Saturday, September 11, 2010
Date: December 25 (Traditional)
Purpose: Celebrates the Nativity of Jesus
Symbol: Use of the modernChristmas tree tradition began inGermany around the
Named for: Name originated as a contraction of the Old English words Cristes
Maesse (the Mass of Christ)
Related holiday: The day preceding Christmas is usually known as Christmas Eve
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
The US birth rate has dropped for the second year in a row, and experts think the wrenching recession led many people to put off having children. The 2009 birth rate also set a record: lowest in a century. Births fell 2.7 per cent last year even as the population grew, numbers released Friday by the National Center for Health Statistics show.
"It's a good-sized decline for one year. Every month is showing a decline from the year before," said Stephanie Ventura, the demographer who oversaw the report. The birth rate, which takes into account changes in the population, fell to 13.5 births for every 1,000 people last year. That's down from 14.3 in 2007 and way down from 30 in 1909, when it was common for people to have big families. "It doesn't matter how you look at it -- fertility has declined," Ventura said.
The situation is a striking turnabout from 2007, when more babies were born in the United States than any other year in the nation's history. The recession began that fall, dragging stocks, jobs and births down. "When the economy is bad and people are uncomfortable about their financial future, they tend to postpone having children. We saw that in the Great Depression the 1930s and we're seeing that in the Great Recession today," said Andrew Cherlin, a sociology professor at Johns Hopkins University. "It could take a few years to turn this around," he added, noting that the birth rate stayed low throughout the 1930s.
The new US report is a rough count of births from states. It estimates there were 4,136,000 births in 2009, down from 4,251,095 in 2008 and more than 4.3 million in 2007. The report does not give details on trends in different age groups. That will come next spring and will give a clearer picture who is and is not having children, Ventura said.
Last spring's report, on births in 2008, showed an overall drop but a surprising rise in births to women over 40, who may have felt they were running out of time to have children and didn't want to delay despite the bad economy. Women postponing having children because of careers also may find they have trouble conceiving, said Mark Mather of the Population Reference Bureau, a Washington-based demographic research group. "For some of those women, they're going to find themselves in their mid-40s where it's going to be hard to have the number of children they want," he said.
Another possible factor in the drop: a decline in immigration to the United States. The downward trend invites worrisome comparisons to Japan and its lost decade of choked growth in the 1990s and very low birth rates. Births in Japan fell 2 per cent in 2009 after a slight rise in 2008, its government has said.
Not so in Britain, where the population took its biggest jump in almost half a century last year and the fertility rate is at its highest level since 1973. France's birth rate also has been rising; Germany's birth rate is lower but rising as well. "Our birth rate is still higher than the birth rate in many wealthy countries and we also have many immigrants entering the country. So we do not need to be worried yet about a birth dearth" that would crimp the nation's ability to take care of its growing elderly population, Cherlin said.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
Have you any wool?
Yes sir, Yes sir
Three bags full:
One for the master,
One for the dame,
And one for the little boy
Who lives down the lane!
Baa Baa Black Sheep Nursery Rhyme Origin:The poem traces its origin to the middle ages when poor peasants had to give one third of their income in taxes to the king (master) one third to the noblemen ( dame ) and one third was left for himself ( little boy who lived down the lane !!)
Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,
Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.
All the king's horses,
And all the king's men,
Couldn't put Humpty together again.
Humpty Dumpty Nursery Rhyme Origin: According to Legend, Humpty Dumpty was a cannon that was placed at a top of a castle ! ...it fell down during an attack and could not be repaired by the king's men !
went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water,
Jack fell down
and broke his crown,
And Jill came tumbling after.
Jack And Jill Rhyme Origin:Their are many different stories to the origin of this poem. One says that Jack and Jill were originally Hjuki and Bil, and the moon captured them while they were filling water from the well. The markings on the moon are said to be of the two boys and the bucket in between them !! ..so check out the moon today !
