Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Greetings

In the eyes of children we find the joy of Christmas.
In their hearts we find its meaning.
Merry Christmas to one and all!


Thursday, December 11, 2008

Is Your Child a Leftie or a Rightie?

Sometimes when my son eats he will just hold the spoon with his right hand but not use it, and then picks up the food with his left hand to put in his mouth. He uses most of his left hand when doodling or painting and his right hand when playing. So I'm not sure at this point whether he'll be a leftie or a rightie. I remember as a little child, my playmate who was using her left hand more was encouraged by her mom to use her right hand instead. I didn't realize that this will do the child more harm than good. Though right hand is the right hand for a majority of the population, it is the wrong one for 5% to 10% destined to be a leftie.

Parents should trust nature and time to reveal the handedness of their children and not encourage them to use either hand while still very young.

Here are the reasons why:
  1. The hand a child favors is genetically determined. When both parents are lefties, there's more than 50% chance their children will also be left-handed. When just one parent is left-handed, the chance of a left-handed child drops to about 17%. When neither parent is left-handed, it's down to 2%. Since it's nature, not nurture, at work here, encouraging your toddler to use his right hand won't help and could hurt.
  2. Handedness is not usually apparent until at least the age of 3, and some kids keep parents guessing for several years beyond that birthday. During these early years, it's common for children to appear ambidextrous, freely switching back and forth between hands until they decide which is the more facile. About 20% of children never settle exclusively on one hand or the other, but remain to some degree ambidextrous. Some ambidextrous children use both hands equally well and can employ either for almost any task: other switch off for for specific tasks - for example using the right hand for eating and the left hand for throwing.
  3. Research suggests that when parents try to "force" a child into using the hand he's not genetically programmed to use, handwriting and other problems can result. Consider, after all, how tough it is for you to try to write with the "wrong hand" just for fun; imagine how tough it would be if your were required to use that hand all the time.
There is no foolproof that will predict the handedness of your child, but parents can see some clues already even in young toddlers. Some clues will be the hand that a child uses to draw or throw a ball are better predictors of handedness than the hand he uses to hold a spoon.

Source: What to Expect the Toddler Years


Wednesday, December 03, 2008

To Spank or Not To Spank

I came across a blog talking about spanking as a form of discipline and some bloggers commenting against it. This is a very delicate matter to discuss and yet an important issue to tackle. While parents have different style of disciplining their children, the question still remains - is it right or wrong to spank our kids? What do the experts say?

This is what I read from the book of Eisenberg, Murkoff and Hathaway of "What to Expect the Toddler Years" and I want to share it to all moms.

  • Spanking as a means of discipline has been passed on from generation to generation in many families. Nevertheless, most experts agree that spanking is not effective. Children who are spanked may refrain from repeating a misdemeanor rather than risk a repeat spanking, but they obey only out of fear. Instead of learning to differentiate between right and wrong, they only learn to differentiate between what they get spanked for and don't get spanked for. And they rarely learn self-discipline.
  • Spanking also has many other negative aspects:
  1. It sets a violent example. Children who are spanked are more likely to use physical force against peers, and later against their own children.
  2. By teaching children that the best way to settle a dispute is with force, spanking denies them the chance to learn alternative, less hurtful ways of dealing with anger and frustration. It also represents the abuse of power by a very large, strong party (or bully) against a very small, comparatively weak one.
  3. Spanking is humiliating and demeaning to both the parent and the child, often shattering self-esteem and morale.
  4. Spanking can also lead to serious injury, particularly when it happens in the heat of anger.
  5. Spanking after the anger has cooled may cause less physical damage, but seems even more questionable. It is certainly cruelly calculated, and in the long run is less effective in correcting behavior, since the punishment is so far removed from the offense.
Some experts (and parents) believe that a smack on the hand or the bottom may be warranted in a dangerous situation to get an important message across to a child too young to understand words. For example, when a young toddler wanders into the street or continues to approach a hot stove following a stern warning to stay away. The idea is not to inflict pain, but to quickly call a child's attention to the seriousness of the situation. Such a slap should be followed by an explanation: "If you run into the street, a car could hurt you." Once a child shows that he or she understands what you say, however, physical force is no longer considered justifiable even when safety is an issue.

