9 Ways To Raise Respectful Children (Part III)

We have come to the final post on how to raise respectful children. If you haven’t done so yet, go back to read Part I and Part II of this series.

8. Respectful Communication

Listen To Them

Nobody likes to be ignored, nobody likes to feel that they’re being ignored. The reason why I make this distinction is because it is all about how actions are perceived by others. If we are ‘listening’ to someone but we are not making eye contact or we are putting away groceries at the same time; the other person might feel she’s being ignored. This has the same effect as if we, in fact, were ignoring her.

When our children feel we are not listening to them, they feel unimportant, small, unappreciated, not valued, unworthy of our attention (and love). Children need us to fully listen to them, validate their message and respond accordingly. They need our undivided attention.

I’m not saying that you should drop everything as soon as your child wants to talk to you. That wouldn’t teach them respect, it would teach them that we don’t have enough respect for ourselves and that we are at their beck and call all the time. They will learn that lesson and believe that what we are doing at any given moment is not important and they can interrupt and demand immediate attention.

That’s not what I’m suggesting. What I am suggesting is that we acknowledge our child’s need for connection and conversation. If we are doing something else, we can let them know we heard them and we will be with them as soon as we can. While doing this, we need to be mindful to not make our children feel like they always have to wait, and that there’s always something more important than they are. We need to strike a balance, and that’s the tricky part!

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Let Them Finish

We all know the feeling of trying to make a point or express our opinion, while the other person is constantly interrupting us. We feel ignored, disrespected and frustrated, and we probably lose interest in talking to that person again.

When we do that to our children, we are showing them that we don’t care about what they are talking about, and that we feel that what we have to do is more important or interesting than what they’re saying. Whether we mean it or not, that’s the message our children receive.

Because of my childhood experiences, I feel specially hurt when I feel that someone is constantly highjacking my conversation. That’s why I am especially attentive when it comes to give my children the chance to finish their thoughts, and to fully express their ideas before interjecting mine.

Encourage Them To Use Their Voice

Our children need to know that what they think, feel and say matters. They need to know that their voices count, and they should use them. What better place to learn and practice this than at home?

Let your children make choice, solve problem, make decisions, and express their opinions -even if they’re different than yours.

Don’t belittle their opinions by saying “that makes no sense”, “what do you know?, you’re just a kid”, “don’t question my decisions”, “that’s ridiculous”… Instead invite them to share and explain their point of view with sentences such as “what do you think about that?”, “what do you think we should do?”, “can you explain me that better?”.

Avoid talking for your children. Let them answer for themselves when talking to other people. That will not only show them that you respect their opinions, but that you expect other people to respect them as well.

That’s a great way to let them know you respect them, that they should respect themselves and that they’re worth being respected by others. When our children learn how to use their voice, it becomes their biggest defense against bullying, low self-esteem, and even sexual abuse. Let them learn this at home!

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9. Foster Autonomy

Don’t Do For Your Children What They Can Do For Themselves

You might be wondering what does this have to do with raising respectful kids. When we treat our children like babies and do everything for them, we are in fact, disrespecting. In fact, you are crippling them. Undue service is disrespectful.

When our children learn that they are capable, and that they can be self-sufficient, they grow into responsible adults, with pride in their capabilities, and with great self-esteem. They know they can manage, and it makes them so much happier. You know how you feel when you accomplish something difficult. Let them enjoy the same joy and be their cheering section when they do.

In general, avoid doing for your children what he can do for themselves. Give them space and time to do things for themselves. There’s nothing to gain from stripping away our child’s autonomy – even when they are really little – other than the short-term relief of not having to be patient and calm, as our child struggles to do something on his own. Let them do it!

Allow Them To Make Their Own Decisions

Allowing your children to make their own decisions is one of the best ways to empower them, and show them that you respect them and their ideas. Obviously, I am not suggesting that our children should run our household. The idea is to let them make age-appropriate decisions, within certain parameters defined by you.

For example, your toddler can choose his outfit out of two you have already picked out. Your preschooler can decide whether he wants to eat the broccoli and the mashed potatoes together or separately. Your elementary school child can choose whether he reads the book to you or whether you read it to him. Your high schooler can choose when it’s the best time for him to do his homework.

When we don’t give our children the choice to make their own decision, it will foster an inability to make their own decisions later in life. They will not be able to respect their own opinions and ideas, because they have learned that those ideas are wrong or not worth considering. Therefore, they will navigate life with no self-confidence, no self- esteem, and. no respect for themselves.

