My Family Tribe

Here are a few things that Seth Godin unintentionally taught me about parenting in his book Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us

◆Don’t be boring

◆Find a family quest

◆Exceed expectations

◆Surprise and delight

◆Spotlight awesome work

◆Create a culture

I took my children to a magic show last year.  They were absolutely captivated, amazed and astounded.

 Seth Godin says that the key to being a magician has “nothing to do with knowing how the trick is done, and everything to do with the art of doing it…Magic only happens in a spectator’s mind…focus on bringing an experience to the audience.  This is magic.”

I found myself asking, “What kind of experiences am I bringing to my audience, my family?

And I ask myself the question he asks again and again, “Why not be remarkable?”

Miss Rumphius

The children’s section of the library is overwhelming to me.  How on earth do I find classic books to read to my children in the thousands of books available?

I love recommendations.  So here is mine for today:

“Miss Rumphius” by Barbara Cooney.

The illustrations are beautiful and the story is simple and full of truth.  Alice’s grandfather teaches her at a very young age to be thinking of what she will do someday “to make the world more beautiful.”  She lives her life with this thought in the back of her mind until the day she realizes what she must do and then she does it.

As the mother of four boys and a girl I am always on the hunt for books that will appeal to my boys. My boys range from 11 to almost 4 years old.   They gave this one a thumbs up.

Check it out…it’s a great springtime book.

Getting out of the walker

 Have you seen a baby in a walker before?  I have memories of all five of my children in the walker.  The excitement!  The look of pleasure and pride on their faces as they zoomed around the kitchen floor was memorable.  They were doing what they had seen us do; they were walking!  (At least in their mind.) Look at them go!!!

What was the day like when they realized they still needed to learn to walk?  That the walker couldn’t get them everywhere they wanted to go…that though it had taught them the excitement and feeling of walking…they were not yet walking.  I do not remember any of them sitting depressed in the walker. Nor did any of them hit the walker, blaming it for giving them false hopes, promises and dreams.   They just started to try to walk on their own, and eventually did.

The other day, I realized that I had been in a “walker” for a while.  I had been having fun, it was exciting, I had leanred to do things I thought were impossible.  But on that day I realized that there were places I wasn’t yet able to reach and stairs that I could not climb.  I had learned much about the feelingof “walking”; I had loved every minute of my zooming to and fro.  However there was more, and I needed to move on.  I was growing and the time for the walker had past.  It was time to work harder, longer, better.  I knew the security of the walker was not worth the adventure of learning to walk that lay ahead of me.

There are many phases in life that are like being in a walker.  They are times to enjoy and learn and love the feeling but the time will come when WE know we are ready to move on, in fact, READY OR NOT, we must move on and DO the thing all on our own.

The key is to have a child’s faith.  They don’t sit down depressed and say, “This will never work. I can never do this on my own.  I can’t possible do more.”  They just try until they suceed.  We adults fear the long fall, the bruises and bumps, and embarassement.  But why should we be embarassed?  When a baby falls, we don’t say to his mother, “How embarassing!  Why didn’t you stop him? Why did you let him try that?”  Yet we say that to ourselves and with our looks and sometimes words we say it to others as well.  This we must stop!

When the time comes to get out the walker…it’s just time.  Remember the feeling and fun and try, try, try and before you know it you’ll be zooming again…until it’s time to move on to the next level.   And I firmly believe, before you know it…you’ll leave the ground behind and fly.