Amber Alert

In God I Still Trust

Do you?

This song is performed by Diamond Rio. Sadly, major radio stations won't play This song because it is considered politically incorrect. Consequently, the song was never released to the public. If this song speaks to your heart, share it with friends and loved ones. Then let us cease being the silent majority and join together -- not as a particular political party, but as Americans!

Check out the song In God We Still Trust by following this link:

Family Minute #42

The Pareto Principle

Discovered in 1906 by the Italian economist, Alfredo Pareto, this business principle says that 80% of your results will come from 20% of your activities. Also called the 80/20 rule, this principle applies to raising children too. Of all the things that sap your time and energy each day, maybe only 20% really matters... so focus on those things. Instead of watching TV, get some exercise with your child. Instead of obsessively cleaning the house, sit with your child and talk about their day. Instead of checking your emails, throw the ball with your child.

Remember, your family first.

Family Minute #41

Want to increase your children’s memory?

Then enroll them in music lessons. That's right. According to a new study, children who learn a musical instrument fare better in memory recall than children with no musical training. In fact, a child's brain wiring starts to change after taking music lessons for just one year. You may even find that your musical children improve in literacy, math and general IQ level. So look for a music teacher or community music program in your area. And don't worry whether your children have natural talent or not -- they don't have to be a Beethoven to reap the benefits of learning music.

Remember, your family first.

10 Commitments of Parenting

Have you heard of the 10 Commitments of Great Parents? Just like the 10 Commandments, these 10 things can make a positive difference in the lives of your children.

One of them is as basic as meeting your kids’ physical needs; others get to the heart and soul of being a great parent.

The Ten Commitments of Great Parents

There are ten commitments that remind us of the most important sacrifices parents can make to raise highly healthy children. These commitments (with perhaps the exception of number 7) are choices each of us can make, regardless of our personal life circumstances.

1. Provide for physical needs. Growing children need healthy diets, adequate clothing, quality health care, and protection from harm.

2. Be there for them. When your children talk to you, turn off the television/computer, face them, and really listen. As much as possible, attend Little League games, school conferences, and band concerts. Your presence, attention, and availability will make a significant difference in the lives of your children.

3. Give them "roots and wings." Children need to try new things. They need the opportunity to try and to learn from the experience. Supportive family "roots" will soften any falls and give them a stable place to land.

4. Balance individuality with absolutes. Each child is unique. Celebrate individual strengths and try to see life from your child's perspective. Show respect for personal preferences and fears. At the same time, operate from the strength of your convictions. Children need the security of unmovable boundaries and guidelines for behavior.

5. Hold them accountable. Children want to do what's right, and they want to be accepted. If they've done wrong, encourage them to make amends. Doing so restores their self-respect and lets them know that their behaviors have consequences.

6. Admit when you're wrong. As parents we make mistakes, and our children can see it -- whether we admit it or not. If we're willing to say, "I blew it; I'm sorry," our children learn that our relationship with them is more important than maintaining the upper hand. It gives them the freedom to admit their mistakes as well. Facing the truth is a key to good emotional health.

7. Love your spouse/significant other/best friend. Your children need the security and example of your love for another.

8. Practice what you preach. Actions speak louder than words. If you tell your children to respect their teachers while you bad-mouth your boss, don't expect good behavior reports at school conference time!

9. Demonstrate a love of learning. If you read for enjoyment and self-improvement, your children are more likely to enjoy learning. Read with them and discuss new ideas to stimulate their thinking. Help your children reach conclusions for themselves. Also, expose your children to new opportunities for learning, such as going to the library, surfing the Internet with them, and taking them to museums.

10. Never give up on them! As our children grow up, some of them will make us think we have done a good job; others may make us wonder if we did anything right at all. The time comes when we have to back off and let our children make their own decisions and mistakes. But we must never stop loving them or encouraging them to be the best they can be.

Adapted from Walt Larimore, MD, and Todd E. Linaman, PhD.

Family Minute #40

How often does your child get your undivided attention?

Too many kids don’t get it enough. When they’re home, their parents are online, on the phone, watching TV or reading. In the car, the radio’s on or that phone is back in the picture. Some parents half listen while doing other things: cleaning, going through paperwork or fixing dinner. Of course, you can’t give your undivided attention all of the time, but you can make a point to stop what you’re doing, look your children in the eye and make them feel like they’re the most important thing in your world.

