals.

7. Fight with siblings.

This last irritation of many parents is one that will occur throughout childhood. Today brothers and sisters love one another, but tomorrow, not so much. Parents are called into bedrooms, living rooms, basements, and everywhere else because, “He hit me…She touched me…I hate her…He bit me…”

Solution: Stop allowing children to be in the same space playing with their toys and electronics for hours on end especially without parental supervision. Place them in separate areas of the residence for a time where they can play with favorite toys without watchful siblings and then rotate.

Parents who are easily frustrated and short-tempered are simply not the best teachers and one who recognizes this about a parent shouldn‘t leave children with this person especially for long periods of time. Selfish parents with various mental disorders are usually irritable when in the presence of children. Most can pick up on an adult’s tension. You will notice the change in your child’s behavior when he or she starts to act strangely around certain individuals--don’t ignore the signs! Many children know when they are not liked very much. This is why some will cry, fuss and whine if you should drop them off with troubled relatives.

When you know mom, dad or both can’t handle their children, say something, offer assistance, direct them to some help, and most of all (for those who have a faith) pray for them. Avoid leaving children with relatives and friends who have very little patience and time to watch them. Don’t bring children to events when you know that they are challenge to watch. Otherwise, you will only make others irritated with you and your misbehaving children.

If you know that your children are driving you up the wall, it is time to put yourself on vacation. Share your issues with those who can help you personally and professionally. Whatever you do, don’t take out your misery on a child who didn’t ask to be in this world. God bless.

Unusual Uses for Hydrogen Peroxide for Preppers!


Make Family Photobooks to Capture Precious Memories

When I first started this blog, I had a newborn, a toddler, a tween, and soon-to-be teenager at the time.  Then before I knew it they all grew up and fast!  Now I have two boys in school and two who will be out of high school in about four years! 

Lucky for me, I journaled my thoughts about the boys during the early years as soon as they would come to mind.  I also took much video and photos.  However, now that they are older, the digital images are sitting on CDs, portable drives, cameras, and elsewhere.  Thoughts are in notebooks and in document files.  With technology constantly changing, you will find yourself doing much transferring of images in an effort to save your photos and scanning and uploading to save heartfelt memoirs.  Don't put your photos, writings and videos off much longer, start getting them off of those devices and share them with others--mainly the children and grandparents--they would just love to see that stuff! 

Here are some places I have researched to create books (photo as well as traditional books).  Please note:  I don't get any gifts, incentives or coupons for mentioning them.  Feel free to view my work and join me at the following sites where applicable:

1.  Create Space - affordable, available to online stores once approved and published.

2.  Lulu - a variety of book sizes including pocket style!

3.  Smile Books - affordably priced, easy to use.

4.  Blog Booker - from blog to book

5.  Fast Pencil - write, design and share with others including stores too.

6.  Blog 2 Print - turn blog to professional book

7.  Bookemon - create your book online and change your blog into book as well.

8.  My Publisher - frequently offers discounts, coupons. New customers are eligible for free gift.

9.  Shutterfly - variety of ideas you can do with photos.

10.  Picaboo  - photobooks, holiday cards and more.

11.  Blurb - one of my personal favorites, but pricey.

For those who work from home...

Article Writing via Internet - What I Do...

 
Buy My Business Plan book by author Nicholl McGuire. Preview and learn more about this self-published Business book that helps you put your plan to paper step-by-step so that others will take you seriously.
 
Things You Don't Want to Do While Working from Home
 
Working from home is challenging enough, so you just don't want to do these things to cause more havoc to your already stressful life.

1. Over-eat, sleep or stay up late too much while neglecting your body. This only makes you often tired which will cause you not to want to stick with your business.

2. Avoid setting up space for children to roam. If you don't respect your office space, why should your children?

3. Take personal calls or surf the Internet while you are supposed to be working.

You will hinder your ideas and you will not be dedicated to your business with all the distractions.

