Five by the Sea


Follow up! An Interview with the Author of MOMOLOGY- Shelly Radic
June 11, 2010, 6:21 am
Filed under: Interviews | Tags: , , , , ,

I was given the opportunity to interview the author of Momology, Shelly Radic, and jumped at the chance. I am always intrigued by interviewing authors as so much goes into the thought process of putting together and writing a book, editing the book, and then finally publishing it. There is always a “story behind the story” that fascinates me. Shelly was gracious in answering my questions about how Momology came about, and what she hopes to express to Mom’s through her book about the most important job in the world- raising our children.

Here is the interview, thanks Shelly! 

Can you share a little bit about the research that went into Momology?

The research being done on parenting and families is extensive. To shape the content and better understand what moms are most concerned about, we spent several months reviewing research done by agencies and organizations such as the YMCA, Search Institute and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as well as reviewing the thinking of multiple parenting experts, current university and government research as well as mom websites and blogs. About 1,800 moms of preschoolers also responded to surveys specifically for Momology. Momology is also based on what MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers, Intl.) has learned in over 35 years of working with moms.

From your research and extensive surveying, you found that there were four essential elements that result in the best parenting. Can you share what those essentials are?

After considering the research, we identified four areas that most contribute to shaping great kids which are: Core, Finesse, Circle and Grandscape. They’re quite interconnected, one supporting another to shape healthy, resilient moms and kids.

Starting within herself, there is a mom’s CORE. To be healthy and resilient, a mom needs to know and grow who she is, her personality, experiences, passions and potential.

From her CORE, a mom develops FINESSE, the ability to successfully interact with her kids, loving them, caring for them, disciplining them, and shaping who they are becoming.

Every mom needs a CIRCLE of relationships to support her and her kids. Having people we can count on, the service providers, neighbors, friends, extended family, and most importantly, if a mom is married, her husband. If she’s not married, having a parenting partner makes a huge difference.

A relationship with God, engaging in his GRANDSCAPE or plan for life gives a mom purpose and hope both now and in the future. That relationship positively impacts her CORE.

You can see how the four areas are both critical for success and interconnected with each other.

How can a mom handle the effects of culture on her children?

In the eight years between my oldest and youngest children, my experience is that this has become increasingly challenging but I still think the same three principles that can guide moms.

  • Immerse in excellence. Engage kids in the best culture has to offer. Share opportunities for them to participate in and with the best music, art, literature, science and media your community has to offer. Surround your kids with a circle of supportive, positive people of a variety of ages and ethnicities. Include kids in doing good- host an International student, pack groceries in reusable bags, grow vegetables and share some with a soup kitchen.
  • Instill discernment. Identify negative influences and discuss why they are harmful. For instance, if litter is a problem in the neighborhood, talk about how this can hurt birds and our water supply. Teach evaluative skills. Is this real or pretend? Safe or scary? Practice safe responses such as how to say no, move away, tune out or seek assistance.
  • Be aware. Keep up with new technology, media and cultural trends and the impact they have on children. This is one place a mom group can be really helpful.

What little tidbit or nugget of information can you give to my readers that you have learned from writing this book?

I need to share two!

1- As I wrote Momology, I became more convinced than ever that mothering should be done in community so invest each week in time with at least one supportive mom friend. Meet at the park or at your house to talk while the kids play. Chat on the phone. Do some errands or make a meal together.

2- I am specifically designed to match what my child needs in a mom and so are you.  I had some kid challenges while I was writing Momology and spent some time beating myself up for who I wasn’t. It’s easy to go there as a mom. While every mom screws up at times, our “who” is no mistake. Be confident in the mom God created you to be and use all that he’s given you to be the best mom possible.

