Wednesday

Better Dad than Partner?


Give it some time, he just might turn out to be a good dad.


When you're in doubt about that guy who suddenly doesn't
seem like you and he will make a great pair, now a baby is on the way.

When Mothers Cry
by Nicholl McGuire

Thursday

10 Things Childcare Providers Could Do For Parents

Thinking about running your own daycare business from home?  It’s a great idea and will be successful for you when you know what you are doing.  Too often parents visit a daycare with the hopes of registering their child, only to find out the daycare center or home daycare is not what they planned. 

Parents have complained of daycare facilities and home daycares being unclean and smelly.  Children being fed a diet of sugary snacks between meals and in some cases didn’t bother to feed the children a meal when they asked “because the parents would be coming to get them soon.”  Lazy workers were uninterested in teaching the children as promised.  Older children (in home daycares) were allowed to interact with toddlers and babies (and in some cases bullied them.) 

Without proper planning when running a daycare, childcare providers may lose business or worse encounter lawsuits, so know your business and know your parent’s needs.  The following list is comprised of some things you can do to ensure your daycare is up to par.

One.  Provide the daycare’s license number without the parents having to ask.

Two.  Upon signing up, all updated daycare policies should be provided to parents including exactly how much your rates are without any sudden changes verbally.

Three.  Have receipts prepared before we get there.

Four.  Be sure the environment is clean.

Five.  Change babies’ diapers often.

Six.  Provide healthy snacks like they claim they do (cookies, candies, and cakes served before the parents pick them up are loaded with sugar and add to behavioral issues).

Seven.  Show and tell parents what their children did during the day besides the negative reports.

Eight.  When telling parents about any negative acts the children did, include what you did to discipline them.

Nine.  Document the children’s day what they ate, participated in, whether they were ill, etc. then give parents a copy.

Ten.  Notify parents in advance about anyone new who will be working with their children.

Share this article with childcare providers and hopefully your voice Mom will be heard.  In order to have a quality daycare business, one has to consider the feedback from others.  All four of my boys have been in childcare, although older now, I didn't forget the good care they received as well as the not-so good care.  Daycare memories can last a lifetime for children, so do think of this when dropping children off with caretakers.

Nicholl McGuire is the author of When Mothers Cry now available at Barnes & Noble.  She also maintains this blog, so do reach out for advertising space or blog sponsored posts.

When Mothers Cry - motherhood challenges, books, parents, new mothers

Wednesday

Are You A Strict Parent?


 How to know whether your child will one day shame you.

Today you will brag to friends and family about how well mannered, smart, and wonderful your child is to you and everyone who knows him or her.  However, tomorrow just may be a different story.

Children grow up and move on with their lives with or without their parents.  You may have a ticking time bomb under your roof that can’t wait to explode and move on without you.  How do you know if you are being too strict and if your child may one day shame the family name?

Remember how you were raised?  If you had parents who just didn’t seem to care, then you may want to be sure that you are not like them, but you may be overdoing it.  However, if you had parents who treated you like you were a soldier and they were the generals, you may be repeating their behaviors with your own child.

Ask yourself the following questions and make the necessary changes in how you parent before it is too late.

Am I angry a lot?  You may be stressed about work, money, your spouse, family, friends or your health.  Your child may be receiving a lot of this anger.  It’s time to determine if these areas of your life can be changed. 

My child seems to be acting different lately, what is his or her problem?  Once you have determined what is the root cause of your anger, then examine if there is something your child is or is not doing that could make life better at home.  Maybe he or she is doing well in school, but angry with you for some reason.  Your son or daughter may be struggling with a health problem that you may not be aware.  Communicate with your child and find out if there are any problems he or she is having that you need to help him or her fix.

When I discipline my child is it really working?  Physically hitting your child for letter grades, a dish that falls to the floor, or because you are too impatient to assist him or her with homework are not contributing to his or her success.  Instead, you are building up resentment within him or her.  Be prepared for your child to one day look for love in all the wrong places, bad mouth you to family and friends, avoid coming around you, and act out in rebellious ways such as getting in trouble with the law. 

