Family Happy New Year

Favorite family activity to wish a SoSooper New Year!

The Family Feedback

One of our most precious family moments comes after Christmas. That’s when we share what each person does well and how we can be even stronger as an individual and as a family.

We” means the kids start with the feedback and Mom & Dad L.I.S.T.E.N.

[bctt tweet=”The Family Feedback:  kids share and parents LISTEN.”]

The structured process keeps discussion positive.  Each child gets to share:
One Great Thing that Mom or Dad do
(and the kids want them to keep doing)
– One Thing they would like to Change about Family Life
(it would hugely improve family life for them)


You may be surprised by the suggestions!

Some “To change” suggestions could be a no-brainer “YES.”  One child asked, “Please, no more lemon cake.”

Other requests could merit deeper discussion.  (“More screen time.”  “No veggies.”)  Talk it over while everyone is calm and together.

The Family Feedback works with kids of all ages

with teens

Teen boys

Click here


with kids

Family meeting with parents and kids

Click here


with tots

Click here

Download Free Tools

SoSooper prepared some worksheets for you:

  • to prepare
  • to succeed
  • to remember

Free download

Click here to get your free downloads.


We’d love to hear from you.  Give us YOUR feedback too in the comments below!


Cover photo by Brooke Lark on Unsplash

African girls and boys choir singing

Sing Your Heart Out

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

Original Gospel-Jazz Songs
by Ruth Naomi Floyd

How to receive this gift?  Take the fun quiz on the Parent Advent Calendar today and you will receive the download link.

Ruth Naomi Floyd offers us music to soothe the soul … and to surprise us.

Through Christmas day you can download six of her original compositions of Gospel Jazz.  The link is on the Parent Advent Calendar behind door 24.

Gospel & Jazz?

When I think of jazz I conjure up images of African-Americans in New Orleans and then Parisian night clubs.  Yet Ruth brings us jazz tunes with lyrics inspired by the Bible.

It’s an unexpected union. And it’s beautiful.

Ruth Naomi Floyd fine arts photo
Also a fine arts photographer, Ruth combines surprising juxtapositions in song as well as in images.

Beautiful Unexpecteds

Tomorrow we celebrate Christmas.  Another unexpected juxtaposition.  According to Christian theology, Christmas celebrates when God comes to earth in the form of Jesus, God’s Son in flesh and blood.  Why would an all powerful god debase himself so much as to become a human…and a helpless baby at that?!  It is unexpected, to say the least.  And to those who believe, it is beautiful.

Our hope in sharing this music is to encourage you and me to invite in the unexpected and to allow ourselves to be challenged and comforted by its beauty.

  • In the way we view our children – seeking (hunting down) their positive qualities and then building on them
  • In the way we view ourselves – allowing imperfection. We grow THANKS to mistakes
  • In the way we view our parenting – full of hope and purpose


And as we introspect, let’s SING!

Music is Good for your Health

Our brain, heart, lungs, and emotions all benefit from listening to music, and even more from singing.

Ruth Naomi Floyd singing.
Ruth in full health. Photo by George Wells

Benefits of listening to music

Studies show that listening to music makes people happier, less stressed, less sensitive to pain, better performers in sports and in school, and helps with recall.

What?  With recall!

I wonder if it helps children with temporary memory loss remember to clean their room, to stop fighting with their brother/sister, and more!

That’s what we are banking on with these fun tunes to motivate children.  Enjoy!

Benefits of singing

Here’s how Stacy Horn, the author of Imperfect Harmony: Finding Happiness Singing With Others recaps the benefits of singing together.

What researchers are beginning to discover is that singing is like an infusion of the perfect tranquilizer, the kind that both soothes your nerves and elevates your spirits.

The elation may come from endorphins, a hormone released by singing, which is associated with feelings of pleasure.  Or it might be from oxytocin, another hormone released during singing, which has been found to alleviate anxiety and stress. Oxytocin also enhances feelings of trust and bonding, which may explain why still more studies have found that singing lessens feelings of depression and loneliness.

It turns out you don’t even have to be a good singer to reap the rewards.

