REPOSTING: The 101 on Connecting with Your In-Laws by MomCenter.PH

I LOVE this article and I learned a lot! Read on...

Dad, Mom, Baby… and In-Laws? The 101 on Connecting with Your In-Laws

It’s part of our culture to maintain close ties with extended family. More often than not, we grow up playing with our cousins, always seeing our titos and titas, and spending time with our grandparents. Hence, when we say ‘family,’ we refer to almost all the relatives we know.

Thus, more often than not, we know that our own children will be brought up knowing their extended families. These extended families include not only relatives from our side, but also from that of our husband.

Once a baby is born, the two families become more deeply connected. Married or not, our baby links these two families. We can’t ignore the fact that there’s a whole other side of the family our baby is related to, and so this should motivate us to develop these relationships or at the very least, maintain civil connections.

So how do we beat the myth (often a lie) that our in-laws are out to get us?

1. Get to know your in-laws. For me, when I look at my husband, I realize how grateful I am for my in-laws who raised him to be a man of steadfast faith, honesty, and commitment. In getting to know my in-laws, I get to know my husband more. I’m sure many of you can relate. It doesn’t have to be complicated. One way to get to know your in-laws is to engage in conversations with them and discover their likes, dislikes, hobbies, etc.

If you’re married, you didn’t just marry your husband, you also married his family. Your husband is who and what he is because of his roots.

2. Be present in their events and celebrations. Take note of important occasions like birthdays and anniversaries. Attend family gatherings. Just as we want our husband to attend our side’s special occasions, they also want us to be there in their side’s celebrations.

When you do attend, make sure that you’re really there. Be present in mind and body: interact and celebrate with them.

3. Never start a fight. It’s a general rule that we ought to choose our battles wisely. As moms, we have our own parenting styles and non-negotiables. There may be times when our in-laws might take a different approach in interacting with our children. Let’s face it – as a rule, grandparents will spoil our children. For the most part, we can let them, but when it comes to our non-negotiables or when our parental authority becomes confusing to our kids, then we should take our stand without having to fight with them.

If there’s something about your in-laws that contradicts your non-negotiables, it’s best to first talk to your husband. He would be in a better position to discuss issues with his side.

4. Learn to listen. Our own side will be giving a lot of unsolicited advice on marriage and parenting. So will our in-laws. If we really listen, we’ll realize that most of them actually make sense. Not all the advice may be practical or applicable, but they make sense if we consider their own experiences.

You don’t have to apply everything your in-laws say but listening will actually help you. You’ll learn more than you expect – not just about marriage and parenting, but also about your husband. So don’t be so quick to dismiss what your in-laws have to say. Listen to them as much as you’d want them to listen to you.

5. Allow them to spend time with your child. Your bundle of joy is a bundle of joy to them as well. Let them play with your kid and take care of him/her while you’re at work or on date night. Let them get to know and be proud of your child. But don’t expect them to discipline your kid and fulfill all your parental duties. Disciplining your child is a shared responsibility between you and your husband.

6. Let them get to know you too. In order for all of you to truly be a family, you need to be comfortable around them. You can only do this by letting them get to know who you are as a wife, as a mom, and as a person. Share your interests and experiences with them and be honest with them. There’s no perfect woman, so don’t waste your energy trying to be one in front of your in-laws. Be yourself. You owe that to your husband, your child, and most especially, yourself.

7. Spend time with them and do things together. When you’re comfortable enough, spend time with your in-laws even if your husband or child isn’t there. Have coffee with them, shop with your MIL/SIL, call them up just to talk, share recipes, plan parties or trips with them, etc. Your relationship with your husband and the existence of your child illustrate that you must have similar interests with your in-laws. Don’t be afraid to be part of their family in the same way that you want your husband to be comfortable with yours.

It’s comforting to realize that your in-laws are also part of your support group, that they too are your family. Of course, this may be hard for some, considering each mama’s unique story, but it’s not impossible to attain.

We don’t need to live in fear, anger, hesitation, or uneasiness around our in-laws. We’re already connected to them and there’s no harm in trying to make the best out of it for the sake of our husband, for the sake of our children, for our own sake, and for the sake of our family.

SOURCE.

Our Different Coffee Breaks for the last Couple of Months

Check out our coffee breaks for the last few months.


