The BossMom Magazine (B3's 10th Anniversary Commemorative Edition)

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TOTALLY Terri-Karelle The Ten th Anniversary Commemorative Issue BossMom Builds Moms in Business Helping Moms in Need A ll About Baby & Child ABCs Fun Tips on Raising Your Little Ones Keeping That Caribbean Connection Sex &The Single Mom No explanation necessary! Terri-Karelle Reid Shares on Parenting with Pure Passion Spring Issue 2 022 • Vol.2 Issue 5 J$700 • EC$16 • TT$40 • US$6 • £4

because dont just happen. Fairy tales

Dragonfly

do.
upon a time is our every time. Immerse yourself in our world where we turn your fantasy into your reality. The magic of imagination and wonder is our gift to you and the beauty of your love is what makes your dreams come true.
Experiences
Once
events, we orchestrate unforgettable experiences. dragonflyexp.com hello@dragonflyexp.com USA (954) 667-7473 • JA (876) 885-0361
Rather than simply plan

Turning moments into memories for 40 years

ESTABLISHED 1981 SANDALS.COM • 1.800. SANDALS Or Call Your Travel Advisor *Visit www.sandals.com/disclaimers/bossmomsum22 or call 1-800-SANDALS for important terms and conditions. Sandals® What creates the perfect moment? It’s pristine white-sand beaches crafted cocktail. But, most of all, the perfect moment is found in the ® Vacation. Sandals ® YOUR LUXURY INCLUDED ® VACATION IS FULLY PROTECTED * • And Much More Should your trip be interrupted, we’ve got you covered with:

YES, I’M KEEPING IT!

NOW WHAT?

EVER!

YOUR BABY’S GROWTH ISLAND STYLE SIZING

MAKE WOMB FOR BABY A PREGNANCY SURVIVAL GUIDE

GOOD MOVE MOVING WITH A YOUNG FAMILY 92 THE MAKINGS OF A GREAT CHILDHOOD

10 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 14 EDITOR’S NOTE
PREGNANT!
22
YOUR BEST PREGNANCY
28
DAY 32 B3 MOCKTAILS 36
38
46 ALL ABOUT BABY & CHILD 56 NAMING YOUR BABY 62 ON SURVIVING MISCARRIAGE 64 YOUR BABY’S DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES 66 EDITOR’S
FOR MUMMY 68 ON SURVIVING THE FIRST YEAR 76 TUMMY TIME WITH TAMI 88 MOMMY BRAIN SYNDROME 90
112 TOTALLY Terri Karelle
18
MAMA GLOW
PACKING FOR YOUR BIG
PICKS
46 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 102 7 MYTHS ABOUT NATURAL BLACK HAIR 104 BOSSMOM BUILDS 108 WHEN MOMMY NEEDS A SICK DAY 112 TOTALLY TERRI KARELLE 122 KIDSPIRATION 126 A BALANCING ACT SPORTING KIDS 132 BLACK TO BASICS 134 TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL 138 SUN KISSED BEACH DAYS 148 17 THINGS BOYS NEED FROM THEIR MOMS 152 GIRLS ROCK 154 KEEPING THAT CARIBBEAN CONNECTION 76

156 B3 ISLAN’DAD

166 DADS ON DUTY

180 EDITOR’S PICKS FOR DADDY

182 SEAMLESS SUMMER TRAVEL WITH CHILDREN

188 MNI MODELS

198 ISLAND CHILD STYLE

208 KID COUTURE

224 SEX AND THE SINGLE MUM

228 40, FABULOUS & FERTILE

230 PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES

256 B3 ESCAPES

TURKS & CAICOS

258 AILAN’S MOMMY 274 PIZZA

276 B3 MD WITH DR. THEA NICOLE DAVIS

| B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE| 13 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 104
ADAM STEWART
BEACHES
A
BUSY MOM’S BEST FRIEND
188 230
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Editor's Note

Iremember sitting in my then children’s boutique and calling my good friend and master photographer Dwayne Watkins one evening in February 2012.

I shared with him a wild idea that I wanted to start a magazine about Caribbean parenting. He listened to my lofty dream knowing full well that I had neither the money nor the manpower to make it happen in the way that I dreamed about. He picked up the phone and he too called a friend - another Dwayne, (Jureidini) whose design mastery would impress our readers for years to come. Our core team was born, and parenting conversations shifted from an antiquated textbook view of only generational lessons, to a sexy redefinition of today’s parent as modern, global and relevant.

What began as a chic and classic children’s clothing store blossomed into a parenting platform with several related arms. Ten years of parenting on this stage saw us traveling the region, both physically and virtually to share the beauty of parenting as a lifestyle, while capturing the attention of thousands of readers and followers the world over.

Today, 10 years later, it is a joy to see what we have become. Like a multifaceted child with a variety of strengths and talents, B3 - Bump, Baby and Beyond became a springboard for awareness for parents and confidence-building platforms for children with events and activities such as A Big Baby Shower, B3 Parenting Expo, Expectations & Answers, Parenting Seminars, Our Sons, Island Child Style, BOLDgirl, and most recently, The BossMom Network and The BossMom Magazine. In all things, we remain in a celebration of the matriarchs of our nations who continue to build our

families, while building their businesses.

This issue of The BossMom Magazine is a ‘fusion celebration’ of years gone by with B3 Parenting and the continuation of shining the spotlight on our moms.

As we celebrate our 10th anniversary of redefining Caribbean parenting, we say cheers to better communication and relationships between parents and children, and better familial connections everywhere we go. I’ve never wavered from saying that when we fix our families, we will fix our nation. Our cover girl for this issue BossMom Terri-Karelle Reid, underscores this message at the heart of her story starting on page 112.

This past Mother’s Day saw the BossMom Community come together to impact the lives of 3 mothers-in-need. In partnership with The Food for the Poor charity organization, corporate sponsorship and private donations, 15 like-minded BossMoms brought heart and strength together to build homes in three parishes across Jamaica. See more about our lifechanging initiative on page 104. It was an honour and a privilege to play a small part in fixing our nation.

Take a walk with us down B3 Memory Lane, and thank you, for 10 eventful years of redefining parenting lifestyle with beauty, style and grace.

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ENSURING THE VERYBest. Web: www.dwaynewatkins.com • Email: info@dwaynewatkins.com Follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @TeamDWP

The BossMom Network PUBLISHER

Michelle Gordon EDITOR-IN-CHIEF & CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Dwayne Jureidini ART DIRECTOR & LAYOUT ARTIST

Dwayne Watkins COVER PHOTOGRAPHY

Contributing Writers

Michelle Gordon

Claire Stewart

Ruth Jackson

Robyn Miller

Kristina Neil

Ginger Jones

Gayle Cunningham

Sara Mastin

Gillian Whyte-Roseway

Joni Wedderburn

Elena Diedrick-Lynch

Joseph Cornwall

Eva Greene-Wilson

Abigail Edwards

Anika Repole Wilson

Special Thanks

Dwayne Watkins

Dwayne Jureidini

Angelie Spencer

Arlene Martin

Norma Williams

Claire Stewart

Chelsea Taylor

Ayesha Barnett

Cover

Styling: BrandED by Norma

Photography: Dwayne Watkins for TeamDWP

Styling: BrandED by Norma Williams

Hair Stylist: Zelpha “Aunty D” Peynado

Makeup: O'neil Baugh

www.bossmomnetwork.com

Digital Newsstands www.issuu.com Copyright © 2 021 All rights reserved. is material may not be reproduced, displayed, modi ed or distributed without the express prior written permission of e Boss Mom Network. For permission, please contact bossmom@bossmomnetwork.com Email: info@dwaynewatkins.com Follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @TeamDWP

“Yes, I’m Keeping It”

So the plus sign means I'm pregnant huh? Now What?

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These four words are about to change your life. After all, this wasn’t planned. It was supposed to be just another one of those nights…or days. Dinner, drinks, sex, sleep, wake up, go to work and do it all over again. Now, less than two months into your relationship- if you even have a relationshipshe’s telling you that she’s pregnant and more importantly, it’s yours. This is crazy! You’re going to be a father because she’s keeping the baby and there’s absolutely nothing you can do about it. What do you do especially in those first few days of finding out?

Each year in Jamaica, over 57% of pregnancies are unplanned, this according to the International Family Planning Perspectives (2007). The demographic for these statistics cross the infamous downtown versus uptown divide. Either way, for an island as small as Jamaica, such statistics are worrisome. So you might sit and think to yourself “Those poor ladies!” While I’m all for jumping on board the empathy train, I usually wonder “What about all those men?” The men. The real ones who choose to stick it out alongside their women. How do they feel? People usually forget that unplanned pregnancies a ffect both the partners in the relationship. So men, don’t worry . I’ve got your back. I’m going to share with you some tips I think we women want to share with you about what we need from you during this ultra important “OMG” moment.

1. First o , do not ask me if I’m sure. You’re only going to further aggravate my already spinning emotions and I am likely to hit you. So please; I’ve peed on exactly three pregnancy test sticks and they’ve all read the exact same thing. I’ve also been to my

DO NOT EVEN THINK OF ASKING ME IF IT’S YOURS. ”

gynaecologist who re-confirmed those three tests. Yes. We’re pregnant.

2.

Kindly refrain from assuming that this was some great conspiracy on my part to trap you. In 2012 there are a host of ways to trap a man and that do not involve my body morphing over the span of 9 months; and are not limited to including that special “stewed peas suptin’” or a visit to Muma Sandra in St. Ann. Trapping? I think not.

3.

4.

Next. Do not even think of asking me if it’s yours. As I said before, WE’RE pregnant.

Don’t assume that abortion is an option and don’t assume that it isn’t. At this point, I’m as confused and surprised as you

5.

6.

are. I don’t know what I’m going to do as yet.

Don’t panic. Right about now ALL of my panic buttons are switched on so I don’t need yours blaring as well.

Do not feel pressured to marry me. I’m not a believer in pregnancy = marriage. This is not 1963.

7.

Do keep me calm. I came to you because I need some cl arity and sense of direction. I need you to be some sense of reason to me here.

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PEOPLE USUALLY FORGET THAT UNPLANNED PREGNANCIES AFFECT BOTH THE PARTNERS IN THE RELATIONSHIP ”

8.

9.

10.

Do keep me from sinking into depression. Even if we’re not thrilled by this sudden addition to our lives, keep me optimistic that we’ll be alright.

Do allow me to cry on your shoulder if I want to.

Do give SENSIBLE suggestions as to how we’re going to deal with this because one way or the other it has to be dealt with…soon. Present me with hypothetical situations. Suggest positive ways and means to handle the situations. Don’t just automatically run the abortion line. This would reassure me that you’re going to be there for me and support me throughout this; whatever my decision is. At least pretend to be excited about it even if I’m not. I value your opinion but don’t force me to accept your suggestions.

Unplanned pregnancies are scary and can entirely destroy couples. This does not have to be so though. Support for each other is crucial even more so for men. However, once they are successful in that department, especially after she tells you that she’s keeping it, all chips usually fall into place.

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Abigail Edwards is born & bred in the land of Oil n Music; Trinidad & Tobago, 2% Jamaican, Carimac alumni, avid reader, lover of political discussions, aspiring humanitarian, big dreamer.

A gentle skin and hair care line for babies, made with naturally derived Olive Oil.

Mama Glow

Your Best Pregnancy EVER ! with Latham Thomas

Hello, I'm Latham Thomas, founder of Mama GlowI use a holistic approach to pregnancy which I have used to educate, empower, and inspire clients to look and feel their most radiant. I have touched the lives of hundreds of women who want to experience a healthy, balanced, and fabulous pregnancy. Mama Glow is a comprehensive wellness plan containing dietary and lifestyle advice that helps optimize your glow power. Using plant-based nutrition (or “Glow Foods”), education, yoga, and other tools, Mama Glow offers a unique system to help you develop an authentic relationship with your changing body, boost energy levels and lift moods, combat common ailments like morning sickness, prepare for an easier delivery, and achieve radiant skin, nails, hair, and a vibrant overall aura. On your marks, Get Set, let's GLOW!

LATHAM'S TOP 10 TIPS FOR THE HEALTHY MAMA GLOW! 1. Take 400 micrograms of Folic Acid before pregnancy and during the first 3 months to promote healthy development of the brain and spine of the fetus.

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1

2. Practice Flexibility Exercises. Joining a prenatal yoga class is a great way to stretch and tone the muscles that will be used in labour. Gentle stretches provide you with more flexibility in the muscles and joints, which will promote an easier labour.

3.

Eat Your Greens for calcium and phytonutrients. Greens help stabilize the blood sugar levels and give you the bulk fiber needed to promote glowing skin and intestinal health. Try callaloo, pak choi, mesclun, kale, collards, chard, & arugula. Buy organic whenever possible.

4.

3

Massage your growing belly daily from the beginning of your pregnancy with a quality massage oil like Mama Mio’s Omega Oil or Tummy Rub butter, or Sanctuary Spa's stretch mark oil to prevent or reduce the appearance of stretch marks.

5.

8

8.

Just Say No. Set healthy boundaries around your personal space and only do what feels good. When you strain or force yourself to do something you don't want to do- you end up feeling depleted. Start delegating tasks. You must preserve your energy and allow your body the adequate rest it needs to support you and your growing baby.

Pack a Mobile Pantry. Eating small meals throughout the day will keep you energized and feeling good. Pack snacks to take with you on the go, some healthy options: fresh seasonal fruit, nuts, seeds, yogurt, veggies & hummus, granola bar.

6.

5

Engage in physical activity during pregnancy to improve sleep patterns, decreases water retention and the associated varicose veins and leg cramps. Exercise helps keep prenatal weight gain within a healthy range, and decreases likelihood of developing gestational diabetes. Try swimming, brisk walking, yoga, Pilates, or dance.

7.

Stay Hydrated. Dehydration can induce abdominal contractions, inducing preterm labour. During pregnancy the body requires more water to conduct metabolic functions. Grab your water bottle and drink away, be sure to drink eight tall glasses of water daily.

9.

Get Support. Build a team of practitioners, your midwife or OB/GYN, acupuncturist, massage therapist, labor support coach or doula: to be a part of your birth team. All of these people have a function during pregnancy and some at your labour. You want to feel comfortable with who is around you so do your research. Also make sure you designate a good friend or two for your sister circle- who can help with cooking, laundry, errands in those first weeks postpartum.

9

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4 6 7

It's GLOW Time! Make a regular practice of shutting off your phone, computer, and other distractions and carving out some time to bask in your glow. Relax and take care of yourself, try a nice soak in the bath with herbs and essential oils, light some candles, cuddle up with a good book, go see a film, take a hike, bake a dessert, whatever feels good. Just be present and enjoy the moment- doing what you love.

Your Blissful Birth Birth is a dance. Along the way a cocktail of hormones will cascade into your bloodstream and produce an effect that is masterfully designed to make you and your baby fall in love. Our culture views birth as a violent, painful, and disempowering experience. For generations women have taken a back seat when it comes to childbirth, allowing modern obstetrics to push a technocratic birth model that has little respect for the power of the female body, and now it’s time to reclaim our bodies as sacred sites and to trust our inner divas who know exactly how to give birth. I know birth to be a potent experience that reshaped my life, that gave me a power center that I still stand from today.

STAND AND DELIVER

A baby learns whether the earth is a safe place within the first day of life. How you are born is very important. Much attention should be placed on how a baby comes into the world and how a mother is born into the role of caretaker. She should be respected and treated as a client, not a patient—there is a di fference. How do we establish a normal birth process? It starts with knowing your birth options and knowing what is the normal course of labour and believing in it—standing up for what you want and deserve, and delivering on your terms.

FREE TO BE! MOVEMENT DURING LABOUR

A woman has to be given the right to move instinctively. In a home birth and birth center this is encouraged, but not as much in hospitals. If a woman is in bed during her labour, she loses the advantage of having gravity on her side. And two common birthing strategies, continuous electronic fetal monitoring (EFM) and epidural anesthesia, keep you lying on your back. To get moving while in labour, try the following:

• Request intermittent monitoring versus continuous—it’s fine as long as you’re not high risk.

• Try all noninvasive pain management strategies first: a massage, counter-pressure, shower or bath, vibrator, changes in position, pressure points.

• Use a birthing ball to move and swivel your hips and try walking to increase the contractions if they slow down.

OPTIMAL POSITIONS FOR BIRTH

Pain is purposeful. It guides you instinctively into the movements and positions that make you more comfortable and help the baby navigate your pelvis. When an epidural is introduced, that feedback mechanism is lost and you are no longer aware of what is happening below your waist. When you are upright in a squat, your pelvis is 30 percent more open. Hello! That is major, considering what you are about to push through, honey. To avoid the supine, lying-on-yourback position, try the following:

"It wasn't until I was pregnant that I became overly conscious of how much I only wanted to have positive things around me; people, food and energy! I also saw how easy it is to think of birth as a series of decisions that someone else is making for us. But we women are powerful and almighty and Mama Glow helps show us just how empowered we can be all the way throughout this glorious time in our lives!"
--Alicia Keys

• During pregnancy, spend time in positions that help the baby position itself correctly. These include Child’s Pose, hands and knees (Cat and Cow), sitting forward in a chair with your spine nice and tall, sitting cross-legged, or squatting.

• Avoid an epidural or other interventions that would render you immobile, and enlist a skilled birth coach/ doula for your support team to help you try to find more comfortable positions.

• Ask for a squat bar, which fits right onto your bed and helps women to assume a more upright position during the pushing stage.

• Try the side-lying squat position. This is a favorable way to rest and try the first few pushes when it’s time to deliver.

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BUMP
Grammy award winning recording Artiste

No matter what your birth outcome, feeling empowered, supported, and informed is essential. My experience of pregnancy and birth was blissful and one that inspired me to write my book, Mama Glow: A Hip Guide to Your Fabulous Abundant Pregnancy , foreword by Dr. Christiane Northrup, which is an essential guide for an empowered pregnancy. For more glow tips check out my book and website www.MamaGlow.com

LATHAM THOMAS: MAMA GLOW

Latham Thomas is a maternity lifestyle maven, wellness & birth coach, and yoga teacher on the vanguard of transforming the maternal & women's wellness movement. A graduate of Columbia University & The Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Latham is the founder of Mama Glow a holistic lifestyle hub for women to explore their creative edge through wellbeing. She is co-founder of the Mama Glow Film Festival- a platform for maternal advocacy through film and philanthropy, and recently launched the Mama Glow Salon Series- a platform for birthing conversations around cocktails, panels, and discussions. . She lives in New York City with her son Fulano and their turtle Climby. Latham will publish her first book- "Mama Glow: A Hip Guide to Your Fabulous Abundant Pregnancy", foreword by Christiane Northrup, M.D. in November of 2012 with Hay House. Latham is helping to green the planet one belly at a time.

www.mamaglow.com

Twitter: GlowMaven

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Packing for your big day

Itend to do things a little di fferently. Putting the carriage before the horse some may say, but I just like to think that I’m a forwardthinker. Shortly after discovering that I was pregnant with my first child, after excitedly informing those who needed to know, I started to plan. I mean, some things would naturally take care of themselves. Like the baby growing. So, I decided to tackle those things that required my immediate and urgent attention, like my hospital bag! A bit early you say? Perhaps, but I was determined to go through a stressfree pregnancy, so I figured, why not start at the end and work my way backwards. (Understandable…coming from the lady whose son’s nursery was complete and waiting when he was only 5 months in utero.)

Okay, I took it to the extreme, but on a serious note now, the last thing you’ll want

to have happen is that you end up being rushed off to deliver your baby, and find that your must-haves are still sitting in the drawers at home. No matter who you instruct to put your stu ff together, it won’t be done in the ‘perfect’ way that you would, had you done it yourself.

I’m talking about all the essentials you'll need during labour, birth and for after your baby is born, It’s definitely a good idea to be prepared and have your bag packed by the time you are about 32 weeks pregnant.

Remember that hospitals have di fferent policies on the items that you’re allowed to take. Be sure to check with yours ahead of time to see which items are allowed and if you have any special requests, don’t wait until you arrive for delivery to ask. I wish I’d taken my own blanket, because no matter how many of those waif-thin sheets I got, I was still cold. I of course, went to town, once I was given the go ahead to add my personal touch. Can you say ‘Martha Stewart 101?’

I’m a lover of order, so for me, packing 2 bags, one for me, and the other for my baby,

was a natural choice. Matching of course. I really wanted to keep my bag in the car, just in case. But when my ever-so-loving (and terribly sarcastic) husband suggested that we just take it to the hospital and leave it in the closet of our room, I suspected that he was trying to suggest that I was being over the top. Perhaps, but he finally acquiesced, and our matching suitcases waited patiently in the trunk of his car, for a mere 3 weeks. Had I not insisted, our son’s arrival 5 weeks earlier than expected, would have caught us unprepared. See, I am visionary after all!

HERE’S MY LIST OF ALL YOU'LL NEED TO TAKE FOR YOUR BIG DAY.

