I have been offline for awhile. Life has been a bit crazy here. On June 14th, my daughter’s 8th birthday, we went out for a ride a little before noon. When we returned 3 hours later we found the front door unlocked and all of our business equipment stolen, including our laptops and our video camera that we use to shoot our vidoes. It has been quite devastating to try to recover. We have felt like we were out of business all this time. There was nothing to work on and little purpose to life. We are slowly recovering and should be back in full swing here by next week. It is crazy how life can change so suddenly.
On another note, I was feeling a bit nostalgic today. I went to the library yesterday and got some books to read to the children and a few videos. I am a die-hard book lover. I can pass over shoes and clothing, but when it comes to books, I have no self control. I usually leave the library with several bags full of books. Well there among the DVD’s I came across an old favorite. It was a Sesame Street video that my oldest daughter, now 13, watched as a baby. It is called Learning About Letters and it teaches children their ABC’s.
I put it on today for my youngest, now 2 years old, and enjoyed the video as if I were visiting with an old friend. I have always loved Sesame Street, since I was child. I have never outgrown it. Even as a young parent I used to watch it with my little ones. I love the humor. It is geared towards the adults anyway. Although I haven’t seen Sesame Street in years, I enjoy it as much now as ever. If you are looking for a video to introduce your child to the alphabet, this is still an excellent choice. My youngest enjoyed it as much as my oldest did 13 years ago.
I am including a link to the video from Amazon in case anyone is interested.
Today’s post has nothing to do with teaching babies to read. It does, however, deal with learning lessons, and today, I was the one who learned something.
My 2 year old wanted to wash the dishes. Since I had already finished washing the dishes, I offered to let her wash her play dishes in the bathtub, while she took a bath. She took me up on my offer and we filled the tub. Her bedroom is right next to the bathroom so I decided I should tackle the mess in the there while she played in the tub. What can I say? I am a woman that likes to multitask. Most days I ignore the mess that a 2 year old can create because of lack of time to clean it, but it was getting out of control and I needed to feel a bit of order in my life.
I could hear my daughter talking and singing as I went about organizing drawers and hanging up dress up clothes. I was feeling quite proud of my accomplishments, until I walked out of the bedroom to put something away. It was then that I learned my lesson. The lesson I learned was don’t leave your child alone in the bathtub without checking on them every two minutes, even if you can hear them singing and playing. It is not because of fear of her drowning that I need to check on her, it is for fear of her drowning me that I need to check on her. As I walked out of the bedroom, I could see a small lake pooling up at the entrance of the bathroom. She had been dumping cupfuls of water on her princess, who was standing on the edge of the tub.
The lesson I am continually reminded of in regards to life with kids is that as soon as you clean one mess up, they have another one waiting for you.
Gabriella the mischief maker.
My mother forwarded this to me in an email. It is so true. I just want to share it here on my blog.
When You’re the Mom of a Mother
By Beverly Beckham and Grandparents.com
When my older daughter became a mother nearly six years ago, I became a grandmother with a brand-new baby to love. But I also became a different kind of mother to my baby. I was useful again. I knew things. I understood. And the most important thing I understood was how much my daughter loved her child.
Ten months later, my younger daughter gave birth to her firstborn. “Did you feel this way, Mom? Isn’t it amazing? I never knew. Was I as cute?”
Motherhood, part two. That’s what grandparenting really is. Your kids grow up, go off to school, move away. And they don’t need you anymore. They don’t call for advice. And you think, you’re done. That’s it. The job is finished.
And then your kids become parents and you’re suddenly back in the game. “Mom, can you?” “Dad, will you?”
When a child is placed in a woman’s arms — in a hospital, at an airport, in a lawyer’s office, and whether the child is a newborn or a 10-year-old — a woman’s life changes forever.
And so does the life of her mother.
I watch my daughters wipe noses and hands, buckle car seats, peel grapes, insist upon “please” and “thank you,” wipe up spills, dry tears, read books, blow bubbles, monitor the TV, play games, and work outside their homes. And I am struck by the rigors of mothering — how hard it is and tiring and endless, and how amazing it is that anyone signs up for this job.
And then I think, this was once my job. I did all this. “How did you do it, Mom?” my daughters ask. And they listen to my answer because I’ve been down the road they’re on now and they realize that maybe I know a few things they have yet to learn.
The mother-child connection. It changes. It evolves. It grows.
In the space between us now there i
s still no space. It is filled with children — theirs, but part mine. And on it goes. Mother to mother to child, this eternal bond that is recognized and honored on Mother’s Day.
A member of my Yahoo Group recently posted something very insightful. She said instead of thinking that we are teaching our babies to read, do math, or whatever it is, we should consider what we are doing as enriching our children as much as possible. She likened it to planting little seeds. Some seeds might sprout up and we’ll see some results right away – others may take years to grow.
Here is what she had to say.
