Yet Another Anti-Bullying Campaign

It’s true, mum and I have been floating on cloud nine after this happened last night:

A few days after we posted our blog Not Just Another Anti-Bullying Campaign, the boys we wrote it about (Bars and Melody) tweeted a link to the blog. Well we flipped obviously! It’s not everyday you get noticed by someone famous. After we got over the initial shock of being tweeted to over 200,000 people, we got more excited when we considered why we would be tweeted about.

Bars and Melody promote anti-bullying, and they’re famous for it. After their performance on Britain’s Got Talent, they went viral. Since then, they have moved on to travelling the globe spreading the word about how bullying affects so many people daily. The fact that these boys who have made it their life mission to support the anti-bullying campaign think that our blog about the topic was worth reading, is amazing.

These boys are really making a positive difference in the world and it feels really good to know that they think our post might help. Mum and I are so excited to know we have so many new readers who are willing to support Bars and Melody (and us of course) in the movement to stop bullying on a global scale.

As a teenager myself, I am surrounded by people who try and tell us their own bullying experiences and telling us to speak up if we are being bullied. As hard as it is to listen to these stories, there is always the thought that they are older than us and my generation doesn’t do that. However, when you hear a boy who is your age say that he was beat up for being different is a real reality check.

It’s really hard to imagine moving on from something like that but Leondre didn’t just move on, he went on to become a huge sensation that works towards stopping things like what happened to him. Well, I can say it’s working. Listening to all the girls talking after they spoke to us at my school, it was obvious that what they had said really stayed with them and probably will for the rest of their lives.

Bars and Melody are following the leads of other famous people who are taking a stand against bullying too. Some of these stars who feel just as strongly about the issue of bullying are Victoria Justice (star of Victorious), Demi Lovato (star who has faced bullying in the public eye as well as in private) and Josh Hutcherson (Peeta Mellark from the Hunger Games trilogy). As well as these individuals my favourite TV cast, Pretty Little Liars, has come out against bullying.

These particular people stand out to me as people that are doing similar work to Bars and Melody. This is because all of the solo people I spoke about have done TV and radio interviews to promote anti-bullying and have joined organisations devoted to the end of bullying. The Pretty Little Liars cast is different. The entire TV series is devoted to bullying and the impacts it can have on the lives of everyone involved. Its a great TV show to show the effects (whilst extreme) of cyber bullying.

After hearing Bars and Melody talk about bullying, sing their self written songs (did I mention they are 14 and 16 and have written their own song. Can you say talent?) and then have them tweet about my blog post, I can safely say that these two boys are doing a great job to stop bullying. If you haven’t already, I would suggest checking out their audition for Britain’s Got Talent, it really is an inspiring video.

Ciao, Ash

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Gorgeous Ashlea

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Saying something special to the person you love is the best present anyone can give. Give with your heart, share with your words.

Happy Birthday beautiful man

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Bali Holiday

SONY DSCIMG_1337People get excited over lots of different things. Some of the things I get excited most about are; school holidays, Christmas, my birthday, going on a holiday, movie release, book release, getting tickets to see my favourite band live in concert and getting to sleep in. Of course I get excited over little things too (usually the little things that no one else cares about, like my favourite TV show being renewed for two more seasons!!!) but, generally speaking, it doesn’t usually take much to get me excited.

The reason this topic has come up is because we are going to Bali very shortly. Our whole family has been counting down how long we have left until we leave (yes we do that) and are currently in the final days of waiting before we can leave. I can’t wait until we can leave as Bali is one of my favourite places I’ve ever been (we went there a couple of years ago.) Being excited is something that some people hate but some people love. I, personally, love the feeling of being excited.

There is nothing better than having something to look forward to. Whether it be school holidays or going for a run after school, being excited seriously helps to get through the boring things such as school or work. I love having something to think about when I’m bored which is part of the reason I can’t wait to go to Bali. I love looking forward to something so much that when I actually experience the thing I have been excited over, it feels just that little bit better.

