Technology Tuesday: #waituntil8th

We get asked at every parenting seminar, in every school and church where we speak.  “When is the right age to give kids a cell phone...?”  

We recently heard about a new trend that is sweeping the country, and will undoubtedly be a part of our answer from here on out.  It’s called #waituntil8th and is for parents who feel concerned about the effects of smartphones on the kids they love.  One such mom in Austin, TX started the movement...

Read More

Tracking Through the Ages

We recently spoke in Mobile, AL, for our third time at the yearly Parent Summit held at Spring Hill Baptist Church.  Over the years, we’ve developed some sweet friendships with the church staff and members.  Our friend, Erica Holloway, the children’s minister, wrote these words to introduce the Are My Kids On Track conference.  They made us laugh and tear up as we thought about all of you.  We wanted to share them with you to remind you that we get it.  There is SO much on a daily basis...  

Read More

Technology Tuesday: To Siri With Love

Last month, we were teaching our class called Taming the Technology Monster.  As always, by the time I finished talking, the parents in the room looked stricken.  It’s probably the most alarming issue for parents of all ages in this technology-saturated world.  One woman raised her hand and said, “I’m a mom of littles and you’ve sufficiently terrified me.  Can you tell me one thing that technology has done for good in the lives of our kids?”

There are a lot of things.  We are big fans of Common Sense Media and the Empathy and Social Skills building apps you can find there for kids... 

Read More

Technology Tuesday: Should I Help My Teenager Have Social Media?

Our 13-year old son just got his first phone, and he does not have any social media accounts. He’s not interested in opening any - but lots of his friends have them.

Last week, 1500 miles north of us in a different state, a 17 year-old friend of ours (who also does not have social media) discovered that some girls had created a fake Snapchat account under her name, and started posting very distasteful, false photos of a girl they claimed was her...

Read More

Facilitating Christmas

I am surprised every year as I talk to children of all ages around the holidays about how they do and don’t experience Christmas... I’m surprised about the entitlement that has swept through the culture of children today.  But I’m not surprised about how the two correlate.

First of all, we believe it is very important for your family to be about giving this season.  We think it is a fantastic opportunity for kids to be a part of what Christmas looks like walked out…

Read More

Technology Tuesday: Do Not Disturb While Driving

Have you updated your iPhone to iOS11?  If so, you might have noticed that your screen goes dark and displays a “Do Not Disturb While Driving” message.  It’s one of the features of Apple’s newest operating system, and one that can be REALLY helpful in the lives of the kids we love.  

When this feature is turned on, your iPhones stays silent if you receive a text.  The sender, however, will receive an automatic reply that lets them know you’re driving... 

Read More

Instilling Gratitude in Kids

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Raising Boys and Girls!! Today, in honor of Thanksgiving, we wanted to share an excerpt on gratitude, from one of our books, Modern Parents, Vintage Values..., written by Melissa & Sissy.

What It Looks Like

In Mark 10:13-16, Jesus calls a child up to him from the crowd.  He calls and the child comes.  In other words, the child responds.  But, first, he must have seen and heard Jesus...  

Read More

Technology Tuesday: Juul-the New E-cig Disguised as a Flash Drive

“I saw a guy drop his Juul the other day.  The teacher picked it up and handed it back to him, thinking it was a flash drive.”

One of the high school students in a group counseling session told us this story just last week.  And then every one of them went on to talk about the kids in their classes who were bringing their Juuls to school and using them in class...  

Read More

Technology Tuesday: Decoding the Teenage Code Language

Are you doing your best to keep up with your kids’ texts, but only able to understand a word or two inserted in between cryptic emojis?  Welcome to the world of teenagers today.  They use Acronyms and Emojis to communicate more than words these days.  And, as typically happens, we’re often behind the 🎱 

So, I sat with some teenage girls recently to decode their codes.  I asked them about the slang words they’re using lately, the acronyms, and the emojis.  Buckle up for their answers…

Read More

Planting Pansies

I love pansies.  Several years ago, I had an encounter with a few pansies that changed my perspective.  

It was a fall day a lot like today, and I was out for a walk with a dear friend.  As we were walking, of course, we were talking.  I think we were talking about something painful in one of our lives…and how hard it is to understand sometimes, and how to keep moving in the midst.  And then I saw the pansies...

Read More

Technology Tuesday: App Alert - House Party

Welcome to a house party in a whole new way!  It’s the new app teenagers have been talking about in my counseling office.  Basically, it’s an app where you can video chat with up to 8 friends at once.  As a side note, while video chatting 8 friends, you can text one (or several) friends in particular.  It’s enough to make your over-30 year-old head spin…but not theirs!

House Party can be an innocent way to connect with multiple friends at once.  But, as always, we want to be educated, as adults, and help the kids we love be informed.  The primary concerns about the House Party app...

Read More

Technology Tuesday: Should my middle schooler have access to Social Media?

This is a question we're asked weekly in our counseling offices. We always recommend having development serve as a backdrop in making the best decisions for the kids and adolescents we love.

This medical professional (and mom of four) wisely coaches us through what's happening with the brain in this stage of development as we make this important decision. Take a look.

Read More

AMKOT - Girls and Resourcefulness Part Two

Building Blocks for Girls and Resourcefulness

I’ve been doing some research lately on my non-resourceful, happily stuck, and perfectionistically paralyzed girls. There are just too many of them, and I want to help. I want to help but don’t want to help more than they want help. What can I do? What can you do with your daughter to build her resourcefulness? Let’s start where resourcefulness typically starts: motivation...

Read More

What Technology Meant for Bad…

I love to hear stories of kids who are using technology for good…to grow their gifts and impact the world in ways God has uniquely gifted them.  I have one high school friend who is doing just that.  Her Instagram account is @thenashvillekid.  Her tagline is “Just a kid showing off Nashville’s best.”  She’s a photographer, an artist, and talented in so many ways that you can see as you scroll through her photos on her Instagram and her website...   

Read More

AMKOT - Girls and Resourcefulness Part One

I believe girls are inherently resourceful.  They’re adventurous and insightful and capable and strong…often much more than we give them credit for.  But, as a counselor for over two decades, I believe that the resourcefulness of girls today is a disappearing commodity.  What’s happening? What’s changing?  And why?  Again, as in many of these milestones, some of it has to do with them…and much of it has to do with those of us who love them... 

Read More

"Are My Kids on Track?" FALL Update

Pat yourself on the back.   Treat yourself to a fancy cup of coffee.  You did it!  

You made it past the first few weeks of school, and that’s not an easy feat.   For all the years we’ve been working with kids and families, we’ve consistently seen how difficult that transition can be for so many kids and parents.  A new teacher, new friends, new routine, new expectations...

Read More

Technology Tuesday: App Alert - Sarahah

Here we go again…a new social media app that is taking the teenage technology world by storm.  And, according to the kids (and parents) who have been talking about it in my office, it’s a pretty sad and hurtful storm.

It’s called Sarahah, which means “honesty” in Arabic.  It was released in June of 2017, and it purports to help you “discover your strengths and areas for improvement by receiving honest feedback from your employees and your friends in a private manner...

Read More