“I think whatever we are showing our children, they are soaking up like a sponge. Maybe if I show my son pictures of all the countries in the world and where they are on the globe – he might not show any interest and he might not name one country. Maybe I won’t see any result from that until he gets to Junior High or HIgh School – where suddenly he may show an interest in geography and other countries. He probably will never remember me showing him any of the power point presentations, but somehow later on he might have an interest in or a “giftedness” in an area.
So I’ve seen some parents on our board really worried if they are doing it right…Or should they use one method over another…Or getting frustrated when their child doesn’t show an interest…Or they are exhausted and frustrated with themselves for not doing more. I just want all those parents to know that their child is so blessed to have you for their parent – and anything you do to enrich your child is going to bless them later on. Do what you can when you can with a joyful and calm heart. Foster in your child a love for learning, but not at the expense of losing joy or anything else that is wonderful in your life. Plant little seeds and wait to see what fruit may one day grow. Sometimes not all seeds will sprout and grow – but the more you plant the more you have a chance that some will grow.
Most of all enjoy, enjoy, enjoy your child. They are only little for a short time and you never know how long you will be blessed to have them in your life. (We just had a child in our school die – and all I can think of is how lucky I am to have my son today – for this moment – if for some reason I don’t get to see him grow up and read and write and do math, etc – at least I was blessed to have him in my life for today. Remember – today is the only day we have!)”
Posted by Kristina from Alaska
Here is a poem that speaks volumes about the importance of parents reading to their children.
The Reading Mother
I had a Mother who read to me,
Sagas of pirates, who scoured the sea,
Cutlasses clenched in their yellow teeth,
“Blackbirds” stowed in the hold beneath.
I had a Mother who read me lays,
Of ancient and gallant and golden days;
Stories of Marmion and Ivanhoe,
Which every boy has a right to know.
I had a Mother who read me tales,
Of Celert the hound of the hills of Wales,
True to his trust till his tragic death,
Faithfulness blent with his final breath.
I had a Mother who read me the things,
That wholesome life to the boy heart brings
Stories that stir with an upward touch,
Oh, that each mother of boys were such.
You may have tangible wealth untold;
Caskets of jewels and coffers of gold.
Richer than I you can never be–
I had a Mother who read to me!
So many parents are concerned with teaching their children their ABC’s. What they may not realize is that knowing the names of the letters is somewhat pointless. If your baby knows their ABC’s before their first or second birthday, this won’t progress them in learning to read. It is much more important that babies or children learn the sound of the letters, as opposed to the names of the letters. Since babies have the ability to learn a multitude of things from birth to 5, you can teach them both the names of the letters and the sounds of the letters. If you are trying to decide which one is more important, teach them the sounds.
For example, you tell your child that that this letter “C” is “cuh”. Whenever you see the letter C, you say the sound. Your child learns that the letter “A” says “aaaa” like apple. You teach your child that the letter “T” says “tuh” as in tooth. When you put these sounds together they form a word. “Cuh”, “aaa”, “tuh”, makes the word cat. You repeat it a few times, more quickly with each repetition, and your child begins to understand that sounds work together to form words.
I was driving with my kids the other day and a bumper sticker caught my eye. It said,
“If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.”
Wow, that is profound. Think about it for a moment. We can spend money educating our children, starting as early as birth, and what do we get? Informed citizens. Thinking people. People that love to learn and are self-motivated. People that contribute to society. Leaders.
On the other side of the spectrum we have uneducated people. Think for a moment how easily the uneducated are taken advantage of. Think of all the opportunities that pass them by because they aren’t able to see them for what they are. They may be dependent. Lack confidence. Afraid to move out of their comfort zone.
When you weigh the choices, which one will you choose for your child? Education begins at birth. Some say it begins at conception. It is never too early to start your child’s education. What are you going to do today to educate your child?
When you set out to teach your baby anything, your attitude is the most important ingredient for success. Whether you want to teach your to read, or speak a foreign language, etc… your attitude will be the determining factor for your child’s success. Learning should be play. If we approach teaching our babies as though it were play, it then becomes a game for our children. Whatever you aim to teach your baby, make sure you factor fun and joy into your program. It is the most important element for success. What program you use and the material you choose to teach will have no relevance, if you don’t first make it fun.
When I think of small babies and the incredible power they
possess in their little brains, I am in awe. The old saying “Big things come in small packages” couldn’t
be more true when referring to the developing brain of babies. Babies possess the ability to master
any language that is presented to them.
They have the ability to learn to read, learn sign language and absorb
mass amounts of information. They
are capable of learning to swim, learn perfect pitch and become prodigies in
music. Babies are able to see
quantity instead of symbols for quantity.
Wow! That is just
Knowing that all babies possess this gift makes me have such
a reverence and respect for babies.
When I interact with babies, I consider them, not below me, as though I
possess the power to teach them something, but as a miracle of creation,
something to be wondered at. My
mantra for today is “Baby Power”.
What will you teach your baby today?