Be a daisy


Welcome to the July Carnival of Natural Parenting: Parenting Philosophy

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared their parenting practices and how they fit in with their parenting purpose. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.


This month’s Carnival of Natural Parenting theme of parenting philosophy is deep.  Taking a break from the everyday struggles of raising an almost two-year old to ponder her as an adult is helpful, but a bit daunting as well.  To aid me in my thoughts is one of my favorite movies Harold and Maude.  Here’s one philosophical conversation between Harold and Maude that I adore:

Maude: I should like to change into a sunflower most of all. They’re so tall and simple. What flower would you like to be?

Harold: I don’t know. One of these, maybe.

Maude: Why do you say that?

Harold: Because they’re all alike.

Maude: Oooh, but they’re *not*. Look. See, some are smaller, some are fatter, some grow to the left, some to the right, some even have lost some petals. All *kinds* of observable differences. You see, Harold, I feel that much of the world’s sorrow comes from people who are *this*,

[she points to a daisy]

Maude: yet allow themselves be treated as *that*.

[she gestures to a field of daisies]



Close up flowers in Dresden (Sept. 2008)

Parenting Philosophy: “Be a daisy”
My parenting philosophy stems in individuality– building strength within– to bloom into a caring, resourceful and courageous young lady in her family, classroom, workplace and community.

The three main parenting goals I have in mind to help her build a strong sense of individuality are: to celebrate her differences, to know her unique talents, and to be open to new adventures in life.

Celebrate her differences
Growing up it’s easy to want to be someone else or to think you don’t measure up.  At least that’s what I remember thinking many times from elementary school through high school.  By helping her to become aware of what makes her different– personality, interests, looks– and celebrating those, I hope she has fewer of those “I wish I were her” thoughts. I also want to make it a priority to not criticize my own looks or lack-of-talents in front of her.

Know her unique talents
It’s easy to become aware of your strengths and weaknesses, even as a child.  I remember knowing that I wasn’t good at sports in the first grade.  On the other hand, I knew that I had a talent for playing the piano and the violin.  It’s easier to define “talent” from something you see: playing an instrument, dancing, or Karate.   I want her to be able to find her unique talents, so naturally she will have ample opportunities of music lessons, organized sports, and/or whatever interests her. But the harder talents to recognize are those that aren’t seen in a talent show: listening, giving advice, taking care of loved ones, and thinking of others.  There are few people who truly listen and open their minds to new ideas.  In today’s world it is unique for someone to slow down and think of how she can help another in need.  I’m not a perfect example of this, but in small ways, hopefully we can work on this together.

Be adventuresome
Eleanor Roosevelt said, “We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face… we must do that which we think we cannot.” I would love to see my adult daughter “look fear in the face” and take on new opportunities with grace.  As she grows up, I want to encourage her to participate in new activities, even if she is intimidated.

I would also like to venture out of my comfort zone and have her do things that I’m not skilled at, like crafting, sewing, gardening, painting, and playing sports. Having her participate in both things that I’m good at and not-so-good-at shows her that it’s okay to not be perfect and instead, sometimes, you need to make a fool of yourself in the hope of enriching your life.

Through encouraging her to develop self-worth, talents and a sense of adventure, I hope she has the tools to accomplish everything her heart desires.


Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

  • Between Love and Fear: On Raising our Children Sensibly — Mamma Earthly at Give an Earthly discusses the fear factor in parenting and how she overcame it, despite societal pressures.
  • really, when do i get my cape? — Sarah at small bird on fire is a working city mama trying to learn how to set aside her expectations of perfection and embrace the reality of modern parenting.
  • Baby, Infant, and Toddler Wearing — Child wearing is part of Sarah at Nourished and Nurtured‘s parenting philosophy. In this post, Sarah describes benefits of child-wearing and gives tips for wearing babies, infants, and toddlers (even while pregnant).
  • First Year Reflections — As her daughter’s first birthday approaches, Holly at First Year Reflections reflects on how she and her husband settled into attachment parenting after initially doing what they thought everyone else did.
  • Making an allowance — Lauren at Hobo Mama welcomes a guest post from Sam about the unexpected lessons giving a four-year-old an allowance teaches the child — and the parent.
  • How to be a Lazy Parent and Still Raise Great Kids — Lisa at Granola Catholic talks about how being a Lazy Parent has helped her to raise Great Kids.
  • Philosophy in Practice — Laura at A Pug in the Kitchen shares how her heart shaped the parenting philosophy in her home.
  • What is Attachment Parenting Anyway? — Gaby at Tmuffin describes the challenges of putting a label on her parenting philosophy.
  • Of Parenting Styles — Jenny at Chronicles of a Nursing Mom talks about how she and her husband tailored various parenting styles to fit their own preferred parenting philosophy.
  • Moment by Moment Parenting — Amy at Peace 4 Parents encourages those who care for children (including herself) to explore and appreciate parenting moment-by-moment with clarity, intention, trust, and action.
  • Maintaining Spirituality in the Midst of Everyday Parenting, Marriage, and Life — Sarah at Nourished and Nurtured shares her perspective on finding opportunities for spiritual growth in every day life.
  • Parenting Philosophy — Lily, aka Witch Mom’s parenting philosophy is to raise child(ren) to be compassionate, loving, inquisitive, and questioning adults who can be trusted to make decisions for themselves in a way that avoids harming others.
  • Long Term — Rosemary at Rosmarinus Officinalis thinks about who she would like to see her daughter become — and what she can do now to lay a strong foundation for those hopes.
  • Connection, Communication, Compassion — She’s come a long way, baby! After dropping her career in favour of motherhood, Patti at Jazzy Mama discovered that building solid relationships was going to be her only parenting priority.
  • My Parenting Inspirations – Part 4 — Jennifer at Hybrid Rasta Mama looks at her biggest parenting inspiration and how that translates into her long-term parenting philosophy.
  • A Parenting Philosophy in One Word: Respect — Jenn at Monkey Butt Junction summarizes her parenting and relationship philosophy in one word: respect.
  • Knowledge and Instinct — Kat at Loving {Almost} Every Moment believes that knowledge and instinct are super important … as are love, encouragement and respect. It’s the ideal combo needed to raise happy and healthy children and in turn create meaningful relationships with them.
  • THRIVE!The Sparkle Mama wants to set a tone of confidence, abundance, and happiness in her home that will be the foundation for the rest of her daughter’s life.
  • On Children — “Your children are not your children,” say Kahlil Gibran and Hannah at Wild Parenting.
  • This One Life Together — Ariadne aka Mudpiemama shares her philosophy of parenting: living fully in the here and now and building the foundation for a happy and healthy life.
  • Enjoying life and planning for a bright future — Olivia at Write About Birth shares her most important parenting dilemmas and pours out her heart about past trauma and how healing made her a better parent.
  • My Parenting Philosophy: Unconditional and Natural Love — Charise at I Thought I Knew Mama shares what she has learned about her parenting philosophy from a year of following her instincts as a mama.
  • An open letter to my children — Isil at Smiling Like Sunshine writes an open letter to her children.
  • My Starter Kit for Unconditional Parenting — Sylvia at MaMammalia discusses her wish to raise a good person and summarizes some of the nontraditional practices she’s using with her toddler son in order to fulfill that wish.
  • Responsiveness — Sheila at A Gift Universe has many philosophies and goals, but what it all boils down to is responsiveness: listening to what her son wants and providing what he needs.
  • Tools for Creating Your Parenting Philosophy — Have you ever really thought about your parenting purpose? Knowing your long-term goals can help you parent with more intent in your daily interactions. Dionna at Code Name: Mama offers exercises and ideas to help you create your own parenting philosophy.
  • Be a Daisy — Becky at Old New Legacy philosophizes about individuality and how she thinks it’s important for her daughter’s growth.
  • What’s a Mama to Do? — Amyables at Toddler in Tow hopes that her dedication to compassionate parenting will keep her children from becoming too self-critical as adults.
  • grown-up anxieties. — Laura at Our Messy Messy Life explains her lone worry concerning her babies growing up.
  • Why I Used Montessori Principles in My Parenting Philosophy — Deb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now tells why she chose Montessori principles to help her now-adult children develop qualities she wanted to see in them as children and adults.
  • Parenting Philosophies & Planning for the FutureMomma Jorje considers that the future is maybe just a fringe benefit of doing what feels right now.
  • Not Just Getting Through — Rachael at The Variegated Life asks what truths she hopes to express even in the most commonplace interactions with her son.
  • Parenting Philosophy? Eh… — Ana at Pandamoly shares the philosophy (or lack thereof) being employed to (hopefully) raise a respectful, loving, and responsible child.
  • Parenting Philosophy: Being Present — Shannon at The Artful Mama discusses the changes her family has made to accommodate their parenting philosophy and to reflect their ideals as working parents.
  • Who They Will Be — Amanda at Let’s Take the Metro shares a short list of some qualities she hopes she is instilling in her children at this very moment.
  • Short Term vs. Long Term — Sheryl at Little Snowflakes recounts how long term parenting goals often get lost in the details of everyday life with two kids.
  • Parenting Philosophy: Practicing and Nurturing Peace — Terri at Child of the Nature Isle sets personal goals for developing greater peace.
  • Yama Niyama & the Red Pajama Mama — Part 1: The Yamas — In part 1 of a set of posts by Zoie at TouchstoneZ, Zoie guest posts at Natural Parents Network about how the Yoga Sutras provide a framework for her parenting philosophy.
  • Yama Niyama & the Red Pajama Mama — Part 2: The Niyamas — In part 2 of a set of posts by Zoie at TouchstoneZ, Zoie explores how the Niyamas (one of the eight limbs in traditional Yoga) help her maintain her parenting and life focus.
  • Our Sample Parenting Plan — Chante at My Natural Motherhood Journey shares hopes of who her children will become and parenting strategies she employs to get them there.
  • Philosophical Parenting: Letting Go — Jona at Life, Intertwined ponders the notion that there’s no right answer when it comes to parenting.
  • Unphilosophizing? — jessica at instead of institutions wonders about the usefulness of navel gazing.
  • Parenting Sensitively — Amy at Anktangle uses her sensitivity to mother her child in ways that both nurture and affirm.
  • how to nurture your relationships — Mrs Green at Little Green Blog believes that sometimes all kids need is a jolly good listening to …
  • Philosophy Of An Unnatural Parent — Dr. Sarah at Good Enough Mum sees parenting as a process of guiding her children to develop the skills they’ll need.
  • Life with a Challenging Kid: Hidden Blessings — Wendy at High Needs Attachment shares the challenges and joys of raising a high needs child.
  • Flying by the Seat of My Pants — Heather at Very Nearly Hippy has realized that she has no idea what she’s doing.

