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Archive for Parenting

For Mother’s Day

The author as a toddler with her mother

If you are among the fortunate majority, you probably grew up with your mother. Or maybe a female relative was like a mother to you. Lucky you! My deepest sympathies for those who did not know their mothers or had them for too short of a time.

She is often our primary caregiver and role model. A person you may wish to be like … or someone you may not wish to be like. Or both! A person who shaped our lives, our beliefs, our faith – almost everything about us. Our mothers!

My Mom was a stay-at-home mother and I always remember her freshening up before my Dad got home from work. She changed her dress, washed her face, put on lipstick. A nice idea!

She made our clothes, and matching ones for our Barbies. She made our meals (Shake ‘n’ Bake, anyone?) and taught me how to bake. Mom taught me how to sew, knit, write thank you letters and do laundry. She wouldn’t let me wear jeans or pierce my ears. She made me take piano lessons and practise daily. She bought me round toe brown oxfords because they were good for my feet. She also bought me these amazing pearlized leather pumps for my wedding day thirty years ago …

My mother – My Friend, Globetrotter, Social Butterfly and Shopper Extraordinaire! Maddeningly self sufficient with energy to spare and in excellent health! I want to be you when I grow up!

Twenty nine years ago I became a mother and its a role I always wanted. I am fortunate to have both a son and a daughter and even though they are adults now, its true what my mom always said – You never stop being a mother! Its one of the strongest bonds between human beings and vital for our survival. It will be interesting to hear what my children think I taught them someday, but truly I probably learned as much from them! Thank you Mike and Shannon for letting me be your Mom!

Contrary to my own popular belief, Mother’s Day was not started by Hallmark Cards – its roots trace back to ancient Greek times. Mothering Sunday has been celebrated in the UK since the 1600′s. It does not need to be a huge commercial celebration. Most of my friends who are moms appreciate time with their grown children – and moms with little ones underfoot generally appreciate some time with themselves! However you celebrate it – enjoy your Mom, your kids and your day!

Happy Mother’s Day! And thanks Mom!

 

 

Travel and Packing Tips for Parents

Be ready for fun in the sun!

Are you lucky enough to be heading for warmer climates with your family?Here are ten tips to help you with your travel and packing.

  1. Pack twice as many tops as bottoms, if your kids are out of diapers. People notice what you are wearing on top more because it is next to your face. Also, you are more likely to spill on your shirt than on your pants.
  2. Pack reversible clothing – if it gets dirty, turn it inside out!
  3. Roll your clothes – they take up much less room in a suitcase or duffel bag.
  4. Place your rolled clothes in resealable plastic zip lock bags. You can use one for each child for each day. These can be reused from trip to trip.You can also pack the dirty clothes in them at the end of each day. Squeeze out the air and toss in the suitcase.
  5. Pack a few unisex items in case one child’s bag is lost or delayed.
  6. Pack the same clothing items for each family member.  i.e. “OK, everyone – put 1 pair jeans, 2 pair shorts, 5 T shirts, a windbreaker,  pyjamas and 6 pair underwear in your bag.”  Bring hats, sunglasses and sunscreen for everyone whatever the season.  If everyone has the same type and number of items it is easier to keep track.
  7. Consider taking fewer pieces of luggage, as many airlines now charge $25 each way for a suitcase. Double up if you have several children. Their clothing is generally smaller so you can fit two or three children’s clothing in one bag.
  8. Check if there are laundry facilities at your destination. Tossing a load or two in the washer mid-week can save you money and will greatly reduce the amount of clothing you need to bring.
  9. Get suitcases with the new wheels that roll in all directions. Even your kids can help guide those around an airport.
  10. Think and pack light!

 Bon Voyage!