So gather around for some Christmas caroling “en famille.”

Need the lyrics?  Look them up here.

Girl eyeing cupcake

Celebrate Today…with Cake!

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

24 delightfully decorated cupcakes
by English Dream Cakes

How to receive this gift?  Take the fun quiz on the Parent Advent Calendar today and you could be the lucky one to win the draw.

A party without cake is just a meeting.
Julia Child

A day without celebration is just a series of tasks.
SoSooper & English Dream Cakes

Cheryl and Dew, the culinary artists of English Dream Cakes, are offering 24 decorated cupcakes…for you to create an occasion for celebration.  The gift is valid through the end of February.  Their hope is to provide a reason for a party.  No need to wait for a birthday.  Today is an occasion for conviviality.

Decorated cupcakes by English Dream Cakes
Cupcakes decorated by English Dream Cakes
Decorated cupcake by English Dream Cakes

The winner of these 24 cupcakes gets to choose the desired décor. Yummy!

Carpe Deum – Celebrating Today

A mother of 3 young children recently shared a frustration: life with little kids is constant interruptions.

  • In the morning rush she finally gets everyone out the door and walking to school…and the little one has a pebble in her boot. The trip to school is interrupted.
  • The children splash in the bath and one slips and gets hurt. You were cooking dinner. No longer.
  • You’re on the ski slope and one child mutters, “I have pipi in my weewee.” Ski is put on hold for everyone the time to go the bathroom.

A wizened mother of 6 children shared with me her secret to perspective…and good humor throughout child-chaos-filled days.

Interruptions ARE the real life.

Interruptions ARE the real life, not distractions from it.  She pointed me towards C.S. Lewis’ quote (author of the Chronicles of Narnia and more):

“The great thing, if one can, is to stop regarding all the unpleasant things as interruptions of one’s ‘own,’ or ‘real’ life. The truth is of course that what one calls the interruptions are precisely one’s real life.”

Transform Interruptions into a Celebration

Not long after my conversation with Wise Mom (above), my children’s teachers went on strike (again).  This DEFINITELY constitutes a big-time disruption in my planned-to-the-minute life.

Instead of whining about the French national education system (which I felt like doing), we transformed this interruption into an opportunity for celebration and invited other parents and children over. A potentially very-bad-day turned out to be a re-energizing benefit for parents and children.

Try it too.

Combat Gloom with a Celebration

Winter in Paris feels glum. The white stone buildings appear grey.  So do the concrete streets and sidewalks.  The bare trees take on a greyish hue…

That’s where the English Dream Cakes cupcakes can transform your season.  With 24 delicacies, you have the ingredients to create a party just because.

Try out one of these party themes

  • It’s great to be alive
    Carpe Deum. Seize the day.  We cannot change the past.  Our attitude about today will impact our future.  Love life today.
  • Meet the neighbors
    Make friends of your neighbors. VERY helpful for parents.  Read here.
  • Meet the parents of your kids’ friends
    Discover who your kids hang out with. As soon as your children have phones, it is difficult to know about their friends.  Find out now & invite parents and kids together.
  • We’ve come a long way
    Everyone celebrates an accomplishment
  • I will survive
    Studies show strong relationships provides emotional and physical strength to overcome.  Get together with friends for encouragement if you need it now…or because you might need it later.
  • We’re stronger together
    Be a model of teamwork for your children.
    “I’ll bring dreamy cupcakes.”
    “I’ll bring bubbly for all ages.”
    “I’ll bring decorations.”
    “I’ll bring poker chips.”

You can also order your dreamy and delicious cakes directly from English Dream Cakes here.

Dad and daughter cuddling and smililng

Spell “love” T.I.M.E.

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

Gift Certificates to offer to your children and your spouse – “My Time, Your Way”
by Denise Dampierre of SoSooper

How to receive this gift?  Take the fun quiz on the Parent Advent Calendar today and you could be the lucky one to win the draw.

Time as a present to offer

Money cannot buy time.  Not when it comes to time spent with kids.

Play-together-time often misses the Christmas list…AND yet, it’s the gift kids crave.