Another says that it represents two kings, one English and the other French, who went to war, which resulted in large scale losses. The people hated them so much that they made this poem to make fun of them !
hmm... wonder why they didn't call it jack and john...but i guess that wouldn't rhyme with hill, right ?!! ..
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Sweet dreams are made of this: Photographers Tracy Raver and Kelley Ryden capture the calm contentment of napping newborns in these adorable portraits. Based in Nebraska, the photographers specialize in getting images of babies around 2 weeks old. Raver says she's able to get them in midslumber by keeping the studio warm and cozy, and having their moms feed them before the shoot. Raver and Ryden share their work in the book "Sleeping Beautes: Newborns in Dreamland.
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
If parenting is the hardest job in the world then step parenting is close to impossible.
Apart from household and other works, the most difficult thing is disciplining the step child.
As step relationships are usually complicated and loaded with disagreements, it is almost impossible for a step father or mother to refrain from disciplining their step child.
Children who have been through the trauma of divorce test the step parents limits by trying to see how far they can push until the parent is upset or breaks down.
Child testing limit is common in normal parenting also. If you are a step parent, you have to realize that there is a natural boundary between the child, the child’s parents and step parents.
Discipline! If you have a step child who is acting out, it becomes difficult for you to control the child’s misbehaviors. Biological parent must understand and should assist in that situation.
Generally the discipline should come from biological parent and not the step parent. If you wait to become involved in any disciplinary action, it gives time to be included in the children’s thinking.
Bond can be built! It also provides trust and respect to develop. Bond between you and your child can be built. This bond is the necessary base from which discipline works.
Allow the biological parent to take care of disciplining until time and healthy relationship bonds establish between you and step child. If you wait to discipline your step child, it gives time for the child to build a strong relationship with you.
This also helps you to remain in neutral position and you can focus on nurturing issues. Because multi home step families are much more complex than biological families, it is harder to maintain effective child discipline.
When biological parent has hard time saying “no”, you should not take the blame. If you say “no” to your step child, it can create problem between the couple and the small incident can turn into a large argument.
You should be careful and should not run to your spouse to give a detailed report of every minor violation the step child commits. Biological parents can discipline their children without the fear of being rejected by the children.
You are often anxious about the rejection by your step child. If you don’t like the step child or don’t respect the step child, effective discipline becomes hard.
If biological parent is negligent in child’s discipline, it can cause conflicts. This can cause issues and conflicts between you and step child as you feel that you have to apply the rules and discipline.
You feel left-out or unimportant if you are not involved in child-care efforts. Step families should set some rules. These rules make child into a happy and well-adjusted adult as long as they are given respect and love.
Don’t demand respect! Respect should be there from both sides. If you demand respect, you will not get it. Respect can be earned by being consistent and fair with step child.
Consistency is the major factor for any parent. Consistency helps to discipline your step child without losing your step child’s respect.
As a child is sensitive to changes that affect his/her stability, you have to create a safe environment to help the child to go through the changes that come with divorce.
Spanking has been, and still is, a common method of child discipline used by American parents.
But mothers who report that they or their partner spanked their child in the past year are nearly three times more likely to state that they also used harsher forms of punishment than those who say their child was not spanked, according to a new study led by the Injury Prevention Research Center at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Such punishments included behaviors considered physically abusive by the researchers, such as beating, burning, kicking, hitting with an object somewhere other than the buttocks, or shaking a child less than 2 years old.
“In addition, increases in the frequency of spanking are associated with increased odds of abuse, and mothers who report spanking on the buttocks with an object such as a belt or a switch are nine times more likely to report abuse, compared to mothers who report no spanking with an object,” said Adam J. Zolotor, M.D., the study’s lead author.
Although some surveys show evidence of a modest decline in spanking over the last 30 years, recent surveys show that up to 90 percent of children between the ages of 3 and 5 years are spanked by their parents at least occasionally.
Zolotor and his co-authors conducted an anonymous telephone survey on parenting of a probability sample of 1,435 mothers in North Carolina and South Carolina in 2002.
