May 18

Organized Give Aways

***To those of you who received this post via email yesterday, I apologize. User error…the user being me~  Read on anyway, I added a few things.***

If you are visiting from the Proverbs 31 devotion, welcome! I’m glad you stopped by and I hope you’ll stay a while.

Before I share my Top Ten Ways to Connect With Your Children, I’d like to share something that’s applicable to almost everyone, whether you have children or not.

I lead online Bible studies and my next one is perfect for the summer. Many people like to take the summer “off” and I can understand that, but I also think what better time than the summer to get some peace and order in your life so you are ready to go strong in the fall?  My next online study will be of Glynnis Whiter’s popular book, I Used to Be So Organized. The study will take place right here on my blog and I’d love to have you join me! Author, Glynnis Whitwer will be an active part of this study, offering us weekly input and encouragement. I’ll be posting video messages again and sharing first hand the progress I’m making in my very cluttered life!  There will be simple assignments and lots of motivation and encouragement. We will be digging into God’s Word as we restore order and peace to our lives. Do you need to declutter your life? Well, sign up for this study.

Sign up in the right column of my blog and get more information here. We get started June 3rd!

Those who sign up for the Online Bible study by Wednesday, May 23rd will be entered to win an Organizational Gift Pack filled with a  book (I Used to Be So Organized), a daytimer, journal, pens, highlighters, post it notes, P31 Woman June issue magazine featuring someone we might know, and conference call series for this study. Winner announced Thursday morning!

If you read today’s devotion, you know I’ll do anything to connect with my children. The cool thing about me texting my kids a Bible verse each day is that now I even text some of their friends and other special young ones in my life a Bible verse also. Not because I decided to do that, but because they asked for it!  If you are looking for different ways to connect with your kids, I surveyed a few trusted sources and listed a few of my favorites here in my Top Ten Ways to Connect With Your Children.  I hope you find them helpful. And before you leave here today, share with me in the comment section some special ways you connect with your children.

Top Ten Ways to Connect With Your Children

By Melissa Taylor

It ranks among one of my top priorities in life. I know my time with them is borrowed. My own mother told me to make the most of the time I have with my children, because it will be gone before I know it. Wow, isn’t that the truth?  But what exactly does it mean “to make the most of the time” we have with our kids?  I think a lot of it has to do with the ways we choose to connect with them.  There are many ways we can find to bond with our children. Here are my Top Ten.

10.  Ignore your cell phone when you are with them. Let it ring and let the caller leave a message!  Send the message to your child that they are #1 and way more important than anyone who may be calling you.

9.  Show up. Be there for their special days, no matter how little or big the event or the child is.

8.  Game Time. Playing games is a great way to just hang out, be competitive, insert values when they don’t realize it, and just have fun! There are so many fun family games. Just last night, I observed my 9 year old daughter playing “Go Fish” with my husband. It was the tiniest deck of cards you ever did see, but they were laughing and having the best time.

7.  One on one time. Be intentional on having some time just for you and one of your children. For me, this is tough sometimes. I have to make this happen. For example, my daughter and I have a lot of time alone and we do a regular Mommy~Daughter date night, but my sons and I don’t.  (We used to, but since they have gotten older, not so much.) I have to create that time so I try to select an activity that will intrigue them…like going to Starbucks, to a sports store just to look around, to a movie then ice cream, or sitting in the garage to listen to the drums.  The activity isn’t so important as the time is.

6.  Family Devotions. Priceless. If you can get your whole family together for some Family Time Devotions and discussion, do it!!!!  It’s a great time to have the opportunity to bring God’s Word to life and learn to apply to real life. My kids learned how to look up Bible verses because of family devotions.

5.  Car Time/Bedtime. You have a captive audience in the car, don’t let that time slip by.  Talk to them. Pay attention to what they want to listen to on the radio and let them listen to it.  Ask them about their day. And at bedtime, tuck them in.  Again, you have a captive audience. Sometimes this is when your kids will just unload. For some reason mine seem to let their guards down at bedtime. Pray for them and let them hear you.

4.  Family Meals. Whether you are a single mom or the mom of six, try to make time for a meal together. Not only does it encourage conversation, but also table manners.  We used to all have breakfast together. Something we like to incorporate into our Dinner time is reporting the  High-Lows:  Each person reveals their high of the day and their low of the day. Quite telling.

3.  Get interested in what they love even if it’s not what you love. Find out the best way for THEM to communicate. This may not be your #1 way. Follow them on Facebook.  Look at their iTunes music files. Play their video games. Text them. Get to know their friends and love them.

2.  Talk to them about anything! And listen too! From early on, let them know that they can ask anything, talk to you about anything, or approach you with any subject.  NOTHING is off limits. Oh I have stories on this one!

