SHAKING MY HEAD…IT’S ALL I CAN DO #RRBC

I woke up this morning to a story on GOOD MORNING AMERICA, that simply broke my heart.  Two little teenage girls were found dead on Tuesday, after having been dropped off by family on Monday (as the reports state), for a two hour hiking adventure.

You know, my daughters are young adults now, and I wouldn’t allow them to be dropped off anywhere, especially in some isolated place such as this, without adult (strong) supervision.  I mean, what is it going to take for us to wake up and realize that we live in a much different world than we did 40 years ago?  We can’t be this lax with our kids.  We can’t allow them to do these kinds of things, just because they want to. We can’t allow them such freedom, simply because we feel that they have to spread their wings and experience everything.  WE. JUST. CAN’T.

These babies were 13 and 14…who felt that they were old enough, or mature enough to handle all that they could have possibly encountered alone on this trail?  I just can’t wrap my mind around any of this!

My daughters were never dropped off at the movies…when they wanted to go, my husband and I were right there, sitting way above them in the same theater.  There were no drop-offs at the mall.  When they had to meet their friends for mall shopping trips, one of us, if not both of us, were right there, tagging far behind…but close enough to keep our eyes on them. (In my parenting guide, THE GOOD MOMMIES’ GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS, one of the tips suggests saying NO to drop-offs.)  There will be plenty of time for them to experience such things.

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I cried after hearing the story above, I mean, I’m still in tears now.  My heart breaks for the parents, but I would just like to know WHY?

Parents, it’s time to wake up.  I almost said it’s time for US to wake up, but I cannot and will not place myself in that number.  You see, when these horrific acts are committed against our babies, I NEVER FORGET.  These images are forever engraved in my mind and because they are, I hold my babies tighter and tighter each time.  You people can call it what you want but because of the way that I hold mine, if they are nothing else, they are SAFE!

Here are some of the articles:

*Missing Girls Found Dead

*Daily Mail

What are some of the things you do to keep your kids safe?  Please share so that others might benefit from your experience in these areas.

 

Some Parents Ought to be Jailed! #RRBC

I like to bring awareness to lots of social “ills” as I call them, and a lack of awareness into everything your child is doing or is involved in, is one of the greatest ills affecting today’s society.

I know that we have a new wave of those very opinionated folks who have tagged moms like me as “helicopter” parents.  What I say to those “negative Nellys” is this:  my children aren’t running wild in the streets, they’re not getting into trouble “anywhere,” they’re not at risk of being “snatched” off the street, because they’re not on the street and surely, at this age, they were tucked safely away in their beds, without the possibility of being able to get up and just walk away from our home.

Take a look at this video, start to pay a little more attention and let this video move you so much, that you are a much better, and more attentive parent than you were before you saw it.  #WakeUpPeople

Nothing Like Sibling Love, #RRBC #Parenting

I opened my eyes this morning to another segment of GOOD MORNING AMERICA!  Although some mornings, the first thing I see isn’t the greatest of news, and although this one started off no differently, it quickly turned into my feel good story of the day.

Before I share too much, for those of you who haven’t yet seen this, take a look:

Although I have watched this video now around 15 times, the beginning is extremely hard to watch and I shudder each time I see the dresser tipping over.  The reason I love this story ever so much, is because of the love I see when this TODDLER saves his brother’s life.  At that age, he doesn’t even run off to get help from his parents…NO, he knows that his brother is in distress and he is not going to leave him in that position.  I CRIED WHEN I SAW THIS!  (Before I move on from the video clip, does anyone else believe that an angel moved that dresser?  Think about it…news reports said the dresser was well over 100 lbs.  What 2 yr old do you know could move that amount of weight?  I rest my case at…an angel was in the room).

Everyone who knows me, know that I am a big proponent of sibling love.  In my mind and my world (therefore in my home), there is nothing more important, and there should never be a bond as tight, as that among siblings.  In the Jules home, I call it “SISTER LOVE.”

I have raised my daughters to know that when Daddy and I are gone, all that they will have, will be each other.  Yes, they have many cousins and other relatives, but in the grand scheme of things, from our little family, it will just be the two of them.

When my daughters were small, I would pray to GOD each day, that he kept my husband and I here (or, at least one of us), until my eldest daughter was of legal age to care for the other, should we not be able to.  That way, they’d never have to go into the care of another family member, who may not have raised their kids the way we had raised ours. (And, mind you, I don’t know of one family member who has raised their kids the way mine have been raised). Why was this so important to me?  Well, not being under the influence of another’s way of parenting, they’d retain their values and morals which we had instilled in them.  Even now, I thank GOD every day for this answered prayer.

