Tick… Tock... ⏰Schools Resume this September in Nigeria… I know that feeling of sorting out school fees as a parent… Don’t worry it will all be sorted out.
What fun thing did your kids do this summer holiday?Mine had a mix blend of subject coaching : a little bit of traveling and an art workshop to wrap it all up.
Sitting in our living room are these two beautiful art products… 👏👏 OK givingit up to the two artists… David and Ololade my two angels.
Now they are busy checking out their new school text books… The excitement I don’t get… Last night they almost slept with these books on their bed… Maybe it’s a “book hug” thing… Lol😀😀
Praying that the Lord’s blessings and protection will rest on all our children as they resume a new school year.
Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant-@debisibusybeemedia, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter – @DebisiBusybee, Facebook & email – email@example.com
A safe place connotes a conducive and enabling environment to be yourself and pursue your goals and dreams without fear or any inhibition. We all need that safe place to blossom and flourish.
What does a “safe place mean to a young person? This takes me down memory lane to my adolescent years. Look I’m not that old *wink… Lol😀.
As a teenager while growing up I and my sisters – we are four by the way, had more male friends than girls. The percentage was 90-10%… I am serious here…. So you can imagine the “fear & terror”, this must have brought to my parents… Hahaha. As African parents or any parent at all there is that extra carefulness you adopt when it comes to raising girls. Often you will hear parents especially mom’s like mine say something like this : “Eyin omo yi, e ma doju timi o!”. Meaning ‘Don’t bring shame to the family “, and by that they mean” do not get pregnant o“! “Becareful with boys”. Are you following my gist? So four teenage girls in the hands of my parents was a huge task in their minds.
Yearly we would organize our special Boxing day party for all the teenagers in our neighborhood and Youth group in church and we would have a hard time trying to get more girls to come to our party. I was the chairman organizing committee leader and sometimes I will hope and pray that my father will not adjust his glasses to access why we had more boys in attendance… “poor me”.
But you know what, admist all the adolescent age drama with friends and parents I felt safe and was able to express myself. I don’t know who taught my parent this wisdom I am about to share but it worked!
Instead of policing us and putting all our activities under a microscope my parents decided to have an open door policy. Our friends whether males or females were allowed to visit our home and they even get to gist with my parents. My Dad will engage us all in a friendly discussion and soon we would all be laughing. My friends back then thought my dad and mum were cool. While dad engages us in a gist, mum will be busy serving snacks or any food available in the pot. Unknown to us it was a strategy to learn more about who our friends were; possibly investigate what we have been up to. Mostly for us, we felt free to bring our friends home and be ourselves.
Now did we ever experienced that parent versus adolescent clashes? Of course plenty… Lol. However our parents open door policy was a check mate for us. Anytime Dad begins to raise some extra questions about a particular friend we were quick to understand that something wasn’t right because he hardly complained about our friends. So without having to breath down our necks, I and my siblings always found ways to cut off such friendship. I found out that I could speak to my mum intimately about my crushes and issues with the opposite sex.
Every time we have a chance to talk about our adolescent years at family reunions, it is usually with fond memories. 💑 Of course life is never perfect but we thoroughly enjoyed those years.
So back to my gist about creating Safe Places for Young People, I say it is doable. Mostly adults have the major responsibility of making young persons feel safe. We can do this by creating an enabling environment where young people can:
1. Be free to express themselves.
2. Have a listening ear who will be there for him or her.
3. Have a loving home environment.
4. Have a space and opportunities that allows them access to information about life: their wellbeing and reproductive health.
5. Give room for them to bring to the table their questions about issues that trouble people in their age group without fear of being judged.
The International Youth Day is celebrated every 12th of August yearly and this year’s theme is “Creating Safe Places for Young People”.
As a parent are you intentional about creating a safe place for your adolescents? Instead of adopting the “body guard” approach create an atmosphere that allows your children to express themselves. Build a relationship that gives room for conversations that will help guide them in making informed and right choices.
