Monday, October 29, 2012

Bad Nanny

I was so shocked and terribly saddened this morning when I came across this news. A nanny in New York, apparently stabbed to death the two kids that she was paid to look after and tried to commit suicide herself. I can't imagine the horror that Maria Krim, the mother of the kids, had when she arrived home from the swimming lessons of her other child only to find that her two other kids are dead. 

This only made me even firm on not hiring a yaya. This is just one of mine and hubby's worst fears on hiring one. I know most of the yayas here in the Philippines love the children they are taking care of, I was even raised by a number of yayas given that both of my parents were working when I was young. But, times are different now. Before, it was easy to find a good-hearted yaya who who'd love your kids as if they're her own. Now, even the yayas from the agencies cannot be trusted.

We are lucky that we have my mother-in-law living with us to take care of Johan while hubby and I go to work and we have my parents as back-up caretakers should my mother-in-law had to go somewhere.

Maria Krim is a stay-at-home mom who just had to be with her other child that fateful day when tragedy happened. It is best not to judge because we all do not want nor expect bad things to happen to our children when they're out of our sight. I just read more than a few negative comments about Maria Krim and how she's a bad mother for leaving her kids with a nanny. These negative comments doesn't help in any way nor does they ease the grief that the Krim's are going through right now. Let's offer prayers instead of judgement, please.

I am a mom. Though I don't know how it feels how to lose a child, I still get chills in my bones with just the thought of it and I, in all honesty, am not sure how I would cope. I don't even know if I could move on, I'll probably go crazy. I don't really know. That's why I'm praying for Maria and Kevin Krim - I pray that they both be blessed with strength in this time of mourning and hopefully, may justice be served.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Imperfect Super Nanay

What's the meaning of perfect anyway?

Adjective: Having all the required or desirable elements, qualities, or characteristics; as good as it is possible to be.
Verb: Make (something) completely free from faults or defects, or as close to such a condition as possible.

Even though I know I excel on some things, there will always be other things that I'm sure I'll struggle at. Like parenting. One can only be good at it up to some point but there are no perfect parents. Including myself. So, here is the Super Nanay's own list of imperfections. I know you can relate. :)

1. I breastfed my son for only three months. I'm sure most moms can relate to this. I have been judged for not breastfeeding my son longer than I did and I have been tagged a bad mother because of that. If given the choice, I would have breastfed Johan for at least two years because I am aware of the benefits of breastfeeding. But, my milk dwindled on the third month until it eventually stopped flowing.

2. I allow my kid to watch TV. Our TV time at home is most probably longer than yours in your own homes.  Though, I control what programs my son watches, there are more than a few times that I allow him unlimited TV time.

3. I let my son eat french fries... and hotdog and cake and doughnut and ice cream and chocolates, just because. Yeah, you can go tsk tsking  now because I find myself tsk tsking too when I had to give in to my son's choices of food.

4. I allow him to have my drinks - from Frappe to Milk Teas to the not-so-freshly squeezed pineapple juice that you can buy at any fast food restaurants. Again, just because.

5. I scold my son. Not too loudly though, but I feel bad every time I had to and for me, that's me being imperfect.

As I've said, nobody's perfect. I am not a perfect mother and I know I never will. What I am aiming for is not to be one, but to be a good role model that my son can look up to, to be the best mother I can possibly be for him and to just love him unconditionally with all my heart.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

How does a domain work?

I've been thinking about purchasing my own domain but then I realized I know nothing about it actually. Can somebody help me please? I would really, really love to be part of the .com community but I don't know what to consider in getting my own domain. Here are a few questions that I came up with:

1. Where to purchase and how much? I am gearing towards purchasing the cheapest possible.
2. How would it affect this blog on Will everything I've written be imported to the .com?
3. What's the guarantee that I'll get more traffic with a .com?
4. How do I design a .com? Any leads on good web designers that don't charge so much?
5. How long does a domain registration last? Is it a year?

All comments will be highly appreciated. Thank you!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Motherhood Truths

In the two years that I've been a mother, I can say that I have learned a few things. Probably, not as much as those with two kids or more or those who are mothers longer than I've been one but still, I hope some moms would learn a thing or two from my list.

You will feel guilty. Maybe not always but there will come a time when you leave your child at home to go have some "me" time and you'd hear that incriminating voice in your head asking, "How could you?". I heard that voice, more than a few times, when I badly needed some alone time or whenever me and hubby escape for a quick movie date. You don't have reason to feel bad. All moms need even a short amount of "away" time for us to recharge our energies. You'll have mommy burn out if you don't.

