Helping a child who is scared of the dark Every parent knows that when your children sleep through the night, life is a lot easier. A broken night sleep can make the best of us tired and irritable; when it is repeated every night for a long time, everyone becomes increasingly worn out by the lack of rest.
Punishment is one of those loaded terms. For some people it infers the sort of heavy-handed parenting that relies too much on hard discipline. Most parents however see some form of punishment as a necessary corrective that emphasises right from wrong and instills character and values. I suppose the difference in the two meanings comes from the underlying motivation of the parent and the nature of the punishment itself.
As I was sitting here thinking of all the awesomeness that this wonderful, new, non-2013 year will hold, it occurred to me that my oldest child will turn ten this fall. Ten! I have officially been a parent for a decade now, and I’ve had six kids during that time. When I took a step back and considered that I’ve been living in Baby Central for the better part of my adult life, it occurred to me that I must have accumulated some knowledge during that time. I mean, surely I’ve learned at least one or two things about this whole “keeping small human beings alive in your home” thing, right?
Last week we spent hours taking down the Christmas decorations which had made the house so bright and sparkly for the previous fortnight. The crib figures were packed away, the wilted holly and ivy taken down, the tinsel rolled up and the once-green tree hauled out into the back garden where it was chopped up for firewood with great gusto. This year, though, we also packed away the lovely Christmas cards which we had received from family and friends because we’ll be using them next year to make our own Christmas cards. It’s something my sister did to great effect.
It always seems as if time is not on our side. With work, family and various other types of obligations it can seem impossible to enjoy one another in family life. Particularly, in the evenings, somehow time just flies. So my husband and I decided to try and come up with a way to spend more quality time together but specifically focusing on time for one another each day. And we found that in order to do so, that we would have to do something radical, and we did - we removed our television!
A while back I found myself at a social event where I didn't know many people, and I decided to try an experiment: For the first half of the event, when anyone asked the common icebreaker question, "What do you do?" I would answer accurately and say, "I'm a stay-at-home mom." For the second half of the event, when anyone asked the same question I would reply by saying, "I'm a writer." That description of myself felt like a bit of a stretch, since I spend 90% of my waking hours right now doing anything but writing, but I went ahead and owned that title for the event as part of my experiment.
It’s one of those modern ironies - as food has become more abundant, cheaper and more easily available, parents have become increasingly concerned as to their children’s diet. Supermarket shelves are crowded with a staggering, and sometimes bewildering, array of food products, but are some of them good enough to eat?
Lately I do things a little more slowly and with a waddle in my step. Nearing the last part of my third trimester, thanks be to God, I have not too long to go before my ‘holiday’ (as my neighbour calls it) begins. But I have enough time, though, to worry about a few issues - the main source of concern being around my nineteen-month-old son. You see, he’s been with me 24/7 and is so attached to me that I’m not sure how he’s going to handle the new addition.
Whenever I pick up something written about getting your children to sleep, it seems that the easy way (or rather the sure fire way) of getting your toddler to bed always entails a routine. This definitely seems to be the ticket, for it would appear that habit keeps the wee ones in check when they can anticipate what’s to come and know that in the end bed, and sleep, is the inevitable outcome.
Mothers-to-be give serious consideration to how they should feed their newborn babies – either with formula or by breastfeeding. And to be honest, it can be difficult to make a decision, especially if you work outside the home. However, I feel that every mother should want to do what’s best for her child, and the fact is that, hands down, mother’s milk is far superior to any formula. So since this is the case, then why do nearly half of Irish mothers choose to formula-feed their children instead of breastfeeding them?
Last week I found myself incredibly behind in everything; it seemed like the faster I went the more behind I got! This was especially true regarding the house to the point where getting through the workload seemed hopeless. So, with not much of a thought process, I decided instead to throw caution to the wind and go get a few inexpensive bits for the kids at the big toy store in town. Getting the wee ones a little pressie each for no particular reason every once in a blue moon is a nice thing to do. And it surely brings a smile to everyone’s face; both those giving and obviously those receiving! So, happy as Larry to spring out of the house, off I went with the kids.