So, this is how that drill has played out (and continues to play out in our home):

*There will be no fighting, and should there be, you make up quickly;

*You wake each morning with a “Good morning kiss, and a hug”

*You go to bed each night after a “Good night kiss, and a hug”

*She should be your maid/matron of honor in your wedding, and you better be the same in hers;

*If you become a millionaire, she better become one, too;

*If you have, she should never be in need

*Never, ever put anyone before your sister.

(I’ve used the word better above, because I’ve also drilled into them that if these things don’t happen and I’m not here, I’ll be coming back to haunt them in the worst way possible!…LOL)

My daughters are almost ten years apart in age and people have always asked, more-so now because they are adults, “How did you get them to be so close?” Well, did you just read all that information I shared above?  These were, and continue to be daily mantras coming from my mouth, and going into their ears.  They probably hear me saying these words even when they’re sleeping.  Again, this is how I have raised them since the second daughter came along, and if you want your children/grandchildren to be close, you should stress the same…always.

As The Good Mommies Mommy, I always stress that #Consistency is key.

To close, I hope you will take my advice and do the following…if you haven’t spoken to your own sibling(s) today or even in the past 30 years, now would be a good time to pick up the phone.  Go on, reconnect…learn to love each other again.  It’s never too late.  Let them know, and make them feel, that should the dresser ever tip over and fall on top of them, you, even in your old age, will somehow FIND the strength, to save them.

I’d love to hear about your sibling relationships below.  Your story just might help another connect or reconnect with their own sibling(s).

**If you enjoyed this content, I ask that you Follow my blog before you leave as well as my Twitter account at @AskTheGoodMommy.**

What Kind of Mom Are You Anyway? #RRBC

I have a friend who is a staunch Republican (but I don’t hold that against her and I still love her very much, anyway!). She says, “No, I’m very Conservative,” but, I won’t bore you with the details of that argument.

Every morning that I open my eyes, I call or text her just to rile her up about Trump.  But, today was a different kind of day, and I found myself angered at the thought of any mom of daughters, being able to vote for this person.  (I could call him a Lunatic or a Mad-Man, but I like to choose my labels very carefully before I go applying them.  I mean, there could be better adjectives out there that I could use, right?)  Well, I’m saving them for later.

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So, I posed these questions to her today via text:

“How can ANY Mother of daughters be OK with a so-called man becoming President who degrades, demeans, and thinks and speaks so poorly of women?  How can ANY Mother of daughters feel safe with a lunatic in office, as leader of the free world, who has publicly stated that it’s OK to “grab women by the P#$%^” and “because you’re a celebrity, they’ll let you do it?”  At some point, some people need to give up their hatred of the other party and realize how freaking CRAZY this arse-hole is, and that our Daughters will suffer and not be safe under his regime.  I don’t care what race your daughter comes from, SHE WILL suffer and not be safe with him as President.  And then, how will staunch Republican Moms explain to their Daughters, that they put him in that office because they hated the Democratic party so much?”

Her response:

“Ha Ha!  I am not okay with any man or woman that degrades or dehumanizes any human being.  I believe both of our candidates are guilty of doing these things.  Donald Trump has apologized and has admitted shame for his actions. (That’s what abusive husbands do after they’ve battered their wife’s face up so badly that she’s unrecognizable, and then they turn around and do it again) Hillary Clinton has not.  I personally believe, based on factual evidence, that Hillary and Bill are corrupt and I will not vote for corruption to run our country.”  

dog-shocked

NJ:  Sooooooo, crazy running our country is better?

She continues:  “Both parties hate Donald Trump (I assume she’s speaking of the Clintons).  If he has done anything criminal we would have found out a long time ago.  Why will I not vote Democrat?  I believe it promotes Socialism/Communism, which I consider to be immoral structures that steal from working citizens-steals their money, property, and freedom through taxation without representation.”

Whew!  She finally takes a breath!  But, all that didn’t stop me from picking up the phone and calling her.  It was time to take this debate LIVE!

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“Mitzi, my dear friend (names have been changed to protect the delusional), I’d like to point out where you have totally contradicted yourself, but first, you already know that I stand firm in all that I believe in.  In your defense of Trump’s behavior towards women, you stated:  “I am not okay with any man or woman that degrades or dehumanizes any human being,” yet, you are adamant about supporting Trump, in spite of what you heard him say.  Being NOT OK with something, means that you OPPOSE it, you are AGAINST it, you REBUKE it, and there is no way that you are going to aid in furthering it’s cause.