What kind of environment am I creating for my child?  You know your environment better than anyone else, because you live there.  A clean, spacious, well-kept home is one that any child can physically thrive in when he or she knows where to find his her belongings and doesn’t have to be concerned with insects invading his or her bed at night.  Yet, with all the cleanliness is there room for he or she to make mistakes?  Can she leave the milk out on the countertop without being yelled at and called every name but the one you have given her?  Will your son be allowed to leave muddy shoes near the front door without worrying whether you will yank him by the arm and throw him up against a wall?  Give them the opportunities to correct their mistakes while increasing future penalties each time they forget.  (Isn’t that what courts do each time one breaks the law?)

Does your child appear to be afraid to speak with you?  Some children will actually urinate on themselves when trying to explain to their parents why they broke mom’s vase for fear that they will be punished.  Is this the kind of fear your child has toward you?  Maybe it is a different kind of fear, the kind that runs and hides when you call them.  Start putting a smile on your face, changing your tone of voice, and sitting down with your hands to yourself while you listen to them explain themselves.  The key here is to be approachable. 

Does your child often find any excuse to avoid sitting in the same room with you?  The resentment may have already taken root within your child.  Do you know their reason for why they treat you like they do?  They aren’t interested in anything you have to say.  It’s time you listen to them.  Where did you go wrong?  Once you can answer these questions, you will be on your way to changing yourself first, then by your actions your child will change.

Do you allow yourself a break from your children?  When was the last time you took a break?  If you find yourself constantly staying on top of everything they say and do, then you need a life.  No one likes to have to fix mistakes once they are done, but if you don’t allow room for errors how will they learn?  Little things like not putting something back in its place, forgetting to call you at work when they got home from school, leaving their homework at school, etc.  If it isn’t something that is happening all the time, don’t stress over it.  There are consequences for every action not just in your home.  Sometimes you will just have to let the world wake them up to reality.

Do you think you can shelter your child from everything harmful?  If you believe this, then good luck.  No matter what you try to do some one or some thing in this world will tempt your child to break the rules you have set.  At times your child will pass the tests of life with flying colors and other times he or she won’t.  Prepare yourself in advance for the times they will not pass the test.  How will you react to the lies told, the peer pressure, the unexpected XYZ, and all your other fears?  Have a plan for the unexpected.

What are your child’s influences?  While you may be thinking your child is to blame for the change of behavior, maybe it is the family member you keep allowing your child to stay with over the weekend.  If they enjoy smoking, drinking, gambling, and entertaining negative people, do you really think your child isn’t going to think at some point that these behaviors are acceptable?  What about the movies and the music you allow your child to watch and listen?  There are many songs and television shows that glorify sex and violence, a child who is disgruntled with mom and dad just might want to have sex with the tempting classmate or pick up a gun and shoot a round of bullets.

Are you involved in other areas of your children’s life besides discipline?  When he or she wants to play ball, are you playing with him or her?  When your child shows you his or her homework, are you praising him or her?  When they have a sports game, are you there?  When he or she has a party, are you participating?  Many parents want their children to be successful, yet they won’t bother to support them when they can.  A minor adjustment in a work schedule, a change of attitude, and a little cash could make a world of difference in your child’s behavior and attitude toward you.

Parents will have to find the healthy balance between being strict and being laid back.  Know when to turn up the discipline when your child seems to be getting out of hand and turn down the discipline when they are doing well.  Using discipline, as insurance for the future is not a healthy way of getting the results you want.  No one wants to be punished in advance for some thing they haven’t even done, let alone, thought of.

Parents must show love, appreciation, respect, and care toward their children first if they hope to one day receive it back and avoid the shame of the family name.

Nicholl McGuire


Thursday

Nicholl McGuire on Raising Sons

When I wrote When Mothers Cry, the reaction from fellow mothers was just what I had imagined.  The head nod, the tears, and the questions were all to be expected after reading my book.  However, what really made me feel moved inside was when I heard from moms who were like me, raising sons.  It didn't matter whether we had fathers around or not, we all had our concerns about parenting boys. Time and time again we talked about how easy they were as compared to daughters to parent, but they too come with their share of challenges.  From the political agendas to emasculate them to relatives who were far from good role models, we moms shared our thoughts on and off the Internet and were at times visibly upset with what some of our sons had already been exposed to.

