Me in a Tree

Posts Tagged ‘family huddle’


Can parents make a difference for their family?

be that person

Parenting is the hardest job on the planet. Unfortunately, kids don’t come with a “How to parent guide” to make the job easier. That’s where Me in a Tree can help.

Being a parent is about being there for your children. Do you want:

  • a closer family bond
  • to give your kids practical skills they can use to create fulfilling lives
  • children who listen to you
  • the best for your kids but aren’t sure how to help them realize their potential
  • to enjoy your family more


Be That Person

Children do not develop their values and character by being told how to think and act.

Rather it is through their desire to be like someone they value and respect.

As a parent you are in the best position to be that person.

Me in a Tree created The Family Huddle because a close family doesn’t just happen. It’s a result of having a clear plan, a commitment to each other and a willingness to work together to make it happen. The Family Huddle walks you through a fun game-like family meeting, getting the whole family talking, laughing and working together.

Because you don’t want to just be there: you want to be that person for your children.


So, you’re busy – obviously. There are an increasing number of demands on today’s families. Saying noFrom double income parents to that awful 5 am hockey practice to ballet rehearsal, extra demands placed on families can take their toll.

Because you love your children and enjoy spending time with them, it is important to learn to exercise your ability to say no. You have to learn how not to become over committed. For instance, if you worked all week and have a few hours to spend with your children on the weekend, you would spend it with them. Then a friend, whom you haven’t seen since your 10th high school reunion, calls and asks you to go for coffee, what do you do? This would be a good time to exercise your ability and power to say no. If you can, schedule your coffee for another time during the week, and tell your friend that your children are your first priority.

The power of “no” comes from a self-reflection on what you think is important to you, what you value and believe. This will also help distinguish what types of demands are extraneous and don’t deserve immediate attention.

A great way to achieve a balance in your life is to sit down with your family, decide what is important to you as a family, and set priorities. A weekly meeting such as a family huddle is a practical way to establish these goals.


Attention! Sound off: paying attention to your child is important! The Complete Idiot's Guide to a Well-Behaved Child by Ericka Lutz

In her book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to a Well-Behaved Child, Erica Lutz pens 12 different self-discipline strategies, and the first one is an encouragement to pay attention to your child (via Family Education). This seems like obvious parenting, but its importance is often underscored in our busy world.

Parenting is the art of paying attention; you can learn nearly everything about your child – and parenting in general –by simply paying attention to him or her. Parents are constantly asked to multitask, yet children require close, frequent attention – not every moment of the day, but often. And, as your child grows, the amount of vis-à-vis time together decreases, but that’s when quality time is king.

This isn’t easy to do, however. Paying attention means more than being in the same room together – it’s more than being physically present. It must be about knowing how to communicate with your child. You have to learn how they talk and listen, and how you should respond. Here are some quick tips to maximize your quality time with your child, while maintaining your busy life (which is possible!):

• Use your multitasking skills. If you have to go to the post office anyway, stop by the park on your way home, and spend some time playing.
• Get organized. Your family should be your top priority, so focus on cultivating relationships with your children, rather than trying to get your “to-do” list done.
• Set up a family huddle, once per week “family meeting”.


These days, families don’t seem to have enough time to spend with each other. Me in a TreeThere are a growing number of families who have a dual income; however, that results in less time parents get to spend with their children. Families have to be innovative in creating quality time. While there are many ways to accomplish this, a fun and creative way to carve out time is to host a fundraiser.

There are countless fundraisers that you can try as a family, here a few ideas to get you started:

Amazing feats: hold a competition with your family to determine who has the craziest trick, like who can roll their tongue into a clover leaf or who is the most flexible.
Host an art gallery: if you have some artists in the family, you can create arts and crafts together. Donate the proceeds of any sales to an organization or cause of your choice.
Have a garage sale:  send some time as a family going through your stuff, and sell what you don’t need or want anymore. Proceeds from the garage sale can either go towards a night out with the family or to an organization or cause of your choice.

It doesn’t matter what the fundraiser is, as long as you are spending time together as a family.

A good place to start spending more time together is initiating a Family Huddle, a time set aside weekly to discuss life as a family.


Family…Working & Playing Together

For many of us, the New Year means setting some personal resolution to better ourselves in some way or another. When we think resolutions, we often think along the lines of losing weight, exercising more or getting out of debt, but have you ever considered making a resolution to improve the lives of your whole family?

Making a family resolution means you can focus on “what really matters”. Not only will you improve your family, but your children will learn a lot about self discipline and the value of setting a goal.

Here are some tips on how to help your kids benefit from making resolutions:

1. In order for you and your family to set goals it might be a good idea to review what your family does well together and what you struggle with. By sitting down and identifying your strengths and weaknesses it will become easier to establish where you want to go. has a 5 t0 10 minute assessment that will do this for you.


A year ago it became obvious that my children had become very attached to the laptop and their iPods and cell phones. They were spending nearly every free moment on-line, playing games, texting and facebooking, instead of reading and learning new things.

After attending a family literacy event at my child’s school, I was reminded of the importance of reading and learning with my children. I decided things needed to change. I knew it was going to be a battle but I decided to start slowly, initiating small changes.

family reading

Family Reading Time is Very Valuable

First we started going to the library and used book store often. Then we cut down on the time spent in front of a screen. We even added a games night. My husband and I also agreed that we wanted our children to become avid readers and learners, and that we needed to model our love of reading and learning to them as often as we could.