Miscellaneous, But Informative

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Summer – A Very Good Time To Gain School Perspective


I love the dynamics, diversity, growth potential, and awkwardness of middle school. In three short years, young humans transform from grade school students to high school students. This is no small feat!


It’s difficult, however, for middle school students to see the big picture of their schooling. Why is it structured the way it is? Why do teachers teach the way they do? What is the point of middle school? While in the midst of the day-to-day middle school routine, it is challenging to answer these questions AND have them heard. Summer is a great time for middle schoolers to gain middle school perspective!


Parents help students see the big picture of the day-to-day, hour-by-hour school experience. So can my book, Empowering Kids: School, written for middle schoolers, can help you help your student see the big picture of the entire middle school experience. 


I explain, for example, why teachers provide a whole year’s curriculum in 180 days instead of all of it at once. Each day is a step, a piece, or a part of the whole. Fortunately for kids, the curriculum is sectioned into small units of study.


In addition, teachers create these units to fit together with other subject’s units for what is called interdisciplinary or cross curriculum instruction. A writing teacher may create a unit about history coordinating with the history’s teacher’s unit about WWII. The science teacher may create a unit about diseases, germs, and the origin of antiseptics and disinfectants with an emphasis on war.


Side note: Joseph Lister in the 1800s was first to introduce antiseptic surgery. Now can you guess where the product name Listerine came from? These connections of history to present life help students learn. What other fun facts can your child discover this summer?


Chapter titles include:

Choose to value the educational offerings your teachers plan and provide you every day.

Choose to explore all the educational avenues available to you, and they are all available to you.

Choose to adopt that you can become anything you want because if you can dream it, it already exists.

Choose to know every single person on the planet learns in his or her own unique way.

Choose to marvel at the “incredibles” regarding your school.

Choose to participate in events, activities, and situations that are pro only.

Choose to view every grade and assessment as your opportunity.


Empowering Kids: School is a very valuable resource for your child. It is beneficial for you as well. Would your life benefit from a less whiny child during the school year? Would you benefit if your child could understand his or her teachers better? Would you benefit if your child understood what a lower-than-expected grade really is and took responsibility for it? Yes! Yes! Yes! Get Empower Kids: School for your child now and see the difference the information in the book can make in your household for the fall.

Prepping For The End


Got these: Senioritis? Summer-can’t-come-fast-enough-school blues? I-don’t-wanna-study-anymore comments?


We’ve all experienced it as a student. Nothing will go in the brain anymore. The desperately needed break. The will-this-ever-end facial expression.


How did you get past it? How will your child get past it? Here are some ideas:


  1. Talk about it. No demanding it. No yelling about it. Talk about it. See what’s behind the academic drag. Understanding it and expressing it’s normal will go a long way. Just allowing the venting can help reach the school year finish line. 
  2. Plan future events. And, make ’em good! I suspect this is how we all got to the finish line. Call this suggestion whatever you’d like, but bribery works. Plan future events such as vacation time, events such as a manicure or a new clothes shopping, or friend gatherings to motivate a job well done to the end. When inspiration isn’t holding out, try motivational events. 
  3. Provide planned and spontaneous breaks. Nothing speaks as loud as a plate of fresh, warm chocolate chip cookies to brighten the mood. How about a head, neck, hand, and/or back massage to go along with them? Do some form of physical exercise together. Get silly. Jump on the bed. Run around the house together yelling. Kiddos love parents who are willing to be spontaneous and fun especially when it’s done in sympathy.
  4. Give ’em a physical outlet. “Boxing” empty cardboard boxes or ripping apart an old blanket can serve as a means of letting off steam. What is around the house that you’ve been meaning to send to the dump? Throwing such items into a pick up or into the large trash containers at the dump can provide that physical release.
  5. Take quiet time/meditation moments. These don’t have to be time consuming. Instead, try five minutes of yoga stretches and/or yoga nasal breathing. Walking pets around the block will help, too.
  6. Break down the end of year testing schedule into smaller chunks. It can be overwhelming to look at the whole end of year process. Break it down into smaller, easier to digest and manage chunks. This is a good strategy for the entire year, but is especially effective during the last few weeks of school. “I only have to do my best on this one test right now. Then, I will focus on the next one tonight.”
  7. Encourage positive self-talk. No matter what a parent says, it is ultimately important that a child is saying the good stuff, too. Inquire what is spinning around in your child’s head. Is it saying, “I can do this?” Bringing into focus the necessity of positive self-communication will bring clarity to what is really your child’s mind-chatter. 


