Posted in loreeebee.ca, parenting

Teach Your Children Well

I heard the song “Teach Your Children Well” by Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young for the first time in ages the other day. The lyrics resonated with me as the parent of three now adult sons, and five grandchildren…

You, who are on the road
Must have a code that you can live by
And so, become yourself
Because the past is just a goodbye.

Teach your children well
Their father’s hell did slowly go by
And feed them on your dreams
The one they pick’s the one you’ll know by.

Don’t you ever ask them, “Why?”
If they told you, you would cry
So just look at them and sigh
And know they love you.

And you of tender years
Can’t know the fears
That your elders grew by
And so, please help
Them with your youth
They seek the truth
Before they can die

The second verse is for the children, to help them better understand the parenting skills (or lack there of) of the previous generation.

Teach Your Children Well was released way back in 1970, but the words still apply today, at least I think they do. What do you think?

This is the video, the words sound much better to music…

The tune and lyrics are so catchy and relevant to family life that they are currently being used in a commercial for Sobeys grocery stores.

Posted in current events, loreeebee.ca

Thou Shalt not Kill: a Christian Commandment

If you were asked to rhyme off the ten commandments, supposed rules of God in Christianity, I am willing to bet “thou shalt not kill” is one of the ones you could quote.

Canadians are heartbroken and disgusted after the sickening discovery of 215 bodies of indigenous children recently at a residential school in Kamloops, British Columbia. The fear is that this horrific discovery is just the tip of a genocidal iceberg.

Residential schools were created in 1876 as free boarding schools for indigenous children, funded by the Canadian government and run by the Catholic church. In 1894 attendance became mandatory, until 1947, although the last school only closed its doors in 1996, not that long ago. The intention was to enable the children to adjust to Canadian (rather than indigenous) cultures, to convert the children to Christianity, and to civilize them. These schools were intentionally located far away from indigenous communities to limit the children’s contact with their families, fully immersing the children in their adopted (supposedly superior) culture.

Forced to speak English or French, the children were stripped of their ancestral languages and heritage. Rumours of physical and sexual abuse were rampant within the residential schools. Children that ran away were severely punished upon their return, if they returned. Many went missing, never to return, so it was reported. The dead bodies cropping up are telling a different, more sinister tale although poor record keeping and unmarked graves will make it nearly impossible to unearth the whole, ugly truth.

Back to the ten commandments. How can any religion or culture that proclaims to follow the rules of Christianity participate in such heinous acts of abuse, torture and genocide on innocent children? It makes me sick! How could those that did survive those torture-filled years ever lead normal lives afterward?

How and why are the perpetrators not held accountable for their actions? An apology is severely insufficient. This was not a single act of abuse or a simple mistake, but years of racially motivated, discriminatory, criminal acts.

Thou shalt not kill
Posted in family, grandkids, loreeebee.ca, parenting

Mother’s Day: Celebrating my Greatest Achievement

photo credit: Facebook

Today I celebrate my greatest achievement. I’m sure it is apparent how much I adore my three sons. They are all kind, caring and loving, not to mention handsome, intelligent, successful, and definitely more humble than their mother.

I am especially proud of the fathers my two eldest have become with the help of the wonderful mothers of their children.

Raising Boys to Men

When my boys were growing up, people always commented on how difficult it must be to raise three boys. I wondered about that comment as I never had any daughters to compare the boys to and I always thought it was an unfair exaggeration.

These days one would call the comments sexist and all kinds of other descriptive words popular in our vocabulary today.

I have to admit, I loved every minute of it. Ok, maybe not every single minute, but 99.9% of them.

Disputing the Theory

As a mother of three boys and a grandmother to three grandsons, I dispute the opinion that boys are more difficult to raise. They may be busier physically, with different interests, but not harder or more stressful.

My father, who raised three boys and three girls, always said the girls were harder. His theory was based on the fact that he worried more about the girls until they were married. Perhaps another sexist comment, but the norm and and non-offensive back then.

Boys will be Boys

There is something to be said for the saying “boys will be boys.” My experience is that (most) little boys are fascinated with things like bugs, dirt and mud, cars and trucks, dinosaurs and more. I don’t believe these interests are taught and learned, but more instinctive or innate. Encouraged (as they should be) perhaps, but not taught.