All who know me, know that without a shadow of a doubt, I am firmly convicted in the things that I believe in, and when I oppose something, you can bet your bottom dollar that it will never wear my support.  My friend’s way of thinking, is a perfect example of STANDING FOR SOMETHING OR FALLING FOR ANYTHING.  She says she does not agree with what he has said OR his behavior of women, yet she’s going to vote for him anyway.  Does this make sense to any of you?  Because it makes absolutely zero sense to me.

Mitzi shared with me one day, that she had to vote for someone and that there were no other choices.  Hmmmm, what about that Jill Stein (Green Nominee) and that Gary Johnson (Libertarian Nominee)?  Poor things, they are unfortunately on our ballot of evildoers and crooks, aren’t they?  But, she wouldn’t vote for them, because as I mentioned earlier, she’s a staunch Republican…the ones who vote straight Republican no matter their views on anything!   I can’t say that there is much that frightens me in this world, but people who have that kind of mentality…puts me right smack dead in the middle of the original “THE HILLS HAVE EYES” movie.  And, that movie scares the heeby-jeebies out of me!

So, here is my question to all you other moms (or fathers) of daughters, who are staunch Republicans (undercover Conservatives):  are you bothered enough by the things that Trump has said about women, someone else’s daughters, that you are going to give him a pass (BECAUSE HE APOLOGIZED), and vote for him anyway?  OR, since folks have said that Hillary is evil, are you going to vote for the lesser evil?  All politics aside, at this point, my only concern is that a man who thinks the way that he does, could possibly rule in a world where my beautiful daughters reside.

If your answer to my question above is “YES,” my next question might make you a tad uncomfortable…WHAT KIND OF MOM ARE YOU ANYWAY???!!!  And if you’re curious, I had a horribly ugly frown on my face in your direction, when I asked the question.

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(No, it didn’t look like this…he’s just confused at your way of thinking)

You don’t have to reveal your political party preference here, but what is your take on STANDING FOR SOMETHING OR FALLING FOR ANYTHING?  Are you truly convicted in the things that you believe in, or, are you a fence-straddler or a lean-in-whichever- direction-the-wind-is-blowing kind of person?

Whichever you are, don’t be afraid to share with us in the comments section below.  Healthy, respectful debates never hurt anyone.  Actually, they only help us grow and give us insight into the mind-set of others.

Thanks for dropping by!

Whatever Happened to the ‘Village’? #RRBC

Block Party 2016 banner

Thanks for dropping by my little place here in Shreveport, Louisiana.  I hope to get your opinion on the topic below.  Please join in the discussion by leaving your comment and you automatically get an entry into my giveaway pool!

Giveaways: 

(1) $10 Amazon Gift Card

(1) 5 Amazon Gift Card

***

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I’m writing today because I’d like your opinion on something.  Recently, while speaking to a mom of a teen-age daughter, I found myself embroiled in a discussion which caused me great angst. I mean, the conversation literally caused me to go into full migraine headache mode (my poor head).

This mom of a 15 year old who delivered a baby a few months ago, shared with me how her daughter’s newborn son, accompanies his teen-age mother to school every day.  Confused, I asked, “Well, how can she focus on her schoolwork if she has to care for the baby at the same time?”  This mom then shared that the entire school district where her daughter attends school, has a nursery/daycare on the campus of every high school in the district to accommodate teen moms.  After hearing this, I went completely numb.  Hence the beginning of our discussion (debate).  I  mean, if your conversation is going to cause me to go numb, then you can bet your bottom dollar, we’re gonna talk  about it!

I shared with her my disappointment in hearing this, and how I  whole-heartedly disagree with the idea of daycare centers on high school campuses.  I said, “If a school district has to have daycare centers on EVERY HIGH SCHOOL CAMPUS in their district, then they have a major problem with teen-age pregnancies.  The focus then, in my opinion, should not be on adding daycare centers to school campuses and accommodating these teenagers, but on how to rectify the major problem…that of the number of teen pregnancies of their female student body.”

In my opinion (and as you can see, I have lots of these), having daycare centers on these school campuses is like slapping a band-aid on an open sore…it’s not going to heal the real problem, just cover it up, so to speak.  Instead of spending that money on campus daycare centers, how about putting it to even greater use…like educating these girls in a different manner on how these poor decisions will impact their lives and their entire futures.  How about we put that money into special programs to teach these girls how NOT TO become teen-age moms?  I mean, since the school is offering free childcare for these teenage moms, what’s going to keep them from repeating the act?  What’s going to keep them from going off having another…and another, and yet another?  Who’s policing these possible serial teenage moms?

