Thursday, August 14, 2008


Thursday, August 14, 2008
It's fitting that my birthstone is diamonds. I won't lie, I love a good sparkler. But when we talk about GEMS in our house it's not of the precious stone variety, but rather Genuine Encounter Moments (I wish I could give proper credit here but I can't recall the person who shared this concept with me. I do admit, it's not my original idea. Record straight?).

I have three lovely children; six, five and 21 months. It can be busy at times and the ability to truly connect with each individual child is sometimes marred. So, I desperately and consciously try to have GEMs as often as possible.

That means I give that child focused attention. I am not on the phone, or blogging, or... but taking a moment to look them in the eye, intently listen to their thoughts and connect. Don't get me wrong, we talk all day long and I spend very little time on the phone (the blogging is another story but I do try to limit that to times I am not "on duty"). But the day can quickly get away from me without making a genuine connection with my kiddos and showing them that I value them all the way to putting down my laundry basket.

I know it can sound silly and maybe even basic, like, duh, isn't that what being a parent is? Perhaps it's just me, but I am reminded of how they each need to feel important. And incidentally, the payoffs are great. There is less attention seeking behavior that usually lands them in time out. And I don't like to be the grrrrry mom. That's no fun for anyone.

With that little concentrated, maybe two minute attention moments, they are good for a long while to make a project on their own or swing a little swing or just hunt for caterpillars. They aren't pulling at my pant legs desiring that I give them the time of day. They feel loved and I think their self-confidence is improved.

So it's not the amount of time I spend with them, although we are a very togetherness family, but the moments I spend here and there really connecting. Try it. Let me know if you see a difference.

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