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Posted 8/24/16 at 2:01 PM | Trace Embry

The Secret to Raising a Perfect Teen

The secret to imparting character into your child may be right under your nose: chores. Chores are crucial. In fact, it is so crucial it may be the secret to raising a perfect teen.

Chores play an important role in your child’s success. However, many parents miss this. Instead, they dread asking their teens to do things around the house. Unfortunately some parents, as well as their children, consider many of these tasks to be “beneath them” or drudgery.

Picture Provided By Jeff Moser

Rather than thinking of chores as drudgery, wouldn’t it benefit our children to see these tasks as preparation for the real world?

Cleaning windows, scrubbing soap scum from around sinks and faucets, and cleaning toilets are all jobs that require a degree of drudgery. According to Oswald Chambers: “Drudgery is the touchstone of character.” FULL POST

Posted 8/18/16 at 3:47 PM | Marianne Kurtz

Center of Attention

Does your son or daughter always has to talk when you talk with someone or get your attention the moment you get on the phone? I have not met a parent yet that has not had to train their child to stop doing this. Something about being the center of attention to a child seems almost innate. I'm not sure the childish logic of this continuous action but I am sure how to train for it.

Everyone's child has some special talent that mommy is so proud of and she just wants everyone to see what her kid can do, "Come here Tommy and show so and so how you sing that song or dance or sing and dance" whatever the case may be. Well, now little Tommy is the center of attention and WOW does he like it and he really is pretty cute and maybe even sings and dances just perfect but...!

But have we as the loving parents who just want our kids talent to be seen just created a monster? The answer is that it doesn't have to be that way. You can train your child that even though you might have brought attention to them for a moment in giving them the "stage" to show what they can do it was and always should be to give the glory to God because He gives the talent. AND...that doesn't mean they will always be the center of attention. FULL POST

Posted 8/9/16 at 10:36 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Stand Up For What You Believe In

It's easy to say what you believe in behind closed doors but what about when you are out in public. As the world gets louder about what they believe in it's time that Christians and parents who believe in spanking, (not beating their kids) controlled discipline, speak up for what the Bible says.

Too many opinions about it not being the correct way to discipline! It is the Christian way and IT does work when consistent and not done in anger. As Christians we cannot just sit back and watch the world tell us how to raise our children when the answer lies in the Word not the world.

The problem has been not being consistent which in turn leads to anger in discipline and that is where the problem begins because then you get mad and see red. Don't beat them down with words or an object or your hands, Train them up in peace, love and the rod of correct - I call this my paddle! ! It is better to walk away and take a breather from any situation if you are angry and get over it before dealing with it...disciplining children should be no different. Walk away for a moment; don't keep saying stupid stuff and expect things to not blow up in your face. Take a moment, get over it, think reasonably and then deal with it in peace. If you spank in anger you impart anger; spank in peace and surety that you know "Spare the Rod..." then you impart peace. It works!

Posted 7/25/16 at 11:19 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Insecurities Suck! (As I Find Myself)

The Frustration of Insecurities!

Insecurity can come in many different forms but being insecure about people loving you is possibly the bottom line.

I remember back to the days when I believed what people told me, the words “I love you” had meaning and a purity to it. Now, I’m not sure if it’s just the years of hearing people say it and then leave that same love behind for the smallest reasons (sometimes also in the name of love) or if those words are just thrown around like its nothing. Kind of funny that I used to think it was such a special sentence to hear and now it’s just a phrase “Luv ya”, “love ya”, I heart you, however you say it…and I am guilty too. I have definitely said it too prematurely but I feel like I’ve finally learned not to throw it around like it is just a phrase.

Fast forward 20 years and I even doubt my kids love me…why is that? I know they do…that’s how ridiculous it is. Insecurity: lack of confidence or assurance; self-doubt FULL POST

Posted 7/10/16 at 8:00 PM | Trace Embry

2 Examples how America’s Definition of Family is Changing

The definition of family seems to be changing with our rapidly changing times.

Picture Provided By Keoni Cabral

1) The Poly Family

In our society, even the Christian kids are believing that two moms; two dads; or a “poly family” are as legitimate as the traditional family of one man and one woman.

Terms like “family” and “marriage” are being grossly redefined in our post-modern world.

A decade or so ago, gay marriage would have been thought of as an oxymoron—as were poly families.

This is producing a slippery slope where “anything goes.”

Please discuss with your children the importance of a proper view of family. Our future depends on it.

2) Blended Families

Large numbers of blended families are a result of high divorce rates. We continue to mess with and complicate God’s ecosystem. Family problems will thus continue to be more and more complicated. FULL POST

Posted 7/10/16 at 7:36 PM | Trace Embry

Is There a Link Between Food and Teen Behavior?