I hope this series about how to raise respectful children was helpful to you. Is there anything I’ve missed? Let me know!

Much love, Diana-

Read Part I of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

Read Part II of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids

In line with our April Parenting Resolution, I was thinking about what is the best book about ‘RESPECT.’ This book is a gem in that regard!

It covers everything we’ve been talking about this month about how respectful parents raise respectful children, and more. In this book, the authors invite parents to move beyond common discipline gimmicks, into practical advice on how foster mutual respect and connection.

This book focuses on understanding what makes us tick, why we feel the way we do, why we do the things we do. As I have mentioned many times, everything begins with us, the parents.  This book does a great job helping us understand our own thoughts, feelings, triggers and behaviors, as well as those of our children.

As you go through it, you will realize that the philosophy taught in this book, applies to every relationship, not just the one with your children. I’d invite you to get a copy and enjoy the read.

If you don’t have time to read, listen to it! Audible is my best discovery! Check it out!

Let me know what you think! What are the key lessons you got out of it?

Much love, Diana-

9 Ways To Raise Respectful Children (Part II)

We continue with our series on how to raise respectful children, if you haven’t done so already, head back to my previous article to read the first 3 tips I shared.

4. Identify The Cause For Disrespect

When our child disrespects us by yelling at us, talking back, hitting, bitting… we should first try to figure out what is causing him to act this way.

  • Is it because he is harboring some resentment towards us from something that happened in the past? Remember the story I shared before about my 9 year old blatantly yelling “NO” to me?
  • Is it because he doesn’t have the ability to communicate his feelings? Does he lack the vocabulary or knowledge to describe his feelings?
  • Is it because he doesn’t have the tools to work through the situation and his feelings are overwhelming him?
  • Is it because it is developmentally appropriate for him to be testing boundaries?
  • Is it because that is what we have modeled for him?
  • Is it because our boundaries and rules have been shaky, and he has learned that he can get what he wants by pushing back long enough?

What is the cause for the disrespect? Children aren’t born with the intention to disrespect their parents. There’s always a reason behind their behavior. The tough part of parenting here is to stay calm, figure out the reason behind the behavior, and then address that reason.

5. Kind And Firm Discipline

Many of us fall in the trap of becoming too permissive when we try to follow conscious and positive parenting. However, positive parenting calls for having kind but firm boundaries and rules. Set few, but clear and firm boundaries, and stick to them all the time. This way your child will know what to expect in every situation.

When the boundaries are broken, respond with kindness, acknowledging feelings, needs and wants, while still maintaining the boundary. Yelling and punishing in response to theirs is not helpful and often only escalates behavior.

If you are in public,  don’t discipline them for everyone to see, don’t shout at them, admonish them loudly, criticize them or correct them in front of others, or embarrass them. Instead, pull them aside in a calm manner, and quietly address the disrespect or misbehavior making your expectations firm and clear, and following through with consequences if necessary.

For example, before you take your toddler to a playground remind him of acceptable and not-acceptable behavior (i.e. hitting, pushing, taking away toys…), and the consequences (i.e. leaving the playground). If your toddler breaks those rules in the playground, pull him aside and remind him what’s expected once. If the disrespectful behavior continues, calmly follow through and leave the playground.

Your toddler will learn that your word is to be trusted, that the boundaries are firm, that his actions and decisions have consequences, and that despite his behavior he is loved and respected. 

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6. Apologize When You Mess Up

A mature, respectful grownup takes responsibility and apologizes when he or she makes mistakes. That’s what we hope our children to learn, and that’s what we should expect from ourselves.

Parents who respect their kids, acknowledge their mistakes, and apologize for them, even when that means that their kids were right and they were wrong. There’s nothing wrong with being wrong, or with making mistakes. It’s important to show our kids that we are fully capable of not only recognizing when we are incorrect, but showing them how we learn from our mistakes, learn the lesson, correct our behaviors, and become a better version of ourselves.

I mess up more than I would like to admit. I sometimes lose my temper,  let the stress of the moment overcome my better judgement, yell, bend my rules because I exhausted… I sometimes am not the best example for my daughters. However, every time I mess up, I apologize. I don’t let them go to sleep without letting them know that I acknowledge my shortcomings, and that I’m working to avoid them in the future.

