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Debbie Preece


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As a frustrated mom with high-strung and strong-willed children, I began feeling the extraordinary pressure of raising children. I had lost the joy in Motherhood. I realized I didn't have the coping skills or the tools necessary to be a happy mommy, but rather felt I was in the Combat Zone with missiles of sarcasm and anti-mom protests falling all around me! I was ready to call it quits when out of frustrated desperation, I knelt in prayer to ask for help one last time. What resulted was a life-changing experience that brought happy faces to all in the family. I began feeling success in raising my children and joy in Motherhood. Within two weeks, they began calling me: The best Mom in the whole world! After all the children were raised, I wrote From Combat Zone to Love at Home: The Happy Face Token System. This is a Kid-Tested, Mom-Approved discipline, self-motivation, and character development family program that has helped frustrated parents worldwide for 25 years. I call it the ultimate parenting survival manual for frustrated parents and it comes with a parenting survival kit CD with print ready charts as well as a parenting class that discusses the book and program.

Experience in the area

As I made beds and fixed meals for the most wonderful family in the whole world, I honestly expected the "golden rule" to work. I fully expected the children to say, thanks for making my bed, what can I do for you?! Instead, it seemed to create a combat zone of thoughtless, selfish and demanding children. Who were these insurgents infiltrating my happy mother domicile? What was I doing wrong? I wanted to find my foxhole and hide. After heavenly intervention, The Happy Face Token System resulted in 1983. It was a new battle plan that virtually guaranteed my survival and that of my family. This simple, but counterintuitive family plan seemed to work as I needed it to, according to my moods, while providing a built-in consistency factor. Within two weeks,a truce had been accepted as the children gave willing, first-time compliance with this most remarkable interactive parenting tool. Happy children responded with; "What can I do for you Mommy? May I set the table? You’re the BEST MOMMY IN THE WHOLE WORLD!"


Cub Scouts, church groups, community service, has served as a Brownie and Girl Scout leader.

Publications review: "When I read in the book that Debbie's children would say things like, "You're the best Mommy in the whole world!" I, quite frankly, did not believe that would EVER happen for me. Well, I was definitely wrong. It has happened many times already and I look forward to many more!I'm more relaxed in my roles and duty as Mama and have begun to truly love being a Mom! I'm a homeschooling Mama, too... and I no longer desire time alone as I used to. I would prefer to be among my children than anywhere else I can think of! This is probably not completely a result of the book, but the book and the principles I have applied from it with my children are certainly helping me make quantum leaps in my own development and in teaching/character training of my children! Tori F 5.0 out of 5 stars Risk Free Way to Peace, September 19, 2011 By WomanNShoe - See all my reviews This review is from: From Combat Zone to Love At Home: The Happy Face Token System (Paperback) We really loved using the token system and it couldn't have come at a better time. I'm the mom of 7 with 6 children still living at home. This system has been a huge blessing in curbing arguments and slothfulness. The earning of tokens help children work towards a goal and feel a sense of accomplishment by achievement. We used poker chips with each color representing a different value. There is a list posted on our family bulletin board with some of the redemption rewards and their token values. Now for Easter egg hunts, the children ask if we can hunt for tokens instead of candy. It's also very helpful in our homeschooling memorization. Tokens are earned for certain goals reached. With a risk-free guarantee, I don't know why anybody wouldn't try it. Consistency is the key. Thanks so much for helping keep peace in our home!! :)


REVIEW: If we are to take the Lord God as our model in raising children, then the implication is that we should also provide appropriate rewards. I have never wanted to "bribe" our children into compliance, so I found the following excerpt from Debbie Preece's book very interesting: She notes that: ". . . according to Webster's Dictionary a bribe is: 'Anything especially money-given or promised to induce a person to do something illegal or wrong.' . . . Webster's defines a blessing as, 'The gift of divine favor. Anything that gives happiness or prevents misfortune.' This book is packed with fun ideas like "The Slothful Servant Quarantine," as well as practical charts and ideas. Altogether a very valuable resource to aid you in child training and setting up and enforcing chores. Lorrie Flem, Editor of TEACH Magazine. author's note: The SLOTHFUL SERVANT ROOM QUARANTINE is designed for ages 8-18. This provides a simple and effective way to get children to clean their rooms to your specifics. They can't use the room until the QUARANTINE is taken down by you. Psychologists refer to this type of reward system as "A Token Economy" or tokenomics as I like to say. It provides a positive, happy experience for compliance and a negative experience, that of losing tokens, when ignored. I like to call it raising children with the "Economy of Heaven!"

