Archive for the ‘Family First’ Category

How Strong is Your Family?

January 26, 2015 Comments Off on How Strong is Your Family?
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How Strong is Your Family?

“In a world of turmoil and uncertainty, it is more important than ever to make our families the center of our lives and the top of our priorities.” This statement by church leader Tom Perry resonates deeply for me. My thought is that you can deal with a lot if your family and marriage is strong, but when that foundation feels shaky, all of life becomes tumultuous.

I have a vision to strengthen marriages and families! I love this picture expressed by David R. Mace : “Nothing in the world can make human life happier than to greatly increase the number of strong families.” With that in mind, I offer this tool to assess the strength of your family life so you can experience increased joy, peace, and strength.

Caveat: We all have areas that need growth. Don’t allow any defeat to knock you down as you work through this. The purpose is to identify next steps to build the family you desire!

Respond to each of the following statements with a 1-5 rating, 1 being “strongly disagree” and 5 being “strongly agree”.

____ We have a written family vision that includes our mission, dreams/goals, and specific action steps to achieve those dreams/goals.

____ We are totally committed to our marriage/family. We’ve closed the “back door.” We’re in it for keeps.

____ We don’t have any fear of discipline for our kids. We are comfortable with our discipline strategies and consistently work together as a team.

____ The progress that we are making as a family is about what it should be for the effort we are putting in.

____ We have consistent, positive connections with each of our children.

____ We have a strong relational support network for helping build the family we desire.

____ Our children are an active part in creating our family vision.

____ We are confident that our family will accomplish our mission. We have no significant doubts or reservations.

____ Our family members can concisely articulate what we want for our family.

____ As parents, we know how to let our children fail in appropriate ways and learn from these experiences.

____ The purpose we have as parents is clear and we make our daily decisions according to this picture.

____ The stress of running our family has not seriously dampened the joy of our family life.

____ We have plentiful resources to help us accomplish our goals/mission as a family.

____ As parents, we regularly prioritize our marriage in order to keep the foundational relationship of our home strong.

____ As parents, we regularly prioritize “refueling” ourselves as individuals so that we can be joy-filled contributors to our family.

____ As parents, we model the behaviors and values that we desire for our kids to live out.

____ Our home is well-organized. We have systems and structures in place for our family operations.

____ Our finances are in order. We have an emergency fund and have developed a monthly spending plan that we agree on as a couple.

____ Our children participate fully in the work of our family. They understand that we are a “team” and fin order to be a successful family, each team member is a valuable contributor.

____ TOTAL

75-95 Rock-n-Roll! You have strong clarity on the family life you want and have aligned your daily choices with those desires!

55-74 You are building a solid foundation for your family. Celebrate your strengths and identify your next action step(s).

37-54 You may have a few areas that are stronger than others. Of the areas that scored low, which are most important to you? What support do you need to move forward?

1-36 If a strong family life is important to you, some significant adjustments need to be made.

There are few things that are more worthwhile in which to invest energy in this New Year as your home! A few action steps to consider:

• Read a great book, either individually or as a couple. Patrick Lencioni’s The 3 Big Questions for a Frantic Family is the resource on my nightstand right now.
• Plan to attend Marriage Inc., Date Night event.
• Many qualified coaches and counselors are available through the Marriage Inc. office. Call 815-939-5358 for a recommendation.


Family Coach Michelle Klavohn holds over 20 years in the field of Human Development. With a Master’s degree in Communication and 10 years as a Communication Educator, she equips families to close the gap between the family they dream of and the family they experience each day. She passionately pursues her vision to partner with families who want to thrive!

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Surviving the sleepless nights

September 14, 2010 Comments Off on Surviving the sleepless nights
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Having a newborn in the house can be one of the most stressful times in a couple’s life together.

For some helpful hints, check out these sites:

Shared baby sitting

September 13, 2010 Comments Off on Shared baby sitting
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When you are in the early stages of starting your family, financial needs can be great, but your need for a night out with your spouse can be even greater. You love your kids, but you need some “couple time.” And paying a babysitter the going rate is not always an option.

Ever thought of “share sitting?”

Share sitting is where you partner with other couples in the same stage of life by taking turns watching each others’ children. “We’ll watch your kids tonight if you’ll watch ours next week.”

Check out this website for more details on how to set up a share sitting cooperative and the benefits it can bring to your marriage and your children. A lot of details are provided, but don’t be afraid to modify their suggestions in order to meet your needs.