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Challenge: Parenting Resolutions

Three realistic family resolutions for 2016

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As I get ready for the New Year I've made up my mind. I'm not making ANY unrealistic resolutions. In fact I'm not making any just for me. I know myself too well and know this is gonna take a team effort. If you're lousy at changing personal habits and committing to something new on your own consider making a "family resolution". Here are some I thought of based on things I constantly tell myself I "should" or "shouldn't" do.

The "Don't" Diet: It's 0 calories but I've found lately that this four little word is making me feel bad inside. I catch all of us around the house saying it A LOT. I see my kids repeating it in their own actions towards each other. We say it so often I'm afraid the term has been watered down. I want to reserve it for really serious moments. Talking with my husband together we're going to try to set the example by replacing 'don't' with more positive reminders like "Please be a great big sister" oppose to "Don't say that to your brother." Don't say don't-- I admit this could be harder than it sounds!

Unplug Day: Collectively my family spends hours touching and watching screens all day. We're on our devices for work, school, sports, fun, pretty much everything. Together as a family we've taken the pledge to unplug one day a week. No ipads, apps, phones, TV for a day. That means we can spend that time going to the local library, doing puzzles, playing board games or baking. In this digital age there's all this talk about enagement. What about engaging with each other more - one on one. I'm hoping that will be the biggest benefit. I've built a craft corner. Different crafts in boxes stacked in the dining room with a goal to pull one from the stack to try every day or so. If it's out in the open the more likely you'll do it!

Journaling: I really believe putting it on paper is a powerful life tool. I started writing in my diary in 1988.I recently went back to it to find some funny stuff to post on facebook for #tbt and realized there were gaps, years between entries. The reality is life gets busy and it seems we just don't have the extra time to write things down anymore. That's why I want to make it a goal in 2016. My kids are still young (2 and 5) and I think a family journal will be a great bonding activity. It will not only reinforce the present, it will also give me a hands-on record of life events. In this digital age where memories can be lost in endless camera rolls the idea of having something you can touch and hold on to seems like a treasure.

Resolution: Don't say

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