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  • M. M. Siegfried "martijwis" - Sound Parenting TechniquesAs a retired special education teacher/therapist, I bought the Total Transformation Program to review its content and perhaps give it to my son and daughter-in-law. I have listened to the CD's and been impressed with the amount of very sound discipline advice that would be applicable for parents with smaller children (e.g., 4-10), preteens, and teens.
    Some of the more useful parenting concepts and descriptions of HOW to implement them included:
    1. Assume (parental) control--give simple directions and follow up (if necessary)with simple questions and matter of fact repetition of the directions such as "What are you supposed to be doing?" "Go do it" "My responsibility is to make dinner. Your responsibility is to do your homework" Give simple directions without speeches, lenghthy explanations, pleading, reasoning--easier said than done for most parents, but parents need to be more aware of their own overreactions and retrain themselves to be brief, firm, and consistent.
    2. Disconnect when disrespect occurs--cut off communication at point of disrespect through specific actions--walking away, stating in simple terms how the behavior is not living up to your expectations and what you're going to do about it in the short term--e.g., leave the room.
    3. Don't try to reason with child excessively or over-explain. This can give the rebellious child an excessive feeling of power and control over the parent. Specific scripts and examples are given about ways to talk in a brief, calm, authoratative (NOT unreasonable or authoratARIAN)tone with a clear message.
    4. Lessen overstimulation--have friends/siblings leave the area, turn off TV or game before briefly stating what expectations are for this instance. Many parents let background noise and images from TV, computer, games, friends, music stay on when trying to discipline the child--these influences and/or audiences can escalate the negative behavior of the child.
    5. Give positive feedback when appropriate and build the positive relationship with the child while setting strong boundaries for disrepect and other misbehavior and using the positive times together as teaching moments also.
    The program contains much practical content on ways for the parents to change THEMSELVES, which will impact their children's reactions OVER TIME. It is NOT a "quick fix" in all regards--there IS NO such thing--but parents should start to see very positive results relatively soon IF they stick with it. As the saying goes, "It may get worse before it gets better" if children sense that things are changing--again, once children learn the PARENTS are consistent in acting differently, they will respond and act diffently too.
    This program, as with most programs/books of its kind, would be most effective in a preventative way--that is, with younger children just starting to escalate conflicts with parents and others but, with LOTS of practice and consistency by the parents, will also be effective with older children and teens.
    This program will require quite a bit of study and practice by parents but it will be, in my opinion, time and effort well spent. In the long run, it will SAVE parents much time and aggravation to become more aware of and learn better skills to be more firm, detached, clear, and consistent. This program is thought-provoking and clear in its examples and scripts. Some of its content should be obvious to many and yet, this program serves to increase parents' awareness of when they fall into ineffective patterns so that they can change their parenting results through consistent practice of these vital skills.
    The "tough yet fairminded, East Coast" dialect of the author's voice on the CD's is itself empowering that parents can learn and USE these wise, "common sense" (which maybe we never pondered much previously) "street-smart" if you will, parenting skills. The program would also be very helpful for teachers or others working with youth.
  • B. Beach - A village health care handbook for Africa, not an EMT manual.Judging this book by its intended purpose it looks very good. Many things are basic like cleanliness, diet, don't smoke ciggarettes, etc. But I thought some were not so basic (and I couldn't find them in my boy scout manual). For example:

    Page 67: the possible medicines needed for injection (Appendicitis - ampicillin or penicillin with streptomycin, syphilis - benzathine penicillin, gonorrhea - kanamycin, etc).

    Page 154: six different vaccinations and the reccomended ages.

    Page 169: a flowchart to care for a person with acute diarrhea (when would you give them metonidazole, or co-trimoxazole, or ampicillin?).

    Page 180: treatment for pneumonia.

    Page 208-210 chart: 38 different types of skin problems which include onthocerciasis, vitiligo, and kwashiorkor.


    Also the basic stuff is so well laid out that I could see it helping a worker organize their thoughts along the lines of "What do I need to check?" or "What do I need to teach those who don't know the basics?". If you were in a remote situation, people were sick wanting you to help them NOW, and THERE WAS NO DOCTOR this manual would be very reassuring to have. Stress can make you forget basics. Or maybe if you were in the States and couldn't afford health insurance and wanted to be sure you were in true need before you went to the doctor who will bill you for walking in the door?
  • Pauline - People Tribute to Elizabeth TaylorI have always thought that Elizabeth Taylor was the most beautiful woman in the world. I admire how she stood by her friends even when it wasn't popular to do so. She lived a big life but that is what was expected of a big celebrity in those times. Great pictures of her life in this tribute.
  • J. Grimsley "JG" - We've had amazing results from this diet!This has been a lifechanging book for my husband, who has UC. Although it can take months to see results, we saw amazing results from this diet the very first week. We have remained on the diet for more than 6 months now and plan to stay on it permanently. The Specific Carb Diet is not an easy fix, however. To see results, you must remain 100% dedicated to the diet with absolutely no consumption of "illegal" foods. It did require a major change in our eating habits and my cooking habits. But it becomes much easier and just a way of life after a few weeks of adjustment. Thanks to this diet, my husband is medication-free for the first time in years! We are now eating healthier than ever. I strongly recommend this diet to anyone with a digestive disorder.