My childhood experience remains the best part of growing up. I relate a lot to this chapter of my life. It was filled with laughter, exploration, creativity, imagination and pure childhood innocence.
As a growing child, I never knew I was picking up important tools for the future. Tools that strengthen the foundation of growth, nurture and love. Tools that strengthen the bond between childhood and adulthood and everything in-between.
In our busy and modern world, we often forget the importance of growth, the necessary tools needed to help our children grow, not just physical growth, but, the emotional and spiritual growth. The link between the past and the future.
Here are few things your children will always remember as they climb the ladder of growth. Continue reading “10 things your kids will always remember.”
Parenting can be daunting. The burden of looking after another human can have effects on our relationship with the children. Parents sometimes forget how precious their children are and in the moment of anger and frustrations, we tend to lash out without meaning to.
It has been proven that positive words have lasting effects in shaping children’s future. Expressing how you feel should not be when your child makes you proud, good words and positivity should be part of parenting.
Here are some encouraging words to say to your child daily. Continue reading “54 encouraging words to say to your child.”
Yippie !!! Long summer holiday is upon us. The children are home and the long awaited holiday is eventually here. Keeping the children happy is very important. Here are few tips on how to tackle those long boring days when there is virtually nothing to do.
- Summer Cleaning: Cleaning and sorting out the house with the children is very important. Give your child a task for the holiday. Make a rota on who does what. It might be the simplest task, but, every little help. Think of tasks such as cutlery-sorting, shoe arrangement, litter picking etc.
- Healthy Competition: Competition between siblings can be fun if well planned. Think about food seasoning competition. This game involves you providing food sample and different herbs/seasoning. Asking each child to season his or her food using the herbs. I once used fish for this competition and I asked my children to choose and season their fish. After cooking, we all had a tasting test, the winner was decided and the children enjoyed their seasoned food. It is a simple way to introduce a new food to the family.
- Consult your child and ask for his or her opinions. Children do have amazing advice.
- Star Gazing: On days when the sky is clear. Get your children out, spread a blanket, lay down and stare at the sky. Talk about the moon and the stars. Talk about the planets. This activity is just beautiful.
- Fruits/Flower Picking: My children love this activity. If you look very well, there are trees bearing free fruits and flowers that no one needs. Go out, pick a mixture of fruits and have fun sharing.
- Giving out: The truth about giving is the satisfaction and contentment you get in return. Summer holiday is the time to sort out old toys, books, clothes and shoes. Get the children involved. Let them decide what to give out and what they still need. Give to out to charity. Give to friends and family. Just give out.
- Rain Gauge: I loved running around in the rain when I was a child. Giving your child a container to measure rainwater whenever it rains is a fun thing to do. Make it fun and measure after it stops raining.
- Chalking: Who doesn’t like to make a mark? Colourful chalks do the tricks with children of primary school age.
- Canvas Painting: Painting can be very fun. Canvas painting is even more enjoyable as it’s easy to just hang, it also adds a professional touch to all art works. Enjoy painting together with your child. Use a variety of colours. Talk about what you are doing.
- Tell Old Tales: Tell your child stories you heard when little. My children love to listen to the tales of my younger years. I am sure yours will love your stories too.
- Meal Planning: Give your child the power to plan the family meal for a week. It is fun and it encourages critical thinking.
- Feed the birds: Don’t throw away your old bread crumbs. Take the children out and feed the birds. It is satisfying!!!
- Write a Letter: Write letters to family members living abroad. Encourage your child to write then walk down to the post office together. This is educational. It is great.
- Kick bad habit: Summer holiday is the time to kick the bad habit. It is time to talk about it and to apply a measure that works.
- Pay a visit to the Dentist /Optician: A visit to the dentist and Optician might be all you need to prevent future problems.
- Be a Tourist of your Community: When was the last time you tour your immediate environment? I am guilty of this and I am willing to take a tour. Be my guest. Rediscover your community.
- Play card games and ball games. Run around in the park. Have lunch in your garden. Sleep under the moonlight. Learn a skill.
- Plant a seed and watch it germinate. Have fun exploring. Visit lost friends and family.
- Check on your neighbours. Share the food you prepare with your child.
- Enjoy this summer holiday together!!!
As we sat with the adults watching a movie, I wondered what this was all about. I did not understand what the movie was all about nor did my friend. We sat silently, glued to the scenes parading in front of us on our black and white TV trying our best not to disturb anyone. The scene was interesting in a very strange way. It was also scary.
The following day, my 5-year-old friend came to me with a blunt knife asking me to replay the scene we both saw on TV. I did not know where she got the knife from, but, excitedly I collected the knife off her. I was about the age of six.
We had the mental image of the main character with a knife in his hand, running around chasing his victims. In our heads, we could only remember a scene. A gruesome scene. Continue reading “The Danger Lurking Within.”
My early years’ education was a battle for the fittest. Academic excellence was rated at its highest. Children were celebrated for their achievements, but, not in a very healthy way. There were competitions of who knew what. Emphasis was not placed on creativity, it was all about who remember the most, a kind of declarative memory was what my teachers were after.