4. Lie to yourself about being in business when you know you have done nothing for your business ie.) market, partner with others, edit your work, respond to email, return voice-mails, or plan things like an event, a campaign or something else business related.

5. Exaggerate your skills and services. So many entrepreneurs want to look like those businesses that have large marketing teams, employees, and more. You are in business for yourself, so don't say things about your products or services that potential customers can clearly see or possibly look up about you and your business. If you are the only person at work, but have the resources to help your client then say that. But if you make a claim that "my people" will get that done in 24 hours and don't fall through, you will have an angry client on your hands that just might bad mouth you on the Internet.

6. Pass information around that is unprofessional including offensive material on your social networking page. Potential clients view those pages and they get a good idea what kind of person you are based on what you post up. So if you are gay, white, happy, free, and have no children, yet you post things that talk negatively about women, married couples, blacks, and children, most likely you won't get any loyal customers. Sooner or later you will most likely anger some more people too.

7. Tell everyone you know that you will give them something free or discount your service because your competitor's prices are a little much. You may have yet to make a profit that will pay for all your nice gestures. It isn't difficult to figure out what happens when you offer freebies, undercut competition, and make promises that you may not be able to fulfill one day. You will be out of business.

Useful Sites You Will Want to Check

Business Ideas on a Budget - 10 Legitimate Businesses You Can Start for Under $20

Home Based Business Scams

Ripoff Report | Scams, reviews, complaints, lawsuits and frauds. File a report, post your review.


Nicholl McGuire

Thinking About Adding a Dog to Your Household?

With a mixed age group family whose inexperienced when it comes to caring for a pet, you might want to learn as much as you can about the dog breed you are interested in and not only that, stay away from certain types that just don't make good pets the first time around.

Learn more here.

Popular Stores to Purchase Boy Toddler and Tween Clothing on Clearance

Clearance boys clothing at the following stores:

Kohls

Target

Kmart

Old Navy

Walmart

Note: Links send you directly to clearance rack!  Saves time!  Stop by often to see what's on sale.  Thank me by purchasing my book When Mothers Cry (whenmotherscry.blogspot.com)

3 Popular Sites for Baby Names

Whether you are expecting or simply curious about your children's names, there are some very good sites that can give you information about baby names.  Check out the following:

1.  BabyNames.com - on this site you will view the baby name of the day, celebrity baby news, trending names, and get some ideas on naming your child based on languages from around the world.

2.  BabyNamesFinder - provides tips for picking out a baby name using inspiration lists.  Also, you can find out which are the top baby names at this moment.

3.  Babyzone - this site gives over 20,000 baby names.  It also gives meaning, origin and more.


6 Tips that Will Help Children Deal with Separation/Divorce

If you plan on separating from a partner or divorcing him or her, you may want to say and do some things that will alleviate at least some of the stress that children will experience as a result of not having a parent around anymore.

One.  Remind your children that they will see their mother or father again.  If possible, give them photos of mom or dad, show pictures of new home, familiar faces, neighborhood, etc.  Explain to them they are getting more of everything like two houses, two holiday celebrations, more toys etc.

Two.  Ask about how they feel and encourage them to keep talking while you listen.  Avoid the temptation to interrupt.

Three.  Be firm when it comes to establishing rules and getting children to adhere to them.  As much as you will want to be that nice, friendly, sweet parent, you also don't want to be used and abused by children either.

Four.  Communicate with partner about issues related to the children such as:  who will be babysitting them, what they are eating, school challenges, etc.  Keep away from conversations that have nothing to do with children.  It might seem difficult at first, but with practice and constant self-talk, you will find yourself not caring about your exes personal life or what he or she thinks about yours--unless of course what you both say/do affects the children.