Forty-five percent of the mothers reported that they or their partner had spanked their child in the previous 12 months and 25 percent reported spanking with an object on the buttocks.
Usually, children are more attracted to undisciplined acts more than disciplined ones because they require less effort and seem more spontaneous.
To teach positive discipline, as a parent, you need to invest in spending time with your children to understand their bad attitudes, behaviour, and mental growth, in order to find out what works best for them.
Remember that parents are the children’s first teachers. You can make your children learn self-control, ways to get along with others, self-help, and other aspects of socialization, but this is only possible when both parents and teachers are involved continuously in encouraging preferred behaviours, boundary limits, etc.
Effective Discipline Techniques
Because children follow what you do rather than what you say, it is important for you to maintain consistency. You will need to consistently follow a set of values that are important to you.
To teach your children standards and moral values, discuss them with your children on a personal level, rather than relying on schools, churches and other institutions to teach them.
When your children are disobedient, try not to overreact in front of them. This reaction may cause you to lose control, rather than providing them with a source of security.
The most important, and most difficult, aspect in providing positive discipline to your children is administering punishment wisely. When your children disobey, the goal is to guide them correctly, smoothly and lovingly while explaining the wrong they have done and demonstrating the appropriate way to do the right thing.
Institute values in such a way that shows discipline is not all about yelling, receiving punishments and scolding. Because parents are a mirror to their children, you need to demonstrate confidence in your actions to show what you mean by positive discipline.
By complementing discipline with a sense of freedom, you let them know that you love and care for them a lot.
Explain the concept of positive discipline by using natural consequences as a benchmark. For example, if your children throw a toy or ball out of the window, explain to them rationally that if they throw the toys out, they cannot play with it.
The best way to achieve these goals is by showing affection and love towards your children. Many studies have shown that if they feel pain while learning positive discipline through physical punishment such as slapping or hitting, or verbal abuse, discipline will never work well. Just the opposite, children tend to learn what they should not.
All children need help in learning positive discipline and good behaviour. The easiest way for you to judge if a discipline method has worked on your child is by observing whether your children are carrying out more acceptable than unacceptable behaviour.
Are you in search of better alternatives for spanking? Spanking or physical punishment can develop negative attitude in children from your side and leads to various problems in future.
If you want to avoid physical punishment for your kids and teach them discipline in effective ways, here are few ideas for you.
- Give choices to them instead of punishing physically. For example, you can offer choices like, “would you like to play with your sister without hitting or would you like staying alone in your room?” But, be careful, while giving choices to your child. Don’t combine a choice and threat together.
- Instead of punishing your children for misbehavior, clearly explain your kids what you expect from them and teach them how they can change their misbehaving attitude.
- Take time for yourself to stay calm or act to your child’s misbehavior. If you are really stressed out with your child’s behavior, simply think about their positive behavior and stay calm for few minutes.
- Instead of smacking your kid’s hand when he touches something he is not supposed to, kindly but firmly pick them up and take them to next room. Offer his favorite toy or another interesting and safe item to avert them.
- When you really feel like punishing or slapping your child for his behavior, it would be better for you to withdraw the argument immediately. Take time for yourself to calm down and tell him to meet you in the next room after few minutes.
- More often many of you try to focus on your child’s misbehavior and degrade those positive things that your child can do well. So, identify positive behavioral aspects in your child and use them to avoid misbehaving attitude.
In an earlier time, it was believed that children were to be seen and not heard.
If you find yourself in the unenviable position of having your child argue with you, you may find yourself experiencing a bit of nostalgia for those days.
You need to meet three criteria if you are going to put an end to your child arguing with you or talking back to you:
- You need to be willing to hear what the child has to say.
- You need to be willing to consider whether or not your child has a valid point, and whether or not you may have made a decision or rule that upon reflection was not a good one.
- You need to be willing to follow through. This means changing a decision that should be changed, or holding firm if your original decision was appropriate, regardless of how much your child complaints.
