Do your kids have good manners?


Today, The Morning Thing focused on manners. Marcy Rinehart and Todd McKinley shared tips for taking young children out to eat this holiday weekend.
Click HERE to see 10 ways to help your next restaurant visit go a little smoother.

We also shared a guide from
Click HERE to see this age guide that has everything you need to know to raise polite, well-mannered children, no matter their age or stage.

This weekend is a perfect time to put some of these tips into practice. It’s a holiday weekend. Take the family out for dinner and practice good manners.

It is National Parents as Teachers Day. Here are some values that parents should teach children before the age of 5.



(from National Parents as Teachers Day is observed annually on November 8. On this day Parents as Teachers Organization offers educational services to parents across the country.  These affiliates give all parents of young children support, and it also provides information so all children learn, grow and develop to realize their full potential.

The concept for Parents as Teachers developed in the 1970s when Missouri educators noted that children were beginning kindergarten with varying levels of school readiness. Research showed that greater parent involvement is a critical link in the child’s development of learning skills, including reading and writing.

We found an insightful article from 
They highlight 5 values that parents should teach their children before the age of 5 (before they head to school).
Click HERE to see the full article.

Value #1: Honesty

Help Kids Find a Way To Tell the Truth
The best way to encourage truthfulness in your child is to be a truthful person yourself.

Value #2: Justice

Insist That Children Make Amends

Value #3: Determination

Encourage Them To Take on a Challenge

Value #4: Consideration

Teach Them To Think about Others’ Feelings

Value #5: Love

Be Generous with Your Affection


How to Help Our Kids Overcome Fear


If you saw the news over the weekend, you know that we have another tragic story to add to our country’s history. A Texas church shooting leaves 26 dead, including 8 members of one family. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called the slaughter “the largest mass shooting” in the state’s history and ordered flags to fly at half-staff across the state Monday.

How do we deal with all the emotions that flood our hearts and minds when we see these tragic stories? How do we help our children handle their fears?
We found some wonderful advice from (picture and content from

Author Jennifer Price shares 5 ways we can help our kids overcome fear and walk as the Bible teaches us to walk. Click HERE for the full article.

  1. Create a safe place for conversation.

    Isn’t it the worst thing to experience fear but keep it inside? Fear is crippling already, but not talking about it is even more damaging. Create a place for your kids to talk about what that makes them scared. Many times just speaking it out dispels the fear.

  2. Admit that you yourself experience fear sometimes.

    Sometimes kids are reluctant to admit what makes them feel scared. There’s nothing that breaks down walls better than humility. There’s comfort in knowing other people, especially their mom or dad, also experience fear. Even though they may not understand this truth at a young age, let them know that confidence will grow when they talk about the things that frighten them.

  3. Teach your kids to make prayer the go-to when they are feeling fearful.

    Nothing brings a sense of peace and calm like talking to Jesus.

    Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. — Philippians 4:6

  1. Read Scriptures together that talk about fear.

    God’s word is truth, and the truth is that God doesn’t want us to carry fear in our heart. He is longing for us to bring those fears to Him.

    For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” — Romans 8:15.

    When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. — Psalm 56:3

    But now thus says the Lord, He who created you, O Jacob, He who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you. For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. I give Egypt as your ransom, Cush and Seba in exchange for you. — Isaiah 43:1-3

    For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. — 2 Timothy 1:7

    I sought the Lord, and He answered me and delivered me from all my fears. — Psalm 34:4

  1. Read books and Bible stories about those who have dealt with fear.

    My favorite story is when Joshua took the lead after Moses. I can’t imagine how he felt with those big shoes he had to fill! God tells him right away in Joshua 1:9Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.

    Another great book is I’m Not A Scaredy Cat by Max Lucado. The humor combined with the important message that God is always near is perfect for helping the younger audience remember to trust in God completely with their fears.

Fear is real and natural. Thankfully, God has given us lots of reassurance through His word that it’s not something we need to carry on our own. Teaching our kids this at a young age will help them have the tools to overcome fear in a healthy way as they get older.


Parenting – a tough, but rewarding job.

Dad and kid

Today, The Morning Thing focused on parenting. We shared some incredible insight from 2 great resources.

