Boundaries Are Key to Love, Compassion, and Happiness

I love boundaries and am a big fan of them for all the parents I work with. This short video clip has one of my most inspiring mentors, Brene Brown sharing about BIG and speaking to all of us. This is love. Happy Valentine’s Day.

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Opening to the Magic of Our Children

What gifts to our kids offer us? They give us the path and the practice to growing up into the adults, the parents, the human beings we know we can be. Our children not only show us the way, they make it nearly impossible to turn away from it.

It’s an amazing gift. But it’s often wrapped in behavior that looks like disrespect, disruption, acting out, tantrums, and tears.

How do we receive that gift? With anger and resistance or with grace and acceptance? We often need support to unwrap and receive the gifts especially if friends, doctors, or teachers are telling us we need to get our kids to behave like potted plants (decorative but not disruptive).

What if our children are the teachers we’ve been looking for? What if we are the parents our children need more than they need anything else? What if you were a brilliant, capable, and trustworthy parent? You are. If you don’t believe me yet, take me up on the offer of a free Parenting Harmony coaching session.

Parenting coaching isn’t about telling you what to do to change your kids. It’s about changing your attitude towards parenting, towards your children, and towards your own happiness in ways that make your life work. Simple? Yes. Easy? It can be. Most of what’s challenging is our own resistance to change.

My coaches and I love helping you through your resistance. So reach out and let’s get started. 


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The Difference Between Competency-Based and Personalized Learning

Many parents are concerned about whether or not their kids are getting what they need from school. Perhaps your child has special needs (don’t they all?) and you wonder if they could benefit from either a competency based or personalized learning model. I didn’t know much about either of these models so when guest writer Amy Williams offered to write an article for us, I said yes. I hope you enjoy it and learn from it. Please welcome Amy’s article on…

The Difference Between Competency-Based and Personalized Learning

When you consider that a mere one-quarter of public high school graduates in the United States possess the necessary skills to do well academically during post-secondary studies, it becomes more apparent that different learning models are needed to meet the needs of different students.

A hybrid of hands-on instruction plus technology works better than leaving kids alone to learn from computers.

A hybrid of hands-on instruction plus technology works better than leaving kids alone to learn from computers.

Competency-based and personalized learning are two popular models that can be used in the classroom, and both can facilitate learning. While an obsession with standards can potentially snuff out the love of learning, competency-based and personalized learning can have a positive impact when teachers use them to customize programs to meet the specific needs of students.

What follows is an overview of competency-based and personalized learning, a comparison and contrast of these two popular learning models, and a look at what these two models mean for teachers and administrators.

Competency-Based Learning

The traditional school format usually requires students to complete course requirements within a set time frame, and their grades are supposed to reflect their performance during the semester or course. However, with competency-based training, students, rather than being graded for how much actual time they spend in the classroom, are rewarded for the skills they obtain. The key thing is that it focuses on ensuring that all students gain a thorough understanding of the subject matter. Students who do not usually do well in a more structured learning environment, may thrive as they get to learn at their own pace. In fact, the set-you-own pace nature of competency-based learning lends itself to students who choose to study online rather than in an actual classroom.

Personalized Learning

Personalized learning is very much student-centric in that it is tailored to meet the specific needs of students’ strengths, personal interests, and requirements. The curriculum in such a learning model factors into the equation things like the students’ existing knowledge base, abilities, and skills as well as establishes high expectations and encourages students to achieve their personal objectives. With personalized learning, the goal is to have students advance once they’ve shown an extensive knowledge and understanding of the subject matter.


Compare & Contrast

There are numerous points to look at when comparing and contrasting competency-based and personalized learning. Some of the more notable points are as follows:

Transition: Both models provide a way to help students move away from a curriculum that places emphasis on time spent in a class to a curriculum that favors the sort of flexibility that helps students to move forward either by showing mastery of the subject matter or by selecting a learning path most conducive to their needs.
Academic Focus: With competency-based learning, the focus is on allowing students to progress only after they’ve demonstrated thorough understanding of the subject matter. With personalized learning, the focus is on using students’ learning style to create personalized learning programs using specifically selected assignments, material, and projects.
Technology: Both of these learning models are most effective when used in combination with technology solutions that permit teachers to augment their curriculum. In this digital age, classrooms can be equipped with mobile devices, broadband Internet access, smartboards, and more, and these tools can both facilitate students’ learning experience and permit teachers to meet the varied needs of students.

What it Means for Teachers and Administrators

Teachers can employ competency-based and personalized learning methods to accomplish their mandate to instruct students. The following Q&A will shed light on how teachers and administrators can benefit:

Q: Han can teachers use either competency-based or personalized learning in existing classrooms?

