Like a fine wine! my title this week is telling!

I have been thinking this week about a publication I picked up last week called "Wine and Spirits". It's a magazine I like to get once in a while, and this last issue was all about the best 100 wines in California and France and a few other world wine making regions.

I began to browse through the list of all the wines listed and started to think...I wonder what makes each of these wines great and how each of these winemakers accomplished creating such a great bottle of wine. My mind wandered, as it is often prone to do, and I thought..hmmm this reminds me of parenting!

Each winemaker begins with nothing except a vine. He has to decide where to plant it. What type of soil to plant the vine in. The quantity of water and sun exposure the vine needs. He has to know when to prune the vine to cut off the parts he thinks will compromise the grape, and finally decide when to harvest the grapes that the vine has produced!

Now...isn't that a great metaphor for parenting?? ( If my daughter, who is an english teacher reads this, she may admonish me if I have used the wrong english concept!) When we are brand new parents and get presented with this beautiful new baby, we have all the same choices to make as the winemaker does. We have to decide where and how and what to do to help this brand new child become an excellent person!

I think that being a great parent is just like being a great winemaker! We have to decide what this particular vintage of child needs! Some need lots of sun, some need lots of rain, some need extra pruning, and some even need to be left alone a lot to thrive. We, as the parents , like the winemaker, have to decide, and then provide precisely what each child needs. Some children need lots of attention. Some children need extra reassurance. Some children need tight parameters. Some children need gentle guidance. Some children need more time alone. All children need LOTS of love

As any parent who has more than one child knows, each one is different! It doesn't matter that they came from the same parents, each one has different needs, much the same as each newly planted season of grapes. The requirements to produce a great wine change each year. Each vintage of wine asks the winemaker to be an artist as well as a scientist. Knowing what the basic requirements of making wine are, the great winemakers know something else. They know that to create an excellent bottle they must also know the art of winemaking, the subtle nuances needed to manipulate and nurture their vines just right so they produce the exquisite grapes needed to create a wonderful bottle of wine.

Great parents need to do the same things. They need to know what the basic requirements are for caring for their children, and then like a great winemaker, know the art of parenting. They need to know how to nurture, care for and provide just the right ingredients each of their children need. When you do that, imagine how wonderfully each of your children will grow!

Who knows, maybe one day your own efforts could be rewarded. Your children may be highlighted in national publications, or recognized in school district publications, or begin making their own films.. and then, best of all, thank you for helping them get there!

Until next time,