Everything Family

Welcome to Everything Family! Resources offered here strive to honor and support everything that is family; whether experienced biologically, blended, chosen or otherwise created through love and or by need. Our respective families are always unique and evolving, sometimes zany, stormy, but held intact with a secret seamless sauce called love. Everything Family. Original Graphic of stressed out mom with her kids and large clock looming

Some years ago I was counseling a nine year-old girl named Jenna.* In our very first session I asked her, “So Jenna, what can you tell me about your family?” Now when you ask someone of any age to tell you about their family, how they respond, move, act, speak or don’t speak within the first 10-20 seconds is in itself telling.

Jenna thought for a moment about my question. With her arms pushing down on the sides of her chair, she lifted her body and pulled her feet up from the floor, crossed her legs in midair, plopped back down and reached for her backpack sitting nearby. Jenna yanked out what looked like a zebra striped billfold and held it up as If she had done this many times before. And with the twist of her wrist this girl of nine released a maze of cascading plastic sleeves, each with a name and notes on one side and an image of a person on the other. Jenna raised her arm so that the accordion-style pack of persons could unfold all the way down. And then she said, proudly, “This is my Everything Family. They’re crazy and I love them!”

I was moved to silence and wonder. From here, Jenna went on to explain in detail each person in her 3×5 snapshot with an image, name and important details painstakingly hand-printed on the backside. This was her living tree, her living tree called family.

Family is EVERYTHING

For most people, family is everything. It’s what we live for and what we would die for. Families are complicated, frequently messy and always in motion. At Rise This Day, Everything Family, much like our homes, functions to hold a variety of resources, stories and images that highlight the challenges, joys and hopes of family life.

Here, you will find links to topics on everything from mud pies to mobile redemption and from healing topics to how to eat a hotdog.  Like the closet down the hall that holds practically everything, Everything Family is the place to find whatever is family and people on Rise This Day. Please consider joining my list (upper right) and leave a comment below as well if you’d like. Thank you!

Here’s a sampling of topics related to Everything Family at Rise This Day.

Samples of Everything Family

Essential Reading for Parents Nuggets of wisdom and quotes that honor and support families.
Finding Rest In the Storm Naming our needs, finding help, rest and support.
Some Days We Just Need To Hang On! Sometimes a photo just says it all!
Fifty Miles In and Fifty Miles Out Finding our way back “home” following a life threatening crisis.
Snip-Stitch-Patch-and- Go A light-hearted romp through the medical maze of managing our health!
Splendid Table A photo essay of all the ways that we use tables in our lives and within our families.
Ten Parenting Tips Gentle tips regarding children and being a parent.
Claiming Space How busy people (especially parents!) manage to claim their space
Answering Questions About Grief and Loss A selection of frequently asked questions by parents during times of loss.
Getting Through Challenging Times Sometimes we just need a lift…and here’s some quotes that do just that!
“Recycle” My Kid! Need something to chuckle at? Check out how one parent deals with her teenager!
National Hotlines and Resources for Families A list of resources that I have referred parents to most over the years. (Hopefully, you won’t need them!)
Help! My Daughter is Cutting. A difficult topic for sure. Here’s some initial steps to consider.
And How are You doing? Sometimes our wows are not about family members, but about us, and how we’re doing. Check it out.
Supporting Children Following News of Mass Shootings Time proven tips (unfortunately) for helping your children deal with news of tragic events around the world.
Tips for Protecting Children Online Time proven tips for helping to keep your child safe on the Internet.
Insuring the safety of children Thise article was originally created for youth workers, but several parents have asked me to share it also.
Answering questions about divorce. Having run “Banana Splits,” for 18 years, a support group for kids whose parents are divorcing, I frequently fielded many questions from mom and dad on the topic too.
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 Everything Family .quality time for parents

Text and images by Kevin Lee

Everything Family

Graphic artwork created exclusively for Rise This Day
by Ma. Shayne Krizel Zalameda.