Understanding, sympathy, and allowing of certain behaviors like venting will enable your child to end the scholastic year well. You got this, parents!


Consider this book to help you to help your child with test-taking. It’s loaded with practical ideas. 



I Want A Tattoo!!!

Choosing to investigate curious events, comments, and requests before judgement will serve you well as in the case of hearing, “I want a tattoo!” or “I want to drop out of school!” from your child.


When establishing an empowered home culture and environment, you may hear your child say he or she wants to do things that you may or may not agree with. Empowered thinking allows for all options to be considered for their positive or negative effect. Instead of, “No! No way! Nope! Not under my roof!” an empowered parent will say, “Let’s investigate that idea.”


An empowered parent will be quite curious to know the energy behind such a statement as, “I want to get a tattoo,” from a child under the age of 18. What is driving the interest? Is it a temporary idea that will fade in a matter of a few minutes or days? Is it coming from peer pressure? Is it one tattoo or multiple ones? How big? What design? And, of course, where?


A delve into the history of tattoos would be beneficial as well. Tattoos have been used for positive reasons for ages. There are current royalty societies that still utilize tattoos as signs of dignity, honor, and respect. How is tattooing different than other forms of body mutilation such as haircutting, hair shaving, ear piercing, liposuction, and applying makeup? Every day, we manipulate our bodies just by breathing. Some manipulations are permanent like tattoos while others are not. And, some are required to live such as eating, drinking, and exercising.


There is a big difference between a response of, “Absolutely not!” and the investigation into the tattoo subject. This difference of response is the open door for any communication to occur now or in the future on any subject between you and your child. An empowered parent wants to know what is occurring in a child’s mind so that the empowered parent can have the opportunity to be a part of it. A response of, “Are you crazy? Just who do you think you are??” immediately shuts down all communication. It only takes one time, and the communication doors close with Viking-like locks and at least one guard on duty 24/7. Any reopening the doors will undoubtedly have a filter on for years.


Open communication begins with being open. Generational changes, attitudes, likes and dislikes, and opinions are guaranteed just as they were with every previous generation. Being willing to explore any subject of question or concern is enabling you to have the opportunity to have the conversation in the first place. An empowered parent will not only want this honor to be on the inside of a child’s thinking, but will relish and appreciate the opportunity.



Romantic Relationships In Middle School


Romantic relationships commonly become highlighted during the teenage years, and I can choose to embrace these as an important, essential, and intricate part of my child’s development. I can choose to be involved through discussions and sharing about the reasons for starting, having, and ending many romantic experiences now, if it is his or her wish, so that she will have plenty of relationship experiences before fully committing to another in adulthood.


Do you believe this statement? “School is the perfect garden to grow your child.” So much happens in the school garden that it can be overwhelming to a student and to parents, but even the weeds (unwanted people, events, and situations), storms (tidal waves of academic projects and work), soil erosion (thinning of friends), overcrowding (too many people in your child’s business), and connecting (friendship and romantic relationships) are all important and purposeful for the highest good of your son’s present moment and her future.


Romance and romantic relationships are vital pieces of the human experience education for it is a rare person who ignores or chooses to decline this essential part of life. School is the perfect place to play out, explore, and learn from the budding relationships that exist in this awkward developmental stage if it is your child’s interest to do so. Be ready, be accepting, be involved, be positive, be encouraging, and be proactive for this important developmental and parental opportunity.


Middle School romantic relationships generally are short-lived from a couple of hours to a couple of days to a couple of weeks. It is an abnormality that middle school students date for long periods of time such as a whole year or years. Middle school romance is a hodgepodge of short-lived attraction/withdrawal events with plenty of sideline curiosity seekers ready to spread the word in lightning middle school whisper fashion. Seemingly, any coupling of any type of students will send shockwaves throughout a school. No matter how hard one tries to keep things quiet, it is nearly impossible for it to remain so with the hundreds of middle school romance antennas all attuned to and on high alert for this kind of behavior. For this reason, parental guidance is the necessary grounding energy to shift the attention from the gossip to the relationship’s learning.


Romance in middle school is a powerful parental opportunity no matter if it is your child in the relationship or not. Much guiding can be done with others’ experiences. Open, non-judgmental discussion is essential. Establish a “all conversation topics are allowed” climate in your home now if not already for this is the beginning of all other conversations. This is the beginning of guiding your child toward healthy relationships in the future. This is your powerful, parental opportunity now.



