Blood Doesn’t Make Family

Family. Why have one, right? I’ve actually heard from several teens that “family is overrated.” Most of these people are teens coming from broken families — as if only blood makes family.
 
Blood doesn’t make family. Blood relations can hurt you as much as any stranger.
True family is a person or group of people that supports you and cares for you. They ask what’s wrong. They help you better yourself and feel accepted and loved. Family is also the people who won’t put up with your crap, but rather, will help you raise yourself to be a better you. If you’re about to do something stupid, family will tell you you’re acting stupid. If you’re being dangerous, they will help you find a safer way to live. Family won’t ever tell you to stay the same, to continue hurting yourself, to skip school, or that your feelings don’t matter.
 
Being a kid is hard. You’re learning emotions and creating bonds with people that help mold you into the person you will become. Kids are realizing that the world is full of rules at school, rules at home — rules that keep them safe and in the end, HAPPY. Action and consequence is big and having responsible family surrounding kids will keep them safe as they test their boundaries. After all, that’s what childhood is about — testing boundaries and exploring life and themselves.
 
Imagine what life is like with no family to help kids. They go through a slew of emotions with no one to help them understand what it means.
Why are you angry? Let’s talk and find out how we can help.
Why are you sad? Tell me, and I’ll find every way to make you smile again.
Are you sick? Let me tend to you until you’re healthy.
Are you scared? Let me grab a bat, and we’ll walk through the dark together.
 
Being a teen is harder. You’re finding out that not only are there rules, but there are laws that must be followed. Laws that can either help you in life, or ruin you. Laws to go to school. Laws to work. Laws to live. A responsible family will help you understand these laws and learn how to obtain your greatest advantages through them for college, and then living on your own. Family will help you be the member of society that will survive, love, and enjoy your life.
 
Emotions for teens turn into hell. You’re learning the difference between love and lust. Obsession and acceptance. The teen years are crucial when it comes to relationships. You can’t alway see clearly when infatuation gets the best of you. Your actions in teen years can affect your entire life, either positively or negatively…but it is only you that can make your decision. At this point, parents can only do so much. Living by example, and taking time to sit with their teen(s) can change the path of life that teen decides to walk.
True family will push you to do better. To stay in school and see how important your grades actually are. To keep positive friends, because surrounding yourself with good people will drive you to be a good person, and positivity = happiness. Being surrounded by people who refuse to see the reality of the world only condemns you to suffering. Negativity = unhappiness and suffering.
 
Reality, when it comes to survival in this day and age, is crucial. Imagination and adventure in kids/teens (and even other adults), should be raised up, admired, and encouraged…but not to the point of denying the reality of the world around you. Not to the point where you’re unable to take care of yourself and are forced to live off of the government or charity.
 
To survive in the world, you need to make money. To make money, you need work. To work, you need a solid job. For a solid job, you almost always need a degree. For a degree, you need a college education. To get into a good college, you need to have good grades in high school. It’s all connected, and a true family will help you stay on the right road to success.
 
Nowhere does blood relation come into this.
A true parent will pour their heart and love into a child, related or not.
 
In my own experience, I felt the child-parent bond with my friends’ parents. Why? Because they would keep me safe while I was with them. They would listen to me if I had something to say. I would have dinner with them. I would be treated as their own kid. Did that make them my mother or father? Not necessarily, but it made them family in my heart. People I genuinely felt cared about me and who I grew to genuinely care for.
 
When it comes down to it, it’s the people who have left their mark on your life who you will consider family. When you’re a kid/teen, you may not understand it yet… but you can understand it if it’s shown to you. Good people will help you see good things. Bad people will fill your heart and mind with bad things.
 
Just a thought.

14292365_125245531263962_3218450708591990267_nDiana, AKA the Goblin Queen, is a fantasy children’s author, lifestyle blogger, and mother-figure-friend to nine kids. Connect on Instagram and Twitter to keep up with Goblin Queen’s shenanigans!
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Talking to Your Kids

Parents get nervous about the world. It’s natural for us to worry about our kids and how they’ll find their way. Most moms that have opened up about this seem to have gone the route of sheltering their kid(s). It’s easier that way, I suppose, but only for a few short years.