You will become unsociable. Most especially during those first few months after giving birth because you will be sleep-deprived caring for you newborn, very tired after doing all the household chores and quite frustrated for wanting a little romantic time with your husband which unfortunately never happens. Choosing sleep over a night out is called for and I'm sure your friends would understand that.

You will be selfless. Once you become a mother, instinctively, you will put your kid's needs over your own. When I was single, all I could think of every payday is that new bag that I've been eyeing for so long or those killer pair of high heels that (though I'm sure my feet would really hurt wearing them) I've been dying to buy. Now, all I could think of every payday is my son's milk and diapers. I can't even remember the last time I bought myself a new pair of jeans or a good-fitting blouse because every time I look at the price tag of the things I've been meaning to buy for myself, I am reminded that one blouse costs as much as a week's worth of Johan's milk. So, I put off buying myself some new things.

Your patience will be tested. Again and again. My toddler sometimes seems to confuse the word "No!" to "Go!". Whenever I tell him to stop, he tends to do the opposite thing and ignore me. Remember that my son just turned two years old, imagine how it'll be when he turns a year older. Ohh, I am so prepping myself for that magical word, "Why?".

You will be judged.  Be it by other moms or non-moms. You parenting skills will be on constant scrutiny and you'll continuously receive unsolicited advice on how it is best to raise your own kid. My own unsolicited advice: be polite, be firm and move on. Unless you're going to actually do what you were advised to do, it is best to bite your tongue, maybe just say "Thanks, but no thanks" then walk away. It is for everybody's peace of mind, believe me.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Struggles at the Supermarket

My husband and I do our groceries monthly. We do this to minimize our trips to the supermarket thereby saving on fuel. We usually leave our son at home so we could complete everything on our list but for the last three months or so, we've been bringing Johan with us to the supermarket.

Yesterday, we decided to do our grocery shopping a week earlier than usual. We brought Johan with us and as expected, it was a riot!

He made all the biscuit containers into drums

He wanted to help Mommy so he kept on putting things in our cart

Then he wanted to help Daddy with the cart

But all he really wanted was to get in the cart

I enjoyed a momentary silence when we passed by an aisle with a little LCD screen
showing a product commercial

And of course, he just have to turn that roulette

Johan having the time of his life

My boy has been his usual, naughty self when we were at the supermarket. He kept on putting stuff in our cart, wanted to get inside the cart when it was already full so I went and got an empty cart that he can get in, and he kept turning that roulette over and over. Good thing is that the lady manning the roulette found my son  too cute, she even gave him a balloon.

But, seriously, with my son's overactive personality, bringing him to the grocery is no easy task. I was confronted with the constant urge to scold him when he's being so makulit. What I did to keep the boy preoccupied sure helped us finish our grocery shopping without losing any of our cool, here are some of them:

  1. Let the kid help. When Johan started to grab things and put all that into our cart, I called him and asked him to help mommy with some stuff - I let him carry small boxes of soap, sachets of fabric conditioner, shampoo -  and allow him to put these necessary stuff in our cart.
  2. I ask him to look for some items - while we're at the milk aisle, I asked him where his milk was or I told him to get a toothbrush while we're at the oral health aisle.
  3. Dance. It is great that supermarkets now play music in the background so when my son heard Oppa Gangnam Style, he immediately stopped what he was doing and jumped his heart out.
  4. Teach the kid some manners. Whenever we see another child or a supermarket employee looking Johan's way, I tell my son to say Hi. I also taught him to say "Excuse me" and "Thank you".
  5. Charm people. My son used to be so shy around people but he's been a little sociable lately and I cannot be more than glad that he's finally coming out of his shell. He's charmed some supermarket employees by his dancing, waving, answering "two" when asked how old he is and saying "A-ya!" when asked what his name is.

Grocery shopping, so far, has never went smoothly when Johan's with us. But, it sure did make it more interesting and well, yes, fun.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Leaving the Kids at Day Care Centers

How many mommies actually leave their kids at the mall day care centers? I am tempted, honestly, just so I could shop in peace, try on some shoes without somebody tugging my hand to go out of the store or choose a few clothes without a little boy playing hide and seek behind the clothes racks.