Here is where we should all begin to miss “the villages” of old…the ones that it took to raise a child;  the ones that cared enough to go above and beyond, to do whatever it took to ensure that not only their kids, but all the kids around them, excelled at life?  What happened to those?

I often hear people say “Times have changed,” but you know what, just because the world is changing in every arena, doesn’t mean you have to.  I know you saw this one coming, but if all the world decides to one day drink poison and lay down on the ground and die, are you going to join them?  What about that cliff ahead?  I see they’re all getting ready to jump…have you suddenly sprouted wings, too?  I would like to think that you have your own mind, you think with your own mind, and you would make up your own mind to do the right thing if you were ever faced with either of these situations.  Just because some feel as if it’s ‘old fashioned’ and “no one does that anymore,” doesn’t mean you have to buy into that common mentality.

Stand for something, or you will fall for anything.  Remember having that drilled into your head as a child?  I do.  Again, I ask, where have those villages gone?

I’d like to hear from you.  What are your thoughts on these high-school campus daycare centers?  Are they encouraging more of the same or, are they meeting a very serious problem head on?

***

Here’s a solution to the problem…

TGMG on BN counter med

“THE GOOD MOMMIES’  GUIDE TO RAISING (ALMOST) PERFECT DAUGHTERS”

(During a recent phone conversation with an old friend of mine, she asked:  “You’re not a grandma yet?”  I replied:  “Have you received a wedding invitation from us?”  She said, “No.”  I responded, “Well, if you haven’t received a wedding invite first, then you shouldn’t be expecting a baby announcement.”  You see, in our home, the cart doesn’t go before the horse.)

#HighStandardsInOurHome

#EvenHigherExpectations

***

To follow the rest of the tour, click HERE!

For autographed paperback copies, click HERE!

You’re a Bad Parent… #RRBC

…or maybe you’re not!

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I know, the pic above is hilarious, but my daughters sent this to me!  Huge hint, you think?

Tuesday, July 26th was PARENT’S DAY!  I missed wishing you all the best day, so I thought I’d share a little post with you.

Many often wonder what separates a bad parent from a good parent.  In my mind, a very thin line is all.  But, I’m going to give you my 5 Top Tips of Good Parenting and if you can’t handle these, then we’re going to have to ask you to return your PARENTING LICENSE.  (Oh, I forgot, the law doesn’t require those, even though they should).  Here goes:

5 TOP TIPS FOR  PARENTING TEENS:

*BE A GOOD LISTENER.  Do you ever respond to your child with those horrible words your own parents used to throw at you…“Because I said so?”  The memories of those words haunt me to this day.  I hated hearing (my mom) say that, and boy, did she say it often.  As a parent now, I have realized (thanks to my teenager who keeps me grounded) that “Because I said so,”  is not a response, nor is it a proper response.  When our kids come to us with their issues or questions and concerns, they are looking for solid answers from the people they are taught to trust, respect (and listen to) the most…their parents.  Learn to listen intently to their concerns so that you are fully able to form a positive, clear, intelligent response;  one that will lead them in the right direction and not drive them into the arms of others whose responses may not be in their best interest;

*AIM TO BE THEIR BEST PARENT…NOT THEIR BEST FRIEND.  Many parents spend so much time trying to be their kid’s best friend, that they lose sight of their real position, that of Parent.  Yes, we want our kids to think we’re “cool” and that we understand all they’re going thru, etc., and that’s OK.  But, what happens when you have to step out of BEST FRIEND mode and guide them in the right direction…which you can only do in BEST PARENT mode?  What do you do then?  You see, your kid’s friends are their age and they all have the same issues.  And because they have the same issues, if they are advising each other, it’s like the blind leading the blind.  I remember some of the kids who grew up with my daughters, the ones who didn’t have traditional parents, the ones whose parents partied with them and drank with them, and allowed them “too much freedom.”  I would often hear them say to my daughters, “I wish I had a mom like that,”  or “I wish my mom was like your mom.”  You see, no matter how often they say that “we’re not cool,”  or “we just don’t understand,”  they really do want us in PARENT MODE with them.  It is only in that mode that they feel protected by us…and safe. If you make it a habit to always “stay in your lane” (as the kids put it), the Parenting Lane, that is, then you will nurture the relationship as it should be.  Believe me, you have plenty of time to become their BEST FRIEND.  My timetable says that should be when they are adults, and maybe with kids of their own;