In this era of madness, some children were unfortunate to get labeled as “losers” while some were classified as “winners”. The “losers” formed a caucus for their leagues. They walked together. Played together and failed together. There was never a mix between those fortunate to be tagged as “Winners”. Continue reading “The Caucus of Losers”
The boy who never listened and I went to the same school. He never sat still and he was always in trouble. At home, he was the same. He had short attention span. He played hard and learning was hard for him. He was restless and inattentive. Learning was difficult and no school was ready to tolerate his eccentricity. He changed school many times. Due to his hyperactiveness, he was tagged “the boy who never listen”.
The ‘boy who never listen’ cut across as someone in a trance. He was not organised and sleeping was not important to him. The pressure of rearing such a difficult child put a strain on his parents’ marriage and they separated when he was 8, his mother bore the burden alone. He had poor social interaction with his peers and adults around him. He had problems with discipline and this was a significant problem in his life. Continue reading “The Boy Who Never Listened.”
My mother got me a doll when I was about 6. The doll was made out of plastic and had a little bath and shower. It had a little wire for water to pass through. It was an amazing little gift and a little possession of mine. My doll had a miniature world with everything it needed. I cannot remember what happened to my doll, I had it for a while and it just disappeared. I cannot remember having any industrially manufactured toy after my little doll disappeared.
As I grew, I made do with whatever I could find around. Dressing up games were achieved using old clothes. Most of the play I engaged in were centred around role playing. I found solace in using old cassette as building blocks, empty milk tins and cans with a thin thread were used as a transmitter for communication. With a little help from my peers and sometimes from my siblings, I learnt to make kites from newspaper and strands of brooms. Hide and seek was one of the favourites and I was great at it.
We sang and danced and made up songs for many occasions. We picked fruits and tried new tastes. We wandered around a lot under the guardian of an older child. I experimented with gardening and harvesting. Tree climbing was a game I was I disliked for I was not good at climbing and I got mocked by many of my friends. We did up-scotch under the hot sun. We learnt to make parachutes out of polyethene bags and tested their durability on windy days. Dark clouds were great signs for me, there was nothing relaxing than a cold shower of heavy pouring rain. We drew on the ground and had competitions on hopscotch games. The boys had their games and so were the girls. Most of which generated out of pure curiosity. Continue reading “How to Raise a Non-Materialistic Child in a Materialistic World.”
My cousin came to live with us when he was just 5. I do not remember the circumstances that surrounded this transition to our house. However, I remember he got enrolled in a school nearby. He was a likeable fellow and was never tired of running errands. He was good at chores and would outsmart everyone at tidying up the house or doing the dishes. He loved dancing and could tell tales everyone enjoyed listening to. He was creative and entertaining. He was very good at negotiation. He was popular among his peers. He was playful, lively and jolly.
At around the age of 8, my cousin’s bed-wetting habit began. He would wet the bed 5 times within an 8-hour sleep. With him, nothing worked. From bed-wetting, my cousin started stealing. He would steal from his friends, school, neighbours and people he did not know. He began stealing just for the fun of it. My cousin w stole things he needed and things he didn’t need. He stole a box filled with keys one day and he did not know what to do with keys of different sizes! Continue reading “The Tale of my Cousin and his theft.”
I was in a training one day. The workshop was about “The effects of positive words”. A young lady in her 30s was the trainer. The trainer had a significant look, a look that was not too appealing and as I looked at her I had many thoughts in my head. She was in total control of the class. She knew her stuff and understood her audience,but, something was not right about her looks.
She started the workshop with these words, “When I was little, my mother always complain about how messy my room was and how scruffy I looked. This continued into my teenage years and I couldn’t be bothered till now “.
Then I knew it, the thought in my head finally focused on how scruffy this lady looked. I remember thinking that she actually let the negativism of her mother’s words shaped how she represented herself, but, I thought again and I wondered why.
I , sometimes, say some words to describe my children. Words that don’t bring out the beauty they encompassed. Words that don’t justify their innocence. Words that I say only when I am angry. Words that I always regret after uttering. Words that I cannot accept from people.
Continue reading “The Dangers in Negative Words.”
I am not sure if I received loads of cuddles as a little child. I remember many pats on the back when I did something good. I remember my father carrying me on his shoulder when I was about 4, I also remember odd cuddles when I was sick, I was a sickly child and I often had my mom sitting beside me crying and praying for me to get well.
My mother was a great mother. She loved me and my siblings dearly, but, cuddling and kisses were not part of the ways my parents expressed their love. I had pet names given to me by both of my parents, but, I did not receive many cuddles nor kisses.
I am sure I must have received all the cuddles I needed for my entire life (from my parents) when I was an infant. When I had no retentive memory. When I was just growing my senses, probably when I was learning to walk or just before I started walking or talking. I have seen pictures of me as a baby being held in my mother’s arm, so I must have received loads of cuddles.
I grew up having so much respect for my parents, but, I wouldn’t just walk up to any of my parents and gave them cuddles, that was not part of my upbringing. I did not remember being hugged by my mother as a teenager either.However, I was well loved, but, not cuddled much.
As I venture further into the world of parenting , I learnt that cuddling is part of parenthood and it does not have to stop once your child becomes independent. Children who receive continuous cuddling through their lives tend to benefit more than those who receive less cuddle.
Continue reading “Cuddling: The magic touch to a happy childhood”