7. Praise Respectful Behavior

Don’t miss any chance to let your child know when he’s acting well, and be specific when doing so. Go back to my previous post and read all about how to point out and encourage your child’s respectful behavior.

Much love, Diana-

Read Part I of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

Read Part III of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

9 Ways To Raise Respectful Children (Part I)

As I mentioned yesterday, we can’t expect our children to be respectful by being disrespectful to them. It all start with us. When we treat our children disrespectfully, we are making them lose their respect for us. If our child is strong will, we will surely face rebellion and constant confrontation. If our child is more easy going, we might get temporary compliance out of him, that may resemblance respect. But as soon as he can make their own decisions, we will find ourselves wondering why he doesn’t respect us anymore.

How can we make sure our children grow up being respectful, not only to us, but to themselves and to others?

1. Define What Respect Is

We often get confused as to what respect means. Many of us equate respect with blind obedience. That is though, a dangerous goal to have when raising your children. Most of us would say that we want our children to grow up into adults who are self-confident, outspoken, curious, strong, determined… How will they grow up to be that when we don’t let them practice those characteristics when they are little?

We do our children a disservice, when we demand our children to do as they’re told, without questioning our requests; when we constantly tell them what to do and how to think; or when we expect them to never speak their mind. When we do that, we are not teaching them to be respectful to us, we are teaching them to be fearful of us, and to lose respect for themselves.

2. Set Realistic Expectations For Your Children’s Behavior

We sometimes forget that our children are that, children. We usually expect too much of them, too soon. There is usually a change in our expectations as soon as our child becomes verbal and mobile. We somehow assume that they can think rationally, that they can control their feelings, that they can stop and breathe when they get frustrated, that they can listen and do what we ask of them… That’s neither realistic, nor fair.

As adults have trouble regulating our own emotions at times. We have trouble doing what we set out to do or what we know we need to do. We make mistakes. We forget things. We snap out when we don’t sleep well… We are humans, and so are our children. Make sure you place unrealistic and age-appropriate expectations on your child, and that you are forgiving when the behavior is not as you expected.

Be consistent in your expectations. When you are lax one day and firm the next day, you are showing disrespect for the relationship with your child. It tells your child that you can’t be trusted and that the boundaries are not really there to stick.

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3. Demonstrate Respectful Behavior

“We don’t generally give our children the kind of respect that we demand from them.” Jerry Wyckoff

Think about this. We often demand a behavior from our children that we don’t display ourselves. Let’s focus on teaching our child  how to respect by respecting her, by treating your child as a person in the same way you would treat adults.

What better way to teach a behavior than modeling the behavior we want to teach? It is hypocritical to expect our children to respect us, when we don’t respect them. Would you respect someone who tells you that smoking is horrible as they light up a cigarette? Would you respect someone who tells you that you need to exercise and eat healthy as they sit around on the couch all day eating chips? The answer is no. The same goes with respect!

Respect cannot be demanded. It can only be earned. Let’s earn our children’s respect and they will grown up into respectful people.

Much love, Diana-

Read Part II of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

Read Part III of the series 9 Ways to Raise Respectful Children

Which comes first, a respectful child or a respectful parent?

Many parents would say that they yell at their kids, grab their kids, spank their kids… because they aren’t listening, they aren’t doing their chores… Insert whatever you want your kids to do that they’re not doing.

This argument is often followed by the sentence ‘If only he… I wouldn’t have to…’ The truth is that our children aren’t making us do anything, they aren’t making us respond in a certain way, they aren’t making us be disrespectful to them.

If a parent treats a child in an unkind, inpatient, abusive, overpowering manner (i.e. disrespectful manner), the child will either retreat and become a people pleaser, or the child will treat the parent the same way. However, if a parent treats a child with kindness and respect, the child will treat the parent with kindness and respect.

The answer to the question ‘which comes first, a respectful parent or a respectful child?’ is obviously ‘the parent.’ As everything in life, it all begins with us, the parents. Our children are still learning how to relate to other people. We need to help them do it by setting an example, starting by how we relate to them.

 

Think of this situation…

My nine-year-old daughter blatantly yells at me “NO” when I ask her to go brush her teeth. The tone and the attitude cut me deeply, I feel disrespected, and my mind goes immediately into reaction. My thoughts range from “how dare she talk to me like that?”, to “I should be stricter with her, and punish her to end this attitude.”