You can’t shelter your loved ones from the world forever. They will wake up one day and be offered drugs or alcohol. They will learn one day that there are other religions besides the one you live by. Your kids will learn one day about sex, porn, kidnappers, rapists, etc. There is no protecting them from everything, forever.

When Goblin #1 was 8 years old, she asked about periods…so, I told her about periods — and sex. I explained it all to her in the biological terms. She didn’t get it all the first time, but we went through it all again less than a year later. She then moved on. Within two weeks, the other moms at the church asked me why I bothered telling her about these things and I found that to be the most ridiculous question ever! Because girls a couple years older than her are starting periods…and because it’s a part of life! Just like giving birth. Just like aging. Just like death. Our kids will face it all, and we need to have them prepared for it.

You can’t protect your kids from the world, but you can prepare them for it.

Talk to your kids…talk about everything. Don’t let them sit in the dark.


14292365_125245531263962_3218450708591990267_nDiana, AKA the Goblin Queen, is a fantasy children’s author, lifestyle blogger, and mother-figure-friend to nine kids. Connect on Instagram and Twitter to keep up with Goblin Queen’s shenanigans!

Life Lessons in Harry Potter

I find it strange there are still many people – particularly those of the Christian faith – who refuse to allow their children to read Harry Potter. Knowing that we allow our kids to read the books, I was asked by a woman at a church, “aren’t the Harry Potter books full of recipes for spells? Doesn’t it teach kids how to make potions and put curses on people?”

My response was a hearty laugh, followed by a resounding, “no!”

The Harry Potter books are not manuals for witchcraft but rather, a long, heartfelt story of friendship, adventure, and overcoming adversity. It’s about growing up and seeing the dark in the world as well as the light and making the right decisions when everything seems against you.

Our ten year old is a massive Harry Potter fan. She started the books very early on and has seen most of the movies — and we love it. She spends hours to days curled up with a book! A book full of life lessons even adults can learn from.

  1. You Can’t Judge a Book by It’s Cover – or rather, a person by their looks.
  • We meet Hagrid, a massive mess of a giant who is actually one of the most kind, caring, and gentle characters of the book.
  • There’s Professor Snape who is dark, scary, and mean, but willing to do anything for his love. You don’t truly know him until he tells his story.
  • The older woman who is pretty in pink and has perfect curls…well, you’ll want her dead more than the Dark Lord Voldemort.

2. Stand Up For Yourself.

  • The world is full of people who will take advantage of you if you’re too nice, too small, too nerdy, too anything. There are bullies of every design and they will do what they can to tear you down.
  • Evil/negativity comes in many forms and you need to be confident in yourself and to step up, whether it be to your friends, enemies of your friends, or even a critical family member.

3. Money Isn’t Everything

  • We have Ron Weasley who is a part of a large family who doesn’t have a whole lot. He wears hand-me-downs and uses his brother’s old books. His life, though, was built on a foundation of a loving and happy family. He lives a good life with people around him who love him to death. Harry, on the flip side, is the richest boy his age, but not even rolling in money can get him what he’s always wanted – his parents.
  • Fortunately, DNA doesn’t make family, and Harry learns that those who love him, care for him, and support him are his true family.

4. There is Always Hope

  • No matter the circumstances, everything can get better! If you’re breathing, you have the strength. If your brain is alive, you have the wisdom. If your heart is beating, you have the spirit. The bad can always be put aside. Fears can be overcome. Life can restart.

5. A Good Heart is Everything

  • Throughout the books, the characters often sacrifice something for a friend. A kind heart will earn you kindness from strangers or once-enemies, and true-to-heart love and loyalty.
  • Choosing to bully or belittle someone only proves the lack of heart one has and it will earn nothing but enemies and disloyalty.

As parents, we want our children to learn valuable life lessons, and some of those lessons are better received from favorite, fictional characters than from the parents (kids are “smarter” than their parents these days, right?). Note the sarcasm. Stories can teach lessons to our kids. It is the parents’ job to give books the benefit of the doubt. If you find yourself concerned about a book’s content, then research it.


