Tag Archive | "mom advice"

My 2 Teens And Toddler

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My 2 Teens And Toddler

Posted on 22 August 2011 by Kari Gibson

Summer 2011 was one of my favorite … 2 mission trips, family camp, Sanibel Island, and all the fun stuff in between.  Just like my favorite episode of “The Middle” I lit our new tiki torches and vowed … it’s time to get our summer on!  It’s hard to believe that I have 2 High Schoolers and a new Preschooler.  The kids have such an adventure ahead … a brand new freshman and a senior, who actually got one class together! They are digging a well together and helping the community of Chuko, Wayama have clean water in the spring.  They will both travel again to Ethiopia, and celebrate the inauguration of the completed well project .. hopefully next year!  Our youngest starts preschool this year one day a week.  Princess Z is so excited about going to school like her big siblings.  She has a new back pack and ready to learn and play.

I’m still going to light my tiki tourches for a few more weeks … I have to ease myself out of summer fun.  Thank you bloggers for all your incredible help making bows and headbands this summer and your support for our orphan care projects.  The best is yet to come!

I’m starting my “back to blogging” schedule, too.  We’ll keep the weekly posts fresh and new, as well as old favorites… Wednesday WOW Recipes and adoption stories.  I can’t wait to share new Vlogs (blog + video) from a variety of guests: hubby, friends, and mission team members.  We’re all in this together!  I pray that you continue to love Big and go Big!

What was your best summer adventure?


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Inner Beauty Series – The Brownie Fiasco

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Inner Beauty Series – The Brownie Fiasco

Posted on 10 June 2011 by Kari Gibson

The Brownie Fiasco – by Kit Hoeck

Our son Kyle graduated from High School on May 13, and it’s been a wild and crazy ride the past few weeks:  preparing for finals, graduation, company, the party … you know the drill!  A few days before his last week of school, Kyle asked if I would make my “famous brownies” and bring them to school during lunch to share with his friends.  What mother could refuse such a request from her soon-to-be college-bound son!  But true to form, I was juggling a million things the morning of brownie baking and the simple task turned into a hysterical fiasco!

I had a writing deadline that day so I spent time early that morning looking over my assignment.  I wanted the brownies to be warm so I also decided to bake them in the morning instead of the night before, but after I had all the other ingredients (okay two boxed brownie mixes!) in the bowl I realized the only oil I had was Virgin Olive Oil.  My husband is the “chef” in our home so I didn’t think it would make a difference and I dumped it in the mix.  But being the conscientious baker, I tasted the batter and it was horrible!  Worried that it would cause the baked brownies to taste terrible – still in my morning sweats, no bra, no makeup, and no shower – I jumped in my car and headed for the nearest mini mart for two more boxes of brownie mix and Crisco Oil to start over.  Unbelievably, the mini mart only had ONE box of brownie mix.  Yikes!  Time is running out!  I held up the box of brownie mix and asked the cashier if he had one more.  Speaking little to no English he repeatedly told his assistant to go look – but not understanding him – the assistant was unsure of what he was looking for!  I showed him the box, followed him to the shelf, but of course there wasn’t another box.  I finally paid and arriving home thought I could mix up another box with the right oil and just mix PART of the other batter and hopefully that would be okay.  While mixing the new batter, my cell phone rang and it was my dear friend Kari Gibson!  As we chatted, I decided I should probably eat something because my blood sugar was beginning to drop.  As I mixed batter, talked with Kari, cradling my phone against my ear … I lost grip and my cell phone landed in my bowl of cheerios!  I quickly grabbed it hoping not to miss a beat but suddenly Kari was yelling in my ear, “Kit, you sound gargley, I can’t understand you!”  When I explained what had just transpired, she told me to take my phone apart and dry it with my hairdryer!  I quickly dumped the brownie mixture into the pan, added the “famous ingredients” – reeses peanut butter chips and chocolate chips – and ran to my hair dryer!  I finally showered and made it to the high school where the brownies were a big hit with Kyle’s friends, soccer coaches, and principals!