* * *

It is very rare that a parent will intentionally hurt a child. Most child abusers inflict physical punishment either out of anger or because they believe they are doing it for the child's benefit. Most were disciplined the same way themselves. But anything more than a smack on the botton (well-padded with a diaper) can injure a child, especially a young one. Even something as seemingly harmless as shaking can cause serious damage in the infant or toddler. Certainly, using a belt, ruler, or other weapon is extremely dangerous.

If you ever feel as though you can't control yourself and want to strike your toddler, get help immediately. Call a neighbor or friend who lives nearby or your local child abuse hotline. ( it will be listed in the white pages under Child Abuse and may also be listed in a special section, such as Community Services Numbers, in the front of the book. Do the same if anyone who cares for your child or lives in your home attempts to or actually does hit your child. To have the number handy should you ever need it, fill the number in now under the "Emergency Numbers" listing on the inside back cover of the book.


Monday, December 01, 2008

Are Your Kids Acting Up?

Winter is my least favorite season of all, not only because of the cold weather but also because of the heavy winter outfit we have to wear. It's so frustrating when we have to go somewhere and my son acts up and won't wear his winter jacket, boots, hat and mittens, not to mention he's arching his back sometimes when you sit him in his car seat too, whew! I would sometimes literally drag him just so we won't be late for an appointment. It's always hard to head out in time when things like this happen.

Here are some common problems that moms encounter everyday and suggested quick solutions:

  • PROBLEM: Your child screams uncontrollably when it's time to get dressed.
  • HOW ABOUT: Making it a matter of choice: "Do you want to wear a dress or jeans?
  • NO LUCK? TRY: A change of scenery. Getting dressed in the kitchen might be more fun
* * *
  • PROBLEM: Your child clamps her mouth shut at the sight of a spoon.
  • HOW ABOUT: Taking a bite yourself. It will look less like you're forcing something on her.
  • NO LUCK? TRY: Giving up - for now. She won't starve, so pick your battles.
* * *
  • PROBLEM: Your child refuses to share at a playdate
  • HOW ABOUT: Putting her leadership skills to work: say "Teach Kristen how to play with the toy."
  • NO LUCK? TRY: "Two more minutes, then it's Kristen's turn. Decide what to play with next.
* * *
  • PROBLEM: Your child won't go to bed.
  • HOW ABOUT: Letting her rest on the floor of her room.
  • NO LUCK? TRY: Turning off the lights and TV's. With no reason to stay up, she may go to sleep.
* * *


Top EC Droppers For November

Big thanks and linky love to the top 10 droppers for this month.


Sunday, November 30, 2008

Don't Spoil the Surprise

I'm sure some moms have taken advantage of the Black Friday deals to shop for cheaper holiday gifts. And to check-off gifts on the list, I'm sure some have already wrapped the gifts right away too. But how can you protect the gifts from the probing little fingers of your children so they won't get ripped open before Christmas morning? Here are some bright ideas so not to spoil the surprise and to save you from wrapping them again.

  • You can hide the presents in a box marked "Halloween Decorations" or "Cleaning Supplies". I'm sure nobody would want to touch any of those boxes.
  • You can hide the presents inside the family luggage unless you are traveling anytime soon. Who would suspect that there's a gift inside a luggage?
  • Hide the gifts under your kid's bed. Honestly when was the last time he looked under there?


Top 4 New Year's Mom-olutions

This is one good write up I read in Parenting magazine that I want to share with all the moms. I do #1 a lot and #3 usually, but I would love to start doing #2 and #3 soon. I've been contemplating on taking photography but just don't have the time to do it. Everything else comes first before myself.

