Disney ‘Planes’ giveaway: what’s your parenting style?

Feeding calves with my little girlsBecause I’m an INTJ— a fixer-upper who’s always game to look at new ways to improve life— I’m always watching other folks parent, wondering if bits and pieces of what they do might help me be a better mom to my own kids. I think that’s one of my strengths as a mom– my willingness to think about what could work better, and my longing to always be a better mom.

My self-analysis doesn’t stop at seeing my strengths– I’m also very aware of (at least some of) my weaknesses. I’m not especially touchy-feely. I usually reside in the land of logic, and don’t always relate patiently to a child awash in emotion. I’m consciously working to relate better to kids in the throes of right-brain emotion– trying to first acknowledge feelings and not immediately jump in with logical solutions. I’m also trying to get better at affirmation and praise. I do praise, and I never do so lightly: if I say you’re good at something, I really truly think you are good at it. But I’ve realized I need to get better at noticing qualities that aren’t naturally high on my radar, instead of always trying to hone the strengths I admire most.

My cousin and I were talking about that at camp a few weekends ago– how it is so easy to recognize the strengths that we’re biased towards, whether that be a studious nature, or work ethic, or musical interest, or whatever. But inherent in that bias can be a lack of appreciation for all sorts of other great qualities. Maybe a child has a tremendously creative brain, or great people skills, or a quirky sense of humor, or an interest in a subject that we’ve never much thought about before. We need to learn to admire kids for who they are. Dusty

A new Disney movie called Planes touches (lightly) on some of these parenting dilemmas. It tells the story of a little plane named Dusty who needed his friends to encourage him and help him learn how to soar. The folks at Disney asked me to think about the movie in relation to my own parenting style, and see if I could draw any parallels. 258px-Dottie_(Planes)


I definitely have a bit of Dottie in me. Dottie is a realist who encourages Dusty to see life as it really is. She doesn’t want Dusty to be discouraged by going for a dream that is out of his reach, and so she tries to speak truth into his life. 300px-Chug

But I also see a bit of Chug in me. Since Chug has dreams of his own to pursue, he understands the value of cheerleaders and encouragers. So it’s natural for him to support Dusty in following his own big dreams. That’s something I’ve always tried to do for my kids.

We’re big Cars fans at our house, and we’re looking forward to this new addition to the Cars Legacy. To celebrate the pending release of this movie, I’m giving away a $100 Fandango gift card.

For the chance to win, leave a comment below answering the question, “How do you challenge your children to follow their dreams?” (And yes, my comments are fixed!)


No duplicate comments.
You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:
a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post
b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the 
following unique term in your tweet message: “”#SweepstakesEntry””; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post”
c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post
d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.
This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me; otherwise a new winner will be selected.
The Official Rules are available here.
This sweepstakes runs from 7/15 – 8/12.

Be sure to visit the Disney Planes page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggers’ reviews and find more chances to win!


  1. amy pugmire says:
  2. I try really hard to encourage them in the things they are interested in and good at even if those things don’t appeal to me. I am amazed at how different each of my 6 kids are and how varied their talents, abilities and strengths are. I truly want to let them be who they are instead of fitting them into the mold of my strengths, preferences, and likes.

  3. Jacob LaFountaine says:

    I have no kids. I would let me just play and learn about interacting with others in sport and fun

  4. I take the time to listen to my son when he talks about his dreams and passions, even though he is just 7 years old. Even though some may not make sense, I encourage him, and remember that these are his dreams. 🙂

  5. Well, at this point my boys dreams for the future change daily but I actually think its the small stuff that makes more of a difference at this age. Encouraging them to finish the puzzle, fold the towel, stuff the envelope, etc. it sounds silly but I think I’m laying the foundation for helping them reach their larger life goals by helping them work for everyday things.

  6. My kids are so little — I hadn’t really even given much thought to this topic. Simply reading the comments has been interesting.

  7. we cheer them on really loudly

  8. Nicole Larsen says:

    I encourage my daughter to try new things–types of sports or activities and when I see she is really interested in something I push her to do the best she can at it and constantly be supportive of her in any decision she makes!

  9. Nicole Larsen says:
  10. Give them goals to work toward and celebrate their accomplishment!

  11. I don’t have any kids, but I have two little cousins who I try to help guide in the right direction. I try to present them with new opportunities and activities when I see them. I want to show them the many possibilities that are out there. I want them to reach for the stars.

  12. I have two nieces and I don’t try to encourage them the way a parent would. However, I do try to inspire them and open them up to new interests by taking them on day trips to local museums, concerts, and storytelling events at the library. We participate in arts and crafts classes once a month and bake together. I spend every Saturday morning and afternoon with them while my brother and his wife work so we try to make it a fun experience and I always applaud their efforts! Hopefully they feel comfortable enough to get excited over trying new things at other times! 🙂

  13. I ensure they’re following *their* dreams, not mine! I don’t expect them to be a Mini-Me (or a Mini-Dad!) and I actively discourage comparisons — each person is a unique gift to the world — I know just one of me is enough!

