January 2009


Boy have we had lots of family time this week… with school closings on Tuesday and Wednesday and today!

Go Diego Go and I have spent lots of time together and the best part we got to spend some time with hubbie as well…

I think Go Diego Go was missing his special time with us since we’d been out of town for two weekends in a row….

I saw an amazing change in him from Tuesday on (I picked him up at noon). He had been a cranky terrible terrible two Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday morning…

I swear it was the time out time that we got from our weekly routine on Tuesday and Wednesday and of course now today…

We had a break in routine on Tuesday and then on Wednesday he actually played with mommy and daddy or shall I say “mami and papi”… We ate lunch together as a family and then he headed off to bed for naptime…

He got in a good nap and since then all has been smooth sailing…

A good nap and some time with mom and dad is important in all children’s lives… When I say time, I am talking about quality time… not just watching tv together or being in the same room… but actually paying cdxattention, listening, and actively participating in your child’s life even if it is only for 10 or 15 minutes at a time…

Obsviously more time spent giving your child positive attention the better… but in this day in age… as it said in the book I am reading… Our society no longer prescribes rest time and/or fun time… It actually has absorbed almost if not all of it…

If you consider that internet, email, and calls make you readily available to anyone at anytime… there’s is no alone time, no time to regroup, no time to refresh, and no time to just be.

For kids, it’s the same as well… They are placed into schools earlier with structured curriculums… I think school is great for an 18 month old or 2 year old for socialization and exploration…

I don’t believe in the rush for your 2 year old to memorize their numbers and colors… exposure ok… teaching those basics at 2 not necessary…

See that’s what preKindergarten is supposed to be about… but teachers, parents, etc… expect preKindergarteners to come to school with some knowledge… well I thought that’s what teachers were for… teaching your children…

Don’t get me wrong I believe 100% in parents re-enforcing their child’s lessons at home… but teachers should be teaching academics not social education and parents should be teaching socialization and re-enforcing academics…

It seems that in elementary schools these days, many children know the basics of academics but have no solid foundation in manners, respect, and courtesy. So our teachers have to take a couple of steps back to teach manners, respect, and courtesy before getting to the academics… what a waste of time…

My mother always says, “If you don’t parent your child at home, someone else will”.

Kiddos are getting more and more homework at younger ages and recess is being yanked away from them…

How sad is that? Our kids are living way more stressful lives than our grandparents ever dreamed for them…

Back to family time… Family time, rest time, and just “be” time is part of learning how to say no and learning how to say yes to what’s important to us!

We must begin to set boundaries at work, schools, socially, and with ourselves in order to bring back that peaceful time of just being…

Why should we sacrifice our lives, the lives of others and the lives of our children and drive in the ice because it’s a weekday and our companies demand it… there is no law which says you cannot defend your family or yourself… Fear keeps us from saying no to our bosses instead of saying yes to our families needs.

Advertisements

So… I just uploaded pictures I’ve taken while exploring my photography abilities…

I get better and better the more I pick up the camera and explore… Although… when I look at my amateur photographs and check out photographers who are so amazing… I realize I have quite a bit to go! ja!

That’s ok… this is a hobby and it’s supposed to be fun, right?

I am not sure how I get people to look at my pictures on Flickr… I added friends by looking them up on my address books…

other than that… I don’t have a clue…

Lately, I haven’t picked up the camera much… At my nephew’s baptism, I decided to take pictures and then my battery ran out…

oops!

At the same time, I was relieved to be able to enjoy myself and not feel the pressure to take a bunch of pictures…

So I am interested a finding one of those beginner professional cameras… like the Rebel… Although, I just realized many photographers don’t like that one…

I am looking for something inexpensive say less than 1000… to start with… explore… play… and develop my skills…

at the moment… I would like to use my photography skills as a hobby… not that it might not be a fun career I just don’t think I am there yet…

Any ideas????? suggestions???? Where could I buy a good starter camera and lens? what about new vs used or refurbished?

thanks for the help in advance…

Every once in a while we come across people who get it… whose lightbulb flicked on… and well… they finally understand something you’ve been telling them for a long time…

It is amazing to see how much change can happen in a child’s development in so little time when a parent feels empowered.

The parent follows through with their homework and voila… toddler is using new words and beginning to use two word phrases… consider that 9 months ago… this baby could barely utter a vowel sound.

This baby was talking in the back of his mouth with throat-like sounds… nothing came out of the front…

geez… this is wonderful… for the child’s self esteem, independence, as well as for the mom’s self esteem regarding her parenting abilities…

The best part was seeing Mom’s proud face full of glee when he produced “te amo/I love you” on his own… This mama was shining brightly!

How exciting… now don’t get me wrong… there’s still a lot to do with this kiddo… but he’s come soooo far…

So… my second example of empowering happened this evening… there’s nothing more amazing than seeing a proud spouse…

Boy was he proud…

He couldn’t contain himself… hubbie was ecstatic and he had every right to be…

He did an amazing job and maybe just maybe he sees in himself what I see in him… that is maybe just once hubbie sees his potential….

