On Saturday night, I took Abby on a spontaneous little mommy-daughter date. Just a simple trip to the store to pick out a treat. After thoughtfully eyeballing ALL of the choices, she finally decided on an Oreo parfait that we shared in the parking lot, looking up at the HUGE full moon. We were chatting about this and that when I thought about this month's Fishful Thinking newsletter - "By shining the light on your children's strengths, you'll help them value who they are at their best and encourage them to put their strengths into action!"
So I decided to ask Abby to tell me what some of her strengths were - things that she felt like she was good at or enjoyed doing. She seemed surprised at the question. "I don't know," she said with a shy smile. After giving her a few seconds to think about it, I told her I could give her an example of a strength she had shown just that morning. Her eyes lit up as I mentioned how she made Daddy and me a special surprise breakfast (frozen waffles and an apple), cleaned her room, and even helped Noah clean his room. "You like to help others and do nice things for people. That is one of your strengths!"
She was all smiles. :)
That example helped to get the dialogue going, and we "shined a light" on other things like being a good reader, remembering to practice piano, helping Noah, being a nice friend, sharing with others, smiling all the time, giving lots of snuggles, and she also said, "I am good at school. I like learning!"
I loved that one especially since that was part of an answer I had shared in discussions on Fishful Thinking Facebook and Crowdtap pages asking us parents to reflect on our strengths. My love for learning is something that I've hoped to instill in my kids along with striving (major emphasis added) to be a glass-half-full, bounce-back, compassionate, goal-oriented, appreciate-the-little-things type of person.
That's why Fishful Thinking has appealed to me so much. Not only does it provide ideas and activities to help my children develop these qualities, but I continue to learn and be strengthened as well.
I plan to try out the new activities listed in the newsletter with the kids. I am sure Abby and Noah would LOVE it if I gave them "a bowl full of ingredients" and let them "develop creativity" by coming up with a new recipe. That would probably be a good one for me to try too. Heaven knows that my cooking abilities could use some strengthening!
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