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Technology, the Big Debate

 

So what is the right age for a tablet, computer, phone, maybe email, or social media? Well I believe this varies by parents. Once you introduce your kids to something new you need to be on top of it and in full communication with them about that item. Think about T.V. You don’t give your child a channel changer and leave them alone for hours to “explore”. I know all the things I listed above can be scary; being a parent is scary. You choose what your child gets and when. As well as how much time they get with each device. Remember all of these are privileges, not necessities. Always remember; you know what your child is ready for at what age. We have rules in our family of no cell phones till the end of 6th grade, and no social media accounts until Jr. High. They can only have family as friends/followers to start with until High School. Now let me share how we do social media. First of all, we know all user names and passwords. Second, we must pre approve friends before friend/follower request are sent or accepted. This continues until they graduate high school. You may ask “Well what about secret accounts?” Easy. We go on our kid’s phones, computers, social media pages- from their computers of course. They know if anything is questionable, their computer, phone, etc. is ours to take. Even if they received it as a gift. They live in our home, therefore, our rules. Let me tell you, it takes work to have all these electronics. We have 5 kids and that means we can’t be relaxed about it. We are constantly checking phones, computers, tablets, social media, etc. With everything we allow them to have, we have to check up on those things. We have well behaved children, but I make sure they are on the right track every day. So a few tips on all these electronics.

1. Make sure you have an open, honest relationship before giving them any of these gadgets.

2. Never allow computers/ tablets/phones in the bedroom especially with a closed door.

3. We plug in all phones in our family room area every night, no phones in the bedroom.

4. No phones at the dinner table.

5. Make sure to limit all electronics to your contentment.

6. Remember you are the parent; it is your job to teach your sweet babies about responsibility.

7. I use the line from Spiderman, “With great power, comes great responsibility.”

1 Timothy 3:4

He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect.

Teenagers and preteens

As my teenager stormed off to her bedroom I had a choice to make.  1. I could chalk it up to “normal” teenager behavior, or 2. I could compose myself and follow her.  Well I personally don’t enjoy the “normal” teenager attitude so I followed her to her bedroom, took a seat on her bed and asked her what she was feeling, the reply I got was “I don’t know”.  Well that is not an answer to me so I told her I would sit with her until she could tell me what she was feeling; mad, sad, angry, hurt.  I know this takes work as a parent, the thing is if we as parents can help our children express their feelings; we open up communication in the small things and that makes it easier for them to talk about the big things with us.  I use this system with each one of my kids, letting them know their feelings are real and o.k. to feel and talk about.  I believe if we connect emotionally with our kids we will have stronger relationships with them.