Phone Etiquette: An Acronym Kids Should Worry About


I read a very interesting article posted on a few days back and it’s been on my mind. The article was warning parents about some of the new acronyms on the street and how to stay hip. A few that have been forever burned in my mind include;

GYPO-Get Your Pants Off

9-Parent Watching

99-Parent Gone

PIR-Parent in Room

NIFOC-Naked in Front of Computer

CU46-See you for Sex

The rest of them baffled me too, as my first thought was sheer horror kids aren’t even attempting to spell out their thoughts anymore! How can a parent compete with that? How in the world am I supposed to hover over cnn, msn, Oprah and the likes to give me tidbits of information on ways to communicate with the bots that are now our children? My second thought was, of course, a personal one. Are my kids using this language? We have two children with cell phones and I take a cruise around the phone every once in a while but the truth is with Kick, SnapChat, text messaging and email how in the world are we supposed to keep up?

I believe the answer to that question is relative to two very important things in a relationship between parent and child;

(1) Responsibility

(2) Trust

If your child isn’t responsible or trustworthy than they more than likely are not ready for a cell phone. Society is putting on the pressure but don’t cave, it will only cause more problems than it’s worth.

The other strategic move to set in place is the village. By village, I mean other parents. We must have multiple people keeping after our kids and willing to share what they may have seen in their kid’s phone about your kids etc. The village has become more important than ever this day in age, build it up!

I figure if none of this works and I still find myself drowning in the abyss of teen social media, I can remember three things:

(1) Their kids people! My home, my rules, my way.

(2) He/she who pays the bill, controls the phone.

If they really push, kids should become familiar with an acronym they will have no choice but to communicate in person at school.

(3) MCMPO: Mom Cut My Phone Off

Just remember parents, this is a two-way street & we can’t forget that. There was a time we lived without cell phones and our kids can certainly survive it (and we can too parents)! If cell phone etiquette isn’t to your standard than take that phone away and shape that kid up until it is! The real danger in a kid’s phone is the parent who is afraid to poke around, unwilling to take action and feels trapped by the social pressure!

I’m always open to suggestions, cell phones can be tricky business!



Saturday Shenanigans


Morning breath, Syrup, Eggs and Orange Juice

Sweeping, sleeping, dancing, cleaning and ringing door bells too

Chatty mornings on the phone, paper crinkling, and newsfeeds scrolling on

Cats meowing, dogs barking, and child’s play on high

Spooning in bed, playing footsie

Morning sex? Yes! Okay

Steamy showers, cologne, lotion, and coffee mixed with perfume

Kids bed head, curling irons heating, and laundry on the stairs

Open windows, cool winter breeze and sun pouring in

To do lists, trash overflowing, laughs and what to do on the brain

Dryer sheets, folding clothes, and possible nap time on the way

More sex, maybe? Okay, yes!

Blair cartoons and sneak away

Closed door romance, music, and what did I forget to do?

Door knocks, Lifetime and mangled hair dos

Jeans and tees, no ironing

All the food you can eat

Cheat day, sleep day, me day or we day

Saturday Shenanigans, the best! Who cares what we do!

12-year-old killed himself, reportedly after being bullied for wanting to join the middle school cheerleading squad

Gender stereotypes continue to hurt our children. I’ve had this discussion many times with parents of boys who are uninterested in football, video games or things that society says “boys should do”. Individuality has no boundaries, and no rules other than what we place on ourselves. This is a problem for society to change, the children shouldn’t have to.

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FOLSOM, Calif. – A community is mourning the death of a middle school student who took his own life after alleged bullying over cheerleading.

Friends say 12-year-old Ronin Shimizu left Folsom Middle School  last year because he was teased about wanting to become a cheerleader on the school squad.

So, he enrolled in a home-school program , according to FOX40.

“Bullying him because of cheerleading…it’s not right.  It’s what he loves to do and that’s a human right to do that,” said 11-year-old Mia Kleinbardt.

“Well…we were aware of allegations of bulling. I can’t speak to specific allegations but like all allegations we investigate them fully,” said school district spokesman Dan Thigpen.

“I heard thasomebody called the bullies and told them that he passed away and they were like shocked…like realized..learned their lesson on how words can hurt,” said Riley.

Those who loved Ronin can only hope…

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Black Family: Wake Up!