Mummy’s Bag

A Going Home Outfit You’ll need something loose and comfortable

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Treat them well so they can keep you moving. Our pedorthist works with your doctor to alleviate lower extremity complaints, including foot, knee, hip and back pain. We achieve this through footwear modi cation, orthotics or bracing. Footlogic Jamaica Ltd. Certified Pedorthist 17 Munroe Road, Liguanea, Kingston 6 (876) 632-9729-30 • (876) 402-5983 footlogic@gmail.com • www.footlogicja.com

Robe

For a quick cover up if required Slippers

Socks

Maternity Pads

Breast Pads

4 Night Shirts

Toiletries

Snacks and drinks

Rubber ones for showering and another pair for regular walking around

Your feet can get cold during labour

Bring at least 2 packs

1 Pack

Front opening for easy access for breast feeding

Lip balm, Towels, hairbrush, lotion, moisturizer, toothpaste, toothbrush

Water tasted terrible to me, so I opted for some good old 'Ting'

Something to Read or Listen to Your iPad, Kindle, Books, magazines, games and so on Pillows

Inexpensive underwear

Or your blanket. Some hospitals simply don’t have enough

Some you don't mind disposing of Ear plugs

For your mental privacy

For Your Spouse

A change of clothes

Camera, phone, camcorder

Address book

You never know…

In the event he remembers to capture the moment. Don’t forget to pack the chargers

Or a list of the family and friends who you’ll want to keep in the loop

Have a back-up person to do the calling, as Daddy may be pre-occupied with you

For Your Baby

Have your infant car seat installed in your car BEFORE leaving the hospital

3-4 side-snap shirts

3-4 sleepers

6 Receiving Blankets

6 Burp Cloths

1 Pack of newborn diapers

3-4 pairs of socks or booties.

3 Hats

3 Hooded Towels

3 Washcloths

Diaper cream

One outfit for the trip home

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Coconut Mocktails

We are combining coconut and cardamom. Few will dispute the benefits of coconut water. It’s low in calories, and rich in potassium, dietary fibre, and vitamin C. On the contrary, few know the benefits of Cardamom, a spice commonly used in Ayurvedic medicine, and chock-full of benefits. Put the two together, and you get a powerful combination of health-infused refreshment! Here’s a super easy recipe for our Moms (and Dads-to-be).

ABCD OF CARDAMOM

A - Aphrodisiac – Cardamom is a powerful aphrodisiac that can help with erectile dysfunction and impotence.

B - Blood Pressure – As a diuretic and fiber rich spice, cardamom significantly lowers blood pressure.

C - Cold and Flu – This pungent spice may help prevent and relieve cold and flu symptoms. It’s also used for bronchitis and coughs.

D - Digestion Cardamom is related to ginger and is great for nausea, acidity, gas and heartburn.

INGREDIENTS

1 Soft-fleshed (green) coconut

2 - 3 Tablespoons of honey

½ Tsp Cardamom powder

METHOD

1. Drain the water from the coconut in a large glass

2. Chop the coconut in two and scoop out the white flesh

3. Combine the coconut flesh, the coconut water, cardamom powder, and the honey in the blender.

4. Blend until smooth then garnish with lime.

5. Serve either chilled or on ice and ENJOY!

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A gentle skin and hair care line for babies, made with naturally derived Olive Oil.

Your GrowthBaby’s Island Style Sizing

Growth is synonymous with pregnancy – growth in size, and growth in appetite. They say the more you grow, the more you know, right? Well check this outTake a look at your baby’s growth from conception to birth, and whet your appetite for some tasty Caribbean foods - you may just learn a thing or two about fruits from neighbouring islands. We’ve got a lot in common. Who knew!

First Trimester

37-40 WEEKS

WATERMELON

– Your baby is now full term, and you’re ready to give birth any day now. Eat well, and safe delivery!

21-24 WEEKS

PAW PAW (Jamaica)

aka Papaya in Belize

– You’ve passed half-way through your pregnancy, and your baby is beginning to look more like a baby at this point.

0-4 WEEKS

GUINEP (Jamaica)

aka Chennette in Trinidad and Tobago, Ackee in Barbados, Skinup in Grenada, Limoncill in Dominican Republic

– Your baby is still very tiny, and you’re not yet showing at all. You have not yet started to gain weight, but your baby is growing and developing, so be sure to tank up on nutritious foods only.

5-8 WEEKS

CASHEW (Guyana)

aka Pajuil in Puerto Rico, Cajuil in Dominican Republic

- Although your uterus is growing, you’re still not showing – especially if this is your first pregnancy.

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33-36 WEEKS:

JACKFRUIT

– Your baby is in the six-pound region now, and you’re big. You’re probably ready to pop now, as baby is quickly running out of space.

9-12 WEEKS

29-32 WEEKS

BREADFRUIT

(Cayman Islands)

aka Bois Pain in St. Lucia, Lame Veritable in Haiti – You’re experiencing rapid growth now, as your baby continues to double his weight, and fill out his surroundings very well.

Third Trimester

25-28 WEEKS

SOURSOP

(Antigua & Barbuda)

aka Guanabana in Cuba, Corossol in Haiti

– Your baby has doubled his weight, and is now more than 2 pounds.

17-20 WEEKS

MANGO

(All Islands)

- Your baby is not yet a full pound, but you on the other hand, may have already gained a few of those.

GOLDEN APPLE (Guyana)

aka June Plum in Jamaica, Pomme Cythere in Dominica

– Although your baby has grown a lot in these past weeks, your little one is still not ready to show the world that he or she is on the inside. So as they say in Jamaica, ‘yu belly still flat like a willy penny!’

Second Trimester

13-16 WEEKS

SAPODILLA (Guyana)

aka Nesberry in Jamaica, Dilly in The Bahamas

– If you do an ultrasound now, you may well be able to see if you’re carrying a boy or girl. You will steal many a moment in front of your mirror exaggerating your growing tummy, which is now big enough to start feeling slightly uncomfortable in your regular clothes.

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A Pregnancy Survival Guide

MAKE WOMB FOR BABY

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Nausea

Morning sickness can be ALL DAY, ALL NIGHT, 24 7 sickness. I heard it best from someone recently, explaining how she felt during her first trimester; “If there was an eject button I would so have pushed it”. Unless you have been in this situation you may not be able to appreciate, but as much as this explains her discomfort, it also shows something very significant.

General discomfort, whether in the form of nausea or back pain, appears to be mental training; to put your wants, desires and comfort aside for that of your baby on the way. Soon you will realise that your child will come first in all your decisions, rather than what you wanted for yourself. (Note though, that I did not say ‘need’ – as women our needs must also be met in order to nourish and nurture ourselves so that we can also grow and further develop as individuals not just as mothers, significant others or worker bees in the o ce –but that’s another article.)

SURVIVAL TIPS - REMEDIES:

Ginger Ale or Tea can help. Almonds and bananas can aid in reducing stomach acids. Of course keeping a bottle of calcium-based antacid tablets handy helps also. However, most importantly, never let your stomach go empty. Always keep a light snack close by. I would keep a protein or energy shake at my bedside in a cooler and a container full of almonds. In the night when I woke to make a run for the bathroom I would eat a handful of almonds and drink my shake. I found I was never nauseous when I did this. Some women, however, have a hard time and may need to seek medication to help relieve the nausea.

As long as I can remember I have always wanted to be a mother. In fact, my greatest fear was that I may not be able to have children of my own. On November 14 2013, our wedding anniversary, we welcomed our son into our lives and, over the past few months, this beautiful soul has become my heartbeat.

Being a new mom has been a rollercoaster of emotions, but an amazing and wonderful new period in my

life. However this journey does not begin at birth (which I was asleep for; that’s another article – next edition look out for; ‘Birth Plans and Oh Crap Plans’). Over a 40 week period, give or take a few weeks, pregnancy is a beautiful experience; amazing, lovely…. how many positive adjectives can I fit into this sentence?! In reality, pregnancy was both wonderful and also a very di cult

experience which all serves to prepare you for the hardest and most awesome job on the planet; being a mother.

All major symptoms of pregnancy can of course be related to a physiological occurrence within the mother or baby, but also important to mention are the psychological effects and preparations occurring as a direct result of these aspects. Your body is not only adapting, but so is your psyche, to accommodate your new role in life.

So here is my honest take on the major symptoms of pregnancy, with a few tips and maybe a couple laughs for you to enjoy - at my expense of course.

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Fatigue

Whoa Mama! This is serious and unreal. I passed out at my desk at work a few times, and even drooled a bit on my keyboard. Oh yea drooling is a lovely side effect of pregnancy also – excess saliva. Try chewing gum or ice to help combat the drools, which can also happen while being AWAKE! Yes I said awake…don’t ask.

MENTAL PREP:

The exhaustion experienced during the first and last trimesters heralds the sensation you will feel after the baby is born - for the initial few weeks or months of their life - as you try to develop a rhythm. No one can prepare you for this time, but your body is trying to; to show you that you can function while being exhausted. The sleep deprivation you will experience the first few weeks baby is home is incomparable to any sense of tiredness you felt before. I have some wonderful guardian angels, as I left the stove on all night once because of how tired and just plain out of it I was. You

are able to focus on baby but there is no mental space for anything else – just remember to shower and eat when you can. Whoever said 'sleep when the baby sleeps', didn’t shower or eat or have laundry to do.

SURVIVAL TIPS – REMEDIES:

If you can, rest whenever able to; after all, you are making another human being, and that’s hard work. However, if you have other obligations and rest is not an option, try to ensure you are getting the minimum 6 to 8 hours of sleep a night, or exercise for a natural boost of energy. Make sure your exercise is something that you have been doing prior to pregnancy, or something mellow like prenatal yoga or aquatics. Get the clear from your doctor on any form of exercise during pregnancy. You will want to avoid stimulants as much as possible; for example ca ffeine (which is safe in small doses, maybe just one cup of coffee a day).

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Forgetfulness

Typical example: you get up from your chair to do something, and as you get up, you forgot why you did in the first place. Or how about this? Locking your keys in your car, twice in one week, but thankfully in your own driveway. Simple things elude you, like the moment you placed a full jar of peanut butter in the sink thinking it was a dirty glass to be washed.

MENTAL PREP:

You will soon have another person in your life, demanding your time and attention and it can be overwhelming. I like to think of this sense of confusion as a brain reboot – a sort of reprogramming of your priorities and that teaches you not to take things so seriously. The need to take a step back once in a while and put things into perspective – that peanut butter jar does not belong in the sink, neither does that new pair of shoes in your closet – DAMN!

Frequent Urination

SURVIVAL TIPS – REMEDIES:

List List List! Write a list of your to dos the night before – add to the list the next morning , but try to do this the night before to prevent the night time sleep wipe from preventing you from remembering anything you needed to do the next day. Most importantly, laugh at yourself. As much as I recognised the danger of me locking my keys in the car, the gratitude I felt that it happened in my driveway –twice in one week I have to say again, lead to a crazy fit of laughter.

I have never peed so much in my life! During the first and last trimesters I was waking to run to the bathroom at least 4 times for the night. In the days I had to plan my outings based on when I last went to the potty. NO you don’t go to the supermarket unless you are driving passed your aunt’s house so that you can relieve yourself first and then ensure you get home in the next 2 hours to do so again.

MENTAL PREP:

What does frequent urination have to do with breastfeeding? Everything! When you work it out, you will be peeing every 2-3hrs, sometimes less, which is about the same as how often your little one will be feeding. The fact that you have little to no control over a typical bodily function will be a hint of the lack of control you will feel over your life with your new baby, until you and baby find your rhythm and feeding baby becomes more of a joy than a chore or obligation.

SURVIVAL TIPS –REMEDIES:

Go when you gotta go. Do not hold it in! This can lead to UTIs, which are especially not good when pregnant, or worse an accidental leak during a sneeze, cough or spontaneous laughter. TRUST ME!

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Cravings

For someone who never liked cheesecake or olives, I gotta tell you they became a staple in my diet. The movies like to depict very odd combinations of food for pregnant women, but most times cravings are for regular and typical meals or desserts that we have access to all the time but just feel the need to have ALL the time during pregnancy.

MENTAL PREP:

I like to think cravings are the body’s way of telling Mom to remember herself and to take the time to indulge in her wants also. As new moms we can quickly forget our own desires and wants. Remembering every now and again to hide and have a scoop of

ice-cream or find time for yourself to enjoy a glass of wine is just as important to your psyche as an individual as it is allowing you to continue to treat yourself well, as you learn to care for your new addition.

SURVIVAL TIPS – REMEDIES:

Girl…enjoy yoursel f ! This is the one time you can get away with indulging on that extra piece of cake. Just be mindful and do so in moderation. Try to also snack on healthy sweet treats like raisins or carrot sticks. Yes that’s no comparison for pecan pie, but try to limit your pie intake to a couple days a week rather than every day.

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Mood Swings

I remember bawling my eyes out after I came home from work to find that my husband had eaten my 2-day-old leftover pizza. After receiving an earful, he (God bless his soul) listened to me crying like a 4 year old who lost their favourite toy, and then calmed me down. Needless to say, he never touched my left overs again. With the flip of a switch, you can shift from hysterical laughter to anger to crying your eyes out to a car commercial – don’t judge, there were many emotional car commercials produced during my pregnancy ok!

MENTAL PREP:

Now if no one has said this to you before, take heed now. You will be MEGA hormonal after you have your baby. Your hormones will be out of whack as your body tries to rebalance itself. Warn your significant others – they deserve the heads up. Additionally, welcoming a new soul into the world is an emotional feat to say the least. It can be very taxing and very overwhelming also. Your mood swings during pregnancy are a great pressure gauge for you to assess yourself during the first few weeks with your baby, and can help to ground and refocus you as your deal with the reality of being a new mom.

SURVIVAL TIPS – REMEDIES:

with your brain waves? So keep them positive. Surround yourself with positive people. Ground yourself with prayer or meditation and once again, learn to laugh!

Be gentle on yourself, laugh at yourself, laugh with your spouse at yourself. When your temper flares, try to check your emotional reference and see if it is founded. If not, go someplace quiet and cry it out – it may be best rather than losing your job. Most importantly take it all in stride and remember to enjoy each moment. Your baby picks up on your emotions also – did you know that your baby’s heart rate syncs

Making Womb for Baby is a natural process. We find strengths we didn’t know we had during this time. Ancient civilizations and some New Age practices and faiths look on the woman as a Divine being that most go through three critical stages in her life, each with varying obstacles and lessons to be learned. We mature from Maiden to Mother, and then we learn and develop into the wise old Crone. Being Mother, is a beautiful stage in life, one to be revered and celebrated. Your body is already preparing you for the moments to come, but it cannot prepare you for the immense love that you will soon feel. Get ready for it… here it comes...

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A Boutique Rental Just

All About Baby&Child

We develop a bond with them long before our first meeting. For so many of us, the moment we discover we’re expecting, the dreams begin. Will it be a boy or girl? Who will he or she look like? And by the time they arrive 9 months later, we’re already madly in love. The proverbial ‘ten fingers and toes’ checked off, a plethora of praise sent heavenward, and armed with lots of wise words of ‘what to expect’, we now prepare for each stage of development. We’re sharing some tips as you embark on that great parental journey;raising your little angels.

*Peek-A-Boo, I See You!

Did you know that your newborn baby can’t decipher colour? This, like many skills, develops gradually. Between 2 to 4 months, your baby will start to distinguish bright shades and complicated shapes and patterns. The contrast of black and white is dramatic and will definitely capture baby’s attention much earlier. Engage baby with brightly coloured pictures, books and toys.

Photography: Dwayne Watkins • Wardrobe and Accessories: Hugbug Jamaica, Babeelicious and Wonderboy Collection

*Personality

The development of your baby’s personality started long before she was born. Although still soft and pliable, her personality is a delicate combination of genetics, parenting and social conditioning. But don’t think that because babies are born with certain personality traits, that their development can’t be influenced. Are you Mummy or Daddy to a budding type ‘A’ or type ‘B’ personality? What’s important is getting familiar with your baby’s personality type, encouraging its authentic development and parenting him or her accordingly.

This information is a guide. Children develop at different paces and stages. If you are concerned about your baby’s progress, please see your doctor.

*Sitting Up

By the time baby is about nine months of age, he’ll be able to stay upright, sitting on the floor, for several minutes. It’s interesting to note that at this stage, unless your baby falls, he can’t get himself down, but if he topples over, he will likely get himself back into a seated position. Start looking out for him being able to hold himself seated independently from about 5-6 months old.

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*Eating

Your baby can begin eating solids between 4 – 6 months of age. If exclusively breast-fed, you may want to wait until she’s 6 months old to start solids. Most pediatricians recommend starting with a basic cereal – rice being the most popular. Be patient, and get ready for a bit of mess! Allow them to explore and discover, don’t be too worried about the little spills and inevitable splats which will come! Enjoy watching your little one enter this new phase and remember to be gentle with any ‘hardware’ on their delicate gums. When moving from purees to ‘chunks’, introduce new textures slowly, and keep it at one ingredient for about 3-4 days before trying another to gauge their reaction. Remember that when your baby is full, he’ll stop eating. Never force a baby to eat.

*Seating

Set a solid foundation for future mealtimes. If your baby is able to sit up with his head held upright (between 4 and 6 months), let him have all his meals while seated in a high chair. He’ll make an early association with meals and his chair, and it will save you in the long run from chasing baby to convince him to eat! Consider giving your baby a few “test drives” in the high chair to get him used to it before that first mealtime – one less battle on the actual day of feeding number 1! Now is also a good time to multi task by making a fun game out of ‘buckling up’. ‘Seat safety’ can start here and it will make your seat belt battles in the car so much easier.

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*Hand-Eye Coordination

During your baby’s first year of life, the combination of looking and touching, aka; hand-eye co-ordination, is a critical foundation laid for future skills. Between one and three months of age, you’ll notice those jerky newborn movements becoming smoother as your little one gains more control. Be sure to give your baby toys that will contribute to success in activities that require physical interaction. Encourage them to reach for special toys, and try out a baby gym in the early months. By six months old you’ll really see their skills develop as they pass objects back and forth between hands, and then to you! Get ready for the age old game of baby dropping items for you to pick up, and all the repetition that it brings!

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BABY

*Chat ‘bout!

Mummies, don’t get upset… chances are, your baby will say Dada before he says Mama. Not to worry though… it’s just because ‘D’ rolls off the tongue waaaay easier than ‘M’ (wink wink). Listen out for baby’s first words, which will come along around 10 to 12 months of age. Talk to your baby in order to stimulate his own vocabulary building. Your singing, reading and regular banter will captivate, entertain and educate baby.

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*Creep ‘n’ Crawl

Everyone loves a crawler, whether they’re going forward or backward! There really is no correct way to crawl. This stage is baby’s first step (pun intended) on the road to independence, as he learns to use his body to move around. Baby will start crawling between 6 to 9 months, and then before you know it…you’ll be in pursuit of your big walking baby! Get ready to run, and research child proofing for your home well before your tot reaches this stage.

BABY

This*WalkWay

Your newborn will make her first attempts to stand as early as 4 months and she’ll start bouncing somewhere around the half-year mark. Her first independent step is still to come but expect her to start ‘cruising’ (holding on for supported walking) as she nears one year. She may stand without support, then begin to walk. Some babies may start as early as 7 or 8 months, but the norm is closer to one year. If your baby is not walking by 18 months, you should consult your pediatrician.

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*Nap Time

Your newborn will sleep for about 16 to 18 hours a day. As your baby gets older, by about 6 – 9 months, he will still be sleeping around 14 in every 24 hours, with daytime naps getting shorter. When your toddler hits between 12 – 18 months, he should be averaging 11 – 11½ hours nighttime sleep, and up to 2 ½ hours daytime napping. Babies like and need structure. Every parenting publication will tell you! So get your sleep rhythm going early and you and your baby will 'sing' happily ever after.

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BABY

*Playtime

There’s nothing sweeter than a happy baby. And happy babies love to play! Hold off on the toys for your newborn though, at least until he or she is a few months old. Having a few objects around for her to look at, touch and be intrigued by is perfectly acceptable, but at this stage, baby is completely enamored and perfectly satisfied with you!

A mirror and your singing voice are more than enough in the beginning. As your baby gets older and more interactive, he’ll require greater stimulation. Play dates are still a long way off, since your under-two baby still thinks the world is his/her oyster. For now, from about 11 months he’ll be a pro at parallel play, (playing alongside, but not engaging with another toddler), and will graduate to interactive play date status between 24-36 months.

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Naming Your Baby

Somewhere during your pregnancy or while awaiting your little bundle through other means, you are bound to stumble into the name game. For some it’s an easier road than others.

What’s in a name?

Some opt for Juniors or name their little one’s after their favorite aunt, grandpa or exboyfriend and others go with the significance and meaning of the name. But how do you choose the right name? How do you know if that name will be a reflection on your child’s potential and success? How do you make sure they’re not going to be the kid on the playground who’ll be picked on or worse, beat up because of their name. The truth is, it’s a hard decision to make and it deserves good consideration and thought.

I was named after a soap opera character and my husband and I argued over a name for our daughter for the majority of my pregnancy. People find inspiration in di fferent places. I’ve been caught going through credits of movies and T.V. shows to see if I can find something that’s unique and “flowy”.

More often than not parents-to-be opt to buying one of the million and one baby name books available at their local book store, others search online or comb high school year books. Regardless of where you find it, you’ll be flooded with choices when it comes to finding the perfect name.

The more traditional names of Robert's, David's, Todd’s and Phillip’s are what seems to be light years away for the more popular Aidan, Elijah, Miles, Caleb and Noah of 2011 which were all chart toppers. For the girls the Vanessa’s, Sarah’s, Stephanie’s and Ti ff any’s are now being replaced with the more popular choices such as Isabella, Sydney, Madison, Sophia and Ava, which are also in the top 25 for 2011.

