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Heather is the Author, Professor (of Family Psychology) and Mother behind the blog, Family Volley. Family Volley is a wonderful blog designed to help us build strong relationships within our families. It’s a great resource for anyone, and I love that Heather tries to practice what she “preaches” in the classroom at home. And not always with perfect results. Heather is due to give birth to child number 4 any day now, so be sure to wish her well!
How did you start blogging?
Over the last couple years, my husband and I had continually discussed the key principles I teach my college students, and how we implement them into our own family. He repeatedly suggested I write a book.
I too had been feeling an urgency to share my knowledge with a bigger audience outside the classroom. To satisfy my urgent desire to share, I started Family Volley.
Although setting up the blog wasn’t too hard, settling on a name was the challenge. My husband and I would lie in bed at night throwing around ideas that we felt would fit the blog’s content and my personality. Late one night we laughed hysterically as he suggested “Once Busty”. A tribute to the time I spent nursing our three children. Knowing my parents and students would be reading, I couldn’t bring myself to use it.
I feel very blessed to have been able to study the fundamental principles that help marriages and families become strong, and help us with raising children and developing relationships. The principles are things I use and teach every day. I knew others would benefit also. So I decided to expand the classroom. That is how Family Volley came to be.
What can readers expect when visiting your blog?
The great thing about Family Volley is that everyone has a family, so no matter your age or station in life, the content applies to all of us. When readers visit Family Volley they can expect to find honest and straightforward answers to the toughest life, parenting and family questions. From raising children, grand parenting, friendships, conflict management. temper tantrums, bullying, toilet training, and marital relationships. Readers email me with questions and I provide solutions and ideas to help them (The Advice Tab will link you to all of them).
Readers will also find my personal thoughts and reflections. Struggles and all.
Family Volley is also loaded with unique and fun activities and games to do with your family. Every Friday a new game or activity is featured (All the activities can be found under the FAMILY FUN FRIDAY tag).
How do you see your blog in 5 years?
As long as Family Volley is helping one person, then it is worth continuing. I hope Family Volley will continue to grow and in 5 years has helped thousands of parents, families, and individuals become stronger. I would also like to have found more ways to get the information that I share with my family, students, and readers, out to an even larger audience. I would love for the site to be a go-to-spot for all things family.
You are a professor in real life. Tell us about juggling teaching, a family and blogging?
Being a mother of three (almost 4), a wife, a professor, and blogging, brings challenges. We are always working to keep balance and prioritize. We hear it often, but time management really is important. We focus on not over scheduling ourselves, or our children. We try to keep our family life intentional. Focusing on creating rituals and meaningful interactions. Morning and evening rituals keep us connected and bonded even when life is extra crazy.
When I started Family Volley I could see that it had the potential to take over my life. It was important to me, but not more important than the people I love. To make it all work, I try to never let it come before my husband and kids, and I try to set reasonable expectations for the blog and its growth. I set aside time in the morning before anyone is out of bed to write and respond to emails. I also make sure I go to bed at the same time as my husband each night.
What advice can you give us about choices that we can make to help our families be successful and help make “a better tomorrow”?
One of the best choices we can make to help our families be successful and make a “better tomorrow” is to be INTENTIONAL. As parents, we need to have a working plan for our families.
Imagine putting your family in a canoe. If we don’t steer our canoe, then our families are blown around by the winds and pushed and pulled by the currents. Our families will quickly find ourselves overturned, off course, or washed up on the banks.
Instead, We have to put our oars in the water and INTENTIONALLY paddle ourselves where we want to go. Whatever type of family we want, we have to make. Our willingness to be intentional is the difference between success and failure, with our children, with our spouses and with life.
3 FAVORITE BLOG POSTS:
Bullying-Consider This: Great advice about what to do when your child gets bullied.
Don’t Mess With Holiday Traditions: Ways to overcome holiday tradition frustration.
Family Fun Friday-Battle Chairs: You’ll definitely want to try this family game out!
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