1. Be available. Show your children that they matter by being available to them.

And finally, one I can’t leave off.

*Pray for them. Pray a specific verse for them. Let them know you are doing this. It may be a life verse you have claimed for them or just a prayer you have on your heart that day. This is a way you can connect with them EVEN IF THEY DON’T RESPOND TO THE OTHER 10 SUGGESTIONS.

Thank you to my Facebook and Twitter friends, P31 gals, Fab 5,  and also to my own kids and husband for their ideas in helping create this list. I love you and would not want to do life without you! Xoxoxoxo

Last but not least:

Want a tween girl’s perspective on texting?  Visit sweet Taylor Koziarz’ blog today. She shares her views on tween texting, what she likes about it and what she doesn’t like about it. She’s new to blogging and great young writer. After you comment here, pop on over and say “hi.”  I know it would make her sooooo happy to hear from you!  Comment on my blog and then Taylor’s blog and you will be entered to win the book I Used to Be So Organized.  This winner will be announced on Sunday morning.

 

Hope you got all that. We have 2 give aways and an awesome Top 10 presented here today.

Give Away #1~ Sign up for the Online Bible Study by Wednesday at midnight and you will be entered to win an Organizational Gift Pack. Winner announced Thursday morning.

Give Away #2~ Leave a comment on my blog and Taylor Koziarz’ blog and you will be entered to win the book, I Used to Be So Organized. Winner announced Sunday morning. Make sure if you comment anonymously that you at least include your first name. Thanks!

Top Ten Ways to Connect With Your Children~ Hope you find these useful :)

Love and Big Blessings!

 

Melissa

Comments

  1. Darlene says:

    Hi Melissa, I’m back for another study with you. Can’t wait. I loved your ideas, my children are also grown and I have 4 blessings. I’ve found that I pray and spend time differently with them than I did with my children. I definitely need the organization at this time in my life. Thanks always for being you.

    • Yay Darlene! I’m so glad you will be studying with me again! And you are passing down a beautiful legacy to your children and grandchildren!

  2. Looking forward to this study so much! Thanks for the top 10 list too! Shared it with our Family Ministry team at church today! Enjoy the weekend!

  3. Annette Davidson says:

    I am going to sign up right now. Sounds exciting. Thanks so much.
    Blessings to you.

  4. Nicki Edwards says:

    Thanks for these tips. I must say that there are a few that I can tick off and say that I already do however you have challenged me that there are a few simple ways of connecting with my kids that I have just let slip by and not seen how important they are. I love the challenge of texting a scripture verse to them and can’t wait to get started. Thanks for the online bible studies. They are such a blessing to me and I’m looking forward to this next one. God bless you. Xxx

  5. Teresa Richardson says:

    Thanks for the link to Taylor Koziarz’ blog. As a Nana to 3 grandsons who will soon be tweens, her wisdom will be passed onto them

  6. Donna B says:

    Melissa,

    Love all of these ….I don’t have kids but I do text my the women in my home small groups throughout our sessions together – usually words of encouragement and prayers! With my crazy work and travel schedule I find that it works best!

    I love watching you with your kids! I love watching out how you love on them individually! You have their love languages down and you teach me much!!!

    LULNMW,
    Donna B

  7. What a great idea to text your children Bible verses. I love it! I am going to start tomorrow morning! I am also super excited about the Getting Organized Bible study. I need more organization in my life. Thanks for offering it!

  8. Wow Melissa! I LOVE your top 10 ways to connect with your kids! I’m going to start incorporating a few of those into my daily interactions with my 2 kids. I especialy like the idea of everyone reporting their high & low for each day. That’s a great way of opening up some communication & get some real dialogue going with our kids. Family devotions are another that I would like to get started doing with my kids. That would be so great!
    Thanks so much for the post Melissa! Your realness & honesty are such great encouragement for so many ladies, including me. Your willingness to share so freely is an inspiration.
    Have a great weekend!

    • The high/lows are actually my favorite one. We find out things we would never know if we just said, “So, tell me about your day” or “What did you do today?” My husband and I share our highs and lows too.

      Thank you for your sweet words. You’ve encouraged me today!

  9. Taylors post is so awesome! I loved Taylor’s texting solutions. The Happy Game sounds like a great way to turn negativity into something positive & fun. She is so wise for her age. Thanks for sharing Taylor’s blog site Melissa!

  10. Lynn Temple says:

    I use to be organized. Ha! Well, at least I thought I was. I will read this book one day! God Bless!