“ THE TRUTH IS, IT’S A HARD DECISION TO MAKE AND IT DESERVES GOOD CONSIDERATION AND THOUGHT. ”
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“ THE PERFECT BABY NAME WILL SPEAK TO YOUR HEART, GIVE YOUR CHILD A GREAT START IN LIFE ”

In my opinion, the key to finding a good name is to find a name that flows – your last name really steers the course of your ship. For instance if your last name ends abruptly then choosing a first name like Tom or Addison isn't going to necessarily flow off the tip of the tongue as easily as maybe Hannah or Mikayla. By the same token, if your last name is flowy and ends in a "Y" or an "A", then you could go for something shorter like Kai or Chloe.

You need to find a name that suits your family, personal taste and style. It’s hard on a little one growing up with a name that would be perfect on an eighty year old man, but not so much on a five year old. Take something like Ezekiel, while it has great biblical significance and gives something for a child to grow into is a bit heavy for an 8 year old to walk around with.

When in doubt, make it up. Some decide that the name thing is too hard or that they want their little one to truly be a product of Mummy and Daddy

and as such decide to combine their names to make something unique. I have some friends named Joey and Natasha and they had Jonah (Jo+nah) as one of their options for their son.

“The perfect baby name will speak to your heart, give your child a great start in life- and maybe satisfy your relatives” , says Laura Wattenberg, writer of The Baby Name Wizard, which was, yes I’ll admit it, the only baby name book I bought. She devised a science to choosing the ultimate baby name. She’s broken every name you can think of into a wide array of categories such as ethnicity, style, regional derivatives, religious background, nick name proof, timeless and name sakes, just to name a few.

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| B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE| 59 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 You don’t have to be perfect, but you can be perfectly you. @emedspaja (876) 648-8180 zoe.arscott@emedspajamaica.com emedspajamaica.com

Wattenberg even provides you with potential sister and brother names so that you can keep all of your children’s names within the same style or theme. I found this tool very helpful to guide me as to choosing names that

“ ...YOU WANT THEIR NAMES TO COMPLIMENT AND INCREASE THEIR OPPORTUNITIES IN LIFE. ”

those who tend to be on the unique end of the scale.

Your baby’s name needs to make you smile and help to create a picture in your mind as to who they’ll turn out to be, what kind of life they’ll live and the kind of accomplishments they’ll achieve. Don’t worry about whether or not your mother-inlaw will like it, the only thing that matters is that it resonates in your heart and that of your partner. And don’t worry, no one seems to like their name anyway and yes, your children will forgive you if you have a lapse of judgment and opt for something like James and your last name happens to be Jameson.

Happy Naming!

would all work together. I have friends who have named their three children Kai, Lucca and Pax – now while they’re all very modern and zen names – they also all work together. If Pax had a sister named Phiona and a brother named Rudolf, heads would definitely turn. And while no one names their children with the "they’s" in mind, you do want to know that you’re not setting your children up for a situation that they succeed in spite of their names – you want their names to compliment and increase their opportunities in life.

That being said – on January 20, 2009 the United States o cially swore in a gentlemen by the name of Barak Obama as their next president and the name game changed quite a bit. Having someone with such a unique name holding such a powerful position, gave a burst of hope to

Elena Diedrick-Lynch is the mother of 2 year old Isabella and owner of Blissful Mummy. com, a blog, advice and local resource site. O ff ering everything from pregnancy tips and baby must haves to how to cope with your baby’s night waking’s, eating issues and tantrums. She also o ff ers a welcome home service for new parents, within Jamaica and the Caribbean.

www.blissfulmummy.com Write to her at blissfulmummy.com@gmail. com

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It can seem like an abyss of grief you don't know how to navigate your way out of; but there is comfort and healing to be had with time and through sharing. So, here are my musings...

On Surviving Miscarriage

Not even the stat that one in five pregnancies ends in miscarriage offered up by my empathetic Doctor that afternoon could provide any comfort. No safety in numbers to be had. By the time I made it there from the scan which confirmed my pregnancy had ended I was already lost in a grief I never knew could be felt over someone I’d never even met.

The news of my pregnancy was not taken for granted. I knew so many couples who desperately wanted children, but for one reason or another it just wouldn't happen for them. So when I was ‘surprised’ with a positive test the precious news was kept private.

I was confident I was doing all the right things to take care of my pregnancy. Google and I became best friends, along with those sites which offer weekly tracking of your baby from microscopic speck onwards. The

pregnancy was confirmed viable, and that first gallop of a heartbeat had been heard. A still flat belly got lots of rubs from me, already wanting keep my unborn child safe. I bought the books and the cocoa butter. Truth is, I felt like a Mother the instant I saw those two lines on the test.

I got the swollen and sore boobs, the fatigue...but, looking back, something just didn't feel right from the beginning. I was dizzy a lot, and very weak. One day, in the rain, I pulled up to my gate. Sitting in a puddle, blocking my way, was a ghostlywhite screech owl. You know where I’m going from this if you’re from the Caribbean, where their association with ‘duppies’ is well fabled. My hand went straight to my belly. I don’t technically consider myself superstitious but on that day I got out of the car and chased that damn bird away (and it was STUBBORN let me tell you!). I had a vague recollection of an old ‘country’ relative telling me that when they came like that, it was the spirit of a loved one there to bring someone 'over' with them....and I actually said aloud at that point: “NO. NOT

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my baby.”

The next few days, my symptoms subsided, which should have been a warning. I felt pretty good actually, until I noticed some spotting. Which got heavier. Which led me to the emergency room ultrasound and to the scene I’ll never forget of the Technician searching in vain for a heartbeat. Turning the screen away so I couldn't see. Telling me she was so sorry but 'it' was over. 'It'. I was inconsolable, and at a little under 10 weeks along I had to do a D & C - which was more invasive than I could have imagined. Some great (read: hard core) painkillers got me through the next few days in a fog; but nothing patched the emotional hurt - the pain of the loss of my child and the feeling of being an absolute failure.

Yeah man, you know Google remained my best friend right? I knew the owl had nothing to do with it. I wanted to know WHY, HOW this happened and WHO else it had happened to. I found comfort then in seeing that I wasn’t, in fact, alone. Prying relatives would ask: “What, no baby yet?”, and it seemed like everyone around me was pregnant in the months that followed. The lingering effect of my miscarriage meant I refused to tell people I was expecting until I was nearly 5 months along with the pregnancy of my son.

I comforted myself with the spiritual (that she was safe with her Maker and we'd meet one day - I’m convinced it was a girl), and the scientific (that when a pregnancy ends so early there was most likely a chromosomal abnormality). The guilt and shame of it gradually fell away. Some advice, next time you want to ask a couple "whaapn' to the baby", think twice. Lie, three times. You never know if they’ve su ffered a private loss and there you go rubbing salt in the proverbial wound. Partners, let your women grieve. We know our men feel it too, so comfort each other. For my ladies who have been through this, my love to you. I won’t preach to keep your head up, and that it’s not 'your fault' (although you MUST know it isn't...) - because I think its natural we wilt and blame when miscarriage strikes. I can’t even tell you HOW I survived. What I can offer is the companionship of knowing you aren’t alone - and that you CAN and WILL survive.

“ I FOUND COMFORT IN SEEING THAT I WASN’T, IN FACT, ALONE. ”

IF YOU HAVE EXPERIENCED A MISCARRIAGE:

• Allow yourself to grieve, crying is amazingly therapeutic

• Talk. Talk to your partner, a friend, your Doctor; there’s no shame in seeking therapy with a counsellor

• Journal your feelings. Write a letter to yourself, to your baby, or to God. Writing offers you the ability to express yourself privately

• If you’ve already set up a nursery, have friends come over and help you take it down…in your time

• Don’t try to forget your baby. Find your own way to remember - whether its planting a tree in your garden or putting up a special piece of artwork in your home

• Allow yourself to be pampered. Don’t feel guilty to take care of you

• Once you’re physically able, try to get some exercise. Walking, running or any other form of activity…It’ll be good for your body and your mind

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Your Baby’s Developmental Milestones

Your new baby is a joy to watch as he grows miraculously before your eyes. He’ll change daily and surprise you each step along the way. Here we highlight some of the milestones to look for. Remember, your Pediatrician is always the best person to advise you of your baby’s actual progress.

AGE

MONTH

0 –1

MOVEMENT VISUAL

Brings hands within range of eyes and mouth

Head ops backward if unsupported

Keeps hands in tight st

Jerky, quivering arm thrusts

Supports upper body with arms when lying on stomach

1-3 MONTHS

Eyes wander and sometimes cross

Loves black and white (or high contrast) patterns

MILESTONES

HEARING/SPEECH SMELL/TOUCH

Recognises some sounds

May turn to familiar voice (especially mother’s)

Follows moving objects Begins using hands and eyes in coordination

Opens and shuts hands

Pushes down on legs when feet placed on rm surface

4 –7 MONTHS

8-12 MONTHS

Rolls front to back and vice versa

Transfers objects from one hand to the other

Uses raking grasp as opposed to pincer grasp

Crawls on belly by pulling arms and pushing legs

Creeps on hands and knees

Pulls self up to stand

Walks holding on to furniture

Stands momentarily May walk a few steps unsupported

Tracks moving objects

Full colour vision matures

Smiles at the sound of mother’s voice

Starts ‘babbling’

Starts imitating sounds

Turns head toward direction of sound

Responds to own name

Can respond to word NO

Babble full sentences

Recognizes emotions by tone of voice

Uses eyes together Able to judge distances

Responds to some verbal requests

Responds to NO

Says Dada and Mama

Recognizes scent of mother’s breast milk

Prefers soft to coarse sensations

SOCIAL COGNITIVE

Loves mirror images

Loves interactive social play

Develops a social smile Enjoys playing and may cry when playing stops Imitates some facial expressions

Cries when leaving mother or father

Shy or anxious around strangers

Finger feed’s self

Prefers regular care-giver to others

Explores with hands and mouth

Imitiates gestures

Identi es correct picture when named

Starts using appropriate objects (comb for hair instead of banging…)

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Editor's Picks! for Mummy

The Caribbean has got some of the most stylish moms on the planet. So with baby sound asleep (if only for a few hours), there’s no better time to steal away for a quickie; a quick date that is. Call it a spark-starter if you will. With the holidays right around the corner, our Mummy Must-Have List will keep any mother (new or not), hot-to-trot. She’ll no doubt be on Daddy’s Nice List, and the naughty part? Well, we’ll leave that up to them.

RiRi Hearts MAC Collection MAC makes Moms Beautiful! We’re loving the classically gorgeous shades from Bajan Pop sensation RiRi, who premieres her perfect palette of lavish colours for the new season. Creamy nudes, deep raisins and vivid reds for the lips, while eyes in soft and smoky cocoas create incredible looks for the hot mom on the town!

Belly Bandit

Are you a new mother? Well, we’ve picked this one just for you! The Organic Belly Bandit by Rosie Pope is every new mom’s best friend designed to ‘bring you back to you’! It’s a post-delivery dream that applies constant medical-grade pressure, which can result in body shaping and muscle memory. See your way back to a flatter belly, slimmer waistline, stronger muscles and a confident attitude. No joke Mums. Tried and proven. By me, and countless others.

10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022
www.bellybandit.com

Baby Bands

Simple is the new sexy. And what a sweet way to commemorate you r baby’s arrival! Available in 14K, 18K and Platinum. Set with pink or blue sapphires or your choice of birthstone. Babybands are available in a brushed or high polished finish. Babybands® are custom ordered to your exact finger size, and you can stack for each child. www.babybands.net

Breathe Tranquil Bubble Bath

Moments for yourself may be few and far between. But take the time to Breathe , and I guarantee you’ll find more time or ’me time’. Indulge in a bath time retreat with Breathe Tranquil Bubble Bath - a breath of fresh air with citrusy hints of grapefruit and orange. It’s no wonder this was on The "O" List as Oprah’s All Time Favorite Things for 2011. www.lolilla.com

Essie Red

If you’re a normal hot-blooded woman, you can probably attest to the amazing lift that a simple mani and pedi can do for your mood! Now, pair that manicure with two coats of Vibrant Crimson by Essie, and you’ll be ready to paint the town, you guessed it – RED! C’mon Mom! It’s the holidays – get your glam on!

www.essie.com

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Now, let me be clear - I don't pretend to be an authority on 'all things baby'! I'm a first time Mother, figuring things out as I go and loving the journey. These are my musings...

OnSurviving theFirst Year

Make no mistake, although the first year goes by in the blink of an eye, there have been moments when I’ve wondered “how will we ever survive?!” (the reflux was a killer). I still have that mental picture of me with my swaddled baby in my arms, sitting in our glider. Weeping. Both of us); and of those up-all-night months at the start of teething. Oh, and of course his first cold. So there have been several. Thankfully, there have been a greater number of ‘AHA moments’ (to borrow a phrase from Ms Oprah hersel f ); times of clarity when things fall into place, when routines develop without you even realising it and when confidence and trust between mother and child grow.

So you survive pregnancy. Need I go into the details? There is the incomparable miracle of feeling a life growing inside you. Feeling those first tentative movements quickly evolve into actual visible prods and pokes. Seeing the ultrasound images from that first confirmation of a steady, galloping heartbeat through to the sex-confirming scan. Having had the total experience, I do exchange looks with pregnant women I don't even know, in solidarity. I remember those hormone swings which have you crying, swearing, laughing (sorry husbands/partners/family members/friends). The inescapable cravings. The rib and bladder kicks. The nausea, insomnia, insecurities, etc.

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MEK THE DROOL RUN!!! ”

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Let me not even start with the whole saga of a natural childbirth. It is nothing short of epic. Mine went pretty much like this: The start of ‘contractions’ during a pedicurewho knew they could feel like a professional footballer (yes, wearing cleats) landing a well placed kick riiiight in the middle of your back with progressively more violence and at increasingly regular intervals. During this time my friends E, T and N were trying to convince me of the inevitable truth, as was my sister. My rebuttal: “No man, I’ll just keep track of these, go home, put my feet up...”. Fifteen hours of denial followed, fueled by my knowledge that my Doctor was off the island (scheduled to return the next morning. Of course). I vaguely remember a useless hot shower, desperately attempted in all my clothes to help with the by then near unbearable pain. There was a hasty exodus at 3:30 am, after somehow taking precious time to apply mascara and do my hair (sheer madness), with a halfasleep husband whom I had sent to bed after firmly denying that I was in fact in labour. A speedy check-in during which they discovered I had gotten there “just in time” (how reassuring) was followed by the au natural birth of my beautiful son about two hours later. As much as I hate to be a cliché, he was worth every back-breaking contraction. Listen, do NOT close your eyes during contractions. Do it and you’ll enter a dark, scary space where its just you and the mind blowing pain threatening to take over what little sanity you have left. Pick a point. Focus. And breathe.

Apparently I got ‘off light’ and, truth be told, I really had a pretty good pregnancy. I had my times when I felt glowing. I enjoyed staying active with walking, swimming, and pre-natal DVD workouts including yoga & pilates right up until the week before I gave birth. Ironically I have never felt more confident in a bikini than when I was nine months pregnant; go figure.

I have not, as the Nurses promised, forgotten the pain as soon as I saw my son’s face. People warn me when I’m ‘oohing’ over the newest born babies of friends: “mind you don’t get broody”. Nope. Not there yet.

Now, I appreciate the words of wisdom

...FOR CUTTING MY SON’S HAIR BEFORE HIS FIRST BIRTHDAY - APPARENTLY I HAVE NOW CURSED HIM TO A LIFE WITHOUT SPEECH.”

from those who have gone before. I must say though, I’ve been fed some real humdingers. I’ve been publicly admonished and had many an eyebrow raised for cutting my son’s hair before his first birthday - apparently I have now cursed him to a life without speech. As for that birth mark on his leg, how DARE I have denied myself a craving, then touched my own leg and ‘marked’ my son (“Look like kidney she wanted. Nuh true?”)?? Another good one was: “Mek the drool run!!!” (this being screamed at me whilst someone quite literally ‘bolt’ed - yes, pun intended- across a crowded churchyard as I raised an arm to wipe my son’s wet-from-teething-induceddrool chin before it drenched his shirt).

I’ve learnt a ‘face’, the good ole’ smile and nod, and a gracious “Ok, thank you”, to present to passersby who have unsolicited, unfounded or sometimes quite hurtful and invasive advice so that I can accept it as gracefully as possible (and then admittedly maybe roll my eyes or take a deep breath after a silent ‘suck teet’ when they depart).

Please know that I’ve not been too proud to gratefully receive and apply some great gems of wisdom, which have made my life (and laundry) easier. Easily near the top of the list are to have those saline drops handy for the first few weeks of stu ff ynoses, to cover nether regions to avoid the ever-feared ‘spraying’ while changing the diaper of your

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GET OUT YOUR LITTLE VIOLINS,

I ENJOY MY SON. THOROUGHLY ”

new young man and to make sure you take those little flu ff y socks off newborn kicking feet before changing a diaper-get a mental image of that going wrong. Forget the fancy toys, the packaging wins out. Every time. The best advice - to make sure I trust myself and my instincts. They haven’t failed me yet. And of course to pray-a lot.

My son is healthy, happy and a joy to be around. He is blessed with a wonderful Father, and we have an assortment of family and friends who love our boy without reservation. Its been a blessing to me personally that some of my closest friends are new Mummy’s themselves (and to our cell service!). I cannot overemphasise the importance of a routine (*note that I don’t use the word schedule here since babies have their own clock, but I’ve found a routine KEY to anticipating his needs). I’m learning the therapeutic effect of talking to myself/my baby, to allow myself a moment to feel like a failure, to forgive myself when I feel I’ve faltered, and to revel in the triumphs, no matter how small they may seem. Never before have I really appreciated the restorative power in a deep breath, or the sanctuary that is a hot shower. We have great ‘talks’, he’s an opinionated little guy, taking on the world fearlessly with his own inimitable language. Dancing around (he’s partial to soca), beach trips, anything to do with water, ‘singing’ (finally someone who appreciates my voice!), reading and painting are some favorite activities for us, and I hope to instill a love for books and the arts in him along with his already natural boyish a nity for lizards, balls and cars. No pressure baby boy. No pressure...

My life has been refocused in a way I cannot describe, and forced me to really take a long hard look at myself while reevaluating, well, just about everything. I’ve learnt how to multitask like never before (one has to in order to pull all nighters when your baby decides he is pulling one too; to learn do pretty much everything one handed; or to be able to do leg lifts while he finds it wildly amusing shoving his fingers up your nose). He’s given me the courage, passion and the power to unashamedly pursue my dreams. He is the definition of unconditional love. I finally am beginning to ‘get’ the love my own

Mother tried to describe to me years ago...Yes, and you may get out your little violins, I enjoy my son. Thoroughly. So bring it on Year Two. Mi ready (just give me a day or so to remove all dangerous objects in his nowwalking reach).

Until next time - waddle on, walk good and enjoy the journey.

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* C o n d i t i o n s A p p l y * .

...AND KEEPS GETTING BETTER

Not even the torrential rain that greeted us on what was supposed to be a “sun-shiny” photoshoot morning in Kingston, could dampen Tami’s pregnancy glow.

As cliche as the ‘glow’ may be, take our word and check out for yourself just how much pregnancy ‘grees’ with the songstress who has become a household name – a sweetheart, if you will, who is loved and respected by so many. Join us as we spend a little...

TUMMY TIME with TAMI

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By: Michelle Gordon and Claire Stewart Photography: Dwayne Watkins Makeup: Paul March Styling: Angelie Spencer Wardrobe: drennaLUNA

She’s married to ace DJ and entertainer Wayne Marshall, and step-mother to 7-year-old Giomar.

Tami Chynn steps from behind the glitz and glamour of show business and introduces us to Tammar Annika Chin-Mitchell, an easy-going, down-to-earth, girl next door. She disarmed us with a laugh so genuine, and an aura so sweet, it’s hard to believe that this is the same person who has transformed into diva-mode, and rocked audiences worldwide. Tami is an entertainer, who embraced her roles on stage with the highest standards of professionalism. “I was born to perform”, she states. But now, as she prepares to welcome her firstborn, Tami is ready for her greatest performance yet.

If being happy were the remedy for an easy delivery, then Tami is in for a treat! It’s hard to be around this lady and not laugh. And I’m not talking about a mild chuckle. You know the kind of laugh that makes your belly move? Well, that’s what I’m talking about. And if there’s any truth to what ‘they’ say about the transfer of emotions from mother to baby, then this little man here (it's a boy!) is bound to be one happy kid. Guaranteed. And Tami has good reason to be happy. “I’m married to an amazing man who allowed me to prepare for this moment in my life”. Tami speaks of her role as stepmother to Gio, as playing a defining part in making her ready to welcome and parent her own child. “I’ve learned life lessons about love, and patience and understanding, but above all, I’ve learned that happiness is a choice. We don’t always choose all the things that happen to us, but we can always choose how to react.”

ON BEING MOM

B3: Have you always wanted to have children?

