Having a successful vacation with children requires setting your expectations beforehand.
Friends of ours (who now have grown children) recounted the first time they went on vacation with their newborn. The wife ended up sitting on the beach all day with the baby while the husband went surfing and sailing. It was a disaster.
She said, “ If it’s going to be like this, I may as well stay at home where at least I’ll be more comfortable.” And no – he’s not a selfish guy. They just hadn’t counted on how much having a baby would change things, and they hadn’t communicated what their needs would be in order to relax.
I think the latter is more essential than packing a toothbrush. (more…)
Where in the world do you live? And, are you from there?
I live in Rhode Island, U.S.A, and though I have lived in New York & Maryland, and traveled the world in between, I ended up settling down only an hour from where I grew up in Massachusetts.
What language(s) do you speak?
English, and Spanish at about the level of a five year old.
When did you first become a mother?
I had my first baby when I was 32, which is young compared to my own mother who had her first child at 43.
Are you a stay-at-home mom or do you work outside the home?
I am a stay at home mother, which I had always wanted to be. Having grown up a latch key kid with a working mother, I had always idealized my neighbor who stayed home with her kids, baked cookies and sewed clothes for them. (not that I can sew) (more…)
The Caretaker’s Dilemma: Where am I needed most?
The world (particularly here in the USA) is full of “working moms,” and yet we regard ourselves and others with emotion, anxiety and something bordering on distrust.
If you’re a working mom (or if you are married to one) you know what I mean. You’re chatting with another mom at the park, and while your kids (and her kids) climb up the slides, the conversation turns personal. She tells you that she’s watched her kids climb the slide for the last six hours and in turn, you tell her that you saw patients (or graded papers, or drove to a client, or filled orders) for the last six hours.
And though at this moment both sets of kids feel the same sense of security married to freedom, both of you feel like maybe the activities that comprise your everyday conflict with your children’s needs.
Which brings us back to why we work in the first place, really…Not to give our kids more stuff, but to give them more of what they need: experiences, education, food and shelter. And, when the time comes to buy stuff (which, for most of us with kids happens quite a bit, actually) we like to have the means to make a choice about what we bring into our home. (more…)
I struggled, while raising my elder son, about which parenting style was best in order to raise a well-behaved child. I was struggling because I didn’t know how to balance being firm and giving him the tenderness he needed. I was raised in a very strict and conservative family and school. Love and emotions weren’t expressed in any way, only strict rules and orders. The main objective was to have obedient and well-behaved kids.
I didn’t want to raise my child the same way. I was convinced that it was important for me to show my love to my child. As my style didn’t match my parent’s style, I was criticized and blamed when my son committed any mistake because I didn’t punish or spank him. They thought that showing emotions and love was a sign of weakness. I was totally against these beliefs, and wanted to raise my son differently. But, sometimes when I was under the pressure of their blame, I found myself spanking him on rare occasions.
It has taken me many years to find out which parenting style I want to follow with my kids.
When my elder son was 7, I felt he was going through a tough time, as he had a new brother and his father and I were separating. At that time, I felt that he was suffering a lot and, although he loves me so much, I felt he was extremely angry with me.
I was consumed by my problems with his father, taking care of his younger brother, and my full-time job. I decided to consult a counselor and she advised me to hold him in my arms many times a day. In a short time, it made a great difference in our relationship and in his behavior with others, many noticed the change . It made him become more and more open, and he started to share with me his thoughts about what was going in his life more than ever. (more…)
Navyn in the Plumpy’nut training room where the moms are educated about how and why this product is used.
“As I stood in the malnutrition ward of a regional hospital, my chest tightened, and I had to work hard to keep my composure. There were no welcoming smiles, only blank, empty stares. My camera, normally always at the ready, dropped down to my side. I couldn’t bring myself to snap images of so many children and mothers in despair.
To my left, a little girl lay on a bed, emaciated, listless, and very alone. I didn’t know her story. “Where is her mother?” I asked myself. All I could do was watch her chest rise and fall – as I did with my own newborn girls – and I clung to the possibility that, in this place, because of the nutritional peanut-paste we make, her life would continue.” -Navyn Salem, Executive Director, Edesia Global Nutriton Solutions.
Navyn Salem was shocked when she first heard the drastic statistics on global child malnutrition, and she was amazed that she had not heard about it sooner. As a mother herself she could not imagine a parent having to lose a child to something as easy to resolve as malnutrition, so the former stay-at-home mother of four, took it upon herself to do something about it.
With over 23 million children suffering from malnutrition in some form, and the cause of about one third of all child deaths globally, she realized there was not enough attention on the issue, and yet it seemed the simplest to tackle. Her father was born in Tanzania, and as an area that she had a connection to, she knew that she wanted to give back to that part of the world.
Five years ago the seeds for Edesia were planted. She began by speaking with experts, with a goal to increase access to products already out there, by expanding research and studying best practices until she developed a plan. (more…)