However, I pause, I breath and I don’t react. Instead, I respond “I don’t like it when you talk to me like that.” As I remove myself from the situation for a few seconds, I try to understand what may be upsetting my daughter, because to me, that disproportionate reaction has nothing to do with brushing her teeth.

I remember than she had been trying to show me a world she had built in Minecraft all afternoon. I was busy with my three-year-old, and helping her twin with homework. I kept saying “not right now” and “I’ll come find you when I can sit down and see it.” However, that moment never came. We carried on with our crazy afternoon, took showers, prepared dinner, had dinner, and before I knew it, it was time for bed. So, I sent her to brush her teeth. Then, it hit me. I realized I had done the same to her with my actions. I told her “No” repeatedly ruring the afternoon.

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After she brushed her teeth and got into her bed. I sat down with her and told her “You’re the sweetest girl I know. I had never heard you yell at me like that. Is there something bothering you? How can I help?.”

She opened up about how I had been ignoring her all afternoon, and how she really wanted to share with me this really cool world she had created in Minecraft. She had been patient all afternoon and had cooperated with me, and trusted that I was going to follow through with my promise to sit with her and let her tell me all about her exciting accomplishment. When she realized that wasn’t going to happen she snapped at me.

After this conversation, we hugged, I apologized for not having kept my word, and I promised I would sit with her the following day. Immediately after, without being prompt or asked to, she apologized for yelling at me and being rude. See? I modeled the behavior I expected from her, and she learned it.

Had I reacted to her “NO” in the heat of the moment, the situation would’ve been very different. It would’ve probably escalated, we would’ve entered a power struggle, I would’ve probably yelled at her for yelling at me, I would’ve missed the chance to connect with her, she would’ve resented me, she would’ve lost interest in sharing her important things with me, and our relationship would’ve suffered.

I am certainly not perfect. I mess up on a daily basis, but I wanted to share with you a situation in which I chose the right way to act, setting a good example for my daughter.

Respectful children are raised by respectful parents. To Learn Respect, Children Must First Be Respected

Much love, Diana-

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Much love, Diana-

Touched by Childhood Cancer… Savor Every Moment With Your Little Ones

My friend’s daughter was diagnosed with cancer last week. She has sarcoma in her spine, and will start chemo next week after her second high risk surgery in less than 2 weeks to remove the tumors.

I’ve been helping taking care of her other two children, since they don’t have family here, while they went through the heart wrenching process of figuring out what was wrong with her. It wasn’t until today that it really sunk in that this is not a temporary illness. She’s really sick and her road to recovery won’t be an easy or guaranteed one.

She’s only nine years old! Just like my twins. Kids shouldn’t have to go through things like this. A nine year old shouldn’t have to worry about whether her treatment will be painful. She shouldn’t have to worry about whether she’ll be alive for her 10th birthday. She shouldn’t be scared because she knows she has cancer, and cancer kills a lot of people.

Life is fragile and unfortunately can change in an instant. Don’t take any minute with your children for granted! Yes, they drive us crazy at time; yes, we feel like failures on a daily basis; yes, sometimes we wish we didn’t have the tremendous responsibility that is raising little humans; yes, we feel like a broken record sometimes; yes, we wish we had more time for ourselves … yes, yes, yes… all that and more is true.

But believe me! We are lucky! Those of us raising healthy little ones are incredibly blessed. We sometimes forget it, but it’s worth remembering. We don’t have to worry about whether we will see our child will grow up. We don’t have to worry about caring for a sick child while still showing love and attention to our other children. We don’t have to see our child suffer as she holds on to life. We don’t have to worry about whether the new treatment will save our child’s life. We don’t have to worry about keeping our child’s spirit up when she wants to give up. We don’t have to worry about whether we can afford the medical treatment our child needs. We don’t have to worry about all these life altering things.

We worry about much, much simpler stuff, such as whether the homework is done, whether she’s eaten her veggies, whether she’s learned how to read, whether she’s brushed her teeth, whether she’s in bed on time… We worry about stuff we shouldn’t really worry about.

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We shouldn’t let the little daily life events get on our nerves and prevent us from enjoying our children. We should enjoy them as they are, enjoy the messiness of childhood, enjoy the inevitable occasional chaos of parenthood, enjoy the little hugs and kisses, enjoy the loud and constant background noise that surrounds us, enjoy the daily lessons we learn, enjoy the ups and downs. Just enjoy life with our kids!