  1. Hug your husband once a day for no reason except to show him that you love him.
  2. Once a month, eat a pint of your favorite ice cream, sans a guild, because it tastes so damn good and you like it.
  3. Push your boundaries. Go up to a mom you don't know and start a conversation, try a new recipe even if you're sure your kids won't eat it, or take a photography or dance class.
  4. Write a love letter to yourself. Make a list of your talents and your achievements, both big and small so you know your worth. Because if you don't who else will?


Be Shopping Cart Smarts

Do you know that there are 23,000 children who end up in the emergency room mainly with head and neck injuries due to falls from shopping carts? This is really pretty astonishing numbers. As a mom with no other help around, my son is always with me anywhere I go. Plopping him conveniently into a shopping cart is the most practical thing to do to get the food shopping done pronto. But as my son grows, it gets more and more difficult to keep him sitting still but fortunately we haven't had any accidents yet (knock on wood).

Well since accidents happen the least you expect them, here are some tips to avoid them:
  • Choose a cart that seats a child close to the ground. - Groceries have these carts with attached cars for little kids to sit in. The cars have seat restraints to keep the children in place while the moms wheel around to shop. At Stop and Shop where I buy our food they've got those. But the first time I used it, it was a struggle to get my son out of it. He enjoyed the ride so much he didn't want to leave the car ;-).
  • Scout out stores that offer supervised play areas. - If you can't find one near you, shop with a friend who can push the stroller or hold hand with your child.
  • Get older kids out of the cart - by giving them their own grocery list. This will be fun for them and they will learn how to focus and feel responsible.


Saturday, November 29, 2008

What Toy Is Right For Your Child?

There are so many toys in the market today, especially now that Christmas is almost in our midst. When I go to a toy store I always have something in mind to buy for my son, usually interactive and educational toys. But when I get there, the choices are just too overwhelming. Here are some tips on what toys to look for and what kids can learn from the toys. Depending on the age of your child and the things that they can learn from a particular toy, here are some tips and guidelines you can follow in choosing a toy.

  • IT'S ALL ABOUT DISCOVERY (Birth to 1 1/2):
  1. Mobile, mirrors, soft books - kids can learn tracking object
  2. Rattles and other toys that make sound - kids can learn connecting noises to objects
  3. Stacking toys - kids can learn hand-eye coordination
  4. Pull and push toys, activity tables - kids can learn how to crawl, walk, stand

  • IT'S ALL ABOUT ACTION (1 1/2 TO 3):
  1. Ride-ons, soft balls - for gross motor skills (bigger movements like running and throwing)
  2. Clay, blocks, crayons - for fine motor skills (smaller movements like squeezing)
  3. Play kitchen and tools, puppets - kids can learn pretend play and role-playing

  1. Puzzles, board games, athletic toys - kids can learn social play, sharing (maybe grudgingly, but that's okay)
  2. Dress-up clothes and props, paint kits - Make believe and imaginative throught
  3. Instruments, building sets - Fine motor control, dexterity
  4. Sand or water toys - for different physical properties (shapes, texture, volume)

  1. Trivia, science and math kits - for improving concentration and memory
  2. Computer games, learning software - for strategic thinking
  3. Bikes, skate, scooters, jump ropes - for honing gross motor skills
  4. Musical instruments, arts and crafts - for creative problem-solving

  1. Hobby kits - for developing talents and interests
  2. Karaoke, trading cards - for socialization
  3. Knowledge-or strategy-driven board games - for playing competitively and fairly


Monday, November 17, 2008

Homemade Toys

Have you ever wonder what to do with old socks, papers and cardboards? I saw this website where you can create homemade toys out of your junks. You wouldn't believe how much worn socks I have accumulated in a laundry basket. I am not very fond of sewing the holes in socks but I also can't bring myself to throw them. If you have the same dilemma like I do, check out to get easy to follow instructions on how to make pinhole camera, sock monkey, origami crane and bath bomb out of your junks. This will not only entertain your kids, it will also save you lots of money.


