8 Parenting Changes Will Make You and Your Kids Great

Parenting Changes

You may ask, “Why Am I a Bad Parent?” I certainly have asked this many times.

8 Parenting Changes for Great Kids

But maybe you aren’t…maybe the experts are a little mixed up! There is so much conflicting information. After observing 100’s of children and fostering several children:

Observe Success

Everything I read, reveals one thing for certain. I am a bad parent. But the behavior of my children tells me otherwise! Are we perfect? No! Yet, many tell me how amazing my children behave and how well-mannered. Yet when I look at the advice given by “parent experts” today, it’s not very successful “clinically speaking”.

You can see for yourself. See how many “good parenting” examples you can find. Go into a grocery store, a Wal*Mart, or any place where people gather. Just watch. Watch the children and watch the parents. The children are demanding and the parents….well, we are begging and bribing our children to be quiet and behave. We are speaking through our teeth with very scary tones. In my humble opinion, the parents speaking respectfully (regardless of the the child’s behavior) show maturity, self-control, and…love. This is our goal. Observe these parents and follow success.

In Practice

As much as I love our children; each and every one of them…we are not a “child-centered” home. {I can hear the gasps, since this is a page focused on children} Sounds funny coming out, but please let me explain further.

As parents, we actually make the decisions. We decide if they can have something they want on every aisle. We decide if they should go to lessons, or eat that food, or brush their teeth. If the parents are to set the example, it must start with controlled and loving behavior. Parenting changes allow the child to actually have a chance to really become their greatest.

When parents began to ask us “how our children behave so well,” I didn’t know why…other than; we have amazing mentors, feed them nourishing food, pray, and keep consistent. In the past few years, we have been pretty busy and isolated taking in children. Read about Fostering here. And honestly that has consumed my time. Suffice to say that before we even had children, we just observed the parents that had well behaved young adults. We figure they have proven success and we didn’t need to recreate the wheel. Yet every time we “go out” to restaurants or stores, we always get praise for good parenting. It actually surprises me because I am lacking in so many ways as a parent. There are so many ways we could be better parents, but truly there is grace. And we are on a quest for the health of some compromised children.

Encouragement from Strangers

At first, I figure people are just encouraging a mom with 4 children (formerly 5)! Then the comments got specific. One lady at a restaurant said, “I will sit next to your family anytime. You didn’t say, “no, no, no” instead you explain the meal and how to sit with good manners. You speak so respectfully to your children.” Do I do this always; of course not. But it sure is great to get such positive feedback.

Another time we were in a bathroom at a hotel pool and my 3 year old son asked what was the “No Smoking” picture, and subsequently what is “smoking”? I simply told him that it was dried herbs rolled up tight and that people would smoke them. There are controversies on this but we could talk about that later. This lady came out of a stall saying how much she loved the “way” I spoke with our children. It didn’t make sense at the time.

On top of that, we have fostered children. Each child throws us a curve ball. There is history; bad experiences and unfortunate parenting with most of the children we get. If you haven’t read our story, check it out Here, and our most accomplished exercise in parenting is in our book! However, with a good diet, love, and parenting; foster children are allowed to be amazing in just a couple of weeks. Within 2 months miracles happen!

Because we continue to get the question, I thought I’d put to pen (keyboard), a candid and genuine glimpse into our family style. I’ll share some very effective techniques in my home, but ones that seem “unacceptable” to some unexperienced parents with children unable to manage themselves at the grocery store.

As I have endeavored to get online to share our love for helping children find a family and get healthy, I have also seen plenty of information that negates what I believe to be good parenting. Our goal is to raise independent, capable, generous, healthy, caring, young adults that will be a part of a better world and not the child who grows up with an entitlement complex and waiting on everyone to give him/her what is desired! (Although admittedly, we empathize.)

Hopefully as you read this more inspiring thoughts will begin on how we can turn this around so that we build a better society in the future; not a media-hunchback, impersonal, sick society…but an athletic, vibrant, engaging society of smart and educated citizens.

