Posted in Writing Prompts

Simply 6 Minutes- Fathers Know Best

Today’s photo prompt:

“To him that will, ways are not wanting.”
Ajit’s father’s oft repeated words were etched into his brain. His name, after all, was from Sanskrit meaning “unbeatable” serving as further proof of his father’s lifelong devotion to that mantra.
So, when Ajit’s wagon wheel came off while he lugged the foundation for his “wedding shed” toward home, he borrowed the closest vehicle he found to complete his cumbersome task. Putting his Engineering degree to good use, he was able to stack every brick on a commandeered bicycle and unsteadily crept homeward.
With his view mostly blocked, he didn’t notice his father gaining on him from behind.
“Well! What do we have here?”
His father’s commanding voice startled him and the delicate balance he’d been artfully managing, fell apart. Bricks littered the worn path as he fell face-first into the dirt!
The elder could not contain his laughter!
“Son, I’m certain you could have found a better way. Attempting to outsmart the basic rules of Physics leaves engineers with dirt on their faces every time. Remember that! “

[with edits, this took closer to 15 minutes]

Posted in In my humble opinion...

Building Self-esteem

133If you’ve ever watched a baby struggling to take her first steps, you’ve watched an exercise in self-esteem building. The struggle leading to sweet success is written on her face.

Parents waving and clapping make the event super fun yet the glow of satisfaction, the child exhibits, comes quite instinctively. It’s from the sense of accomplishment that baby feels.

Our modern society understands that self-esteem is very valuable to a healthy whole person, but sometimes, the zeal of parents, endeavoring to promote this, actually has a counter-productive effect.

The biggest misconception, about self-esteem, is that it stems from happiness. The happiness on baby’s face (above) is the end result of her struggles, bumps, and mistakes. It is not the cause of her satisfaction.

cleanup 451lips

I don’t know one mother who has not felt mortified by the realization that it’s “library day”, at school, and her child’s book has been left behind on the kitchen table. Take heart mom…your child will survive the trauma. She will learn, also, that responsibility for her own happiness comes from herself.  I speak from experience and my own mistakes. In hind-sight, I thought “good” moms smoothed the path leading to their children’s success. This was not a wise philosophy for building independence and responsible behavior.

It is clear to me, now, that self-esteem lives alongside of feeling capable. We learn much more from our mistakes and, by resolving, not to repeat them. This advice is directed toward new moms. Bite your tongue, and let your child fail while they are young and their problems (very big to them at the time) are not so big. Be there to help them design a better approach but avoid being the answer.

Katherine age 5
Katherine age 5

Hey, every parent makes mistakes. This is why they get a second chance with grandchildren. 😉

Posted in Susan's Family Day Care

What’s the BIG DEAL?

The Big Deal (TV channel)
The Big Deal (TV channel) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Kids are, by nature, defiant. Check.

Kids will, one day, find out you are not able to supervise them every minute. Check.

Kids, especially preschoolers, function primarily on reverse psychology. Check.

These are universal truths that I am proclaiming, (and believe), in order to continue this train of thought.

It is a wonderful event when a parent embraces their role. I say,”Lucky kids.”

So what’s the BIG deal? Parents who make a BIG deal over little things.

  • Mom at bank counter raising her eyebrows and voice over the offering of a sugary treat to her child.
  • Dad becoming visibly shocked when baby daughter disrobes in front of boys.
  • A parent’s agony over the third word added to their child’s vocabulary. ( The word is “NO!” soon to be replaced by “why?”.)

Making a BIG deal over small, innocent events make them BIG deals. Big deals play badly with defiant, devious persons who specialize in rebellion. The knowledge that these things bother their parents gives little kids magnificent power. The BIG DEAL making improves the odds that kids will remember and use them again.

Case #567

I have a day care parent who wisely supervises her 5-year-old child’s TV viewing. The parent does not want her daughter concerned with the dating and teenage antics on Teen Nick programs. Again, great parenting philosophy that I agree with!

This parent has scoffed and sputtered about the subject in front of the 5-year-old on a regular basis. That 5-year-old is the only kid who changes my TV channel specifically to Teen Nick. Even the older kids, in my charge, ignore that the programming even exists. I rest my case…

In summary, being a diligent parent of young children, does not require the “making a Big Deal” attitude. In fact, you may be undermining your own goals.

BTW- Parents will have plenty of BIG DEAL opportunities when their kids become teenagers.

Posted in Sideshows

To Dabble or not to dabble?

There are so very many fun challenges on WordPress. Some offer creative writing topics, poetry and photography too.

I am enjoying an ever widening circle of friends and interests BUT there are only so many minutes afforded for me to use creatively.

Finally, this week, I am feeling as though I have stepped from newbie to intermediate blogger. It took much dabbling and time.  Many kind fellow bloggers have offered their advice and knowledge helping me along. So this is my “two cents” to others. 🙂

Many challenges ask for committed responses…taking time.

Awards are so special but …take time to post and re-post.

Poetry, photography, and story writing have called to me from different directions. For short spurts, I specialized in them. This helped me to find my voice and polish my technical blogging skills. I still have much to learn…

This message is to other bloggers in the same quandary. Not enough time? Don’t feel guilty…write on!

I think dabbling is the right thing to do. My advice is not to get “roped” into any one venue. Dabble, dabble dabble your way forward.

Posted in Sideshows, Susan's Family Day Care

Racing with Babies

Think you’re fast? I once held the Jr. High girls record for the 50 yard dash. I am 55 years old now but inside, I haven’t aged. My outside, doesn’t care though.

Toddlers are faster than racehorses out of the starting gate. A hard thing  for we adults, with an athletic inner self, to believe. Try this experiment before you supervise toddlers. In the middle of a playground, kick a ball away from a 20 month old and then try to get your hands on him as he pursues the ball. Of course, allow them two steps for the normal delay when distracted.  Repeat this experiment until you can grab them in under one second.

Ha! It’s impossible!

I wouldn’t have bet against myself. How hard could that be?

Yikes!  Several seconds too many to save them in a parking lot or driveway. Yup, don’t ever underestimate a toddler’s power to evade capture especially in a “high octane” situation.

You want to know a pet peeve of mine? Parents who think the “I’m gonna get you game.” is funny.

Some of my day care toddlers think that diaper changing is an invitation to a foot race. Even in the house, it takes a long time to corner them.
THAT is something I won’t allow. Voice control can save a child’s life. My “racers” are given no second chance to come. I pick them up in an unfriendly manner and make them mind when I ask them to come. I offer no tolerance and always enforce that one rule. Their life may likely depend on it.

So take this as a warning. Especially Dads and Grandparents who are more likely to underestimate toddlers, try my experiment and pretend that you are in a parking lot. It just may scare the “bejeezus” out of you!

(I believe that my experiment should be a MUST for teens in babysitting training!)

Posted in Kid Story Ideas, Sideshows, Words 'n' such Poetry

I Double Doubt it!

If your friend says she’s an astronaut

Has been to outer space,

If your cousin ate NO cookies

yet has chocolate on his face.

If things just seem peculiar

And you don’t know what to do?

I’d say,”I double doubt it.”, if I were you.


A neighbor may pretend to know

The way things ought to be.

Your Mom describes the dinner fish

As chicken from the sea.

If things seem quite extraordinary

As well as, far from true,

I’d say,”I double doubt it.”, if I were you.


Pegasus and Dumbo can fly

In make-believe.

Magicians often have some tricks

Hidden up their sleeve.

If someone says, “Jump off this bridge

and I will follow too.”

I’d say, “I double doubt it,

Now, after you!”