Precious Gifts


Your family is a precious gift.  Think about your life without family.  Your husband or your wife.  Your children.  Your parents.  Your siblings.  Your cousins, aunts and uncles.  Your grandparents.  How empty would your world be without these precious gifts in your life?  Do you tell your family that you love and appreciate them?  If so, how often?  If not, why not?

One of the primary components required for developing healthy family relationships, is thechristmas-present-83119_960_720 expression of admiration towards one another.  Not just when a special occasion arrives, like a birthday or a holiday, but every day.  Every day is a new day and a chance to speak loving thoughts to those that you care about the most.  Can anyone tire from hearing ‘I love you’ or ‘You are beautiful’?  No.  I don’t believe so.  Understand that your expressions of admiration build a fortress that helps guard relationships against difficult times.  Every family faces difficult moments.  Protect your family with a fortress of love.

Your family needs to regularly hear your compliments.  Stay focused on their individual strengths.  Tell each of them what makes you proud of them … today.  Tell each of them what makes you grateful that you have them in your life – today.  Keep speaking your praise towards them and watch what happens.  THEY will achieve greater goals in their lives.  THEY will begin speaking praise over others, including praise over you.

If you cannot find anything complimentary to say, don’t say anything at all.  Smile upon your loved one. Wait until the storm passes within you.  When it does, proceed with expressing your love and your appreciation for them.

Set the example.  Treat your family with respect.  Watch over your children by giving them your undivided attention.  You will unwrap many gifts this holiday season.  Unwrap your most precious gifts, your family, with love and care.

Do you have some thoughts of your own on this topic?  Please leave your comments below.

By, Joanne Henig, President / Co-Founder / Author / #evolution


Make Cleaning Up Fun For Your Kids

my-cleaning-trolleyFun isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when you ask your kids to help clean up the house. That’s why it’s referred to as a household “chore”. But, there are some things you can do to turn the drudgery of house cleaning into a fun time. Here are some ideas from Joy Kids Universe.

• Make believe – Some imaginative moms dress themselves and their daughters up and pretend they’re playing Cinderella. Or, they pretend they’re filming cleaning TV commercials, and mouth their impromptu lines while they’re cleaning.

• Turn it into a game – Section off areas of the house and challenge the kids to clean up the most sections in the fastest time. Make sure that everyone who did a good job gets a reward.

• Break the job down into simple tasks – Don’t dump an entire cleaning operation on a child. Instead, separate the job into individual tasks and ask the child to do one task at a time. Make sure to match the task to the child’s capabilities.

• Use clean-up time to teach your child generosity – Cleaning up is a good opportunity to segregate stuff you and your child no longer need. You can teach your child about donating the stuff to charity. Casey Rose and the Joybug believe this will teach compassion for others and gratitude for what they have.

• Help kids learn while they clean – Use cleaning time to teach your kids about colors, shapes, and other basic things. For instance, ask them to pick up blue things, or store squares. It’s also a good time to teach them how to use basic tools and cleaning implements. It teaches them to learn freely and joyfully each day.

• Set up a regular cleaning schedule – Explain to your kids why you need the schedule, what you expect, and what the time frames are. Ask for their suggestions. Turn it into a running contest with prizes every month, every semester, and an annual grand prize like a weekend at a beach resort for everyone.

It Takes A Village

It takes a village.

Give me five minutes with a child and I can tell you what the mindset of his or her parents is focused upon.

My daughter, now a teenager, used to say I was crazy for making this statement. These days, she understands that the mindset of a child will be very similar to that mother_sonof their parents. Because of this fact, it is extremely important to teach a child about being grateful from an early age. Entitlement is not an acceptable manner of living. Too often parents teach their children from infancy, that it is ok to whine and cry until they receive whatever it is they are seeking. Holidays and birthdays are overstuffed with presents and the credit card debt consumes the parents, but the child is happy. Hmmm, not a great lesson to teach a child.

Then the child grows up and as a teenager the negative behaviors are magnified and the parents wonder why they are dealing with the drama of an out of control teenager. Guess what? I will say, it is the parent’s fault. They taught the child that it was ok to behave like a brat and now they are all suffering the consequences.

The positive part of this problem is that it can be easily rectified by those who choose to take responsibility for themselves and for the lessons they are teaching their children.

There was once a time when people said please and thank you for everything. Families sat down at the dinner table and gave thanks, in whatever manner they felt drawn, took the time to appreciate others and be aware and grateful that there was a hot plate of food on the table. Somewhere along the line, the habit of saying please and thank you, of being appreciative, of smiling and taking in fresh air, the birds, nature, and reading a good book, all disappeared into video games, overpriced clothing, fast food, a life of busy-ness, all with a sense of entitlement.

It’s now time to return to living a happy and gratitude filled life. As adults, as parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles and teachers of all kinds, it is imperative that we take responsibility for reminding ourselves to be actively thankful daily. And to teach this to the next generation. How do we do this?

Here are a few simple steps to redirect you to a path of gratitude:

  1. Smile at others.
  2. Say please and thank you.
  3. Ask questions kindly.  Listen to the answers.  Be respectful.
  4. Be sincere in compliments, choose positive reinforcement.
  5. Say kind things about others, even when they are not present.
  6. Appreciate the little things.
  7. Send a handwritten note. Holiday card, birthday card, thank you note. Use snail mail once a week to let someone know you are thinking of them.
  8. Shake hands and make eye contact.
  9. Read books with positive messages and share them! The library is full of books to help uplift and encourage.
  10. Take time to be with family & friends. Enjoy the company of others.
  11. Leave the gossip and drama at the door. Choose to focus on the good stuff.
  12. And most importantly, remember the Golden Rule. Treat others in the same manner in which you’d like to be treated.

Life is too short to walk in the negative. Focus on the positive, laugh, smile and be happy!

Author Bio:

Caryn FitzGerald is a Business Strategist, Author, Speaker & Leadership Coach. Caryn hosts the international talk show, “Coffee and Coaching with Caryn.” She believes in collaborating, creating and monetizing your passions. headshot1-150x150She specializes in assisting people who are at a cross-roads in life or business, to shift their mindset and actions, creating a pathway to continue on their journey towards attaining their goals and bringing their dreams to life!

Connect with her at:
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