We did let our son play at the mall day care centers, twice or thrice already, but it is usually with me going inside as well. What keeps me from leaving him alone is fear. I am scared that he'd hurt himself while playing or another kid would hurt him because the attendants might not be paying as much attention as I would have had or worse, he'll be taken away, kidnapped by some bad guys.

Are my fears irrational? Some say I may be like this because my son is too young to be left alone in a day care center but I've heard stories that some moms actually leave their kids as young as one year old. I know that in my case it'll only be for an hour or so while I'm shopping but still I cannot bear the thought of leaving Johan alone. I am constantly reminded of all the bad things that could possibly happen to Johan while I am not around and those possibilities are more than enough reason for me not to leave him by himself at the mall day care centers.

What are your thoughts?

Friday, October 19, 2012

From SAHM to Working Mom - The Big Switch

I had to quit working when I got pregnant with my son because of some complications. After giving birth, me and my husband decided that I'll stay home to take care of the baby. We didn't talk about when will I get back to working and never did he pressure me to work again, besides, I love being with my son 24/7.

The Reveal
Now, here goes the being honest part. Don't get me wrong, I loved being a SAHM, I really did. What I didn't like about it is the monotony of it all. I have been working since I graduated from college and I didn't stop working until I became pregnant. I love the constant challenges at work, the friendships I made, the knowledge that I gained and since I'm being honest, I loved the money that comes in every payday. When I stayed home, I had very little access to the outside world aside from Yahoo Messenger and Facebook. I was tied at home caring for the baby, running a household and I was swamped with all the chores that needed to be done.

I once posted in my family blog, Lifetime of Togetherness, how undomesticated I am. I still am though I'm sure I've improved in some areas. But, I realized I am not an effective parent when I was a SAHM. I've had melt downs, my self esteem went below critical level, I was starting to become unhappy because I felt that I cannot reach my full potential if I stay at home and realistically, my husband and I have big dreams for our family and we cannot reach our goals if only one of us is working.

The Mommy Wars
I was told, when I was still a SAHM, that I was being stupid for not working again, that the baby is not reason enough to stay at home and waste my college degree on. I get uncomfortable silence when I was asked what I do for a living and I answer, "I'm staying home with my son." I think, and I would forever believe so, that being a stay at home mother is the hardest of all jobs. It is not something you could instantly walk out off, there are no sick leaves nor vacation leaves, there are no fixed schedules and a bunch of other stuff. I could go on and on, but ultimately, I think that being a stay at home mom is the most noble and the bravest thing a woman can do.

Now that I'm working again, I still get unwanted comments like - how could I leave my son at home, I am being materialistic for wanting more and worst, I am not a good mother. Those comments are enough to make one furious but I chose not to get affected as much. After months of working again, I realized, I am a better parent to my son.Our time together, during weekends, are most appreciated and guaranteed great moments because we missed each other all week. I am also a better person with fewer melt downs (yes, I still have those once in a while), I am happier, I am contented and my self esteem is back up. I also know for a fact, that I can now give my son a better future - with mine and hubby's income combined, we can now save more for the little boy's education, needs and a few wants.

The Conclusion
Simply, different strokes for different folks -just because being a SAHM works for one means that it'll work for the other and the same goes for being a working mom. Each person is different, with different views, different needs. In my case, being a working mom works for me better than me being a SAHM but does it mean that I am any less of a mother? Most definitely not! Yes, I am not perfect and I have shortcomings. But, who is perfect and who does not have any shortcomings? Nobody.

For now, I will remain a working mother but I am not closing my doors to going back to being a SAHM. If my son needs me back at home then I will quit my job in an instant but until that time comes, I will continue working and build a secure future for him. Besides, my own mother worked full time until I was in fourth year high school yet I turned out okay. My son will be fine because working or not, I am still his mother and I make sure he knows I love him and that what I am doing is not only for myself but for the best of him and our family.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Oral Hygiene 101

When Johan's teeth erupted, I started researching on the best method to introduce oral hygiene to my boy. He's had a total of three different toothbrushes and only used one brand of toothpaste. So far, his favorite brush is this Firefly toothbrush that lights up. I bought this at Watson's for, I think, Php 250.00.

We tried a lot of techniques, believe me, to make the kid enjoy tooth brushing and even if he does enjoy it at times, I cannot honestly say that I've been entirely successful. There are still a few times when I had to hold both of his hands down to be able to brush his teeth. I downloaded a lot of fun videos about tooth brushing that I let him watch, before and during, just so he'll have an idea on what I'm doing.

