Saturday Sidebar: How do you intend to celebrate your year-end holidays?

Saturday Sidebar: How do you intend to celebrate your year-end holidays?

This week’s Saturday Sidebar Question comes from World Moms Blog writer Purnima.  She asked our writers,

How do you intend to spend your year end holidays?”

Check out what some of our World Moms had to say…

World Mom, Jennifer Prestholdt and her family celebrating their holidays

World Mom, Jennifer Prestholdt and her family celebrating their holidays

Hamakkomommy of Japan writes:
“Christmas in Japan can be kind of sad if it falls on a weekday. This year, I am planning to spend the day with a fellow gaijin friend and her family. New Years is the main holiday here. The days leading up to it will be spent cleaning (apparently the lucky new year god doesn’t come to dirty houses.) On Jan 1st, we’ll head over to the in-laws house around 8 AM for a traditional meal, the traditional sake, followed by the traditional sake-induced speech my father-in-law gives every year. After that, we usually head to a local park for kite flying (which is done on New Years for some reason.) Kids get money from relatives, so we’ll probably end the day at the toy store with temper tantrums and hangovers.” (more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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INDONESIA:  Mothering A Sensitive Child

INDONESIA: Mothering A Sensitive Child

My son is not even 6 years old. He’s a December baby. Who knew this would be a dilemma once they’re around school age? This means that he either starts school a little early or a little late.

We opted for the latter.

Yes, he is the eldest in his class: K2. His physique looks bigger than those of kids his age. He is one of the taller and older kids in his class. Most people think he’s way older than 5 years old.

Yet he still has that babyish side on him.

Do I get frustrated? Of course!

He is a sensitive child, always been. He cries easily, and he tends to be shy around new people. This is something that I noticed since he was a baby.

Both of us, his parents, are very outgoing borderline crazy-loud sometimes! It  makes me feel guilty when I see him get so shy. Sometimes, he just shuts himself down, not wanting to say or do anything. When he was much younger, a full blown tantrum was a common, daily thing. These days, he prefers to just not say anything, closes his eyes or just pretends to be sleeping. (more…)

Maureen

Founder of Single Moms Indonesia, community leader and builder. Deeply passionate about women empowerment.

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ISRAEL: Far From The End — Coping with the Missiles Attacks in the South

ISRAEL: Far From The End — Coping with the Missiles Attacks in the South

“Start packing.” He tells me on the phone. “It’s gonna get crazy here!”
“Really? Just pack up and leave?”
Yes,” he repeats. “I’ll be home in ten minutes.”

I’m feeding the baby, and my older son is playing outside. I hesitate for a second, then summon him. You can continue playing outside, I explain in a composed voice, but promise me, the minute you hear the siren you come in. OK?

He smiles at me, makes the promise, don’t worry mommy. Calms me down. For a second I wonder if our roles might be reversed.

I start folding the clothing. What should I take? This horrible weather. November and still hot. Need to plan for any type of weather. And my daughter is being toilet trained. Need lots of extra clothes.

What’s taking you so long? You don’t understand how serious this is, do you?

Not really. More serious than what it’s been until now? We’ve been living with the missiles for years, even though these last months have been crazy.

We don’t have a proper bomb shelter. We can’t take a four-month-old baby to a public shelter. We can’t stay in rocket range. Then I hear the explosions. Though distant, their impact is felt. So close my husband brings the children in the house. “Stay here,” he commands, “until we finish loading the car. The sirens are going to start soon.”

(more…)

World Moms Blog

World Moms Blog is an award winning website which writes from over 30 countries on the topics of motherhood, culture, human rights and social good. Over 70 international contributors share their stories from around the globe, bonded by the common thread of motherhood and wanting a better world for their children. World Moms Blog was listed by Forbes Woman as one of the "Best 100 Websites for Women 2012 & 2013" and also called a "must read" by the NY Times Motherlode in 2013. Our Senior Editor in India, Purnima Ramakrishnan, was awarded the BlogHer International Activist Award in 2013.

