What Being a Mom Really Means

The decision to become a mom is the choice to become the most powerful person in a child’s life and is beyond calculation. It’s carrying and caring for a life that’s completely relying on mom not only for survival, but to uplift them and to, among other things, teach them the hard rules of life. Being a mother is also the most challenging and rewarding relationship a woman will ever have.  And so, I’m inspired by great moms and salute all of the extra efforts they make for the sake of their children.

Nowadays, though, it seems we figuratively pat moms on the head, buy them flowers and the perfect mushy cards on Mother’s Day.  However, when all is said and done, we don’t really show them nearly as much respect as we would a doctor, a lawyer or a therapist despite their complicated role. In fact, women who choose to be stay-at-home moms are often referred to as “just a mom.”  Even if they opt to work full-time while raising children or stay home with their little ones, we need to understand that any mom-shaming related to the decision to mother effectively undermines female empowerment considering all that moms are required to do.

Safety and Security

Mostly it is mom’s job to be a protector, providing a healthy and safe environment in her womb while her baby develops.  This responsibility continues once her baby enters the world, whether it’s guaranteeing her babe-in-arms has a sturdy roof over its head or keeping the Boogeyman away at night and everything else in between.

Some of you may feel as if I am forgetting about fathers and other influential relationships between children and close family members and teachers. After all they say it takes a village to raise a child, right? Although that is true, I am sure we all can agree that it’s not “a village” that a young child cries for when he or she is distressed. You, mom, are usually the dependable person your baby can run to with all of their problems.  If you can’t make everything better, then who else can?

If a child has been holding it together all day, in an unpleasant and difficult situation, usually the minute their teary eyes land on your face, they know they can finally relax and release their bottled feelings on you, as a mom is an emotional blankie for a child to have permission to keep their emotions 100% real. Plus, most moms can usually sense when their child is feeling troubled. Often lending an open ear and just letting him or her talk freely about the worry can help a child move quickly beyond it. When mom reduces her child’s risks and stress, this helps to firmly support their spiritual, mental and emotional development and physical health. When a child isn’t constantly worried that something devastating is going to happen, he or she learns to have faith. Their nervous system is calm and relaxed, and they can sleep more soundly and their mind can heal their body in a natural way as well, whereas a child who does not feel safe typically becomes withdrawn, has difficulty concentrating and/or overreacts to inconsequential problems.

Unconditional Love and Affection

On top, a child’s self-image is greatly influenced by their emotional relationship to mom. The first instances of self-awareness are experienced through seeing themselves in the mirror of their mom’s eyes and through her words and actions— how she touches and holds her child. If this is coupled with love and affection, her child feels on cloud nine as the earliest seeds of healthy self-esteem are being sowed. Early attachments also form a child’s mental pictures of how relationships function in the world. A lack of maternal warmth and validation distorts their sense of self, making them lack trust in, or be wary of, close emotional connections. That’s because a child’s need for its mother’s love is a primal driving force, and that need does not lessen with unavailability. Actually it exists side by side with the understanding that the one woman who is supposed to love you without condition doesn’t. The work it takes to heal and deal with that reality is hard to say the least. It has an effect on many parts of the self but mostly in the area of relationships.

Life Coach and Mentor

A mom also has the power to instill in her child a sense of right and wrong, and when he or she internalizes that, mom almost becomes her child’s conscience. If your conscience is always your playmate and never tells you when you are in the wrong, you’ll most likely going grow up with little, if any, respect for authority.  Too, being a mom means developing and perfecting “the mom look” that paralyzes misbehavior–that uncompromising glare that says, “one more time and …. ”  Certainly you want your child to love you and have fun and be open with you and not live in fear of you.  To live in fear is to not live at all. However, you also want to encourage ethical values and set boundaries. More often than not, it’s just what they need and want.

Of course, there are days that are terrible and certainly test your patience, and then there are those great days where you pass with honors. That’s why, like any top level job, you have to bring all your own gifts,  qualities, research and experiences to the role of mother to reap the rewards that go beyond changing diapers and washing dishes and that can truly change your life for the better.  Your actions must also be in unison with what you desire, believe and value as a mother because the world can only value mothering to the degree good moms affirm that it should be so.  You moms out there hold the keys to the doors that open up the perception of motherhood. As we support you, and as you remind those around you to hold you in high regard, you honor and reverence both the moms whose shoulders you have stood on and the daughters who will in the future stand steady on yours.