Friday, November 14, 2008

Food For Happy Thoughts

I'm sure a lot of stay-at-home moms here can relate with me that each day is not always a smooth-sailing day. In fact if you have a toddler in his terrible twos, no day is smooth sailing, lol. There is always one thing or two to get frustrated about. But it shouldn't be a big deal if you are eating enough. Yes food has something to do with our daily moods.

If you are feeling cranky don't blame it on your PMS, it could be that you're not eating enough. If you are skipping meals regularly or skimping on meals, it can mean you are not getting enough serotonin. Serotonin is a brain chemical that helps keep anger in check. Good thing you can eat your way to a calmer mood. Serotonin needs the amino acid tryptophan (known as turkey drug) to work, and it only comes from food.

Here are some food combos that will help boost our moods because they are packed with healthy dose of tryptophan with carbs and protein to keep you satisfied and smiling.

  • BREAKFAST: Oatmeal and eggs. Their fiber and protein give yo a long-lasting energy blast to start the day.
  • SNACK: Banana and yogurt. Perk up with yogurt's mood-lifting vitamin D bonus.
  • LUNCH: Baked potato and cheddar cheese. This duo also offers B vitamins to soothe your stress.
  • SNACK: Pistachios and prunes. Rev up with this protein-fiber powerhouse.
  • DINNER: Salmon and brown rice. The brain-boosting omega-3's and mood-stabilizing fiber help make this meal the ultimate happy fix.
  • Asparagus
  • Apricots
  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Chicken
  • Lentils
  • Milk
  • Mozzarella
  • Pumpkin seeds
  • Shrimp
  • Soybeans
  • Spinach
  • Tuna


Monday, November 10, 2008

Keep Your Child Healthy All Season Long

When one in our family gets sick, for sure the other two will follow. We're just living the traditional quotation that 'a family that prays together stays together' only for us it's 'the family that stays together gets sick together', lol. Kidding aside, it is really hard when one member of the family is sick most especially if it's our young children. I would rather get sick myself than see my little toddler not feeling well. But since germs is lurking around, all we can do as parents is to outsmart cold and flu bugs.

Hand washing is the number one way to fight the germs but here are more tips on how to keep the germs at bay:
  • Make bubbles - Teach kids to scrub hard enough to whip up some suds. It's the friction that really matters.
  • Sanitize smartly - I keep hand sanitizer in the diaper bag, my purse, the car, the bathrooms and my son's bedroom. You can never have enough of sanitizer but choose the ones with at least 60% alcohol to kill bugs.
  • Spot-clean - Don't look for the dirt but rather the germs. It is important to pay attention to the high-traffic areas where germs linger, like countertops, phones, and door knobs. My daily routine in the kitchen includes wiping the cupboards' handles and door knobs with disinfectant household wipes to kill the germs that accumulated during the day.
  • Wipe on - Use each wipe on only one surface, then toss it.


Friday, November 07, 2008

Snooze News

If you wake up before the alarm goes off, don't pull the pillow over your head for more shut-eye. We sleep in 90-minute cycles, from a deep sleep into a light one and back again. So if you doze off, you'll probably be jerked awake by the alarm just as you're entering deeper sleep - which translates to major crankiness.


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

To Peel or Not to Peel

My son loves eating most fruits and I'm glad. He likes eating bananas, cantaloupes, honey dew, grapes, oranges, apples and more. I've seen people peeling the grapes before giving them to their kids, I don't. I usually give grapes and apples without peeling them. But which fruits and vegetables can be eaten with their peel on?