How does one “give” time?  How can one make it feel like a present?

That’s why we created these Gift Certificates.  Personalize with your child’s name and you signature, et voilà!  You have a valuable stocking stuffer you and your children will cherish.

Click here to download Gift Certificates.

Kids and Parents Learn Through Play

Play teaches children how to overcome boredom, to follow rules, to win and lose well.

Let kids direct the play (that’s your gift). You’ll discover them WHILE helping your child learn life-skills.

You thought your daughter was impatient? She spends ½ hour dressing and undressing a doll! That’ll stretch the fortitude of many adults.

One Mom’s Story

The first year I offered these gifts to my sons they all invited me to play their favorite video game.  “Oh, no! Wrong gift!” I thought.

These shared screen times taught me so much.  This time was “extra video time” for the children and since the intent was to share a moment together, they willingly spent 30 minutes teaching me why they like this particular game, what makes it exciting, and how to win.

I observed their skills (or lack of) in anticipation, in strategizing, in concentration, and more.

And the following week when they struggled with homework, we applied ideas from the game to help concentration.  “Let’s create levels.  When you finish your first math problem, you reach level 2!”

The next year, I gave each child two gifts of time. One could be used for games on screens. The other was for something else of their choice.  One child wanted to learn more about his bank statement.  Another wanted to go shopping.

I kept doing this for years, even when our eldest was in high school.  He asked for a visit to the ophthalmologist to see about contact lenses!

You Don’t Feel Like It

Screen games or doll dressing isn’t your cup of tea? Is homework theirs?

Look to the bigger picture.  You’re creating memories, proving their importance, and connecting on their level!  You’ll be amazed how that encourages them to seek to connect on issues of importance to you…like picking up their bags and coats in the front hallway.  Seriously.

The Children Don’t Feel Like It

Kids might act like they don’t want to play with you.

“Children often resist love when they need it the most,”

assert Dr. Scott Turansky and nurse Joan Miller, authors of Parenting is Heart Work. Be creative and kindly insistent. They might be testing the sincerity of your offer.

If the kids don’t want to play, consider admiring them for 15 minutes. No words. No judgement.  Simply seeking to understand them in their environment.

Say “Thank You”

That magic word for all ages concludes your time together on a positive note.

The Biggest Kid of Them All

How about playing with your spouse……! We’ve got a gift certificate for them too!

Gift Certificate for couple's romance
Gift Certificate for couple's romance

To receive Gift Certificates click here.

Photo by Caroline Hernandez on

Woman gently holding vulnerable child

Give a Gentle Answer

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

Family Tickets to the “Calm Anger” Parent + Child Workshop
from SoSooper 

How to receive this gift?  Take the fun quiz on the Parent Advent Calendar today and you could be the lucky one to win the draw.

Today’s gift invites BOTH disagreeing parties to join in fun activities and guided discussions to

  • Clarify the issue of dispute
  • Identify triggers to outbursts
  • TOGETHER find solutions to gain agreement
  • Make a routine chart to stay on track

Parents and children leave with a practical action plan to BOTH avoid outbursts AND resolve them quickly when they happen.

And it’s fun!


WHO is the REAL opponent?

The parent, the spouse, the child, or the issue?

Isn’t is amazing how a simple issue can suddenly escalate into a battle between parent and kid?  In our coaching we hear worried parents ask, “What is wrong with my child?… What is wrong with ME?!”

Take heart.

“Children who argue have good character qualities like persistence, perseverance, determination, creativity, and an ability to communicate ideas. The problem with arguing is that your child views you as an obstacle.”

Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller, in Good and Angry: Exchanging Frustration for Character in You and Your Kids!

How to get out of arguing with children?


Boxing girl by Frank deKleine


Let parent and child partner together in finding a solution.

It takes two people to have an argument.

And BOTH arguers contribute to the disagreement and BOTH can orient the exchange towards peace.

Miller and Turansky remind us that the subjects we argue about are often not THAT important.