#babyplus, #mothersday, #moms, #momstobe  # motherhood

How To Boost A Child’s Focus And Attention Span

The ability to focus can determine your life’s direction and even your ability to accomplish goals or develop new habits. Early in life most children have shorter attention spans than adults.  Some children, however, have far more problems focusing and staying on task than others. This lack of focus may prevent them from realizing their full potential later in life.  A healthy attention span is often necessary not only for academic success but also for creative and athletic endeavors as well.

The good news is the gift of focus can be cultivated early in life through enriching the child’s environment with the right sounds at the right time and by choosing activities at home which encourage focus and attention.

Age Appropriate Puzzles

First, putting together puzzles helps to boost a child’s concentration as he or she develops.  When selecting them be sure to pick age appropriate choices.  For children under the age of two, offer wooden knobbed puzzles that are outlines of simple shapes and fit easily into board cutouts.  Next, your child can move on to puzzles with more complex images. Cartoon characters, musical instruments and transportation illustrations are always a hit with toddlers. Allow them to choose the puzzles they like. Doing so can increase the amount of time a puzzle receives, heightening concentration. When children work on puzzles they enjoy, they often will develop strategies to finish the puzzle efficiently–doing all the edge pieces first, for instance, or separating the pieces according to colors.

Physical Activities

Next, increasing a child’s fitness level can do wonders for their attention span.  A large randomized controlled trial in the US examined the effects of daily afterschool sports activities over a school year. As the children got in better shape, they also became more proficient at multitasking, ignoring distractions and retaining information.

Furthermore, when physical activity is used as a break from academic learning time this can result in improved on-task behaviors, healthier attention spans, and enhanced academic performance.

Parents can play a pivotal role encouraging their children to become physically active by helping them choose activities that get their heart rate up.  Below are some ideas to consider:

  • Dancing: ballet, hip hop, modern, tap
  • Martial arts: boxing, karate, kick boxing, taekwondo
  • Racket sports: badminton, tennis, ping pong, squash
  • Recess games: dodge ball , playing tag, skipping, red rover
  • Skating: skateboarding, in-line skating
  • Team sports: basketball, football, hockey, soccer

Foods and Supplements

Often overlooked, over indulging in foods like bacon, popcorn and soda and junk food with little nutritional density can affect a child’s ability to focus and cause brain fog.  Incorporating foods that naturally contain Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) such as fatty fish (i.e. sardines, salmon and mackerel) in your child’s diet can has been proven to improve concentration naturally.  If your child is not a big fan of fish, DHA fish oil supplements are widely available for children.

Equally as dangerous, a magnesium deficiency can bring about decreased attention span and mental confusion.  This much need mineral calms the brain down and helps children to focus.  Foods that are high in magnesium include dark leafy greens, quinoa, cashews and walnuts.

Foods containing B vitamins can improve alertness in children. Vitamin B12 deficiency may cause low energy, which in turn lessens the ability to focus.  And so, be sure that your child is getting adequate amounts of healthy animal proteins, such as grass-fed beef and lamb loaded with B12. Choline, another B vitamin, helps with development of memory stem cells and is readily available in eggs.

A study published in Magnesium Research in 2006 found that giving ADHD-diagnosed children a cocktail of magnesium and vitamin B6 significantly improved inattentiveness.  B6 is found in foods like avocados, pistachios, turkey, meats and whole grains.

Remove Distractions

No child should be living like a scattered grad student surrounded by clutter. Keeping an orderly living space creates an environment that is structured and cultivates a child’s ability to increase his or her attention span and focus on one activity at a time.  It is, therefore, important to not only round up the toys, clothes, crafts etc at the end of the day, but to teach your child to put away things once finished. This also includes putting away all the screens—television, smart phones, tablet computers and especially game consoles.

While there are clear benefits that come with using electronic media, over-exposure can have a negative impact on attention. In a 2010 study, the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the children (ages 8-18), outside of school time, spend practically every moment of the day using electronic devices. Whatever happened to ‘go and play outside’? If you want to save your child from becoming a disappointing statistic, set some sensible daily time limits. Once your child reaches the limit, suggest they go outside and spend time in nature.  Last Child in the Woods is a great book for parents to read. It deals with children growing up in a culture bombarded with electronic media, disconnected from nature. The book makes a compelling case for children playing in the great outdoors.

A Good Night’s Sleep

Like adults, children need sleep to enable their minds to reboot and focus. Unlike adults, a drowsy child can’t wind down quickly. In fact, in children sleepiness can resemble ADHD symptoms.  They behave as if they’re not exhausted at all, resisting bedtime and becoming increasingly hyper as the evening progresses. This all too familiar drama can happen simply because the child is overtired.  Children who sleep less than ten hours per night before age three are more likely to be easily distracted and are three times more prone to developing hyperactivity and impulsivity issues by age six than those who get just 30 minutes more of extra sleep.  See the chart below to learn how many hours of sleep your child needs.