You may not be aware that there is a link between food and teenage behavior.
Your teen’s diet may be a contributing factor to behavior. A solution is proper nutrition in your
home. When it comes to parenting, nutrition is often grossly overlooked. Obesity is only one
byproduct of a poor diet. What we feed our kids also affects their behavior.
Picture Provided By Michael Stern
Food boundaries need to be consistent and considered inside your homes. So, how do you
address nutrition at home? Here are two solutions:
Start the Conversation of Food and Teen Behavior

In today’s culture, teens are often exposed to temptations, including food.
If your teen is struggling with an eating habit or weight control, it’s important to remain calm.
Before you implement appropriate boundaries and discipline with food, approach this topic with
your teen.
First, have an open discussion with your teen about your concerns for his/her diet. Explain the
health and behavioral affects food can have on your teen.
Next, work with your teen to develop goals to commit to. Once committed, hold your teen
Remember the Basics

Your teen may not always be willing to take responsibility for their health. In these
circumstances it may be necessary (and wise) to dictate exactly what your child is premised to
In these situations, simply follow the same principles we discuss regularly on boundary
development in this blog and create boundaries your teen must follow.
Conversation Starter: Proper diet and nutrition are often overlooked in our culture of abundance.
Take the time to evaluate your household. What are some steps you can take to improve how
your family should address nutrition?

Trace Embry is the Founder and Director of Shepherds Hill Academy, a Christ-centered
therapeutic residential program, as well as a private accredited boarding school for troubled
teenagers. He is the Host of the "License to Parent with Trace Embry Radio Program." He is also
a public speaker, and teaches parenting classes. Visit his parenting blog at “Insight for Today's
Culture with Trace Embry."

Posted 7/6/16 at 7:10 AM | Marianne Kurtz

Let Your Yes be Yes and Your No be No

This post bears repeating…as parents we tend to answer our children without even thinking about what we are saying. This can lead to mixed signals to the children when saying no to something without really a true understanding of what they're asking. Make yourself listen to their questions and make yourself answer with that full understanding! Then you won't say "no" to the candy bar you really don't mind saying "yes" to. Just listen to them the same way you need them to listen to you - with hearing ears.
The message translation

Matthew 5:33
"And don't say anything you don't mean"

Matthew 5:37

"In making your speech sound more religious, it becomes less true. Just say 'yes' and 'no'. When you manipulate your words to get your own way you go wrong"

Although this doesn't seem very difficult it can be. Especially when you have said no to something and then those cute little faces stare up at you like you just destroyed their life! Don't change your more thoughtful when you say yes or no from the beginning. You can say 'not now' or 'maybe later'. FULL POST

Posted 6/28/16 at 10:16 PM | Trace Embry

Why Permissiveness is More Dangerous than Spanking

In today’s culture spanking is a controversial topic. Many parents avoid spanking. In turn, they
become guilty of permissiveness.
Picture Provided By feminaerecta
Is it possible that permissiveness is more dangerous than spanking?

We’ve become a politically correct society where spanking is often seen as child abuse.
Granted, spanking certainly can be with the wrong motives.
However, permissiveness can also turn to abuse. There’s a fine line between being permissive
and neglect. Both lead to damaging consequences.
Just look around. You will see some of the psychological, emotional and physical problems
facing our children.
Psych-wards today are bring flooded with teens who self-mutilate, overdose on drugs and
attempt suicide. In fact, America now leads the world in teen suicide.
It seems that the more we separate our families from proper discipline, our teens are left with
the consequences.
Conversation Starter: Spanking is a weighty subject in today’s culture. We’d love to hear your
feedback on this thought.

Trace Embry is the Founder and Director of Shepherds Hill Academy, a Christ-centered
therapeutic residential program, as well as a private accredited boarding school for troubled
teenagers. He is the Host of the "License to Parent with Trace Embry Radio Program." He is also
a public speaker, and teaches parenting classes. Visit his parenting blog at “Insight for Today's
Culture with Trace Embry."

Posted 6/13/16 at 2:43 PM | Mark Ellis

Video offers advice to Christian parents with homosexual children

By Mark Ellis

David Kyle Foster, the former male prostitute who once hated God, had a dramatic turnaround in his life after he met Jesus, and a river of new life flowed into his heart. Foster began offering hope through Christ to sexually broken people 30 years ago.

He authored Love Hunger and produced the documentary film, “Such Were Some of You.” His latest documentary, “How Do You Like Me Now?” offers consolation and guidance to Christian parents looking for answers.

“This video is one of comfort and some good advice about understanding what they are up against,” Foster says.

The production prominently features the wise counsel of Joe Dallas throughout, whom Foster considers “a giant in the field of sexual brokenness.”

“When I came out to my parents in 1971 it was a very different world,” Dallas relates in the film.

With compassion for a child’s struggle, he says parents must hew to a message centered on the cross of Christ when addressing gay children: FULL POST

Posted 6/13/16 at 10:50 AM | Marianne Kurtz

The Period Chronicles…Volume III

So…this week has been fun!

I am not sure if it was the food dye I had over the weekend or what but, WOW!

I am not sure how my son is still alive…because it does not matter what he said to me…it was WRONG! ALL WRONG!!

Sometimes I really get why men may choose to not marry…I didn’t like myself at all. I couldn’t stop it though…well, I could’ve but I would’ve had to keep my mouth shut! HA! That wasn’t happening.

I do this tech support from home, I wear many hats, and I renamed myself “Marianne AKA Oscar the Grouch”, just so everyone I work with in the chats would know to stay away from me!

But, seriously…I was nice to my coworkers…I just don’t know why I wasn’t to my son. Is it the “You always hurt the ones you love” thing? I didn’t hurt him, not physically…but I am sure I wasn’t nice. I did however; warn him that I was feeling grouchy and well…bitchy! I was…I really was. FULL POST

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