Saturday, December 29, 2012

New Year, New Accomplishments

While many people might consider New Year's Resolutions overrated creating one with your little one could serve as a beneficial teaching moment as a lesson in setting goals.

For example, you could have your child set a realistic goal for their resolution with tasks/steps and deadlines to actually accomplish or keep it.  It's an excellent idea to create a checklist and as your little lady or fellow completes a task/step have them check it.  This will encourage them to keep their resolution and feel a sense of accomplishment.

While these tips can help a child learn to set goals, trying them out yourself may even help you keep your New Year's Resolution (for once) and result in a handy plan of action for your own goals.

Have a Happy New Year from the Urban Nurturing Team!

Monday, November 12, 2012

Loss of Wisdom

Editorial Spotlight
By Renee Jamerson

Last week, I had the pleasure of getting all 4 of my Wisdom Teeth removed.  I say this reluctantly, but the actual process was a lot less painful than expected and have to admit that the healing process seems to be the nightmare.  Oddly enough, the bottom two teeth were the worst, complete with hooked roots (Uggghhh); which for some reason surprised my doctor who upon abstraction of the first one commented, "no fair that's not supposed to look like that", as he proudly held my blood-drenched tooth with his prongs.  

After leaving, I hurriedly filled my prescription of Percocets.  It was only while reading the label that it hit me that as a Mother of 4 young girls the next couple of days was going to be interesting.  Let me explain, you see, while my Husband is a wonderful, caring and loving Father; like most of the Mothers out their I am the sole caretaker of our 4 girls.  Maybe it's because the amount of estrogen produced by these 4 tiny females combined with their time-stopping spats and, lets just be honest, close to Civil War magnitude battles my poor husband is out-numbered and often beaten to a pulp. How was I going to go through the next couple of days high on Percocets and still function as a Mother.  

While it is still impossible to feel the left half of my lower lip, I am happy to say today I am on Day 5 and I survived with minimal pain.  Thanks to the collaborated efforts of my Dear Husband and my Mother-In-Law!  Though we practically had to uproot my family for a couple of days (LOL), I am today, Percocet free and capable of a half smile...if I try hard enough.  

There's my story, what's yours? Who is your support system when you find yourself yelling "Mommy Down"?!?!?!?!?


Monday, September 17, 2012

Self-Soothing - A form of neglect??

By Renee Jamerson

Recently there was a lot of talk in the news about the benefits of allowing your baby to "self-soothe" as they call it.  A recent study showed that babies who were allowed to cry awhile were under no more stress than a baby who wasn't.  The point of the study was to prove that self-soothing is okay for the baby and is a great way to build self-reliance.  It was however proven amongst a group of Moms that continuous crying actually stressed the mom more than the baby (well duh).

I have to say I fall into that category.  I like these Moms experience anxiety at the sound of my babies cry.  A lot of people believe that responding to a baby's every beckoning makes the child spoiled.  I happen to believe that it maks them feel secure.  I want my children to know that despite whatever they may go through "Mommy is here" and we'll get through it together. 

I believe that children can learn self-reliance at a later date when it is more comprehensible.  For example, Kindergarten.  And while this may cause some pre-school teachers to cringe.  Most children go through separation anxiety when they start school anyway and then learn self-reliance.  So in the end why put so much pressure on a tiny person who can't verbalize what they want, need or feel?  They depend on us for their every need and even comfort.  So I think I speak for a lot of Moms when I say self-soothe, smelf-smoothe (tttthhhhpppptt)!

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Thursday, August 9, 2012

Talking To vs. Talking At, What's the difference?

By Renee Jamerson

While in conversation with a friend of mine, who has dedicated his life to Youth Development, the topic of "Parents talking to their children and why it's important" came up .  I always take time on the weekends to reflect on whether or not I spent the week "talking to" my children or "talking at" them.  There is a difference that a lot of parents don't realize. 

Coming from a background of Southern roots my mother was often "talked at" by her parents and never really "talked to".  Against the criticism of a lot of the older generation, my Mother made it a point to talk to us.  Not to say that we weren't often "talked at".  As a parent in this busy society it is almost unavoidable the habit of "talking at" our children.  Why? Between juggling work, bills, relationships, and other children it is easier to bark an order of what you want done rather explaining why we need it done.  That's when those damning replies of "because I said so" or the plain old retorical "because" come in. 

Needless to say, talking to your children builds worthwhile relationships and keep the lines of communication open for when they reach that point in life where they might not want to share everything.  It also ensure that they have a reliable source of information throughout life.  Let's face it what they don't learn from you they will learn from TV, their friends, or other older folk that might not be the best role model. 

Talking to our children is not only important for those teen years, but also in early development.  Studies have shown that babies who have parents that speak to them have higher IQs than children who were not spoken by their caregivers.  It has been proven that talking to your baby advances their vocabulary, understanding, and ability to express themselves clearly.  Speaking first hand, I totally agree with these facts.  My daughters are able to express their wants, needs and thoughts in clear sentences, while having other adults understand them.  People are always shocked when I tell them that my youngest is only 2 years old after having been told of one our of many and most funny conversations. 

So, despite what you may have heard talk, talk, and talk some more because simply stating "because I said so" isn't good enough if you want to raise smart, articulate and trustworthy children.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Love & Hip Hop Atlanta, All Too Real!

While its never easy to tell what in Reality TV is real and what is scripted, we can all agree that last nights premiere of Love & Hip Hop ATL left us all in a state of "Oh Hellz Naw!" For those of you that missed it we got our first intro to the relationship of Stevie J and his longtime girlfriend and "Baby Momma", Mimi.  According to her clips Stevie J is constantly creeping and obviously getting caught.  Last night, we found out that he is currently creeping with Joseline, although both parties denied a kiss witnessed by another Cast Member.  I think it was pretty clear from Joseline's clips that she has bedded Mr. J.  The part that was so astonishing was that even after having such a bombshell dropped on her Mimi was still trying to hold on to Stevie, while he basically said forget her and their daughter.  This pointed out a key issue that many women deal with in society.  While many watched that episode and proclaimed "what they would have done".  Many of us know someone, either are or have been in a similar situations.  But why?  There are lots of reasons but here are few. 

#1: Biggest Myth: All Men Cheat
Despite popular belief all men don't cheat! There are men out there that actually value their bodies and what they have to offer. 

#2: For the Children
Many women stay with cheating men for the sake of their children.  Not wanting to break up the family or raise their child alone.  When the truth is that a cheating man will only drive you nuts! You can't trust him so you go crazy trying to catch him which only distracts you from what is really important...the children. Let it go!

#3: Afraid to be Alone
Many women fear not being in a relationship; failing to realize that a relationship with yourself is the most valuable thing you can have before having one with anyone else.

#4: I can change him
Wrong! No one changes unless they want to and continuing to be someone's fool only makes a fool out of you, why? Because they'll do it again!

#5: What if someone else gets him
Well then good...Now he's her problem.

As Women and Mothers we must realize that just because a man gives you a child it doesn't mean you have to put up with crap.  No one should treat you like crap because they feel indispensable or needed because of a child. That's Mental Abuse!  Better to be a Single Mother than a Bad Mother by giving your children (especially daughters) the impression that love is abusive!