We shared 8 truths that every parent should know from Mark W. Merrill. Mark is the president of All Pro Dad and Family First , a national non-profit organization.
Click HERE to read the entire article from

1. Parenting requires loving your child for who they are, not for what they do.

2. Parenting requires patience.

3. Parenting is “heart work.”

4. Parenting is always doing what’s best for your child.

5. Parenting requires always speaking the truth to your child and into your child’s life.

6. Parenting is about failing, forgiving, and asking for forgiveness.

7. Parenting requires prayer.

8. Parenting is putting your relationship with God, and then your spouse, ahead of your relationship with your child.

We also shared 8 warning signs that your child is headed for trouble.
Click HERE to read the entire article from

Here are some of the common signs of a child who’s heading the wrong direction. It is important to recognize these and take the appropriate steps to guide your child back down a positive path.

1. Mood Swings

2. Withdrawal

3. Hiding Things

4. Dropping Grades

5. Sudden Change of Friends

6. Fluctuating Weight

7. Personality Changes

8. Changing The Way They Dress

(Picture from

The Morning Thing Fave 5 celebrates Sons and Daughters Day!

It’s Sons and Daughters Day! This is a day that parents can honor their children.

Today for The Morning Thing Fave 5, we had the Big Blue members ask their parent/s to share why them love them.

James Hubbard

James Hubbard


Lilly Buckley


Eddie Dilts


Jenna Potts


Rachel Rinehart

Building stronger relationships between parents and kids – The Morning Thing 4/18/17


Today, The Morning Thing focused on the relationship between parents and kids.

We shared some wonderful insight from Focus on the Family on how to build healthy relationships with your kids. Click HERE to read the full article.

Pray, pray, pray – don’t make this a last resort, make it part of your routine.
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NIV)
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances;for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Get into their space.
From infancy through about age 8, kids spend a lot of time on the floor. We should be down there, too — playing games, pretending with dolls, building block forts. Fight the feeling that you’re acting stupid; crawl through those embarrassed feelings and meet your kids.

Keep it real.
As hard as it may be, recounting our missteps can help kids who are 12 and older learn from our errors. They also get to see we’re not perfect.

Enjoy family time.
A simple way to connect with your kids is eating together as a family. This is easy to do when they’re little, but as kids get older, sports and other activities compete with the family mealtime.

Do projects together.
You’ll need to think and pray about the right level of involvement for your children based on their ages and experience. Count on this: The project may take longer, and your children will not do things like you would. If you can accept these facts, you’ll discover an endearing, enjoyable time.

Be silly.
This isn’t just for small ones. Older kids like it when you act silly, too — even though you might hear, “Oh, Dad, stop it” or “This person is not my mother.”

Embarrassing children in public is not a good idea, but having fun in private keeps things light and makes you approachable. So go ahead, do the goofy dance, make funny faces, sing silly songs, talk for the dog.
We also shared 20 ingenious tricks on how to get your kids to open up about their school day. Click HERE to read the full article from

Here are 10 of the tricks:

  1. Tell me about today’s “thorn” (a not-great thing that happened) at school.
  2. Now tell me about the “rose” (the best thing that happened).
  3. Did anyone say something funny or tell a good joke?
  4. Was it a “play with your friends at recess” kind of day? Or a “chill by yourself on the swings” kind of day?
  5. You had art/music/computer today, right? What kind of project are you working on?
  6. Tell me something that you learned today that I don’t know. If you can stump me, I’ll do a goofy dance/read to you for an extra 10 minutes/watch an entire YouTube video with you (insert whatever works here).
  7. Tell me something kind that you did for someone today.
  8. Tell me something kind that someone else did for you.
  9. How many stars would you give the cafeteria food today?
  10. Did your friends get along really well today?

(Picture from Focus on the Family and Ingram Publishing/Thinkstock)

Spark your creativity! The Morning Thing 9/21/16


Do you feel creative? Need a spark?
The Morning Thing shared 17 easy ways to get your creative juices flowing from

Some of our favorite ideas include:

* Read a Book

The more people read, the more their minds open up. This allows mind to think of new ideas which result in becoming more creative. All it takes is reading about a half hour before going to bed at night.