For example, my four year old grandson can spend hours flipping over rocks looking for bugs. His big sister and younger female cousin, not so much. They tend to run from the bugs, as fast as they can.

And, one of the words my youngest grandson, at just one year old, can say is vroom, vroom. OK, that’s two words, but I’m sure you get the gist.

Tomboys Raising Boys

Perhaps I find boys easy to handle because I was a tomboy growing up, much to the chagrin of my mother. I preferred playing hockey, football, and other sports with the boys instead of playing dolls with the girls. I don’t recall though, being particularly enamoured with bugs.

You could say I had lots of practice hanging out with the boys, that could be why I have so much patience with my grandsons’ antics and interests.

Conclusions

In closing, bearing and raising happy and healthy children is something to celebrate. Even though mine are now adults, I still consider them to be my greatest achievements in life, bar none!

Happy Mother’s Day to the rest of you celebrating your own achievements!

Posted in current events, education, family, health and wellness, loreeebee.wordpress.com

Covid and Kids, What are the Long-Term Effects?

I worry about the short and long term effects of this covid pandemic on our children. Social distancing does not come naturally to them. It is difficult enough for us adults, but we (most of us) can see and understand the reason behind the rules. We also do our best to explain these rules to our kids and grandkids.

When we were not allowed to hug or touch each other I would tell my grandkids that “grandma is sick and doesn’t want to make you sick.” This little white lie worked, but I could see the confusion on their sweet little faces.

The primary (pun intended) lesson learned in sending our kids to school at four years old is supposed to be the development and practice of social skills. You know, stuff like sharing, trading, empathy, taking turns and more. How can they do this if social distancing is their new norm?

What lessons are they going to learn instead? Don’t touch, don’t get too close, don’t care, and god forbid, don’t share. Will they learn anything beneficial? At what point are we doing them more harm than good?

Parents are facing a dilemma. Most families need two incomes to stay afloat financially, and cannot afford to have one parent stay home to look after young children. Single parents have even less choice. Daycares offer the same risk and discourage social skills as schools are doing.

So, what is the answer? Perhaps a Covid related, government issued benefit for a parent to stay home to care for, nurture and educate their young children. If we can pay any previously employed adults to stay home even though they could/should have returned to work, why can’t we pay parents to stay home? Of course, like a maternity/paternity leave, it would have to guarantee a job upon their return to work.

Posted in health and wellness, lorieb.com, parenting, rant

Political Correctness: Out of Control

political correctness
John Cleese

John Cleese, the English actor and comedian of Monty Python fame, has a theory on why political correctness is getting out of hand.  This theory was originally published by Jon Miltimore on Intellectual Takeout.

He’s hardly the first comedian to say so, of course. Funny men such as Jerry Seinfeld, Mel Brooks, and others have complained that political correctness is killing comedy.  Cleese, like Seinfeld, says he no longer performs on America’s college campuses, where political correctness enforcement is particularly strident.

In a recent monologue with Big Think, Cleese said the effort to protect people from negative feelings is not just impractical, but suffocating to a free society.

“The idea that you have to be protected from any kind of uncomfortable emotion is one I absolutely do not subscribe to,” Cleese says.

Cleese, who spoke to psychiatrist Robin Skynner about the phenomenon, posited an interesting theory on why many people feel compelled to control the language and behaviors of others.

“If people can’t control their own emotions, then they have to start trying to control other people’s behavior,” Cleese says.

You can watch the entire monologue below. What do you make of Cleese’s theory? Is he right?

 

I agree, political correctness is getting way out of hand in our culture, and not just comedians are noticing.

For example, it is ridiculous that in our children’s sporting events everyone gets the same award, just for participating.  No winners and no losers, everyone must be treated the same.  Competition can be healthy and should not be discouraged, especially if a child shows interest in an activity.  Kids should be taught that some people will be better than others in all of their endeavours.  This includes sports, scholastic abilities, job skills and any other activity. You excel at some, others not so much.  You learn to win graciously and accept defeat just as graciously.  That is a healthy skill that all kids need to learn.