You’re An Ugly Pig! Two Steps To Addressing Negative Comments



Reaching the place when you and your child understand, “You’re an ugly pig! And, you smell like one, too!” and what is really going on with such statements is a wonderful level of empowerment.


You will be amazed just how powerful this understanding is when your child interacts with the multiple people in his or her life with an already accepted perspective as well as an all-ready perspective on any negative statement. When a person has the previously prepared thought process ready-to-go when interacting with others, it is high level living, indeed, because social slandering, gossiping, and negative statements are not about you or your child, but about the other people’s relationship with soul-level happiness.


With the convenience of mass communication options also comes instant feedback, posting, and commenting on just about anything that happens globally. We now know within minutes or even seconds what is happening anywhere. It’s a blessing and a challenge. The audience for more interactions and reactions broadened globally with the internet. There are benefits and drawbacks. Since we are not returning to a pre-internet age, it is well worth the time and effort to delve into what is really happening behind negative comments and training oneself with an already accepted perspective as well as an all-ready perspective on any negative statement.


Removing the attention on the comment to drawing back the curtain to see the person who typed it, wrote it, or said it is a big empowerment step because it is a step that is challenging to do when being attacked or even just feeling attacked. It is possible to train you and your child to have a positive, loving automatic response.  An example of such a response that immediately says, “This is a person who doesn’t feel 100% about him or herself otherwise the comment would never have been made.” is positive and loving because now the next response is to send love to the person who typed it, wrote it, or said it.



Just by doing these two steps (realizing what is really happening and sending love), the attention is on healing and far away from feeling attacked. This is empowerment at its best. It is an intentional shift toward sidestepping the comment’s negative energy to helping the sender who obviously needs love sent to him or her.


The kindest and easiest way to train oneself for this automatic response is with real life situations that are happening to others. When you hear or read about someone attacking another, stop, realize what is happening, and send love to the sender. Then, when it happens to you, you’ll be ready to shoot back love.




Got Gossiping Issues? Free Gossiping Presentation!



Got gossiping issues? Who doesn’t? Gossiping is an ageless, societal issue that creates a range of far-reaching effect especially with school-aged children. This is the reason former middle school teacher, Lizabeth Jenkins-Dale, M.Ed., wrote and recently published, Gritty Gossipers And What To Do About Them.


This complete gossiping book for parents presents a step-by-step process that will allow both parent and child to enter the Land of Possibility with all gossiping situations. In addition, the book includes the psychology behind why people gossip, who gossipers are, how they think, why traditional punishment methods don’t work, benefits from being on the receiving end of gossiping, and how parents can bring their “turtling” or scared children to hope and then to empowerment.


Interested to know more? Register for this free talk about gossiping on February 13 at 1pm: https://demmelearning.com/event/empowering-students-to-understand-the-difference-between-conversation-and-gossip/.


Lizabeth Jenkins-Dale, M.Ed., aka The Middle School Mom Mentor and The Child Awakener, writes, speaks, and consults to help parents navigate the sometimes nail-biting pre-teen and teen years. After nearly 30 years in education including 10 years teaching in the gossiping-rich environment of middle schools, eight years being a school librarian, four years writing a weekly newspaper column called Purposeful Positive Parenting, conducting parent-child events, speaking at educational conferences, creating the Choose, Groove, Movedecision system for teens, and writing 15 books for both parents and teens focusing on a variety of topics such as gossiping, personal power, relationships, death, school, and happiness, her empowered parenting method for this age group is fueled by much experience as a parent and as an educator. Her approach begins with universal spiritual fundamentals of life and then spreads out to any subject highlighting her belief in the eternal goodness of life: “You are never stuck. Your child is never stuck. You always have options with everything.”


She offers opportunities for parents to hear her explain about an empowered parenting paradigm with such speaking titles as, “Grisly Gossipers and Bothersome Bullies And What To Do About Them,” “Who Is Your Child, Really?” “Tough Topics, Honest Responses,” “What Will Be Your Parental Legacy?” “The Problem Solver Solution That Works Every Time,” and “The Best Teen-Parent Communication For Modern Day Children.”


In addition to writing and speaking, Lizabeth has an online parental support group along with a parent rejuvenation program called The Multi-Dimensional Parenting Program, in which she explains the parenting perspectives and techniques she personally utilized and why they are successful for the older Earthlings to guide the younger Earthlings into empowered, positive, and cooperative living.


Additional information is located at www.middleschoolyearswithouttears.com.