Images by Madi Robson from Unsplash, SoSoooper, and

Woman gently holding vulnerable child

Répondez avec Douceur

Le Cadeau du Jour sur le calendrier de l’avent Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home

Billets Gratuits pour l’atelier “Calmer les colères” pour parents + enfants ensemble.
de SoSooper

Comment recevoir ce cadeau ? Faites le quizz amusant du Calendrier de l’Avent pour Parents aujourd’hui, et vous avez l’opportunité de gagner le cadeau grâce à notre tirage au sort. N’hésitez plus, la chance est avec vous !

Voici un aperçu de l’atelier. A travers des jeux et des activités en famille, vous aborderez des discussions enrichissantes :

  • Clarifier les differends
  • Identifier les déclencheurs de crises
  • ENSEMBLE trouver des solutions pour obtenir un commun accord
  • Faire un tableau de routine pour rester sur la bonne voie

Les parents et les enfants repartiront avec un plan d’action pratique pour éviter les crises à la maison ET les résoudre rapidement quand cela se produit.

Et c’est amusant !


QUI est le RÉEL adversaire?

Le parent, le conjoint, l’enfant ou le problème?

N’est ce pas incroyable de voir comment un problème simple peut soudainement dégénérer en une véritable bataille entre parent et enfant ? Dans notre coaching, nous entendons des parents inquiets demander : “Qu’est-ce qui ne va pas avec mon enfant? … Qu’est-ce qui ne va pas chez moi” ?!

Gardez l’espoir !

“Les enfants qui se disputent ont certaines qualités de caractère comme la persévérance, la détermination, la créativité et la capacité de communiquer leurs idées. Le problème de la dispute avec votre enfant, c’est qu’il vous voit comme un obstacle.”

Dr. Scott Turansky et Joanne Miller, dans Good and Angry: Exchanging Frustration for Character in You and Your Kids!

Comment sortir des disputes avec vos enfants?

Boxing girl by Frank deKleine


Laisser le parent et l’enfant s’entraider pour trouver une solution.

Il faut deux personnes pour avoir un argument.

Et les deux arguments contribuent au désaccord. Néanmoins les deux peuvent orienter l’échange vers la paix.

Miller et Turansky nous rappellent que les sujets sur lesquels nous nous disputons ne sont souvent pas si importants.


Images de Madi Robson sur Unsplash, SoSoooper, et

Mary at Villa Manon

Exercise Together

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

1 hour Private Yoga Class for the Entire Family
by Mary Holmes Smith of the Villa Manon studio 

How to receive this gift?  Take the fun quiz on the Parent Advent Calendar today and you could be the lucky one to win the draw.

6 Reasons to Love Mary’s Family Yoga Class

1. Family Exercise makes great memories

Family sport takes us out of our normal interaction (which can often be individually focused) and puts us in a team environment.

Instead of having Daughter playing in her room, Son hiding his head in earphones, and Mom & Dad catching up on social media, EVERYONE is focused on the SAME activity.

And that creates shared memories.

As each family member grows, they also gain in independence.  Family fun can possibly “just happens”;  more often there is some intentional planning behind the scenes.  Like scheduling a workout for the entire family!

Mary at Villa Manon
Mary Holmes Smith (left) with her contagious joy

2. Parents get a break

Parents get to follow while Mary leads the group with charm and proficiency

I asked a professional skier how he got his children engaged in the sport: “I had someone else teach them.”

When someone else leads, parents enjoy co-participation.  Bye-bye power struggles, harsh words, or whatever’s of family life are irrelevant at Villa Manon, Mary’s peace-filled and cozy studio.  It’s a fresh start for all.

In the years when our 4 boys born within 7 years were little, I cherished moments when we could be together under someone else’s care.  It made it easier to enjoy the kids…instead of trying to control them ☹!

Allow yourself to be led.  Allow Mary to lead the children her way.  After all, she’s offereing a stretching exercise!

3. Children (of all ages) calm their emotions through physical exercise.

In their book, The Whole -Brain Child, neurologists Daniel Siegel, M.D. and Tina Payne Bryson, PhD. remind us that bodily movement directly affects brain chemistry.