Ah, yes! We are definitely coffee lovers! (*wink*)(*wink*)


This is by far one of the highlights of our day lately...COFFEE!


And now, I'm off to have another cup.

How about you? What adds value to your life these days?


Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. New ebooks! YEY!
2. Celebrating Hubby's Birthday
3. Soccer Tournament
4. Movie Date with the Whole Family
5. Mlik Tea and Popcorn
6. Rest
7. Helpers
8. Freshly Brewed Coffee
9. Blogging
10. Project Life App

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

Coffee TIME.

My favorite time of the day is the start of the work day. WHY?

Because of this...


C.O.F.F.E.E. T.I.M.E.!

I just love smelling the freshly brewed coffee in my coffee mug. The feeling of excitement and the feeling after drinking it. Yes, it is definitely my favorite time of the day!

How about you? What's your favorite time of the day?

The Most Beautiful Things in Life...


Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: It's Good to be Alive by Benji Jackson feat Pinkzebra

REPOSTING: You Deserve it! Easy Ideas for Quick Me-time Moments for Moms by Michelene Lagdameo of MomCenter.PH

Itching for a Me time, Moms? You don't have to go somewhere, check out these tips grabbed from MomCenter.PH...

You Deserve it! Easy Ideas for Quick Me-time Moments for Moms by Michelene Lagdameo

Ask any mama and she will tell you that a whole day (or weekend, even!) to herself to do absolutely everything she wants is all she wants for her birthday, Mother’s Day, and Christmas! Free time is a concept that most moms crave the most, and the truth it, we honestly deserve it. However, any mama will also tell you that a whole day free of responsibilities is entirely too unfeasible (which is why it’s often reserved for the aforementioned birthday, Mother’s Day, and other special holidays!)

There’s no need to neglect your self-care, though. You can carve out some me-time daily—even just 30 minutes of time for yourself can work wonders in restoring your sanity and giving you time to decompress. Here are inexpensive and easy ideas for busy moms who need to catch a break.

DIY Spa in The Bathroom


Take 30 minutes to light a nice scented candle or two, stream some soothing music on Spotify, and apply a calming sheet mask in the comfort of your bathroom. You can easily buy facial masks from beauty stores, or you can make your own organic mask with simple pantry ingredients!

YouTube Workout
Whether you want soothing yoga or high-intensity dance, there are quick and detailed workout videos easily searchable online. Prop up your phone or iPad and follow along, no equipment or gym membership required! Also, you can download several free apps like NTC or Sworkit, so you next “gym session” is waiting for you right on your phone.

Daily Devotional

Invest in a daily devotional book or download guides off the internet. You can set aside time in a quiet space to read a passage or two, reflect on the daily lesson, and note a few points (or pour out a few feelings) on a journal. It can be as spiritual as you want—check out The Power of A Praying Wife—or even something as simple as The Happiness Project.

Coffee, Tea, and Me

Brew yourself a cup of coffee or tea and just breathe for a bit! If you have a favorite spot at home, or like to hang out in your kitchen, allow yourself a few uninterrupted moments of peace while the smell of coffee or tea wafts all around you. The smell is known to energize you as you go through the rest of your day!

Color Therapy

The adult coloring book craze may be a little over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t reap the calming benefits of letting your artistic side show. Half an hour is enough time to completely color a simple illustration, and you’ll love the sense of accomplishment it will give you.

Regardless of how you spend your “break time,” the important thing is never to feel guilty about it—mamas need to look out for themselves too! So invest time in what makes you smile, even if it’s just for a few minutes each day. You’ll be a happier and healthier mom for it, and you family will feel the difference.

SOURCE.

Kidzania for the Kid's 2016 Birthday Celebration

How did we celebrate a kids' birthday last year? We went to Kidzania!

And, since this is already their third time, they already have their favorite booths!


Made deliveries for parcels...


Someone's dreaming of being a Pet Doctor someday!


And look the Dad is enjoying too.


And the highlight for this trip to kidzania...


The Hall of Justice. Wow. It was indeed a fun day for all of us!


Would we ever come back again? Yes and hopefully soon!