Loving Weaknesses To Change Them



What is the easiest way to release from your child that which you do not desire to experience from or with your child: love or hate?


What is the easiest way to release that which is unwanted in your life: love or hate?


What is the easiest way to release anything unwanted: love or hate?


You already know the answer to all of these questions. Love, of course! Right now in this moment of reading this blog, there is probably very little resistance to accepting that love is the way to release that what is unwanted. But, in the heat of the moment or when first hearing how a student physically hurt your child, the focus on love is challenging. It is your power right now to begin the energetic upload, storage, and escrow-building of love for all past, present, and future situations, events, and encounters. Otherwise, we default into reactionary responses that help no one. 


This means sending love to any extra fat cells you may have accumulated, to anyone who has harmed you, and to any decision you made that resulted in less-than-favorable endings. Love is the only way to gain body balance, to release harmful people, and to let go of past decisions that resulted in adjustments or challenges in your life.


For example, I had to send love to the people I was previously married to and to myself for making those marital decisions in order for me to release them. If I had continued to hold the anger, I would have kept those two people attached to me in anger. They’d keep popping up in my life in a variety of ways…in angry form. Since I have released them by sending them love, I live a life free of negative entanglements with them. This freed me to be available to enjoying a wonderful marriage to my husband of 15 years! 


As with the situation of a child when he or she has done the unforgivable (whatever it might be is different for every parent), sending love is the only way to release the grip of what has been done. If anger dominates, then anger will dominate with no chance of forgiveness. If love is sent, then love will dominate the nearly certain forgiveness. 


This sending of love does not mean agreement of what was done. It means I’m sending you love anyway. It is sending love to heal the situation even if or because you can’t. See love as the ultimate negotiator or mediator of difficult situations. Let love do the healing. Let love be the communicator. Let love be the agent that awakens all hearts to what happened and the need to heal situations. 


Here’s a technique to be able to send love when the anger is very real and seemingly impenetrable. Get in a quiet, meditative state. Say or think, I want to connect with love. Allow love to come to you. “See” love enveloping you. Visualize it entering all your cells and forming a sphere around you to at least 5′.


Next, visualize floating your spirit out of your body about 20′ above you in a space that you would think Heaven would be like. In this safe, heavenly space, meet the person you have a challenge with for this person also is lifting his or her spirit up out of the body. If needed, you can invite Archangel Michael to be present as well as other angels.


Send love to this person. See love energy flowing from your sphere to the other person. See love coming from the angels surrounding both of you. See the love envelope the person going into each of this person’s cells. This is the only focus – love. Stay here as long as you’d like.


Slowly return to down into your body with love all around you. For at least a few minutes, notice all the love in you and around you. Say or think, I keep this love connection going to heal this situation. 


Open your eyes. Know that you can return to the heavenly spot again if needed. This technique allows love the opportunity to heal the situation or challenge in a safe place. Repeat as necessary.


What is happening in your life that could use some love?

You can send love to yourself, a person, an object, or place. Because we are all divinely connected, this is a very real activity with very real results.



The Spiritual Goodness of Winter


Dormant trees. Flowerless gardens. Gray days. Colder weather. Wintertime can be tough. For some people, it is just a period of time to “get through” to reach the other seasons. But, is there a purpose for winter? What messages can it hold for all of us? I do believe all of Life is for us so there must be some reason the winter season exists…purposeful, positive reasons.


Time to reset ourselves. Nature is doing it, and perhaps, it is for us to do, too. The trees and plants are not using as much energy these days. Dormancy has its benefits. Winter can be a very relaxing season. Sitting by the fire. Enjoying hot meals such as soup. Why? For what purpose? Time to reset. January is the top of the new year. What do you want to achieve this year? What does 2024 hold for you? What are your goals? In this relaxed state of dormant winter, ponder the next 11 months. How do you want to spend them? What do you want to keep from 2023? What is new that you want to include in the new year. Just as the trees and plants are relaxing, yet preparing for spring, you can, too, relax as you make your 2024 plans. 


Body, spirit, and mind rest. Shorter days provide the perfect excuse for rejuvenation both physically and mentally. Spiritually, it is a simpler time to connect with one’s divinity. The calming effect of gray skies with barren trees can allow us to go within during this time for where are the green leaves right now? They’re inside awaiting the perfect conditions to appear. Where are the flower buds? They are within the plant. If we mimic this behavior, there just might be blessings awaiting us.


