Love or Nothing

Kids fight.

They also have team meetings on the hoods of vehicles, but that's not what I am here to talk about.  Back to the fighting part....

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Have you ever:

  • Wondered what it will take to get your kids to be kind to one another?
  • Felt exhausted by the constant bickering?
  • Tried every suggestion that anyone has ever given you?
  • Even tried a few suggestions you found on Pinterest?

Yup.

Me too.

I love them SO MUCH!  But they seem to enjoy fighting with one another which drives me nuts!!!  I typically don't let them see my internal frustration but try to remain calm.

Looking at Facebook and the perfect kids we tend to hang out with doesn't help. Because my kids appear on the outside to be kind, obedient kids. However, when they're at home, RV or house, they bicker, fight, and in general choose to not be kind to one another.

Like my last post, I'm on a streak of posting reality, letting it all hang out there, and explaining a new approach I've taken with the kids. We live in a broken, fallen world, so it won't work perfectly, but I have to try something.

My new mantra with them is 'Love or Nothing'.  Either they show love or they keep their mouths shut and their hands to themselves.  Don't we as adults forget to behave that way too?  It's easier to roll our eyes or pretend that we are listening than to really love a person.

To listen well and care about a person's circumstances and feelings.

To spend the extra time caring on a person which might cause you to be late for something.

To give the appropriate recognition to a person at work when you could take credit.

Love or Nothing.

It's our new phrase.

We don't take pictures of when the kids are bickering, though we should, just to be real. But Paul suggested I show some snippets of life over the last few weeks. Each of these pictures represents parts of why I love these kids.

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Love this kid; sometimes he plays the role of a clown quite well!

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I Love Horses. And these kids.

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Letting kids be kids. But how could you not love this?

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Kids digging the large aquarium in the hospital waiting room.

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These kids love books. And they love their cousins. Perfect combo in this typical situation at the Jusino house.

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Characters given away by their expressions.

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Non-washable markers can be put to good use, temporary hair dye.

Let's all try and remember today... Love or Nothing.  If I expect my kids to do it, I have to work hard to do it to those around me too!

How about you?

Tell me how you have chosen 'Love or Nothing' recently.

Home Along the Way is now on Pinterest!!!  Hover over the image below to reveal the Pin button!

Becky Kortman

I'm a homeschooling, world traveling, Jesus follower who is a wife and mom of 4 kids, In all my travels, I am looking for places that fit with my soul and feel as much like 'home' as they can this side of heaven.

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7 Comments

  1. Seija S. Webb

    Love your honesty … all such normal behaviour from children … no worries … you guys are doing awesome in your lifestyle choice …

    Reply
  2. Mandi

    I am glad we’re not the only parents dealing with fighting siblings. I can’t stand it. And it’s the worst when we travel. Which is a bummer because we love traveling.

    The real root of the problem is jealousy. One thing we learned to do right is to help them express their feelings. We also try to do a daily individual special time and that helps some. These kids have become special time vampires though, and hit up anyone who enters the house.

    This is a good reminder to focus on key values like expressing love or nothing. Thanks for sharing. I love hearing about all your adventures.

    Reply
    • Becky Kortman

      Thanks for commenting, Mandi! It’s good to know we aren’t alone.

      Reply
  3. Karen

    My children are grown now, my two oldest well into their 30’s. They are 2 years, 4 months apart. Amber is 37, and her brother Luke, 34. My own father was not a very nice person, and didn’t show real love to his kids. He was emotionally “void” when it came to us 5 kids, and so it was a constant competition clamoring for his love and approval. Needless to say, there was constant ciaos and bickering amongst us. I made a vow to myself, early on in motherhood, to not put my kids through that. I made it a point to be engaged in their lives, so that they didn’t feel the need compete against each other for my attention, and I simply taught them the same thing you are, to love one another. I didn’t allow fighting or bickering. Period. If and when they went there, they were put in time-out until they changed their attitude/s. Love or nothing. It worked very well for us. I do feel very blessed tho. Those two always got along very well, and to this day remain extremely close. Day before yesterday I watched, and listened to you handle a situation with one of the little ones, and I have to say, I was so very impressed. It brought back tons of memories of when mine were their ages. You are doing a great job. Kids will be kids, but as long as you continue to handle those situations as you are with “love or nothing”, I am certain that your family will remain close, and the kids will all have healthy loving relationships with each other, and you and Paul, as they grow older. Relax and enjoy them (as you are), they grow up so fast.

    Reply
    • Becky Kortman

      Wow! I am humbled! Thank you so much for sharing Karen. I greatly value your experience and insight. I will certainly keep putting in the hard work AND try to do better at enjoying them too! Thanks for the reminder!

      Reply
    • Paul Kortman

      Thank you so much Karen, what a blessing this comment is to us!

      Reply

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