💕ash

Are you a parent who yells at children’s sporting events?

My parents are the kind of parents who yell at mine and my siblings sporting events. They aren’t abusive yellers though, which is a good thing obviously, but they do have a tendency to go overboard (mum especially). I don’t have an issue with it, I’ve managed to tune out majority of it when I’m playing so I don’t actually hear much. However I know that there are people out there who absolutely hate it when their parents yell at their sports.

Whether it is because of embarrassment or because some parents aren’t quite so supportive in their yelling, some people just shouldn’t yell out at sporting games. I know that when I play my sports, there are times when there are parents (not mine) who verbally abuse players from the opposition or even their own kid. I think that parents, or anyone for that matter, who shouts out abusive comments to any child playing any sport should be immediately banned.

It can get quite distracting when someone from the sideline is constantly yelling out mean comments to anyone on the court. Some kids don’t like it when their parents call out anything at all, even comments like ‘good job’ or ‘keep going!’ It doesn’t bother me when I play but for some reason, I am more affected by it when I am watching one of my siblings play.

I find it frustrating as a spectator when all I can here is someone (usually my mum) yelling louder than the coach. It isn’t really an issue when it’s constructive calls. However when I have to play while listening to someone shout out things that shouldn’t be said to teenagers let alone little kid, it quite literally drives me insane.

💕ash

So I am a yeller! Thanks Ash for putting me out there. I must admit that when it comes to watching my children play basketball (all four play), I can’t seem to stay quiet. Basketball is a sport I grew up playing and I love watching it. I know this sport very well and feel confident with advising my kids to help them improve their game. Due to my vocal voice, I have put my hand up to coach both my girls next season. Maybe I need to use my voice in a constructive way.

When I yell, it is never negative comments, only positive instructions, and more often than not just to my child. We were recently at a netball game watching Ashlea play when a mother from the opposition team was being very inappropriate in her comments. She was shouting out to her daughter that she was doing nothing wrong and that our girl was just unfit and sloppy in her approach. The umpire had pulled the opposition girl up for unruly play ( which doesn’t happen often in our level), yet the mother couldn’t control herself. I was embarrassed for the girl and also the coach as he had to warn a parent on his own team to calm down.

On the weekend, my eldest son played basketball, a sport he is so passionate about that he knows the stats of every player in the NBA league. I hate seeing him upset with himself when he is not playing the quality of game he aspires to. This week was one of those games. His coach was screaming at him and this only made him play worse. After the game I spoke with my son and we discussed how he felt with the shouting from the sidelines. He knew he wasn’t playing well but made it worse when all he could hear was negative screaming from the sideline.

The next sporting game I watch with my children, I am going to sit there, quiet as a mouse, and watch only. I will see if this makes a difference with the way they play as I never want to be the one who makes them question their game. Sometimes when you think you are helping as a parent, you are actually making it worse.

Do you shout at your kids sports?

Cheers Natalie xxx

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When things get tough…..

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Are your children resilient?

IMG_0250Recently at a girlfriends house, I had my tarot cards read (secretly I love this stuff but can be a closed book when they are trying to open me up). My cards revealed that I need to let go of the reins a little and let my children make their own mistakes. I thought I was doing this but now I look back, I do try to protect them from being hurt or rejected, which may not always be the best way about it.

This got me thinking about how my children would handle a major set back in their lives. Are my children strong enough to handle rejection? Can my children pick themselves up after being knocked down and have a stronger ‘I can do it’ attitude? Are my children resilient?

As parents we do not want to see our children fail at anything, especially when they have worked hard to achieve it. As parents we know that failure or rejection is a part of life and at some stage everyone is going to have to face it. So as parents, we should be allowing our children to experience failure when they are young so they are more equipped to handle it when they are older.

I am definitely a person who looks at the world with the glass half full. Every now and then, the glass appears to be half empty but that usually only lasts a day or so. Recently I had a down 48 hours resulting from a few things that happened all at once. I cried for what I had lost, I felt sorry for myself for what I hadn’t achieved, I complained about how hard I work yet still not getting what I wanted and I cried again for failing. Once these emotions passed, I took back control of what I could and I let go what I could not change.