14292365_125245531263962_3218450708591990267_nDiana, AKA the Goblin Queen, is a fantasy children’s author, lifestyle blogger, and mother-figure-friend to nine kids. Connect on Instagramand Twitter to keep up with Goblin Queen’s shenanigans!

Vacations Are Worth It

Parents enjoy lying to themselves. I am convinced these lies help anchor us in some deluded form of reality so we may survive our children. Let me share an example. One of the most magnificent stories parents tell involves the false joy we might experience on a future vacation. I mean, as parents, we are practically obligated to teach our children about the ways of the world. And what better way is there to educate the little Einsteins than by taking them on a real-life adventure!

So, for weeks, we plot, scheme, and strategize an immaculate trip that the whole family will love. We find the most amazing places with the most incredible sites, which will indubitably please even the most brooding member of the household. When the day finally arrives with all our ‘i’s dotted and ‘t’s crossed, we pile into the family-mobile and take off into the wild unknown.

bb37ff51248e6eea8aa53fbb9296c2c5How long does it take before you are screaming like Ron Weasley’s mother into the backseat of your car? 1 hour? 2 hours? Did you actually make it 3 hours? I envy you.

When you first set off on the adventure, you play it cool. You are a calm, rational human being, still holding the image of lucid waters and trees ruffled by a delicate breeze. You hear the mirth and merriment of a family bonding over the simplicities of life. You speak to your children, sharing with them your make-believe visions of the future, crossing your fingers that they can dream the same dream that you dream.

AND THEN IT CRUMBLES.

After a few moments, the basic bedlam in the back accelerates to absolute anarchy. One child is touching another. And this child doesn’t like how the other is looking at them. For the love of hedgehogs, seatbelts are off. And we have entered bout one of the title fight; yes, they are actually swinging at each other. Children are crying and bruises are forming. What do you mean someone purposefully spit on the cherished stuffed animal? And who broke the electronic device in the first fifteen minutes? We barely have left the house! You ripped paper to shreds! Really?! Where did you even find paper to tear into miniscule pieces and why did you shove them in the cup holder and then try to make them float in your spilt drink?

We are pulling this car over! We might even turn it around…actually, we know that is another lie. Because we have invested way too much time and energy into planning this venture into hell, and we will—by any means necessary—go forth and spend money we don’t have and these little monsters will LOVE us for it!

811468-f4679530-dbd6-11e3-917f-8bca2ad8cf46But they don’t care. They don’t have the brain development to understand our sacrifice, give adequate thanks, or process our adult emotional state. As parents, we have lost all sense of ourselves before we have made it to the first destination. Cars are whipping by us on the highway, the scenery has completely changed (which the kids haven’t noticed and we have barely enjoyed), everyone is screaming of hunger or the need for a toilet…Our senses are completely haywire. We might as well be at war with the Hulk leading the warpath. All the while, we are trying to balance the meaning of unconditional love with the measure of our wits, and failing miserably. We are delirious. We are doubtful. We are depressed. The only thing we can be sure of is that we have nosedived this whole parenting thing, and next vacation will consist of drawn curtains and Harry Potter marathons.

Another lie. Because—hey—next year, the child seems more mature. Right?

The real question is what does a parent do with these vacations and the lies that surround them? The answer is EMBRACE THEM. I guarantee you that the struggle is worth every moment. When your child grows up, they will be thankful for the opportunity you gave them, they will remember the wondrous vacation, and if lucky, they will suffer with your grandchildren in a very similar way.


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Joshua Robertson is the Goblin King, a proud millennial father of nine children. A graduate of Norwich High School, Robertson attended Wichita State University where he received his Masters in Social Work with minors in Psychology and Sociology.His bestselling novel, Melkorka, the first in The Kaelandur Series, was released in 2015. Known most for his Thrice Nine Legends Saga, Robertson enjoys and ever-expanding and extremely loyal following of readers. He counts R.A. Salvatore and J.R.R. Tolkien among his literary influences.