  14. I challenge them by encouraging them to try new things and stick with the old things when they aren’t so fun anymore!

  15. Letting them take whatever classes they want so they can learn a range of enjoyable lifelong skills. Everything from sewing to archery, art, swimming…they love it!

  16. Tracy L Davis says:

    I challenge my children by enrolling them in sports.

  17. Heather S says:

    I encourage them by doing things with them to help enrich their world, and by taking them places to experience new things! I also sign them up for classes to help them find new gifts and talents!

  18. Heather S says:
  19. Anastasia says:

    I challenge them by giving them steps to follow in order to reach their goals They want to go to the anime convention, then first they have to do chores to earn the money to get there! It’s not just about giving them work to do though It’s also about supporting and encouraging them and helping them find ways to get to where they want to go 🙂

  20. Anastasia says:
  21. Stephanie L. says:

    I encourage my daughter to keep trying even when she thinks it’s too difficult to go on. I let her know anything that is truely important to her is worth fighting for to press on.

  22. I teach my children to follow their dreams by being disciplined and finishing through things they have started. Nothing comes easy in life without a strong work ethics and self-discipline.

  23. I encourage my son to do what he wants and never push him to do anything he doesn’t want to do.
    Regarding Disney Planes I found a great site if any one would like to look at it. http://www.disneyplanes.org/

  24. I try to speak as positively as possible and not knock down their ideas.

    chambanachik at gmail dot com

  25. Deb Moretti says:

    I challenge them to follow their dreams by guiding them in their endeavors and giving them the necessary tools to be successful.

  26. Deb Moretti says:
  27. Jessie C. says:

    I encourage and support them to experience all they like, enjoy the process of trial and error. It was not always pleasant and smooth, however I do believe you got to give them chances to grow.
    tcarolinep at gmail dot com

  28. Jessie C. says:


  29. Instead of pushing them toward sports as most parents in our area do, I encourage them in what they are interested in. My son loves anything with wheels so we spend a lot of time riding bikes and at the skate park. I go to watch and cheer him on from the sidelines. My husband does BMX with him and they both ride and race motorcross. My daughter is interested in computers and movie making so I spend time helping with movie sets and my husband teaches her about the computer (he is in IT). I think the most important thing that I have come realize as a parent that it is very valuable for you to meet them where they are at even if it doesn’t fit the accepted “norm”.

  30. I tell them I’m proud of them. Encourage them to spend their time doing things at which they feel competent and valued

  31. i think the key is to have them try many things, whether it’s in the arts, sports, or intellectual pursuits, and see what they spark to or are good at–even if it’s not necessarily what you desire. it’s best that they find something that they’re passionate about, not what they feel pushed into doing!

    kolpin4680 at gmail dot com

  32. Terra Heck says:

    I challenge my children to follow their dreams by giving positive reinforcement, motivating them often, and enrolling them in classes or teams that help make those dreams become more a reality. Thanks.

  33. I tell them to give it their all and to try their best.

  34. I have two nieces and I try to inspire them and open them up to new interests by taking them on day trips to local museums, concerts, and storytelling events at the library. We participate in arts and crafts classes once a month and bake together. I spend every Saturday morning and afternoon with them while my brother and his wife work so we try to make it a fun experience and I always applaud their efforts! Hopefully they feel comfortable enough to get excited over trying new things at other times! 🙂

  35. Rebecca Graham says:

    I tell them if they set their mind to it, they can do it.

  36. Michele C says:

    Too finish string. I tell them it is not how you start the race but how you finish it.

  37. we try to expose them to different opportunities to find out what they like

  38. I’m a realist not a pollyanna. I see each of my kids for who they are and encourage their individual talents

  39. I always tell them that they can do anything they put their mind to

  40. I don’t have kids but I have 2 nieces and I try to encourage them to do the things they are passionate about and teach them to not give up on dreams.

  41. steve weber says:

    tell them to work hard, and to never give up and don’t listen to what anyone says.

  42. Diane baum says:

    We encourage them to try new, things, believe in themselves and to hold fast to their dreams.

  43. I give my daughter the freedom to try things in her own way and use her imagination.

  44. My kids are older, so the encouragement frequently consists of being a sounding board as they think out pros and cons, ins and outs of different things. I sometimes point out things they don’t seem to have considered, but it is pretty self-directed by now.

  45. Jennifer says:

    I sit with my kids once a month to make a schedule, and I love when they have tons of feedback! IT’s something to look forward to every month, even if it is as small as a trip to the library or learning a new sport!
    I also show my kids that hard work pays off, my husband and I are in the process of opening our own business, so the kids really see how things can happen if you really try!