Back to school, back to blogging

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It's been 3 weeks since we've returned from our month "long" vacation and children started school. Between a month which I wouldn't get myself to sit in front of the computer to blog because I was vacationing and another month I couldn't sit in front of the computer to blog due to back-to-school craziness, it was one of the longest blogging hiatus … [Read more...]

Eight

Every year, writing a birthday post gets harder. Explosion of feelings that my children ignite inside my chest, every minute, every hour, cannot be explained in one post. I am definitely one lucky mother, of two of the greatest kids ever. And my firstborn, my son, is turning 8 today. I am in total disbelief that I am a mother of an 8-year … [Read more...]

How to get your children help clean-up

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Every weekend, children - have to - cleanup and organize their own living and playing areas. Then 5 minutes later, until next weekend, they run around like a tornado and we end up with a house like a bomb exploded in the middle. Now that they are 7 and 5, I do not clean up their territories anymore. Unfortunately, they do not keep it tidy or they … [Read more...]

Her brain vs. his brain

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I like yoga but I can hardly meditate. I cannot empty my mind. I never understood how one could not think about anything. A big example: my husband When I and my husband first started to date I would talk and he would listen. (Later on, he figured he needed to talk to shut me up) There would be long pauses of (awkward for me) silence, when I … [Read more...]

“First think, then act” status update

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It's been more than a month, since we've completed the “First think, then act” program in February. I wanted to share the results with you. I also learned that today is "National Siblings Day". The month of February was a work-in-progress. My beloved kids really tried to work on the communication, mostly because they did want to get a green icon … [Read more...]

Sibling Relationship: Making new habits

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For the last few weeks, my son and daughter literally lost their capabilities to communicate and getting along well. The constant bickering, stubbornness, competition, disrespect and fights got worse. Not only did we lose our peace in our home that but they carried their unacceptable behavior out of the house to family visits and public … [Read more...]

“Taste it once” rule

My kids aren't picky - luckily - and they have a good appetite. However, time to time, when they are offered new food or dishes, they might be reluctant to try. My son is a little bit sensitive to smell and texture in taste. My daughter, might refuse either to imitate her brother, or just because she's decided so. It sometimes works other way … [Read more...]

Why I love family vacation

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After 7 days of teachers union strike, public schools started 2012-2013 school year today. The extended summer break came to an end. Before the summer break, among most of the parents around me and on the blogs that I read, the main consensus about vacation was “a vacation is not a vacation when it's with kids”. I seem to be the one of the few … [Read more...]

Tired of thinking

I get tired of having to think and having to make decisions on many small things, every day, instead of the actual physical chores and errands. I feel like my brain is steaming from all the thinking: what to prepare for breakfast what to prepare for snack bag what to put in the backpack for activities of the day how to answer "I don't … [Read more...]

My educational utopia

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In yesterday's post I wrote on various educational philosophies and the certain aspects of which I like about these philosophies, was the summary of what my children learn at their school, the research I have done to learn what I can provide them better as well as things I came across due to selective attention. As I wrote yesterday, I think it … [Read more...]

A world without praise and encouragement

When you hear from experts on education and discipline, there is a big issue surrounding the use of  "Good Job!", aka praise. There is a really bad stigma around praise, almost as much as veral or physical abuse. Ok, I might be exaggerating a bit, but repetitive praise is widely cited as an obstacle character development. All the books I have read … [Read more...]

The armchair’s flight, the end of the fight

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We have one sofa and one armchair in our living room. This is our one and only armchair. The kids argue and even sometimes fight over who's going to sit on it. If they are in a good mood, they sit on it together. It is wide enough to fit them both comfortably. However, sometimes they get stubborn. Some days, I ignore them and wait out until they … [Read more...]

An ordinary day – Dinner Delight

Continuing from An ordinary day – Breakfast and leaving home I need to show up at school pick up time with snacks. My son would be incredibly hungry and he can't  wait until we get home. I usually pack a home-made burger, a sandwich, or couple of granola bars. On Mondays, my son has gym classes.  When I am pick him up, his first questions … [Read more...]

An ordinary day – Breakfast and leaving home

Continuing from An ordinary day, Good Morning. After trying out different methods for years, with trial and error, I learned that best way to manage kid's menu is (a) offer two alternatives, prepare/cook what your child chooses or (b) offer two alternatives but sell them what you want them to eat in a sneaky way. In the worst case … [Read more...]

An ordinary day – Good Morning

From the narrow window of my blog, our life might seem pretty easy and relaxed since I mostly write how I manage to do multiple things, share practical ideas, and solutions around the life with children. If I come up with a good post, it means that, I had to  struggle and stumble and finally find a way to get through the emotional and physical … [Read more...]

Practical Parenting in Real Life

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This blog, like many other parenting blogs, is like a small stage of our real lives. Especially Practical Mama, not being a personal / diary blog, reflects very limited portion of the daily hustle. I share tips and tricks that I try and find helpful after so many trials and errors. That means there is a lot of trial and error going on behind the … [Read more...]

Time management and planning tools for parents

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Time management is very important for me. It doesn't mean I am super skilled in time management. On the contrary, I totally suck at it. One major flaw that I have is that I get easily distracted. I think about zillion unrelated things while I am trying to work on a task. I leave that task in the middle and move on to something else. Unless I … [Read more...]

House rules poster for children

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Lately, sharing and jealousy issues have drastically escalated between the siblings. Big brother has been less than cooperative and agreeable. As usual, I started thinking about proactive solutions or help them find their own solutions. Sibling rivalry, as I have accepted, is inevitable. My daughter is more interactive and she is trying to do … [Read more...]