Sometimes arguing is harder to spot because it can take different forms. For example, your child may make the same request again and again, or may ask each parent the same question hoping for a different answer.
If your child does this, you should not give in to repeating your answer, and for heaven’s sake, do not change your mind in response to repeated demands.
You need to only give your answer one time; if you continue to give your answer and engage your child in a dialogue about your decision, then he or she has hope that the matter is open for discussion and will continue to repeat their request.
Giving in to a demand made multiple times only teaches your child that they can get what they want from you if they are willing to ask long enough.
Complaining is another way of arguing. If a child is not happy with your decision, they may make their displeasure clear by complaining and muttering under their breath while carrying out their assigned task.
If your child is rude or becomes disrespectful, then you should address that bad behavior. General complaints, however, may just be ignored. As with multiple requests, when your child learns that complaining won’t result in the desired change, he will stop complaining.
Another way to avoid arguments is to have a process to discuss decisions that involves having clear rules and understandings.
As long as your child knows you are willing to hear their complaint and honestly consider what they have to say, they will be less likely to argue. Here are some rules for having a discussion with your child, or really, with anyone.
- The sound level of the discussion must remain at normal levels. No yelling or screaming or raised voices.
- People should be treated with respect. This means no name calling, no sarcasm, no little jabs.
- Everyone should get a chance to express their opinion.
- When the parent declares the topic at an end, then the discussion ends. Again, this is more likely to be a satisfying conclusion if your child feels he or she has been heard and their opinions respected.
Another way to preempt an argument is to offer your child a choice. Your child may not like the choices offered, but giving them a choice between alternatives that are acceptable to you empowers them.
There are many things you can do to teach your child organizational skills .
One way to help your child stay organized is to have a specific place for everything in their room.
As a parent you can help by staying organized too. Your child will look up to you, to learn.
What they see you do, they will do. If they see you being organized they will often follow in your steps.
Setting up a schedule will also help your child with daily organization. If your child has a schedule they can follow it will help them stay organized. You can also have specific places that things are done.
For example, you can have a place to do homework, a place for play time, and a place for snack time. This will help to keep things separated and not so cluttered.
Organizing a Homework Area for Your Children
When setting up a place for homework you should determine a place for pencils, papers, erasers, and crayons. This will make the clean up process much simpler.
When your child is done with their homework, you can have your child clean and put things in the designated spots. That will help your child to stay organized.
You can make special boxes, or use jars that are decorated with the pictures of the items that go into each container. Using pictures ensures that children of any age can understand exactly where items should be placed during clean up.
Chore Lists Can Help Your Child Stay Organized
You can also make a chore schedule for your child to do during the day. You can have your child do things around the house. Consider chores like cleaning inside the house, and doing yard work outside.
When your child understands where things go around the house they will begin to put things away without having to be asked. In addition, you will be teaching your child that organization is not just something that you teach; it is something that is important and required of the entire family.
Lists Are the Key to Organization
Creating lists is a very important part of becoming organized. In the same way you need lists for shopping or chores your child needs lists of what they should do during the day.
They can make a list for school that includes the things they are supposed to take with them. They can make a to-do list of all their chores. When your child makes a to-do list they can check what they have done so that they can clearly understand what is left to do.
Parental Participation Is Very Important
Teaching your child to stay organized requires that you get involved. While teaching your child to be organized you should help. Once they get used to doing all their chores, and having a check list, you can give them their space and let them try it on their own.
After a while your child will be organized and you won’t even have to say a thing. The most important part is your support. Your child will follow the actions that you complete. Set an example and you will soon have a very organized child.
Could there possibly be something else, something psychological, that is making a child act out?
First, try and figure out if the child is spoiled. Does the child always get their way? How often do they hear “no”?
If they have not been told that word and have never had any form of discipline it is likely that the child is indeed spoiled.