These days, I instruct my MIL to brush Johan's teeth during bath times and since I'm not home during the week days to know if it's being done and yes, because I'm simply OC this way, I brush his teeth again (twice!) when I arrive home at night.

I still can't say that I have been successful but we're getting there. I am yet to prepare Johan for his first dentist visit and I think I will be more scared than he would be. I don't think I'm prepared to face the stress that his crying will bring. Oh he will cry definitely, I'm sure of that.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Kids and Escalators


What is it about escalators that draw the kids towards them? My son is no different. Every time we go to the mall, he would either pull me or his daddy towards the escalator and go for a "ride".

I am very vigilant about looking after Johan when we go to the mall because I'm scared that what happened to the kid who got injured when his arm got stuck in the escalator would happen to my son. The thought of it even sends chills to my bones.

Imagine my horror when last Sunday as we went to nearby SM, in just a blink of an eye, I saw my son running towards the escalator going up. I don't know if it's adrenaline rush or what, but I sprinted! I actually did ran my fastest just so I could catch up with Johan and like in the movies, it was like everything went into slow motion and I reached him as soon as his foot stepped on the floor plates of the escalator.

I think my heart stopped beating the whole time I was running towards him. It scared the hell out of me, I tell ya. In the end, we both went up the escalator and went back down again, with the little boy jumping in glee not knowing his mom is near tears and on the brink of having a heart attack.


My mom told me to buy something like the one on the photo so I could keep Johan close every time we go out. But, I'm still thinking about it because it gives me the impression that my son would look like a dog on a leash. Apologies to the moms who use this product, it's just my personal opinion which might just change in the future. By the way, can you give me some feedback on the product?

Monday, October 15, 2012

Getting Informed on K-12

"What?! Additional years in school? Hindi kaya magsawa na ang mga bata mag-aral nyan?"
Yes, that was my initial reaction when I first heard about K-12 or the Kindergarten and 12 years of basic education that is now being implemented in some schools, public schools specifically.

Honestly, I don't know much about the program except that it meant additional tuition fees to pay and longer school years for the kids. It's a good thing that while I was visiting some of the mommy blogs that I follow, I chanced upon Chronicles of a Nursing Mom's post K-12 for Private Schools and there I learned more about  the K-12 Program.

The K-12 primarily covers Kindergarten to 12 years of basic education - 6 years of primary education, four years of Junior High School and two years of Senior High School.

The curriculum will also be adjusted in this program which means some of the subjects that are being taught in High School before will be integrated in the lower levels. Subjects like Biology, Geometry, Earth Science, Chemistry, and Algebra will now be taught from Grades 7-10 under the K-12 program. Another great concept that I highly agree to in K-12 is that the Senior High School will be made suitable to prepare the students on what courses to take in college based on their interests, skills and capacities. The students will also undergo On-The-Job Training or OJT to enable them to experience first-hand their chosen track which I think will be really helpful in gearing the students towards being responsible adults.

The only thing that I think is imperative in this program is minimizing the shortages of classrooms in public schools. We've seen it in the news time and time again and I think we all agree that no student can learn enough in a classroom packed with 70+ students. It is just not possible for one teacher to address all the educational needs of that huge number of kids and that is the reason why my husband and I both agree to send our son to a private school instead of a public one. Well, that might just change if the ratio of teacher vs students in public schools drops to at least 1:40. It is feasible if only the government can provide enough classrooms and train more teachers.


Personally, I think the K-12 program is promising and if given the chance to succeed, it is really beneficial to both parents and students. Yes, it might mean additional years in school but ultimately, it is one with every parents' goal for their children: to mold them into better, successful and educated individuals.

Be informed and learn more about the K-12 Program by clicking here.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The Resurrection of the Super Nanay

I know I have neglected this blog for so long and to think that it has been one of my dreams to put up something like this.

I look up to other mommy bloggers - Frances of Topaz Horizon, Martine of Dainty Mom, Chris of Mommy Matters and Fleur of Mommy Fleur - among many others, though, I know I am far from being a mommy blogger per se, it would be nice to be able to write helpful and sensible content for readers, moms or non-mom alike.

So, I am resurrecting this blog. I will work hard (and pray harder!) that I'd be able to post new topics everyday and I aim to be as honest as I could possibly can.

Please bear with me?