Advertisements


Book Review: MOMOLOGY- A Mom’s Guide to Shaping Great Kids
June 10, 2010, 6:20 am
Filed under: Book Reviews | Tags: , , , , , ,

MOMOLOGY- A Mom’s Guide to Shaping Great Kids

By Shelly Radic

My Review:

The road to Motherhood is filled with tons of information on how to be the best/most effective/most loving, etc. (the list goes on and on….) Mom that we can all be. There are many books out on the market through MOPS and publishers of all sorts that give advice on how to raise our kids. It’s hard to be different, hard to carve a niche for yourself in this crowded space of too much information and too little time. Author Shelly Radic fills the space nicely, Momology is a creatively set-up little book that is a combination of facts about Motherhood and helpful hints on how we can all get through this journey with our feet on the ground.

I really enjoyed the ease of reading this book, put together in short little snippets that even busy Mom’s can find time for. As one of our MOPS speakers once said- if you have just five minutes of time you can spend that five minutes doing something to benefit your family. Spending just a little time reading this book will encourage and enlighten every Mom in many different seasons of motherhood. Shelly shares what she believes to be the four core elements of successful mothering and divides the book accordingly into four parts: core, finesse, circle, and grandscape.

One theme in the book that I particularly liked is that while God created each of our children as unique individuals; he also created each mom to be uniquely equipped to raise the children he blessed us with. I think this is a core belief of MOPS, and it really came through in this book and gave me the encouragement that I need to push on despite the sometimes bumpy road of Motherhood.

Each chapter, besides having great content, contains a field study (a different mom’s learning situation), practicum (questions, journaling topics or resources on how to incorporate truth into your mothering) and a quick review. The unusual format of using“post-it” notes, paper clips, and memo pages made the book a little more creative than most, and also adapted to her idea of getting concepts out in brief snippets.

Shelly did a great job on the content of the book, it is kind of like a report on Mom’s. Detailed statistics and website links provide much information for a busy Mom that wants to find out more. Analytical personalities will enjoy this, because the book is filled with more than enough facts and trends. Over 1800 moms participated in the research for the book, so there is a great deal of data to read! If you take it in small baby steps, it may be easier to read.

Many will like the interactive style of the book, which directs you to several websites for more information. One website is actually based on the book, and when you visit www.Mom-ology.org you’re able to give more feedback to the researchers and author.

If you are a new Mom participating in MOPS International, then this is the theme book of the year and you’ll probably have many MOPS activities based upon the book. So the book is a must read for MOPS members!

Available June 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. The only compensation I received for reviewing this book was a complimentary copy, courtesy of Revell. 



Bringing the Outside World In
October 5, 2009, 11:53 pm
Filed under: Writing | Tags: , , , , , , ,

I feel as though I am trapped by the world at large, or rather my own small world in which I spend my days. As the mother of three young children I often feel as though the events of the outside world, outside of my bubble of everyday reality, go on without me. Although most of the time I could care less about the latest celebrity media circus or the rise and fall of the price of gas or the stock market. I should care, at least I tell myself that I should care, because that is what all the “grown-ups” (that would be my retired parents and in-laws, friends without kids, etc.) are talking about, complaining about, yelling about; but I really don’t care. Now that just makes me look like a horrible person that doesn’t care about the world, that is not the case, what I care about it is how the world affects my family and how we can teach our children about the world in a way that makes it real, see it through their eyes and bring it to a level that we can all learn from.

I don’t feel an overwhelming need to travel beyond the borders of my little world so much any more, not like I did when I was younger. But with that sense of being home and enjoying my community I do feel as though it is my job to find a way to create a space in my reality that brings the wonders of that vast outer world into my own- for me and also my children.

How to bring the world into my little bubble in such a way that my children realize that not all children in the world can make a trip to Target and choose from a wide array of shiny new toys, that not all children have parents that are able to work and bring food and clothing to them. How do I show my kids how incredibly lucky we are? How can I do it in such a way that doesn’t scare them, yet impacts them? This is my conundrum of late- how to teach empathy and gratefulness in a world that is anything but.