Archives for April 2009

April Giveaway Winner

Large Parent Adventure cover.jpgCongratulations to Kris Buckman, Jennifer C., and Rachel — the winners of our April giveaway!

Each of these readers won a Leader Kit for the new LifeWay parenting resource The Parent Adventure
by Rodney & Selma Wilson. The Leader Kit includes a copy of The Parent Adventure trade book, a member book for the 7-week Bible study based on this resource, and 2 DVDs featuring the authors.

Keep checking our blog for our May giveaway … coming soon!

How Do You Help Kids Learn the Bible?

Large drill photo.jpgIt’s happening in churches all over the United States this week —
state Bible drill competitions! My wife and I both have fond memories
of our days in the Bible drill program in our churches growing up. This
year our son Jonathan had his first experience in Bible drill and
Saturday was our state drill. Kids memorize 25 verses and references,
10 key biblical passages, and all the books of the Bible as part of the
competition. So Bible drill involves both memorization and the skill of
finding Bible books and passages quickly. It was great to see so many
kids who worked so hard at something so worthwhile! 

How do you find out about Bible drill? This article is a great intro to the program. Also, check out information about the entire Bible Skills, Drills, & Thrills line of products here.

Have your kids participated in Bible drill? Tell us about your experience!

It’s About Faith, Baby!

Are you looking for faith-based clothes for your baby or toddler?

44_FaithBabyLogo.jpgCheck out Faith Baby ( Faith Baby, a Christian children’s clothing Web site, promises one-of-a-kind designs to enlighten the heart and celebrate faith. Faith Baby offers high-quality clothes and gifts for babies and toddlers featuring positive messages to rejoice in God’s smallest blessings.
The site offers an alternative to the recent trend of “attitude-wear” for babies by featuring positive messages of Christian faith on onesies, tees, pants and accessories with a stylish, modern sensibility.
Ideal for baby showers, birthdays, baby dedications, or simply to celebrate one’s joy over the birth of a new baby, Faith Baby products are made of super-soft 100% cotton. Onesies come in a variety of colors in sizes from 3 to 6 months to 12 to 18 months. Toddler t-shirts come in four color options in sizes 2T to 4T. The new “frilly” infant pants are one-size fits most from 6 to 12 months, and will soon be available in new color variations.

The ParentLife Advisory Board

43_Advisory_Board.jpgWhat would you like to see in future issues of ParentLife magazine?

We love receiving ideas from our readers through this blog, our Facebook page, Twitter, and by e-mail. But there is another great way that you can help shape future issues of ParentLife — the ParentLife Advisory Board.

The Advisory Board is a group of ParentLife readers that help us by responding to periodic surveys related to ParentLife and its content. We also request ideas from time to time from Advisory Board members as we plan future issues of ParentLife.
There are no fees or obligations. Simply respond to our surveys and e-mails as you have time.

Interested in becoming an Advisory Board Member? If so, click here or on “Join Our Advisory Board” to the right.

In fact, the ParentLife team will be planning the March and April 2010 issues later this week. What topics would you like to see covered? Leave a comment and let us know.

Fun Friday Photo — April 24th, 2009

FunFridayPhoto-April24.jpgDreaming away on a long trip … thanks to Vince’s mom’s imagination and a LOT of socks!!!

Thanks to Stacey P. for this great photo!

Photos wanted! Send us your funny, cute, or just plain fun pictures for our Fun Friday
Photos. Each Friday we will post a new “Fun Friday Photo.” E-mail your photo and a
suggested caption describing the photo to Visit the blog each
Friday to see if your photo was chosen!

Take Your Child to Work Day

todas_logo.jpgIt’s that time of year, again! This year’s Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work® Day is today Thursday, April 23, 2009. If your workplace has not chosen to participate this year, make the commitment today to ask about participating next year or setting an alternative date on the company calendar for later in the year.

Why is taking your child to work important? Designed to be more than a career day, the Take Our Daughters and Sons
to Work program goes beyond the average practice of “shadowing” an
adult. Exposing girls and boys to what a parent or mentor in their
lives does during the work day is important, but showing them the value
of their education, helping them discover the power and possibilities
associated with a balanced work and family life, providing them an
opportunity to share how they envision the future, and allowing them to
begin steps toward their end goals in a hands-on and interactive
environment is key to their achieving success.
The theme for 2009, “Building Partnerships To Educate and Empower,” expresses what the Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work program has done all along – empower children to make more informed decisions about careers and the work/family balance by educating them about the world of work and the possibilities available to them. For over 16 years, the development of new, interactive activities and partnerships has helped the Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work program in taking girls and boys to the future they dream of.

