our KIDS

kidsOur children, to me, seem to have lost out on so much. Their World has become so planned and organized without any need on their part required.

They will never know the days of their grandparents who had no Internet and in some cases not even a television. They made their own entertainment and played not with store bought toys but their own imaginations.

Through no fault of their own today’s kids are born into an age of the Internet, gadgets that grab their attention from such an early age. It is almost like an addiction as we all, young, working age or retired have come to depend on it for whatever we do. Something as necessary as banking, shopping, researching information etc. and social media etc.

Children do not do as we say but as we do. If you are constantly on your phone they will also do just that.

Parents today are working harder to be everything, the best at work, having the best car and house, be best parent, cooking the most nutritious meals just to name a few. It is not possible to be the best at everything.

So who suffers? The children. Several years ago it used to be easy to allow them to watch a few innocent cartoons on television. They were happy while their parents were able to make supper.

Now while you keep trying to still get on with as many tasks as possible, you hand them the iPhone and get on with whatever you need to do. Quite often you assume they are on a safe site which can so often not be the case.

Nothing beats one on one time with your kids. Turning off all devices for an hour or two and just laughing together as you play a few games or do crafts. Some turn out, others not so much. The important part is just enjoying being together.

Before you know it you will be attending their graduation and wonder where the time went without those amazing memories.

Babysitting a young child we had unbelievable fun doing just that until at around 7 years old. Instead of a bag full of paper, markers & stickers, they arrived with an iPad, that precious one on one time gone forever.

Obviously it is the way we live, work and even do school work now so it is not as if we can ignore it. We love it.

All parents throughout the ages have said they were so happy they were not bringing up their grandchildren in whatever relevant year. Nowadays, children are facing things, they cannot fully understand having access to so much information as well as being aware on things talked about FaceBook or other Social Media pages.

Times change and we have to change with them but, nothing will ever replace being the solid foundation for your kids to grow up on. Just accept and incorporate what is current but keeping them grounded at the same time is a huge responsibility but worth every second. If you are in any position to wait until your child is in school for a full day before heading back to work, grab the opportunity.

Turning off your devices immediately after coming home and listening to whatever it is they have on their mind is priceless, building a bond and secure place for them.

The words in this song from quite some time ago says it all.

‘Toy land, toy land, beautiful girl and boy land

Once you pass its borders, you can never return again”

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Kids and Laughter

IMG_0403Kids Laughter

Nothing beats the sound of kids playing, giggling and having fun. It all so innocent, not yet weighted down by responsibility and time restrictions, if they can think of it, they just do it.

There was a song years and years ago from perhaps a movie but the words “Childhood, childhood, beautiful girl and boyhood” were part of the lyrics.

You do not hear that same happy sound outside much anymore. Used to be when school got out, the kids were running around playing tag, hide and seek, throwing a ball around and inventing a new game. If a park was close by, then they were on the swings, seesaw, or slide.

Occasionally a bump or scratch brought a few tears but a run home and Mom would patch them up and off they went again. Natural exercise, learning to share, or even have a bit of a squabble but working it out on their own. Daycare did not exist, Mom was home. The super feeling of security for a child needing a hug.

Depending of how many years ago, if it was a rainy day the coloring books came out, the toys, little cars or dolls to entertain. No television way back when our grandparents were kids. They thoroughly enjoyed what they had. A new toy made by grandparents made them so happy. Maybe granddad showed a young boy how to make a wooden car or gramma showing her granddaughter how to knit put smiles on their faces.

At school, you learned to respect your teacher, do your best to do well and if per chance you did something to annoy the class you were put outside the classroom to stand in the hallway or if you were really naughty a call home to Mom!! You knew that meant a serious reprimand, even telling Dad when he came home from work. You were taught consequences for actions.

Today school kids have to be picked up from school and so often that can even be a bus taking them to a daycare where they have to wait until their parents get home from work. Playtime has to be organized with “play dates”. Cannot just run down the street and knock on a friends door.

Our children are placed into so many activities each day of the week from dance or art class, gymnastics, maybe organized sports like baseball, hockey, maybe tennis or swimming.

Being active is fantastic and if possible should be part of their growing up but…sometimes way too much.