Take every opportunity to tell them how amazing they are, how much they lighten up your life. Take every chance you get to hug them, kiss them, cuddle with them, listen to their stories, read with and to them, play with them… BE with them, fully present and conscious.

Because life is fragile and precious, and we should never take it for granted!

Much love, Diana-

5 Ways to Stop Being a Toxic Critical Parent

After my last two posts, you might have realized that you are more critical than you would like with your child. No need to go into instant panic mode if you’ve caught yourself being overly critical, but it is time to change your ways. Experts say that the negative impact on wellbeing that overly critical parents have, is comparable in scale to that observed in people who have suffered a bereavement. Thankfully, We can overcome our natural tendencies and break the cycle.

1. Awareness

You’re probably the last to know whether you’re an overly critical person. If someone says you’re too critical, you probably are. The first step to change our ways to be aware that we need to change. Go back to my previous post and check yourself.

2. Listening

There is no better cure for constant criticism than patient and respectful listening. Listening to our children doesn’t mean we have to agree with what they’re saying, or that we have to give in to all of their demands. It just means that we make a sincere effort to understand their point of view, and to acknowledge their feelings and perspective.

If you find yourself constantly repeating things, and frustrated because your child doesn’t listen; check how you’re modeling what listening is.

 

3. Avoid Overreacting and Creating Mountains Out Of Molehills

Before opening your mouth to criticize or point out something wrong about your child, stop and question yourself. Is that really a necessary, useful, constructive and uplifting feedback? If the answer is no, learn to put things in perspective and let things slide every once in a while.

Strike a balance between being in charge and letting your child have freedom. Even if you don’t like the mismatched socks or the messy playroom, swallow your criticism and give your child space to learn from his mistakes and become the person he’s meant to be.

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4. Describe Behavior, Not The Child

When there’s really a behavior that needs to be addressed, show respect to your child and focus on the negative behavior rather than speaking negatively about your child. By focusing on behavior, you can help your child see her actions as something she needs to work on rather than questioning her self-worth.

Of course, avoid any kind of insults and character assassination. As you know, our words become our child’s inner voice. We want that inner voice to be positive and empowering, not critical and destructive.

Finally, avoid making generalizations. When correcting your child, describe the specific situation. Instead of “you never listen,” try “you did not listen to me now when I asked you to empty your backpack.” That way, your child understand that there’s something specific they can work on and change. Whereas if it’s something they ‘always’ do, they will assume it’s part of their character and will feel less capable of changing it.

 

5. Give 5 Positive Comments For Every Negative One

Like Dr. Phil says “It takes 1,000 ‘atta boys’ to erase one ‘you’re an idiot.” Make it a rule for yourself to make sure you give 5 positive comments to your child for every negative one. At the beginning it’ll be difficult to focus on the positive and embrace your child as she is, but the more you do it, the easier it will be.

Make your praise and positive comments as descriptive as possible. Avoid using empty or vague comments such as “Great job” or “Good girl.” Instead describe what they’ve done that you felt needed to be note “You were very loving when you helped your sister climb up the stairs,” or “You did a tremendous job cleaning up your toys after your playdate.”

Try to make you statements about them, not about you. Notice I didn’t say “I like how you cleaned up your toys,” but “You did a tremendous job cleaning up your toys.” There’s no condition for my liking them. The idea here is to help your child develop a sense of internal evaluation, allowing them to take responsibility for their actions and pride in their achievements.

Let’s all work on being less critical to our children!

Much love, Diana-

Effects On Children Of Constant Criticism

As parents, we often tell ourselves, that our criticism, of course, is well-intentioned. We criticize because…

  • We are anxious about our child’s future
  • We want them to be their best selves
  • We want them to reach their potential (whatever that means in our head)
  • We want the best for him
  • We want them to have a great life and career
  • We are setting high standards for their lives
  • We know better
  • ….

We wholeheartedly believe that of our criticism is constructive. We might even think it is not criticism at all, but rather necessary nagging and well-intentioned, unsolicited advice. However, nothing could be further from the truth.

As I very well know first hand, children raised by an overly critical parent often suffer from long-term negative effects from this type of childhood. These are some of the many negative effects that constant criticism has on children. When frequent criticism persists, all efforts to improve our family dynamics will surely fail.