I will not say that since the birth of this blog it has been easy teaching, talking to, protecting, and shopping for children.  Not at all!  The journey has been difficult.  With one son who graduated this year from high school and three more to go, I have had my highs and lows.  Yet, I have no regrets divorcing, moving away, moving on, and having a faith.  God didn't put no more on me than I could handle.  Not every mother was built the same and not every mother can take what another mother can take--doesn't make anyone better than the other--we all have our challenges.

With the first two boys, everything played out in such a way that I know it was nothing but God who heard my prayers.  Without getting into too much detail, I will share that I was quite elated when I realized just how powerful prayer was (and still is) and how I could simply go to God with my concerns, wait on Him and see results.  I know that sometimes we get angry when people get in the way of our plans, but what I have learned is that when you have a faith, you can get God on the case and not feel like you have missed out on anything in your children's lives whether near or far.

The enemy thought years ago he had the upperhand on me before, during and after childbirth.  I admit I made my mistakes, but I never allowed them to consume me when it came to parenting my children whether part or full-time.  I refused to let mean spirited witnesses and self righteous Christians win with their wishes for my failure or vengeful behaviors because I didn't dance by the beat of their drums--lol. Some of you know what I am talking about because you have had to encounter everything from needy dads with all sorts of addictions to evil in-laws and everyone else in between.  Yet, no matter what you have heard or seen that you didn't agree with coming from judgmental folks, you still fight the good fight concerning your sons.  You stay focused on the future knowing that all you can do is show them better than you can tell them by being a good example.

I am most grateful to my Father in heaven for choosing me, a mere vessel, to impact so many through my hardships over the years.  I didn't understand at the time when I was crying what was really going on.  But I know now that serving a righteous God, you have to be right!  You have to do what is right and you have to walk right!  So I started with me, asking God to forgive me and later I learned to forgive others.

Parenting children, specifically sons, requires preparing them for leadership roles not mini-me roles. They will be leaders in workplaces possibly, in families, and elsewhere.  We are directing them to their rightful place as God intended--Adam and Jesus were both leaders.  They are to love and respect wives of their youth and their children and not to repeat the examples of children of darkness.  They are to be humble not prideful.  Choose love over hate.  Be kind to others rather than worry over what others can do for them.  They are to not only take but give and give generously.

I love my sons and I know part of loving them includes demonstrating tough love at times.  They are to not only hear about manhood, but see as well as experience it, God's way.  So in order to do that, they need their heavenly father above all else.  We are their mothers, but we are not God or doormats.  The weakness that they see in us is not there for them to manipulate, abuse, lust after, belittle, etc. but to learn from, provide support, and mature.  Where we are weak, God can use his called and chosen men to aid in making us strong.  Yet, if we don't do our parts not only preaching, but showing them by example, then we do them a disservice.

God bless our children.

Nicholl McGuire

Things You Will Absolutely Need Before The Baby Comes Home

Things You Will Absolutely Need Before The Baby Comes Home: Parenting blog for families of multi-age groups - newborns, tweens, and teens. Basic facts on raising children. Tips on shopping for children.

Tuesday

My Reaction to 4 Pregnancies Discoveries at Different Time Periods in My Life

Baby What!? - 1999

Oh no, so not ready!  I am 24 but feel like I'm 18!  I have plans--lots of them!  This can't be happening.  God do something, you know I'm not ready!  I didn't want to have a baby right now and not with this guy--he was supposed to be a friend--(sigh).

Baby Why? - 2000

Yes, why?  What was I thinking isn't this the guy--my so-called friend--who I caught creeping (he had been cheating and hiding his pagers at the time--yeah I just dated myself).  So why did I use the calendar method again!?  I married him, I really married this guy, so this is supposed to be make things alright?  Still pregnant...still settling.

Baby When? - 2006

Newly divorced, new life, new guy.  Uh oh, I think I remember when.  I felt odd that night after our love-making.  Something was different, I felt like I didn't like him much afterward.  Yep, I remember when (oh boy!) That reaction turned into "not now" I really didn't feel like I knew my new boyfriend that well. Besides, I met him on the Internet.  Were we ever going to take that trip we both planned?  Nope.  I think I feel sick.   Baby two was supposed to be the last one--stupid doctor knew I was out of it when he asked me about getting my tubes tied--he said a long name--hell, I didn't know what he was saying!  Of course I would have said yes! I am a bit angry...what's up with the red tape...Baby three was supposed to be it--but they couldn't perform the fallopian tube removal surgery that August, so back into my room I went, crying--money, money (sigh).  I can feel it, another baby in my future--I don't want a daughter, God.