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SOUTH AFRICA: International Internet Love….Fact or Fiction?

SOUTH AFRICA: International Internet Love….Fact or Fiction?

We’ve all heard and read ad nauseum about “internet predators.” Whilst, of course we need to take precautions, we should be careful not to throw out the baby with the bathwater! After all there are predators in bars and nightclubs too!

I’m the proud mother of a very smart (and slightly socially awkward) son who will be 20 years old in January 2013. As a toddler and young child people called him “slow to warm up”. In other words, he was the little boy hanging on my pant leg for at least 30 minutes or so in a new environment. He never really dated anyone and chose to go to his Matric Dance (like a Prom) with a couple of his mates rather than ask a girl to go with him! Oh … did I mention that he could type on a keyboard before he learnt to write? Yup, computers have featured prominently in his life since he was about 3 years old!

Just over a year ago he “met” a young lady whilst playing an online “multi-player role playing game.” Over a period of approximately 8 months of playing, video-chatting every night on Skype, Facebook posts, etc., my son and this young lady changed their Facebook status to “in a relationship”. (more…)

Mamma Simona (South Africa)

Mamma Simona was born in Rome (Italy) but has lived in Cape Town (South Africa) since she was 8 years old. She studied French at school but says she’s forgotten most of it! She speaks Italian, English and Afrikaans. Even though Italian is the first language she learned, she considers English her "home" language as it's the language she's most comfortable in. She is happily married and the proud mother of 2 terrific teenagers! She also shares her home with 2 cats and 2 dogs ... all rescues. Mamma Simona has worked in such diverse fields as Childcare, Tourism, Library Services, Optometry, Sales and Admin! (With stints of SAHM in-between). She’s really looking forward to the day she can give up her current Admin job and devote herself entirely to blogging and (eventually) being a full-time grandmother!

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HUMAN RIGHTS: Speaking the Language

HUMAN RIGHTS: Speaking the Language

Sometimes I have trouble finding the words to talk to my kids about the violence that hear about in the news, the injustices that they see in our own community.  As a human rights lawyer, it is my job is to document and expose human rights abuses. But I have always struggled with how to communicate to my kids what human rights are and why they should care about them.

Recently, however, I was preparing for a project that involved interviewing children about their experiences.  Experts advise that interviewers use simple language when speaking with children about difficult topics.  “Simple language” means avoiding big words, of  course, but it also means using simple, direct sentences.  Straight-forward grammar – subject and predicate in sentences; basic speech parts – nouns and verbs and adjectives.  I suddenly realized what I was doing wrong in talking about human rights with my kids. Rather than explaining complicated concepts, what I needed to do was break it down to the core values that everyone needs to live fully in this world. I needed to start with the basic building blocks of language: words. (more…)

Jennifer Prestholdt (USA)

Jennifer Prestholdt is a lawyer and the Deputy Director of The Advocates for Human Rights, a volunteer-based human rights organization that works locally, nationally and internationally. Her work in human rights takes her around the world, but she spends most of her time in Minneapolis, MN, where she lives with her children (two sons and one daughter), her husband, an elderly cat and a dwarf hamster.

As Jennifer’s kids are now all in school (1st, 4th and 6th grades), she is finally finding more time to do the things that she used to love to do, especially running, writing and knitting. Jennifer loves to travel and has had the dubious distinction of having been accidentally locked in a bathroom on five continents so far. Australia and Antarctica await!

In January 2011, Jennifer made a New Year’s Resolution to start writing about her experiences in order to share with her children the lessons learned from 15 years of work in human rights. The result is her personal blog, The Human Rights Warrior. The name comes from her son Simon, who was extremely disappointed to learn that his mother is a lawyer, not a warrior.

You can find her on her blog The Human Rights Warrior or on Twitter @Jprestholdt.

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