Exercise enables the “downstairs brain” (responsible for our emotional reactions) to reconnect with our “upstairs brain” (the thinking part of the brain).  In other words, movement helps us calm down and think more clearly.

(For more about the brain, see this child-friendly video).

With Mary, you and the children will learn and practice simple techniques to oxegenate the body, nourish those cells with water and air, and stretch tense muscles.

Simply put, you will feel better…and you will discover muscles you did not know you had!

4. Children love it

In my Parent + Child workshops, I begin each session with a short movement exercise.  (Mary has often provided wise counsel for the right activity for various ages.)

During one class we began with stretching.  Everyone reached up high standing on their toes.  When I proceeded with, “Bend down and touch the floor,” several three year old’s got down on their knees and dropped their bodies and hands on the floor.  Sprawl. (We adults merely bent at the waist.) Up they stretched again.  Sprawl back down.  I tried not to smile tooooo hard as these tots valiantly stretched with concentrated effort.  Precious.

For our “Stop Repeating Yourself” workshop, I embarked with a very repetitive, repetitive, repetitive exercise.  The second time, most parents caught on.  By the third time, they were rolling their eyes.  The children, on the other hand, were having a blast!  They wanted more and more and more!

5. Get Yoga and More

Mary is also a certified Pilates instructor and an experienced in Fit-box and Powerstrike.  This sport consists of performing boxing movements individually and set to music.  Check her out on this video.

If your family tends to the dynamic, bouncy side, you might try yoga to learn about focus…and in the middle switch to some Kick-boxing moves to expend that overflowing energy.

Villa Manon6. Enjoy the haven of Villa Manon

Villa Manon, Mary’s studio, looks out onto a verdant garden. Going there is like stepping off the fast track of life into a harmonious haven.  It is located at 3 Parc de Jardies in Sèvres, just 3 minutes by foot from the railway station direct to St. Lazare.  You can also contact her for a private class “chez vous.”


Follow Mary & Villa Manon

Villa Manon
3 Parce des Jardies
92310 Sèvres
(by Sèvres-Ville d’Avray train station)
email Mary Holmes Smith


Go on an Adventure Together

Today’s Gift on the Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home advent calendar for parents

One Free Poke Bowl with one purchased
from Poke Bar Hawaii – Paris

What is a Poke Bowl?

Poke is a delicious, fresh, complete food!  It’s the traditional Hawaiian fishermen’s salad with a twist of modern French cuisine.

At Poke Bar you create your own poke bowl à la carte.  Salad or rice? Marinated fish or _____?  Veggies and / or fruit?  French dessert (!) or lighter fare?

It’s the fun of choosing the toppings on the pizza with the health benefits of the fresh outdoors.

Kids get to be in charge of their meal and to co-create their unique dish.  THAT’s a discovery!

Hawaiian Sun Warming Parisian Winters

Who said there were only 50 shades of grey?

In the wintertime, Paris unsparkles with 100 000 nuances between black-like and white-ish.  Grey skies. Grey sidewalks. Grey buildings. Grey fashion….

That’s why a pause at Poke Bar boosts both body and spirit during this winter season.  The bright wallpaper transports you and the children to Hawaii.  Elodie and Isabelle’s sunny welcome shines bright. Mosey on over to their cozy hotspot.

How does a Poke help build
Joy. Peace. Love. @ Home?

Discovery changes dynamics.

Did you notice how your child’s comfort zone differs from yours?  Discovery brings those zones together.

Parent & Child Comfort Zones

You like a living room with comfy sofas on which to sit and decorative throw pillows to add ambiance.

The kids prefer a living room build like a fort:  the sofa is pulled away from the wall, the throw pillows cover the floor for comfort, and the (wet) towels were dragged through the apartment to create the fort roof.

Comfy for mom & dad ≠ comfy for kids!

And oftentimes, the children must acquiesce to the parents’ definition of “acceptable.”  It sounds like, “Clean up!  N.O.W.”

The Gift of Discovery

Yet there is a time when parent and child find themselves on “neutral” territory.  When on a discovery, EVERYONE discovers new ground.  (For a moment) Mom and Dad put aside their role of “expert in charge” and put on a wide-eyed, expectation-filled mindset.  Kind of like a kid!

