Topic “columns”

Spreading the love

It’s not easy to be fair in a family with more than one child in it, but we need to be consistent
By: 
Paul Kerton
One of the most difficult things as a parent of more than one child is spreading the love (and money, and time, and opportunities, and food, and things) evenly between the brood. It is a seemingly impossible task to be fair to everyone, certainly at the younger end, but this gets easier as they get older and are able to reason.

We all need good educashun

School should be a fun place of learning and social interaction, but it can be hell for some children
By: 
Paul Kerton
School is such a massive part of everyone’s life that it’s important to try and get the mix right if your children are going to get the maximum out of it and actually learn something. If all goes according to plan, they should develop into upstanding adults and become productive members of society while pursuing personal goals that are achievable and fulfilling.

No worries

Modern children may be mollycoddled, but they’re also burdened by grown-up concerns
By: 
Paul Kerton
Let’s face it, modern children – those fortunate enough to be born into a loving family – are mollycoddled to the nth degree. They are chauffeur-driven everywhere, they have a rich menu of nutritious meals presented to them, their hyper-fashionable clothes are washed and ironed, they get help with their schooling, and treats and entertainment are laid on, often at great expense. No wonder parenting experts refer to “our” crop of children as the “cotton-wool generation”.

Winter-proof

Here are a few things we can do to insulate our children from the chill
By: 
Paul Kerton
Brrr, winter is upon us, which means cold, and if you live in Cape Town, also wet weather. Here are seven things you need to do, or not do, to winter-proof your children and insulate them from the rigours of the down season...
 
1.

With money in hand

Parents should think twice about the luxuries their children leave home with
By: 
Paul Kerton
If I gave your daughter, whether 10 or 17 years old, R10 000 in cash and said, “Please give this money to your mother for me,” before dropping her off at the bus stop, you would think I’d lost my mind. Nobody – not even grown-ups – carry that much cash on them. Yet every day, thousands of children are doing just that – walking around with a cellphone, tablet or laptop worth R10 000.

10 Lies children tell

Don’t be deceived, our children will often spin a yarn or try to pull the wool over our eyes
By: 
Paul Kerton
“I’ll take them for walks and pick up their poos. Promise.”
In a straw poll of at least 140 friends, this turned out to be the mother of all lies. Children will say absolutely anything to get a dog, cat, rabbit or anything cute. But when it’s time for the dirty work you won’t see them for dust.

We know best

We easily fall into the trap of thinking that we are the parental experts
By: 
Paul Kerton
Picture Nigel, the hapless early caveman struggling with the concept of fire. Now if some alpha male – Brett – hadn’t known best, intervened and said, “give me the damn sticks, I’ll get the fire going” then we would all probably still be wandering around today, covered in duvets trying our best to keep warm.

Branching out

One mom recalls how travelling at a young age impacted her life and ultimately that of her son’s
By: 
Cassandra Shaw
It’s amazing how much of an impact exposing your child to new and unusual things can have on them. Encouraging them to experience unfamiliar things or to visit different places can really ignite their curiosity and imagination. Taking them out of their everyday world creates the opportunity for you to open up their minds and to see what’s out there beyond their comfort zones.

Factoring in the sun

The sun can burn, cause skin damage and sometimes even embarrassment, but it also has its benefits
By: 
Paul Kerton
Growing up in England there was little chance of getting badly sunburnt or developing skin cancer, or even so much as a heat rash since the sun deigned to shine so infrequently, its influence was negligible. And boys never went out without their vests on. The other thing was that sunbeds, Mediterranean holidays, easyJet and multi-factor lotions and potions hadn’t been invented or exploited, or were limited to but a few.

Time to smile

Do you also find that you’re turning into your mother?
By: 
Cassandra Shaw
It’s amazing how the tables turn. It’s not anything new though. After all, our parents did warn us, on numerous occasions, that one day our time would come. “Just wait until you’re a parent” was constantly repeated in my household. Well, my day has finally come, I’m a parent, and I now see myself doing the exact same things that my mother once did with me.
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