  • APPLE - Don't peel. An apple with its peel provides almost twice as much fiber, 50% more vitamin A, and 25% more potassium as one without it. Just wash the apple first.
  • CUCUMBER - Peel. Most of the cucumber's fiber comes from the seeds, and you won't lose too much potassium, either. That hard-to-wash-off waxy coating is there mainly to slow down ripening.
  • CARROT - Peel. The texture of unpeeled carrots can be a turnoff, and peeling wn't cost you much potassium, vitamin A, or fiber.
  • PEACH - Don't peel. The flesh and the skin are packed with vitamins A and C, potassium, and fiber. If the fuzz is adeal breaker, try nectarines, which have the same nutrients and fiber.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Get Moving Tricks

Sometimes getting ready to go out of the house is a struggle when you have an unpredictable toddler. Like when we're running late already for an appointment and my son won't cooperate to have his shoes on or his jacket on, it's really frustrating. Here are some tips or tricks to get your child moving.

If your child is :
  • CRANKY try:
  1. Taking a deep breath yourself. The more frustrated you are, the crankier he'll be.
  2. Singing a silly song while you put on his clothes.
  • ANTSY try:
  1. Making a game out of getting ready. Create a chart with morning tasks down the side and days across the top. Add a sticker as he finishes each chore.
  2. Challenging him to a race. Set a kitchen timer and see if he can get dressed and washed up before the buzzer goes off.
  • SLUGGISH try:
  1. Giving him a small glass of 100% juice. His blood sugar is probably low after a night of sleep.
  2. Putting on some upbeat music and dancing your way through morning chores.


Sunday, November 02, 2008

Is Your Child Getting Enough Sleep?

When my son was less than two years old, he used to take two naps of two hours each during the day. And when he turned two he just takes an afternoon nap for at least two hours. I always make it a point that he never misses a nap otherwise he will get restless at night. And also because sleep helps in a child's growth, I am really strict about nap schedule. But of course there are days when my son will miss his nap especially when I have to take him to my appointments or errands, but I will just make sure he won't miss it two days in a row.

If you are worried that your child is not getting enough sleep, sometimes it may not be a big deal. Some kids are simply natural short sleepers and it doesn't have a negative effect on their health or growth. But just be on the lookout for these signs of sleep deprivation - crankiness, aggressiveness, hyperactivity, difficulty paying attention, a reluctance to wake up in the morning, a tendency to fall asleep during daily activities, or a habit of sleeping two to three extra hours on weekends. If you see any of these symptoms on your child, you should help him get more sleep by limiting caffeine and exercise a few hours before bedtime, keeping TV and computer out of the bedroom, and sticking to a regular sleep and wake routine.

How much sleep most kids need:
  • Birth to 2 months -- 10 1/2 to 18 hours
  • 2 to 12 months -- 14 to 15 hours
  • 1 to 3 years -- 12 to 14 hours
  • 3 to 5 years -- 11 to 13 hours
  • 5 to 12 years -- 10 to 11 hours


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Making Spelling Fun

I was watching Akeelah and the Bee the other night, and I was amazed at how young brains can memorize and master huge numbers of words, much less go through the high intensity of spelling bee contest. I know it can be challenging to teach our kids how to spell and retain words, but it's always good to start them young. Practicing weekly word lists can get dull fast. Here are some tips on how to help your child to master the words.
  • Tell him to eat his words. Let him spell them out with macaroni, chocolate, or Goldfish crackers and then eat them. If it's not snack time yet, then you can give him straws, pennies, or paper clips to use instead.
  • Draw word rainbows. Write the word in pencil, then trace over it with different-color markers, water paints, pencils, or crayons.
  • Practice somewhere new. Use magnetic letters on the fridge, or scribble words with chalk in the driveway or shaving cream in the shower or tub.


Friday, October 31, 2008

Halloween Safety Tips

While trick or treating should be a fun experience, with lots of children running amuck, laughing, screaming, and showing off their wonderful costumes, its should also be a time to take extra precautions. Here are some Halloween safety tips for your children to follow that will make their might out a fun and secure experience.