Baby steps is the way I will approach this. Letting my children feel rejection, not just understanding it, is the first step. When they do not succeed, I will allow them to feel the pain of failing before I try to step in to patch things up. I hope by doing this while they are still young, it will build a resilience to be able to pick themselves up and be strong enough to keep going when things get tough.

How do you help your children to resilient?

cheers natalie 

 

Since I’m only fourteen, I haven’t really faced anything that has made me want to give up what I’m doing. As well as this, I have, luckily, never had to experience something as horrible as some people have in the world. However, after talking to mum about my next big life event (year 12 exams), I have been forced to consider how I would react if I didn’t get the grades I needed to do what I want to do with my life (law school).

Obviously year twelve is a while a way but after talking to mum I was actually at a loss as to how I would react if I scored poorly in my exams. At the moment, if anything big happened to me I would most likely just brush it off and continue on with my life but something as big as exams, I have no idea how I would react. Unlike the mundane problems that I face today, if I failed my VCE, or even if I didn’t quite do as well as I would have liked, it would affect the rest of my life.

You have to score high marks to get into a university course for law so if I didn’t do as well I would never have my dream of becoming a lawyer. I think that it would be extremely hard for me to move on and do something different if I didn’t get my desired marks because if would drastically affect the future I want. Personally, I think that would be something that I would never really be able to let go of because it has been a dream of mine for years.

Of course, I would be able to move on with my life. It’s not like I would just give up and become a hermit who lives on fast food, I don’t think I could ever do that. If I couldn’t become a lawyer it would be a major setback in my future goals but I’m sure that I could bounce back (eventually) and find another dream to set my sights on. It would be hard, failing in something that can affect you’re whole future, but I don’t think I would ever let something stop me from living my life out happily.  

see ya Ashlea xx

Are my children too judgmental?

1496447_10152149039712323_1845298728_oI don’t think I am a helicopter parent as I try to let my children make their own decisions on many aspects of their lives. I always let them know that I have their back but like to push them a little to challenge themselves.

One lesson I have taught my children is you can do anything in life you wish, as long as you do everything in moderation. By this I mean, if you feel like eating chocolate, go for it, as long as it is in moderation. This applies to all aspects of life – food, drinks, exercise, homework, socialising and resting. If your body and mind get a little of everything, then you will never miss out, but not too much of anything, then it remains healthy and happy.

Recently I was out at the shops with Ashlea and child No.4 and I bought them lunch. ‘Healthy lunch’, I suggested as they searched for what to eat. Sushi and Subway were their choices, which secretly put a smile of my face. Both wanted a frozen drink to accompany their meals, so I happily agreed to one from Hungry Jacks. What astounded me was Ashlea’s comment when she returned to the table with her drink.

“Mum, it’s very off putting when you go to a place like Hungry Jacks and the manager is overweight. It makes you realise just how bad the food is for you.”

Have I turned my children into judgemental people? Yes, we talk about having everything in moderation as there is usually a consequence if you over indulge (like gaining weight). And yes we talk about the consequences of over eating, over exercising, over studying  and over doing anything in life. I love the fact that this lesson has been accepted by them and thought about. However, it never occurred to me that my children would begin judging others. There may be many reasons why this manager was over weight (one being what they eat) but there maybe other reasons for the weight issue.

Have you ever had a life lesson backfire on you?

cheers natalie

 

Am I too judgmental? Maybe. Personally, I just think I am highly opinionated, but to others, I may seem a tad too judgemental. I struggle to look at some people and not think ‘How?’ because I have been raised with the mantra “everything in moderation” and sometimes, I forget that not everyone has had the same upbringing as me. As much as I don’t want to go around judging people, I can’t help but compare myself to people who have clearly ignored the ‘moderation’ rule.

cheers Ashlea xxx

Adolescents get anxious

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Nothing better than your sister

Nothing better than your sister

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