How? - 2007

April 2007 expect to deliver baby December 2007, you gotta be kidding!  God we had this talk already.  Seriously, how?  I took 28 birth control pills for 28 days and was on my way to the CVS to get my refill when I noticed my stomach was a little puffier than usual.  Doctor said he put me on a low dose birth control pill since I was breast-feeding and I forgot about back up protection (sigh).  Dad's reaction (same father of "When?"), attitude, lots of attitude.  The next nine months was interesting to say the least--had last baby successfully.  Thank God, future pregnancy complications if I don't get surgery, says nurse--yes!  I told you I didn't want anymore children.  Four sons is enough, thank you Jesus!

Nicholl

Tuesday

Imperfect Mother, No Perfect Children - book excerpt Tell Me Mother You're Sorry by Nicholl McGuire

The dedicated daughter or son who tried over the years to be perfect in the eyes of her imperfect mother is desperate for compliments, adoration and other similar things, because these children got either too much praise from their self-righteous mothers or too little. These grown children hope, expect, and appreciate people showering their mother's with admiration. However, there is a side effect to all the outside attention that they don't like and don't want to put up with and that is the comparison statements that come afterward. “Everyone else thinks I'm a good mother... why don't you all?  Your friends appreciate me more than you!”

Connecting with your own stressed out mother can cause stress for you and your baby.
Her need of attention isn't worth a miscarriage.

Mrs. Perfect plays victim and the “My own children don't love me” card to guilt them. She felt disrespected, unappreciated, and didn’t feel she had a voice with her own mother, so now she expects her children to fill the void. She prides herself on her self-righteous act that is enabled through community involvement, job performance, degrees, and accolades. With so much going on with her, you can't tell her she can't do any wrong, but she can and she will. If only she could be honest with herself and those around her, the perfect act would be unnecessary. These women work far too much to build reputations and even harder to keep those around them in line. Too much work for such a short time to live on planet earth.
Try this simple exercise. Say, “I’m not perfect.” Now say it again. Say it like you mean it. What is happening on the inside every time you say this? If you are sincere, there should be a weight coming off of you. If not, and you still carry affirmations within that sound like you believe yourself to be right, perfect, always honest, and other similar thoughts, then not only did you read about someone you know, you just might be the one described previously dumping your false sense of self on to your children.
The next time someone points out one of your faults, notice how you feel on the inside, listen to the words that come out of your mouth, and watch how you and the individual react to one another. Those who look to be validated on their perfection, praised for their actions, wish to be the center of attention, and other related things, will defend, argue, act vengeful, and cause the one who is pointing out their flaws some degree of discomfort. Just like the mother who thought her self to be perfect, so to her daughter and son can’t stand to be wrong.
“You know you were wrong when you said…I disagreed with that part about…You might want to think twice about…You really hurt my feelings,” the wounded perfect mom will fight even when there is no fight with others. She will act as if she knew someone’s intentions when she really didn’t. “What did you mean when you said…? I’m not wrong, you are! What about that time when you…Don’t judge me!” Rather than simply correct the wrong, she makes a scene, lies or exaggerates, argues with people, talks badly about them, points out your faults, and anything else that will make her appear to be right. Didn’t her mother do those things to her when she pointed out her flaws? History has a way of repeating itself and not for the good either! Then when she realizes she is behaving just like her mother, the woman might humble her self and work toward change or keep up her act of perfectionism until someone calls her out.

Get your copy today, Tell Me Mother You're Sorry (eBook) by Nicholl McGuire
Printed version of Tell Me Mother You're Sorry here

Friday

The Joy of Mother's Day to Those who Mean Well

Another major holiday approaches, Mother's Day, awww.  Such a beautiful day for loving, kind, precious, and thoughtful Moms.  However, it isn't the case for those who are incarcerated, toxic, crazy, and controlling.  One of the most painful things I had to do recently was listen to a story of a child who was told to do some despicable things by her mother.  High on drugs, the mother thought that telling her child to participate in a sexual act was okay.  Little did she know, her request would spread like wildfire all the way to the ears of child welfare.