My three sons were (are) very athletic and good at any sport they chose to play.  Were/are they the best?  No, but they learned to recognize and respect those that were/are better, more successful than they were/are.  This is an important life lesson and important for developing self esteem.  Sadly, it appears that this valuable lesson is low on the priority list these days.

It is no small wonder that more teens today suffer from anxiety and depression than ever before. Teen suicide too is rampant, doesn’t it make you wonder if there is a connection to our current excessive demand for political correctness and the rise of anxiety and depression?

 

 

Posted in lorieb.com, parenting

Brainwashing our children, practice what you preach!

Are our children victims of brainwashing?  Some people believe overzealous climate change activists are filling children’s heads with doom and gloom causing unnecessary stress and even depression. Children are the unwitting targets of this brainwashing in this blatant form of emotional blackmail.  What parent, grandparent or any adult for that matter, can resist emotional and passionate pleas from young children?

Environmental threats are (and should be) a concern globally.  As intelligent humans we need to address the threats using proven scientific solutions and compromises.  The problem arises when big companies or wanna be scientists on both sides of the argument get involved by throwing big money or their famous face into the pot trying to sway the general public to their side.

Mega-rich oil and gas companies are fighting to keep their businesses afloat so deny that many of the suggested solutions will help, without attempting to compromise.  Activists like David Suzuki and Jane Fonda crave the spotlight, earning their own mega-bucks in appearance fees, flying around the world in fossil fuel powered jets.

Hypocrites, all of them.  While it is important to teach our children to respect the environment and reduce our carbon footprint, brainwashing them to preach unproven opinions without understanding what they are preaching is morally wrong.

Perhaps we should be teaching them to practice what they preach!

Brainwashing

 

Please check out my other blog called Gardens4u about all things garden related. And my business website with the same name.

Posted in health and wellness, lorieb.com, parenting

Sleep Deprivation Consequences and Cures

If you google just about any health ailment or nagging symptom, sleep deprivation will be on the list of possible causes. Why is that?  Because people are just too (potentially dangerously so) busy and plugged in to sleep these days. When we do sleep, we don’t sleep well.

From small children to retirement age, our lives are jam packed with structure and technology, leaving no (or very little) down time.  If you ask a retiree, they will most likely tell you one of the most enjoyable things about retiring is the ability to nap when you want.

What can you do to improve the quantity and quality of your sleep to ward off sleep deprivation? Start by unplugging yourself, literally and figuratively, at least four hours before your bedtime. Instead of focusing on the screens of a television, game console, computer or cell phone, shut them down. Read a book, cook and savour a nice meal, or go out for a drink or meal with a friend or loved one. Sans the phone.

This applies to your children too. Remember, you are their most influential teacher. They will pick up your unhealthy habits just as easily as your good ones. They do need routine in their lives, but organized structure not so much. Kids also need down time instead of being shuttled from event to event.

Sleep deprivation shows up in their behaviour and their health.  Research has shown that overly active (organized) kids tend to suffer from anxiety, which in turn leads to poor quality of sleep.  It is very easy to cut back on their organized activities.  Let them play at home with their siblings and parents. Bring back the board games of our youth. Encourage older kids to read books or experiment in the kitchen.  Simply slow down their lives, especially before bed time.

Think of your brain as a computer that controls your body. Even the best computers need to reboot or update regularly to stay efficient and healthy. Similarly, every cell in your body, especially those in your brain, needs down time to repair and recuperate from everything we throw at them. They can only do that when we sleep. When we don’t provide these cells with quality sleep to perform this maintenance on a regular basis, sleep deprivation sets in and cells start to break down, causing all those symptoms you are googling about.

Posted in loreeebee.ca, parenting

Proud momma bear

Nothing makes a momma bear prouder than compliments about her children.  This past weekend as my eldest son got married, I was honored and humbled by the number of people that commented on how handsome, polite, respectful,  charming and well-rounded all three of my sons are.

I have always believed that a mother’s most important job is raising her children, so it was very rewarding to hear that others recognize that I (we, as I must give credit to my husband too) have done a decent job.

This momma bear could not be prouder!