I'm Pam, and I'm glad you're here. I hope my thoughts on family, faith, and the flux of life help you laugh, fire you up or just make you think.

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tackling fear: shifting perspective

A city bus rides around my town with a larger-than-life ad sporting a gigantic picture like this: 

SAW A BUG???  Call (not-to-be-named Exterminator)!
Think of the message this sends.  If I see a tiny bug, I should immediately freak out and call in the troops?  Even if it’s just a fly?  What if it’s a ladybug?  Have [...]

how to start kid conversations

Here’s one more goodie from the archives to help with those fall routines:

Now that fall is approaching full swing, are you having conversations like this?
How was your day? fine.
What happened at school (or work)? not much.
Wanna talk about it? not really.
It seems like no matter how hard I try, those questions never seem to elicit [...]

all in the presentation

I’ve never felt so hip at a second grade event.
We’ve been hearing about Mr. T’s poetry night for weeks.  Mr. T is KN’s cool student teacher:  a gentle giant with big hair, big hands, and a big heart for kids.  We’d received at least three kid-scrawled invitations:  a command performance for the family, and I have [...]

ten ways to re-frame parenting issues

No one knows all the answers, but sometimes asking the right questions gets us where we need to be.
These ten questions to re-frame parenting issues always stop me in my tracks and change my approach.  Thomas and I closed Saturday’s parent workshop with this list by Chick Moorman and Thomas Haller.   Feel free to alter for [...]

on hen peckin’

Lately I’ve had chickens on the brain. 
Not long ago, I was feeling hen-pecked.  Do you know the feeling?  Like everything I said or did was being corrected, or controlled, or re-directed, or commented upon.  It drove me nuts.
Until I realized it bugged me most because it was a reflection of my own behavior.  Isn’t that [...]

powerful ways to praise

If you wanted to praise your child for something he or she did, what would you say? 
Most parents in my workshops respond, “Good job!  Nice catch.  Beautiful picture.  Wonderful story.”
That’s okay, but it could be better.  I tend to hunger for more.  There’s a reason.
I’ve learned to think about two parts to every comment:

1)  Our words (good [...]

i wonder. . .

Is this a familiar theme in your household?
How was your day? fine.
What happened at school? not much.
Wanna talk about it? not really.
It seems like no matter how hard I try, those questions never seem to get much information. A wise school counselor once suggested I use different words to ask the same question. Just [...]

stop the nagging

How’s your morning routine going? Do you hear some variation of this tape running every day:
“Get dressed. . . you’ve got to eat breakfast. . .brush your hair. . . do you have your homework? . . . don’t forget your lunch. . . did you brush your teeth?. . .it’s really cold out there, make [...]

Ashley, the superstar

Ashley dished a little attitude last night.
She’s the alternate internet persona for K, my almost-8-year-old daughter.  K created a fictional character named Ashley, a sassy little redhead with thin hair(??), fair skin and freckles.  I’m sure she would fit in perfectly at Camp Rock.  Anyway, to be clear:  This story is NOT about K (because that [...]

mind games

Sometimes I feel like my kids are out to make my life miserable. 
I know.  It’s a horrible thing to say, but when I’m self-absorbed, my thoughts get distorted and the Evil Mom tape starts playing in my mind.  I begin to believe my three charming children are doing everything they can to irritate, embarass, or distract [...]