Perspective. Less activity now provides the contrast of the spring, summer, and fall month in which activity is usually at an all time high. How would we know busy if we don’t know relaxation? How do we know our quiet selves unless we experience our busy selves? Both are needed for a life well lived. To know one is to know the other. Allowing this slower time of the year to provide the activity contrast provides the perspective of the need for activity and inactivity for a balanced life.


Too often, it is too easy to view a cold, gray day as depressing. When looking deeper, we find peace, calm, preparation, balance, and relaxation in this season. As a parent and author, I say this statement often, “Perspective is everything.” In the case of wintertime, perspective is, indeed, an ally. Enjoy this time with deep gratitude!


Steps To Positively Shifting From 2023 to 2024!

I’ve been through enough New Years transitions now to have a new perspective on them: no judgment. Just observation. 


What I mean by this is to keep it real, personal, and loving. Judgment doesn’t work well for any subject for any of the 365 days of the year so why bring judgment into this topic now? Observing what was accomplished in 2023 to develop new goals for 2024 sounds real, personal, and loving. It’s an exciting time of the year so let’s utilize that excitement to move forward.


List all of your achievements of 2023. You’ll probably be surprised by what pops up. I was doing this with my husband earlier today, and he reminded me of many items on our list. It was thrilling to relive what we were able to to achieve together!


In that excitement, step up to the new year with, “What’s next?” energy. Create a new list for 2024. Don’t hold back. Dream. sense the ideas bubble up from within you.


By the way, in basic numerology, the year 2023 reduces to the number seven. Do your own search for the positive, spiritual meaning of our dear number seven. It may bring perspective to your 2023 year. 


I know…not everything was peaches and cream in 2023. As with anything, you always have options.


  1. List the unwanted events and ceremonially burn the list while stating, “You are complete.”
  2. List the unwanted events and while looking at them state, “I am bigger than this. I am more than this.”
  3. List the unwanted events and have a good laugh because infusing laughter into each event lessens the intensity of them.



Don’t like lists? Don’t want to even think about what happened in 2023? You have options!

  1. Stand tall outside with hands on hips and state, “All negativity from 2023 and previous years is now complete and will not be brought forth into 2024.”
  2. Look in the mirror and state, “I only bring with me that what I need to grow in 2024 to my fullest potential.”
  3. Write in your personal journal as often as it feels good: 2024 is my year of complete freedom. 2024 is my year of complete potential realized.


In basic numerology, the year 2024 reduces to the number eight. Do some research for the spiritual meaning of our fantastic number eight. It’s going to be an exciting year, for sure!



Holiday Hustle: Forest For The Trees




It’s the most wonderful time of the year! The song definitely highlights the good parts of the holiday hustle, for sure. It IS a grand time, but much to do, yes? Can you see the big holiday picture while wrapping, gifting, singing, eating, receiving, and traveling? Can you see the holiday forest for the trees?


I recently traveled across the United States. I drove by myself for five days from Washington State to North Carolina. It was a huge personal achievement as I’ve done it several times with a person in the car, but never by myself. Needless to say, it was a different experience being the sole caretaker of myself. I loved it, actually. 


While traveling for up to 14 hours a day with just me doing all the talking, I got the opportunity to think and think and think. One of those thoughts came from viewing my dirty windshield. (I’m making a point. I promise. It’ll all tie in together with the holidays and trees!) There was bird poop and smooshed bug guts on my windshield. But, I could still see. It depended on what I was looking at. It depended on my focused line of sight. It depended on what I wanted to see. 


If I was super bored, I looked at the splattered bird poop. Mostly white. Some specks of I don’t know what in the middle. Sorta round, but part of it dripped down. 


Then, the insect inners caught my attention. Greenish. Irregular spots that always seemed to go up the windshield. Some big spots. Some tiny.


The thought occurred to me: What I am choosing to see is what I am seeing. I have choice, and it’s like life! We can get distracted with the poop and guts of life right in front of us, or we can choose to see the big picture. I could easily shift my vision from the road to the windshield and back.


With all the items on our lists that need to be done at this time of the year and at other times, can we shift our vision easily from the big picture to the nitty-gritties of life? After all, bird poop and bug guts are quite interesting to ponder, indeed, especially when traveling several thousands of miles solo. The analyzing took me miles to do, fortunately! 


Enjoy your holiday festivities right now in this moment. In a week, I’ll post a blog about ending 2023 and beginning 2024 ceremoniously so the two years don’t blur into each other. What needs to be left behind and stay put in 2023? Oh I love perspective. It truly is everything. 



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