Five.   Move on!  Don't let relatives, in-laws, and others dictate how you are suppose to live your life with or without your children.  Some will talk about "If I were you...and you shouldn't let...and what about the kids..." If any of these phrases and more are followed by so-called advice that doesn't help you raise children, positively add to your relationship with an exe, or better your lifestyle, ignore it.  If you have a faith, now might be a good time to consult your heavenly Father, because you will face opposition as you draw further away from your exe.

Six.  Encourage your children to visit relatives (on both sides) and others who have been supportive while you were married and assisted you with children.  If this is not possible, have children call or write family members.  This way you are letting all parties know you are not turning your children against loved ones, but if you are shutting out your in-laws even when they haven't acted ill toward your children, you are becoming a problem rather than a solution.  You never know when you might need these individuals, so keep the lines of communication open.

Nicholl McGuire is the author of When Mothers Cry and other books.

New Parents, Young Mothers: When Parenting Isn't What It is Cracked Up to Be

If you ever wanted to share how you really felt about being a parent, then you just might want to get Nicholl McGuire's book, When Mothers Cry.  It is packed with insightful information on a variety of issues related to motherhood--some you know about and others you have yet to experience.  It may not be wise or right to come out with everything that is on your mind right now about parenting.  People have a way of taking what you say and do when it comes to babies and children and using it against you.  In When Mothers Cry, Nicholl shares some of her experiences and how she was at times emotionally uplifted and other times negatively impacted due to a lack of support, finances, and the like when it came to her four children, work, spirituality, and relationships.

Sometimes you will find that people who mean you well either forgot what it was like when they started out as a parent, avoid rehashing the past, or simply don't care too much about parenting, because they are in a different place now in their lives.  Some will even chalk most things up with phrases like, "It is what it is...To each his own...I mind my own business."  Maybe that is not what you want to hear.  Maybe you are on the verge of losing it!  Maybe you, dare I say it, resent being a parent and wish that you had made a different decision. 

Wherever you are in life and whatever you feel, know that it is very common to have a variety of emotions when caring for a crying infant, arguing with an irritating mate, and trying to be a friend to everyone else.

Get When Mothers Cry today and hopefully you will utilize some of the material to help you keep fighting the good fight for the sake of your family and most of all for your own personal well-being!

Women: a biblical study/commentary on Rebekah

Sometimes the one true God has a funny way of showing yourself or others in the Bible.  Watch as well as pray.  Find someone in the Bible with whom you can relate.  http://youtu.be/di8IhqjqmEg

To Prevent Kids' Food Allergies, Start Peanuts, Eggs Sooner | Yahoo! Health

If you ever wondered why nowadays children have so many allergies to foods that weren't an issue many years back, here's why....FYI introduce your babies to certain solids early to prevent future food allergies.  Learn more below:

To Prevent Kids' Food Allergies, Start Peanuts, Eggs Sooner | Yahoo! Health

Poem: Time is Love

Small boy walks, grows up talks.
"Mama look and see,I can write a three."

"Go play dear!" Boy wipes a tear.

Small girl cries, dad always lies.
"I'll make time, here take this dime."

"I don't want it, sit here a bit."

"No not now, I'll make a vow.
You go play, I'll be back your way."

Small boy walks, grows up talks.
"Things to do, no time for you."

Small girl cries, dad always lies!
"Have no time, busy making a dime."

A picture of a dove, no time to love.

Nicholl McGuire 

Note:  Don't let time pass with your children pass you by.  Be pro-active in your child's life.  This doesn't mean stop living yours, but choose your time wisely, because they grow so fast.

They Will Cry and You Will Scream - Children

How long does the crying and bickering last or the arguing and shoving from older ones?  Years, my friend, years!  Unless something life-changing happens and even then sons and daughters will probably be old men and women cursing about some past issue from childhood.  So you might as well continue to play mediator and avoid the temptation to play favorites because there is nothing so special about any child that we need to put them on pedestals like statues.