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Relaxing Weekend
2. Long Naps!
3. eBooks and hard to put down stories!
4. Freshly Brewed Coffee on a Wednesday
5. Households
6. Prayers
7. Never ending Blessings ♥♥♥
8. Plans for the year
9. Workouts
10. Bright Future

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

One Foggy Weekend in Tagaytay

A couple of months ago, Hubby and I went to Tagaytay to attend a Marriage Encounter Retreat. It was the month of October so we were excited that the weather would turn cold.

Look!


Well, it was foggy and the weather was just RIGHT.

Here's a nice welcome treat from the hotel...


And then the highlight of our retreat - The Renewal of Vows.



Happy to get married again with this guy! (*wink*)


It was a fun weekend. Hopefully we can attend again this year!

It may Hurt to LET GO, But...


Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: The One by The Chainsmokers ♥

Came across this beautiful song that I thought be best to share here...


Have a blessed Sunday, everyone!

REPOSTING: 5 Simple Tips on How to Make the Most out of Your Long Weekends by MomCenter.PH

Here's another nice article from MomCenter.PH about how to make the most out of long weekends. Because YES! there are a lot of long weekends coming really, really soon. WOOT!

Read on...

5 Simple Tips on How to Make the Most out of Your Long Weekends by MomCenter.PH

Whether you’re a working mom or a stay at home mom, the long weekend is a reason for celebration because it always means that the entire family is complete, for one extra day in the week.

Long weekends are a wonderful opportunity to spend focused and quality time with our loved ones, and thus must not be taken for granted. The last thing any of us want is to wake up the day after the long weekend wishing we had spent it better.

Here are some tips from momcenter on how to make the most out of your long weekends:

Do something different. If the idea of escaping city life appeals to you, then drive out to a nearby province and spend some time in nature. You will find your entire family refreshed and re-energized for the week ahead. The one thing that you will be risking by doing this however is getting stuck in traffic. Thus, be strategic about your departure times, and bring plenty of food and entertainment for the kids in case you spend a lot of time in the car.

Plan well.
The long weekends scheduled for the next year are usually released during the last quarter of the current year. Plot them out on your calendars so that you can schedule leaves, book tickets for your trips and activities, and plan your itineraries in advance. You won’t just save time, but money as well!

Disconnect. If you can, put away your laptop, tablet, and mobile phone. Use your extra day of rest to take a break from everything that might trigger any feelings of anxiety or stress. Be intentional about avoiding any distractions that could potentially take your focus off the ones who matter most to you.

Choose your battles. As the mom, you can set the tone and mood for your family’s trip. Even if your kids are cranky and your husband is impatient, if you can…let the small stuff slide because if you allow yourself to be provoked, you will only add to whatever tension might be building in your family. Make the trip one that is memorable in a good way, by keeping spirits positive and high. The only way you can do this is by setting the best example.

Be flexible. While making plans might be key to achieving what you set out to do during the long weekend, they can also backfire if we become too rigid about our goals. If all of a sudden a child gets sick, or a storm hits, let go of of what you can’t control with a smile and choose to make the most of the weekend by being fun and spontaneous instead. At the end of the day, it is not so much what you do, but who you are with that makes a long weekend worthwhile.

SOURCE.

Attended a Starwars Birthday Party!

...and the kids were ecstatic. LOOK!


Can you believe this?


A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.!


Wow the feeling that she got to study sword fighting with Princess Lea!


Priceless!



And look, even if they got home, they still couldn't moved on. They played with the giveaways and costumes provided...


Surreal! But yes, it was a real party and one of the best! Thank you Migo for having us! ♥♥♥

Wednesday Happy Thoughts

Happiness is...

1. Relaxing Weekend
2. Sister Act!
3. Family ♥
4. Freshly Brewed Coffee on a Monday morning
5. Back to School
6. Jobs and Online Tasks
7. New eBooks
8. Free Time
9. Nice and helpful Articles
10. Level 4 Happiness ♥♥♥

To know how this started and credits of the header, click here.

Loving...

Check out my second grader's sweet poem.


Yes, I'm one proud Mama!

Minimalism Removes Excess...


Sharing a Song this SUNDAY: Love on Me by Galantis & Hook N Sling

Ever feel like dancing today?

Let's do it!

REPOSTING: 7 Ways to Build Stronger Connections with Your Kids (Even When You’re Busy) By Kathryn Trudeau

Here's another nice article to read this weekend. Read on, parents!