Adebisi Adetunji (C) Founder Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama, Communication4Development, Social Media Influencer, Principal Producer (FRCN) Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee Facebook & email – firstname.lastname@example.org
While growing up I remember feelingthat my parents hated me especially when I had been disciplined for behaving badly. As a grown woman now having my own children I can now “see clearly”! What a miracle (Chuckling)…😂
They say what goes around comes around…hmmm I guess the law of Karma caught up with me a few days ago 😀 My daughter insisted that her older brother cover himself with his blanket since he slept in her room that night. He insisted that he had a right not to use his blanket since the weather was hot anyway. And so an argument ensued and my dear daughter came to me to report this total disregard for her demand that he (her brother) use his blanket. You can imagine my initial confusion…In pidgin language …Chei this children will not kill me ooo…(Laughing)😂😂
I stood from the sofa where I was sitting watching the TV to go an investigate this serious allegation *wink“.😎 So off we went to her room and I found my son her brother lying down on a mattress on the floor across her own bed properly dressed in sleeping wears(not naked)…At least that was what I thought initially. I mean we’ve been teaching them to respect each other’s space and not be naked in front of each other…It is called biology or anatomy or sexuality lessons…choose one.😊😊
After seeing that he was properly dressed I told her that he had a right touse his bed cover/blanket or not and that she was infringing on his “human right” to sleep without a cover (Laughing)😂😂. My daughter insisted that since he was in her room he must use his blanket. Believe me, our children can sometimes say things that leave us baffled. Anyways as the judge in this matter and case I told her she wasn’t right in her demand.
Her young mind didn’t understandand so we argued and I am supposed to be settling this matter o…so I gave my final verdict and told her, she has been “unreasonable” in her demand!
The following day my daughter brought up the issue again and was offended😑 that I had said she has been “unreasonable”. Then I started a definition lesson of what “unreasonable” means… chei…. She still was feeling bad about parenting my usage of the word. I can’t remember what happened again but later that day she declared that she wasn’t sure I was her mum o….hehehe I laughed.😀
Well, I understood that she was not enjoying been disciplined or not having her way. So at that point, I went to have a one-on-one mother and daughter talk with her. I told her that I understood how she felt because nobody likes to be disciplined and that I once said that to my mother. Then I told her that I loved her so much which is why I will continue to discipline and correct her when necessary so she could grow up to become a responsible and disciplined young woman.
She was surprised that I didn’t shout at her or feel bad…I mean the plan was to blackmail me now :😀 But she got the message I was trying to pass and soon she was back to her happy self.
Parenting is never easy but we will find our way together as adults and children.We must keep pointing our children in the right direction so that they and everyone can be the better for it. Don’t be afraid to tell your child No you can’t do that! Don’t be afraid to discipline when necessary in love as well.
Adebisi Adetunji (C) Project Director Beehyve Empowerment and Development Initiative. Media content provider, Trainer & consultant, Behavioral Change Radio Drama. Communication4Development
Catch me on Twitter @DebisiBusybee
Facebook & email – email@example.com
It is a thing of joy for all family members when a new baby arrives.Grandmas and Grandpas do dance steps that had been hidden away for a long time. As soon as news of the birth of a child reaches older parents plans are made for the grand mummy to go and help nurse mother and the newborn. Sometimes a grandma goes to the home of her son and daughter-in-law vice versa before the arrival of the baby.
The baby becomes a center of attention and shared joyful moments between daughter-in-law and her mother-in-law. They forget their differences and celebrate the new member of the family for a while. But soon the different approach to raising and nursing a child begins to cause a clash. The grandma who has a generation of experience insists on throwing the baby up during bath time and the young mother screams and says, “mama that’s dangerous, please don’t throw my baby up!”😨. The grandma under her glasses😎 if she is wearing one looks at the young mother like, “hey young lady, that’s how I did it with your husband, my son and he is still alive for you to marry!”😒. Grandma also wants to give the baby some local herbs to help make him or her strong, the young mother and father go like, “mama, that can damage the intestine of our baby”! Now grandma is getting frustrated and feeling misunderstood.
The other problem between Grandmas and new mothers when babysitting their newborn is the issue of cooking. Some grandmas want breakfast as early as 7am, an in-between snack before lunch and dinner making a foursquare meal. Guess who has to prepare the meals? The new mother who is still recovering from the herculean task of delivering a 3.7kg baby and God help her if it was not a Caesarean section delivery. So the young mother spends a sleepless night breastfeeding her baby but has to also get up to prepare mama’s food and the type of meal is the one she will properly have to pound yam for mama! Don’t get me wrong, having a baby does not mean that a woman can no longer prepare meals but hey, a new mother needs all the rest she can get!! Some mums a few weeks after delivery end up breaking down and others even land in the hospital…this is not acceptable.
Grandma when you go to the home of your son or daughter to help nurse a baby be prepared to be patient, help a little extra beyond just helping to carry a well-dressed fine looking baby after his or her bath in the morning.
Apart from the stress of preparing meals and going to the market to get the ingredient house chores is another matter of concern when a grandma comes to help nurse a newborn. Now this time I am on the grandmas’ side. Some young couples think that since mama is around to help nurse her grandchild she must be ready to do more than her fair share of house chores. Some grandmas simply because they are willing and some don’t want to say no sometimes are made to do the dishes, washcloths, cook, hold the baby at night so the mother can sleep…hmmm very soon grandma will fall ill and all of you will be running in and out of the hospital. I once told one of my siblings who had just had a baby one time to get help when our mum goes to help with nursing their baby. I told her point blank, “mummy is old and cannot be the one doing all your house chores oooo”!“We cannot have her breaking down”, I added.