Why do I share this ridiculous story with you?  I share it because I am a woman who takes herself way too seriously at times.  I’ve healed much on this journey, but it would have been easy for me to let that situation ruin my entire day by allowing Satan to convince me that I was inadequate and incapable as a wife, mother, and a writer desiring that my words bring healing, hope, and encouragement to others.  But that day, I CLUNG to truth and remembered that God’s promises are true and He alone brings us the hope to persevere and succeed in this life.  Psalm 119:49-52 tells us, “…you have given me hope.  My comfort in my suffering is this:  Your promise preserves my life.”  His hope is an anchor for our souls (Heb. 6:19), firm and secure.  We do not need to seek man’s approval because what this world has to offer is empty and meaningless.  Christ promises us that His “divine power has given us EVERYTHING we need for life and godliness through Him…” and that it’s those precious promises that allow us to participate with Him and escape the corruption of this world (2 Peter 1:3-4).

Dear sisters, it is my hope and prayer that in whatever season you find yourself today, you will discover comfort in a very real and magnificent God who has our back – even when we make a mess of our brownies!

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Feelings: Alike And Different

Posted on 09 June 2011 by Kari Gibson

Hi!  My name is Kim (mom to three amazing kids ages 5, 6, and 7) and I am super excited to share this post as part of Kari’s guest posts while she is away.  If you’ve read my blog you know that I love sharing our story so that others know they are not alone in this journey.  Adoption is a wonderful blessing but can be difficult at times.  I find that it’s easier to get through the difficult times if you know you are not alone.  This is one of those posts I wrote a while back in hopes that others might know they are not alone. If you would like to follow on our journey you are always welcome!  www.ablissfulheart.blogspot.com

Feelings:  Alike and Different

We often get questions about adoption and recently through an email conversation with someone who is interested in adoption and our story I got asked about my feelings toward my children since one is by birth and two by adoption.  This person also has a child by birth and has questions about how she might feel toward children she would adopt.  Will it be different?  Will her responses to the children be the same?  I assured her that these questions are very normal and I along with several other families whom we know that are similar to our situation have questioned those same things.

So what about our feelings ……… my feelings specifically.  I can’t speak for other families but I can share our experiences.  My short answer would be, “they are the same and they are different.”

Some examples of the same………

  • A desire to protect and provide safety:  with all my children no matter which way they came to me I have a desire to protect them.  New situations they encounter worry me and I want to know that they will be safe and not afraid.  I see them doing something dangerous and no matter which child they are I am right there to direct and guide and keep them safe.
  • A desire for them to be happy:  no matter which of the three …. my heart is happy when they are happy.  I love seeing them have fun, experiencing joy and being free from life’s worries.

There are times, however, that it’s different.  J came into our lives almost 8 years ago by birth. I carried her for 9 months and for almost 8 years now have met her needs, provided safety and security, laughed and played with her, etc.  There is something about when she sits in my lap where she and I both melt into each other.  Our hearts beat at the same pace, she completely relaxes into me and fully trusts.  It’s an amazing thing.  I would have to say that we’re not “trying” at the relationship with Jenna, it just is…. if that makes sense.

With S & A the relationship doesn’t just happen.  It’s what I would call work in progress.  I think a common misconception of families who adopt is “love at first sight” or that “it just is” feeling that I mentioned above that we have with our biological daughter.  We did love them from the minute we saw their referral pictures and the moment we met them was equally as special as the moment J was put into my arms for the first time, but truth be told we quickly realized we were all just strangers to each other who had been thrown into living together. It takes a while for strangers to get to know one another, become close and enjoy each other.

If I am being truthfully honest this stranger issue….. puts a barrier between us at times.  I don’t always know what they need and they don’t always come to us when they need something.  They’re learning how to trust us and we’re learning to read their cues.  Have I missed a few of those cues?  Absolutely!  That doesn’t mean I love them less – it just means I am still getting to know them.

Love takes time to grow and develop.  I struggled with that the first year we were home.  I desperately want to love A & S as I love J but I have had 8 years to develop my relationship with J.  It’s bound to be different…. how could it not be.  I had to cut myself some slack and allow love to grow between all of us. I continually pray for God to join our hearts and bring our relationship with S & A to that “just is” place.  The bible says, he knows the desires of my heart and promises to give those to me when I delight in him.

Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart. Psalm 37:4

I have to say this too about my feelings for A & S….. It has completely put me in a place of seeing just how gracious my God is.  We are all adopted into God’s family when we accept Jesus Christ as our savior and Lord.  I first hand know the struggles now to find feelings for a child who is not biologically mine.  I have failed miserably at times in my search for feelings.  A specific example:  one of the kids fell outside and I wasn’t as sympathetic as I could have been.  Truth is I would have handled it differently with J.  I became aware instantly of that feeling and felt as though I had failed in that moment.  But God NEVER fails in his love for us.  I am grafted in to God’s family just as A & S are grafted into our family.  God NEVER fails to pick me up when I fall down and his feelings for me are perfect in every way.  I was never fully aware of that until he took me down this adoption journey and I realized how difficult it can be at times to love even when you want to with all you have.

I have no doubt in my mind that somewhere down the road my relationship with S & A will be at that “just is” place that I have with J. Until then we just keep growing. It’s amazing how far we’ve come. Home almost two years and I’ve already learned so much about my children. I am eager to see what feelings and emotions come for my children after another two years!

Be blessed!
Kim’s Blog: www.ablissfulheart.blogspot.com

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How To Talk (Feelings) With Your Kids

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How To Talk (Feelings) With Your Kids

Posted on 16 May 2011 by Kari Gibson

I’m the kind of mom who wears all my emotions on my sleeve, right out there for everyone to see.  I can’t do it any other way… my feelings are an open book for my family.  I’m not a stuffer, but I talk to think.  I have had to learn through the years of mommyhood, to balance what feelings I share with my three kids, and feelings I save just for my hubby.  I feel big, love big, and talk big- I don’t do many things small, but I know sometimes the best mommy motto is less is more.

I love asking my kids how they feel on a daily basis.  I really want to know their feelings after a long day at school, after spending time with friends, after losing a golf match, or just hanging out … but, what if they’re not in the mood to share feelings with me?

My daughter, Hannah (14) has certain “requirements” before she shares her feelings with me.  She definitely thinks to talk and needs time to process what she is feeling.  If I approach her before she’s ready- it’s a closed door for me.  I bat zero or get the crazy look… Mom I’m not in the mood. I work on respecting her space and time to think. The best time for me to hear my teen share her feelings is just before bedtime.  I hang out with her and she opens the floodgates.. it’s important for me to make the time to relax and listen.  Do you have a child that takes time to share feelings?

On the other hand, Michael (17) and Zoie (3) both talk to think.  They know immediately how they are feeling and don’t hold back. I always tell them to bring their drama to their mama! If Michael is watching golf, I might have to wait until a commercial, but he’s great about communicating on the spot what he is feeling.  Zoie is an open feeling book, too.  I never have to second guess what emotions she is feeling during the day- sad, silly, mad, cranky, happy… she pretty much feels a variety of crazy feelings all day long!  It’s a joy for me to just try and keep up with Miss Z Personality.  Do you have a child that has an easy time sharing feelings?

I love this (feeling) advice:

The key to helping your child feel understood is to acknowledge his feelings. Follow these steps to get more in tune with your child:

  • Label the feeling: For younger children, the simpler label you offer the better. Use words like mad, happy, sad and scared. For older children, more specific words help them to pinpoint the exact emotion: disappointed, worried and embarrassed.
  • State the reason for the feeling. Make your best guess as to why your child feels as he does. For example, say, “It looks like you’re mad because Mom said you can’t have dessert today.”
  • Don’t judge your child. Your child needs to know that it is okay to express emotion. However, at times you may need to teach your child how to express his feelings in ways that are healthy and not hurtful to others.

Do’s and Don’ts- important tips for moms!

Eight Great Anger Busters

  1. Model anger management. “Mommy is feeling very angry right now, so I’m going to take time to be alone and get some self-control.
  2. Show respect. Don’t participate by calling names or getting physical.
  3. Give them words to express their anger. “I know you are disappointed, or sad or frustrated.”
  4. Identify with their pain. “I remember when I didn’t get to go to a party…”
  5. Set positive limits. Instead of saying, “Don’t you throw that doll,” say, “After you put the doll on the table, we can go have snack.”
  6. Redirect energy bursts that often come with anger. Encourage positive outlets like running, jumping, blowing into a horn or painting.
  7. Avoid power struggles with your child. They’re always lose-lose situations. If your goal is to control, you will teach him to control others.
  8. Provide a cooling-off period by reading a book together or going on a walk. Then calmly discuss what happened and make a plan for next time.

