playgroup problems

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Dear Jenn, Could I ask you for a piece of advice? My daughter is already attending playgroup . I’m amazed at an early age that she learned a lot like eating independently, wearing her slippers properly, and a lot more things that an ordinary 2 year old cannot do yet. Today, her teacher spoke to me about my daughter beating her classmate. Honestly i don’t want to make excuses for my daughter though i told her teacher that she won’t hit anyone if she was not provoked but still I know that it’s wrong to hit or hurt someone. I was convicted of my actions. Because nowadays, I’ve been disciplining her too much. And sometimes because I have a lot on my plate, I really get impatient with her and shout at her. I can’t help but think that my own behavior has caused my daughter to be aggressive towards […]

4 types of parents

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Two weeks ago, I took Ryan to the dentist because I noticed that his permanent teeth were coming out but the milk teeth were still very much intact. The dentist recommended that 3 milk teeth be pulled out to give way for the new ones. As she explained that she would have to administer anesthesia injections, Ryan started to cry and just wanted me to take him home. As a mom, I was faced with a decision. A dominant parent would say “You’re being a baby! Just stop crying, sit still and let the dentist do her job!” A permissive parent would say “Oh son, I don’t want you to cry. Let’s just go home and forget all about the dentist.” A neglectful parent would say “Oh fine! Do what you want to do! I really don’t care what happens to your teeth!” A loving parent would say “I know […]


Posted on 7 CommentsPosted in Parenting

My friends are always amazed when I tell them that I don’t have to wake my kids up on weekdays to get them ready for school. They have their own alarm clocks, and as soon as it goes off, they run to the shower, put their uniforms on and eat their breakfast. That’s when my husband joins them for their morning devotions, while I sleep in with our youngest, Joaquin. 🙂 For most families, weekday mornings are stressful. It is hard enough to get cranky kids out of bed, much more to push them to the shower, finish their breakfast and make it to school on time. With 3 kids going to school, I really don’t want to be shouting at them early in the morning and forcing them out of bed. Having trained our kids to take charge of their morning routine, life has been much easier for all […]

on becoming baby wise

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A few days ago, a friend of mine who just recently gave birth was asking me about my experiences on parent-directed feeding or what is more commonly known these days as “babywise.” You see, it is always a joy for me to share how this feeding method have had a great positive impact on my mommy life. When I had my firstborn Nathan, his first few weeks was very exhausting for me. I breastfed him on demand, and his schedule was so erratic. I hardly got any sleep, went anywhere or did anything else but feed, feed, feed. I remember times when I would cry whenever he started crying because I was just so tired. I noticed my milk supply decreasing too as a result of being so stressed. On Nathan’s 4th week, a friend of mine lent me this book entitled “Preparation for Parenting” by Gary and Anne Marie […]

the power of a smile

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Joaquin is almost 2. He has already discovered the infectious power of a smile. He learned that his smile brightens up mommy’s day. He learned that his smile gives daddy a nice “welcome home” after a long day’s work. He learned that when he smiles, somehow, everyone around him lightens up. He learned that when he smiles, people react with their “awww…. or how cute!” He has mastered the art of smiling. Lately though, I’ve noticed Joaquin misusing, abusing and overusing the power of his smile.  When he wants chips from his sister Janina, all he needs to do is flash his smile, and Janina gives him what he wants. When he wants a toy that his brother is playing with, he does the same. When he touches something he’s not allowed to touch, he smiles at me knowing that my heart will melt and I’l let him get away […]

good parenting book

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Just in the last 2 weeks, several moms have asked me online about what good parenting book I can recommend. Off the top of my head, I can think of one: SHEPHERDING A CHILD’S HEART by Tedd Tripp. I’m sure my husband would make the same recommendation. We got our copy of this book many years ago when we just had 1 child. It was given to us by Pastor Steve and Deborah Murrell, our mentors in parenting. I must say, this book has had a great influence on how we are raising our children. Here are some of the many things I learned from that book: Our goal is to empower our children to be self-controlled individuals living under God’s authority. As parents, we must require obedience from our children because God’s word calls for obedience and the honoring of parents. The Heart is the Focus of Shepherding (“Above […]

discipline myths part 3

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This is the last of the series. For part 2, click here. 3. DISCIPLINE WILL DAMAGE MY CHILD Again, I want to reiterate. Hitting will damage your child. Beating will damage your child. Slapping your child in the face will damage him.  These are forms of abuse and will leave major emotional scars on your children. The kind of discipline I am talking about is done within the context of a loving relationship. It is done by a parent who is in complete control of his emotions. The rod of discipline can take many forms, depending on the age of the child. I don’t spank my 14-year old anymore because for one, he is already much bigger than me, and spanking wouldn’t be as painful as grounding him or taking away his cellphone. For my toddler, Joaquin, I use a small wooden spatula and give him one swat or spanking […]

discipline myths part 2

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This is part 2 of a 3-part series. For part 1, click here. 2. MY CHILD IS GOOD. HE DOESN’T NEED DISCIPLINE. That’s what I thought too. My first baby looked so angelic I didn’t think he could do anything wrong. The first few months, all he did was eat and sleep and coo and make us smile even when he was asleep. He was such an adorable baby! He was the easiest, happiest baby I’ve seen. But when he started walking and talking, he learned to assert his will and insist on what he wanted. One such incident was when i told him to stay away from the electric fan. Inspite of my warnings, he was so mesmerized by it he decided to stick his little finger inside while it was running. Until now, his finger bears the scar of his foolishness. I remember when Janina was 2 years […]

discipline myths

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God has given us parents the responsibility to train up our children. He also gave us the manual. It’s the Bible. If only we would look closely at what His Word tells us about discipline, we would all be more convinced that He does want us to do it. In my next series of blogs, I will be writing about the most common reasons I hear from parents who don’t feel comfortable about disciplining their children: 1. I LOVE MY CHILD TOO MUCH TO DISCIPLINE HIM. Anyone who was repeatedly hit out of anger by his parents as a child, or spanked by a leather belt all over his body, or yelled at and humiliated in public, would never think that discipline can be done out of love. And I don’t blame him. Any form of discipline that doesn’t respect the the rights and dignity of the child is abuse. […]

wait your turn

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Years ago, when Paolo and I just had one child, we hosted an American family who had several kids. Over dinner conversations, one child would interrupt his dad and he would just raise a finger to that child and carry on with his conversation. After the dad finishes his conversation, that’s the only time he would give his attention to his child. I would always feel sorry for that child who, in my inexperienced mind, was ignored by his dad. Didn’t the dad have to drop his adult conversation to give attention to his own child? Today, having 4 kids, I often find myself doing the same thing to my children. It is quite a challenge to carry on a decent conversation with my husband with 4 kids around who all constantly demand my attention. What I now realize is that American guest of ours was teaching their kids to […]