The next step would be to discipline the child. There are many methods, depending on the severity of the behavior. There is grounding, an old but still popular method, taking away games, television time, or giving them chores. Their behavior will not change overnight, but eventually it will change.
Now if the child is not spoiled, but when they do not get their way, they turn violent and destructive, it may be the case that they have psychological problems.
Look for other signs, such as mood swings, depression, or any problems at school.
The next step is to try and find the cause. Try to figure out if anything recently traumatic happened, such as a recent move, loss of a loved one, etc. Also talk with the child to find out how they feel. If they do feel worried, sad, or scared often, it is time to consult a doctor to see if it is something more serious.
Remember, even if it is psychological, there are a number of treatments out there that can help, from talk therapy all the way to medication. So the odds of getting the treatment that works best is good. Just be patient and supportive.
Parents who are able to instill in their children qualities of self control are probably enabling them to deal with violence and bullying from others as well as helping them improve their school performance.
According to a study, which put kids through a three month mentoring program, it was observed that those children who were trained to control or manage their anger were more in control of their emotions. They were also seen as being better behaved in class. Such children were also less likely to suffer punishments or reprimands.
There was a lot of difference observed between children who had been part of the mentoring program and those who had not. It was not mental health professionals; but simply adults who mentored the children which yielded results. The skills in relation to self control that the children imbibed were seen to help them function better in class and also meet school expectations better. The effects of the mentoring were direct and positive.
We have perhaps known ourselves as adults what a destructive and wasteful emotion anger can be and how disempowering it can be to lose control. If we are able to tutor our children to be the master of their anger, we can do them a big favor!
12.The New Basics: A-to-Z Baby & Child Care for the Modern Parent
The New Basics: A-to-Z Baby & Child Care for the Modern Parent, by Dr. Michael Cohen, is the perfect learning tool for parents who worry too much.
This book covers all of the basic concerns of new, especially first time parents, with a positive out look through out.
Dr Cohen covers everything from Apgar scores to warts, adoption, flu, anesthesia, and many more topics.
This book isn’t recommended for parents of children with special needs, because they have different issues.
Dr. Cohen writes with a style that makes you feel like you are getting a house call from your favorite family doctor.
11. Discipline That Works: 5 simple Steps
“Discipline That Works: 5 simple Steps”, by Joyce Divinyi is just five simple steps that offer a highly effective approach to helping your children learn the things that they need to know to be successful an happy in life.
Children are taught communication skills, thinking skills, and self control skills while the parents are taught discipline strategies and new ways to handle difficult situations with their kids.
This is a great tool because it gives advice to both the parents and the children, working as a great life guide for both sides of the problem.If you have siblings in the house, check out this book.
10. Siblings Without Rivalry
Anyone knows that raising one child can be a handful but consider raising several in the same house hold.
Sibling rivalry is a serious problem that can affect the normal development of your children.
Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish have addressed this problem in “Siblings Without Rivalry” a common sense, straight forward manner.
Instead of telling a child how stupid it is to feel challenged by a brother or sister, each issue should be addressed in a positive life affirming manner.It teaches about making sure that your children have alone time, never get sucked into unwinnable games and never role categorizing your kids.
9. The Expectant Father
The old saying that it takes two to tango is especially apt in parenting.
There are so many books and guides on how to be a good mother, or parenting from a mother’s perspective that Mr. Dad, author Armin Brott, decided the time was right to give Dads a hand.
“The Expectant Father” is especially directed at the unique problems faced by expectant and new fathers.
With over a million copies in print, this the the first book to take a real look at the father’s point of view.There are chapters that deal with subjects all the way from when you found out that you were going to be a father to how to start a college fund.
8. Teen Grief Relief
Teen Grief Relief is a great self help book both for parents and teenagers.
This book was written by the highly credentialed mother/daughter grief experts, Heidi and Gloria Horsely and provides information on understanding the teenagers’ emotions, when and how to talk about death with your children, the difference between normal grief and complicated grief, and includes many references and a good resource guide.
