Hudson Valley Parent

HVP September 2019

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Page 16 of 31 n Hudson Valley Parent 17 followed her dream to have her own shop. "My mother is my hero, she was so determined to make something of herself," Ries says. 8. Take the time to let off a little steam Ries says that her mother was 16 when she married her husband who was 20. At 18, she had Jean, her first child. "In some ways, my mother was old beyond her years, but she and her husband were still young and liked to let off a little steam now and then," says Ries. "They liked to have fun and to go nightclubbing. I don't know if young people still do that, but it was one of the secret ingredients to my parents' success." 9. Foster responsibility in children With her mother working, Ries had many responsibilities growing up. For instance, the house needed to be cleaned every Saturday before she went out with her friends. But Ries says that work didn't hurt at all. She learned responsibility and remembers her upbringing fondly. 10. Instill a love for nature Sabina Toomey of Forestburgh is a parent to three grown children and a grandparent to seven grandchildren. She says an important part of raising her children was making them appreciate nature. "I always try to give them a sense of awareness about their natural surroundings. If we're out for a drive, we'll stop and look at the clouds and the sky," Toomey says. 11. Share stories The best way to connect with family is through stories. Toomey says that when her grandkids come to stay, she has many techniques for connecting with them. "I have them write stories about their day and what they experienced." Toomey has also found that her grandchildren enjoy hearing stories about their parents when they were their age. 12. Keep children busy Dolores Voorhees of Dover Plains has four grown sons, fifteen grandchildren, six great grandchildren and has adopted her niece's three children. "One thing I've learned is to keep them busy. If they have too much time, that means trouble." 13. Motivate with money Over the years, Voorhees has learned that a little monetary incentive can work to get results. "A few dollars for a good report card or for practicing their instrument can work wonders as a motivational tool." 14. Teach important life skills Voorhees comes from a big family and her mother always emphasized that children need to have projects that will teach them skills. "Help your kids set goals and get involved in activities they can make use of later in life, like playing an instrument, learning a second language, sewing or computers." 15. Laughter is the best medicine When a youngster is stressed or getting worked up about a situation, Voorhees says, "Help them laugh at themselves or see the humor in the situation. When they get in to an 'everything is awful' frame of mind, this can be the only thing that helps." Olivia L. Lawrence is an editor with a news organization. She likes to spend her free time outside gardening or otherwise enjoying nature.

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