Tami: Definitely! My mother was a stay-at-home mom, so it was always my dream to become a mother too. I grew up in a large family of 5 children, (three girls and two boys), and a million cousins - so there was lots of love and hugs to share. I would have started long ago, but I had plans that had to be fulfilled, and goals that I had to achieve. I’ve put a check in all those boxes, and now that I’ve started [to have children], I don’t think

I’ll be able to stop. [insert belly laugh here]. Wayne says if we have more than three, they’ll have to homeschooled!

Were you ever scared about being a ‘stepmother’?

Oh yes! There’s a pre-conceived notion of the ‘evil step –mother’, and that was a scary thought. In the beginning I didn’t know where my relationship (with Wayne) was going, so yes, there were reservations. But Wayne and Regina, (Gio’s mom), gave me the chance to step into the role. It was drama-free, and continues to be a wonderful network of love and trust and cooperation. It’s a net that really works. [insert belly laugh]

ON BLENDING

From all appearances, you guys seem to be testament to a successful blended (and blending!) family. Has it always been so seamless having a relationship with the mother of Wayne’s firstborn, and developing your role as a step-mother?

If Regina wasn’t who she is, this couldn’t work, and that’s the truth. Gio is her child, and I have to respect that. And she too respects the fact that I am Wayne’s wife. It’s easy to expect ‘baby-mama-drama’, but Regina gave me a new model to look at. She has set a high bar for mothers who have to ‘share’ their children. I’m not telling anyone how to live their life, but if people take the focus off themselves and put it on the child, where it belongs, there’s a world of happiness to be had. When it comes to Gio, I speak to Regina more than I do Wayne. [insert that laugh again]

A successful story like that must have taken dedicated work on several sides, so what have been your biggest challenges as a blended family?

Scheduling! It can get confusing around here. Whose day is it for pick-up? Where are these shorts? I thought they were at your house! [belly laugh]. But seriously, in a family like ours, decisions aren’t made just by two people, so we have to communicate freely and often. Our common denominator is Gio, so we all have to make choices and decisions with his best interest at heart. And for me, being the step-mother, I have to know when to step back.

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Talk to us a little about your relationship with Wayne. We’ve witnessed the obvious friendship and fire! (Wayne interrupted our photoshoot with a playful ‘unnu tek time with mi wife!’)

[starts with laugh this time] This is easy. We started out as friends; friends who had a common love for music, and a genuine respect for each other’s craft. Wayne is a ‘laugher’ like me, [you guessed it folks… insert belly laugh] so our friendship was built on laughter. He makes me laugh. A lot. It sustains us, and keeps us connected, and considering our careers, staying connected is a key component. We became bona fide friends whose love grew deeper with each encounter. I believe that’s where so many couples go wrong…. We’re not in love 24 ⁄ 7, but each day, we operate not just as man and wife, but from a friendship level. I like to say that I don’t just love him, I like him.

ON FATHERHOOD

When Wayne became a father, how did seeing him in that role affect you?

When Wayne became a Daddy, we weren’t yet dating, so I came into Gio’s life, not the other way around. [laugh] We were friends at the time, and I was very happy for him. He matured a lot, and if it wasn’t for Gio, I would not have known Wayne as I do now. I saw my friend embrace his role as a Dad like he was born to do it. He became his guardian and protector.

What kind of father is he?

Wayne is naturally a very caring man. But the moment he became a father, he became even more amazing. He sees himself in his son, and takes being involved to a whole new level. Gio and our baby, are very lucky to have Wayne as a daddy, and friend. He is very serious about the responsibility of parenting, and he’s keen on setting the best example of being a good man. Gio is at the

age where he loves to ‘par wid Daddy’, and Wayne relishes the role.

You’re in the limelight and raising a family. How do you protect your private life from the public.

In the beginning it was hard. We were trying to get to know each other, and it was a little challenging with so many people having something to say. But we’re both pretty open, and honest, so we’ve been able to strike a good balance between what we share and what we keep private. It has become easy for us, because we feel the same way about the same things and we understand each other. Wayne knows my personality. Like when we found out about our pregnancy, he knew I just had to post pics and share my joy; and that was okay with him. If there’s something we opted to keep to ourselves, we decide that together. For Gio, and soon for our baby, we’re just a normal family – that won’t change.

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ON BEING A STEP-MOM

Gio has been the centre of your attention for seven years. Are you and Wayne nervous about introducing him to his baby brother?

Early in the pregnancy we were a little nervous. But now, not at all. We have prepared Gio well, I think, so he’s super excited. He’s away for a bit and advised me recently that if he hears that the baby is coming, he’ll be there in a flash, “cause this naah miss me!”

How has your relationship with Gio evolved?

I’ve been a part of Gio’s life for as long as he can remember, so there’s nothing happening that’s out-of the-ordinary. The thing is, Gio is a very smart kid. I believe that our honesty and openness as a blended family make it easy for him to understand changes. He sees ‘other’ families, and knows that he is blessed to have two homes.

I CAN’T WAIT FOR MORE CHILDREN. I AM SO HAPPY RIGHT NOW, I KNOW THAT I AM GOING TO MISS BEING PREGNANT. MY PREGNANCY HAS BEEN A HUGE FULFILLMENT FOR ME , AND I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO MANY MORE. (Y’HEAR THAT WAYNE?)

Two well-adjusted homes – so this is his normal. He is about to become a big brother and right now, he’s as excited as can be.

What do you enjoy doing with him?

Everything. We love going to the movies. It’s a great date time for us, sometimes it’s just Gio and me, and sometimes it’s all of us. And I just love surprising him! He loves it. There’s something amazing about making a child happy, and you know how I feel about happy! [laugh] Gio is also a very witty kid. Chatting with him at night takes on a di fferent dimension when Gio starts giving jokes. He’s very funny and very a ffectionate. I can’t wait for him to share with his brother!

You look like the super-cool mom who the children will run to when they need a yes. Are you? hahhahahaha! Not at all! That’s Wayne. I’m the strict one. Gio, and his friends, [laughter continues] know not to mess with Aunty

Tami. And baby will learn in short order too! Wayne is the yes-man, so by virtue of that, I do the homework, and the extra lessons, and the music practice… hmph! [laugh]

Can you imagine yourself being pregnant again, or is this one and done?

More like ‘guh hard and done’! [insert belly laugh]. I can’t wait for more children. I am so happy right now, I know that I am going to miss being pregnant. My pregnancy has been a huge fulfillment for me, and I’m looking forward to many more. (y’hear that Wayne?)

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Leather Sofa: ARD2K

ou have to go for the girl now right?

You know what? I used to want a girl, but now, I think I’m definitely a boy-mom. I mean…I’ll take what I’m given, but three boys, and then maybe one girl sounds perfect!

ON MARRIAGE

You really planning to ‘live what you learn’! How much do you think your parents influenced your thinking today?

Oh man…a whole lot! My parents taught us [me and my siblings] how to love. And though they’re divorced today, the lessons they taught us were not lost. The love they showed and taught us was a love based on respect and friendship. In loving another person, you learn that each person makes choices, and whether or not you like their choice, that should have no bearing on the love you have for them. Mom and Dad were best friends who recognised and accepted that they were better apart. That was their reality and it worked for them. My mother is now re-married, and my father is in a relationship, and they still speak almost every day. You can’t discount a solid friendship.

Did their divorce affect you?

Yes, I was happy because they were happy! They divorced about 5 years ago, so we (siblings) were all adults, and able to process the divorce sensibly.

Has your outlook on marriage been affected?

No. I really haven’t given it much thought, because I honestly respected their choices. In marriage, you don’t have to, and probably won’t agree on every single thing, but when it’s necessary, couples must learn to ‘agree to disagree’. And that’s a lesson well-learned in so many other areas of life. My parents met at 14, and now at age 63, being apart, they continue to teach us. I believe in new possibilities at every age and stage of life. The end of an era doesn’t have to mean the end.

How do you think baby’s arrival will change your relationship with Wayne?

You know, my mother in her wisdom, gave me some advice that I hold dear to my heart. She told me that she made the mistake of putting her children first. At first, I didn’t fully understand, but as we spoke further, it became clearer. She explained that after we all grew

up, and out, she was left with a husband she no longer knew. I have vowed to keep my marriage alive. The truth is I’m about to fall in love with another guy here. [points to her tummy, and laughs of course]. It’s so easy to give love where we get it right back – from children. It’s easily reciprocated, and takes much less work than a relationship with a spouse. But those children won’t be there forever. I don’t want to be left with a vacant relationship with my husband after the children are gone. So for me, I definitely keep our love alive! Hmmm, I also want to say self first. Yes, self, then husband, children, then career. We feel selfish doing it, but then we neglect ourselves. A happy wife equals a happy life, right? Makes sense to me if I want to stay happily married. But it only works when the husband does the same.

ON STYLE

You’re an effortless fashionista, are you looking more forward to getting your little man styled sharply?

You know…I’m kind of old fashioned - I like to see a baby in diapers and that’s it. Kinda simple if you ask me. I mean, if we’re heading out, sure… he won’t be a baby for long, so nice little outfits will be in order, but when we’re home we’re in relax mode. We received tons of great gifts for the baby, including some super-duper outfits bought by Daddy, who obviously has an agenda. [DWL] The other day I had to ‘draw brakes’ on some of the shopping… “Bredrin…which dance yu want tek my pickney go? [belly laughter tun up here].

I can imagine. With both parents being hot steppers on the style scene, I don’t see where he’ll have much choice!

Not just us… Both of his Grandma’s are fashionistas. And my father! Now there’s a hottie. And my older sister – I was her dolly. So he’s in for some style lessons for sure. His saving grace will be Tess - she was the tomboy. [laughter]

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ON SISTERLY LOVE

You and your sister Tessanne are really close - has your relationship changed since you became pregnant?

Apart from the fact that I have another set of hands touching my belly? No changes really. Tess and I are almost Irish twins. We’re very close in age – I was born in June, and she came along in September of the following year. We did everything together and have always supported each other from day one. When I found out I was expecting, Tess was my first call after Wayne. She’s so very happy for me. You’d think it was happening to her.

Are you worried about making time for each other once the baby arrives?

Worried? No. Tess will be here. She’s my rock, and I know she’ll be on spot as Aunty Tess, Sister Tess, Babysitter Tess…in every way. She’ll be here for me.

Have you started pressuring her for cousins for your son?

Tami: No. Tessanne is on a mission. She is very goal-oriented, and extremely focused. This is not her time for babies. This is her time to shine in her career, and shine she will! I like to say that she’s last, so she’ll have the babies last. [that laugh again]

Do you see your career changing after your baby is born?

Yes. It’s changed already. My career is not my main focus at the minute. It requires me to be up and about. Writing, in studio, traveling, the whole nine yards that comes with being an entertainer. I want to give my son a solid portion of my time. For now, I don’t want to be worried about getting back in shape in the shortest possible time, or scheduling tours. And to be honest, I think I’ve lost some desire. I realize I’m not just giving birth to a baby, but something else is being born. I not sure what’s next career-wise. There are times when it’s confusing for me because I’m passionate about my music. I really do love music, but I don’t love it enough. Even before my pregnancy, I felt it’s time for something else… We’ll see.

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Tami’s Thoughts

Labour. How you feeling about that?!

Excited. Although, I encounter women every day who have advice to give me on this and that. They all want me to labour the way they did – drugs, no drugs… [hah] I’m doing my own thing, and very excited. I can’t wait!

What have been your pregnancy must haves?

Pepper. Liver. And large salads. I’ve been a complete carnivore or complete vegetarian. So spicy liver with a salad on the side – heaven!

Most beautiful things about being pregnant

Knowing that I made a baby!

Most downright ugly things about being pregnant

Skin breaking out.

My feet have grown – ugh! They better shrink, cause I’ve got tons of shoes!

My heavy breathing. – I’ve become Darth Vader’!

What are you looking most forward to?

Seeing and holding my son for the first time.

Dreading the most?

Sleepless nights. I LOVE to sleep. I suspect I’m fighting a losing battle, so bring it on regardless.

One thing your fans out there don’t know about you which you want them to I’m pretty open, so that’s tricky. They already know.

Top 3 tips for first time preggers?

Get maternity pants!

Advice–givers mean well. Smile, nod, take what you want and leave what you don’t.

Do you – your way and don’t stress.

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Mommy Brain Syndrome

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A good memory is a blessing. Some persons are exceptionally gifted at remembering almost everything. For the majority of us, we remember important things. Most persons have average cognitive ability when it comes to remembering names, numbers and schedules. Though there is normal decline in memory as we age, it is said that this basic memory function is affected after women have children. For some mothers it’s a slight forgetfulness, while others have trouble committing anything to memory.

...IF YOU FORGET THE PERSON YOU MET LAST WEEK, THAT’S UNDERSTANDABLE. BUT FORGETTING A PHONE NUMBER YOU CALL EVERYDAY MAY BE A RED FLAG.

Referred to as everything from maternal absent-mindedness to being scatteredbrained, mommy brain is experienced by several mothers. Whatever you want to call it, the phenomenon is real, and understandably so. From the beginning of pregnancy to having a toddler, your life as a mother goes from zero to sixty. You are

now not only responsible for yourself but also have the additional responsibility of another human being, who is totally dependent on you. So if you forget the person you met last week, that’s understandable. But forgetting a phone number you call everyday may be a red flag.

THE SIGNS

You walk into a room for something, and then stand there wondering why you’re there and what it is you are supposed to be doing. You just cleaned the baby’s pacifier and have no idea where you put it. You’re on

your way out and realise you’re in your bed slippers. Some amount of forgetfulness happens to everyone. However, a sign of mommy brain syndrome is the frequency of these situations of being absent-minded.

THE SOLUTION

Mommy brain doesn’t have to keep you back. Here are a few simple tips to help you stay on top of things.

1. Write it down. Feel free to make a note of important things you have to do. Place notes to yourself where you will see them, like on the fridge or put reminders in your cell phone.

2. Schedule it. Make a schedule. Nothing complicated, just a guideline for your day’s or week’s activities. Jot down pick-up times, supermarket trips and anything else for which you need to carve out time.

3. Automate it. Anything that can be done automatically will definitely help you stay on point. Pay bills and do transfers online, make use of technology and cut down time spent away from home.

The bottom-line is, don’t be too hard on yourself. You are bound to experience a little forgetfulness. The next time you leave your coffee on top of the car, or misplace your keys, remember you’re not alone. Several moms all over the world share the hectic, rewarding journey that is being a mom. Pregnancy and motherhood are some of the biggest tasks you will undertake in your life. The numerous things you have to accomplish in 24hrs with little-to-no sleep can be overwhelming. Utilising the tips given may not completely conquer mommy brain, but you can significantly reduce its effects. When in doubt, take a deep breath and take a minute to pull yourself together then continue being the awesome mom you know you are!

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Good Move

Moving
Young Family
With A
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Jamaica

Moving is a lot like losing weight – as much as you hate the process, sometimes you just have to go through it. Moving with a young family can be chaotic, but if you organise things in stages you can retain your sanity.

Ideally, you should give yourself two months to get organised for the big day. This gives everyone time to adjust to the idea of moving and allows you to ensure the packing doesn’t drive you completely mad. Here are some great tips on how to make your move easier on everyone:

PRE-MOVING DAY

Make sure you have all of your supplies. Call around to supermarkets and find out when they have their deliveries and have them put up some boxes for you. Make sure you get some strong packing tape and markers to identify each box.

Get your kids involved with the move by giving them jobs like stacking books and DVD’s (the non- breakables) in smaller boxes. Have the kids decorate the boxes while you’re packing.

Help your little ones with an activity on moving day. Organising a play date for them or put together a ‘Moving Day Activity bag’ with snacks, juice boxes and quiet activities like colouring books and crayons, books to read, or the family iPad with some new stories or games for them to explore. This will ensure little ones are safely occupied and out of the way of big boxes and furniture coming in.

Getting your family ready to move presents a great opportunity to trim the fat and de-junk. Put three boxes in your children’s rooms; tag them as “ Keep, Give Away and Sell”. If you’re like me you might also want a “Dump” box for anything that can’t be cleaned up to be given away. You can even go a step further by implementing the six-month rule – if you haven’t seen it or used it in six months, put it in the “Give Away” or “Junk” pile.

We all want to teach our kids good morals and values, and incorporating a charity box is a great way to do that. Teach your children from an early age that they don’t always need

to keep everything – especially when they’ve outgrown it. Use the same six-month rule with your kids’ toys and books. If you’re tired of reading the same story night after night they might be too. Ask them how they feel about sharing the book with some other children who might enjoy it more – empower them by having them place it in the charity box. For children that are writing, have them write little notes that will go along with their old stu ffed animals, books or toys so the next owner can appreciate where it’s from.

*NOTE: The charity box can be kept in the house after you move and at each gift-receiving opportunity have your child choose one item for every new gift they receive that they’re willing to give away to another needy child.

Make a simple checklist for each room of what must be packed. You can find some easy templates online; my favourite is on realsimple.com. Sit your children down and help them write their own lists so that when it comes time to pack they can make sure what they want comes with them.

Number the boxes that come out of each room – so if you have 4 boxes for your son’s room make sure you write “1 of 4, 2 of 4” etc. Boxes can be easily misplaced or left behind and this way we make sure your kids have all of their stu ff where they can find it which will make the readjusting to a new space that much easier.

If your family is like mine, you may tend to accumulate a lot of stu ff. Make a note of the contents of each box by its number, so when you reach your new house you can make it a home that much faster by knowing exactly where to find those indispensable items.

Always organise the bedrooms first, and make the children's room your top priority. If night falls while you’re still very much in the throes of your move they can go to bed and feel a sense of normalcy because they have their own space set up.

Packing your life and your stu ff into boxes to move into a new house can be stressful, but if you organise yourself and stay focused on the goal you can teach your children to do the same and help them adjust and quickly make your new house a home. Happy Moving!

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The Makings Of A Great Childhood

I couldn’t have been older than seven, maybe eight years old. It was the summer holidays, and not yet time for our annual trip ‘abroad’. The days were long, and had to be filled by imagination and wonder. The luxury of iPads and Apple TVs was still about 30 years off at that point, and children still had to be entertained. JBC (the Jamaica Broadcasting Corporation – then the only television station) would sign on at 4p.m., so between waking up, and that heavenly hour when we got to watch Ruff n Ready and Batfink, my sisters, friends and I did just about everything we could to fill that gap.

If nothing else, we were creative. We had to be, and I’m glad we were. They say imagination fosters learning, but I believe it fosters a whole lot more than that. These were the days of childhood past where friendships were formed, characters were built, and memories that last were made. From sun up until sundown, imagination, wit and creativity occupied our days. I’d say the iPad generation has nothing on us!

If we really think about it, childhood is the time in life, where happiness should be the order of the day - everyday. The only thing that should bring a tear or two, should be the occasional cut and scrape. That’s it. There’ll be plenty of time for work, worry and responsibility - later. So for now, let’s pack every ounce of pure, unadulterated happiness into the lives and memories of our children. We have but one chance, let’s make it count! So what makes an amazing childhood?

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hildren will be children, no matter where in the world they live. But here in the Caribbean, we’re blessed with the canvas of sunshiny days and warm breezes almost 365 days of the year. What better palette could any youngster want to paint the perfect portrait of his childhood?

PLAY TIME

“Turn off that television and go play outside!” If you’ve ever uttered those words, or a variation of same, then you’re sure to understand the passion of a parent who sometimes wishes the TV would disappear with the twitching of her nose. According to the World Bank Indicator for Latin America and the Caribbean, 88.3% of all households in the region now have access to television services, and have television sets in their homes. This simply means that more children are able to watch television today, as opposed to a generation ago, when only approximately 72% of Caribbean homes were equipped with television sets.

This, coupled with the phenomenal growth in electronic entertainment offered by handheld devices and wireless gaming, sets the stage for an even greater challenge for parents to encourage our children to get outdoors.

For the most part, we’re ‘preaching to the converted’. Most parents agree that outdoor play is best for their children. We polled 30 parents, on 7 islands about their parenting practices, and all state that they include at least 1-2 hours of outdoor play for the children age 3 – 12 years.

C
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LEARNING MORE THAN LEMONADE...

Although not a Caribbean original, the lemonade stand is a classic way to engage your child’s desire to have fun while beating the island heat. It also presents an incredible opportunity to teach your child some valuable money lessons – with the right guidance; you may just foster some entrepreneurial skills in the process.

From making the lemonade, to seeing their first satisfied customer, your children will have a great time at every stage. Be sure to supervise them during the process, and don’t ‘take over’ the fun.

Add some baked goods (cookies or cupcakes are a perfect choice), to the lemonade stand, and they’re bound to have a great day! Create hand-written flyers ahead of time and distribute to neighbours, this way, they’ll be sure to have customers come by. Encourage your child to use proceeds from the lemonade stand wisely. This can be the money they put toward buying that toy he or she wants so badly, or it could go to a charity of their choice. You may be surprised at how carefully they’ll spend their money – now that they did the work to earn it!

THE LEMONADE STAND

IS A CLASSIC WAY TO ENGAGE YOUR CHILD’S DESIRE TO HAVE FUN WHILE BEATING THE ISLAND HEAT.”

