Monday, May 27, 2013

Teaching your Child to be Charitable

This year’s Mater Heart Run held this Saturday, is a success due to the many “little” people behind the scenes, including my son, who went door to door fundraising for the initiative for “little” fellows with heart problems. My son’s school had been chosen to take part in the event and boy, was he glad to be doing it.  You should have heard him ask all our friends and relatives how much they wished to give. In fact, he was not only suggesting that we give Kshs. 1000 or more each, but he even went ahead adding the amount besides our names. Talk about being generous. I was surprised because sometimes it is a problem to share toys with his friends. However, because their head teacher had given them a clear explanation about the cause, he was more than willing to do his very best. He had also developed profound compassion for the sick children.

                                                         Image courtesy of Artur84
Children unlike adults give without thinking about what they have to lose and this is perfect foundation for nurturing in them the spirit of giving, way into adulthood. If adults would give more, then today we would not have so many children sleeping hungry or not attending school because they do not have books or uniforms. Similarly, we would not have overpopulated orphanages because mothers would be willing to give all their love and support to their children in spite of their circumstances. The ball however, is in parents’ court to teach children on being charitable, so that they can grow up practicing the same. The goal is to instill compassion and turn them into a lifetime givers. Teaching your child to be charitable can be achieved in these simple ways.

1.            Talk about the Needy in the Society
There is no perfect timing to talk to your child about the needy people in the society. Therefore, invent the opportunity when you go to visit a sick relative, friend or when you pass by an orphanage. Similarly, passing by a homeless family would also be a perfect opportunity to introduce charity in your child’s life. This may sound a little absurd, but if you take your child on a tour to the Animal Orphanage in Nairobi, it is important to explain that just as those animals do not have parents, there are children without parents as well and rely on well-wishers for food and clothes.

2.            Let your Child Help the Elderly
If you never let your child go near old people because he or she might get sick, then chances are that your child will never learn to be charitable. Explain to your child the importance of helping the elderly with chores, picking their walking sticks, giving them directions and even offering them seats when using public transport. The same value has been imparted to older generations.  There is no reason not to do it in digital generation.

3.            Keep your Word
Never tell your child that some money or item is meant for charity, and then divert it elsewhere. Your child will not understand the need to be charitable. Furthermore, children never forget. They will remind you anytime you do not honor your word. You need be the best example on this one.

4.            Dive into Giving
Talking about being charitable to your kids is simply not enough. You have to get into it right away. Work on having a family program where your child donates books, clothes, toys and some savings as you do the same, on regular basis. You can choose a particular orphanage or institution or just be random with your giving. However, make sure that you and your child agree to it. It is also important to visit a children’s orphanage once in a while so that your child can have a true picture of the situation.

Well, teaching your child about charitable activities is easy as long as there is communication. The Bible says the Lord loves a cheerful giver. As such, blessings shower you and your child when you practice being charitable. Your child should understand this as well. 

My son and I will be giving books and clothes to RirutaShade Orphanage in Nairobi, at least annually, please work with us in this cause. Contact us here for details.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Mommy Making Extra Money on Squidoo

                     Think you can't write but you can market? Sign up here first.

Okay, okay, lets talk about money. Every now and then am always looking for a avenue to make that extra coin that will afford my son a good life. By a good life am talking about school fee is paid, his clothes are trendy- every mother wants that, right? I need to have some savings or medical insurance in case he falls ill,  money for new toys, books, outings, and not forgetting that I need also to replace all the items he has damaged in the house, the broken cups, plates, and flower vase, #sigh#, this boy is too much! The list is endless on what one can do with money when you have children.

Borrowing from friends is a good idea, but only if you want to have a tag on your back, the beggar! And this gets worse if you cannot pay back in good time. Now, all those I owe money please don't throw stones at me! Being a single parent who works on freelance has taught me to be open to any money making opportunities that come my way. Legal and moral of  course! 

