How I Helped My Baby Sleep Without a Sleep Method

Did you find this blog because you Googled, “How do I get my baby to sleep through the night?” Well then, my friend, soak in this moment of knowing…this is NOT your magic bullet to deep nourishing sleep. At Connected Families, we don’t believe in quick fixes. We believe in lasting change. We believe in seeking the Holy Spirit, and the hard work that brings rich connection between parent and child.

If you have been following our work for a while, you are familiar with the Connected Families Framework. Over the last two years, while working behind the scenes I couldn’t help but memorize and internalize these four levels of parent/child connection. I assumed it would come in handy in my parenting journey, but I was not expecting to apply it so early!

Back to School

Equip your family for a great school year!

No matter the type of school – preschool, public, private, home-school, or alternative school – the transition from summer activities to educational studies generally has a few bumps in the road for both parents and kids. Because of feedback from parents just like you, we know the following four articles are worth the read to equip your family for a great school year!

Prep Your Kids for a Responsible School Year

6 Ways to Combat Back to School Anxiety

How to Get Kids to Care About School and Grades – Without Nagging

Make the Homework Battle a Win for Everyone!

 

From all of us at Connected Families, we wish you a school year full of growth, joy and connection!

Beat Boredom This Summer With These 4 Tips

Empowering your kids’ God-given creativity


R
esearch has shown that being bored is not such a bad thing for kids.  Boredom can foster creativity and patience.  Yet, when a parent hears that tired phrase, “I’m bored!” again and again, we may feel the need to fix the boredom problem, and keep our kids happy and busy. Does this work?  Possibly. But, only if you are trying to fix the problem in the short term. Once the activity or event is over, the familiar whine resurfaces. How do we beat boredom once and for all with kids, while at the same time teach them some important life skills? Read the story below about my interaction with a seven-year-old family friend, and consider these four tips to beat boredom in your own family.

Josie looked at me (the “fun guy” at the table) as she announced with conviction, “I’m bored!”

We were at an outdoor restaurant, and she had finished eating before the rest of us.

Prep Your Kids for a Responsible School Year

Getting an education is a tremendous privilege. Most parents recognize that future opportunities are built on many layers of learning that happen during the school years. That’s why when kids make poor choices at school, either behavioral or academic, parents usually get pretty upset. If we are honest, it’s mostly because we think our kids’ bad judgment or irresponsibility reflects poorly on US! But really, their behavior is THEIR “report card” and not ours. As school approaches, take some time to prepare your children to be responsible for themselves this school year.

Prep Your Kids for a Responsible School Year

Can We Get Kids to Say “Sorry” Like They Mean It?

When kids fight, parents typically try to resolve things by telling the kids they have to say they’re sorry.

While parents may be aware that this can be a very shallow, “go through the motions” sort of consequence for kids, they may also struggle to know what to do instead — “How else will my kids know that they should say they’re sorry?”

We can’t make our kids give a heartfelt apology. But we’ve found that not only can kids learn the importance of apologizing and reconciling from the heart, but they can even learn to the point where they value reconciliation enough to mend broken relationships themselves!

In this short 3 minute video, Lynne shares a helpful illustration to explain conflict resolution to kids, and some practical tips for teaching and modeling reconciliation in your home.


Take 15 minutes to learn how to give consequences that teach, rather than simply punish, by downloading our free ebook Consequences That Actually Work.

The Surprising Power of No, Yes, and Why

When our kids do something they’re not supposed to, or ask us for something they can’t have, often our reflexive response is a simple, quick, “No!” And our kids’ reflexive response to “no” can be frustration, resentment, or even a meltdown.

But a look at the Bible gives us another way to respond to our kids — one that still enforces boundaries, but helps kids to grow in wisdom even through the “no”.

Are We Setting Our Kids Up to Be Uncooperative?

Parents can get in ruts. That’s true for me and I’m pretty sure it is for you, too.

One rut that is familiar to many is the hurried race out the door because “we’re going to be late!!” Or how about the chaos of bedtime and the barking of orders that can consistently ensue? In our house lately it’s the questioning of completed homework and interrogating of my kids’ screens that is especially exasperating to all involved.

If we were to video ourselves at these times and watch it through the eyes of our kids, what would we see?

When My Child Asked for an iPod, Here’s What I Said…

Last week I wrote about how my junior high daughter creatively and proactively asked for an iPod by preparing a well-thought-out list of answers to concerns she thought I might have. Here’s the rest of the story!

My daughter’s proactive list was a breath of fresh air and showed me a growing capacity in her to think more broadly about the impact of purchasing the iPod. Her pleasant, non-demanding tone was another sign of her maturity and thoughtful processing of the situation.

Some parents may believe that asking for the iPod in such an impressive manner should gain her access to it immediately. She deserves it, right? Others may view it as a form of my daughter manipulating me to get what she really wanted and saying yes will only mean more of this new “tactic”.

But here’s what happened in our situation:

My Kids’ Messes Drive Me CRAZY!

For years I have struggled with the mess that our lively, spontaneous, creative, frequently disorganized children made at high speed. I used to call it “Trash and Dash.”

Since their father has somewhat more “relaxed” standards of housekeeping than I do, household messes were a constant battle in which I felt hurt, alone, and resentful.

Connected Families on the God-Centered Mom Podcast

Connected Families - God Centered Mom Podcast

Recently we (Jim and Lynne) headed over to chat with Heather at the God Centered Mom Podcast.

Heather is the mom of four boys, and we had a wonderful and lively conversation about everything parenting — from our four core messages of safety, love, capability, and responsibility to how to break the cycle of shame and parent from God’s grace and truth.

You can listen to our conversation in two parts on her blog:

Have a listen and then let us know — what ideas resonate with you the most? Share in the comments!

Do you know any other bloggers or podcasters we should connect with? Send us a note and let us know!