A: One of the benefits for teachers who want to make use of competency-based and personalized learning for their students is that the process does not necessarily require an overhaul of what they already have in place. Rather, they can use competency-based and personalized learning strategies in order to customize their existing curriculum or program after reflecting on the various needs of the students in their class. As was mentioned previously, technology available during his digital age — mobile devices, smartboards, and high-speed Internet — are tools that teachers can use to meet the various needs of the students in their classrooms.
Q: What’s the incentive for overworked teachers or administrators to implement something new?
The incentive for teachers or administrators to implement something new is that going this route will help them to achieve positive student outcomes — and it will help teachers and administrators to accomplish this objective more ably than would be the case with an inflexible curriculum. Put another way, even though an investment in technology may be required, the effort to implement something new would give teachers better opportunities to meet the needs of students, which would likely lead to better academic outcomes for students.

Q: If a teacher wanted to do this, how would he or she go about it?

A: There are various steps that can be taken to implement competency-based and personalized learning. The following are some of the general steps that should be taken:

1. Administrators and teachers need to be on board and to take responsibility for the program in terms of development and rollout.

2. Teachers should conduct assessments to determine which students need competency-based or personalized learning options.

3. Teachers need to figure out how to implement these models into their existing curriculums so that the students who need competency-based or personalized learning options can get it.

4. Administrators and teachers need to explain to students and their parents about the different learning models and about how they will help students to do better academically.

5. Assessments need to be performed post-rollout to ensure that the desired student outcomes are being achieved and that the curriculums are meeting the needs of those being taught.

The traditional curriculum has proven to be insufficient at helping many students to acquire the skills they need going forward after high school. Competency-based and personalized learning are useful learning models that be used to customize programs to facilitate the education process.

Author Bio: Amy Williams is a free-lance journalist based in Southern California and mother of two. As a parent, she enjoys spreading the word on positive parenting techniques in the digital age and raising awareness on issues like cyberbullying and online safety.

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Get Off the Couch! (Games to Get Kids Moving)

Computers, smartphones, tablets, TV; technology abounds in today’s world, and kids are using it more than ever.

While yes, using technology certainly provides many benefits for kids (and it gives them entertained while you’re doing what you need to do;) however, too much screen time can be detrimental to their physical and mental health.

Instead of caving in and letting your kids watch TV or play on their tablets, here are some creative screen-free activities that are fun, entertaining and will give your kids the physical activity they need.

Have a Bike Race

RidingRide a bike! bikes is a fun activity for kids all on its own; but, if your kids are craving a bit more action, give them a challenge to complete by setting up a bike race.

Set up a course on your street (if it’s safe,) in a park or somewhere where there isn’t a lot of traffic. You can use cones to outline the course and you can even set up a starting line and a finish line with some tape. On your mark, let your kids ride their bikes and race to the finish line.

Go on a Nature Walk

Spend some quality time outdoors with your kids and teach them about the wonders of the natural world while taking a nature walk.

Before or after dinner, or any other time of the day, take your kids for a walk outside. Take a walk in different locations, if possible; but, even if you can only walk around your neighborhood, there are plenty of ways that you can explore nature together. Examine birds and flowers, talk about the changing leaves, gather nature items (pinecones, acorns, sticks, etc) and create a craft with them when you get back home.

Plant a Garden

  • Physical activity? Check.
  • Getting outside? Check.
  • Learning responsibility? Check.
  • Seeing how their efforts make a difference? Check.

kaylyn watering at rrPlanting a garden is an excellent activity for your kids to partake in! Choose a spot in your yard, give your little ones some kid-friendly gardening tools, seeds and watering cans and let them work the land and plant a garden. They can even create some colorful signs and stepping stones for their garden! They’ll have a blast and they’ll get a real thrill when they reap what they sow.


Create An Obstacle Course

Kids love jumping and climbing, which is why an obstacle course is something they will really enjoy.

Use couch cushions, pillows, toys, tables and anything else you can think of to create an obstacle course for your kids. Let them climb, jump, crawl and wriggle on their bellies to complete the course. They’ll have tons of fun, plenty of giggles and get in some good quality physical activity.

Hula Hoop!

Get some Hula Hoops are awesome.hula hoops and let your kids explore using them. Show them how to move their hips to keep them up and see who can keep their hoop up the longest. Set them out on the floor and jump from hoop to hoop. Use them as a fun alternative to a jump rope. There are so many fun ways you can play with hula hoops and keep your kids active!

Present your kids with these activities and they’ll definitely spend less time on the couch and more time being active.

This post is written by Amy Williams. Amy
is a free-lance journalist based in Southern California and mother of two. As a parent, she enjoys spreading the word on positive parenting techniques in the digital age and raising awareness on issues like cyberbullying and online safety.

