Mother’s Day is fast approaching, and we’re getting ahead of the mad scramble for presents (which usually results in a hurriedly purchased card and bunch of flowers) with suggestions for every mom in your life. I, for one, am guilty of completely forgetting Mother’s Day until the Friday before. So, here are some ideas to get you started with enough time for standard shipping.
We all know the importance of reading to young children, and bedtime stories have been a nightly ritual even when our kids were toddlers and would rather chew on the books than listen to them. However, we seem to think that once children learn to read on their own we do not need to read aloud to them anymore. This falls by the wayside especially as homework and extra-curricular activities vie for our attention. According to Scholastic’s “Kids and Family Reading Report”, more than half of children from the ages 0-5 are read aloud at home 5-7 days a week. This falls to 34% at ages 6-8, and 17% at ages 9-11. Even though my older daughter can easily read books by herself, she still loves being read to at night. It has been a ritual for us and bedtime just isn’t complete without a story or two. Yet it is so much more than that, these are some of the reasons it is important to read aloud to older kids:
Every day, they stared at me, full of reproach. My running shoes have been sitting in my small roller suitcase, wrapped in a plastic bag, since August of last year. I brought them on a family vacation, feeling overly optimistic that they would get used on the trail that ran near our rented beach condo. On the upside, they were spared the layer of dust that coated everything during our kitchen reno.
When we found out that we were pregnant again, one of the first questions that came to mind was, “When should my mom fly in from the Philippines?” My mom has been there for the births of all my sister’s and my children. Though not in the delivery room with me (in many hospitals in the Philippines, no family members are allowed in the room during delivery—not even husbands—so the concept is somewhat strange for my mom) she’s helped get everything ready for baby and given Mr. D and me some extra snooze time after the babies’ births.
When you announce that you’re pregnant, people first ask: “When are you due?” Then, it’s “Do you know the baby’s gender?” Finally, they ask “Do you have a name picked out?” I believe names are important and, more often than not, imbued with meaning. There are reasons why there are so many baby name books and websites—we want our children’s names to somehow set them on a certain course before they’re even born. Sometimes, as girls, there are names we love and keep in our hearts for when we eventually have children. We cross our fingers and hope that no one close to us names their child that name before we can.