Mr. Sinister Confirmed for Wolverine 3

250px-oldmanloganWolverine 3, titled Logan [from what we assume is in reference to Old-Man Logan], will be Hugh Jackman’s ninth and last appearance as the title character. The movie is expected to be in theaters on March 3, 2017.

Some pretty huge Marvel news regarding Logan was released last month. The post scene credits from X-Men: Apocalypse had revealed the appearance of ‘Essex Corp’, which was major for any Marvel fans, but the audio commentry track confirmed what many had expected. Essex Corp belongs to one of the most powerful villains the X-Men have encountered, Mister Sinister, and so we can only expect to see him play a major role in the upcoming film. YES!

Now, with Wolverine’s former running buddies from Weapon X and The Reavers making an appearance in Logan, we cannot say how much we will see of Mister Sinister. We know Mister Sinister had a hand in the creation of X-23, so the link between all these confirmations makes complete sense. But Mister Sinister is HUGE to finally bring into the Marvel Universe. He aids in the creation of the time-traveling mutant, Cable [who has been confirmed for Deadpool 2], maintains a role in the storyline of Gambit, and, like I said, proves to be one of the toughest enemies for the X-Men. Even with this being Hugh Jackman’s final role, we should expect some awesome advancements in the Marvel Universe.

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I wonder if they will include the scene from House of M (comic) when the dimension-hopping Deadpool faces Mister Sinister? Hey! We could all use a cameo from Ryan Reynolds in Logan.


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Joshua Robertson is the Goblin King, a proud millennial father of nine children. A graduate of Norwich High School, Robertson attended Wichita State University where he received his Masters in Social Work with minors in Psychology and Sociology.His bestselling novel, Melkorka, the first in The Kaelandur Series, was released in 2015. Known most for his Thrice Nine Legends Saga, Robertson enjoys and ever-expanding and extremely loyal following of readers. He counts R.A. Salvatore and J.R.R. Tolkien among his literary influences.

 

 

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales

downloadThe fantasy swashbuckling film saga is back with Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales to be released on May 26, 2017. The line-up of cast members is promising with Johnny Depp, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush, & Kevin McNally all returning to the screen. I have to say I am a bit saddened that Kiera Knightly will not return to the franchise, but she has evidently moved on with other adventures.

Still, with six years since the last release, the fifth video is finally underway and I cannot tell you how excited I am. There have been talks of this film since 2011 after  On Stranger Tides, but with the many script issues, the film kept getting pushed back. Now, shot exclusively in Australia, Dead Men Tell No Tales is ramping up to be one of the best in the series.

Check out the Teaser Trailer released yesterday!


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Joshua Robertson is the Goblin King, a proud millennial father of nine children. A graduate of Norwich High School, Robertson attended Wichita State University where he received his Masters in Social Work with minors in Psychology and Sociology.His bestselling novel, Melkorka, the first in The Kaelandur Series, was released in 2015. Known most for his Thrice Nine Legends Saga, Robertson enjoys and ever-expanding and extremely loyal following of readers. He counts R.A. Salvatore and J.R.R. Tolkien among his literary influences.

Dear Dads: Be Involved

The role of being a father is considerably more layered and multi-dimensional than the stereotypes suggest. Spend half a day with first-time, expecting fathers and you will witness an emotional roller coaster somewhere between a Hulk rage, the last moments of tystwoThe Dark Knight, and Iron Man 3 [you know, where RDJ wants his tuna sandwich]. Seriously, the changes that men go through when approaching fatherhood, and after, is something worthy of scientific analysis. Luckily, many scientists have taken the challenge. For instance, the University of Michigan found—similarly to mothers—dads experience many hormonal changes during the pregnancy too. For any who have been a father with sleepless nights, hunger cravings, and fog-brained before the baby was born know this truth! I personally have witnessed this first hand, and second hand, and probably third hand, if there is such a thing.

