Raewyn Peoples is a mother of four grown children, two girls and two boys, and has five granddaughters. She is also the author of The Kidz Manual and lives in Queensland, Australia.
How did you come up with the idea for your book?
When my children became responsible adults, I felt I must have done something right and decided to put a book together to help parents who are struggling. Raising kids is the hardest thing we can ever do, and we cannot be sure of success while we are doing it. We are dealing with personalities, sometimes stronger than ours.
What’s your favorite parenting tip?
Whatever happens, try to remain calm; remember who is the adult and who is the child.
How did you get your kids to eat healthy food and to exercise?
Start as you mean to go on; as soon as they go on solids, give them lots of fruit and veggies (they won’t like everything, do you?) and lots of healthy snacks. But be sure to give them some sweet treats now and again. When you take them shopping is a good time because it helps fend off the aisle tantrums. My kids spent their days outside, so I made sure they had plenty of outside toys and equipment. I know it is the age of technology, and I have as many gadgets as anyone, but try to restrict these to certain times of the day. If this isn’t possible, make sure they do plenty of walking and get them into local sports.
How do I recharge my batteries?
I read when I have the time, and when the kids were young, I did my shopping and had coffee with a friend at night when their father could look after them. For single mums, see if you can ask a relative or friend to babysit once a week, and pay them back in kind. If you are a working mum, it is much harder. Get relief time with friends, and be sure to have a good laugh.