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Brand New Tools for Your Toolkit

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Finally, after the coldest winter in years, spring is in the air! The warmer temperatures and sunshine are a balm to the spirit. While your kids are outside playing in the fresh air, it’s a perfect time to enjoy the quiet. Pour a cup of tea, put the laundry aside, and carve out some “me” time. I’ve spent the winter writing a new e-book that I think you’ll enjoy. I’ve always thought parenting books should be fun to read as well as educational so I’ve come up with something that’s aimed to entertain you as well as inspire.

The idea for this book came from a parenting workshop I held years ago. I was sharing a story about how hard it was to get my daughter ready for school in the morning. I joked that what I really needed was some invisible tape over my mouth to stop all the micromanaging. Everyone got it. This got us thinking about other magical tools that would be useful. We let our imaginations run wild and came up with all kinds of gadgets until someone suggested we invent a pill to make kids obey. We laughed . . . but we knew we had gone too far with that one.

I went home and thought about this idea some more. I realized that when it comes to dealing with misbehaviour, it’s almost always something we’re doing that  needs a little fine tuning—whether we need to be more firm, show more confidence, or be less ready to jump in and take care of everything for our child. Real solutions are found when we tweak our approach until it’s just right. I ran with the “tool” idea and was able to come up with ten that I think you’ll find perfect for your own toolkit. The problems I’ve selected are the most common ones that I’m asked about. Each chapter is densely packed with proven steps to improve cooperation and the reasons why these steps are so essential. 

Spring is a Time for Renewal . . . and Getting Things in Order

One of my tools, The Toy Vacuum is the perfect accessory for your spring cleaning. As you open the windows of your home and pack away winter boots, sleds and ice skates, and bring out the basketballs and bicycles, it’s a great time to take stock of how your playroom looks from your child’s perspective. How many toys does he have to play with? Are the toys interesting for him or do they sit in the bottom of the toy chest untouched? Are there so many things to play with that he feels overwhelmed when he’s faced with the task of cleaning up? What changes should be made to make it easier for him to manage it on his own? 

Organization is just the first step in helping children learn to be responsible for their belongings. This chapter is about why order matters – and how it teaches kids to respect their things, their home, and you. To me, this is the nuts and bolts of parenting – how we deal with the day to day, ordinary challenges and how these things help kids learn about responsibility, respect, and consideration. I’ll take you through the whole process, starting with a frustrated parent, two kids who leave a trail of toys in their wake, and the steps needed to put things in order and restore harmony. 

What’s in the New Toolkit?

The following is a list of the ten tools you’ll find in the book, and the problems they solve. 

Invisible Tape – Morning dawdling

Kitchen-Chair Seat Belt (we wear it, not them) – The fussy eater

The Toy Vacuum – Messy rooms

The Backbone Brace – The power child

Perfecting Glasses – The discouraged child

Phone Muffs – Attention hogs

The Consistency Checker – Ignoring rules and routines

The Heart Cooler – A bad case of self-pity

The Inflatable Room – Squabbling Siblings

Bedroom Door Chime – Won’t sleep alone

Just click here and go to my website for a sneak peek of the chapter, The Toy Vacuum.
The Parenting Toolkit is now available as an ebook on Kobo at


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Guest Friday, 08 December 2023

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