Parent-Child Bonding Moments

On any given day…at any stage in life–whether consciously or sub-consciously, parents and their children get close and set up a special relationship through different bonding moments.

Mother-daughters do this through shopping, cooking, reading books, etc. Father-sons do it through sports, outdoor activities like hiking/camping, or cars.

Growing up, I’ve had (or still continue to have) very defined (albeit, UN-typical) bonding moments with my parents.

I’m not sure if my parents realize that I’ve “bonded” with them through these but…

With my Mom, it has always been through watching TV. Now we’re not die-hard TV show fans by any means. Somehow it just happens that my Mom and I both LOVE to watch Filipino teleseryes (soap operas) on The Filipino Channel (TFC). There are certain shows we just went “ga-ga” over through the years… Maging Sino Ka Man with Eli and Jackie (John-Lloyd Cruz and Bea Alonzo), Dahil May Isang Ikaw with Miguel and Ella (Jericho Rosales and Kristine Hermosa), and now, Walang Hanggan with Daniel and Katerina (Coco Martin and Julia Montes), and Dahil Sa Pag-Ibig with Alfred and Jasmin/Oliver and Agnes (Piolo Pascual and Christine Reyes/Jericho Rosales and Maricar Reyes). There are more shows I didn’t mention, but these are the more recent ones I can remember off the top of my head. We also like the ones Erich Gonzales have been in (Katorse, Maria La Del Barrio).

I have to point out that my Mom is more of a bigger FAN of teleseryes than I am. She is more the I-can’t-afford- to-miss-these-shows type, while I don’t go crazy if I miss an episode or two (as long as she tells me what I missed…hehehe).

I’ve bonded with my Dad through work. Always been that way. Every summer while I was in high school/college, I worked at the swimming pool company my Dad worked for. I made lots of money doing over time during those summers!! It was around those times that I learned how to work hard, make money (spend money too!!), and what it was like working in the real world. It’s just funny that after many years, I am now back working with my Dad, this time as a real estate agent like him.

I don’t remember many moments when I’ve bonded with my parents when I was younger. I do recall when I was around age 6/7 and Mom would take me to her office at S.G.V. (Sycip Gorres Velayo & Co.). I would pretend to “work” as well, while she went about her day. Looks like my bonding moments through WORK started with Mom and not with Dad after all…

This makes me think consciously about how we–Terrence and I–bond with Miguel…IF he’ll remember the conscious efforts we are making to bond with him now.

I know with Terrence, his special time with Miguel is spent playing outdoors…either going to the playground or playing in the backyard. Miguel just has a blast every time he’s with Daddy and is given free rein to be a boy and get dirty (hehehe).

As for me, my bonding moments with Miguel are more the quiet moments…book-reading, story-telling, teaching-learning, bedtime…that type of stuff.

I wonder how our bonding activities with Miguel will change over time. I hope he enjoys us and our company as long and as much as we enjoy his.

How do you bond with your child? Do you make a conscious effort to do so?

My bonding time with Miggz: some reading moments spent at Barnes & Noble. Sometimes he doesn't want me to read and prefers to TELL the story instead. He always starts with, "ONCE upon a TIIIIIME..." So cute.

Diego Overload!! Miggz saw Baby Jaguar from Diego on a shelf, so he picked it up. I gathered a few more Diego pieces for him to read/play with. His favorite was the book with the clock. He kept asking me, "What time is it, Mommey, what time is it?"

And of course...a stop at Barnes & Noble is not complete without Miggz playing at the Thomas & Friends train table display. The hard part is when it's time to leave. He cried and cried when we left the bookstore. I don't blame him...I LOVE B&N myself!!!

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A Stay-At-Home Mom’s Other Jobs

On any given day, stay-at-home Mommys do the obvious: care for the kids, do housework (cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc.), and care for the kids some more. There are other often overlooked tasks however, that are not that obvious, but do take a lot of time and energy as well. Our family’s busy activities the past couple of months have proven that, besides being a Mom, I am also:

The Family Accountant: I make sure that bills are paid on time, funds don’t go overdraft, and that there is enough money saved for future needs and expenses.

Event Planner: Christenings, Birthday Parties, Holidays, Family Reunions…you name it, I am planning it. This includes selecting venues, creating and sending invitations, planning menus, hiring entertainment, cleaning up, sending out thank you cards. It’s a LOT of work, but, I must say, this is the MOST fun for me.

Tax Preparer: The LEAST fun.

Filing our taxes...it's my LEAST favorite of them all.

Travel Agent: Involves searching for flights, hotels, destinations, excursions, travel planning and budgeting, itinerary creation, etc. This task is not bad, as long as I have enough lead time prior to a trip.

Luggage Packer…for lack of a better term: This is NOT my forte. I always wait until the last minute. I take FOREVER to pack. And I always OVER-PACK. I wish someone else can do this for me every time we go away.

Gift-Finder: When there is an occasion that calls for a present, it’s usually I who shops for–and packages–the gift. If it has to be shipped, yup, I am in charge of preparing that too.

Date Planner: Mostly out-of-the-blue stuff…but when I feel like getting away from Mommy and Housework, plus, All of the Above, duties, I search out concerts, comedy shows, Broadway plays, etc. that only my Hubby and I can attend. I LOVE this stuff, even though I know I have to drag my Hubby to most of them LOL!

Activity Researcher: I am always on the lookout for activities we can do as a family. Since I am also the Family Accountant, I prefer the activities to be cheap, if not free. I lucked out on a couple last year, like the Pumpkin Patch and the Arizona State Fair last Autumn. The newspaper is a good source for this.

So…what else do you do on a regular basis as a Stay-At-Home Mom? (I’ve corrected myself. I was already doing these even before I took on Mommyhood full-time–as I’m sure, a LOT of Mommys out there do too! :))

Confidence Boost

I started the day ready to conquer the world. I could do anything today. I shrugged off all negative feelings about work, my sometimes lack in New Mamma confidence, my desire to just stay at home with my son. Damn it, I thought to myself. I carried a living thing for nine months inside me, I nurtured it to life against all odds, and survived an emergency c-section. If I could surpass all of that…surely I can do anything else.

And so I went about my day. Wow, I said. What a difference a mantra like that does to your psyche. I felt the boost of confidence as I accomplished task after task at work. I got this. I got a lot done. Now if only I were able to continue that trend home. But home life with a baby is totally different. While there are things you can control in the office to make things go your way (most of the time), once a little one comes into the equation, you can forget about accomplishing chores like you used to. I had three things I needed to get done at home: pay bills, cut the baby’s nails, and the laundry. I said to myself that if I knocked off even one thing from that list, I’ve accomplished something big today. It was difficult, and pushing it to almost midnight again, but I am happy  that I got to pay the bills, and cut the baby’s nails. Two out of three. Not bad. The mountain of dirty clothes will have to wait again.

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