Baby and Children Sleep Chart

  • 0-4 months. Total Sleep: 16-18 hours.  Nighttime Sleep: 8-9 hours.
  • 5-12 months. Total Sleep: 12-16 hours. Nighttime Sleep: 9-10 hours.
  • 1-2 years. Total Sleep: 11-14 hours. Nighttime Sleep: 11 hours.
  • 3-5 years. Total Sleep: 10-13 hours. Nighttime Sleep: 10-13 hours.
  • 6-12 years. Total Sleep: 9-12 hours.

#babyplus #child development #attentionspan #focus #childbevahior #parenting

The Importance of Praising Your Child

We all like to be told we are on the right path, that we are doing a good job.  We like to know that what we are doing is making a difference. This is true in all aspects of our life: at work, at home and at play. Of course these look different depending on where we are: a paycheck, a high five, a pat on the back, a hug, a kiss, a new outfit, words of affirmation, a sweet treat etc. These things are known as reinforcers which often times looks like rewards, and according to the research will increase the likelihood that a behavior will occur again.

This is great news for parents! This means we can bribe our kids with candy to get them to do want we want… right? Not quite. What it does mean is that we can capitalize on what motivates our children in order for them to complete tasks that they most likely don’t want to do, or are having hard time learning.


According to Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) reinforcement follows a stimulus change and results in the increased likelihood that the behaviour will happen again. Often times, when someone mentions reinforcement, it is typically positive reinforcement that they are referring to.

Types of reinforcement:

  • Positive reinforcement: when a behavior is followed by the PRESENTATION of a stimulus (a reinforcer). For example: A baby claps her hands and the parent smiles and cheers. The presentation of the smile and cheer are the reinforcers. This response will increase the chances that the baby will clap again.
    • A reinforcer can be anything: praise, toys, food, an activity/experience, music, stickers etc
  • Negative reinforcement: when a behaviour is followed by the REMOVAL (or end) of a stimulus which increases the chances that the response will occur more frequently. For example: Picture Johnny and Jamey fighting (behavior) over who gets to play with the ball and they are making a lot of noise (as kids tend to do). Mom comes in the room and takes away the ball (removal/end), both kids stop fighting immediately bringing back the peace and quiet (response). The chances of Mom removing toys when the kids are fighting is now strengthen and likely to occur again.

Advantages of positive reinforcement

  • The behavior that is being reinforced will occur more frequently
  • You become the giver or good things (helps to strengthen relationship with your child)
  • Helps children to understand what is expected of them and accepted
  • Helps to teach new skills

While a lot of this information can be pretty technical, don’t be discouraged. We are constantly providing feedback and reinforcement to those around us, especially our children. Once you find out what motivates your child (what their reinforcers are) you can have a dance party after homework is done, they can eat brownies when the chores are finished and you can enjoy your cuddles and giggles while tickling and snuggling your baby.

#babyplus #children #parenting

BabyPlus: The Best Mother’s Day Gift

Mother’s Day is almost here. If you are still hunting for the ideal present for the mom-to-be in your life that’s outside of the usual “bling bling” jewelry fashion statement box, we have  the best gift idea that will she will never forget and truly appreciate especially if this is her first pregnancy.  It’s called BabyPlus.


BabyPlus ® is an award-winning patented prenatal education system that’s designed to help strengthen a child’s learning capabilities in the womb. Mom may begin BabyPlus any time between 18 – 32 weeks of pregnancy with a goal of playing just one hour a day.


The BabyPlus curriculum includes 16 lessons.  Each one has a different variation of sounds patterned after mom’s heartbeat. These sounds work to enrich the baby’s cognitive development and give newborns a strong start with benefits that last a lifetime.

BabyPlus moms boast that babies more readily nurse, display an increased ability to self-soothe and are more relaxed and alert at birth.  Later in life, BabyPlus children reportedly reach strong developmental milestones, show improved school readiness and greater creativity and independence.

Mom will be pleasantly amazed at how quickly she sees the results when her baby is born and she’ll be grateful that you gave her such a thoughtful Mother’s Day surprise.


Mother’s Day Promotion

 $40 off the BabyPlus Prenatal System 

Offer ends May 13th 2018


Use promo code: MOTHER at checkout
Shop Now!


#babyplus #mothers day, #mothersdaygifts#bestMothersDayGift, #momstobe #pregnancygiftforwife