  1. Smaller children should go in groups of two or more families - always with two adults.
  2. Older children should be required to go in groups of five or more kids, tell you the exact path they plan to take, and when they will be home. It is also a good idea to make sure your children stay within walkie-talkie range and check in from time to time.
  3. Make sure your children only go to houses of people you know.
  4. Avoid any homes that are not well lit and do not have front porch lights on.
  5. Never go into the home or hallway of a home to retrieve candy.
  6. Always use the intersection and never cross in the middle of the street or take a short cut through alleys.
  7. Avoid wearing dark costumes, jackets, or other clothing that cannot be seen at night.
  8. If wearing dark costumes, use reflective tape on both the front and back side of the costume.
  9. Purchase or make flame retardant costumes.
  10. Avoid masks, that can often obstruct the breathing passage as well as your child's vision to not only see what is in front of him/her but who may be coming up from the side. If possible, stick to face paint instead of masks.
  11. Keep sharp objects at home. When running to the next house, children can fall and hurt themselves on dangerous objects, or swing it around and poke the eye out of a passerby.
  12. Carry an emergency whistle and/or can of pepper spray.
  13. Bring along a flash light.
  14. Always examine the candy before eating. Make sure there are no needle points or other signs that someone has tampered with the candy and throw out any unwrapped or opened candies.
Source : Kid's Corner of The Mansfield Buz


Friday, October 17, 2008

My Design Workbench's First Give-away

Blogging has been a great tool for me to meet new friends from all over the world, friends of all shapes and sizes. I admire many bloggers who do not only write great posts but are also very talented and creative in terms of designing blog layouts, digi-scrapping, and what have you. Cathy of My Design Workbench is one of them, who incidentally is holding her first give-away of free blog custom design.

Why did she come up with this give-away all of a sudden, you might ask? Well she just recently found out that she's pregnant of her second child and she's just so excited to share her blessings and talents to everyone. So what better way to express this excitement and share this wonderful blessing but hold a mini-contest. So if you think you need a blog makeover, then spread the word around. Blog about this mini-contest and win a free layout to your taste and liking and other fabulous prizes.

Read below to learn more about the contest.

How would you like to have a custom design of your blog by me, FOR FREE? Have you long to change the colors but just could not figure out which would work best? How about the style, three columns? Two columns? How to do this? How to do that?

Well, leave to it to me honey! All you have to do is spread the word and on Nov 10th I’ll announce the lucky ones. But wait, you have to comment with the link of the post you made. I will assure you that I will check and comment on your post. So get it on!

Prices are:

First Prize:

Custom Design of Your Blog with:
- customized header
- either three or two columns
- 125x125 Entrecard/Grab-Link To Me logo with code
- a mini-digi scrap of your photo posted on the page
- any special request

{This comes with installation too providing I would have to login as you in your account so the work can be done.}

Note: First Prize is open to account with BLOGGERS only.

Second Prize:

- customized header
- 125x125 Entrecard/Grab-Link To Me logo with code

{No installation required but you have to provide me the exact size of your header before hand}

Third Prize:

- $8.00 cash transferred to your Paypal account


- $5.00 cash transferred to your Paypal account


- a 125x125 Entrecard logo (excluding code)

Thanks for taking the opportunity and GOOD LUCK!


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Discover the Power of Art

Looking leads to learning. At Barefoot, we are convinced that introducing high-quality images to children at an early age, as well as encouraging children to express themselves visually, plays a critical part in their emotional and intellectual development.

