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Built Upon a Rock
Build a strong foundation with your daughter, Mom!

Some days, motherhood feels like running through sand in four-inch heels. Now, if you have a daughter, particularly a tween or teen, sand becomes quicksand as you watch your darling sprint barefoot toward the sea, seemingly miles ahead.

Want to plant your feet on solid ground? You need only refer to Matthew 7:25 in the Bible to remember that like a house built on rock rather than sand, you and your daughter need a foundation tough enough to weather any storm. Turn a sandy foundation rock solid through God, fun, and communication!

Pledges of promise

Authors Susie Shellenberger and Kathy Gowler impart the need for mothers to be intentional in bonding with their daughters. Their guide, Here for You: Creating a Mother-Daughter Bond That Lasts a Lifetime (Bethany House) calls for mothers and daughters to form covenants with each other and with God.

Shellenberger and Gowler believe a promise "to be a godly role model" is your first step toward a covenant with your daughter. In addition, praying for and with her and helping her recognize her God-given talents will demonstrate you are there for her. When she's mature enough to understand, your daughter can make a similar commitment to you, including vows to respect the role God has given you, to uphold honesty and to love you "NMW" (No Matter What).

For detailed information on this beautiful concept of forming covenants, pick up a copy of Here For You. Check out Shellenberger and Gowlers' website for additional mother/daughter titles.

It’s about time

Share snuggles and stones with your daughter from the beginning. Acquaint her with your favourite childhood books. Acquire two copies of a novel to read and discuss with your teen.

Chick Flick events need not wait until your daughter is old enough for more mature themes. Rent Annie, The Secret Garden, Pippi Longstocking, or old Shirley Temple films to share with younger girls.

Mix your own inexpensive body scrubs, facial creams, etc. Light candles, play soothing music and enjoy spa time at home in bathrobes! While tweens and teens might appreciate this activity more, even preschoolers love their feet rubbed with lotion.

Get started with recipes like those at

Hands-on fun

Creative ventures provide memorable experiences. Some activities lend themselves to preschool age and up. For example, crafting scrapbooks delight preschoolers no matter how they turn out. Now imagine the more elaborate designs you and your 17-year-old can dream up.

Redesign your daughter's bedroom together. Share the ideas, painting and shopping that goes along with it.

Whip up special family dinners as dual chefs, or plant a veggie garden that adds home-grown taste to summer meals.

Cynthia MacGregor offers sheer fun for mothers and their younger daughters in Come On, Mom! 75 Things For Mothers and Daughters To Do Together (Lobster Press). For the mom who says, "I'm just not creative!" this book will have you fooling everyone.

Talk it up

Most women don't have a problem talking — finding the time to chat is another matter entirely. Still, there are ways to keep the lines of mother/daughter communication open amid the rush of everyday life.

For starters, talk in the car, in checkout lines, and at night over a steamy beverage after your teen (hopefully) meets her curfew. Leave notes (important, sweet, funny, etc.) for each other in surprising places. Meet your daughter in her world: Use texting, or begin a blog to bring up topics and fire off feedback back and forth.

Plan an evening for the two of you or invite other mother/daughter pairs. Make it a slumber party at a hotel or someone's home. Indulge in snacks and girl-vital conversation. Perhaps pray for mothers and daughters battling rough times.

With an intentionally strong foundation put in place, the helpless infant daughter you first knew can become one of your best friends as an adult.

Kim Perrone enjoys writing inspirational parenting, family and human interest articles for publications such as Living Light News. She can be reached at Visit her website, Nuggets of Knowledge.

Originally published in Living Light News, May/June 2008.




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