Because after all... they are.

Remember your family first.

Blogs Can Change Lives

If you’ve spent some time in the blogosphere, you have most likely learned that blogs can and do change lives. This past week the lovely ladies at 5 Minutes for Mom had the chance to change a life and now they want the chance to change another.

This post is an answer to the find another family who truly needs a new laptop and printer. I believe that I qualify for this chance to change some things in my life and the life of my children.

I have done all I can to bring in money so I am on track with bills each month but I'm not having great success. I don't have the money to pay for the extras (though, they are necessities to me and not extras) have all been turned off.

I was renting a desktop computer since my old computer finally died an unrelenting death. The cost was over $200 per month. Since this is way over the current budget, I had to return the computer.

Since my access to a computer and the Internet is sporadic I had to quit the two online jobs that I had because I couldn't meet the deadlines. That was, at this time, half my income. . . the financial situation here continues to get worse.

I currently have sporadic access to the Internet, depending on the generosity of my friends, during this time.

I am currently trying to get Social Security Disability for the following health issues: bipolar, ADD, chronic back pain, fibromyalgia, carpal tunnel, TMJ, IBS, migraines & other chronic headaches, polyneuropathy, and transient global amnesia. In the past two months, heart problems (cannot remember "official" diagnosis) can be added to this long list.

This past month, the insurance company changed their formulary without notice and Cameron was started on a generic version of Risperdal, a mood stabilizer. Unfortunately, the generic chemical formula makes him very aggressive and very very mean. I filed a grievance and found out that I am the 6th family in this area who has experienced this problem. I have spent many days with Cameron having to be right next to me because he cannot be trusted. Two prime examples of how bad its gotten: (1.) he broke the kitchen window, and (2.) he climbed out the bedroom window and was walking around the rooftop. Yikes! We are currently fighting the insurance company for brand necessary medication but for now he is not on the mood stabilizer.

School starts in 9 days. The transition to a school schedule is rough on Cameron.

My son, Cameron, 10, has numerous mental health issues. His diagnosis includes Bipolar, Aspergers, ADHD, ptosis, mild Cerebral Palsy, photosensitivity, PTSD, ODD, OCD, Intermittent Explosive Disorder, and Sensory Integration Disorder. Based on these diagnosis he needs constant care.

I also have a daughter, Cassandra, 7, who has severe asthma and chronic bronchitis. Thankfully, this is well under control.

I am a single mother and with no contact from the fathers so I never get a break from my children with the exception of school.

In the past few weeks I have had many doctor appointments.

I finally went to see a dentist -- yes, I have a major issue with dentists and am deathly afraid of them (stupid, I know) -- and I have many teeth and gum problems. The dentist was nice and his staff stupendous. They do put you to sleep to perform all their dental work which is why I went there. Novocain has very little effect on me. Now we are waiting for approval from the insurance company. I have 6 upcoming appointments to take care of everything. I need two root canals, possibly a third, one tooth removed, gum surgery and a bunch of other stuff that I cannot remember right now.

I am in a very serious depression (and the bipolar as well as the fibromyalgia is really kicking my butt). Yes, all the appropriate medical professionals know.

The nerve damage in my hands has gotten worse so I will be starting PT soon to help my hand and the bursitis in my right shoulder. I see a musculoskeletal specialist in a few weeks too.

This past week I had to have a cardiolite stress test done at the hospital. It was not a good day. I won't bore you with all the ugly details. There is a problem with my heart. . . it is not beating at a regular rhythm. On the 4th of September, I will be having a heart cath and chances are I will have a stent or two placed while I'm there. This terrifies me, especially since I don't help with the kids.

I have a hearing on 9/8/08 in which I am innocent but because of the state of the justice system, I will probably be found guilty because there is no evidence to support me. If you want more information, please email me and I'll get back to you as soon as I can with all the details you want.

There is a hearing on 8/19/08 that I have been subpoenaed to attend. I try to help a friend who has been abused and I get hurt in the end.

If I had the laptop and printer I could work again from home so that I could take care of my son and myself (and my daughter) financially and physically.

Thank you in advance for all the prayers. Thanks for your support and for stopping by my blog.

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