Monday, October 10, 2016

Raising a Young Modern-Day Princess by Doreen Hannah and Karen Whiting (book review)

We have called our daughter "Princess" almost since the day she was born. I even love the idea of her sharing names with a real princess (although that is not how she got her name). 

I have been quite disappointed in many princess books that I have read with my Princess. They make princesses seem air-headed and prissy. I believe that a princess should be graceful and kind and generous and loving and caring and tender. I love the idea behind "Raising a Young Modern-Day Princess" by Doreen Hannah and Karen Whiting which combines Scripture to teach the Fruits of the Spirit with the idea that all girls are Princesses (as they are daughters of the One True King, God).

image via Amazon.com
One idea from the book is a marble jar to keep track of when you see your child showing a Fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, or self-control). My family has started to do this very thing with a sticker chart rather than a marble jar. When we see a family member (parents and kids) showing a Fruit, then they get a sticker. When the kids get 50 stickers, they get a Daddy date. Not sure what us parents get when we get 50 stickers. I love that idea to affirm and our children that they are growing in the Spirit. 

There is a whole list of acts of kindness to help grow the fruit of kindness: pick up litter, when you meet someone learn his or her name, read to a younger child, clean out the car, hold the door open. I love that they are not just huge things but small acts of kindness. There's an idea for kindness bookmarks, too, which has made me think to make some for my boys. 

The chapters have ideas for mothers for activities to do with their children and then there are daughter and dad activities, too. I believe that it is always important to keep a dad on the inside when you are teaching character and virtues. He speaks volume to a young girl on how to act and expect to be treated.

The chapter that resonated with me my most was the self-control chapter. One of my children and myself struggle with this and so I noticed the heading, "how to be a mom who teaches by showing." The mom said she was "grumpy, short tempered," and wanting her husband home as soon as possible (sounds familiar). She found herself snapping at her daughter, and then crying in tears guilt. A friend helped her by telling her she needed to ask for help - from God and from friends -without shame or pride. I have learned about my need to ask for help and not worry about whether I'm burdening someone (they can always say no) or a bother. If I need help, I need to ask, just as I would help if a friend needed me.

I believe this book will help me as I do raise my daughter, but the one thing I dislike about this book is that I'm not sure of the age group it is intended for. It seems more geared toward children older than my daughter (15 months). I am guessing this would be more fruitful no earlier than three years old. But there is a companion for older girls, tweens and teens, called "Raising a Modern-Day Princess." I am planning to use some of the activities for all of my children - males and females. Just don't tell my boys. ;)

Disclaimer: I received this book in order to write an honest review. Others' opinions may differ from mine.

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