LIFE LESSONS LEARNED EARLY

I recently saw a group a nine children, aged 3 – 8 years-old, solve a problem. They had to choose two teams to play a game, which required an equal number of players on each side. They did the math, and quickly realised that one team was outnumbered. After trying unsuccessfully to con a grown-up into balancing the other team, they decided amongst themselves, that one person would have to sit out the game. Needless to say, that one person was not happy. So after a fair amount of youthful debate, they established a rule – if ever there was an ‘odd person out’, that person became the o cial judge. I watched with pride, because they recognised they had a problem and created their own solution, with no adult interference whatsoever. Not surprisingly, the position of the judge soon after

became quite coveted!

Children have fun when they play games, but it is also a great opportunity to teach that you win some, you lose some. In their perfect little worlds, young children often believe that Mummy and Daddy can fix any and every problem. So it’s natural that they turn to you when something goes wrong – even during play time. While games help introduce children to the di cult reality that a lot of life is beyond our control, the onus falls on us as parents to apply that knowledge appropriately in order get the best results.

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WHAT’S THE BIG DEAL WITH WINNING?

“I tried my best, but I still didn’t win!” says the 3 year-old boy to his mummy. A familiar cry at many Sports Days, and one that requires just the right amount of compassion, with a bit of tough love to illicit the ideal effect.

Losing happens; it’s a natural part of life. It’s the learning-to-lose gracefully part that poses the challenge. If we place the emphasis on ‘trying your best’, and not on coming first, half the battle would already be won.

Save for Solitaire, just about every game includes the task of taking turns. Waiting is hard, even for some of us grown-ups, so imagine what a child, who wants every turn to be his, must go through. It’s hard for them to learn, and also hard for us to teach. But, this is the same foundation set when we say - “Do not interrupt Mummy while I’m on the phone”. Do you have any idea just

HERE ARE A FEW TIPS ON RAISING A GRACEFUL WINNER OR LOSER.

• Don’t let your child win. Play games with your child, and whenever you do, be fair. If he loses, make sure to be gracious yourself. If he sulks, encourage good sportsmanship, and if he wins, be sure to demonstrate the same.

• Teach your child to congratulate others when they win. The gesture of a handshake sets the foundation for a solid business practice incorporating integrity and good wishes.

• Recognise any small steps of growth and tell your child how proud you

TAKING TURNS

how hard that is to do, when your threeyear-old needs to tell you something right away? (Ever noticed that that’s when they just MUST tell you something?) For so many children, who think that it’s ‘all about them’, this is an important way to teach them that others have needs as well. It’s also the same foundation we set for their balanced development and overall success in life.

are of his efforts at handling loss. Hearing kind words after a loss will help to ‘ease the hurt.’ Talk about what happened and always encourage him to try harder next time.

• Children need validation. It gives them the security they need to be confident in life. But it’s important to know that winning does not validate. Trying does.

Waiting develops self-control – a critical component of character-building.

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Ask any 30 - or 40 -something islander today what was one of their favourite things to do when they were growing up, and you’re sure to hear ‘eat’. We’re not talking about the major meals here… I’m referring to the in-between meals, the filler-uppers and the little snacks that we weren’t allowed to have before dinner. “Don’t spoil your appetite!”

Well, the more things change, the more they stay the same. From the western-most tip of Negril, Jamaica, to the most easterly point of Long Bay, Barbados, Caribbean snacks remain vital in the life of a child.

Think fresh fruit, banana chips, natural sugar cane, tamarind balls, mango chow, and ‘dollar’ pholourie.

SNACK TIME

We have however gotten smarter, wiser and more conscious of the implications of eating unhealthy foods. In1991, The Caribbean Food & Nutrition Institute introduced Project Lifestyle, a pilot project launched in several islands aimed at introducing concepts of weight control, healthy eating and physical exercise into the public school curriculum. So today’s Caribbean parent proudly prepares foods for their children that are good for them, and provide balancing results. Obesity in the Caribbean is on the decline, and coupled with more outdoor playtime, these statistics stand to improve even more.

*

Just about all homes in the Caribbean have access to a beach! For some it is just a short walk, and for others an exciting family trip. After all, this is the Caribbean! You can pack a picnic basket, or not. Good food is never far away.

Little else conjures up such excitement in young children as a day at the beach. So many Caribbean children learn to swim at the beach; a great combination of learning a useful skill while having fun. And fun those beach days were – jumping or diving from the jetty, swimming to the reefs, underwater

BEACH TIME

acrobatics, and water wars. For those too young to venture out into the deep, the joys on the sand were just as fun. Children revel not just in building sand castles and carvings, but the joy of covering friends and family in mounds of sand, always evoked shrieks of laughter.

Heading to the beach? Be sure to pack all you’ll want and need to have a great day. Sunscreen is a must. And don’t forget toys for the children to play with. If you have non-swimmers in your family, take along your floatation devices. The Caribbean sun

can be brutal, so be sure to take enough cold water for everyone in your party. And last, but certainly not least…your camera – there are sure to be many ‘kodak’ moments, so don’t leave home without it!

The CFNI is a specialized Centre of the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) that serves a total population of about six (6) million.
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Children who play outside become more adventurous than those who don’t. They also develop a keen understanding of identifying and assessing risk. Try

I remember the excitement my son felt just prior to starting Kindergarten at age 4. “Let’s go to school Mummy,” his little lisp was so cute that first early morning. We parted in class without tears or drama, and I was so very proud. The following day however, he protested. “I already went to school, Mummy…yesterday.”

There are many realities of childhood that children cannot escape. School is one

GETTING DIRTY

gardening – get them their own gardening tools, dedicate a spot in the yard for them, buy them some seeds…and let them loose! They’ll get dirty, but they’ll also have fun,

SCHOOL TIME

of them. And for good reasons too. This is one of the first replicas of structured society that your child learns. Rules and regulations must be followed, actions have consequences and respect for authority is instilled. These are key lessons taught in the Caribbean school system. Choosing the school your child will attend is not a decision to take lightly. This is where your child will receive extensive influence on his

SERIOUS TIME aka DISCIPLINE

and you may get some tomatoes in the process.

educational experience, including his habits, socialisation, discipline and governance structures.

We are equipping the next generation with the tools to keep the Caribbean vibrant and productive. Encourage and support education programmes in your area. Mentor a child. Get involved in your child’s education.

I recall with extreme clarity, the way I was punished as a child. Not often, I might add, for I was a good child. (insert laughter here) Once caught, (it didn’t count if I wasn’t caught) and found guilty of whatever infraction I was charged with, my father would advise me that when he got home from work, after he had his dinner and read the paper, I was to retrieve the cane from

its resting place. (Yes, he had a 3 foot cane that whinnied through the air on its descent to my hand). Now, please understand that I would have to endure this thought throughout the entire day while awaiting my punishment that evening. Can you say torture??? In retrospect, I suppose that was his plan, because his beating/spanking was so well-planned and controlled that it

was never as painful as anticipated. But I still cried. Hollered even, probably out of embarrassment more than anything else. But my father taught me a valuable lesson. Never punish a child in anger. His giving ‘notice’ gave us both time to think; him about not killing me, and me about what I did.

Today, there are so many ways to

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discipline a child. Time-outs, withholding fun activities, and removal of rewards are widely used. And while certainly no longer as common, spanking is still practised as a

means of discipline. Let me just add that the same father who meted out such calculated punishments to me, now vehemently opposes any spanking of his grandchildren.

CHURCH TIME

When I was a little girl, there was a reverence that I had for Sundays that di fferentiated that day from all others in the week. The air waves sounded di fferent on Sundays. Memories of Skeeter Davis and Sam Cooke make me smile, and a ‘drive out’ after dinner, became as sure as rain. Sunday School was a must, and my sisters and I

went each Sunday, (kicking and screaming nonetheless.) We didn’t go to one of those fun, music-filled churches. Ours was more along the traditional lines dictated by routine and boredom (sorry Mummy), but it did provide us with a very important foundation for our lives. We were exposed to God, and taught about faith, hope and love;

TV TIME

It’s not all bad. We often speak about the ills and harmful effects of the television, without giving much credence to any positive influence that it may have.

Television can have a positive effect on children who watch ageappropriate programmes which have a positive emphasis. . Remember your TV

WELLNESS TIME

All the trimmings of a happy childhood are enhanced by a healthy child. Ensure your child is fully immunized according to the requirements of your local Health Ministry.

Provide your child with a healthy, balanced diet, and be sure to supplement his diet with age-appropriate vitamins.

Hah!

“He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes..… Proverbs 13:24

something I believe grounded me, and kept me together.

Just as children need the validation of a loving parent, they also need a foundation of faith that will help to define them as they become increasingly independent.

habits ultimately set the foundation for your child’s TV habits as well. So be sure to set a standard that you’re comfortable dealing with.

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7Myths About Natural Black Hair

There has been a hair revolution recently; a movement of sorts to have women wear their naturally amazing tresses freely and authentically. This movement has brought with it some less than accurate truths about black hair, and by black hair we mean kinky hair. The term “kinky” refers to tightly coiled, thick tresses often categorized in the hair industry as 4B or 4C hair. Though the standards may di ffer for everyone, here are some common misconceptions about this texture hair.

MYTH 1: Natural Hair Is Healthier Than Relaxed Black Hair.

Properly maintained hair is the only form of healthy hair! Relaxed and natural hair can su ffer from breakage if not properly cared and maintained.

MYTH 2: Natural Hair Care is Cheaper To Maintain Than Relaxed Hair.

Hair care can get expensive! Period. Regardless of whether you are purchasing natural hair care products or products for relaxed hair, the same effort is required. And that bill can get pricey.

MYTH 3: Black Hair is Hard to Manage.

As with anything, knowledge is power. Once you learn the dynamics of your particular hair type and what products and styles promote healthy hair growth, it becomes easier.

MYTH 5: Grease Is the Best Moisturizer For My Scalp.

False! The best moisturizer for black hair is actually water. Most

grease products are made up of artificial ingredients such as petroleum and mineral oils which may clog your scalp. Water based moisturizers are great for the penetration of black hair and natural oils such as coconut oil and shea butter are great for sealing in moisture.

MYTH 6: Black Hair Grows Slow or Not At All.

“People assume that because my hair is kinky rather than curly or coily, it doesn’t grow.” Fact: Black Hair grows an average of 1 ⁄ 2 an inch every month or 6-inches a year like every other race. There is no genetic di fference which makes one type grow faster. It all comes down to proper hair care and maintenance.

MYTH 7: Natural Hair Means You Are Making a Political

Statement or You’re a Feminist.

Nope! I just can’t be bothered with relaxers anymore.

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ANGELIESPENCER@ME.COM I. 876-805-5427 INTERIOR I WALLPAPER I UPHOLSTERY

BossMom Builds

The 2022 staging of The BossMom Network’s Mother’s Day activities saw another philanthropic project, this year under the theme ‘BossMom Builds’. Launched in 2020, the BossMom Network is a community of mothers-inbusiness, building viable businesses, raising children and fostering successful relationships. The platform exists to help BossMoms effectively and e ciently balance family and career through information, products, ideas, advice, tools and services.

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For the past two years since 2020, the BossMom Network has partnered with corporate Jamaica to gift mothers-inneed with practical and well-needed gifts procured through BossMom donations and corporate sponsorship for Mother’s Day.

The 2022 project comprised a powerful partnership with one of Jamaica's leading philanthropic institutions, Food For The Poor, where volunteer moms from The

“A PLACE SHE IS PROUD TO CALL HOME, A PLACE HER CHILDREN KNOW AS THEIR SAFE SPACE... I CAN'T THINK OF A MORE BEAUTIFUL MOTHER'S DAY GIFT FOR ANY MOM.”
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BossMom Network built houses for three mothers to call home and build a better life for their families.

The BossMom Network and Food for the Poor identified mothers-in-need through the organization’s nearly 40 -year housing procurement project. The recipients of the houses were chosen through the FFTP selection process which requires that applicants demonstrate proof of ownership of the land on which the house will be built. In collaboration with BossMom Michelle Gordon, the entities provided support to mothers who have existing entrepreneurial ventures.

The homes provided were equipped with indoor sanitation, solar-powered lighting, a gas stove, water tank, kitchen sink and cupboard, guttering for water harvesting and more. There is also a loft space for greater sleeping capacity and a mini solar panel to provide basic lighting.

The BossMom Network ‘upped the ante’ with this initiative and handed over to each BossMom-in-need, in addition to a physical structure, furnishings, including beds, mattresses and bedding, small appliances, groceries, amenities and other accessories included. “For each recipient the gift of a new home is more than the structure...it’s a place of safety… it’s a place of comfort… it brings peace... it brings love... it brings hope!”, shares Marsha Burrell-Reid, Development & Marketing Manager at Food for the Poor.

“BossMom Builds 2022 improved for these mothers, their capacity to live up to their potential, and to feel more confident about the future of their families, and also that of their businesses,” shared Gordon.

Since inception, Food for the Poor has built and donated more than 36,000 homes island-wide, with 36 0 homes built in 2020.

Build-out teams for this Mother’s Day initiative included volunteer ‘BossMoms’ Interior Designer Angelie Spencer, Transport Consultant Selena MohammedWilson, PR and Marketing maven DebbieAnn White, and The Children’s Advocate of Jamaica and the National Rapporteur on Tra cking in Persons, Diahann GordonHarrison. “Good corporate citizens have a heart for social issues, especially where these intersect with positively impacting the most vulnerable of our society. Our children and mothers-in-need fall squarely in that bracket, and it's extra special when moms-in-business can give back to moms

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who are not as secure as they are and have a great need,” shares Mrs. Gordon-Harrison.

“This collaboration for Mother’s Day 2022 with Food for the Poor - BossMom Builds - has been our most ambitious project todate, shares B3BossMom and project lead, Michelle Gordon. “A place she is proud to call home, a place her children know as their safe space... I can't think of a more beautiful Mother's Day gift for any Mom.”

The build-out and furnishing of the three homes is being made possible by corporate sponsorships and private donations of financial and practical support provided by URGE Foundation, Tu ff Gong Worldwide, First Rock Foundation, Sagicor Foundation, The O ce of the Children’s Advocate, Three:23 Projects, Half Moon, Nestle, Narcisse Holdings, KFC, Ford, Value Gas, Grace Kennedy Foods, Proven, MDS Limited, Home by MDS, Athena Care Medical, Jambisco Holiday Snacks, Soldanza, Grape WATA, Joseph’s, WATA, Payless Shoe Source, Commercial Concepts, Ideas From Us, Therapedic, Woman’s Touch Sanitary Napkins, Ideas From Us, Altamont Court Hotel

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When Mommy Needs a Sick Day

“Ah excuse me Sir, I am going to have to take a sick day tomorrow…”

This excerpt from the most recent NyQuil advertisement makes me laugh out loud every single time. If only I could look at my children and say “Uhmmm… I won’t be in today; I am sick.”

Anyone with children knows that there is never a down day when children are involved. Quite frankly it

is not in our job description to ever, ever get sick. I have a few Mummy friends who, with the raging fever of Dengue or the swollen limbs, aches, pains and nausea of Chikungunya, jumped into their cars and dropped off their children to school and back. I wanted to give them a medal.

Over the years I have had my fair share of illness. Some minor and some which literally felt like I was hit in the head with a hammer while walking into a bus. This year alone was horrid. My dog bit my hand while I

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was trying to free him from being entangled in a gate. Yes I still have the do. It wasn’t his fault, he was hurting, but my hand was useless to me for months after. Then I got the dreaded Chikungunya. Oh my goodness this virus is no fun to have. And even less

fun if you have it and have to care for a household of sick, achy people.

What do you do if you are too sick to lift your head or in my case a hand and really could do with a sick day or two?

ASK FOR HELP

Mummies always feel that they have to do it themselves. But we all have to remember that if needed, grandparents, husbands, partners, even your best girlfriends, would be willing to step in if you ask. And if you are lucky they will step in without you having to ask. I am fortunate; I do have a great support network so when I am really

sick I just need to wait for my housekeeper who then takes over from my husband. My friend with Dengue fever though wasn’t so lucky; her husband was off the island as we say, and that is when the best girlfriends came in, offering pick-ups and drop-off s for her son. They even brought soup.

TELEVISION IS YOUR FRIEND

Television becomes my friend when I am sick. All of a sudden my ban on television is lifted and I am a big fan of Disney and Nick. While the television keeps them occupied I can take a nap while I wait for the flu pills to work. I also always have a stack of paper and crayons available for those times when they just need mummy time and could join me on the bed.

WE DO SO MUCH FOR OUR CHILDREN THAT WE FORGET THAT THEY ARE CAPABLE OF MANY THINGS.

DON’T FIGHT THE FAST FOOD.

Home-cooked meals are temporarily replaced by fast food. If I dared to be sick on a day or days that our housekeeper has off, that’s always a viable option. When Daddy is in charge it means ice cream and cake and maybe some fried or jerked chicken. The thing to remember is that at least they are being fed.

Accept that your kiddies can help themselves, and you!

My little girls who call me to help with every little thing on this earth, almost always forget my name ‘Mummy’ when I am sick. It was while I was down with a really wicked flu, and I was using the wall to prop myself up, that I taught my oldest daughter to make her own Milo using the microwave.

We do so much for our children that we forget that they are capable of many things. I think it was during another sickness that they figured out how to dress themselves. Going back to the dog bite, I discovered that the same daughter could make a mean cup of tea. She knows that I have a cup everyday at 4pm and she made me one. My heart overflowed.

The thing to always remember is that it is okay to be sick sometimes and it is also okay to relax, rest and get better. Your children understand a healthy Mummy makes their life happier.

Gayle Cunningham is a Trini-girl living in Jamaica just trying to keep sane with twin girls and their brother and sister. Enjoy her blog at kidfriendlyja.wordpress.com
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Photography: Dwayne Watkins for TeamDWP

Story: Michelle Gordon

Styling: BrandED by Norma Williams

Hair Stylist: Zelpha “Aunty D” Peynado

Makeup: O'neil Baugh

When your relationship with your child inspires an invitation to speak at one the world’s most recognized motivational presenter platforms, you can probably deduce that you’re doing something right.

TOTALLY Terri-Karelle

magine a world where we encourage children to have a healthy understanding of and relationship with their own bodies, rather than treat them like taboos. Imagine a world where we taught our children to exercise empathy, to value not only their emotions, but the feelings, perspectives, realities and needs of others. Imagine a world where we teach our children to create boundaries, respect other people’s boundaries, and exercise their right to say no without guilt or fear.”

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“I
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“AS PARENTS, WE HAVE A CHOICE. WE CAN EITHER PERPETUATE CYCLES THAT CAN POTENTIALLY HARM GENERATIONS, OR WE CAN CHOOSE TO HAVE HEALTHY, HOLISTIC CONVERSATIONS THAT SERVE AS VALUABLE INSIGHT TO EMPOWER OUR CHILDREN.”

-year-old NaimaKourtnae sat in the audience at the October 2021 staging of TedX Talks in Birmingham, England, and watched her mother deliver a speech that called parents to action. In 20 short minutes, Terri-Karelle told the world that a total commitment to a new way of communicating with the next generation, is what we need to transform parenting and ultimately, the dynamics of relationships all around us.

The chip doesn’t fall far from the proverbial block, and Nai-K as she is a ffectionately known, is a testament to that old adage. “My Mummy is the first Jamaican female in history to do a TedX Talk in Birmingham, UK. I am really proud of her. She has done her best. When I saw her on stage, I felt like anything she could accomplish, anybody else could accomplish as well. I hope that someday she’ll be able to do it again and I can be onstage with her.”

To say that they are one of Jamaica’s favourite mother-daughter duos is an understatement, with a relationship that remains unfiltered, honest and perfectly imperfect.

When Terri-Karelle stood on the world stage at TedX, it was no di fferent than any other day when she stands before her virtual audience allowing several hundred thousand people into her life each day. Her messages remain a challenge to parents everywhere to unlearn the habits of generations past, that were steeped in biases of gender, race, status and circumstance. When Terri-Karelle opened the proverbial lens of her life more than 6 years ago, she knew that sharing her journey would certainly influence her daughter, but she probably didn’t know that she would impact her entire nation.

“As parents, we have a choice. We can either perpetuate cycles that can potentially harm generations, or we can choose to have healthy, holistic conversations that serve as valuable insight to empower our children.” Terri-Karelle began having what many would term as ‘uncomfortable’ conversations with her daughter when Nai-K was only 3-years-old. The quickwitted young lady giggles with authentic childlike innocence when she recalls one of her favourite parts of seeing her mom

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on the TedX stage. Their conversation about tampon vs. ‘tampin’ had gone viral on social media - like many others that they’ve had, but to little Naima-Kourtnae, these are normal moments with her Mummy where no question is wrong and no answers are withheld.

“Creating a safe space for your child to share her most intimate feelings where she can ask any and everything, with the promise that you will be open and honest, regardless of how weird the topic might be… no judgement, no shame.” While some parents often struggle with drawing and maintaining the line between friendship and parenting with their child(ren), Terri-Karelle de-complicates the process with simple and open communication. “Though you are the adult and have more experience than them in some things, you have to allow yourself to learn from them, even as they learn from you.”

But this is not where it started.

Terri-Karelle’s pregnancy was not the amazing experience purported by so many new expecting mothers. She recounts that for the first few months, while doing the necessary doctors’ visits, she grappled and processed the task ahead. “I was devastated. I was not ready – mentally, emotionally, psychologically. I had just signed on for Digicel Rising Stars and wondered what the process (of pregnancy) was going to be like for me. The idea of raising a child seemed daunting and I wasn’t sure I was prepared.” It wasn’t until her third trimester where she felt more comfortable with the idea and decided to parent her way.