Shared in the book with the readers are teen stories, feelings, and techniques that help grieving teens not only survive grief by thrive after a painful loss of a family member or friend.Take a look at this book’s review and more detail at RainbowBooks.
7. Baby 411
If you are having a baby, congratulations. Coming home from the hospital with your new baby is wonderful-until the reality sets in.
This baby doesn’t come with instructions. Now you realize that you are going to need help. Baby 411 by Ari Brown and Denise Fields, is just the book you need.
Complete with instructions on how to select a pediatrician, new information on HOT topics like cord blood banking, autism, the truth about old wives tales and internet rumors, a detailed nutrition guide including breast feeding advise, getting the baby to sleep and many other features.
Baby411 is for new parents and can be obtained at the Windsor PeakPress.
6. Building Character Skills in the Out of Control Child
Building Character Skills in the Out of Control Child, by Dr. C.R. Partridge is a self-help parenting hood that helps parents understand the role of character development in a child´s personal growth.
Dr. Partridge’s extensive experience tells that immature character development is cause from giving a child too much comfort, allowing them too much control and power.
This book has chapters on how inaccurate diagnosis can harm a child´s development, how skills differ from morals and how to recognize immature behavior, and the “four cornerstones” of character development.If you have a child who is exhibiting behavior problems, this book is a great guide book.
5. Single Mothers by Choice
One new issue in parenting in our new world in raising children in a single parent home.
Being a mother is a tough job and becoming a single mother is much more so.
Author Jane Mattes founded her national group Single Mothers by Choice and used it as her foundation for her book, “Single Mothers by Choice”.
This book deals with the psychological issues of becoming a single mother, understanding that for the mother to be able to effectively raise and teach her children she must first understand herself.
This book is available at the Single by Choice website along with other support tools for single moms.
4 . Travels with Baby
If you are planning to do some holiday traveling with your new baby, then Shelly Rivoli´s book, “Travels with Baby” should be in your luggage.
This book teaches parents how to travel safely and legally with infants and toddlers.
The book contains hints and tips on flying, driving, trains, ships and even backpacking.
It contains information on flying with special needs children, traveling with twins and even traveling for an international adoption.
Now you can enjoy urban adventure, world cruise and camping trips with your child along.
Check Ms. Rivoli´s book out at her website today and get a step up on your travel plans.
3. 1-2-3 Magic Parenting Solutions
One of the best selling books and programs on the market today that consistently deliver great results is “1-2-3 Magic Parenting Solutions”.
Available either at Amazon.com or directly through Dr. Phelan’s website.
This series is all about discipline that works, especially for children with discipline problems.
This technique is called counting discipline and involves giving a numbered sequence of warnings to the child before a time out is called.
All in all a highly recommended and well received series. Dr. Phelan teaches that children will respect boundaries, once they know where those boundaries are.If you are having discipline problems with your children, Dr. Phelan may have the answers that you need.
2 . What to Expect
The “What to Expect” child care books are a shoo-in for second place on anyone’s list.
This is actually a series of books that start the reader out during pregnancy with helpful advice, hints and helpful directions.
There is a breast feeding guide, general baby care, immunizations, general questions answered about allergies, medical care, how to get the baby to sleep, etc.
Other books in the series take the parent through the baby’s early years into it’s teens with helpful advice through out the book, specifically targeted at a certain stage of development in the child’s growth.
Take a look at it now at whattoexpect’s website.
1. Dr. Spock´s Baby and Childcare
No list of of Parenting books can be complete without “Dr. Spock´s Baby and Childcare“.
For nearly 2 generations, parents world wide have gone to Dr. Spock for his expert, insightful pediatric advice.
All the information that you need is in his book from breastfeeding techniques to dealing with emotionally troubled children.
This book has chapters on common medical care, immunizations, learning disorders and gay and lesbian parenting.
A must read at Amazon.com for only $20 for the paperback, 8th edition. No one with children should be without this book.