Find a Discovery Next Door!

In our busy lifestyles, we families often relegate new experiences to vacation time.

What city/country/continent should we visit?

What if discovery were right around the corner?  Or even in the fridge?!

We love food experiences because it makes discovery accessible, frequent, and fun.

Food Discovery…Fun?

Some parents cringe at the idea of getting kids to taste new foods.  We have each found ourselves playing a version of each of these roles…and it’s no fun.

The Reasoner: “You can’t eat noodles for the rest of your life.  Just try ONE bite.”

The Briber: “If you try just one bite, you can have your favorite desert.

The Police: “This food or nothing.

Why not try a different approach?

1. Start with your mindset

Decide to enjoy yourself for this discovery moment.  You cannot force anyone else to think or feel like you.  So be generous and give them the choice (and responsibility) for their thoughts and actions.
There will be other meals to insist on green peas or carrots or broccoli.  Make this experience special.

2. Be the example of “Food discovery = Fun”

Focus on YOUR learning.  What if you created a poem about the new foods?

“Cherry tomato. Pop. Squirt.
Fish & Hot Spice & Fruit.Who would have thought?  It works!! …”

Take full responsibility for YOUR attitude.  When your child grunts and glowers, you can choose to react to it or to ignore it for now.

3. Believe in your children and that they can manage the responsibility of their choices.

If your child does not want to eat, he might get hungry.  In our western culture, where many of us over-consume, is that the end of the world?  Might it generate thankfulness for what she has often taken for granted?
Reality is a powerful teacher.  (Usually way more impactful than a lecture by a frustrated parent!)

4. Provide the children with a place to disagree

Some cultures consider fish eye balls (raw) to be a delicacy.  You and I may disagree.Your child is allowed to not like bitterness of watercress soup, the chewiness of pulpa, or the crunch of carrots.Teach them how to express their reservations in a constructive manner.
For our next food discovery outing, could we just try desserts? ????

5. Prepare the children in advance – both for the outing and for your attitude

Let the kids know about your choice of attitude.
Expect them to test it!  Be ready to smile and count to 10 before answering them.

Thank You

Poke BarPoke Bar – Hawaii-Paris
24 rue du 4 Septembre, Paris 75002
Métro : Opéra ou 4 Septembre – 01 70 69 94 32

Follow them


What kids hear when parents repeat 1000 times

A favorite moment in our Parent + Child Workshop is when children and parents switch roles.*

Children dress up as parents (yes, we do costumes).

The tykes also get to speak like Mom and Dad.  (Yay…or Oh, oh?)


Parents take on the role of the child.  Discovery time…


When Learning is Fun

Do you know people succeed better when they feel better?

Children do better when they feel better. Click to Tweet

That’s why we make learning fun.

The youngsters playing Dad donned ties (vintage 1970’s, no less) and the top hats.  We accessorized actresses in the mother role and wrapped them in scarves.

To help children get into their roles, we stood them up on a ledge so that they would, physically, be looking down at their “kids.”

Positive energy and excitement flowed.  Parents (acting as kids) grinned at the fun.


Scene 1 – Surprise

In line with our theme of the day, Stop Repeating Yourself – Create a Culture of Listening, the children performed phrases they often hear from their parents.

Without prompting each young actor interpreted his phrase with an “appropriate” tone of voice. It went like this:

“Put your coat on.”

“Stop whiiiiiiiining.”



Parents (acting as kids) now wore these expressions on their faces…

…and exclaimed:

“W.O.W.  What an ‘Aha! Moment!'”

“They are barking at me!”

“I don’t want to do any of those things.  It’s so demotivating.”


Scene 2 – Engagement

We went for another round of phrases from the moms and dads (played by the children).  This time they asked questions instead of giving instructions.

“What should you wear so you won’t be cold?”

“What words could you use so that I hear you?”

“How will you keep your teeth from hurting?”