His potential to be a great person in his career… a person others will want to mimic and become one day…

Hubbie has, at times, doubted his abilities and his potential to be that person whose known as THE business man…

It feels wonderful to know that I’ve been able to empower lives that I come in contact with on a regular basis…

My breath is not wasted when I educate, explain, or repeat myself in order for a person to gain the self esteem needed to reach their full potential… as a person, as a mother, as a career person, as a loved one, as a friend, or any other role that person may need a little boost to fulfill at their best.

I am feeling a bit INTP today… not that I am not INTP everyday… but today I feel restless… bored… ready to change… and, of course, impatient.

I was at the school today… feeling a little overwhelmed and ready to just give up and run away… I haven’t heard from my other prospects at this point… Although, I know that things seem to move slow… and prospects will come and are in my midst.

Sometimes I think maybe it’s time for a new location and a new environment… I’ve been known to have nomadic tendencies and static times make me uncomfortable…

I want new and different… I want relaxation and less stress… peace and at last finding the best, the all, and the good…

I have to remind myself to be patient… good things and change are closer than I can imagine…

I am taking time to remember and re-develop my creative side… writing, crocheting, decorating my home, and playing with the camera… the one thing I feel I need that I don’t have is my piano…

My piano was my outlet growing up and now I live far far away from my piano… I dream of a baby grand in my formal dining room under a beautiful chandelier… playing amazing music and redeveloping the extraordinary skills I once enjoyed using as a expression of my thoughts and desires…

I wonder what I can do with myself in the meantime… I wonder if I am moving in the right direction and better is always nearby and little by little things are wonderful…

I have to remember the most important…

I am strong. I am love. I am abundant. I am wealth. I am happy. I am good. I am healthy. I am beautiful. I am mom. I am wife. I am self-employed. I am me.

So… I don’t know what’s happening these days… I’ve talked for years about events that have happened in my life and, well, I have been so controlled and collected…

Maybe even too frank about the events and the causes and/or results from those events…

Lately, some of my memories have caused me to become a tear-eyed mess.  It’s so confusing to me to even think that these crazy uncontrollable tears are coming… It’s like they come from left-field… especially after all these years I am talking 5 or 10+ years…  I am not talking about a year ago…

Weird.

Does that sound crazy?  I mean I thought all those things were behind me… I almost feel more confused about them now than I did then…

It’s just… well… I donno… headaches and migrains are becoming more common say weekly or daily sometimes…

I can’t figure it out… but I wish it would all go away… I don’t get any of this… and I sure as hell don’t like it…

It’s causing havoc and desperation… GO AWAY… LEAVE ME ALONE… I SAY…

It may go away for a little awhile and then it all creeps back up before I know it…

Anybody else feel like that?  Or have any idea what I could do to move on and get over it?

Ever since I was little I remember thinking how I would live in Panama when I grew up instead of the United States.  Panama is where my family’s from and so naturally I just felt like I liked it there and I “fit in”.  

Then again that was when I had no idea what adult life was like…

Later in college, I had the opportunity to study abroad… I went to Italy…

ah… Italy… I loved it…

I hated that I felt restricted in the program but loved being in Italy… loved being abroad… it felt good… it was fun…

Since then I’ve always thought it would be amazing to work and live abroad…

After college, I went on to get my masters and married.  Therefore, I never got the chance to live and work abroad as a single adult…

Now I have Go Diego Go and my hubbie…

For some reason, the idea of living and working international is still appealing. 

My hubbie at one point had that same desire… but since Go Diego Go he can’t decide if we should risk it…

I think at times hubbie would still like to go international… but the sense of responsibility creeps in and he has to do what’s right… which means following the straight path because it’s secure…

It’s hard to up and leave… leave everything behind and start over… with a new language, culture, home, social life, and everything… My hubbie should know he came to the US from Latin America…

Every once in awhile he talks about going abroad… this time he mentioned Foreign Service Officer… working for the State Department in a consulate or embassy…

It sounds interesting to him… Managerial path or the Economic path…

It definitely sounds interesting to me… traveling to many countries, living abroad, learning and understanding the cultures through immersion…

I think it’s a great tool for teaching Go Diego Go diversity… 

I wish we knew someone who’d been around FSO or worked as an FSO per say…  That way we could pick their brain…

My hubbie worries that he’ll be posted in a country where Diego and I cannot go with him… but at the same time I assume the State Deparment is well aware that there are some FSO who need posts where their dependents can be relocated as well…

I wonder… where we will be in a few years?  will we still be here?  or will we take our friend’s, Lisa, advice and jump the gun…

Lisa and Jason have amazing things to say about their adventure abroad… They talk about pros and cons… but there are pros and cons to everything… they look at it as a chance of a lifetime which they thank God everyday for helping them take…

They are going on 3 years abroad and love it…They’ve seen the world and been to places they’ve never imagined they would venture to until now…

I want to see the world… I want to try new things… I want to see new places… and find a place that we’ll always go back to…

I want to give my son the opportunity to see the world and understand culture…  I want him to honor differences and focus on the similarities of life among different cultures.