1.Damaged Self-Esteem and Low Confidence

Children of overly critical parents will spend most of their lives wondering what’s wrong with them and why they can’t seem to do anything right. They will not be able to understand that the problem lies within the parent, and will believe it lies within themselves. They will be left with the constant and uncomfortable feeling that there’s something fundamentally wrong with them.

They will become overly critical of themselves, because their inner image is damaged. They will have a constant inner critic ready to tell them all that’s wrong with them. This will lead to a very low self esteem, low self-confidence and a feeling of worthlessness.

2. Damaged Parent-Child Relationship

Children of an overly critical parent will often grow up to resent that parent. Children will certainly tend to distant from us when we display this behavior. Being constantly criticized will make them not want to be with us, not trust us, and not want to share anything with us. They know that regardless of what they share, they will be criticized or questioned, we will find something wrong with them, and they will be made to feel inadequate.

Who would want to have a relationship with someone who makes them feel that way? Not me! The problem is that children can’t really escape from this relationship until they reach adulthood, so they have a sense of being trapped. Additionally, they love us, with all their heart, so their feelings make them feel even more insecure and inadequate, because they realize they love a person who’s inflicting pain on them.

Constant criticism will most likely lead to anger and defiance, or secretiveness and withdrawal; which will then lead to even more criticism then more defiance or withdrawal, and so on. This cycle will repeat itself over and over again, creating a completely toxic relationship.

 

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3. Long-Term Mental Health Issues

As I very well know for personal experience, an overly critical parent can create an anxious or depressed grown up. Unfortunately the effects constant childhood criticism  don’t stop at childhood. The effects often carry through into adulthood, often requiring therapy to heal the inner child and stop the destructive inner voice created during our childhood.

Children of overly critical parents, spend their adulthood trying to be “perfect” while fully believing they never will be; trying to figure out what’s wrong with them; wondering whether anyone will ever love them just the way they are; and questioning and testing anyone who dares to do so. Therefore, they will spend a big part of their adult life trying to recover from their damaged childhood.

4. Self-Sabotage, Addiction and Unhealthy Coping Mechanisms

According to many studies, children with overly critical parents are more likely to fall into addition patterns as they get older. Addition can be in the form of illegal drugs, alcohol, obsession with physical appearance, sex or food among other things.

In my case, food was my go-to drug. Whenever I felt inadequate, which was most of the time, I would turn to food to soothe and calm my inner child. This obviously led to obesity and other health problems, that I have slowly overcame. The road to recovery from this type of childhood is difficult and never ending.

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Those of us who were raised in an overly critical environment are more prone to repeat the cycle, because we don’t know how to express love to our child in a different way; because we are trained to focused our attention in the negative things; and because we still try to fix ourselves.
This is one of the reasons why I became so interested in positive and conscious parenting. I don not want my daughters to go through what I went thought. I don’t want them to have a happy life despite their childhood, I want them to have a happy life and be well-adjusted adults because of their childhood.
Were you raised by an overly critical parent? Do you see yourself suffering from any of these long term effects? I hope if you do, you are on the road to recovery, and I applaud you for doing all you can to better yourself for your own sake and the sake of your children.
Much love, Diana-

 

Strollers

1. Umbrella & Compact Strollers

GB Pockit Plus

This stroller is unbelievable! With its innovative two step folding technique, the Pockit+ folds into a compact, handbag-shaped package in seconds. This stroller is cleverly designed to stand alone when folded, and has an automatic fold lock for security when folded and for easy transport or storage.

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The Pockit+ has one-hand push for convenient pushing and steering, adjustable harness system can be easily set at different heights and fastened or loosened for a cozy and secure fit, and a comfortable and multi-adjustable seat-back meets the need of every child, whether sitting up or reclining for a relaxing sleep.

This amazing stroller can be used from birth (when used with car seat) up to 55 lbs, and with its innovative design allows it to fit in an overhead compartment of an airplane, so it’s the ideal companion when traveling with a child.

Summer Infant 3D Lite

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We got so much use out of this umbrella stroller during our last trip to Europe. It’s sturdy and super light weight, and carried our 2 year old daughter without issues down the streets of Madrid, Salamanca, Caceres and many other magical places, with ease.

3Dlite features an innovative air-light aluminum frame which makes it super lightweight to carry and push – yet durable enough to stand the test of time! With its open design, you can easily access the large storage basket or recline almost flat which is ideal for on-the-go naps or diaper changes!