As the parent actors spoke their lines, we heard other children spontaneously answer the questions. “Coat” “Please”  “Brush teeth”


Stepping Back to Move Forward

Debrief time.  So, folks, what happened?

“We talked nicer the second time,” piped up a girl swirling her beads.

“I knew the answers,” proudly announced a youngest sibling.


The group of parents (acting as children) recuperated their smiles.

“They were expecting a response from me,” shared an engaged parent.

“It made me think,” admitted a dad enjoying a weekend off of work.

“I want to speak this way in our home, but what questions should I ask?!!!!” exclaimed a mother stepping back into her parenting role.


What generated the transformation in responses?

We replaced distancing commands with engaging questions that still “get the job done.”

This type of questioning is a tool from Positive Discipline, a science-based approach to building collaborative relationships.  It enables parents to be BOTH Firm AND Kind SIMULTANEOUSLY.  The expected results are crystal clear AND the exchange emanates warmth and connection.

Stop repeating 1000X : replace commands with engaging questions. Click to Tweet

Chez Vous – In YOUR Home

What are the phrases you repeat, repeat, and REPEAT?

What questions that “get the job done” could you ask instead?


Want some help?  Jot us a note.  We answer with a smile.


*This role-play is inspired by a Positive Discipline activity developed by Dr. Jane Nelsen and Lynn Lott.

From “Brush your teeth” to “I love you”

This post is for moms and dads who feel like they repeat themselves 1000x/day.

How can we get children to listen IN OUR HOME?

Effective parenting tools are great…but help me apply them!

That’s why we developed SoSooper Parent + Child workshops like the one we held on Saturday: Stop Repeating Yourself – Listen with Curiosity Questions.

Sign up for this workshop.  We’re doing it again in central Paris on October 7.

Parents Want Tools & Kids Want Play

The parents’ objective centered on getting the kids to listen. They wondered how it could be possible.

The children wanted to have fun, go on an outing, and be with mom and dad.

We aim to please both.  The smiling faces tell us we did.

We’re doing So Sooper!

Surprise-filled Activities

Parents & Children switch roles

“Kids, would you like to play Mom & Dad for a while?”  Children’s eyes popped excitedly…and off we went to try on costumes.

Commands Lead to Rejection

Scene 1:

The parents’ eyes and ears grew wide as they heard their children give them instructions.  In a commanding voice, 6-year-old told his dad to “Put his coat on” and to “Stop playing on the computer.”

Father responded with “No, no, no” until he exclaimed, “Woah! Son.  You’re bossing me around!”


Questions Generate Engagment

Scene 2:

The children (acting as parents) then replaced the instructions with questions. Here was a fun exchange:

Parent (played by a child): “What is our agreement on Computer Time?”

Child (played by a parent speaking defiantly): “I can play when I want!”

Parent (played by a child): “What is OUR AGREEMENT on Computer Time?”

Child (played by a parent):  Silence. “OK.  10 minutes.”

Everyone agreed that it felt better to be saying and hearing the questions.

But, parents enquired, how can we come up with the right questions when we need them?

Digging for Questions

For our next activity, parents and children gathered together in their own family units and explored for questions.

The kids knew by heart (!) the instructions repeated 1000 times.  They rarely really understood why.

Precious Sharing

Here is a precious exchange between a father and child:

Child: “I know, I know.  You always repeat that I need to brush my teeth.  Why is it important to brush my teeth?

Father: “So that you don’t have cavities.”

Child: What is important about a vacaty?”

Father: “A cavity is when your tooth gets sick and it hurts a lot.”

Child: Why is it important that my teeth don’t hurt?”

Father: “Because I love you.  I don’t want you to hurt.”

Child: Smile. “Because you love me.” Grin.

Finding Solutions

Together they came up with a question that Dad could ask at teeth brushing time,
“What do you need to do so that your teeth won’t hurt?”


This is what SoSooper is about.  Turning a challenging situation into a moment of connection between parent and child.

SoSooper helps parents turn a challenge into solutions while staying connecting with their… Click to Tweet

Join us next week.  We’re doing this same workshop in the center of Paris.  Click here to sign up.