I know what the retailers, family, friends, and past programming says about "Mother's Day" and it is very nice to do something for someone when you feel moved to do so, but there is nothing in the Holy Book that says it is a requirement.  Honoring comes in many ways and not just through a man-made holiday.  Some of us spent most of our lives acknowledging holidays until we got to a place where enough is enough!  How much money, time, and energy does one have to invest year after year after year...Some people have huge families with many mothers, money or time isn't always that generous.


People burden themselves with so many things including Mother's day and other holidays.  Some needy moms cry when their children don't bring them something, call or come by.  Really?  Why take things so personal?  Others threaten children or badmouth when they aren't acknowledged--you're their mom always will always will be. 

Some moms were never fit emotionally or physically to be moms yet they are hoping/wishing/waiting for some kind of pat on the back.  Weren't these the same moms who couldn't wait for their children to grow up and move away and "don't even think about bringing any grandchildren to me?" 

Yes, this holiday has many people twisted mentally even those who forget they weren't into motherhood like other mothers.  Let us all be reminded, you are called "blessed" and favored when you have the right relationship with the one who created you.  Further, you are appreciated and shown respect when you "do to others as you would have them do to you" -- Luke 6:31 (NIV). 

Seriously, some mothers, grandmothers, stepmothers, spiritual mothers and any other mother really need to get over themselves, confess wrongdoing and change from their mean-spirited ways--God sees the good as well as the evil beyond a holiday.

Nicholl McGuire is the blog owner and author of When Mothers Cry and Tell Me Mother You're Sorry

Monday

School is Almost Out - Don't Be Pushed Into Doing Everything The Kids Want this Summer

Can you believe it?  Funny how time flies.  The children made it through another year and you did too, Mom. Good job!  You didn't do the unthinkable after a teacher said or did something that rubbed you the wrong way.  You didn't go up to the school and hurt that little boy or girl who gave your child misery.  You didn't go off on another parent over stealing a parking space...Congrats Moms everywhere for passing those life tests that grate your nerves.

Now for some of you new moms, it won't be long before you will be shuttling your child off to school.  Are they ready for Kindergarten yet?  If not, start doing the things to get them ready.  So what is on the agenda for the summer?  In a previous blog entry, I spoke about this topic.  But have you Moms made plans yet?

One thing I noticed with each school break was my children's need for not just more stuff (sigh), but they also wanted some downtime that wasn't scheduled with activities (outdoor trips) and nothing was required of them (chores).  With older children, you have to keep this in mind.  No child takes too kindly for long when their days are often dominated by adults. "Hey get ready we are going to...By the way don't forget to do...You really ought to....or else!"

Be sure to have what I called in the past on this blog, "Do nothing time" for the children.  It is a moment in the day where there is nothing but peace and quiet--they do nothing and so do you.  This can happen on weekends if you are a working mom.  They can lie down, sit down, or stare out the window, but the time is meant for life's activity to slow down.  You can play soft music or a slow show to help wind them down.

As much as sons and daughters push us to want to go here and there, buy this, and do that every time they have a school break, there is absolutely nothing wrong with the word, "No...not today.  Mom needs a time-out.  I don't have the money for that...no time for this."  The children might rant, throw things around, etc. due to your resistance, but SO WHAT! Yep, so what.  You can take some things they already have too.  One summer I took my children to the police station, told them ugly stories about some of their relatives who when they were young caused problems and the consequences they received...the anger outbursts were rare and then eventually "do nothing time" was appreciated especially after workbook, flashcard and educational games on the Internet time.  They were wore out--lol.

Mom, don't be bullied into filling every day up with stuff to do for "I'm so bored" children just because they are out of school.  Consider this the debt isn't worth it and before long they will be out the door forgetting about a lot of the stuff you did anyway until they have children of their own--lol.

Nicholl McGuire blog owner and mother of four sons (soon to be young adult, teenager, tween, and almost tween.)

Another blog worth checking out I manage, enjoy! http://parentsbabieschildren.blogspot.com


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About Me

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Over 20 years office work experience, six years completed college coursework, background in print media and communications, recognized for exceptional attendance and received merit increase for past job performance, self-published author and part-time entrepreneur, Internet marketing and social media experience. Interned for non-profit organization, women's group and community service business. Additional experience: teaching/training others, customer service and sales. Learn more at Nicholl McGuire and Nicholl McGuire Media

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