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Blog Posts

Replacing a Playstation with an Electronic Drum Kit Improved Our Children's Behaviour

By - 01/12/2011 - 07:53

Not long after the release of Sony’s PlayStation 2 (PS2) in 2000, I won a copy of the newly-released PlayStation game 'This is Football', in an online competition. Around the same time I was also given a shopping voucher as a bonus from work, and I used it to buy a PS2 unit – our family’s first-ever games console, and our first-ever DVD player ... It got to the point that we would ban the PlayStation for periods ... Read full post

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Smug Alert - Are you a Smug Mum?

By - 02/12/2011 - 12:24

Smug, smug, smug – it’s one of those words that the more you say it, the stranger it sounds. What is it about human nature that means we feel better about ourselves when we hear about someone else getting it wrong? It’s why gossip magazines sell in the millions, pushing sales with pictures of celebrities getting into endless varieties of trouble. It’s why we read about mothers who drive and breastfeed at the same time and think, ‘I might not be the best parent on the block, but at least I wouldn’t do that.’ ... Read full post

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Christmas in Summer - a Perfect Time to Enjoy Doing Nothing with Your Family

By - 06/12/2011 - 13:10

In Australia, for many, December means celebrating Christmas, hot days, gifts, reconnection and relaxation, family, more hot days and approximately nine weeks of school holidays. We’re a month into summer and the heat can be oppressive. If you’re lucky and have access to a pool, beach or outback dam, the summer break invariably means much time spent cooling off in the water, perfecting the ultimate ‘bomb’ or dive, hunting for sea creatures in the sparkling depths of rockpools and seaweed forests, or catching yabbies in a muddy dam using nothing other than a bit of string and some pongy meat. Read full post

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Nothing is All Bad - and other Lessons from a Veteran School Mum

By - 13/12/2011 - 20:30

I am writing this post a day before my eldest son’s Higher School Certificate results are released. I’m still living in blissful ignorance but we’re expecting results in the disappointing to disastrous range. That’s okay. Yes really okay. My son and I sat down the other day and worked out a contingency plan in case we’re faced with the disaster scenario. He, however, is dreading telling others his results, and now wishes he’d worked harder. That’s a lesson he had to learn. What have I learned this year? Here are a few random thoughts. Read full post

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How to Recognise Two Stages to a Tantrum

By - 14/12/2011 - 13:03

New research by Professor James Green and colleagues at the University of Connecticut's Department of Psychology finds that, based on sound recordings of children's tantrums, there are two stages to a tantrum. Knowing how to react in these two stages may help parents deal effectively with a toddler's tantrum. Yvette Vignando shared the details on The Morning Show on Channel 7. Read full post

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An Immortal Hovering Television for Your Viewing Pleasure

By - 15/12/2011 - 13:02

Well, we’ve made it through 2011. Almost. Just a few days to go. We’ve made new friends, lost old ones, seen amazing things and been some wonderful places - and mostly due to good friends who share with us their time, their love, their generosity and give us the gift of experiences. The boys have come home this week, this last week of the 2011 school year, with their bags heavy with the fruit of their efforts this year. Workbooks in every possible area: maths, HSIE, literacy and so on .... and I’ve saved two of my favourites to share with you. Read full post

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The Magical World of Believing in Santa

By - 19/12/2011 - 13:49

I have just come off a phone call with a close friend who I have known since primary school – after all these years, she revealed to me today that she has a direct line to Santa. Well, her ten year old girl has apparently confirmed this, having noticed that Father Christmas never leaves her any presents under the tree that her parents don’t want her to have ... Read full post

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When Parents Disagree about How to Raise Children

By - 21/12/2011 - 15:23

It's inevitable that parents will sometimes disagree about how to raise their children - from small to large decisions, it's often necessary to compromise to come to a united decision. Avoiding disagreement in front of children is of course also very important - parents constantly clashing over parenting decisions can cause emotional harm to a child. Read full post

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Short Lesson in Positive Psychology for my Son Delivered via Telephone

By - 23/12/2011 - 11:09

Last night my oldest child had a crisis of confidence. In fact, the crisis began at pick-up and continued well into the evening. The source of his misery was an English paper that he just could not wrap his head around. A paper that was due the next day, the last day of the school term, the day we were flying home and the last thing any of us wanted to focus on was homework. Read full post

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Chrismukkah - Blending Family Celebrations during Christmas and Chanukah

By - 24/12/2011 - 11:57

Merry Chrismukkah: Jewish Christmas- kind of ... There’s a good reason Americans wish each other Happy Holidays - it’s very inclusive. In Australia, we generally wish people a Merry Christmas regardless of what it is they might or might not be celebrating. There are various cultural festivals on at this time of year, as well as hybrids. Take Chrismukkah, for example; this being the blending of Christmas and Chanukah for interfaith Christian/Jewish families. Read full post

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The Coffee Club and Peer Pressure on Teenagers

By - 24/12/2011 - 16:26

A friend recently forced herself to try coffee for the first time. A 33 year-old mother of three, she finally caved in to the social pressure to join the coffee-lovers club. Her first experience wasn’t all that enjoyable, so it will be interesting to see if she perseveres. As a non-coffee drinker, I can understand the pressure that she has faced to conform. I’ve had numerous suggestions from coffee devotees about the best way to overcome my aversion to the taste of coffee. Read full post

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