About fraurab

A Germanophile, who is figuring out how to build her strengths through improving her mind, body and soul.
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9 Responses to Be a daisy

  1. Pingback: Talents of the Heart

  2. Pingback: Talents of the Heart | Natural Parents Network

  3. Holly says:

    I really try to encourage my little to explore and find her own talents. I know there are things I’d love for her to get into (dance lessons or music), I have to remember that she is unique and will find her own path.

  4. Like Lauren,I also want to watch this film :)
    I love the way you write about celebrating her differences and knowing her talents and encouraging her at things you are not good at. I envision the same for my own kids.
    Beautiful post.

  5. Firstly, I really need to see Harold & Maude! Second, I really appreciate your thoughts about how talents are not so narrowly defined. I definitely value those traits in my loved ones that aren’t status-worthy but are still valuable interpersonal skills.

    And I like your idea to try new things yourself alongside her. That’s a good idea. I guess I’ll have to consider attempting a sport? Yipes…

  6. “I also want to make it a priority to not criticize my own looks or lack-of-talents in front of her.”
    I was really struck by the insight of this statement. I agree with you about the importance of modeling what we what to teach. I’ll be thinking more about individuality, talents, and adventure now, too!

  7. Amy E. Willa says:

    What a wonderful thought about wanting your child to discover her unique talents. Not just performance talents, but talents that are used for service and to love others. I think that we’re wired in our society to admire and nurture outward talents, but forget to shine light on talents of the heart. I adore how this comes through as one of your wishes for your child. Awesome. Beautiful. This absolutely speaks to me!

  8. Sheila says:

    This is beautiful. The freedom to be himself is one of the top things I would like to give my son. As his dad and I are both independent, offbeat people, hopefully he sees this in action.

  9. When I was thinking of the qualities I hope to see in Kieran when he is older, it never occurred to me to think about celebrating his differences or knowing his unique talents. They are definitely a part of what I envision, but it’s so nice to give voice to them with particularity. Thanks for making me think!

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