Today I Feel Silly Book

Today I feel silly. Mom says it’s the heat.
I put rouge on the cat and gloves on my feet.
I ate noodles for breakfast and pancakes at night.
I dressed like a star and was quite a sight.

Today I am sad, my mood’s heavy and gray.
There’s a frown on my face and it’s been there all day.
My best friend and I had a really big fight.
She said that I tattled and I know that she’s right.

Silly, cranky, excited, or sad–everyone has moods that can change each day. Jamie Lee Curtis’s zany and touching verse, paired with Laura Cornell’s whimsical and original illustrations, helps kids explore, identify, and, even have fun with their ever-changing moods.

The Feeling Doll (you can buy)

“Teaching your kids how to express their feelings can leave you feeling just as frustrated as they are. Make it a little bit easier on both of you with a Kimochi doll that does all the explaining for you. Available as a cloud, cat, octopus or bug, the cuddly, plush Kimochi encourages kids to express their feelings in a fun and comfortable way. Each doll comes with a pack of nine emotions such as jealous, happy, sad, mad, grateful, and cranky, where they can be placed in the front pocket of the Kimochi. Named for the Japanese word for “feelings,” start using your Kimochi by reading the “Feel Guide” that’s also included.”

Kimochi Doll, $38, at uncommongoods.com

Are you a  talk to think mom or think to talk mom- I want to know!

Two great (mom-friendly approved) blogs about hair care- they make me feel happy…

PS: they are helping promote my Uganda Headband Project.

Click here to view- Chocolate Hair Vanilla Care

Click here to view- Beads, Braids & Beyond

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Inner Beauty Series – I Wish

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Inner Beauty Series – I Wish

Posted on 21 April 2011 by Kari Gibson

I Wish

Point of Grace came out with a song years ago entitled, “I Wish.”  I recently came across this song and fell in love with it!  I tell my boys – it’s my feel good song I listen to in my car nearly every day.  Here’s a peek at the lyrics: “… wish I didn’t feel so helpless, wish I didn’t act so selfish, and wish I didn’t get so mad at the world. … wish my hair was a little bit smoother; my jeans fit a little looser, and wish I always knew the right things to say.  I wish I was better with all the things that matter, guess I’ve got some learning to do…”  I kind of laugh every time I hear the part about smoother hair and looser jeans, as I think there are many of us who relate to those feelings.  I’ve shared enough in previous blogs for you to know I have a history of struggling with my esteem, feelings of fitting in, or that I have any real purpose for God.  We live in a society that constantly bombards us with a need to be all things to all people.  I recently read an article from a Christian author where she stated that it was the responsibility of a wife to have meals planned and prepared, maintain an orderly home, keep herself sexually appealing, manage the children, and anticipate the household needs of her husband – even if she works outside the home.  Now, my intent is not to take her views out of context – but I would challenge women to examine their hearts and recognize that their worth in Christ runs far deeper than appearance or what we accomplish in a day.  I firmly believe that our Almighty is a god of order and desires discipline in our lives, but I’ve been learning to hold fast to some very powerful truths that are setting me free from the trap of a performance-based life!  Our foundation MUST be in the truth of who we are in Christ, not on a world’s view.  I hope these scriptures will encourage you today to lean hard on a savior who paid the COMPLETE price for us on the cross:  Matthew 5:14 tells us we are the light of the world; a child of God (John 1:12); Christ’s friend! (John 15:15); no longer a slave to sin, we are a slave to righteousness (Rom 6:18); we are a temple, literally a home of God and His Spirit, His life, dwells in us! (Cor.3:16; 6:1).  Sisters we are chosen and dearly loved by God (1 Thess. 1:4).  Please seek to recognize your worth in Christ today and cling to the ONE who is completely able to fill your soul.

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Are You a Crazy Pushover Mom?

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Are You a Crazy Pushover Mom?

Posted on 19 April 2011 by Kari Gibson

I have asked my own self this question many times throughout my 17 years of being a mom.  Am I a pushover?  I am a softie by nature and tend to soak up my 3 kid’s drama like a big yellow sponge.  I love having the awesome adventure of raising two teens and a toddler, but with that comes all kinds of craziness!