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Like Terri, the prospect of parenting can be a daunting task for many. The idea of not only bringing life into this world, but raising a well-rounded, grounded, kind, independent, caring little person can seem like a mammoth challenge, especially if you are self-aware and cognizant of your own imperfections. Pregnancy and parenting bring with it daily questions of how, what, and why - and often those are just the conversations with yourself. The generally joyous decision to become a parent can sometimes be filled with fear and anxiety, as parents traverse the seemingly unknown.

This was going to be a life changing decision, for which she recognizes no one is ever fully ready. To tap into her own potential as a parent, Terri- Karelle would have to be the parent that Naima-Kourtnae needed her to be, which meant unlearning already ingrained conditioning, and relearning the woman she had become. Realizing early that she had an incredible responsibility ahead of her, she decided to parent her own way - naturally and totally Terri-Karelle - infused with her version of crazy, off-the-wall impulsiveness and a deep and authentic passion.

Ultimately, there is no ‘o cial’ manual to guide everyday decisions and experiences that come with parenting a child. TerriKarelle believes that persons should parent intentionally, by underscoring the values they believe are important in navigating the world we live in today. “I am raising my daughter in Jamaica, in the Caribbean, for the world,” which for Terri-Karelle means that her foundation must include a broader vision for what her tomorrow will be. “Raising a global child means he or she must be multi-faceted. As parents, we should be raising children who are empathetic and compassionate thought leaders … not only academics.”

Nine years a parent, Terri-Karelle shares that her parenting style focuses on discovering and nurturing, NaimaKourtnae’s talents, as opposed to general societal skills that focus on academics or sports. Life gets busy, particularly as children get older and their lives become

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MY MUMMY IS THE MOST EXCELLENT WOMAN IN THE ENTIRE WORLD TO ME. SHE IS MY FAVOURITE PERSON. I’M A LITTLE JEALOUS OF HOW SUCCESSFUL SHE IS AND I HOPE THAT I CAN BE THE SECOND VERSION OF HER WHEN I GROW UP.”
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“OUR CHILDREN’S DEVELOPMENT AND WORLD VIEW RELY LARGELY ON US AS PARENTS. THE CONVERSATIONS THAT WE HAVE WITH THEM AND THE EXAMPLES THAT WE SET WILL BE THEIR FOUNDATION, WHETHER WE LIKE IT OR NOT.”

consumed with their own activities and experiences. Looking for ways to remain connected with your children, finding opportunities to have one-on-one time with them, seeking times each day to laugh, play and talk even if it is just for a few minutes, is part of the parenting technique Terri-Karelle has used and mastered in curating her relationship with Naima-Kourtnae.

One of the best ways to demonstrate love to a child is to simply pay attention and listen to them. As simple as this may seem, the concept requires deliberate use of our time as parents, to be intentional in giving our attention and quieting distractions, creating a safe space for our child(ren) to be open. It also requires consistency in connecting with our child(ren). Intentionality in parenting creates opportunities for parents to be present with our children at the stage and place they are on their developmental journey.

It was Oprah Winfrey who once said “I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is.” For Terri-Karelle, it’s a choice that comes with tremendous responsibility and equally tremendous rewards. Some things you take from others, some you take from the experience. And Terri-Karelle is taking notes every chance she gets and in return she is writing a legacy of her own from which others can learn, grow and empower their own children. Nai-K chimes in again with a reminder. “My Mummy is the most excellent woman in the entire world to me. She is my favourite person. I’m a little jealous of how successful she is and I hope that I can be the second version of her when I grow up.”

“Our children’s development and world view rely largely on us as parents. The conversations that we have with them and the examples that we set will be their foundation, whether we like it or not. We are their anchors and their points of reference.” Terri-Karelle believes it, preaches it and lives it. Totally.

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Kidspiration

Solae and Sahai Panton

After meeting Solae and Sahai Panton, I’ve decided that a more stylish pairs of sisters has yet to emerge. They are 8 and 9 years old, so how is it possible for them to even know style, you ask? Well, the chips don’t fall far from the block, and further reiterating one of my fundamental beliefs that children live what they learn. Their mother Aiesha is an artiste who sees life through style-infused lens.

“My girls are true thinkers who don’t depend on outside opinions to form theirs. They take their cues from the little things and the big things around them and filter them with a unique mix of brighteyed optimism and unadulterated genius of a child. I love that about them. They are among my greatest teachers!”

Solae and Sahai are a dynamic duo clearly demonstrating that artistic expression not just an act, but a way of life. They have been styling their dolls and themselves with pieces from their mother’s wardrobe since they were 2 and 3. Now even before they enter double digits Solae and Sahai are ready to launch SolSai, their first clothing line. Their collection #hashtag hits the runway with whimsical and edgy clothing for the rocker in every kid!

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Raina Vaz

8-year-old Raina Vaz, the creative force behind Diva Designs by Raina always knew she had a passion for ‘anything fashion’. From make-up to wardrobe and styling, she never missed the opportunity to give her friends and family styling tips. But there is a root; Raina’s grandmother was once a belle in Jamaica’s fashion industry. If you’ve ever heard of Soni Vaz, then you would know one of the sources of Raina’s artistic and entrepreneurial influence. With her degree in hand from New York’s established Fashion Institute of Technology, Sonia Vaz built an empire on beautiful Jamaican swimwear and was even featured in a Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue. So with her collection Diva Designs by Raina, Raina is ready to show Caribbean children just how stylish they can be for any occasion!

Island Child Style is gearing up to fill a longstanding gap in the children’s fashion industry by hosting this event designed specifically for kids. With several fashion designers launching their children’s collections on the runway, Island Child Style will revolutionize the way we see fashion. Embarking on the journey of the very first children’s runway event, Island Child Style takes kid designers Solae and Sahai Panton

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Sporting Kids

Every now and again a sporting genius comes along that the world simply cannot get enough of. Usain Bolt, Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce, Chri s Gayle are just a few of the sporting kids that have become the geniuses of today.

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But there’s a back-story to the gold mine that Jamaica and other places have managed to churn out over the years.

Those hair-raising moments didn’t just happen by chance. They are often the result of a lot of hard work, discipline, dedication, sacrifice, and, yes…pain. You could say it’s a serious balancing act.

A sport that is fast rising in popularity following island girl Toni-Ann Williams’ appearance at last year’s Olympics, B3 Magazine found a hive of emerging

sporting geniuses among the talented pool of gymnasts at Nishida’s Gymnastics in Kingston. These little stars are the surest indication of what Jamaica and the world are soon to discover.

One of the bright sparks who got our attention more than a year ago is the 12-year-old dynamo Danyella Holmes.

A Level 8 gymnast, Danyella, who left Nishida’s a year ago to take up a scholarship in Virgina is described as having “amazing” work ethic by her US coaches. “Danyella is a talented young lady that displays

perseverance, commitment, determination, and passion for the sport of gymnastics”, qualities coach Macey Watson says make a successful gymnast.

The talented gymnast copped a bronze medal at the recent USA Gymnastics (USAG) Virginia State Championships for her “impressive” floor routine. An Olympic hopeful for Tokyo, Japan 2020, Watson feels young Danyella’s “chances of making the Games are good” and “if she qualifies, she will represent her home country of Jamaica well”.

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Mikala Virgo

Like many of the gymnasts she left back home, Danyella started gymnastics from a tender age. The earlier the start, the better says Nishida’s Gymnastics coach, Nicholas Tai, as it is the perfect time to condition their little bodies.

Eleven years old and barely looking like it, Brianne Woon is special!

Another Level 8 gymnast, with two levels to go before she o cially enters the elite category, Brianne has won numerous awards both for her club, Nishida, and her country. She walked away with a third place all-round finish at the USAG tournament in Orlando, Florida in January, this after an excellent showing in Baltimore that same month. Brianne is a beauty on the bars! Like several of the gymnasts, the bars are her favourite routine as she gets to “swing on them”, Disciplined, poised and businesslike in her approach to her craft, Brianne transforms when she gets into action. “I’m always doing hand stands and cart wheel, and I do back tuck, which is like a back flip,” the agile youngster told B3 Magazine as her busy little body sprang into a combination of routine during our interview.

Following in Brianne’s footsteps are cousins, Kailey Ho, aged 10, and eight-yearold Sydney Chung (known as ‘Ling Ling’ and ‘Shing Shing’ to their coaches. Her small hands pressed up against smiling cheeks in a peek-a-boolike gesture, the bright and pleasant Kailey sounded a warning to her opponents for the Barbados tour for which she was about to set off at the end of April.

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Danyella Richards

“I plan to take home all the medals!” said a confident Kailey.

But even at their tender age these little sporting stars sacrifice a lot.

School and social events often take a back seat due to the gruelling schedule, explains Danyella’s mom, Haedi-Kaye Holmes. Yet, Danyella maintains her honour role status at Virginia Academy in what is a serious balancing act.

“Sometimes we get so much work we’re tired when we get home,” 12 year-old Level 5 gymnast, Asasia Malcolm, said. Her friend Jamila ‘Apple’ Du ff us’, also 12, agrees.

Still, the two are adamant they’ll wear the Jamaican colours at the 2024 Olympics.

On average, these gymnasts train around 25 hours weekly – for four to five hours, up to five days a week.

“Hardworking and dedicated”, much is expected from India Shirley, or ‘Ten Brain’ as coach Shenice Martin likes to call her for her smarts. But for now, the focus is on getting the 12 year-old to complete the USAG levels. “After that, she moves up, so let’s say, give her another five years and you’ll see great things from her,” coach Martin promised.

A shy but fierce competitor, 10 year yearold Adana Johnson has come a long way from the five-year old coaches say they met when she first started at Nishida’s. Adana has su ffered some nasty injuries in the past including rips (literally tearing) to the palm of her small hands from doing the gritty bar routine. But the fierce competitor has bounced back so nicely coach Martin says she now is not only physically, but mentally stronger and tougher.

Coach Tai, who has been a gymnast since he was five and is now a World Championship competitor, said the sport

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Adana Johnson

provides some of the greatest lessons in discipline and confidence and that the falls and injuries are only part of those lessons.

Nishida Gymnastics is home to approximately 70 children and adult gymnasts, all of whom must complete a mandatory recreation routine before taking on the USAG training programme.

Title holders of the 2015 Florida Crown Championship and winners of numerous individual and team awards, this tightknit unit and its crop of sporting kids are definitely ones to watch!

Breanne Woon
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India Shirley

Swimsuit Black and white stripes are great illusionists! Go with vertical or horizontal lines depending on your body type bearing in mind that horizontal stripes are great if you are tall and thin, and vertical stripes work well to elongate your torso. Take your style quotient up a notch and get your swimsuit custommade; with all your curves and edges in mind.; Try Sol by drennaLUNA, you’ll be glad you did. www.drennaluna.com

‘Black’ to Beach Basics

It’s almost summertime. And for so many Caribbean Moms, that means it’s time for lazy days, happy children and inevitably, happy Moms. It also means its beach time. No matter where in the Caribbean we’re from, we’re never too far away from the ocean.

There’s just nothing basic about black. Black and white for that matter, is timeless. Black and white is classic, elegant and sophisticated and best of all, it goes with whatever colour is trending. Let’s just say that it is safe to add black and white to your wardrobe, anytime of year. Remember, colour trends will pass, but black and white lives on from season to season and

With this bold look, we guarantee that the sun won’t be the only hot thing

Sunshades Sunshades are essential to keep those UVA and B rays at bay. Do it with style and channel your inner ‘Jackie-O’ with broad-faced shades. www.prada.com

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Broad-Rimmed Hat

Bolster your sun protection by wearing a beautiful broadrimmed hat. Ensure the brim is wide enough to fend off the rays hitting not just your face, but your shoulders and back as well. Get yours made just for you at Cinderella Hats in Jamaica. www.cindrellahats.com

Beach Bag

Your beach bag doesn’t have to scream “I’m a bag that goes to the beach.” Instead, let it scream “I’m the bag that goes wherever you go…in fine style.”

Flip Flops

Easy beachwear is important to the simplicity of your day at the beach. Keep your feet cool (literally), when you flip in and out of these slippers –comfy and www.havaianas.com

Towel Balls of lint belong on your lint brush, not on your towel! Invest in a good towel specifically designed for the beach with woven cotton on one side and terry on the other. Each side has it’s purpose – one for your body and one for the beach. Nothing more annoying than trying to dry yourself with the sandy side!
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2 Cool School

There are backpacks, and there are BACKPACKS! We tested several brands of 'backto-school' gear and these topped our list as the most attractive and durable of the pack. Send your kids back to school in fine style with these great selections from the following brands.

Blok by Mad Pax The Blok is the newest kid on the Madpax block . It’s time to rock the BLOK. They broke the mold on this one; so get off the grid and cast a spell with BLOK, the latest formula of funk from your friends at MadPax. Might y towers of power and punch meet squares of rare madpax.com $60 134 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022

Spiketus Rex Full Pack by MadPax

The fullpack is the mack daddy of all the MadPax built for kids on the go. Store your books or guar d your gear with a style that says you are one-of-a-kind. A stand out series for those who want to stick out from the crowd. High schoolers to mini rollers, all are welcome. madpax.com $60

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Pocchari by Dante Beatrix

These insulated lunch boxes are a playful way to keep food fresh until lunch time. Made with heavy-duty nylon and machine washable for kid-proof durability and easy cleaning. The back has a name tag and a zipped pocket. Tested PVC Free, phthalate free, lead free & BPA free. beatrixny.com $34

Rory by Dante Beatrix

Embroidered with beloved forest creatures, these sturdy little packs hold everything a child needs for a busy day. Constructed from durable nylon and easy-to-clean laminated canvas. The large interior contains a smaller zipped pocket. Padded back panel and padded shoulder straps. Designed for ages 2 to 5, and 5 to 10. PVC free, lead free, phthalate free & BPA free beatrixny.com

Zoo Packs Little Kid Backpacks by Skip Hop

The Zoo Pack is the little kid backpack where “fun meets function!” Whimsical details and durable materials make this the perfect on-the-go pack for kids on-the-go! skiphop.com

Backpack $20

Water Bottle $6

Little Kid $52 Big Kid $42
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Sun-Kissed

It’s true. The popular social media hash tag rings true for so many of us; we really do live where others vacation! Beautiful beaches are either in our back yard, close to our backyard, or close to the back yard of someone we know well. Our beaches are what make us here in the Caribbean, one of the world’s most visited vacation destinations in the world.

Summer is the time of year when visits to the beach increase, hotels along the coast enjoy full capacity, parents look forward to a break from the monotony and stress of the just-concluded school term. And the children? Well, 2 months away from school for the children is simply heaven. This is the time for late mornings, lazy afternoons and …

Sun-Kissed Beach Days

Photography: Shot on location: Beaches Resorts, Ocho Rios Swimsuits: Polkadots Jamaica

There’s no better time than the holidays to get your children to fall in love with the outdoors. Turn off the electronics and let’s plug into the sun! You probably don’t need an expert to tell you all the benefits of outdoor play for children. (…and grown ups too, but that’s another story.)

Your perfect day for anything, whether at the beach or not, requires proper planning. Whether you’re hanging out in your backyard or at the beach, before you pack your picnic bag or beach bag, let’s take a look at some of the things that’ll make your days in the sun, fun and stress-free. So as Julie Andrews once sang, “Let’s start at the very beginning”!

SUMMER SCHOOL FOR SUNSCREEN

So much emphasis is placed on protecting our skin, and all with good reason. With each passing year, we learn more and more about how the sun a ffects our lives. We know all the good and while we don’t yet know all of the bad, we do know enough to know that protection from harmful rays is imperative. A myriad of skin care products line retail shelves telling us about this factor and that factor. But what does it all really mean? Here’s a quick lesson.

WHAT ARE SPF AND UVA?

SPF stands for Sunburn Protection Factor. It measures protection against only ultraviolet radiation B and UVB, the rays that can cause burns. But the SPF level doesn't measure protection against ultraviolet radiation A and UVA, which causes aging of the skin. However, both types of UV rays can lead to cancer, so look for sunscreens that protect against both UVA and UVB rays.

WHAT DO THE NUMBERS MEAN?

The SPF testing system uses a number to represent the amount of protection that is provided. An SPF15 sunscreen would provide 15 times the protection of no sunscreen. In other words, it will be 15 times longer before you start to burn. The higher the number, the greater the protection level. Studies have shown that it may not be necessary to go higher than SPF50, but users should simply re-apply sunscreen as needed.

WHAT DOES ALL-DAY PROTECTION MEAN?

Not much. Sunscreen needs to be reapplied frequently in order to provide optimal protection. This is especially true for children who are actively in and out of the water, or running around and perspiring a lot. Reapply to areas where the solution has worn off

Beaches come in all shapes and sizes. There are sandy beaches with shallow water, deep with crystal clear waters, and some a bit rocky and filled with seaweed. Others are lined with palm trees, almond trees, sea grape branches, or carved out with beach recliners and thatched huts. There are black sand, white sand and pink sand beaches. Inevitably they become someone's haven for a few hours, and for some lucky folks, those sandy shores become the perfect refuge for an entire day.

SAFETY FIRST

It’s every parent’s pride and joy to see their little one free from all floating devices, and swimming like fish. But the journey to that point, and even beyond that, needs to be carefully navigated. ALWAYS keep a close eye on your child, even if they can swim. If your child is a nonswimmer using armbands or other floatation devices, you (or another responsible adult) should be nearby. Don’t become complacent just because they’re wearing

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safety gear. Accidents happen, and that’s the last thing we’d want to have happen. It’s a good idea to discuss with your family all the rules for the day, and ensure that your children know that they’re not allowed to enter the water without your knowledge. Give rules to your bigger children even though they can swim. If they’re old enough to go off on their own, be sure to give time limits for them to ‘check in’ with you ever so often.

PACK ‘N’ PLAY

You don’t want to be at the beach, need something, and realize that it’s still in the cupboard at home. Pack your beach bag well in advance of your trip. My advice? The younger your child, the earlier you should start packing. As your kids get older, you’ll find that experience teaches you that you really don’t need the kitchen sink at the beach! But until such time, you pack what you think you’ll need.

Beach basics will always include your towels (pack extra just in case), beach mats to lie on, toys and sunscreen. But consider the eventualities that may occur and prepare yourself with a bottle (or other container) with fresh (as in salt-free) water for washing out the sand that inevitably gets caught in someone’s eyes. Wipes are always good to have on hand for anyone with children, and hand sanitizer isn’t a bad idea either. Be sure to pack plastic bags to place your wet garments (and garbage) in, of course, a change of clothes is a must.

BEAUTY & THE BEACH

For sunscreen to work effectively, it needs time to ‘soak’ into the skin. Apply sunscreen to all exposed areas on your child’s skin before you leave home, and be sure to re-apply each time they’re out of the water. Sunblock will wash off over time losing its effectiveness. Try getting to the beach early, before the sun comes out in full force usually between 12 noon and 2pm. This is the perfect time to enjoy a lunch break – out of the sun!

When buying swimsuits, look for the ones that offer maximum UV protection. If not, at least try to cover up with a t-shirt. If you arrive at the beach early enough, you’ll probably be lucky enough to set up your ‘beach base’ under a shady tree. Failing that, you can set up ‘shop’ under a large umbrella. Bear in mind that even though you may be in the shade, you’re still being exposed to the sun. Wear your sunshades, and if your children will keep them in place, encourage them to wear shades as well. Drink lots of water throughout the day at the beach.

RISKY BUSINESS

Well-known fact: children's skin burn faster than adult’s. Once our children are being exposed to the sun, there is an increase in the risk of developing melanoma. Melanoma is a type of skin cancer that research has related to ultraviolet (UV) sun exposure. Instances may be low, and though most cases do not present themselves until adulthood, childhood melanoma does exist. It’s better to be safe, than sorry, right?

The importance of inspecting your child’s body is crucial. The disease begins at the epidermis level, preventing the production of melanin, and ultimately damaging surrounding tissue. Very often, the damaged tissue presents itself as moles. Look for any growths

“YOU DON’T WANT TO BE AT THE BEACH, NEED SOMETHING, AND REALIZE THAT IT’S STILL IN THE CUPBOARD AT HOME.
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or moles, whether flat or raised, and visit your child’s paediatrician immediately if you find anything unusual. Like many diseases, if melanoma is detected early, it can be cured. We know that people with darker skin have cells that naturally produce a lot of melanin, while fair-skinned people produce much less. Though this is true, it is commonly misunderstood, and should not be taken as a license for dark-skinned people to ignore the use of protection.

DE-BUNKING THE MYTHS

We live in the Caribbean so we’re used to the sun. Being accustomed to the sun doesn’t make it any less harmful; it simply increases your exposure. So take all the necessary precautions as you would if this were your first time!

I’m dark-skinned; the sun doesn’t affect me as much. Darker skin takes longer to react, but exposed to the same UV rays, the dangers are the same.

My kids are wearing sunscreen, so they’re fully protected.

They’re protected, but not fully. Remember to re-apply as needed, and make use of shaded trees and umbrellas as much as possible. Wear sunscreen-infused clothing when possible.

The evening sun is not as dangerous as the

afternoon sun.

Though the sun’s rays are less potent at 5pm than they are at 1pm, it doesn’t mean there is no exposure at that time. Use the same precautions, and enjoy the fact that it’s a lot cooler at that time.