My children…

  1. Must do things they do not want to do; bathe, brush teeth, and exercise. My challenge is to make it as fun as possible.
  2. Learn to entertain themselves – Books (our favorites), building blocks, legos…beneficial skills instead of obsessive media!
  3. Do not trick or treat throughout the year- they must eat healthy, even if they are the only ones. We avoid the processed, sugar and refined carbs. Are we perfect? NO! But we are 80-90% clean. You must read this from MIT’s Dr. Seneff.
  4. Eat illegal foods and Pet food! We consume raw milk from farmer’s we know that love and feed their animals nonGMO. We find “pet food” milk more beneficial than “human food” which is processed, heated, robbed of nutrients and placed on a store shelf. Good Resources, Here and Here
  5. Eat good bugs! and lots of them. We drink it, in Soda and Kombucha and we consume probiotics in Salad Dressing and Kraut, sweet ferments, and cultured milk. Beneficial bacteria is paramount to good digestion and good health.
  6. Must “work it off” for unkind behavior; we do jumping jacks, dancing, and run around the back yard. It seems to work the “mean bugs” out.
  7. May skip a meal, if they choose to NOT eat what is served. They seem to really appreciate the next meal (which is the same plate of nutritious food served again).
  8. Use Natural Medicine, use essential oils, and visit Natural Doctors before we go to the hospital! Funny thing is we haven’t had to go, except for 1 Foster Child where we found he had cancerDid you know that 70-90% of our healthcare costs today are preventable and treatable at home…according to the CDC. (Interesting CDC take)

Want to add some more? Hope this inspires more health and happiness in your home!


8 Parenting Changes for Great Kids

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Mandy is the force behind the advocacy portal Real Food Recovery. Since losing a 4 yr old to cancer while fostering to adopt, Mandy founded a nonprofit organization recovering children at-risk using real food, real discussion, and encouragement. As a Wife, Mom of birth, foster, and adopted children, author, Nutritional Therapist, & NRT, Mandy shares simple food tips while volunteering in a local Orphanage to create a model for change. Connect with Mandy through Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
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6 thoughts on “8 Parenting Changes Will Make You and Your Kids Great

  1. Oh, Mandy, those are all great tips!!! Number 6 I especially appreciate. My oldest and I can get in a p–sing match over just about anything, lol. From the time he was little. (We sorta grew up together, ack.) I found that when we were in our “yes, I did”-“no you didn’t” phase of things, if we went for a walk together, everything calmed down immediately! Like magic. The air, the movement, the distraction… that is a magic bullet to take the angry out of the conversation. Thank you for reminding me — he’s 23 now and I’m 59. Both a little older and wiser. At least, he is, lol!!! Hugs 🙂

    1. You are so fun! And I agree! Parenting certainly feels like another level of “growing up!”

  2. I retired but used to work to find homes for foster children in the greater Richmond, Va. area.
    Wish you’d been here then! You’d have been on my go to list!
    All you readers out there, we needed homes for children of all ages from babies on up, though most were eventually returned home and thus not often available for adoption.
    Still, you can greatly impact a child’s life in so many ways and this aspect of it is amazing! We had one foster parent who took a child thinking he was slow and leaned that he just needed special eye assistance, after which he actually tested as gifted, and some who helped children stop stuttering, etc. etc.
    Good foster parents are really important…

    1. Oh, wow! How fun for you Angela! I’m sure you have some stories to tell! These children are so amazing, aren’t they? A little love, good food, and guidance goes a long way. Hopefully we can inspire more good people to get involved.

  3. we say “if you can’t play with us (ie if they’re acting out against someone) then you need to be away from us”, but I think working off the mean bugs might be a good addition. They are welcome to skip meals after 2 no-thank-you bites (time to realize it’s not gross and they are hungry), but I do not serve the same meal until they eat it because there’s stuff I just don’t like and wouldn’t want to face again either. They must follow the rules of the table or leave the table, and yes, I have enforced that by removing a child from a restaurant or family gathering when necessary. We eat “growing food” and things that “give you good poops”. The kids are aware that they are “bacteria farmers”, and that good sleeping and good eating make your owies get better and your body grow. We all have sleep and food and love batteries, and have trouble acting kind when one or another is empty. We are ALL required to apologize (and have this apology acknowledged) if we act badly due to low batteries. The saving grace of my bad parenting moments is bedtime reading and discussing “the story of the day” once the lights go out – it makes up for so much!

    1. Lauren, I love the bacteria farmers! I’m adding that one. Thanks.

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