I often look around the house and wonder where I went wrong.  Why am I the only one who thinks dirty socks, empty chip bags, and toys are not part of the decor?  My endless attempts of creating chore charts, post-it note reminders, and old fashioned nagging don’t always do the trick.

It’s hard to say no to my handsome son when he asks for the zillionth time for extra cash for a fun night out with his friends.  Inside I’m thinking, why am I not out with my friends spending my money? Don’t get me wrong; both my teens have part time jobs, but it’s hard to get the message across that saving and budgeting your money helps start good patterns- they just want to have fun!

I’m still working on listening to their problems without jumping in too fast to fix things.  Hannah came home last week with a problem at school and before she even shared, she reminded me NOT to call her teacher… she was going to take care of things on her own.  At times, I have to bite my lip and repeat in my head the verse “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry (James 1:19).”  I want my children to grow up God confident that they can fix their own problems without a crazy MAMA TNT rescue mission.  My love for them is protective and fierce, but I’m reminded daily that God loves them even more than I do!

Teaching our kids personal responsibility is one of the best life lessons we can give them (and moms too).  I wasted years attempting to nag help my son get straight A’s- knowing he was fully capable of making high scores academically.  I was a former 5th grade teacher, for heaven’s sake – I had a college education dedicated with the knowledge and wisdom on how to bring out the best in students.  I will never forget the day, I exploded over a score he made in science class.  He forgot to turn in an assignment and it dropped his grade to a D.  I blasted him with words like- responsibility, dedication, discipline, organization, disappointment… I think you get the point.  But, the look on his face stopped me dead in my tracks.  He drove off to school and I knew he was crushed in spirit.  My craziness over his grades, made my son feel unloved.  I immediately called him on his cell and asked him to forgive me.  Everything in his voice crushed MY heart.  I had royally messed up and it was my responsibility to fix my problem.  I’m embarrassed to admit to you that this happened the day before my mission trip to Ethiopia in February.  God convicted my heart and I have been “grade crazy” free for the past three months ( you can ask my son).  I’m a constant work in progress, and grateful for God’s mercies!

Moms, we can always admit our mistakes, and come up with a new plan- it’s absolutely never too late to redeem ourselves, even when we have teenagers and toddlers!

Take the “Are you a Pushover” Quiz here.

Tell me what you think?

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How To Have Crazy Fun at Prom (Just for Moms!)

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How To Have Crazy Fun at Prom (Just for Moms!)

Posted on 04 April 2011 by Kari Gibson

I had crazy fun at my son’s pre-prom stuff this weekend!  Michael went to prom with a great friend and they had a blast taking photos before the big event at the local golf country club.  We had a few moms bring appetizers and sparkling cider, but the best part for me was watching Michael making awesome memories with his friends that will last a lifetime.  I had tears in my eyes, realizing he was growing up so fast- how did this happen?

What was your favorite prom memory?

Guess what, I went to prom with Roger- is that crazy or what?!

How to have fun at your son or daughter’s prom?

  • Invite all the parents to take photos somewhere with beautiful scenery.
  • Bring munchies, appetizers, and sparkling cider with fun plastic glasses.
  • Set the “house rules” with the parents and teens if you are the hub house where they will crash after prom events are over.
  • Talk to your child about your expectations.
  • Celebrate together a milestone with your child… great time to make a memory.

(sparkling cider:)

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Rose Colored Lenses


Rose Colored Lenses

Posted on 07 February 2011 by Kari Gibson

Guest Blogger-
Once a reporter stood in front of a fire as it consumed a house and then he turned to see the homeowners and their little son watching it burn. The reporter fishing for a human-interest angle, said to the boy, “Son, it looks as if you don’t have a home anymore.” The little boy promptly answered, “Oh, yes, we have a home. We just don’t have a house to put it in.”
~Barbara Johnson

What a story! I just loved that little boy’s answer. Where did he get such a positive outlook? Probably from his parents! Children may not always turn out exactly like their parents, but for the most part, they do! My first thought when reading that was, I bet his mother and father had already had an encouraging talk with him. Poor boy, I didn’t give him much credit did I? However, that was my first thought! This mother was training her child (Proverbs 22:6) to be positive.

Don’t you just love being around positive people? I do. I love happy people. Now, let us not confuse the party people with the positive people. I am not talking about the, “I’m here, ready to have a good time, and be the life of the party” type of people. (Very sorry, if you are one of them!) I am interested in talking about people that are positive everyday of their lives!