Using sunscreen will block the vitamin D my child needs.

Our bodies produce vitamin D with lots of help from the sun. Using sunscreen does not prevent exposure to the sun; it simply minimizes the effects of its harmful rays. Children who are healthy and active tend to get su cient vitamin D through regular day-today activities.

ROYAL DREAMS

What’s a trip to the beach without sandcastle construction? Every moat built and every fortress erected is all a part of your child’s master plan to create a structure that they already have in their mind’s eye. Maybe they’ve been inspired by a show on television, or perhaps a story in a book, but your child is trying to bring to life something that he or she has seen before. Be sure to equip your child with the right tools. The lessons to be learned from the simple act of building a sandcastle will last long after the sun sets. A spade and a bucket at the beach have the potential to inspire both a creative mind and constructive hands.

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FOOD FOR THOUGHT

Your children will be playing in the sea and on the sand. Chances are, the sun will be hot and you’ll be guaranteed at least two things; one, they’ll have fun, and two; they’re going to get hungry and thirsty. If you’re enjoying the facilities at one of the Caribbean’s amazing all-inclusive resorts, you have nothing to worry about when it comes to keeping your children’s hearts happy and their tummies full. But if you are just doing a day visit to the beach, consider how long you’ll stay at the beach, pack snacks that are easy to munch on, and make sure you have lots of water to drink. Many beaches in the Caribbean provide, or have access to great dining options. From fish and festival, to shark and bake to burgers and fresh fruit, good food to eat is never really far away.

POOL COOL

If you and your kids opt for the pool instead of the beach, that’s cool too – get it? All the safety rules apply here just the same. You should be aware however, that all the sanitizing benefits of the natural ocean are compensated for in the pool by chemicals, which can cause red eyes and also trigger allergic reactions. Other pool disinfectants are used such as ozone or silver-cooper, but though not as harsh as chlorine, they are still chemicals. So just to be safe, always wash off after coming out of the pool, and be sure to take breaks. You may face opposition on breaks from the pool, but use

this opportunity to squeeze in some well-needed hydration or food top-up.

BACKYARD BEACHTIME

If you can’t get out to the beach or the pool, take advantage of the hot sunshiny days, and improvise. Make lunchtime fun for your children by setting up a garden picnic. Have them put on their swimsuits and tell them to pretend! Be age appropriate of course; your 7-year-old may think you’ve lost your marbles at the suggestion, but to your 3-year-old, you’re a genius! When they’ve had enough to eat, reel out the hose, and spray away.

So, take a look at your summer calendar and plan your beach days. Keep your camera charged and ready, whether you’ll be enjoying the facilities at a resort, or taking advantage of your local beach for a day trip; make it a date with your children! Try not to go to the beach as the only grown up with more than one child. Having other adults around can give you a stronger sense of security with the children, and it’s also great for you to have adult company. That way, you can discuss something other than Pocoyo and Peppa Pig! You’ll have a good day, and so will your children. You’ll also score high up on the fun activities chart, and come back-to-school September, [if you’re lucky] your beach trips may well be the subject of the obligatory story “Fun Things I Did This Summer”.

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Things BOYS Need From Their Moms

Children need many things from their parents. They need stability, protection, nurturing, and love. They also need other things, different things, from each of their parents. I have seen several such lists, and I wanted to add my opinion to the mix.

Because I am a mommy to a little boy, this is what I know. So, here’s the list of things I pray I give to my little guy, in order to help him grow into a good man – the things I think every little boy needs from his mom.

To Be Showered With A ffection - hugs, kisses, all of it, until he is big enough to not want that anymore. Then he needs you to ru e his hair, put your hand on his shoulder, and hug him anyway. He needs to know the importance of human contact so that he doesn’t keep it from his wife or children.

To Dance – in the car, in the living room, in the front yard. Slow dance, crazy dance, any kind of dancing the song calls for, even if there’s no song at all. He will learn that life has a soundtrack. That there is no moment too small to celebrate, and the big ones….. they almost always call for dancing.

To Be Told Secrets – and let him tell them to you. Big or small. Doesn’t matter what they are. He needs to know that he can always talk to you, about anything. And besides, secrets are fun!

For You To Marry The Kind Of Man You Want

Him To Be – because he will . His views of marriage are shaped by what he sees from you. He will model

himself after the men in his life: the kind of husband he is, the kind of father he is, the kind of man he is. You can’t illustrate that to him, so find someone who will.

To See His Mom Respect His Father – show him every day what respect looks like. Show him the way a wife should treat her husband. If you’re not married to his father, show him the way to co-parent peacefully, with respect. He needs a woman who will respect him. Show him what to look for.

To Learn The Kinds Of Things That Women

Need – tell him your favorite flower and let him “buy” them for you. Let him take you out to dinner. Let him know that girls like jewelry, and shoes. Let him open doors and hold your hand. Show him what a gentleman looks like.

To Appreciate Beauty, Real Beauty – don’t put yourself down in front of him. He will learn to see you like you see you. He will, at some point, think you are the most beautiful woman in the world. Let him.

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Don’t tell him he’s wrong. Let him watch you do your nails, your hair, and your make-up. It won’t make him less “manly”, but it will help him understand that women need to feel beautiful. Hopefully, he’ll spend the rest of his life appreciating the lengths we go to in order to attain that beauty.

Discipline – don’t just let his father do it. He needs to respect that you are a figure of authority also. He needs to know that your voice carries just as much weight. He needs to understand what co-parenting looks like; he’ll do it himself someday.

To Respect – he will treat his wife the way he was allowed to treat you. He will treat every woman the way he was allowed to treat you. Show him that the correct way to speak to women is with respect and dignity. He’ll thank you for it someday.

To Learn To Say ‘Sir’ And ‘Miss’ - it will take him so far in life. People appreciate this little extra bit of politeness and respect. It can make someone’s day to be made to feel important and appreciated.

Comfort – kiss his boo boo’s, hold him when he needs it. He’ll learn that when it hurts, it’s okay to cry. Eventually your kisses won’t fix everything, but knowing that you want to fix it, that you wish you could heal every one of his broken hearts, it will give him some comfort. It will give him a place to start healing and a spot to launch from when the time comes to get back up.

Responsibility – make him put his own laundry away, take out the trash, and help you do the dishes. Make him earn an allowance to save up for that new guitar, or video game, or baseball equipment. If you don’t, all housework will forever be known as “woman’s work” and nobody wants a man like that. You want him to be the man who will step up and help his wife take care of their home. You want him to learn to take care of the things he has acquired and you want him to know how to work for something he wants.

To Learn His Lesson – even the hard ones. This is one of the hardest parts. As mothers we want to shield our children from the big, bad world. We want to run to them every time we see them start down a path that will lead to no place good. We want to take their

place every time they might get hurt. And sometimes they need that. Sometimes they need shielding and protecting. Sometimes they need mom to swoop in and save the day. And sometimes they don’t. They will be more effective adults if they are given the opportunity to learn that actions have consequences. They will be more effective adults if they learn how to walk away or say no themselves. And they will be more effective adults if they learn how to handle disappointment.

Love, Unconditionally – and make sure he knows it. When he’s being sweet and obedient. And when he’s not. Every time my son is in trouble, after he has served out whatever punishment he has earned and/or we have had the necessary discussions, I always tell him I love him. We always end on a positive. I never want him to doubt my love for him and I want him to understand that there is nothing he could do to make my love for him diminish. It is very important to me that he knows my love for him is unconditional.

To Talk To His Mom About Sex – when he’s old enough and the timing is right. Let his dad talk to him, too, but he needs a woman’s perspective. He needs to know the emotional sides to sex and the ways in which he can damage, or love, a woman with them. He needs to have a place he can ask questions and be honest. He needs more than just the facts and the hormones.

His Mom To Be His Biggest Fan – whether it be on the ball field or at the World Series, his first guitar lesson or a stage, a finger painting or an art gallery masterpiece. Be his biggest fan. The world is full of people just waiting to show him he’s not the best. Let him know, that in your eyes, they will always be wrong.

His Mom To Be Right Next To Him – through everything. Hold his little body when he’s sick and his hand when he’s broken-hearted. Stand next to him, with pride, on his first day of kindergarten and his high school graduation. Help him fix his tie for his first date and his wedding day. Be the first one to him after the birth of his children. Be right next to him... every time.

This article was originally printed on the blog page Marriage, Motherhood, Laughter, Life. Follow the author, Sara Mastin on her blog "Life As I Know It", or email her at butterflywritersm@gmail.com 150 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022

STYLING YOUR GIRLS

IStyling by: Arlene L. Martin for drennaLUNA.com

Photographer: Marc Evans, marcevansimages.com

Make-up: Gillian Zacca

Clothing: OMG! Girls and select pieces from the OMG! boutique

Victoria: Wears a lace OMG! girl top in purple, which is brightened with a neon camisole. Cami and shorts from the OMG! Boutique.

Madyson D: Is oh so cute in tie-side shorts and a poncho-style top.

recently had the pleasure of collaborating on the development of a new clothing label for girls –tweens to be exact – called OMG! girl. The transition from designing for the woman to designing for a tween was not as di fferent as expected. I discovered in the exercise that they are 'little women' – not just girls; that cute, like pink, is out, and they definitely have their own style. And trends are still very important even at that age. So most of the pieces we created still offer the flexibility of styling based on their personal taste – and each if not a trend in itself would facilitate one – like layering. We moved from the fun of creating the collection to the launch of the label to the first photoshoot which was done for this issue of b3. And I think this last activity was most fun. Can you tell?

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Giselle: Also a fan of the trend of lace, Giselle opted for the lace/chiffon racer back top from OMG! girl. Cami and shorts from the OMG! Boutique.

Madysin C: Styles her OMG! girl cowl-back blouse with cami and shorts from the OMG! Boutique.

Nia: Wears an OMG! girl romper. And to pull in the neon trend sports a neon pink purse, and completes her look with glasses.

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Keeping Caribbeanthat Connection

If you live outside of NY, DC, MD, VA, or parts of Canada, it may be hard to keep your kids connected to their Caribbean roots.

I grew up in a Caribbean home in America with both parents from Trinidad and Tobago. I knew as I got older that my home was very di fferent from other kids homes. I eventually found out that many of the words used in my home were not even (what the US would consider) “real” words ! We grew up in the south where, at the time, there was no real Caribbean community.

By the time my son was three, he had been to SOMEBODY’S Carnival every year from Atlanta to DC (his “diaper wine” is still a favorite family story). When we moved to DC, I was determined to get him

connected. Here are a few things that I do as a Caribbean American mom to get and keep my kids connected and aware of their Caribbean heritage.

We support Caribbean restaurants – and take the kids. There is nothing like my cousins roti, buss up, and curry mango, but if we are away from her, we try to take the kids to try di fferent Caribbean Cuisine.

We play Caribbean music in the car and the house, and we all dance. If you are like me and are very careful about what the kids listen to, there are several clean (and even Christian) versions of soca, reggae, and calypso songs. Go on Rhapsody or Pandora, and make a child friendly mix-tape.

We show them where they are from on the map in relation to where they live and tell them their story. Kids love to know their place on the planet, and knowing

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that they are actually tied to more than one place amazes them. Our history as a family in America is short. We tell the kids about how their grandparents ended up here, and where the rest of their family is. It makes them feel like part of something bigger than just us.

We take them to Caribbean events and cheer for Caribbean sports teams!. During Caribbean American Heritage Month, we took them to the Caribbean American Heritage Festival, and to the Film Festival. My youngest said, “Mommy! They all talk like Grandma!”. As a family, ‘soccer’ is our sport of choice, and the kids coach is from Trinidad, so when he is assigned to watch a professional match, we try to find a Caribbean team to root for!

We discuss the history that they share with many other cultures and countries. We talk about how Caribbean people came to America by way of Ellis Island, just like people from other countries. We talk to them about the slave and civil rights history they share with African Americans. We try to keep them connected to all parts of their culture, and show them where they fit in the world. When it comes down to it, that is really what kids want –to know who they are, and where they fit. A field trip to New York is a great opportunity to show your

children the historical impact of the Caribbean immigrant on American society - especially in business, art, and culture.

Eva’s blog Socamom.com is a valuable, entertaining resource for Caribbean Moms, and moms in general. Socamom passes on motherhood knowledge using humor, sympathy, technology, and education. Eva is married, with three children, and celebrates her Trinidadian heritage through her blog.

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B3 Islan’Dad Adam Stewart

Photography: Dwayne Watkins

Shot on location: Montego Bay, Jamaica

Children's Wardrobe: Cradle to Footsteps

He’s the Caribbean’s youngest CEO, overseeing a hospitality and service empire that spans a veritable globe. At 33, he heads 19 resorts in 6 countries, the largest automobile dealer in Jamaica, an appliance sales and service enterprise, and several other private entities. He’s a business powerhouse with a nononsense reputation for discipline and strong work ethos. But to 4-year-old Aston, 2-year-old Sloan and 4-month-old Camden, he’s simply Daddy. Board meetings, conference calls and property purchases mean ‘diddly squat’ in the face of story-time, sand castles and tea parties.

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By Michelle Gordon and Joni Wedderburn
“I’M PROUD TO SAY THAT I HAVE ATTENDED THE BIRTHS OF ALL THREE OF MY CHILDREN. GIVEN THE NATURE OF MY JOB, THAT'S MUCH EASIER SAID THAN DONE!”

tealing Adam Stewart away from work for a few hours was a lot easier than we had imagined. He was only too happy to put his feet up and sit with us for a chat. We’re glad he did.

Were you in the delivery room for your children’s births? If yes, how was that experience for you?

I’m proud to say that I have attended the births of all three of my children. Given the nature of my job, that's much easier said than done! Sloan’s birth proved to be the most exciting. Jill was in London and I was in Montego Bay when her mother called to tell me her

‘waters’ had broken. It was 4 p.m. and there was a flight from Kingston at 6 p.m. – over three hours away by car. Thankfully one of our company planes was on the ground and I was able to scream to Kingston, book a ticket and get to London. I walked through arrivals with my briefcase and the shirt on my back. As it turned out, it was just Jill’s ‘back waters’ and she didn’t give birth until two days later!

Was it easy/ challenging for you and Jill to agree on the names of your children? It was very easy. Jill’s father is British, as is my mother and so, whilst we are both proudly Caribbean, we share a deep love of the United Kingdom. It was unintentional but each of our children’s names is connected in some way to the place.

S
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“I TRY

TO BE AS HANDS-ON

AS I POSSIBLY CAN, AND INVOLVE MYSELF IN WHAT THEY DO”

What activities do you like to do with your children?

I, much like my father, spent my childhood growing up on the water: whether at a beach or on a boat, and our kids are no di fferent. When Jill was pregnant, we purposely spent as much time as possible in and around the ocean and our children enjoy it as much as we do.

I play a lot of football with Aston and both he and Sloan have little scooters which are a lot of fun and I’m not too macho to play with Sloan’s tea set once in a while as well!

How would you describe your parenting style? In what ways is it similar to or different from your own father’s style?

I try to be as hands-on as I possibly can, and involve myself in what they do, and likewise, I try to take them with me when I travel. They love it and we are able to spend time with one another too.

Parenthood between my generation and my father's

is very hard to compare because they’re in two di fferent times. Nowadays, parents are much more hands-on: changing nappies, cleaning up their mess and so on. That wasn’t the case in my father’s time.

What’s the most important lesson you learned from your father?

My dad instilled a sense of principle: the di fference between right and wrong. It is a wonderful foundation on which to raise kids, and one we also try to impart to our children too.

What’s the most important lesson you want to teach your children?

I would dearly love to instill in them the importance of family - of being surrounded by people who love and support them unconditionally whatever it is they want to do in life.

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“WHEN YOU SEE YOUR CHILDREN IT’S ALMOST HARD TO IMAGINE BEING IN LOVE WITH ANYTHING ELSE AS MUCH”

What has been most surprising about parenthood for you? What were your expectations about being a parent and how are they different from the reality?

A lot of parenthood is almost clichéd but that’s because it’s true. When you see your children it’s almost hard to imagine being in love with anything else as much, and they become the centre of your universe. You also have a deeper respect for your own parents because you come to realise that parenting is neither easy nor obvious. I was born the same year my dad opened the first Sandals Resort in 1981, and as a result I spent lots of time with my mum. At the time you don’t appreciate how challenging it is until of course you are doing it yourself.

Is 3 the magic number or do you want to have more children?

Three is definitely the magic number. It’s all we can get in the back of the car!

How has becoming a dad changed or impacted you as a person?

It’s certainly made me think di fferently, that’s for sure. You align your priorities, your life completely, and remember that you are responsible for their well-being. I also accept that the carefree part of life disappears!

With 3 kids, how do you ensure that you're spending quality time with each of them?

Aston and Sloan are relatively similar in age and are developing their personalities more or less at the same time and can play together whereas Camden is a babe in arms which certainly makes things easier. It’s hard work of course but the trick is spending as much time as possible together as a family.

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With Adam so often off in his global o ces, do Aston, Sloan and Camden have any idea that their Daddy is such a hard-worker? Not likely. “My family is the world to me, so I do what I have to do ensure that they know that. When I’m with them, I’m all theirs. And they know, even when I’m at work, I’m still theirs,” laughs an obviously proud and happy father.

So with expansion plans in the works for the Sandals chain, Adam Stewart is sure to have his hands full with

acquisitions and business deals. Though he has been charged with the continued success of the empire his father built decades ago, his most important role yet, has and continues to be doting daddy, playmate and mentor to his three children.

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Adam Stewart is the CEO of Sandals Resorts International (SRI), which owns and operates Caribbean-based Sandals Resorts, Beaches Resorts and Grand Pineapple Beach Resorts.

Styling: Norma

Wardrobe: Max Brown Limited

Disengaged fatherhood has long been a source of discussion in many circles. While mothers have been the front-runners often carrying the weight of her family, real life experiences and numerous studies continue to affirm the important role of a father in the healthy development of children.

There is an increase of father participation in the lives of their children. Perhaps, a marginal gain on a global scale, but in the lives of the associated children, that’s a significant victory. It’s been a long time coming, but change is finally in effect. Today’s fathers are more involved and more passionate about parenting than ever before. Socioeconomic backgrounds aside, many fathers are standing up and being counted among those responsible for raising their children.

In this issue we venture into the dancehall and sit with 3 of Jamaica’s most prolific entertainers: Konshens, Agent Sasco and Wayne Marshall. Each of them commands an

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KONSHENS
Photography: Dwayne Watkins
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impressive following far beyond the shores of their island home. Sold-out stage shows and trending songs on iTunes may define their lives for work, but today the spotlight shines di fferently on them as they report for duty.

Garfield Spence is daddy to 6-year-old Sajhi. He’s attentive to a fault, and has a soft spot for his daughter’s sad face. While he tries to be a staunch disciplinarian most of the time, he admits to being nothing but putty in her hands. And though he knows when to put his foot down, all she has to do is cry to completely shatter his heart.

Garfield is better known as Konshens, and everyday he maneuvers the challenge of being one of the dancehall’s most desired men, and being a doting daddy to his only child. Tough to do? By some standards, maybe, but Konshens doesn’t follow what is ‘standard’.

At 29, this young entertainer has been dubbed the ‘new face of dancehall music’ by many, and has already received several nominations and a host of awards. That’s far from standard. “I don’t operate on, or below par, in anything that I do”, says Konshens. Being a father in Jamaica’s dancehall community may easily be overlooked as the ‘norm’ – whether or not he accepts the responsibility that comes with the title. “For me, becoming a father”, explains Konshens, “had nothing to do with popular opinion or John Public. I knew that the only choice I had, was to be there, to be present, for my child.”

“I have 6 years of parenting under my belt, and it has been 6 good years. Sahji has a great mother who makes my job of being a father real easy. It’s uncomplicated and stress-free; we have our daughter's well-being in mind.”

Demonstrating wisdom and maturity far beyond his years, Konshens speaks candidly about the influence his daughter has had on his life. “I’ve always been driven and ambitious, but my daughter has amplified all of that tenfold. She also softened my heart towards women - I can’t even tell a lie anymore,” says Konshens as he laughs.

Knowing full well the responsibility that rests on his shoulders as the first man in Sahji’s life, Konshens believes that the teachings and discipline in the home, are what sets the parameters within which his daughter will operate. His parenting style draws a clear line between what is for adults, and what is for kids. “Just

“ THE FACT THAT I SING SONGS WITH ADULT CONTENT DOES NOT AFFECT MY APPROACH TO PARENTING MY DAUGHTER.”

like when I was younger, it was challenging then too, because there is no way to completely shelter kids from adult content in music or movies. It is everywhere. But even more so now, because we have the ‘internet‘ to deal with, so it’s ten times worse. The fact that I sing songs with adult content does not a ffect my approach to parenting my daughter. If you’re a mother or father, be a “parent” regardless. Protect your child, while preparing their minds for the realities you cannot protect them from. The songs I sing, and the videos I make involve fully-grown adult women. What is for adults is for adults, and what is for kids is for kids!”

