Parenting can become a whole new ball game when you are suddenly parenting on your own. When children know what you will and won’t tolerate, a lot of conflict can be avoided.

I want to thank Nicholeen Peck of “Parenting A House United – Teaching Self Government” for much of what I have learned and will share that is helping me as I parent and interact with my grandchildren. I highly recommend you check out her website, The principles she teaches have improved my parenting and helped me feel more confident, and our home is more peaceful and orderly because of them.

Last post, I invited parents to list those behaviors that really bother them, order the behaviors in order of those that are MOST bothersome, and then evaluate each item on the list and WHY they feel strongly about that behavior.

When I first did this, I realized that there were certain underlying virtues that I wanted my children to learn and live by. That helped me see why I felt so strongly about certain behaviors. I wanted them to be honest; I wanted them to be kind; I wanted them to be hard-working and God-fearing.

Look at your list. From what you’ve written, can you tell what virtues you are hoping to instill in your children?

It’s a powerful practice to do this frequently, and one that can make a world of difference in our children, and our homes.