Here are some guidelines on helping the children you know to develop their artistic potential:
  1. Give your child space to be creative - All you need is paper and crayons, a small table or easel, and a child-size chair or cushion, in the corner of a playroom or bedroom.
  2. Show that you value art too - Join your child and do your own drawings, paintings, and model making.
  3. Encourage your child to respect the materials - Have them look after the paper, brushes and paints carefully.
  4. Provide as many different types of paint, paper and other paintable surfaces as you can. - You don't need to run up the tab in your local art shop, though. The back of an old envelope, the inside of wrapping paper, excess packaging from a visit to the supermarket, can all easily be converted into art materials.
  5. Let your child experiment with different tools and techniques. - Try collage and model making as well as with paints and crayons; with brushes of all shapes and sizes; with twigs, old toothbrushes, potato cuts, combs, sponges, bits of flannel. Anything goes, but make it clear what is out of bounds!
  6. Share pictures and illustrations. - Reflect the world in different ways so that your child can see that there is no "right" or "wrong" way to be artistic.
  7. Collect materials for art projects when you are out and about. - Twigs, sticks, leaves and grasses in the park, fabric from charity/thrift shops, stones and pebbles from beaches and riverbanks, can all be turned into something exciting and special.
  8. Recycle what you have around the house. - Roll up old plastic bags to make rope; keep wrapping paper from presents; give outdated magazines and last season's clothes a second lease of life.
  9. Create a display area for your child's work. - Use a wall of your kitchen or playroom and children's confidence gets a huge boost when their work is noticed and talked about.
  10. Talk to your child about pictures and images that you see when outside. - Visit art galleries and talk about the pictures you like and what they say to you.
Children who learn to be creative when they are young never lose this quality. They become the innovators of the future. The skills they learn, and the emotions they associate with the activities they pursued as small children, will go on enriching and informing their lives as adults. Encouraging an early love of art also helps children to develop their capacity for self-expression and for self-exploration, bringing out their unique and particular talents and qualities as young people.



Monday, July 28, 2008

Introduce Your Child To Different Cultures

Knowing and learning other countries' cultures should be very interesting especially for little children. It's never too early to introduce our little ones to different cultures of other countries, let them know how little children like them live in a far away place. Let your children take a peek into the way of life in other countries so they will appreciate and respect people of different colors.

As Summer Olympics in Beijing is fast approaching and the world is all eyes on China, Barefoot Books is excited to release the very first book in its Young Fiction line called "Little Leap Forward: A Boy in Beijing", a semi-autobiographical book that will surely inspire you to explore the culture of China. This book is sensitively written, a real-life story that focuses on growing up in Beijing in the 1960s, at the time of the Cultural Revolution. Little Leap Forward offers children an intimate and immediate account of a child’s experiences as Mao Tse Tung’s Great Leap Forward policy tightens its grip on China.

Click here to know more about
"Little Leap Forward: A Boy in Beijing" by Guo Yue


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Helping Your Child To Read

Learning to read is the cornerstone of every child's education. By reading aloud and teaching your child in a way that is a pleasure for both of you, you will be sharing one of life's most valuable gifts and open all kinds of doors for the future.

Here are some tips on making the most of reading with your child:
  1. Choose a time and place where you can be quiet and give your child lots of attention. Make the occasion a special time.
  2. Turn off any distractions such as TV, music CDs, radios.
  3. When your are reading aloud, show that you are enjoying yourself.
  4. Involve your child. Let yourself be interrupted with questions; talk about what your think of the story and the pictures.
  5. When your child has started learning to read, follow the text and encourage him/her to point to the words as you along.
  6. Establish a routine. Try to devote some time everyday to reading.
  7. Take your child to your local library and involve him or her in choosing books.
  8. Notice what kinds of stories your child enjoys and look out for ones with similar themes.
  9. When you are reading aloud, praise your child for listening well and sitting still. When your child is learning to read for you, give praise and encouragement too, but be sure gently to correct your child when he or she makes mistakes.
  10. Help build your child's vocabulary and memory skills by supplementing reading sessions with audio books on car journeys and after meals or at bedtime. Audio books are especially helpful in building memory skills and supporting the learning of dyslexic and autistic children.
Sharing your child's journey into reading can be one of the most rewarding experiences of parenthood. You owe it to your child, and to yourself, to make it a priority in your daily life.