Awards and Honors

HAPPY PARENT AWARD EDUCATIONAL CLEARING HOUSE "With From Combat Zone To Love At Home, the weight is off of your shoulders, because the program sets the rules of the game in place." OUTSTANDING PRODUCT FOR OUTSTANDING RESULTS."For very little out of the pocket expense, you can gain some order and peace in your home. All of the charts, tokens etc. are all included in the book... Full instructions are included on the tape, she walks you thru it, in its entirety." Lorrie Flem, Editor of TEACH Magazine:Chore and Behavior Systems-SUPERIOR PRODUCT RATING "I have long been engrossed in trying to find the perfect chore and behavior system for my family to use. This illusive system must be easy to implement, inexpensive, appealing to mother and children, and of course, effective. FROM COMBAT ZONE TO LOVE AT HOME is one of my favorites."

Past/Present Clients

I am LOVING From Combat Zone to Love at Home! We have begun to implement it & are awe-struck by the results we're already receiving. My almost-9-year-old son is motivated toward goals (of wii time, in particular) like never before, and we love the idea of blessing our kids rather than always "being on them." Where Accountable Kids failed us, though, this fills in the gap. Where Celebrate Calm gave us the guilt about our yelling voices, you gave us the solution to move from that to blessings. Sheesh, I cannot say enough about the system's effect on our family. Lisa REVIEW:We really loved using the token system and it couldn't have come at a better time. I'm the mom of 7 with 6 children still living at home. This system has been a huge blessing in curbing arguments and slothfulness. With a risk-free guarantee, I don't know why anybody wouldn't try it. Try using plastic gold or multi-colored coins for tokens. They are fun and sold at her store. REVIEW: I've just begun listening to your seminar and also reading your book about your Wonderful system. My spirit quickened when you talked about the analogy of the Garden of Eden. I'm excited to think that perhaps I've found system that might actually work! I too have tried everything I can think of to achieve the results you talk about. JM,OK REVIEW:At first I wasn't sure I needed this book, but it turns out this book teaches me to mimic the Economy of Heaven in dealing with my children and, by so doing, enjoy consistently good behavior in my children whose behavior will spring from happy hearts! This book IS and has been a heaven-sent gift to me. It has blessed me in my Motherhood... and my life!!! I'm so very thankful!!! VF-FL

What do you like about this subject?

FROM COMBAT ZONE TO LOVE AT HOME has been recommended and used by family psychologist, Patricia Taylor of Houston, TX for blended families. I love this book! The happy face program is amazingly simple. Within two weeks my daughter put her arms around my neck and thanked me for the Happy faces. A must have for every frustrated parent who has tried everything else!

What do you still hope to achieve/learn in this field?

I have wanted to update and reformat my program as the Ultimate Survival Manual for frustrated parents for many years. I finally did! It is planner-sized perfect bind with three holes for planner insert. (That's 6x8 approx.)THIS book comes with a COMBATMOM Franklin Covey, $30 valued, day planner.

Something interesting about this subject that others may not know:

The new book has 160 pages in full color, with "battle plans" for successful maneuvers in getting first time compliance of your little "commando's"! "Direct Action" ideas help you regain your authority as "parent". Necessary surveillance tactics to avoid landmines and combat zones are used throughout the book as you earn your commanding stars and stripes of "Best Mom in the Whole World!"

Something controversial or provocative about this subject

Let's re-evaluate our thinking about rewarding children for doing "what they're supposed to do anyway. There is scriptural evidence that God wants us to serve Him with His rewards in view, not try to ignore His rewards and just serve Him because it's right to do so. "He who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him" Hebrews 11:6.

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Ryan Toms03/16/12101010Thank you for your help.
Emily03/05/1210Thank you so much for your help!
Dee01/06/12101010Thanks for the prompt response. It is .....

Recent Answers from Debbie Preece

2016-06-06 Can you teach a three year old child learn to?:

In my experience, usually 3 1/2 begins the trek to reading and counting.  Read books with alphabet concepts, emphasize what letter the pictures you're looking at start with, play with letter toys and soon

2014-01-30 5yr old attitude and not listening at all:

Hi Mandy,  I can empathize with you!  I think every mother feels the same way at some point.  I know I did and I agree the whining is what can bring us to the breaking point.  We need to remember we are

2013-06-13 5 year old daughter still struggling with separation anxiety:

Hi Erin,  It is a difficult thing for a parent to see their child struggle isn't it?  It is difficult for the parent to teach independence and empowerment as well.  You have been the center of your daughter's

2013-05-29 memory of my 7 year old:

Hi Stacy,  It's not the memory of the 7 year old, it's just the way of all kids!  They like knowing it bugs you.  Try asking more specific questions:  What kind of exercise did you do today in Basketball

2013-05-13 second try about activity levels:

Like the saying says, If at first you don't succeed try, try, again!  Fostering love of anything demands that there be an effort to learn and do.  No one loves exercise, but they usually love the results


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