*ALWAYS REMAIN CALM.  Being a good listener is the best way to develop great rapport with your kids.  When your kids come to you for advice, no matter the topic (boys, girls, sex, relationships, drugs, etc.) listen to them and fully take in what they are communicating to you.  Your response to what they are sharing, is the make or break as to how they will handle their situations.  Don’t interrupt while they’re speaking, think before you respond, and above all else, remember that yelling is never the answer.  Don’t become part of their storm.  Be their calm, so that when their storm hits, their “emergency kit” will be filled with all the right tools to weather it;

*MODEL WHAT YOU WANT THEM TO DO AND BECOME.  Television, radio, social media and even friends at times, offer such negative influences that you want to remove it all from your child’s world.  I’ve been there myself, where I’ve heard of a profanity-laced TV show or one filled with too much kissing and ‘other stuff,’ that I’ve said to my kids “Nope, we won’t be watching that.”   That being said, I allowed my wonderful kids to watch shows like SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS and THE SIMPSONS, which other parents forbade in their homes.   Because my daughters were taught the difference between right and wrong from the very beginning and consistently, I wasn’t the least bit worried about them picking up any bad habits from these shows, but I did appreciate the fact that there was such humor in the shows, that my children, with us, appreciated the laughs.  We love “funnies” in our home, so these were shows we enjoyed together.  Actually, we all still watch SPONGEBOB, even today.  I’ve said all this to say that WE modeled what we wanted them to become.  Profanity is not allowed in our home, we don’t drink or smoke, we have open and ‘honest’ discussions, and we treat each other and those outside our home, with kindness and respect.  We not only talked the talk, we walked the walk and that is what you should do, as a good parent;

*LOVE, LOVE, LOVE THEM, UNCONDITIONALLY.  I’ve heard parents say that sometimes, the poor behavior of their children makes them hard to love.  Although I’ve never felt this emotion, I’ve seen some kids who have put their parents thru the ringer, so I can definitely believe it.  I recently heard of a book called  HOW TO HUG A PORCUPINE and to my understanding, the premise of the book is that kids in their formative tween and full teen years, don’t really welcome the loving hugs and attention they craved as babies and toddlers.  My daughters get so many hugs, kisses and so much love daily, that they probably want to run in the other direction when they see me coming towards them.  And although they pretend as if they don’t like it, they really do.  I know this because when my oldest was away at college, she once said “Believe it or not, but I miss you kissing me all the time.”  My youngest said to me recently, “I’m going to miss sitting on your lap and snuggling with you when I wake each morn and before I go to bed at night.”  See, proof they like it!  So, go on, hug your porcupines!  They secretly love you doing so and don’t worry, their pines aren’t that prickly.

Do you have some great parenting tips to share?  You know we all could use some!  Thanks for dropping by!

 

 

So, Think I’m Paranoid Now? #RRBC #Parenting

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With all of the negativity and racial unrest going on in the world lately, taking up space in every little corner of our lives, I somehow failed to catch a story about a recent attempted abduction of a child.

Now, when I hear about lax-parenting or parents who allow their kids to run off here and there and everywhere without supervision, etc., I say “People steal kids and I don’t want anyone stealing my beautiful babies so I keep a very close eye on them.” Is there laughter after folks hear me saying that “people steal kids?” Of course!  And, tons of it;  as if it is so unfathomable that children can be stolen, just like cars or other replaceable things.  Well, please take a close look at the footage below (and don’t blink, because you just might miss something) and then we’ll talk…

 

I love my daughters with a love that is truly indescribable, and admittedly, I like to keep them close, because then I know they’re safe.  I watch my daughter walk to her car when she’s getting ready to leave for work or school;  even though she parks inside of our garage, I want to know that she’s getting out of the car and walking into the house, and if I’m dropping my youngest at work, I wait for her to get completely inside the building before I pull away.

So many parents have said to me that “You can’t watch them all the time,” or “You have to let them go off and do other things away from you.” Although I agree with these at times, I am still from the thought process that too many parents, are just a little too lax in their parenting.

Too much is happening in the world today for us to not keep a very watchful eye on the ones we love the most, especially our innocent babies. In the blink of an eye, our children are gone, and this applies more to just the fact that they are getting ready to leave for college.

I am in no way saying that this mom was at fault for what happened to her child, although knowing me the way that I do, my baby, who stands 6’3 inches tall and is almost an adult, would have been standing right next to me in line, and she would have been standing on the side farthest away from the door.  I am in no way blind to the fact that there are real “crazies” in this world.   #Smart #NotParanoid.  I am just sharing the proof that’s clearly swimming around in the pudding…people really do “steal” children!

Believe me now?