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Barefoot Books - Our Story

Watch this video and learn more about the humble beginnings of Barefoot Books and the vibrant community it created.


Monday, July 14, 2008

A Parent's Great Gift To A Child (My Story)

Very early on in my son's tender age I already saw his love for books. He would always take my hand and press it against his book as if asking me to read it to him. Until now, I see how he gets very enthusiastic and excited at just about any book he gets hold of. He can sit and browse through the pages of books for a long time, longer than other boys his age would normally do. He has relatively long attention span and he listens very well. He also picks up quickly when I identify pictures for him in a book. When I take him to the library for story telling sessions, he listens and participates. His love and interest for books made me encourage him even more. I read to him at least 15 minutes everyday, I watch Baby Einstein dvd's with him and explain what's going on. I demonstrate to him how animals and things sound like and basically talk and do interactive play with him a lot.

Recently I was introduced by a friend to Barefoot Books, a company started by two mothers who abandoned the security of corporate world to do something that they believed in. They wanted to publish children's books that are quite different from the rest. They took a big risk and wondered about whether anyone is going to listen or if anyone would ever buy their books. But their strong belief and great conviction in the values they cared about gave them the determination to pursue their dreams. They are convinced that it is never too early to introduce children to other cultures. They believe that children can appreciate high-quality art, and enjoy the music as well as the meaning of language from a very young age. Children deserve the best, and they are dependent on their elders to help them make connection between themselves and others, between nature and culture, between learning and living. They need their parents' and teachers' interest, involvement and time.

Live Barefoot...Imagine!

As I learn more and more about Barefoot Books, I know this is exactly what I want my son to grow up with. As a stay-at-home mom, I take my job as a teacher to my son seriously. I believe that what you teach a child can shape him into what he will become when he grows up. I always find ways on how to engage my son's imagination and enhance his development. I not only look for books with eye-catching designs but also with great contents and high educational value. Although I always say that my son drains all my energy during the day, it is all worth it when I see how he is learning new things and getting smarter every day. I find comfort at the thought that the involvement and quality time I spend with my son's learning are paying off.

So this is why I decided to be an affiliate and sign up with Barefoot Books, I am one with their goals and aspirations for little children. I give Barefoot Books two thumbs up for their great works. For all mom bloggers out there with little children, I am inviting you to be a part of this great community of educators and share their creative books, CD's and other gifts that offer high educational value and lots of fun. Becoming an affiliate of Barefoot Books, not only give you the access to own great books that help enhance your children's development, but it also gives you some earnings on the side. JOIN BAREFOOT NOW!


Barefoot Books Resources


Shop Button


10% Off Square Button


(0-4 Years Old)


(3-6 Years Old)


(4-8 Years Old)


(6-10 Years Old)


(8-14 Years Old)























Friday, June 13, 2008

25 Ways To Improve Your Health

This is just too cute not to show around. Follow these tips and you will surely live a healthier and happier life ;-). Have fun reading.

1.)Brush twice a day!

2.)Dress right for the weather.

3.)Visit the dentist regularly.

4.)Get plenty of rest.

5.)Make sure your hair is dry before going outside.

6.)Eat right.

7.)Get outside in the sun every once in a while.

8.)Always wear a seatbelt.

9.)Control your drinking of alcoholic beverages.

10.)Smile! It will make you feel better.

11.)Don't over indulge yourself.

12.)Bathe regularly.

13.)Read to exercise the brain.

14.)Surround yourself with friends.

15.)Stay away from too much caffeine.

16.)Use the bathroom regularly.

17.)Get plenty of exercise.

18.)Have your eyes checked regularly.

19.)Eat plenty of vegetables.

20.)Believe that people will like you for who you are.

21.)Forgive and forget.

22.)Take plenty of vacations.

23.)Celebrate all special occasions.

24.) Pick up a hobby.

25.)Love your neighbor as yourself.