* Make a Note of Ideas

As soon as an idea forms, write it down. After it’s written down, the brain is free to form another idea.

* Listen to Sound

There are sound frequencies that have a positive result in increasing the creativity and performance of the brain. When these sounds are listened to, a person can see the positive effect it has had on their creativity and thinking.

* Anti-Oxidants

Eating blueberries will provide the richest of anti-oxidants, and a few of them should be eaten every day. They are great for raising the thinking ability of the brain.

* Be A Flexible Thinker

Flexible thinkers have the capacity to control and direct their thoughts. This way of thinking allows them to adjust to a novel way of thinking. They can also apply this to what they perceive and can focus on the situation at hand.

Our brain has the ability to rewire itself and can physically adjust to our new ways of thinking. A flexible mindset shoves away all patterns of limiting thought, and goes to a serene place of possibilities and openness to creativity.

Click HERE to see the entire article from Graphic Designer, Jacob Cass.

We also shared 7 ways to foster creativity in your kids. Click HERE to see some wonderful ideas from Christine Carter, Ph.D, a sociologist and happiness expert at UC Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center.

Be Smart – with Money and Snacking, The Morning Thing 8/31/16


Today, shared some tips on being smart – smart with money and smart with snacking.

Click HERE for 5 tips for raising money smart kids from
1. Lead by example
2. Teach saving, giving and spending wisely
3. Take it to the bank
4. Test the stock market waters
5. Let them make mistakes

Today is Trail Mix Day – we shared some make-at-home yummy recipes. Click HERE to see how to make Mountain Trail Mix, Healthy Sweet & Salty Trail Mix, Crunch-Crunch-Crunch Mix and Pumpkin Seed Dried Cherry Trail Mix.

We also found some wonderful healthy and portable high protein Snack Ideas. Click HERE for 27 delicious, healthy, and easy options that have even more protein than an egg (one large contains about 6 grams). Whether you’re fueling up before hitting the gym or taking a midday snack break to avoid the 3 p.m. lull, high-protein snacks are the tastiest way to keep on going. These snacks that pack in plenty of protein along with other nutrients are the perfect way to fill up, and give us longer-lasting energy than carb-heavy options.


Burger Day and Family Dinners – let’s CELEBRATE! The Morning Thing 8/25/16

perfect burger

On Thursday’s show we celebrated Burger Day! Yes! If you love a good burger, make sure that you check out these 36 yummy burger recipes.
Click HERE to see 36 Killer Burger Recipes. If YOU are the chef, grab your “Kiss-the-BBQ-Chef” apron. 🙂

We also shared 7 reasons why eating family dinners together is very important.
Anne K. Fishel, Ph.D. shared these thoughts on
Over the last 20 years, dozens of studies have confirmed what parents have known intuitively for a long time: Sitting down for a nightly dinner is good for the spirit, the brain and the body. Research shows that shared meals are tied to many teenage behaviors that parents pray for: reduced rates of substance abuse, eating disorders and depression; and higher grade point averages and self-esteem. For young children, conversation at the table is a bigger vocabulary booster than reading aloud to them. The icing on the cake is that kids who eat regular family dinners grow up to be young adults who eat healthier and have lower rates of obesity.

Click HERE to see Anne’s 7 reasons why you should plan a family dinner soon!
Anne K. Fishel, Ph.D., author of “Home for Dinner: Mixing Food, Fun and Conversation for a Happier Family and Healthier Kids,” is the director of the Family and Couples Therapy Program at Massachusetts General Hospital and an associate clinical professor of psychology at the Harvard Medical School. She is the cofounder of The Family Dinner Project and writes the popular blog “Digital Family” for “Psychology Today.” You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

Teaching Kids Self-Motivation and Manners

Today’s focus on the Morning Thing was all about bettering your kids.

We started the show by sharing some ways to encourage self-motivation in your children. You can find the full list by clicking HERE.

We also shared 10 manners parents should be teaching their kids, but often don’t. You can find that article HERE.

In the 7 am hour, we shifted gears a little bit and told you all about International Strange Music Day. For more information on the unique holiday, head over HERE.

Have an awesome Wednesday!

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