Our older parents are not slaves so please get an extra hand to help with your house chores when grandma comes to help nurse your baby.
Grandmas are not as agile as they once used to be, making them do all your house chores is an abuse. This not to say they cannot help around the house. They can cook and do whatever else catches their fancy but do not abuse your aged who has come to help you nurse your baby. So grandmas and new nursing mothers balance is the key here…and please be patient with each other.
We woke up this morning to a brand new day and year… Everyone could feel the breeze and joy of a new beginning!My daughter after our morning family prayers band everyone from going to her room and she was pretty serious about it😎
I had to prepare breakfast so going to her room was not in my plans at least not just yet.Sometime after breakfast she shows up with this balloon new year Greetings for me and her dad…!
We were so happy for her show of love. She simply wanted to appreciate us in a nice loving way… I am a happy and loved mum! 💝💝💝💞. It is moments like this that makes been a parent worth it! 2018 loading in a niceeee way😀😀😀😀.
Vasectomy, now this sounds like a big word that people often wonder what it means? It is simply a male permanent contraceptive. Usually, a minor surgical procedure is carried out which prevents sperms that can fertilize a female’s egg from getting across during sexual intercourse in simple terms. It is a contraceptive method used by couples who do not want to have any more children.
This is one family planning method that men are afraid of taking up especially in our African setting. This is because they are afraid that it might affect their libido and ability to enjoy sex with their spouses/partners. Even my fellow women clan refuse to support their men in taking this option 😀😀. Rest easy performing a vasectomy does no harm to a man’s libido or sexual performance. Many men worry about the risks involved in doing a vasectomy so learn more about it to make an informed choice.
Vasectomy is simply a shared responsibility in a couple’s family planning efforts know more about your contraceptive options as a couple.
Back to my question would you be willing to try the option of Vasectomy? Share your thoughts.
BusyBee Media for Social Change & Development
Have you ever experienced that frustrating feeling when you look at your wristwatch or office wall clock and it is almost closing time; then you suddenly remember you have no idea of what to cook for your family when you get home?Many times I listen to colleagues exclaim: “Oooooh what are we even going to eat this evening”. Then other female folks join in saying “That’s true, I don’t know what to cook for my family too”. And then we go on to console ourselves or should I say make ourselves feel even worse with words like: “Ah the life of a woman”.
I don’t know about you,cooking is a matter of necessity for me; I do my best to make good meals. But some women love to cook and you find them trying a variety of recipes. One of my sisters loves to experiment and so at family gatherings/event she often comes up with a new soup and would want us all to try it. I really do admire what she does but me…” long story”.
A dear friend and colleague,Stellamaris who by the way is packaging some Nigerian soup recipes for this blog love to cook…and men, she really can cook!! Ladies like her are ever in the market space shopping for ingredients. It is an almost every other daily activity, count me out. I mean I even plan the precise amount of time I want to spend in the market; I call it shopping sharply and smartly…hehehe. Please o, don’t blame me.
Shopping for ingredients and foodstuff to prepare meals is one thing and cooking is another part of the kitchen palava. Sometimes your food store is well stocked with a variety of food items you can prepare and yet you have headaches about what to cook. Yes, I do, I don’t know about you. The problem is not a want for food but about been skillful in preparing variety so that your menu is not monotonous
So how do we make things easier on ourselves when it comes to preparing meals?
• Good old fashion, food timetable works wonders. However, that would mean having all the variety in your timetable available in the house. Sometimes this is not workable. So you might need to also be flexible with your timetable.
• Learn a few new recipes from your family and friends who love to cook. This you can try out to give yourself and family a variety of meals.
• It is advisable to buy foodstuffs in bulk to save cost and to also refrigerate them appropriately.
• Have a day or days in the month when you prepare a variety of soups and stock in the freezer. This will help you prepare only what you need to accompany the soup such as rice or if you are very Nigerian, solid foods like Fufu, Eba, Amala, Akpu.
• Do not hesitate to ask for help from those who love to cook*wink. If they are willing to do it for free – good for you but if not be willing to pay for the services. They will help you to make various soups in large quantity and then you can preserve in your deep freezer!
• Sometimes offer to take your family out if you can afford it or get your man to take you all out. The trick to that…”Yawn and lament about how tired you really are if you are both riding in the same vehicle on your way home…hahaha….It is nice to have cooking free days.
• Plan, plan, plan your meals as best as you can.