BabyZen YoYo +

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Going far afield with a child in tow? With the new 2016 BabyZen YoYo+ 6+ Stroller, it’s easier than ever: this year’s version of the stroller that folds up small enough to fit into an airplane overhead compartment has some great new features. The BabyZen YoYo+ weighs only 13 pounds. In addition to that teeny-tiny fold, it has a reclining seat, an extendable leg rest, and the “soft drive” system, which enables you to navigate over rougher terrain without having to lock the wheels in place.

2. Luxury Strollers

Quinny Rachel Zoe Jet Set Moodd Stroller

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This Rachel Zoe x Quinny Special Edition merges your favorite Quinny stroller with Rachel Zoe’s unparalleled, award-winning fashion sensibility. This fashionable stroller is truly one of a kind, inspired by the jetsetter lifestyle and paying homage to the luxurious detail found in the design of vintage leather luggage. Premium cognac leather and oversized gold detailing complement classic black and white fabric for a look that is tailored to perfection, allowing parents to walk their way in style. Not only the stroller is amazing, but the many accessories that can be added to it, are to die for if your pockets are deep enough.

Stokke Xplory Newborn Stroller

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This stroller is gorgeous and it allows your child to be up close to you and far away from the dust of the ground. The height of the seat is adjustable to raise your baby higher for interaction.

This stroller is truly one of the best strollers on the market. The versatility it has is amazing. It can be set in so many positions.

 

Bugaboo Donkey Weekender

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OMG! This is stroller is so beautiful! The bugaboo donkey weekender is in a totally fabulous blue-grey marle colour with super classy hints of cognac leather on the handlebar and bumper bar. It comes with a lovely and chic Bugaboo Weekender bag.As expected from bugaboo, the weekender bag isn’t just your average overnight bag. It screams class with its quality fabrics, diamond embroidered lining, hidden pockets, removeable wallet, tan leather handles and the all important embroidered bugaboo branding.

This stroller converts for one baby or two, as you can see in the section below about double strollers.

 

3. Double Strollers

Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat

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This is one of my absolute favorite double strollers! We used it from with our twins until they were 4 years old, navigating the streets of New York City, and with our singleton until she was out of the stroller. It’s a fantastic, versatile, and easy to maneuver stroller!

Bugaboo Donkey

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This is stroller is versatile with 19 different configurations. The Bugaboo Donkey expands into a side-by-side double stroller and back to a single one with a very spacious and chic side luggage, in just a few simple clicks. The expandable side luggage basket keeps essentials at hand with room to pick up more along the way.

The Bugaboo Donkey is the only pram on the market that expands width-wise to convert from single mode to double mode.  It can also accommodate two baby capsules, two bassinets or any combination of baby capsules, bassinets or seats you need.

The Bugaboo Donkey is easy to push and maneuver with one hand thanks to the front swivel wheels and tight turn radius. No terrain is too rough for these big foam-filled tires, even when the stroller’s fully loaded or converted to a double stroller.

To convert the Bugaboo Donkey Stroller into double you just have to purchase the Duo Extension Set.

4. Running Strollers

Single: BOB 2016 Revolution PRO Jogging Stroller

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BOB’s best all-terrain stroller has all the features you need and is suitable for children from 8 weeks old and up to 75 pounds. I love this running stroller. This is BOB’s most deluxe all-terrain stroller. It has hand-activated rear drum brakes for the best downhill control. The front wheel can swivel for top maneuverability or lock for added stability. The state-of-the-art suspension system takes bumps in stride and the adjustable handlebar provides a perfect fit for parents. Pair it with the BOB B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat by Britax to create the best travel system for your lifestyle.

Double: BOB 2016 Revolution PRO Duallie Jogging Stroller

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The Revolution Pro Duallie is BOB’s most deluxe on- and off-road stroller for larger families. Fully loaded for all your adventures, this stroller is perfect for intense workouts or casual strolls, when you want both kids along for the ride.

The Revolution Pro Duallie is the most deluxe, 2-kid all-terrain stroller from BOB, the #1 jogging stroller. Hand-activated rear drum brakes make for the best downhill control. The front wheel can swivel for top maneuverability or lock for added stability. The state-of-the-art adjustable suspension system takes bumps in stride and the adjustable handlebar provides a perfect fit for any parent. Pair it with the BOB B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat by Britax to create the ideal travel system.