When we think of parenting we usually are talking about the relationship between a mom or dad and his/ her kids. But becoming a strong parental team means the relationship between mom AND dad is the most important one, and KEY to parenting!
Marriage must come first. That means mom and dad must communicate with each other and decide together what disciplinary actions will be taken when. And when a situation comes up you don't say, "Just wait until your father (or mother) comes home!" You will have already agreed how to deal with stuff and so you manage it right then and there. Never make one parent the bad guy. Kids should know that if one parent says, "No", that they can't go to the other one to ask for what they want. And if you're not sure how to deal with something you tell the child, "When your dad (or mom) comes home we will discuss it and decide how to answer you."
Children feel most secure when they know mom and dad are.a strong team. So take some time out for each other! That means to continue to date. With four kids and a pastor's budget (one income stream) we didn't have extraneous money for many dates, especially when you have to pay for a babysitter - so going out to a movie and dinner, for example, was rare (maybe 3 times a year?) But we often did special cheap dates. After the kids went to bed, Steve would go out and buy desserts and bring them home. Oh what happy memories sitting on the couch eating chocolate mousse cake and talking about whatever was on our minds!
Another thing we would do regularly is that we would have "mommy and daddy time" after dinner. We would send the kids into the living room to play and Steve and I would linger at the table for another 30 minutes or so, usually with a hot drink, discussing our day. Some couples go for walks in the evening. Anyway, you get the idea that you have to make the time to communicate and enjoy one another. The kids NEED to see you as a team.
And now to "regail" you with a refashion....
Here is a man's cotton shirt that I bought at "Sally Ann's" (aka Salvation Army) for $2.
I made a skirt out of it. I lined the skirt out of another man's shirt, changed the buttons, and added daisy-lace around the waist. This skirt happened to match a top that was way too big for me (a hand-me-down from some generous soul) that I cropped to fit me better. Now I have a new outfit! I wore this on my first day of school this year.