By Jean Tracy
Kids Discuss 
NW Parenting expert
This parenting secret comes from Jeni. Jeni is a wonderful wife, mother and working mom. In fact, Jeni is married to my son, Brian. They have 2 children. A 6- year-old and a 2-year-old. Here’s Jeni’s tip.
Parenting Secret: Effective Parents Follow Through
“Follow through on both rewards and punishments. Empty promises and threats don’t achieve anything.”
Years ago when my sons, Brian and Scott, were little, I learned why following through was so important. We’d go grocery shopping and the first thing they’d ask as we entered the store was, “Can we have some gum from the gum ball machine?
I’d smile and say, “Let’s see how you behave.” They knew if they behaved they’d get a gum ball. If I forgot about the gum balls when leaving the store, they’d remind me. That told me that images of gum balls danced in their heads while we shopped. The gum balls were important to them.
Brian and Scott taught me that I needed to follow through. I learned that following through motivated them to behave because they knew they could trust me to do what I promised.