7 Ways to Build Stronger Connections with Your Kids (Even When You’re Busy) By Kathryn Trudeau

Dr. Harley Rotbart, author of No Regrets Parenting, reminds us that there are only a mere 940 Saturdays from your child’s birth day until the day he or she turns 18 years old. Nine hundred and forty. That’s it. The statistic is enough to make you start planning family outings and picnics from now until 2026.

But… I have a complaint. Nine hundred and forty days is not nearly enough to bond and create enough memories to last a lifetime. As parents, we are blessed with 6,570 days from birth until the age of 18, why not take advantage of each and every one of those days? Sure, the weekdays are busy, crazy, messy, and loud, but that’s no reason to relegate all the bonding to just Saturdays.

Here are seven ways to build stronger connections with your kids, even when you’re crazy busy:
Reading together.

Studies consistently show that reading to children promotes healthy brain development and improves literacy skills. Reading, however, can be as much of a bonding experience as a learning experience.

Try to carve out at least 10 minutes a day to read together. Even reading a short bedtime story can do wonders for reconnecting with your child during a busy workweek. Have a pre-teen or teen? Let them choose a chapter book and read it together, even if it’s just a few pages per night.

Connect at bedtime.

With babies and young toddlers, parents often fuss over finding the perfect bedtime routine to get baby to sleep, but bedtime is just as important for older children too. Bedtime is a great opportunity to reconnect with your kids, especially after a busy day.

As you tuck your child into bed, give him or her an extra hug or cuddle. Hum a lullaby that reminds your child of when he or she was a baby. Listen if your child has any last minute stories or questions.

It’s all too easy to rush bedtime in order to have a few minutes of peace to ourselves – believe me, I know. But some of the best moments of the day are hidden in the soft, sweet moments between awake and slumber.
Touch.

Both parent-instincts and science tell us that loving touch is important. From building self-esteem and boosting brain development, gentle caressing or loving touches can also help build connections with our kids. Touch is extremely easy to sneak into busy schedules.

Exchange a secret handshake as you pass each other in the hallway.
A hug first thing in the morning, before departing each other, upon reuniting, before bed.
A kiss on the forehead as you serve dinner
Cuddling together on the couch as you unwind with a show at night (or… a book).
A pat on the back for a job well done.

Turn dinner into a sacred family space

It’s easy to let technology sneak onto the family dinner table, but in an effort to fully focus on each other, make it a point to make dinner a tech-free zone. Instead, use the time to connect with each other.

Growing up, my parents started a tradition called “Best Thing, Worst Thing.” We would go around the table and say what the best and worst part of our day was. It’s truly amazing what we can learn about each other when we actively listen.
Play a game, even if it’s just for a few minutes

Between homework, extracurricular activities, and household responsibilities, fun activities like family game night sometimes get pushed to the back burner. But, there are ways to play games, even on the busiest of days.

One of the favorites in my house is called “I’m Thinking Of,” a spinoff of “I Spy” except the object doesn’t have to be physically present. We usually play this game while driving. It entertains the boys during the drive, but also gives us a chance to reconnect. Win, win!

Make eye contact

This might seem silly or obvious, but making eye contact with your child is the easiest way to reconnect when you’re short on time. Eye contact reinforces the idea that “I’m taking the time to really look at you.” Looking into each others eyes is a soulful way to communicate an I love you without speaking.

When my older son is in the midst of a meltdown and struggling to manage his emotions, I always remind him to look into my eyes. He usually does and when his bright eyes look into mine, we connect and he’s able to find peace.

Laugh together

Psychology Today reports that laughing with another person helps to form a strong connection because “laughter establishes – or restores – a positive emotional climate and a sense of connection between two people.” Even if you’re stressed from a day at work, or tired from a day of chores, fitting in a laugh is a good way to reconnect with your kids.

Tell a funny story while you wash dinner dishes. Make silly faces at each other. Tell your kids a family inside joke.

Not every day is perfect. Sometimes we let the stresses of the day rule us, but our children will appreciate our efforts to connect with them – whether they realize it yet or not. Try to incorporate these tips into your daily routines, and you’ll be sure to feel a stronger connection with your children.

SOURCE.