Posts tagged ‘Peanut Gallery ‘




What would your mother say….about teens and alcohol?

It’s Wednesday, aka Moms Council Day! Here is the question of the week and my answer below. If you want to read the setup, as well as what the rest of the Peanut Gallery had to say, here’s the link. Hit or miss, I’d love to hear what you think….

http://orlandpark.patch.com/articles/does-early-drinking-lay-groundwork-for-a-future-alcoholic-momtalk-qa-4

Q: How have you, or how would you, address the topic of alcohol with your teen? Do you think allowing your teen a small glass of wine with dinner on occasion is wrong?

A: I’ve allowed my teenage son a supervised sip of alcohol from time to time – occasion permitting. Do I think a taste of champagne during holidays, or a sip of my cocktail at a wedding, is committing my son to a lifetime of alcoholism? The answer would be no. My husband and I will often have wine with dinner, or even a stronger offering, many times in front of our children. We choose not to hide, because by doing so we are categorizing alcohol consumption as wrong and forbidden, and in the eyes of a teenager this can be perceived as glamorous. Better to behave as if wine or a cocktail is an accepted and normal part of life, within moderation. The struggle has been more about the discussion of alcohol with my teenager. He’s aware of the consequences of underage drinking, as well as the dangers of drinking and driving. Our deal of the moment involves a “no questions asked policy” as long as he calls me for a pick up from any situation involving alcohol. Not exactly perfect, but better than him driving or catching a ride from someone intoxicated. My preferable situation would have him stay away from such parties, or for that matter, any gatherings using the dreaded red plastic cup.

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1 comment March 30, 2011

What would your mother say….about kids and cell phones?

 

It’s Wednesday, aka Moms Council Day! Here is the question of the week and my answer below. If you want to read the setup, as well as what the rest of the Peanut Gallery had to say, here’s the link. Hit or miss, I’d love to hear what you think….

http://orlandpark.patch.com/articles/babes-of-the-cell-phone-age-momtalk-qa

 

Question: At what age should a child be allowed to carry a cell phone? And why? What parameters should be established for its use and how do you enforce them?

My Answer: Junior high school seems to be the right time for kids to carry a cell phone, at least that’s the case in our household. It made sense since our sons were involved in school activities and extracurricular sports programs that made it easier to organize pick-up times and location. At that age, they also started going out with friends, so it made it very convenient to contact or check up on them via the cell phone. Our fourth grade daughter, on the other hand, is already salivating for one but for no other reason than many of her friends already have cell phones. Regardless, my husband and I are holding strong to our junior high cutoff. While this rule is fine for our family, it may not be so for others. Some families I know choose to give cell phones to their much younger children who attend summer camps or after school day care. It gives them better access to their children as well as a sense of assurance. More important than the age requirement, parents should consider implementing strong parameters on cell phone use. Limitations on texting and photo or video access should be set, as well as explained. If kids really want the extra services, or have their sights on a smart phone, then they should be asked to contribute financially to the phone plan or perhaps be given extra household chores. We’ve taught our sons that owning a cell phone is a privilege that can easily be taken away due to misuse, poor grades or bad attitudes. From our experience, the threat of taking away a cell phone trumps any form of disciplinary action.

Add a comment March 16, 2011

What would your mother say….about unruly neighborhood kids?

It’s Wednesday, aka Moms Council Day! Here is the question of the week and my answer below. If you want to read the setup, as well as what the rest of the Peanut Gallery had to say, here’s the link. Hit or miss, I’d love to hear what you think….

http://orlandpark.patch.com/articles/what-to-do-with-a-neighbor-kid-who-cant-play-nice-momtalk-qa

 

Scene: You’re playing outside with your children and little Johnny comes along to join the fun…again. He’s a nice kid, but can get overly excited, and even aggressive, at times. He also stays on your side of the block for hours on end, without any parental checking-up-on.

Question: How do you address the situation with the neighbor? Are you responsible for the safety and well-being of this child (in addition to your own) since you’re the only adult present?

My Answer: In my neck of the woods, moms act as cook, nurse, craft leader, playground supervisor and disciplinarian to all children, regardless of whether those kids are her own. I wouldn’t say it’s my adult responsibility to assure the safety and well-being of a child not my own, but certainly my neighborly responsibility. But it’s also my neighborly responsibility to be upfront with the parents, especially if the situation is ongoing. The scenario presented assumes the mother is being negligent with her child. The question that begs to be answered is “why?” Is there a situation that keeps the parent from supervising their child’s outdoor play? Young siblings, work, or illnesses are some possible guesses, as is plain old parental fatigue. If it’s a real situation and I can lend a hand, then sure I’ll be happy to do just that. However, if the mother sees me as a free babysitter in order to chat on the phone or shop online, then it’s an entirely different story. I would insist she be present when her child plays outside, or sadly, discourage my own kids from playing with hers. Who wouldn’t want to be considered Best Mom of the neighborhood, but if the adjective “schmuck” comes with the title, I politely decline.”

4 comments March 9, 2011

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