Tagged with "organization"
18 Sep
2017
Posted in: parenting
By    Comments Off on Teenagers Deserve More From Adults

Teenagers Deserve More From Adults

Cildren hiking a trail in Idaho

Twice last week I listened to adults rant about teenagers. I heard all about how lazy teens are, how disrespectful, how they lack work ethic, how they dress like slobs and how our future is surely doomed when that lot reaches adulthood and takes over. I listened and silently seethed until the ranting was over. Both times I shared only one thought,” You, obviously, don’t know the right teenagers.”

Right around the time I thought I had a decent grasp of parenting, my oldest became a teenager and all thoughts of parenting competency flew out the window. I’m at the front-line of all things teenager. I live with a freshman in high school and another a few months shy of 13. There are days I feel I know more about what’s happening in the lives of the teenagers I know than about friends my own age. Teenagers can be disrespectful, lazy, and dress poorly. But at the age of 40, I can also be all those things.

I know active teens who keep much busier schedules than most adults I know. They go to school, followed by athletic practice and find time to finish schoolwork. I know some who attend school during the day and work several hours in the evening. There are those who take classes at local high schools and a community college. Then there are those teens who manage a life like one of the above and rely only on their two feet for transportation.

I’m the first to say teens can be annoying with their knowledge of everything. I’ve been on the receiving end of eye rolling, although I’m sure he learned that from me. Not everything I ask is done as quickly as I would like. My definition of organization and that of a freshman in high school are not the same. Communication lines are sometimes a tangled mess, or monosyllabic in nature. Teenagers seem to run on a slightly less-exact form of time than adults. Most days I’m sure I talk only to hear myself speak and must remind certain people that I’m the adult, not the other way around.

Teens can also be inquisitive, funny, caring, hard working, go-getters and more intelligent than they sometimes let on. They are complicated, hormonal-charged adult-like children struggling to keep up with the endless physical changes and social changes that come with growing up. Adults tend to forget all of that when faced with the talking back, attitude and rule breaking. I’m guilty 100 times over for being too hard on our teen. I know I forget when dealing with him how amazing he can be when he’s not busy annoying me. Much of the issues I have with my own teenager is him as much as it is me. I’m tired, hormonal, over-worked, under-appreciated and grouchy at times. I have no idea how to raise a teen or guide his path while still giving him ample room to both falter and soar. It’s a constant struggle of me treating him like he’s younger than he is while also expecting him to act older than his age. No wonder teenagers push back.

I know there is greatness in those moody world-changers we’re raising. There’s no time for the ranting and bashing on our teenagers who are quickly morphing into young adults. We need to support their goals and dreams, give them ways to channel their ideas and foster their gifts and talents. Finding your way, at whatever age, is not an easy task. Let’s show less judgement and offer more guidance.


 
Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me
By     |    Sep 12, 2016
Posted in: parenting     |    Comments Off on Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me

Dear Teachers: It’s Not You, It’s Me

Teachers, I’m asking for some grace. We’re in our first full week of the new school year. We’ve done the back-to-school nights and signed all the papers. We’re almost in the groove, heavy emphasis on almost. Give me time to acclimate to the four varying schedules and demands of our children. Half our kids don’t have homework. The other half will, one far more than the other. There are reading logs to keep and behavior ladders to memorize. When I... [Read More]

Read more
Small Acts of Kindness, Big Effects
By     |    Sep 29, 2015
Posted in: uncategorized     |    Comments Off on Small Acts of Kindness, Big Effects

Small Acts of Kindness, Big Effects

I rarely ask for help with the logistics of running a family. We have no grandparents to give us a hand, so all chauffeuring and encouragement at activities falls fully on Craig’s and my shoulders. It’s exhausting and rewarding and really exhausting to be the only ones who are there to watch the kids succeed and, sometimes, struggle in their various activities. Sharing the load makes for less stress and frees room for more enjoyment. I’m looking forward to having... [Read More]

Read more
Caught Off Guard by Adulthood
By     |    Apr 8, 2015
Posted in: uncategorized     |    1 Comment

Caught Off Guard by Adulthood

I spent spring break last week being easily distracted by my children. They wanted to go to a park multiple times. We went. They wanted to paint. We did. They wanted a movie marathon. We sat for hours watching movies, which is a true indulgence at this house. I soaked in the best part of being able to work from home: being with my children. It wasn’t all roses and butterflies. There were thorns during the week. I have a... [Read More]

