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13 November 2012


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I read that as 'Ali is calm'. Having problems with mental attitude here too. Tom, the middle one, has thrown in the towel with regard to his art gcse. I'm having an uphill battle to re-enthuse him. I'm feeling bad because it was me who encouraged him to take art. Honestly it has the most coursework of any gcse ever.

Thomasina Tittlemouse

What you write is so true Ali - parenting gets progressively more and more a foray into the unknown it seems! The problems of babyhood all seem so simple looking back but of course that's with good old hindsight. I honestly believe that listening, communicating that we're behind them and will be there whatever happens and spouting some positive and encouraging words with whatever one has to hand for inspiration is actually pretty good. H knows I can't fix his physics problem or why he hasn't been picked for the first eight rowing team - but I hope he just knows that even though I can't make head or tail of the text book or take the rowing coach to task, I still think he's the bees knees and will do regardless of anything else. Did you ever read John Diamond's autobiography? In it he referred to his parents not being particularly well-off or sophisticated or anything but who instilled in him an unbeatable confidence because they believed in him so much. I always remember this and try to replicate it as best I can. Life is full of disappointments and things that don't go as well as we hope - knowing there's someone who still thinks you are wonderful doesn't take any of that away but makes it possible to face it without despairing I think. Love your banner! Also love your compound word game - still pondering one of your clues though I think I have the others! E x

French Knots

I stitched the same words on a little embroidery I designed a couple of weeks ago, with three children though it is rarely calm here!


Oh your words ring so true, the longer I've been parenting, the less I seem to know. In retrospect I can see that those toddler tantrums and sleepless nights were a walk in the park.

So we listen and love and cheer them on.

Love the banner.


Great words of wisdom, Ali. There's a lot to be said for positive mental attitude, although I think too few people believe in it these days as we're so used to having everything done for us, rather than manning up and taking responsibility for ourselves.

I'm often floundering for the right response to those awkward pre-teen problems but usually just saying the right thing, however apparently corny, seems to work - maybe it just puts things in perspective for them or maybe it's just having their concerns listened to that helps.

It amazes me how often I hear myself coming out with exactly the same thing as my Mum would have said :o)



I find even though mine are all young adults, listening and giving encouraging words is often the very best thing you can do. And if you believe All is Calm... it will be!

Nina - tabiboo

I remember reading somewhere once that words can be powerful things - especially to children. I'm sure you're words of wisdom are deep set somewhere - even if they are well worn words.

Nina x


So, so true. A positive attitude is one that I expect at my table too. Usually it's just me, as the person opposite me has, unfortunately, been made to feel like a total dunce by his so-called educators and consequently has made a pigs ear of things a bit.

Onwards and upwards, I suppose, and like one of your other commenters says, he is the best thing since sliced bread to me whatever he does or doesn't do.

PS. I need that banner up all year round!


A calming banner in glitter card? If that doesn't work, nothing will. We're trying positive thinking here too. It does not come naturally to me, being 80% Eeyore, but I have to try for my girls.


wise words indeed Ali, and think an extra banner that says Ali is calm would be a year round winner!


Let me know if it works and I'll put one up myself.


What a super banner. I could probably use one of those too :) K x


Bunkum is my middle name. It's amazing how much words can take hold of a situation or lay anxiety to rest. Lovely banner.


Ha, thought the same as Sue- Ali is bright...

Eight year old angst and self-doubt here in abundance but what I say just seems to make matters worse. Having a four year old sister who is on very good terms with herself is no help either.

I am going to make one of those garlands. But mine WILL say Ali...!

Annie @ knitsofacto

Ooh, I LOVE the banner :D

I agree that we can only really support our children as they find their own way through life's challenges, it's all part of joy of parenting ;)

My eldest just ran his first full marathon ... 5 hours, he's coming back from injury (he used to be a rower) ... it was positive thinking that got him to that finish line ...so proud of him!

Rattling On

I saw Ali is calm as well! Maybe you should change it to that...

UK lass in US


I get worried about sports over here: some of the parents seem to be a little intense (I think they're hoping for a sports scholarship from about age 5...). So far I just keep telling my kids that it's for their enjoyment, but that I am never going to care whether they win or not - just that they are doing their best for the rest of their team and that they are having fun. That even if they are playing on an international level, it will still be just a game. Unfortunately the England rugby team helped illustrate my point this morning...


that right .. I love this blog

Andy Lee

I like this article so much!HYPE!

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