Our communities are suffering behind our broken men

The men who suffered as boys and now pass the suffering on as a man

It’s complicated, so I’ll start from the beginning

These generational curses are plaguing our communities

Weakening the heart and soul of our families, that’s right our black men

The world continues to wear them down with very few willing to support and help them

The years of fighting for their place has removed their pride in building healthy homes

The men of today seek only pleasure and have no will to live as the Kings they truly are

The aftermath of these conquests have far reaching consequences that are poisining our homes

The women are now raising their families, tired, but stronger than ever before

She walks with a different attitude around him with pity in her eyes and resentment in her soul

She’s screaming on the inside “Don’t leave. Don’t let me do this alone.”

But when she opens her mouth her tongue lashes out, leaving the scars of the master’s whip

Fueled by heart-break and determination to prove to him wrong, her heart turns spiteful and has nothing but hatred for him

The men of today don’t have the strength or patience to break down her wall of pain

The men of today move on to the next woman, an easy prey, a place to lay

The men of today opt for the easy kill rather than a hammer to tear down roadblocks along the way

The woman, now isolated, and the man out for his own needs leaves our youth seeking attention and very rarely finding the kind they need

Only a child, they have no idea what the world has waiting for them

The justice system lurking near by patiently waiting to raise them up in the system and “teach” them

With no tools, no means to support themselves they turn to a life filled with using others and sin

This young child, a product of the curse, will soon grow up to be a man

Seeking love, broken inside, he will find some young lady to call him her man

With no foundation of family or idea of what a man is supposed to be, he pretends to know the role, walking into it blindly

When it’s more than he imagined he feels no shame, sadness or disappointment in walking away

His family looks just as he remembered and just like him, his child(ren) will find their own way

The men of our country are failing us, it is time to wake the community and take a stand

Stand for the black family by no longer letting your past define who you are

Stand for the black family by being the man and the acting head in your home

Stand for the black family by becoming a stronger man, leave the crutches of the world behind and use your own two feet to walk your path

Stand for the black family by working on the streets on which you live, be the model our youth can look too because the news media doesn’t have much good for them

Stand for the black family by telling the truth about your pain, be a testimony to change the way our young black men are being raised

Stand for the black family by loving the skin you’re in, the purpose on your life is far greater than anything the world would ever imagine

Stand for the black family by telling your children right now today, how much their lives matter and how hungry the world is to help them throw it all away

Stand for the black family, do not cower in the panic the media wants you to feel

Right your wrongs

Forgive those who failed you

Be a better man than them

Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving…

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And mom busied herself around the house, the aromas were flowing and we knew the Holidays have come to the house…

Well, I get sad about this time every year as the co-parenting thing kicks into full swing during the holidays. I really don’t mind being cooperative with the ex’s but that doesn’t mean I can’t miss my children and have a pity party when they’re gone Thanksgiving Day. For about the last five years, my husband and I have graciously given up Thanksgiving to our ex’s and every year I wake up feeling sad. Admittedly, by the end of the day I’ve tremendously enjoyed the time with my darling husband and do look forward to that.

This year, I decided I would put on the superwoman cape and fly around the first few days of the week to pull of Thanksgiving dinner the last night we’re all together before the holiday! Grocery shopping, done. Cooking bits and pieces here & there, done. Already, my heart is filled with joy as I anticipate an evening of movies and good food with my favorite people! Sure, we get to spend plenty of time together but there’s something about the energy that’s created around the holidays that I’ve desperately missed sharing with them. For years, I was so caught up on THE DAY instead of realizing I can capitalize on the time we have now!

My daughter is patiently awaiting my return home so we can finish cooking the remainder of the meal. She is so excited to be a part of this grand time. It’s THOSE moments that are stolen away but it’s those moments that I am now rebuilding by being a little bit more flexible with our blended family time. I am so thankful for each moment and I KNOW my family appreciates me wearing the cape all week to make this happen!

Dinner is shaping up to be a splendid blended good time, the night before Thanksgiving…

God is good!

Family “Unplugged”: Debate Night!

Family “Unplugged” is my version of a family time like we use to enjoy in the good ol days before cell phones, television, laptops, iPods, ipads and any other distracting electronic device you can think of came into our lives. It is so wonderfully refreshing to enjoy each other without the plug binding us all to the ever so entertaining game, article, newsfeed etc. that’s currently showing on-screen. With that said, the husband and I love getting creative with ways to spend this time.


Debate Night “Unplugged”

The Background: We have four children and they love to bicker about any and everything from what color the sun is to how long it took someone to shower etc. They just love to stir up a good argument, and that’s when the light bulb went off!

