One Sunday while sitting around the dinner table, Louise and I began to tell Daddy stories, the ones that stretched back to the early days of his preaching life. Since I was born 12 years after he "made a preacher," as our folks said back then, I could only contribute what he had told me about those days, not what I had seen.
Q: Our 5-year-old grandson sees his 5-year-old female first cousin from time to time. After they play for a while, he tells her he wants to "touch" her. This has happened twice in recent months. Her parents are very upset, but our grandson's parents read lots of parenting books and seem to think it's no big deal. Your thoughts on this matter?
To this conclusion I have come: the most deadly years of our lives are the ages 16 to 21. Those years give us a headiness that comes from new freedom - a driver's license - and the passing of the torch from strict childhood rules to more trust, different restraints and relaxed curfews.
On one of my Web sites I, along with a team of certified parent coaches, answer questions submitted by parents. In the last two days, 67 percent of the questions have concerned toilet training. A 3-year-old is afraid of the potty. A 26-month-old will only use the potty independently if he's not wearing clothes. A 23-month-old seems oblivious to mom's expectations. And so on.
The YMCA of Coastal Georgia will become a provider of the nationally recognized LIVESTRONG at the YMCA program, thanks to an implementation grant from YMCA of the USA, the Y's national resource office, in partnership with the LIVESTRONG Foundation.
Their histories, accurate and complete, are lost to time and buried with them and those who knew them. I wish I knew more, for their stories would read like a page-turning novel.
A mom recently asked me what I would say to my son if he was 12 years old and wanted a mohawk haircut for the summer. I told her I'd say no.
As an investor, you're well aware that, over the short term, the financial markets always move up and down. During your working years, you may feel that you have time to overcome this volatility. And you'd be basing these feelings on actual evidence: the longer the investment period, the greater the tendency of the markets to "smooth out" their performance. But what happens when you retire? Won't you be more susceptible to market movements?
My grandmother - Daddy's mother - was sometimes called "crazy" by others who didn't quite understand her eccentric ways. Of course, in the South, we are proud of such a label for it means that we are interesting and worthy of being the center of coffee and cake conversation.
Carolyn Bashlor penned her first book, "Getting It All Together," back in 1980.
I absolutely love it when people begin to realize that the problems they're having with a child are of their own making; when they begin to realize, in other words, that the child is not the problem-they are! All this time (however long that might be), they've been trying to correct the wrong person - the child - getting nowhere and becoming nothing but frustrated in the process. Instead, they need to correct themselves, and it goes without saying that correcting one's self is much, much easier than trying to correct someone else.
It was an early summer morning, an enchanting time when flowers are blooming, blackberries are spurting to full growth, and the birds are happy to have sunny warmth. I had taken myself out to the back porch, where often I settle down to write after I have finished a gentle run.
Q: Using your advice, I successfully toilet-trained my daughter by age 16 months. It is now three months later and we are still using diapers at naps and nighttime. At her nap, which lasts several hours, she fully soaks her diaper. At night, she is taking off her diaper prior to falling asleep, wetting the bed after she goes to sleep, and then crying for us when she wakes up in a pool of pee. Is this a sign that I should begin night training? I'm hesitant to do this because I am 8 months pregnant and don't ...
Tisha Holland put her heart into a school project this spring.
Mama used to fry biscuits. If you knew Mama, that doesn't surprise you because she fried every food possible. In the course of her life, I knew her to fry green beans, corn, grits and cornmeal mush.
A first-grade teacher asks what she can do about a girl in her class who is completely undisciplined. After nearly two months of this teacher's best efforts, the child's behavior is no better. She is defiant, aggressive toward other kids, and often gets out of her seat and crawls around on the floor. Several years ago, she taught the girl's older sister who also had numerous discipline issues. The home is chaotic, so the teacher doubts she can expect much if any help from the parents.
Several weeks ago, I wrote about moonshine runner turned stock car champion Lloyd Seay, who was murdered in a dispute over sugar purchased to make illegal whiskey.
The Effingham County Health Department now has flu vaccine available. Cost for both the injectable (shot) and nasal spray form is $28. A high dose flu vaccine is also being offered for people ages 65 and older, and it is designed to provide the best protection for that age group. The high dose vaccine will be $45 per dose. Cost of the flu vaccine is covered under both Medicare and Medicaid.
One afternoon, I had a hankering, a primal-like craving, for a supper of pinto beans and cornbread with a tall glass of cold, rich buttermilk thrown in for good measure and extra filling.
Q: My 7-year-old son does well in school and sports and has a good number of friends. However, he often allows himself to be intimidated by other boys. He is a rule-follower and is more worried about getting in trouble than defending himself. I worry that other boys will see him as easy to pick on. Occasionally, he complains about how other boys treat him.
I've spoken at several conferences in the last year or so where presenters were opining on the subject of the teenage brain. Their thesis was that features of the so-called "teenage brain" are largely responsible for the self-centered, irrational, moody, rebellious behavior now associated with adolescence.
Over the years, I've crossed paths with many who were extremely successful as well as some who were such miserable failures that, as Mama liked to say, "ain't worth the breath they draw."
That apple tree. Oh my goodness. Something told me it wouldn't turn out well.
A second-grade teacher writes: "I teach in a very competitive school where parents have developed a 'mob mentality' for bullying administrators and teachers. They have gone beyond helicopter parenting to Apache Blackhawk parenting."
This happened years ago. Mama was alive then, so it's been seven or eight years. I hadn't thought about in almost that many years but when it came to mind the other day, I took to studying on it and how the circumstances and opportunities of life's journey can be so fascinating.
Q: My 23-month-old son does well with potty training when we're at home. We use a "potty bell" and he goes every 90 minutes or so. When we're away from home, however, he seems clueless. He pees in his car seat about five minutes into a trip and simply will not use a potty anywhere but at our home or at my mother's (she watches him one day a week at her place). Would pull-ups be a bad thing to use when we leave the house?
Yes, I know that I am, occasionally, prone to embellishment. But trust me when I say this is the law and the gospel: I have a long-time friend who only calls me when someone dies. Most times, I know the person but sometimes I don't have a clue the person ever existed.
Q: I homeschooled my oldest, an 8-year-old boy, until this year. He started third grade in public school in August. As a homeschooling mom, I was not a micromanager and don't want to become one now, but the school virtually insists that parents help with homework. I want him to be independent. What are your thoughts on this?
A friend of mine, long embroiled in upsets, distractions, problems and tribulations, called one day to announce happily that she was learning to "let things roll right off my back."
It's a fact that a good night's sleep is essential to optimal performance, no matter the task. It is also a fact that America's teens, generally speaking, don't get enough sleep. Ergo, American teens, as a group, underperform in school.