When it comes to writing, I go for anything that pays and exposes me to other experienced writers. There is no better place to gain exposure to global writers than over the internet. While writing on Squidoo you can find all sorts of writers from  fiction, non-fiction, poets, and even academics. Writers who are published not only online but also have their books selling in major bookstores across the world.

While writing on Squidoo you are not limited on the kind of topics for your content but it has to be helpful in one way or the other to online readers. In fact, if you have products that you would like to advertise to a global audience, this is the perfect place for you. On this platform, you get to interact with thousands of international people.You can also expect to be awed by alien cultures as well, the Spanish, Chinese, Japanese, Irish, and Africans too, they are all here.

                Image courtesy of Graur Razvan Ionut source

If you have artwork, say quality photographs of wildlife, paintings, graphic design skills, or just writing skills among others you can easily market them on this platform. The sign up process is easy and free of charge.The site is also user friendly and has interesting features to make your writing online come out as you want it. You can also advertise your blogs, websites as well as products from other stores such as Amazon. In order to sell products from, you need to be under their associates program, something impossible if you are in Africa. It is also possible to make sales on Ebay and Cafepress and get paid through PayPal. 

So, you think you have the time and passion to write? You can self publish your writing online and sell products with it. Payments are made every 15th of the month. The first payout for newcomers, however, is done after a month and a half, but it is worth the wait.
Join me and let's make money online, to give our children the best things in life, because they come with a price tag. Squidoo is the place!

More online money making opportunities available here

Sunday, May 12, 2013

A New Dawn on Mothers Day 2013

Today being Mother's Day, am home alone :( Why? My son loves being outdoors.  It is okay though, because finally, I get to start working on my blog! As a six year old, my son has no clue about the fuss of this day. Earlier on our way from church, he asked me to buy him some ice cream but knowing it is a special day for mommy I told him he was supposed to buy me, and not the other way round. Of course, that did not go down well with him. 

                                        Image courtesy of Arztsamui source

That was the second time we were disagreeing on Mother’s Day. The first time we disagreed was this morning when I woke him up at 8.30 am so we could get ready for the 10.15 am Mass. He said he did not want to go to Church. My answer was, okay, even though I did not mean it. How could I let him continue sleeping on a Sunday? Would I have remained a responsible mother if I let him not attend Sunday school today? 

Anyway, I had to be stern to get him out of bed. As parents, we are always at cross roads on the right way to bring up our children. However, it is easy. Teach them values they will never depart from when they grow up. Christianity is one of the greatest values in my perspective, some people would think otherwise, I don’t know for what reason, but people are just different. Christianity, gives you an inner peace, which cannot be found anywhere else. Tested and tried…trust me!

My mother always insisted that going to church was compulsory especially on Sundays. My brothers and I would get a thorough beating if we dared defy our mother’s orders. My mother is the reason I am a Christian today, and a Catholic Christian for that matter. She ensured that we went through catechism classes, even though we did not understand at the time. She taught us how to pray the rosary, and we could tell that she loved God because of her devotion in prayer. 

I can remember, whenever we were praying together as a family, we would always insist that we say the prayers ourselves, because hers were long and we would end up dozzing off! Through her, I learnt that there is a living God who listens and answers prayers. A forgiving father who loves all regardless of how many sins they have committed. That same God I came to know and love through my mother, is the same One I want my son to know and love. 

If I bring him up in the light of the living God, am sure he will never depart from it. Already, I can start to see a few changes in him. He has taken interest in praying the rosary. He can sing a few songs, and he always reminds me to go to my Small Christian Community prayer group (fellowship).
                                                Image courtesy of Africa source

As for me, I learnt from the best mother’s in the whole wide world, my mother. I will forever be grateful to her for leading me to the light, the whole of my family actually, including my dad. I love you mommy and I hope that my son will say the same thing about me someday. That I made him the devoted Christian he will be, some day.

Do you want to instill confidence in yourself as a mother? The Confident Mom has some goodies to help you and more tips on motherhood, take all you can!

Want to know what your mother had to go through to bring you to this world? Watch this Funny Video.

Happy Mothers Day to all you caring ones!