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tribute-to-my-father

This is a guest post by my brother in tribute to our father for Father’s Day.With Father’s Day less than twenty four hours (24) away, it is difficult to erase the memory of my own dad’s significant impact on my life. Here are the attributes that made Daddy, Uncle Val(as he was affectionately called by all) my hero.F – FaithfulDaddy was extremely faithful to his family. There would be no special occasion that would go by without him making a special attempt to keep the family ties going. Birthdays, Anniversaries, Graduations: you name it, he was always there. Whenever separated by distance, he was always just  a telephone call away.A – ArticulateHis formal education was limited as far as modern standards dictate. However, he was well schooled in the street side university and also from the teachings and learnings of his favorite books 📚- all sixty-six (66) of them(if you know what I mean). He also took interest in the famous philosopher Kahlil Gibran whose work has spanned many decades and is still appropriate today. He was always one to ask us to help him find an appropriate quote from some wise person for use in his speaking engagements. Daddy was a man of few words but he always seemed to get his point across in an effective manner.T – TeacherAlthough our mother was the one with the formal training in education, Daddy was a teacher in his own right. Giving…

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Seasons of Change

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seasons-of-change

It’s graduation season… Such an exciting time! Not just for the graduates, but also their family and friends. The accomplishments, the possibilities for the future, the relief!!… So much is wrapped up during this time. There is something significant about the onset of summer as well. It’s the end of beautiful springtime. It’s the beginning of summer.  So much happens around this time; beginnings, endings,  celebrations… It’s a season of transition!Now your transition may not be a significant milestone like a graduation but it can be a time of reflection and a turning point towards who you are becoming. Frankly, this can happen at any time if you decide.Season of Change, Growth, Opportunity Change is scary for most people, and if we had our way we would remain in that comfort zone permanently. The familiar. On the other hand some people love it, because they know that it is during seasons of change that we grow.As you grow through these uncomfortable seasons, remember that all of us are equipped with our own special gifts or talents. It behooves us to explore and zero in on what those may be. Sometimes through trial and error, sometimes through failure; but the goal is to keep pushing towards the beauty that is within us.Who remembers the story of the 3 servants who were left in charge of their masters “talents”? The master went away and left in their care 5, 2 and 1 talents respectively…

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10-wonderful-lessons-from-mother

Mother’s Day is a special day for most people. I work in the payments industry and it’s the biggest spending day! Even bigger than Black Friday! Imagine that!. Suffice it to say, it’s an extra special day for some very special people; mothers.I did some research among my friends to gather info on what stands out in their minds as the greatest lesson they have learnt from their mothers. Responses were along the lines of advice on relationships, money, and life in general. I pulled all of that together as there are common threads in some. By the way, my sample was from both male and female. Some mothers are still here and making an impact, others have gone on to a better place and have left behind a lasting legacy. Below I share 10 wonderful lessons from mothers(in no particular order).SelflessnessSome of us can attest to mothers who would give their last ounce of effort just to ensure that their children’s basic needs were met. They would deprive themselves, not just physically, but also of their hopes and aspirations,  just so that we could have what we need to succeed. In some cases it was those extra funds to pay for the extra classes to prepare for exams, it could be that school trip, you name it.My friend recalls how her mother(who was a teacher) used to give guided tours to visitors to the island to make extra money…

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mommy-fail-moments

I’m not sure, maybe because Mother’s Day is coming, but I feel like I’m in full on mommy mode as far as my blog is concerned. I read a post from a fellow Jamaican blogger yesterday and it also added a little fuel to that fire. Made me start thinking of my “mommy fail moments”. I hope I’m not the only one who has had them.I don’t think I am alone in this, but everything I do, every decision I make, every moment of the day, I think about my son. How my choices will affect him, am I raising him the “right way”, and by right way I mean in a way that will be suitable and effective for him. And don’t confuse this with meaning that I want to do for him what he likes, because that’s not it. My primary goal above all is to equip him for life so he is able to function and make good choices no matter what life throws at him. Help him develop good coping skills.Fail #1My son’s preschool has an annual trike-a-thon. This was a day when you would bring in their tricycles to school so they could ride to collect funds on behalf of St Jude’s Children Hospital. The day came, I dropped him to school and totally forgot to take his trike. I spoke with his morning teacher and she said not to worry…

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conversations-with-my-son-why-did-you-get-a-red-star

Those of you that have kids in kindergarten might be familiar with the behavior reporting system that some teachers implement to keep them in line and to keep parents abreast of how they are doing behavior-wise on a daily basis. My son’s classroom has a clip system, where they start out in the middle on “ready to learn” and they can either go up or down depending on how they do on that day. The best possible is “outstanding” (pink star) and the worst possible is “parent contact”(red star).My son has had a pretty difficult week this week(not sure what’s happening), and he ended the week with a red star. Of course he came home knowing that we would not be happy about that and went straight to sleep.Now as a (good) parent, you want your child to do well and be the best version of themselves. In a country where your color determines how you are perceived, you don’t want to give fodder to that viewpoint(this is real people). You want to raise a strong black man, who is able to maneuver successfully despite the odds that are stacked against him.QuestionsHow do you bring that out in your child without breaking his spirit, without him losing himself and who he innately is? How do you reinforce positive behaviors while correcting the bad ones?Parenting StylesI have been doing some research on parenting styles and how they can…

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