Our kids are overwhelmed with the demands made on them. It is up early and off to school or the wee ones dropped off at daycare with no time for a leisurely breakfast as their parents have to get to work. Other people are bringing them up. A babysitter is likely the person taking them to all these activities. Then back home to handle homework waiting for Mom or Dad to come home. All are tired and so often mealtime suffers as hunger has set in and no one wants to wait to eat. Often comes down to ordering delivery or hopping in the car to go to a fast food restaurant. no time for sharing each persons day,  the TV is on. Parents feel guilty and mentally promise themselves things will change, but can they?

Perhaps to compensate or who knows what, parents have sided with their kids over the complaints of their teachers and are off to the school to file complaints about the teacher instead. If a child is injured in even a minor way that activity gets banned from the school playground.

With the stress we all are under, the television or computer, iPhone etc have become the entertainment. Off to bed and it all starts again very early the next day.  And they cannot relate to anything their grandparents can tell them as it is beyond their imagination.

Although we all do the very best we can, which child had or has a better life? Grown kids today have become insensitive to others feelings. Is that because so many people have been involved in their growing up? The ideals their parents have for them become a mix of so many.

For all our advances, sometimes those simple times may have been right.

Memories

IMG_0373Memories. The moment you hear the word, suddenly so many things come to mind. Then when you start to think about “memories” your thoughts can go into so many directions.

Depending on how old you may be, family circumstances and whether they are happy ones does bring up the first response to your mind.

If you had a happy childhood then perhaps you are remembering yourself as as small child going to school on your first day, meeting a friend that you still keep in touch with, thinking how much you do as your parents did or maybe your grandparents, how they spoiled you. It IS the thing grandparents can be really good at!

They are a part of you and those memories should be cherished. Today people spend hours & sometimes a fair amount of money tracking down relatives online to find their heritage. Some of the results are amazing taking you to places you never imagined.

Maybe it makes you think about your own children, the day they were born, accomplishments however small that put a smile on your face.

Perhaps you have lost someone you loved dearly and are dealing with that grief. Again the happy memories will help you thru even if it sometimes may bring a tear.

One idea that can help is writing down all the fun things you did together or remember about them. It may even put a smile on your face. It will not take away that feeling of loss or grief but will definitely help you. Ask friends and family if they can send you some of their memories of that person.

So everything helps whether dealing with loss, having a chuckle about the silly things you have done or being able to share these thoughts with others, maybe you thank goodness for memories.

You actually are busy making your memories for others to remember you by.

As things come to mind on any given day, jot them down and start a file on your computer or even an old fashioned file where you have printed out those and filed them. As long as they are not left tucked away in your mind only, share all the moments.

Mother’s Day Musing

Mother DuckMore than 40 Countries honor their mothers on a special day. Many have chosen the 2nd Sunday in May for this.

In 1914, President Woodrow Wilson of the USA signed a bill proclaiming the 2nd Sunday in May as a National holiday.

Some Countries have celebrated honoring Mothers for a very long time for religious reasons, others even due to military participation.

For me, my Mom is the person that I most admire. I will not go into why, but that is how I feel. I won the lottery with having her as my Mom. She was THE most important person in my life. She “got it,” and understood and celebrated me as unique.

If you are fortunate enough to have grown up with your Mom, you are very blessed. If you did not, then I hope someone filled that role for you. Whoever that person is, they played a priceless part of your life.

Moms know how to comfort us, have eyes in the back of their heads, seem to know everything that is going on, and even reprimand us when we deserve it. And although we might have complained along the way, when we grew up we realized she mostly got it right.

They always say that babies do not come with a set of instructions, but neither do Moms. Moms just “know,” as though the moment you hold your precious baby for the first time, everything clicks in.

We can reflect on all the serious sides of our Moms, her accomplishments, etc., but today I mostly remember laughing at all the funny things we did or had together. Sometimes I laughed when I really should not have but we had a crazy sense of humor. There are so many funny memories that I will forever cherish.

So wherever you live, and whether Mother’s Day has been celebrated or is still to come, enjoy your memories, have a chat, or go out for a latte. You may never find anyone who loves, or has loved you, so unconditionally.