Read more
Essentials for Family Road Trips
By     |    Apr 2, 2015
Posted in: travel     |    Comments Off on Essentials for Family Road Trips

Essentials for Family Road Trips

It’s spring break, and we’re staying home for the first time in years. We have an epic road trip planned this summer and vacation days are being stockpiled for the adventure. I’m antsy to hit the highways, Interstates and (sometimes) unpaved county roads to discover new places in the USA. Even though we’re months away from our next major family road trip, I’ve already started packing in my head. I have lists tucked away in notebooks for items to pack.... [Read More]

Read more
Cleaning, Rearranging and Clearing Clutter
By     |    Mar 23, 2015
Posted in: projects     |    Comments Off on Cleaning, Rearranging and Clearing Clutter

Cleaning, Rearranging and Clearing Clutter

Recent bright blue skies and sunshine kicked me into spring cleaning and organizing mode. I’ve cleaned closets and drawers while loads of curtains stripped from grimy windows washed. Furniture was moved and vacuumed under. Trim paint was touched up, and that’s just the start of my spring cleaning list. I’m energized by taking care of our home. I’ve learned when I feel motivated to clean, rearrange and clear clutter, it’s best to buckle down and go with the urge. Actually... [Read More]

Read more
The Power of a Ticket Stub
By     |    Jan 2, 2015
Posted in: projects     |    Comments Off on The Power of a Ticket Stub

The Power of a Ticket Stub

There’s a gold box in a drawer in my nightstand that’s bursting with memories. I’ve kept one ticket from every concert, movie, amusement park and athletic event we’ve been to in our 13 1/2 years of marriage. I’m a recovering hoarder of mementos. I’m light years better than I used to be, but ticket stubs, photographs and the occasional map and pamphlet are still hard for me to part with. I’ll come home from an event and slip the newest... [Read More]

Read more
When Serving Seems Like Taking
By     |    Oct 28, 2014
Posted in: uncategorized     |    Comments Off on When Serving Seems Like Taking

When Serving Seems Like Taking

“You’re always helping and never with us.” Truth from my nine-year-old filled me with guilt, even if “never” was a bit of an exaggeration. We were talking about the upcoming annual fall festival at the elementary school my two youngest boys attend. I was telling them about some of the games and how they’d have to help daddy get costumes together before they came up to the school that night. I’d already be up there helping. That prompted the small... [Read More]

Read more
Repurposed Windows for Decorating
By     |    Apr 22, 2014
Posted in: projects     |    1 Comment

Repurposed Windows for Decorating

I have quite a few repurposed windows as decorations in our home. I’m frugal and crafty which fuels my need to repurpose items. My first grader told me last week our house was decorated in “clean junk.” I was quick to give a vocabulary lesson. Not junk, but repurposed items. I write this as I stare at the weathered, vintage drawer front we found on an old homestead months ago. I’ve finally decided where to hang it. Sitting on my... [Read More]

Read more
Forced into Spring Cleaning
By     |    Apr 16, 2014
Posted in: projects     |    Comments Off on Forced into Spring Cleaning

Forced into Spring Cleaning

If there’s an upside to having a sick family, it’s being forced to clean house. Walls have been wiped, bedding stripped, pillows washed and furniture disinfected. My sick family gave me reason to start spring cleaning. I actually don’t mind cleaning, so purposefully setting time aside for spring cleaning fits my personality. I find the act of taking care of what’s mine to be rewarding. Cleaning out closets and drawers gives me a natural high. Getting rid of clutter helps... [Read More]

Read more
Organizing School Papers
By     |    Feb 19, 2014
Posted in: parenting, projects     |    Comments Off on Organizing School Papers

Organizing School Papers

We have three children in elementary school and one in preschool.  It was obvious from the first day of elementary school six years ago that organizing school papers would be necessary. The paperwork that is dumped from folders onto my island counter is overwhelming most days. I dread Mondays when our boys bring home their folders full of papers ranging from the next athletic league signup to weekly pizza deals to lunch menus to class newsletters. Everything in triplicate. Rule... [Read More]

Read more
Distracted vs. Busy
By     |    Jan 24, 2014
Posted in: uncategorized     |    3 Comments

Distracted vs. Busy

I decided this year I would make better use of my time. When I began critiquing my choices, it became evident there was a distinction between distracted vs. busy. I feel stretched too thin most days. There’s just not enough of my husband and I to go around, and no safety net of people to fall back on. Life needed to be weeded. Those things which were choking and constraining me while not feeding me in some sense, needed to... [Read More]

Read more