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Amy Jewett Sampson: Mamma Mania

Amy Jewett Sampson is a public relations professional and worked as spokesperson and senior policy advisor to Colorado’s 40th Governor, Gov. Bill Owens.  Amy and her husband Larry were married ten years before they had their first child.  They tried every type of infertility treatment, but were unsuccessful.  Through prayer Amy and Larry decided to start the adoption process.  

About a year into the adoption (and after five years of unsuccessful fertility treatments), the Sampsons were able to conceive on their own.  They felt that God was still leading them to adopt even though they were pregnant.  Amy gave birth to a daughter, Lauren, and six months later they went to China to adopt their daughter, Audra who is the oldest; she is six months older than Lauren.   Amy became pregnant again, and a year to the day they adopted Audra from China, their son Joshua was born.  In less than two years, Amy and Larry had three young children.  Amy says she wouldn’t have chosen to plan her family the way it turned out to be, but she wouldn’t have it any other way.

The way Amy’s family came about is not uncommon.  The number of women having or adopting babies in multiples, for reasons like successful fertility treatments or pressure from their biological clocks, is increasing.  Amy calls it the “mothering multiples phenomenon.”   It was stressful for Amy to go from the working world to being the mother of three children under the age of five.  There really weren’t any resources available to her, so she had to learn on her own.  For example, as a new mom, she was exhausted.  Amy would carve out time for herself daily, usually before the children would wake up, and read the Bible.  It would help her get through the day.  She learned that she needed to take care of herself and stay spiritually filled.  A rested mom is a good mom.  She’s learned more tips that empower mothers to run defense among three or more young children.  Most parents want to know about potty training (50 percent of her questions), how to deal with tantrums, and getting children to sleep (especially infants).

If you don’t remember anything else, Amy says these 3 principles will help you have happier, less stressful
moments with your children:

1) Keep children on a schedule.  Little children thrive on familiarity and repetition.  Establishing set times for daily activities give stability to children’s’ lives.  This will create a sense of stability and calmness for them.

2) Only ask a child to do something once before giving a consequence.  Consistency and consequence is the key.  Counting to “3” is Amy’s limit.  When asking her children to do something, she has them respond, “Yes, mommy,” to make sure that they heard her and that everything is clear. 

3) Allow your children to have quiet time at least once a day.   This principle is foundational to most of the tips in the book.  If you really ingrain in kids alone time it will help with wake up, bed time, homework, etc. and it will teach them to be content in being alone.  It also helps with handling tantrums, gets their emotions under control, helps with concentration skills and focus, and calming for kids to help stop stimulation.  It’s important to teach that it is not a punishment.

Amy took three to four years off to be a full time mom and has been back to work as a consultant for the last two years.  She can adjust her schedule to her children’s schedule.   Her children are in school and she still keeps them on a schedule, which stays pretty consistent.  Alone time/nap time has turned to quiet time and homework time.  It has given the children a sense of stability and it still works.  The Sampsons are learning Mandarin Chinese.

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