  11. Thanks for your tips on ways of connecting with our kids. My son and I used to play games a lot together – I think it’s time to start that again!
    Also, what a nice post by your little friend Taylor. She did a really good job! Hopefully it’ll inspire many other youth to be careful in what they text, and make it fun too!
    Connie – Canada

  12. Tiffany Bell says:

    I love all of these ideas. I also enjoy “car time” with my 12 year old son. We can talk about almost anything then….we usually just blast our worship music, though. 😉

  13. Thanks for sharing. For those things on the list that don’t come naturally I had to learn the hard way unfortunately. I am so excited about this bible study. I would say this is the one thing that I struggle with most. I often find myself wondering what happened to me and my brain. Glad to know there are enough people out there in the same boat, so much so, that it was worthy of a book.

    • “I often find myself wondering what happened to me and my brain.” I could have written that sentence! Glad you’ll be studying with me!

  14. LindaAnn says:

    I’ve been very concerned about losing touch with my grandchildren. There are several miles between us and we are all so busy it seems theres no time to talk. Unlike grandpa I do care. Look out girls, grammy will be the next texting queen!!
    Thanks Melissa.

  15. Hello Melissa! Thank you for your great tips! I have two teennage sons and your tips on how to spend quality time with them will come in handy! Along with my princes I also have my princess Mia who’s eight. Last night I came up with a new game for us. I call it ‘Once upon a time…’ My daughter is very creative and likes to write songs and I decided to share in that imagination of hers. I’d say, “Once upon a time there was/were,” and her and I would take turns creating the story. I also want to share a mistake I made that she pointed out to me was that I kept starting the story so I appologized for that and let her start the next ones. We had a good time and maybe next time we’ll make up some songs together.

    • Tici,
      Thank you so much for sharing this! I love your “Once upon a time…” idea, and thank you for the advice on not always starting the story!

      Blessings,
      Melissa

  16. nancys1128 says:

    I love your list. And you are so right about bedtime! While it comes later than preferred with our 11yo daughter, it is still a very precious part of my day. She really does open up then, and I hope it continues into her teens.

  17. Robin Mitrani says:

    You made me smile with your suggestion to text bible verses. I tried that with my middle child. She came home and said ‘Mom WHY did you text me that?!?’ I kept it up for a little while, but I must confess that I am not very good at texting and it became difficult for me so I gave up. I think your devotional is a sign that I begin again. Thanks!!
    -Robin

  18. Allison Kaumo says:

    I really enjoyed reading your devotional and the 10 ways to connect with your children! I am a mother of just one child who is 3 years old but I know that I can already incorporate some of these ideas now! Of course later in life some of these will become even more invaluable so thanks again for the fantastic tips!

  19. Sharon Fry says:

    This is so commonly heard, but SO very true: God’s timing is perfect. I couldn’t have read this at a more perfect time. On the eve of my 2nd son’s baptism plus countless other things going on in the life of the mom to 3 boys, I so needed these suggestions. Thank you for this, I’m printing it out & also plan to share it with my MOPS/Momsnext group.

  20. Thank you for your post about Connecting w/ you children. I can’t wait to txt bible verses to my daughter!

  21. Thank you Melissa for sharing about ways to spend with your children. My two are grown and have found that you need to be ready to listen when they have something to share–our daughter had to move back home when the economy tanked, but I know this as a blessing! she helps us out, plus it helps her too! our son lives in Memphis going to Optometry School so facebook, skype, and texts are our ways of communicating. My husband and I try to send him some “fun” packages every few weeks as a way of showing our love and support. I’m so excited about the next study. Each study has been amazing! thank you for everything you do for Proverbs 31! What a blessing Sue

  22. Just love this reminder to be relevant. It is hard to keep up with all the new forms of communication, but as moms, I don’t think we have a choice. I admire all the grandparents I know who are taking full advantage of social media like facebook to keep up with the latest on their friends and families. For whatever is coming next (can’t imagine!!), I pray I will keep up. In the meantime, funny, just last Monday, as my friend and I were wrapping up our prayer time in our Moms In Prayer (formerly Moms In Touch) group, we decided we would start texting our kids a verse a day. Hmmmm…Jesus is at work, keeping us meeting others where they are, just as He did! Delighted to stop by from your Proverbs 31 devo!

    • Thank you Elise for your comment here. I love God’s timing with you beginning to text verses right before this devotion came out! I just think God is so cool like that!

  23. I can’t wait to start another study! The last one helped me out so much!

  24. Kristin says:

    Great ideas! Mine are still so little, but they grow so fast! Thank you!!!

  25. Suzanne says:

    I’m looking forward to making some changes, inspiration and motivation in the organizational area of my life. Thank you for your study!

  26. Danielle Powers says:

    I have never done an online bible study before. I am a teacher and sometimes I get lost in my work at school and keeping the family afloat! I am so looking forward to joining you!
    Blessings! <