I am talking about the people that are happy before the party, even if it means blowing up one hundred balloons, baking dozens of cupcakes and barely having anytime to get dressed. I am talking about the people that love their life even when it is not all fun and parties. People that are passionate about their sometimes boring, sometimes chaotic, sometimes backwards life.  The people that feel fortunate, grateful and blessed.

The other day when talking to my cousin, I was telling her how weird it is to look back at certain times in my life, like birthdays, weddings and family reunions and feel a twinge of sadness. Almost, like I missed some very special moments. Moments that should have been filled with happy memories, but they were not, because of my disposition and the relationship that I was in.

Thinking about those days now, seems like it was a completely different life and I was a completely different person. I can find myself starting to look back and think, wow, I wasted a decade of my life being unhappy. 10 years of my life that I will never get back! However, instead of dwelling on the negative, I find myself feeling grateful to have learned so much.

If I had not gone through what I did, I would not be the person that I am today. Those times were tough and I fell down many times, but I kept getting up because I knew that better days were ahead. I survived, because of prayer and positivity! Our situations vary and our circumstances can sometimes seem bleak, but a positive outlook can make all of the difference. I truly believe that! My life got happier once I started looking at my life, my future, and my circumstances through rose-colored lenses.

We are human and life can be painful some days. I believe that it is okay to give ourselves a mourning period. It is okay to vent to our friends and even tell God, we do not understand why “this” is happening to us, as we ask him for strength, but then, enough is enough. We must get up and get on with our life, because this world has too much to offer.

My mom was always one of those happy people! She was like a happy little bird chirping in the morning and singing her songs, telling us, “Rise and shine. It’s a beautiful day!” Although, I didn’t always understand her happiness and my response was usually “Mom, seriously?!” Now, I go through the same thing with our kids.

Yesterday, my hubby and I were joking with our son and he was so serious! He never even cracked a smile, but I kept joking and laughing, because I know that even if he does not appreciate it now, in a few years he will. Then this morning, I walked into the girls’ bedrooms singing, “Good morning! It’s a lovely daaaaay!” Both of the girls groaned, complained, and gave me grumpy looks. It made me think of my mom.

Kids are going to be grumpy. Kids are going to find something to complain about, but as their parents, we are going to continue to give them all the reasons that they should look forward to their day. To their life. To whatever comes next!

Much like the little boy’s parents did in the story above.  That way when our children become adults, they understand that bad things may sometimes happen to good people, but positive people never let the bad things keep them down.

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Mom VS. Princess TNT

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Mom VS. Princess TNT

Posted on 23 September 2010 by Kari Gibson

Zoie turns 29 months old today!  She is almost officially a 2.5 year old.  It’s hard to imagine how tiny she was when we first met her in Ethiopia.  Her spirit radiates spunk and life and joy!  We are so honored to be her family and fall in love with her more each day.  She loves to sing, dance, swim, skip, color, take baths, and cuddle.  She hates naps, vegetables, meat, the word no, and sticky hands.  Hubby and I feel like we’re seasoned parents with 2 teenagers who managed to stay alive during the terrible terrific twos.  At times, we rack our brain trying to remember the tips we received from family and friends as they helped us maneuver through the toddler years.  A few blasts from the past surface, but nothing seems to compare with Princess TNT!!

Princess TNT (aka Zoie) can throw a temper tantrum like a keg of dynomite with a pink bow.  It can be startling, when the fuse blows and we missed the vital warning signs.  The other day, daddy told her she needed to eat her grapes before she could have her crackers.  The shrilling screams made him duck for cover, but I dragged him out and convinced him he was safe.  The thing that works well with Zoie right now are “Time In’s.”  We learned this technique in one of my adoption books, but it really works.  When the explosion of emotion is at a max, we put her on her chair and stand quietly next to her.  I put my hand on her head or back and just remind her how much I love her even when she is throwing a fit.  I time her 2.5 minutes and then say outloud- “OK, time-in is over.  If she has quieted down and things are back in control… I let her get up and back to playing.

Parenting is a journey and each child is unique, amazing, and miraculous.  I want to hear your stories and advice-  If you have any tips you want to share or a crazy post about taming a toddler TNT please add in comments for all of us to read.

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