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Seven tips guaranteed to transform you into a good parent.

We often wonder especially before we become parents how we were going to cope when the children start to arrive, what we would need to do to make a success of parenting.Well there is good news; from my own experience I have discovered that children’s wants are indeed very few and within reach. Let us examine these seven tips that are ‘sure bankers’ and have been proved to work over and over again without fail and see if you won’t be transformed.

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T3 sound asleep after an interesting bedtime story.

1. Come into their bedroom at night, tuck them in, tell them a bedtime story, sing them a song. This has worked even on  T2, my most independent and carefree one. I overheard her talking to T1

T2: ” Guess what happened last night?”

T1: “What ?”.

T2: With a broad smile, “Mum came to hang out”.

So little effort on my part making so much impact.

2.Tell them stories about when you were little. I tell you, there are no stories as interesting as those ones and surely every parent should have some stories to tell.

3. Spend quality time with them or just one of them at a time. For example its mid-term break period in Nigeria right now, T1 and T2 went with their friends to the cinema on Wednesday,(for the first time without me following them), and on Thursday, I had a date with T3 (my soon to be nine year old) to the same cinema  to see Disney ‘Frozen’. The look on her face? Priceless.

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Edi-ka-ikong

4. Cook something nice and special. It does not have to be expensive or your ‘catering practical’ type of dish. In the past I have gotten away with ‘puff puff’ ‘moin-moin’ ikokore, edi-ka-ikong’ ‘isi ewu’ and dough nut and ice cream. Let them join in the preparation, it fosters bonding like magic.

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T3 and a friend playing some water games

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Me, as spiderman or was it a tiger? Anyway we had fun

5. .Let them play outside a lot. especially in this technology driven age of game consoles, TV, electronic gadgets etc, their chances of outdoor play is being eroded more and more. I have taught my children how to play ten-ten ,one of my childhood games, we also sometimes have showers in our swimsuits in the garden with the garden hose. There are lots of other outdoor activities.

6. Cuddle under the blanket and watch TV or any nice film together. in fact this is what triggered this post. Just yesterday we (the four of us) snuggled under a duvet and watched ‘You again’ together.

7. Discipline them. You will be surprised to know that  they don’t mind, it makes them feel that you care especially if you have introduced this measure early and they have gotten used to it from scratch, they will prefer it to being ignored if they know they have done something that should attract discipline.

If your child falls in a higher age bracket, do not despair, if you did all the above in the past, you have already built a solid foundation. If not, there are still lots of activities and ideas that can bring about a closer relationship. The bottom line is bonding.

How are you faring?

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I am a bad mum!

Image by T1, the eldest of my brood.(Please  note that this image was done ‘voluntarily’)

I am a bad mum. Now lets call a spade a spade and not a farming equipment, bad is bad, it has no other name, there is no point beating about the bush. How did I find myself in this position? After all before I started having children I had promised my unborn children that I was going to be the best  mum any woman can ever be, but I don’t know, whether it is genes, or as they say nowadays; the way I am wired, or the tradition passed down to me through my mum and her own mum before her, I just know that I have turned out to be a bad mum and not one of those trending ‘what’s up’ mums. And why is this so?

1. I do not watch television and neither will I allow my children to watch (except during the holidays) despite the fact that we have up to 7 sets in my house, I will however allow visitors and their children to watch instead of my own children.

2. I do not sleep and will not allow my children to sleep, I wake them up 4 am every week day to read a little before getting ready for school, whether they have examinations or not and I stay up with them to make sure they do not sneak back to bed.

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Nice vegetable soup

3. Breakfast in my house does not have to be your traditional breakfast like toast, cereal akamu and the like especially if we just cooked some nice vegetable soup the previous day, we could have eba, or even ikokore, we have sometimes had isi ewu in the morning even on a school day.

4. I follow my driver on school runs on the pretext that I am afraid my children might pick abusive words etc from the driver while other cool kids are not followed all over the place by their mums.

5. I poke my nose into everything that goes on in my children’s school and make it a point of duty to know every one of their teachers by their names, I put them through up to four years of torture by being their school’s PTA chair person and it seemed as if they saw my face everywhere they turned to in school at that period.

6. While other mums join fashionable departments in the church like Ushering, Choir and Greeters, I joined Sunday School and make them carry Bibles and big books all over church.

7. Cool mums spend their weekends partying and going out, I spend most of mine with them and I refuse to give them the breathing space they crave.

8. I drill their friends so hard when they come visiting that I have almost turned our house into a no-go area.

9. While most mums cannot differentiate between browser and trouser, I succeeded in removing all the browsers (safari, google chrome etc) that came with their gadgets and installed what I call child friendly and they call childish browsers and I also check their browsing history from time to time.

10. I insist and vehemently too that they must not call any man ‘uncle’ as has become the norm in Nigeria, except those men are related to me or their dad, ‘Mr’ is a better option.

11. And as if these is not enough, I recently started blogging and they told me something tells them this my new craze is only because of them and  that I will most likely be revealing their secrets.Can you imagine that?

12. That I am so ‘bush’ that I refuse to allow them use slangs like ‘whatever’, ‘duh’, ‘whats up’ and the like when addressing me or any adult for that matter.

13. My children are of the opinion that I am so unrelenting that I will not hesitate to add other measures to aid me on ‘my so-called parenting duties’.

But you know what? I don’t think I am about to change anything soon and something tells me that my children would not exchange me for anything in the whole wide world(so they confess to me grudgingly once in a awhile). Chikena.

Some good news however, I have been told that some mums are even badder worse than I am like for example, they would not allow their kids wear trousers except they are male of course, I allow my girls to wear and I also wear trousers.

This is however not to say that other parenting styles are not appreciated, after all there are different routes to a destination, are n’t there?

Now what about you, are you a bad mum or dad too? Or are you planning on becoming one?

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Facial expression as a type of parenting skill

Reblogged due to ‘popular demand’

whatkindofchildisthis

There is a general agreement among sociologists and psychologists that the face, voice, body posture and hand gestures, forecast to outside observers what people will do next. By extension children or rather “well brought up” children are expected to be able to read every of their parents’ facial expression, voice tone, body posture and hand gesture and use such as a guide as to what is expected of them in any given situation.  When we were growing up, most of the communication between us and our parents were non- verbal and woe betide you if you were not able to decipher / decode any of such messages because you would pay dearly for it. In fact our parents did little or no talking to us, except when we are being reprimanded for one wrong doing or the other, all the talking they did was to adults like themselves.

The human…

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