Let me explain. For the last two years, I taught a Dad’s Class, and I am telling you that men have hundreds of questions, legitimate concerns, and a jumbled web of emotions surrounding the concept of being called “dad”. They are trying to balance society’s expectations, the expectation of their family and the in-laws, maintain some sense of themselves, keep their wife happy, their boss happy, their friends happy…I could keep going. I cannot remember a session where the men kept their mouths shut. In fact, most men asked after the class for more materials to help them prepare for fatherhood. Why don’t we hear about this? Sadly, men frequently are not often given a platform to express their feelings during this strange transmutation, leaving them to bottle it up or to push it under the rug.

downloadWait! Men express emotions? Sounds like I am pitching a Tom Sawyer scheme, doesn’t it? But, men do express their feelings…when they feel safe to speak and are validated, much like anyone else. I have worked with hundreds of grown, adult men and they are quite capable of telling you how they feel, what they think, and how the two do not always match up. The issue surrounding the stereotypical, silent male runs much deeper than men just being men. Many times, I have spoken with men who are wrestling with feelings of guilt and shame in the home. These vulnerable emotions surround a wide variety of issues. For example, a study at Kansas State University, in 2014, found that men experienced parental guilt for taking time to engage in sports activities or exercise, even more so than mothers. But I am speaking about something far different.

Good fathers provide, nurture, and guide. This realization scares the color right out of a man’s hair. In my personal opinion, I believe this is because—more likely than not—the man did not have fatherhood modeled for him by his own father. Hear me out. One out of three children grow up in homes without their biological fathers, and many of those have little contact or association with their dad. Without an example, anyone can imagine why boys-turned-to-men may have a lot of questions about what it means to be a father.

download-2Let’s add another log to the fire. Many interpersonal skills are lost when a father is not readily available to their children. Fathers play differently with their children, teaching kids how to regulate their feelings and behavior. Fathers encourage children to take more risks than mothers to let them face their social environments. Fathers are instinctively more skilled at monitoring their children when regarding interactions with peers and other adults. A father’s discipline techniques will often be more confrontational, offering a diverse lesson from mothers in the importance of authority. None of these findings in research undermine the overall value of the mother, or the tenacity of single-parenting mothers. Mothers skillsets compliment the child in an entirely different way. The rhetoric is to provide rational for how fathers give value to their children. For new fathers who have not had fathers, these may be foreign concepts when parenting their own children. Hence, the turmoil of feelings we have discovered in new fathers.

I cannot express the importance of helping new fathers grasp the fundamental importance of being an active father, even when you and the mother are no longer living together. In 2015, the University of North Carolina reported that although we inherit equal amounts of genetic mutations from our parents, we actually use more of the DNA from our fathers. But the significance of being a dad goes far beyond our genetics. From the birthing room to changing diapers to cuddling with their child to tossing ball in the backyard, men must understand that we fulfill a very unique role for our son or daughter. Being an involved dad equals successful children. Studies have shown that kids who have fathers actively participating in their life are better problem-solvers, have higher IQs, perform better academically, to be more tolerant and understanding, and even have a greater chance of long-term successful marriages in adult life.

We often hear mothers speaking about motherhood. Bottom line, dads, we have to be willing to do the same.


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Joshua Robertson is the Goblin King, a proud millennial father of nine children. A graduate of Norwich High School, Robertson attended Wichita State University where he received his Masters in Social Work with minors in Psychology and Sociology.His bestselling novel, Melkorka, the first in The Kaelandur Series, was released in 2015. Known most for his Thrice Nine Legends Saga, Robertson enjoys and ever-expanding and extremely loyal following of readers. He counts R.A. Salvatore and J.R.R. Tolkien among his literary influences.

Millennial Fatherhood

A lot has changed over the years when it comes to fatherhood. This video helps us understand why millennial fathers are so different from the fathers before us.


13494936_10154825411090931_1836080843667206628_nJoshua Robertson is the Goblin King, a proud millennial father of nine children. A graduate of Norwich High School, Robertson attended Wichita State University where he received his Masters in Social Work with minors in Psychology and Sociology.His bestselling novel, Melkorka, the first in The Kaelandur Series, was released in 2015. Known most for his Thrice Nine Legends Saga, Robertson enjoys and ever-expanding and extremely loyal following of readers. He counts R.A. Salvatore and J.R.R. Tolkien among his literary influences.