When babies are born their only source of communication is through crying.  They cry because they are tired, hungry, dirty, in pain, and want to be comforted.

Hence, babies learn that the world revolves around them.  Moms, dads, grandparents, and caregivers in general are at the babies side within seconds of hearing them cry.

Crying is what allows babies to survive.  It is vital for babies otherwise they would not get their basic needs met and would in turn become “failure to survive”.

And boy do they have lungs!   Infants have different cries.  Moms can hear the different cries within a month of their babies birth.  In fact, some people have a better ear for children’s cries…

I get really annoyed when I go to the mall and hear a baby desperately crying because they are worn out and tired.  I just want to go up to that Mom and tell her to take the baby home…  There is plenty of time for shopping… the stores aren’t going anywhere and the clothes will be here tomorrow…

As infants grow, their communication changes as well.  They still cry but now they use gestures, smiles, looks, tugs, and eye gaze to communicate.

Crying is still equally as important for communication.  They let us know when they are hungry, tired, upset, or in pain through crying… We know when they are scared through their wimpers or screams.

Crying can be decreased or maybe even prevented if we keep in mind situations which will set our little darlings off.   For example, keep in mind naptimes and mealtimes when planning your day.  People who are tired and hungry become polar bears very easily and they have rationalization skills.

Our little children cannot rationalize… they just need to eat or sleep or whatever…And if their need is satisfied, their mood usually changes within seconds.

Also, boredom can be real source of crying and temper tantrums and for negative attention seeking behavior.

Routines are important and I believe in them… but remember that routines do not mean rigid.  Routines mean flexibility.

Add new activities, rotate toys every 3 months or so, and be creative with your child’s day.

Practice dancing, cooking, reading, etc.  You can go on imaginary walks.  Put them to work and let them help with housework… They love to help at this age.

Be sure to talk to them and teach them how to communicate through your example of telling, asking questions, and answering questions throughout the day.  You can ask them to tell their siblings or dad what they did earlier in the day to encourage them to communicate and take turns in discussions.

As your infants become toddlers, their crying and whining can become intolerable and make you feel desperate and anxious.  This is a sign that infants are growing and maturing.

Although, all of us as parents would rather satisfy their desire or need to stop the crying.  Sometimes it is important to have willpower and let your child cry it out…

When toddlers become frustrated or mad, they cry and scream and may go through a temper tantrum.  This is the time when toddlers are learning self calm and regulate their behaviors.

They do not have the language or the cognitive functions to explain and understand what they are feeling at the time.  So they cry.   It is important for toddlers to experience this frustration and anger to learn how to deal with those strong emotions in an appropriate way.

Your goal is to set your child up for success in their life… This means teaching them that life is not always fair and it sure doesn’t revolve around them.

It may be cute as a young child for them to think they are the center of the universe but as they grow and mature they aren’t cute anymore.  They become impolite and spoiled…  At least, that’s what our society leads us to believe.

Therefore, patience and waiting are two good things for our little darlings to learn…

However, sometimes toddlers cry out of frustration due to their mom’s decreasing ability to guess what they want or need.  This is an important moment to  begin observing your child’s speech and language skills.

By 24 months, your child should be using at least 50 words and simple phrases such as “more, milk” or “mommy, come”.   They should be using more words than gestures to communicate.  If your child consistently points and/or leads you to his desired needs, then it may be wise to encourage your child to use words.

This can be done by offering two choices (instead of asking a yes/no question (do you want milk?); say juice or milk?).   Remember to name everything in their environment including actions, objects, feelings, and so on.

If your child still does not seem to pick on the words regularly or does not begin to imitate words.  It might be wise to have your child evaluated by a speech and language pathologist.

Keep in mind that you need to teach your child before you expect them to respond.  That includes new routines, imitation, discipline.

Teach before you discipline.  Toddlers are still learning they haven’t yet learned.

I cannot stress enough the importance of early intervention.  The younger the child (as young as 18 months) the more likely you will see big changes in their communication if they receive the help they need for speech language pathologists.

Frustrations, behavior issues, and communication skills will improve significantly once your child can communicate his wants and needs.  Remember it’s not just about using words, it is also about how well your child can be understood.

If your child is trying to use words and no one understands him, it is likely to increase his frustration and may lead your child to limit the use of words in his communication.

What would you feel if every time you tried to say something no one understood you?   I would be like “this is for the birds… why should I even try?”

In general, the first sounds produced correctly are p, m, b, t, d, k, and g.

Parents should be able to understand what their child says:

50-75% at 24 months  and 75-100% at 36 months.

Strangers should be able to understand what your child says:

>50% at 24 months and >75% at 36  months.

So if your child is not able to produce those sounds or is not easily understood, you may want to look into a speech and language evaluation.

Remember that crying has it’s place in communication.   Most importantly assess your child’s crying and moods to determine the cause and prevent triggers.

There is a function to every behavior.

The goal is to find out what that function is in order to improve communication skills with your child and teach them the appropriate way to express their emotions.

Next Page »