Visit the program’s Web site for more information.

Have you participated in a take your child to work program? Are there other ways you have exposed your kids to different careers?

Showing Grace to Our Kids

Pie graph.jpgIt is so easy to get impatient with our kids! Sometimes I think Dads like myself are short on patience. We want things done right but don’t always take the time to explain and teach our kids the skills necessary to succeed. I found myself reacting with impatience while helping my son study for a math test today. We were doing fine until we hit the pie graphs — yikes! Fractions are one thing, but I found interpreting them through a pie graph was not as easy for my son. I wasn’t sure if he wasn’t getting it or just was not trying hard enough to understand! So I began to get impatient.

Times like these remind me that it is best to err on the side of grace in our dealings with others, especially our kids. After all, I would want the same grace extended to me! And since today I found myself, in addition to not being a perfect father, not being a perfect leader or friend or spouse. Notice the theme here? Much like the Golden Rule from the Sermon on the Mount, I need to show grace to others in the same way I want grace extended back to me. Whether that is in relationship issues, life on the job, or those evil pie charts, God has shown grace to us moment by moment. God calls us to do the same with our kids!
Are there times when you need to show extra grace to your kids? What are the triggers or areas of life where you have to guard yourself against reacting with impatience?

Guard Against Sports Injuries

AAP banner.jpgIt’s that time of year again when the weather is getting warmer and kids are filling soccer fields and baseball diamonds for spring sports. Do you know how to prevent sports injuries in your kids? Here are some great tips brought to you by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP).

Injury Risks
All sports have a risk of injury. In general, the more contact in a sport, the greater the risk of injury.

Most injuries occur to ligaments (connect bones together), tendons (connect muscles to bones) and muscles. Only about 5 percent of sports injuries involve broken bones. However, the areas where bones grow in children are at more risk of injury during the rapid phases of growth. In a growing child, point tenderness over a bone should be evaluated further by a medical provider even if minimal swelling or limitation in motion is appreciated.

Most frequent sports injuries are sprains (injuries to ligaments) and strains (injuries to muscles), caused when an abnormal stress is placed on tendons, joints, bones and muscle. As always, contact your pediatrician if you have additional questions or concerns.

To reduce injury:
•    Wear the right gear. Players should wear appropriate and properly fit protective equipment such as pads (neck, shoulder, elbow, chest, knee, shin), helmets, mouthpieces, face guards, protective cups, and/or eyewear. Young athletes should not assume that protective gear will protect them from performing more dangerous or risky activities.
•    Strengthen muscles. Conditioning exercises before games and during practice strengthens muscles used in play.
•    Increase flexibility. Stretching exercises before and after games or practice can increase flexibility.
•    Use the proper technique. This should be reinforced during the playing season.
•    Take breaks. Rest periods during practice and games can reduce injuries and prevent heat illness.
•    Play safe. Strict rules against headfirst sliding (baseball and softball), spearing (football), and body checking (ice hockey) should be enforced.
•    Stop the activity if there is pain.
•    Avoid heat injury. Drink plenty of fluids before, during and after exercise or play; decrease or stop practices or competitions during high heat/humidity periods; wear light clothing.

The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 60,000 pediatricians focused on the care of children. Check out their great Parenting Corner for the latest medical information for your child.

Are your kids playing a sport this spring?

Fun Friday Photo — April 17, 2009

FunFridayPhoto-April17.jpgBenjamin (2) and Hannah (3) showing off their cool shades

Thanks to Christy and Daniel D. for this great photo!

Photos wanted! Send us your funny, cute, or just plain fun pictures for our Fun Friday
Photos. Each Friday we will post a new “Fun Friday Photo.” E-mail your photo and a
suggested caption describing the photo to Visit the blog each
Friday to see if your photo was chosen!

Be Prepared for Disaster

In the last week, tornadoes have ripped through several areas of the Southeast, leaving a path of destruction. Nearby in Murfreesboro, Tennessee, hundreds of homes were destroyed or damaged. Events like these beg the question: Are you prepared in case of emergency?

Red Cross logo.gifThe American Red Cross is committed to help families be prepared for emergencies of any kind that strike unexpectedly. The Red Cross urges families to prepare an emergency supply kit filled with three days of supplies to have on hand in case of emergency. Families also should make a plan of where to meet in case of emergency. In general, families should talk through what to do in case of the unexpected.

Please read Andrew Greer’s “Ready or Not: Are You Prepared for an Emergency?” in the April 2009 ParentLife for more information about preparing your family for disaster.

What steps have you taken to prepare your family?