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Winter Inspiration for Aspiring Parent Coaches

Do you ever think that getting paid for being a parent coach means you’re greedy? Do you ever think it would be more good, spiritual, or nice to offer your services for free? I’ve had those thoughts too. But the truth of the matter is that you will spend most of your waking hours doing whatever it is you do for money. If you use that time to be a parent coach you are having a much bigger positive impact on the world (and yourself) than if you do some other work that is less values aligned while giving away your parenting coaching “on the side”. So join me now in taking your business to the next level and Becoming a Successful Parent Coach.

Ready? Sign up below for a free strategy session for becoming a successful parent coach. The focus is all on you, it really is free. Once I know I can help you and you want to work with me, then we’ll explore how we can work together and not a moment before.

sign me up

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Becoming a Successful Parent Coach

Are you ready to:

  • Attract your ideal clients? And not just any clients, the ones who make your work feel like the best play ever?
  • Coach those ideal clients to family harmony, confidence in their parenting, and clarity around their values and boundaries?
  • Tune up your inner-game to handle your success and allow it to uplevel your whole life?

Then “Becoming a Successful Parent Coach” may be just the right fit for you.

Reach out now to schedule your free consultation to find out. 

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Harvesting Good Food and Good Memories

kaylyn watering at rrFor my birthday, wanted to keep it simple, celebrate with my family, and give thanks for the abundant support I receive in so many areas.   I went to a pick your own working farm and kid-exploring paradise.

It was a lovely day spent with my daughters and my dad. We went to Miller Farms and took a hayride around 180 acres of pick your own vegetables. I like getting my hands dirty, getting lots of good produce, and helping my daughters know where their food really comes from.playing at Miller Farms
Now we just have to process or store all the cabbage, carrots, onions, leaks, kale, swiss chard, peppers, and potatoes we brought home. Getting food from the fields doesn’t really help unless you know what to do with it.  Luckily, some things are really simple.
Potatoes will keep for months in a cool, dry, dark place.
Kale and swiss chard can easily be frozen. Blanching first will make it last longer.
A bit more involved by still simple is turning cabbage into sauerkraut. The live enzymes of lacto-fermented veggies are good for digestion (which in turn is good for clear thinking and balanced emotions). 
Here are the sauerkraut basics with more details available at
  • Cut, chop, or shred the cabbage leaving out any moldy, rotten or bruised bits.
  • Use a bowl, crock, or canning jar to pack the shredded cabbage.
  • Sprinkle a layer of cabbage 1/2 – 1″ thick.
  • Sprinkle a salt generously over the top of the cabbage.
  • Repeat cabbage, salt, cabbage, salt packing down with your fist or a tamper periodically.
  • Fill your container.
  • Put a plate or other covering over the top.
  • Weight the plate (a jar full of water works) to keep the cabbage below water level (water comes out of the cabbage but if there isn’t enough liquid to submerge the cabbage after a day or so, add some salt water that is about as salty as tears).
  • Check the ‘kraut every couple of days.
  • Eat it when you like it.
Put it in the fridge to slow down fermentation and make it last longer.
making sauerkraut from
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Identifying Your Ideal Parent Coaching Clients

When you are very clear about what you offer and who can benefit from those services, you will enjoy your coaching work and be very good at it. Your clients will be satisfied and you will end your work day with gratitude and money.

Imagine, you actually get paid for having this much fun!

This Exercise helps you find those people you feel so good working with. Let’s look at clarifying your niche.

Who are YOUR ideal clients? Describe them answering questions like:

• What keeps them up at night? What pain would they pay to remove from their lives?

• How will parent coaching with you benefit them?

• How will they feel while working with you?

• How will they feel once you’ve helped them reach their goals?

• Who is energizing for you to work with?

• Describe your favorite clients or your most enjoyable friends. List 10 characteristics that make those relationships life-affirming, mutual, and fulfilling.

Congratulations! You’ve just described your ideal clients.

Now keep those clients in mind and answer the following questions:

• Where do your ideal clients live? What are their daily rhythms like?

• Where do they work? How much money do they make? Do they like their jobs?

• Where do their kids go to school? Home, private, or public school?

• What do they do for fun? Where? With whom?

• What clubs or groups do they belong to?


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How to Have a Peaceful Family

“I just want peace and harmony,” Amy says sounding close to tears. “But my son hits and throws things. He grabs toys from the other kids at school. I want him to have friends but I don’t want to invite other kids over for playdates. What if he  hits them or grabs or doesn’t share or wants everything his way? When I tell him to stop, he doesn’t. I’ve tried talking to him instead of spanking and time outs, but nothing works. I’m so embarrassed.”

