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Category Archives: Children

“Mama-is Santa Claus real?”

From Proactive Parenting

Dear Child,

Thank you for your letter. You asked a very good question: “Are you Santa?”

I know you’ve wanted the answer to this question for a long time, and I’ve had to give it careful thought to know just what to say.

The answer is no. I am not Santa. There is no one Santa.

I am the person who fills your stockings with presents, though. I also choose and wrap the presents under the tree, the same way my mom did for me, and the same way her mom did for her. (And yes, Daddy helps, too.)

I imagine you will someday do this for your children, and I know you will love seeing them run down the Christmas magic stairs on Christmas morning. You will love seeing them sit under the tree, their small faces lit with Christmas lights.

This won’t make you Santa, though.

Santa is bigger than any person, and his work has gone on longer than any of us have lived. What he does is simple, but it is powerful. He teaches children how to have belief in something they can’t see or touch.

It’s a big job, and it’s an important one. Throughout your life, you will need this capacity to believe: in yourself, in your friends, in your talents and in your family. You’ll also need to believe in things you can’t measure or even hold in your hand. Here, I am talking about love, that great power that will light your life from the inside out, even during its darkest, coldest moments.

Santa is a teacher, and I have been his student, and now you know the secret of how he gets down all those chimneys on Christmas Eve: he has help from all the people whose hearts he’s filled with joy.

With full hearts, people like Daddy and me take our turns helping Santa do a job that would otherwise be impossible.

So, no, I am not Santa. Santa is love and magic and hope and happiness. I’m on his team, and now you are, too.

I love you and I always will.
 
Mama

 
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Posted by on February 13, 2012 in Children, Familia, Holidays

 

Valentine’s Day for kids/Día del Amor y la Amistad

In my quest to make holidays meaningful for my family, I find myself researching age appropriate crafts for my kids to make as gifts and decorations.

I found this easy Valentine’s Day craft on Surviving Motherhood and made one with my 4-year old. She loved it and plays with it and it is a cute reminder of our love for each other.

While I love the idea of passing out Valentine’s cards as a way to take a moment to show each and every person your love and appreciation, I am not a fan of the cookie-cutter 30-per-box punch-out cards (now with candy!) that are commonplace today. Here a few creative alternatives:

Mad Libs Valentines

Recycled Crayon Valentines

Fabric Scraps Valentines

Printable ValenZZZAtines En Español

 

Billingual Children

When we <a href="#6"><strong>started having kids</strong></a>, my husband and I agreed that it was very important that they be bilingual. At the time, we thought it would be simple. My husband is a native Spanish speaker and I am fairly fluent as well. We thought it would be simple. We thought they would just absorb the language simply by being exposed to it within the home. And it did happen that way to a degree, especially when they were very young. As they grew, and especially when they started school, I started to notice a few things that made me realize that a more concerted effort was needed in able for them to achieve fluency. First, I started (unknowingly) speaking more English to them. As their vocabulary grew and topics of conversation became more detailed and profound, I found that I couldn’t express myself as well in Spanish as in English. Secondly, we have no Spanish speaking family and very few Spanish speaking friends nearby, so the only Spanish that they were hearing came from my husband and me. All of their peers spoke English and they started to prefer speaking English to us, even in response to a question asked in Spanish. I soon realized that in order for us to be able to give them this gift of bilingualism we would need to make a much greater effort for <a name="6"><strong>more exposure</strong></a> to Spanish, both in the home and socially. We enrolled them in a Spanish immersion charter school, we started attending mass and other cultural events in Spanish and I made (and continue to make) it a priority to have a wide variety of Spanish language material (books, music, movies, websites) available to them. The following are links to sites that I have found useful (and be sure to check out my absolute favorite site for kids learning Spanish!) BLOGS Mommy Maestra SpanglishBaby Spanish Playground Spanglish Aventuras Multilingual Mania Jugar y Colorear WEBSITES WITH GAMES FOR KIDS IN SPANISH Spanish Language Learning Games Foreign Language Learning for Kids Spanish for Kids ClicClicClic  <————-THIS ONE IS A PARTICULAR FAVORITE Mi Mundo en Palabras

 
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Posted by on January 21, 2012 in Bilingual, Children, Homeschooling, Spanish