I had been up in arms about the latest fighting match where the little one slapped the bigger one first. I had made it my business not to handle things in the most caring, nicest, and sweetest way this time (yeah there were many other similar events that weekend).  What I did was what many of you parents, who are already at your wits end about other matters that need your attention, you yell right along with them!

"Get your...You know what if you...What are you thinking...?"  The boys are crying and I am ready to pack them up and send them anywhere just so long as they are out of my presence!  But then I got wise quickly, I decided what they needed was space and plenty of it! 

"You go in that room with your toys and you go in that one!  You have 20 seconds to get what you want and stop being in the same room with your brother!"  Sometimes what you are use to calling a living room, guest room, or dining room has to become one of your children's playroom especially if they share a room.  "Now I expect quiet and if I don't get it, I am taking my white garbage bag and I am going to start collecting toys to give away to those kids who will appreciate them!"  They got quiet, real quiet.  You could almost here them thinking, "Give my toys to some kids, this woman has lost her mind!  I better do what she says!" 

When I looked up at the clock, far too much time had passed of Fric and Frac playing together.  It was hours of togetherness.  Too much for even adults living together would want to spend in the same room.  As parents, we abuse statements like, "Go play...Play with your brother...Play together!"  Now how long is playing together suppose to last peacefully?

I have been reminding myself lately to make time and space for my children to play alone, work alone, create alone, and do whatever else you tell them ALONE, because if you don't, you will sound like this, "Leave me alone!  Didn't I tell you...Stop hitting your brother!  Why can't you guys get along?  If I have to tell you again...I mean it this time, go play!  Stop bothering me!"

Nicholl McGuire is the author of When Mothers Cry

Parents: Children are Watching You

Sons and daughters grow up to see parents for who they really are. Your little babies may love you today, but one day might become older and despise you. This is a harsh reality, but so true. Think about all the elderly people in nursing homes forgotten, not because their children are so heartless, but because the parent in his or her youth was not a good person to be around, and for many, they never changed. So think twice, before you judge someone for not visiting mom, dad, or grandparents.

As parents we can very easily say one day as rebellious children grow older, “All I did for you, and the nerve of you to treat you me this way!” But children get wise to parents. They begin to witness how mom treats her mom and how dad treats his wife and then they start thinking about how they have been treated or mistreated and so they become distant. They also learn that parents aren't always truthful, don't love neighbors, sometimes steal or cheat, and kill others whether mentally or physically or personally or professionally. When a son or daughter becomes aware of a cold-hearted, sinful parent, he or she doesn't want too much to do with him or her once the child realizes that he or she has options—walk right and treat others fairly and with respect and work toward becoming a better individual or act like your wicked parents and reap the consequences.

We falsely assume that because we had children that some day they will want to connect with us. We hope that they will want to be a part of our lives, take care of us when we are older, and actually like being around us. But this doesn't always happen for all parents. Think about how you might be treating your older parents and relatives. “Sorry, I am busy...I know it has been awhile since I last visited, but you know...” says the busy daughter or son. One day you might be that elderly parent hoping that someone will call or stop by your home.

Now for some mean-spirited adults, they will not experience the kind of love and respect from children like others simply because they don't give it out. For some parents, children are a burden and they treat them as such. They don't bother to nurture them. They rarely teach them instead they leave it up to the school. Some parents spend far too much time scolding than holding. So when the child grows older, he or she isn't interested in having a relationship with so-called dear ole' mom and dad. If a child doesn't see a good example of a loving a relationship between parents and his or herself in a parent's energetic days, then he or she most likely will not know how to demonstrate a healthy relationship with the parents or others. Think about what example you are giving your children now and how might it be conveyed to you once you are older.

Do keep in mind that children observe you—they want to know if you are really as nice, loving, and kind as you appear to be (that is when times are good, but when times are bad, uh oh!) Sons and daughters want to experience a positive relationship with parents. They will test you of course, but it is how you react to their tests that makes a difference.

God bless.

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