Amy has the typical Young Child Protect Safely in Mother's Loving Embrace on Beachcomplaints of someone coming to me for parent coaching. She’s tried everything she can think of to get her child to stop doing the behavior that’s driving her crazy and to start doing the behavior she enjoys.

She’s coming to me because she wants me to tell her what to do to get the peace she longs for. She’s expecting new words – something to say and the right time and inflection to say it – to get her child to listen and obey.

And I help her. I help her get the peace she’s longing for from the inside out. I help her free up her own energy and creativity to find appropriate responses to her child. It’s not about applying a formula or using the right words. If it was, you could just go to the bookstore and buy any one of thousands of titles that promise you a better behaved child in a weekend or less.

It’s not that easy. Real change requires Amy, and you, to look within and learn about yourself as well as looking at your child. It’s a dance of inner work and outer work. A dance of looking within to notice your own feelings, stories, and triggers and learning to be with them without trying to change, blame, or figure yourself out. A dance of outer work setting boundaries, simplifying, and listening danced in ways that allow you more connection and effectiveness with your child.

Peace is an internal experience. It comes from meeting what is with an open mind and an open heart. Welcoming the experience of the moment, the peaceful response is to allow the experience to change us, to affect us, to alter our version of reality and perhaps of ourselves.

Peace is different than calmness. Calmness depends on the outside circumstances. Calm is your child behaving, not talking back, and doing what you say.

Peace is not dependent on the external circumstances. It is an internal experience. Peace starts within the parent.

Parent coacpadre e figlio sul molohing is often 80% about the parent and 20% about the child.

Together, you and I will help you learn skills to create peace within you and to respond peacefully to your child. There are practical, practicable skills you will learn with me.

As you practice the skills from our parent coaching sessions, you’ll experience peace starting within you and flowing out to your child. You will feel how this is different than calmness – deeper, more steadfast, and dependable.

You will have moments of success and moments of forgetfulness. As we work together you will journey through unconscious incompetence, conscious incompetence, conscious competence, and unconscious competence. When you reach unconscious competence you have new habits fully ingrained and no longer even have to think about your response. It’s just become “natural”.

Curious to get started? Book a free consultation with me today.

30 minutes. Free. No strings attached. We get the feel of one another and decide if we enjoy working together so much that we want to do more of it. If so, then I’ll invite you to be  my client and you’ll be happy to say yes. Otherwise, we’ll just spend a pleasant 3/4 of an hour together focusing on you and your family, your goals and dreams, your challenges and what peace means to you.

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Teens and Online Privacy

Thanks to Amy Williams for her contribution. I’m delighted she sent me this article on Teens and Online Privacy (with the cool info graphic) to share with all of you.

Like Parent, Like Child

Lately, there has been chatter regarding our youth’s preoccupation with devices and how they are living a distracted life. Parents read stories about cyberbullying, Internet addiction, Smartphone obsessions, sexting, and the oversharing of personal information. Parents will eventually find themselves questioning a teen’s right to privacy in our hyper connected society.

However, we need to take a step back and consider our own relationship with devices. It is always easier to control our own behavior rather than correct a child’s. Ultimately, we want to carefully consider the message we are sending our children and teens.

8 Ways to Protect Your Kids from the Techno Trap

Here are 8 steps to approach technology that convey a positive relationship with our devices to our children:

Unplug during family time. It is important to power down during family meals, activities, and conversations. Give teens and children your whole attention and send the message that they are more valuable than a text message.

Avoid using your Smartphone while driving. We all know how dangerous it is to text or surf messages while behind the wheel. If you don’t follow your own advice, you can’t expect a child too.

Put down your phone and be active. Take a walk, pick up gardening, hobby or activity that doesn’t require battery life or data.

Limit the amount of time you are online. Display a healthy relationship with technology by shutting it down. Try to set aside time each day to relax or work without the soft glow of a screen.

Start open conversations about technology and Social Media issues. Ask questions and listen to your teen. If they notice you are not hiding concerns they might be willing to voice their opinions freely.

Avoid Social Media blowups. We all have “those” friends who have no filter and post anything they want. Often, a verbal fighting match erupts over taboo topics like politics, religion, homeschooling, and anti-vaccines. Lead by example and refrain from these types of posts.

Don’t expect your teen to avoid game apps, trendy apps, or online shopping if you frequent the sites. Lead by example and do as you say. Actions always speak louder than words.

Discuss and model Social Media etiquette. Be careful what you post online and make sure it’s always positive. Avoid racy or derogative comments. Above all, be mindful that your teen might see anything you post!



The full content of Amy’s article is available here

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