The Goal: What if, we took all this bickering and turned it into constructive and meaningful banter rather than the kind that makes your ears want to fall off. Thus, debate night was born. The goal is to let them constructively debate one another on topics that affect their lives today! This helps them gain public speaking skills, writing skills, listening skills, the ability to formulate an opinion and use credible material to make their point.

The Topics: A few topics we threw in the hat are; Do uniforms improve education? Is animal testing ethical? Is public humiliation a good form of punishment for kids? Should cell phone use be allowed in class? Is cloning animals ethical? I have to say, out of all the topics they choose from I am hoping they pick public humiliation for punishment as I would love to hear they’re take on some of the videos we’ve seen on YouTube demonstrating examples of that form of discipline.

The Rules: They will each get an opportunity to read the pros and cons of the topic(s) they choose and some time to formulate their argument (no google-good old fashioned brain power). They will have two minutes to present their argument to one another without being disrupted. They will have an opportunity to counter each other’s arguments and then the husband and I will be the judges.

The Fun: Kids LOVE all eyes on them!! We’re expecting a lively household tonight, some good laughs, loud praise and constructive criticism and counter arguments only.

The Take A Way: We all see the world through our own eyes. No two views are the same. It’s important to be open to how others view the world, consider other perspectives but ultimately make the decision for your life that you feel is best.

Raising strong minds! Looking forward to debate night. Go Team!

“Confidence is Scary”

I am pretty sure since the day I found out I was pregnant with my first child 11 years ago I haven’t had a day yet that I haven’t been in complete awe or amazement over something my children do or say. This awe and amazement of course can go both ways because they do have those days where amazement is actually pure disbelief that they did or said that. Nonetheless, it’s amazement and I take it all as a gift. At any rate, it leads me to the more pressing point of how important it is to really TALK to your children. I don’t mean “how was your day?”, “what’s new?”, “how’s your friend?” or any of the other in passing jargon we spew to one another in the midst of homework, practices, and preparing for the following days events. We often assume that we’re getting the job done and somehow with all of the vocabulary they have picked up along the years they’re also fully aware of the meaning for all the words they’ve heard and are using.

This revelation could not have been more clear to me after a very deep and teary eyed conversation I had with my 8 year old daughter. She and I have recently been on a journey to conquer the big math monster, as I mentioned in a recent post Learning Curves: Shaping Mothers Into Experts, and all the technical stuff aside I realized my daughter has become her own bully. I attend her tutoring sessions so we can both learn the concepts and I can better guide her at home and I began counting the number of times she would start to write the correct answer, abruptly erase it and then stare at the paper as if she was paralyzed with fear. I truly believe she is. It was all I could do in our most recent session not to break out in tears as I watched her little mind battle the fear of being disappointed, and incorrect even one more time. Luckily the session was near it’s end but it ended with a silence that blared in my head like a loud speaker the rest of the night.

The following morning I woke up still plagued at what I can do to help her realize how amazing she truly is! As I was brushing her hair I asked her does she know how smart she is? She paused for a moment and replied “yes”. I then asked her if she knows what confidence is and she paused again and said “yes.” I kept brushing her hair, and asked her to tell me what confidence means to her. She paused again and replied “When you go on stage (she’s a dancer) you can’t be scared or mess up because people might laugh at you. Confidence is really scary.” I kept brushing her hair and reminded her of how often she’s been able to conquer some scary moments she’s already had in life and math was the same. I reminded her all of those times had one thing in common, she was confident and she believed she could do it. I outlined what it means to be confident, and admitted to her that confidence is something we have to work on as human beings because people around us are constantly trying to convince us we’re not as special as we think we are. All the while we’re having this conversation, the more I talked about believing in yourself the more the tears welled up in her eyes. I knew I’d found the root problem to the big math monster but the worst part was she knew it too. We both realized we would have to face the worst kind of bully around, yourself.

As I sent her off to school, I couldn’t help but sit in the parking lot for several minutes and ask God what have I done wrong? Why doesn’t my daughter believe in herself after all she has achieved to this point? What haven’t I given her or said to her that makes her beat herself up in the classroom? Or what have I said to her that brought her down? I don’t yet have the answers to these questions but what I realized in having this conversation with her is the notion that we can’t take the self-esteem of our children lightly. They smile, they laugh, and they play because that is what kids do but we have to be able to see past that into their deepest thoughts, steal their private moments and access where all the fears lie. They are much too young to navigate the complicated waters of managing yourself and all the emotions that come with this part of development. As parents we have to be the lifeboat that saves them over and over and over again until they can swim on their own.