whtXWmDGTTuddi1ncK5v_IMG_0097Let’s face it, the most powerful way we teach our children is simply by living our everyday lives.  They see what we do day in and day out.  When I look back on my own childhood, I remember the rhythm of things, the small activities my mother did all the time.  I remember the habits.

And now that I’m a mom myself, this drives me nuts!  Because of course, our children pick up our good AND our bad habits.  Boo…

So when you find me harping on the importance of creating good habits, this is not just for your own good but for the good of your family.  That’s why I wanted to do a giveaway today of the book How Habits Influence Children, and Parents too! by Anna Andersen.  This little book is great for explaining why habits are so important for children and how you can create habits (fun ones!) and be a better parent to help your children…. and guess what… it’ll help you too!

She talks about the importance of routines and of transitions from one activity to the next.  There are some suggestions she makes that don’t fit into what our family does, and that’s fine.  I like that her ideas are flexible.  They theory is sound and so you just have to apply your own family routines to her ideas to help form habits that work for your family!

The only thing that didn’t jive with me is that she isn’t a big fan of timeouts and I’m definitely a big fan of timeouts.  But let’s not get hung up on small details.  I have two quiet girls who respond really well to standing by the front door to calm down for two minutes.  I totally get that this doesn’t apply to all families!

The idea I liked the most was the idea of having a YES day where your child gets to decide what you do!  She lays down some basic (and fair) ground rules but as long as the idea fits those constraints, the answer is yes.  I’m terrified (and excited) to try this out!

This book is inexpensive and short.  I read a Kindle version but I’m going to give away a physical copy today on my blog.  So leave a comment about one aspect of your life with kids you’d like to improve and I’ll choose someone on Thursday to receive a copy of this book!

Or if you can’t wait, go get a copy here: How Habits Influence Children, and Parents too! by Anna Andersen