With a career on a meteoric rise that is characterised by long hours in studio, days on end away on tour, managing other artistes, and building his shoe line; spending quality time with Sahji cannot be easy to achieve. “No, it’s not easy”, Konshens explains. “To be real, I don’t think I’ve been able to find that balance yet, but I really do try. Everything that I have on my plate, is extremely demanding. My shoe line is blowing up internationally, and I’m at a very exciting place in my life,” says Konshens as he discreetly reveals the latest design from his Konz line of men’s shoes. Smiling, he continues, “For Sahji, I do all I can to make sure every single thing she needs is totally taken care of. When we’re together, I make the very best of each moment I spend with her. Just being in her presence, doing ‘anything’ is perfect for me - except when she drop

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asleep,” he laughs. When she’s awake, Daddy fills many roles – protector, friend, playmate, teacher and confidante. “Six-year-old girls have little secrets, and I keep them all,” shares Konshens. “I want my daughter to know that she can trust me, and this is where it starts.”

Sahji is a girly girl. She loves all things pretty and pink, and while Daddy may eventually have his dreams for her future, right now, he just wants her to be happy. The best advice he could give to his daughter to encourage her to achieve her best? “There is so much; definitely not just one thing that will automatically make her into the best person she can be. I like to take it step-by-step, and situation-by-situation. That’s the best way, for me, to shape her outlook on life. I’m doing my best to protect her where I can, and educate her where I can. She’s a bright girl, who already knows how to think for herself. My role, like any other responsible father, is to guide my child.”

Konshens, on how fathers are doing today: “I think for the most part, that there has been great improvement with fathers today who have been stepping up big time in comparison to days gone by. It’s not yet where it should be, and I would encourage every father out there to love and protect his children. Provide for them, and most importantly, be there for them.”

Is Konshens prepared to have ‘the talk’ with his daughter? “I’m ready!!! I’ve been practicing,” he laughs. “I don’t know what age it’ll happen, but whenever the time comes, I’ll be ready. I’ve got this!!!”

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“MY CHILDREN LOVE TO ENTERTAIN,” LAUGHING AS HE SARCASTICALLY WONDERS WHERE THEY COULD HAVE POSSIBLY GOTTEN THAT TRAIT.

7-year-old, Allyanna, 2-year-old Lauren and 1-year-old Joshua have a Daddy who never fails to ignite his most ardent fans. His lyrics are engaging, his delivery powerful, and his energy is so high, it’s contagious. So contagious that even baby Joshua, Agent Sasco’s only son, is insistent on joining the chorus of the popular DJ’s rendition of “The Wheels on the Bus.” He has many fans the world over, but these three, I’m sure, are his favourite.

You don’t have to be with the Campbells for very long to know that all three children have inherited Daddy’s genes: self-assured, wise and born to perform.

Joshua, a.k.a. JC, is just finding his footing. Literally. He’s recently started walking and already has his diaper swag going on. Ever seen a confident one year old? Well this little man is nothing but. His ‘silent-riversrun-deep’ stare makes you wonder just what his little mind is plotting while he waddles carefully to the beat, concentrating on his newly learned strut. Big sister Ally, as if instinctively, nears her brother in protective mode. She’s ready to break his fall, and unknowingly shows her strong, serious side. All this while the Agent watches attentively. He’s clearly in Daddy-mode, and rightfully so. He’s blessed with incredibly beautiful children. Little miss LC has already graced the cover of b3, and has the charm to hypnotise everyone in her wake. Allyanna, at just 7 years old, possesses the grace and elegance of a real-life princess.

Though entertaining large audiences comes with the territory of being a respected artiste, Jeff rey, a.k.a. Agent Sasco, makes sure that each of his little fans gets to enjoy their own one on one moments with daddy.

“Time management is critical, especially with the time demands of my career. I try to be home whenever I can before they go to sleep in the evenings,” he shares. “When I’m home I hang out with them as much as I can. My children love to entertain,” laughing as he sarcastically wonders where they could have possibly gotten that trait. “We spend a lot of time singing and dancing and having crazy fun with each other. The age di fferences also play a part in how time is shared among them. Ally and I have great conversations on so many di fferent topics. She’s very curious and bright, and full of questions. She’s big enough to accompany me when I run errands, while for now, LC and JC are still too young for the hassle. Lauren and Joshua are still babies, so they LOVE to hear my voice. I make up stories, and sing to them a lot. They love it, and so do I,” a beaming Sasco reveals.

With more than a decade as a successful DJ, Agent Sasco’s confident and forceful stage show persona has become the stu ff of legends in the dancehall. But being around him when he’s in daddy mode exposes a gentler side to this imposing figure: glowingly complimenting Allyanna on how pretty she looks in her dress, tenderly reminding little Lauren to sit like a lady and playfully tickling baby Joshua to coax out a smile. Though he’s fun-loving with his kids, the serious Sasco, whom we

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sometimes see during performances, has a no-nonsense approach when it comes to disciplining his children.

“My principles are a part of both my professional and personal life. At times, my work is about fun, and sometimes it’s about serious issues. I know when to switch hats. Similarly, I am fun dad sometimes and when necessary I’m serious dad. I must say though, I’m way more patient as a father than I am at anything else.”

Hoping to impart certain values and attitudes to their children, Sasco and his wife agree that discipline is a function of that process. They attempt to curb behaviour that is not consistent with their family ideals and goals. As a couple, they use varied approaches to discipline as di fferent situations arise, and have found that speaking with them, and showing options and other ways of looking at things, is the best and most effective way for them. “We do whatever we feel is in the best interest of helping the kids develop good values and sound qualities,” explains Sasco.

With the now commonplace use of social media, how does this very public figure manage to keep his personal life private? “Social media is integral, and I do share a bit of personal and family content on my Facebook and Instagram, but personal content management is

necessary. I’m very proud of my children and their achievements along the way, but I’m also very careful to guard not just our privacy as a family, but theirs as individuals as well. I really just keep our very personal family matters outside of the public space.”

Sasco knows that being a celebrity is not just about making music. It’s about the person behind the music, and being able to stand tall and represent himself, even after the stage lights go out. “Having children has made me more conscious of the musical legacy I will leave. I now consider what my children’s children are going to think about grandpa's work. It’s also incredibly flattering when the kids like a song. I was shocked the other night when I asked L.C. if she knew any of my songs and she said “Yes Daddy, Day In Day Out”.

"It felt like I had won a Grammy just because she acknowledged the song.”

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If all goes according to 7-year-old Gio’s plans, it shouldn’t be too long before daddy Wayne will be ‘kickin’ it’ at the olympic-sized pool that he’ll be buying for his Mummy. Along with his father, and ‘Uncle’ Sasco, Giomar is riding an incredible wave in the dancehall, that sees their collaboration receiving heavy rotation on local and international airwaves. Daddy Wayne couldn’t be happier. He welcomed his second son almost 6 months ago, making his mini musician, a big brother. Jaxen’s arrival is the proverbial icing on the cake. “This is it for me; I’ve had an awesome year!”

Wayne Marshall is a proud father who made the decision to allow his 7-year-old son to ‘enter’ the dancehall on the currently trending single “Stupid Money”. How does he feel about exposing his young son to the industry? “Music is in our blood. I don’t force him into music, it comes naturally to him, and it’s fun for him, so I try to keep it like that,” says Wayne.

With the song’s seemingly heavy focus on money and wealth, Wayne explains the lesson behind the music. “Stupid Money is not about being stupid with the money it’s about having ‘stupid’ amounts of money.” Stupid being the slang for plenty or copious amounts, sees the song speaking about dreaming big dreams, and not limiting oneself. Stupid Money was written to inspire people to aim for great success. We don’t worship money and vanity, but the reality is that money is crucial to survival in this system.”

As his father, Wayne sees it as his responsibility to steer Gio through the entertainment industry. If you’re lucky enough to meet this charming young man, you’ll be struck by his humility and sincerity. “Gio is not the kid to dwell on popularity, that’s not why he comes on stage. It’s always been a part of him and I believe a child is never too young to explore God-given talents.” Though Gio is free to choose any path he wishes, Daddy believes that this is just the beginning of his son’s musical journey. His advice to him is to learn his instruments, which will serve as the best foundation to build on his natural ability.

Wayne, like his friend and industry colleague Agent Sasco, represents a large sector of Caribbean men who stand at the helm of blended families. Gio’s mother, and Jaxen’s mother, Wayne’s wife, are the reason it all works. “I am blessed to have great women in my life who are easy to communicate with. We have always put Giomar first in all things,” says the always-smiling Wayne. “Too many parents place kids in the middle of relationship drama, that inevitably messes them up. Giomar knows

“MY SONS ARE SUPER SPECIAL AND I THINK THEY VALIDATE WHO I AM AS A PERSON, BECAUSE IF GOD SAW IT FIT TO BLESS ME WITH THEM I GUESS I MUST BE PRETTY SPECIAL TOO.”
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he has a unique family structure and he loves his mother and stepmother dearly. Any other dynamic would be strange for him, that’s all he knows.”

Respect for each other keeps the lines of communication open in their lives. That, and open discussion. “I have never left it to chance whether he gets it or not, we discuss everything on his mind at the right times,” says Wayne emphatically. This daddy knows that some people have to dig deeper than others to put emotions aside, and look at the bigger picture, but his firm belief is that putting children first should always be the highest priority for parents.

There is an energy that exudes from a father who loves being a Dad. And though

is having healthy and happy children, and watching them progress and grow into being independent thinkers. He is proud to observe how quickly Jaxen is picking up new things, and how well Giomar is developing as a young man. He is proud to be his brother’s keeper. “My sons are super special and I think they validate who I am as a person, because if God saw it fit to bless me with them I guess I must be pretty special too.”

As a longtime positive role model, in and outside of the dancehall, Wayne is cognizant of setting an example. Wayne’s wish for fathers today? “Observe the delivery process and understand the miracle that takes place when a new life is born.

Wayne makes a valiant attempt to look serious, the joy in his life prevents the poker face from shining through. He starts to speak about Jaxen. “Bwoy, I love being a father. I couldn’t imagine my life without Gio and Jaxen.”

Like any good ‘Marshall’, Wayne made sure to prepare for Jaxen’s arrival. Ensuring that big brother wouldn’t feel neglected was an important part of the process that was tackled by involving Gio in all aspects of planning to welcome the baby.

Across the Caribbean, so many new fathers revel in the pride of having boys. For some, it’s an extra-special blessing to ‘carry on the family name’. That may be so, but for Wayne, the best part of parenting

Natural instinct of responsibility should chip in at that moment when you see what a mother has to go through. You can't really force somebody to be a good father but at the end of the day the greatest thing you can do for yourself and your children is to be there for them as a positive guiding force. I’ve learned that children are much smarter than we think they are. They observe things you wouldn't expect, and are quick to emulate us most of the time. Parents teach by example, so our actions are critical. For me, I'm always trying to be the best father I can be for my boys.”

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Yello knows how to find whatever you’re looking for.
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Editor's Picks!

for Daddy

The most awesome thing about being a dad is that it takes very little effort to be cool. In the eyes of a child, Daddy is the ultimate hero, and can do no wrong.

Father's Day is a long way off, but it's our daddy issue, so we're celebrating regardless! There are so many great accessories that make life both fun and functional for dad. Here are a few of my favourites –each one serving its purpose, and at the same time, reminding Daddy of his!

“I’m the Daddy” frame

They grow up so fast! Capture the moment and frame it in this handcrafted and hand-finished “I’m the Daddy” frame! It is made from select fine woods, with full velvet back, two-way easel stand and wall hangers. Size: 5x7 • Dark Walnut

Finish • Wood Frame with “I’m The Daddy” Engraving

www.daddyncompany.com $15.95

The DaddySwag Gift Box

Treat the new dad in your life like the celebrity he is with The DaddySwag

Gift Box filled with great I’m The Daddy branded accessories - tee shirt, baseball cap, sunglasses and other fun items. And when the big day arrives, turn up your delivery room swag with your DaddyScrubs! You’ll be dressed for the occasion, and ready to welcome the reason you can say “I’m The Daddy”!!! www.daddyncompany.com

10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022
$ 69 .95

I Love Daddy Tie

Everyone knows the quintessential gift for every dad is a new tie! The bright I Love Daddy Tie is made of 100% woven silk. Each tie comes in a special keepsake box, complete with the quote, “Any man can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a daddy.” Give daddy a tie from DaddyScrubs; he is sure to treasure this gift forever.

www.daddyncompany.com $29.95

BabyPing

You’re an on-the-go-Dad, but you want to stay connected to your baby at home. Here’s how to keep your baby in the palm of your hand. Your life is already full of baby products – why do you want to add another bundle of items? BabyPing helps you streamline your life with just a simple baby monitor and your iOS device. No chargers, no bulky handheld units, no spare batteries, and no computers are required to use BabyPing. The BabyPing app is always monitoring your baby, even when you cannot see it – allowing you to use your iOS device how you want to : on Twitter, playing games, listening to music –the BabyPing app auto-switches to the best possible monitoring mode whatever you do.

www.babyping.com $199.99

The DadGear Messenger

Calling all dads! New dads, old dads, soon-to-be dads... Show the world that you’re the coolest, suavest, diaper-bag-toting dad around! The DadGear Messenger Bag is a diaper bag that Dad will proudly carry. Styled like a bike messenger bag, it' s comfortable, durable, and looks cool too. On the inside, it’s packed with thoughtful features like the convenient baby wipes window, and it’s designed to be “hands - free” so you can change, feed, and entertain your child without ever having to set the bag down.

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dadgear.com $79

Seamless Summer Travel… with children

Planning to travel with small kids for the summer? I suggest you do not do it. I work in the airline industry, so I know what I’m talking about. Day in, day out, I see Oscarworthy performances by the tiniest little people, who traverse the skies in search of holiday fun. They kick and scream, whine and moan; and very often, it’s due to no fault of their own. If you must travel, here are my fool-proof suggestions that will guarantee you a low-to-no-stress trip. Feel free to tweak accordingly.

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Firstly, select an airline that suits your needs. If you wish amenities such as snacks and free drinks, free in-flight entertainment, be sure to ask the airline if they provide these options. Some airlines offer Wifi, XM radio and even direct TV. Some are free, some are not; so be sure to ask the airline. Your children will be entertained without having to leave their seats, and you may get a chance to nap while they watch television. If you select an airline without entertainment please bring your own cards, DVD players and games especially for flights longer than 2 hours. Also bring your own snacks or stop in the terminal and grab something to eat. Remember most airlines do not offer a hot meal.

IF IT IS AT ALL POSSIBLE, PACK ‘LIGHT’. IF YOU CAN’T PACK LIGHTLY, PACK A BARREL, AND SHIP IT.

KNOW YOUR AIRLINE’S BAGGAGE POLICIES

Throughout the Caribbean, locally based airlines tend to be the ones that offer two pieces of checked bags. Most US based carriers, will levy a fee for a second checked piece. Weight limitations are strictly enforced at check-in counters, so it would suit you well to use your home scale to ensure you are within the 50lb restriction prior to arriving at the airport. If it is at all possible, pack ‘light’. If you can’t pack lightly, pack a barrel, and ship it.

AVOID REDEYE/NIGHT HAWK FLIGHTS

This messes with your child’s circadian rhythm. While it may be more economical to take the late night flight, your child will be miserable unless he or she is a night owl. If your child is a night owl, you may want to take a closer look at that pattern. Older children may fare better. I have seen too many babies, toddlers and young children looking uncomfortable, and under unnecessary ‘stress’ on these flights. The sight to behold is the parent who falls asleep while the child wanders around the plane. Beware, somebody will call child services. If you have flight options, choose wisely.

UNACCOMPANIED MINORS

Most airlines are specialists in the transportation of young ones. Remember to brief your children and the airline representative accordingly. Without scaring them, remind your child of the importance of listening to the agent and flight attendant. They should never exit the aircraft unless the flight attendant hands

them over to the gate agent. Never, and I say never, ever accept packages from anyone to bring on or take off the aircraft. If the child or children have never traveled unaccompanied before, ensure that you document any allergies or illnesses with the airline. As the parent or guardian you are allowed a gate pass to accompany the child or children to the aircraft. Please remember do not leave the airport until the plane takes off. A rule of thumb dictates that the parent or guardian wait at the airport for an addition thirty minutes in the event that the plane returns to the gate for any reason. Finally, ensure that your child has the name and contact of the person who will meet them at the airport. Most airlines will allow a courtesy call to the person or persons meeting your unaccompanied child or children. Some airlines offer a tracking feature which details the time of arrival. Please use it.

AVOID CONNECTIONS

There are real savings when one takes the connection option. Again, if your children are older then go for the savings, but remember that not all connections are seamless. Depending on the airport, terminal changes could mean exiting one terminal and going through security again. And after clearing customs your liquids must be checked in if you are connecting. Take all possibilities into consideration. With weather or air tra c delays, your airline is not responsible for any misconnections. They will accommodate you and your children on the next available flight and that may take a few hours or a few days. You are responsible for all hotels and meals.

REST UP

Get a good night’s sleep; you AND your child. The day may be hectic. Check in, security, immigration, boarding, deplaning, immigration again and customs will always be stressful even for the seasoned traveler. A good night’s sleep will make it a little more tolerable.

DRESS COMFORTABLY

Be sure to dress comfortably, but please no pajamas! Gone are the days of suit and ties, especially for children; but we need not turn this travel experience into a sleepover. It is not a good look. A T-shirt and a pair of jeans - and we are good to go. Again, please no pajamas.

ON-BOARD PREPARATION

Ensure your carry-on piece is well equipped to face the possibilities that can occur in-flight. Many airlines don’t have su cient blankets or pillows. Bring a sweater or jacket for your child, and you can consider purchasing a small neck pillow for added comfort. Chewing gum is always a great thing to have, to ward off the discomfort of blocked ears. Parents, if your child has a cold or sinus infection, please do not allow them to travel. This is pure torture for your child, and the cabin pressure can agitate or worsen the situation.

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Please remember to check in your liquids. If you have young children who are old enough to pack their own bags, be sure to inspect their bags thoroughly. I have seen too many kids throw a tantrum because they refuse to part with their favourite body sprays or hair gels. Also please avoid the toy guns. You will have a problem at the security check point. TSA is not fond of guns - toy or not, and neither are customs o cials in many Caribbean islands. They will be confiscated on your arrival in Jamaica and Barbados.

SEPARATION ANXIETY

Ok, so you’ve checked in, and received your seat assignments. Lil Miss Sunshine is in 13A and Lil Man is seated in 8B while you, Mommy Dearest are all the way in 25C . Let the panicking begin. While all airlines try to seat families together, it is not always possible. Some airlines allow you to select your own seat when booking your reservation but this does not mean the seat you selected will be available at check in. The earlier you arrive at the airport is the greater the probability of actually getting the seat that you chose.

While there is no way of guaranteeing that everyone is seated in the same row here are a few ways to minimize the probabilities of separation. Most airlines allow online check in 24 hours before departure so please set your alarm and check in 24 hours before departure. Although you have checked in 24 hours prior to

departure you must also check in again at the counter to get the boarding passes. Listen very carefully, I shall say this only once. Call the airline and inquire what time the check in counter opens and get there at that time. I guarantee the whole generation will be seated beside each other if you are the first to check in.

If this is not possible, please do not argue. Kindly ask the agent to assist in seating your family close to each other. If this is still not possible, then during boarding ask the passengers who are occupying the seats beside your children or you to assist you by switching seats. Note that this may not work because they may be sitting beside the children and wish not to separate their family. If your child is younger than six then it’s highly likely that someone will assist you. Ask the flight attendant to assist if necessary. Regardless of your destination or your budget, the traveling experience is second to none. Remember it is what you make it. If you are stressed your child or children will become stressed. If there is motion sickness or you are a nervous flier, try not to instigate that fear in your child. There is no shame is telling your Flight Attendant that you’re not entirely comfortable with flying – he or she will keep an eye on you. You paid all this money to get on a plane so enjoy the experience and remember to pick up a gift for your loved ones who will meet you at the airport. There is nothing worse than greeting your family or relatives at the airport with a smile, a hug and your two long hands. L.O.L. Happy Flying!

Joe Cornwall is a seasoned flight attendant who has over 14 years experience in the industry. If he were not a Flight Attendant, he would be a stand-up comic.

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Mini Models

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- Styling and Makeup: Angelie Spencer

very mother believes her child is special. Each child is unique and individually gifted, but is your child meant for the spotlight? We’re talking about the spotlight other than the one on the end of your camera at home where Mommy and Daddy proudly cheer on their little superstar. Let’s take a look at the process of creating a mini model.

The first question that begs to be asked and answered is “does my child want to model, or do I?” Many parents live vicariously through their children and in the case of having your child fulfill your dreams; this is often the source of resentment and disappointment in both parent and child. So be honest with yourself and true to your child.

CONFIDENCE CREATION

Going to an audition can be intimidating for anyone, and even more so for a child. Having to stand and speak in front of a group of unfamiliar faces can reverse all the practice sessions you have endured with your child at home. But it’s par for the course. They have to master this first step in order to make it to the next. Simple confidence builders can include letting your child do some of the things that you automatically do for them; place their own order at a restaurant, tell the doctor how they feel and ask the store attendant where the bathroom is. You’d be surprised how these small acts help to reduce their fear of interacting with others. Start early and you’ll reap early results.

WORK, WORK, WORK… ETHIC

Though your child may think this is all fun and games, they can also develop meaningful skills. Listening to and following instructions given to them by a grown-up other than a parent is important in helping them to learn from di fferent sources. They’ll learn how to be on time, work hard and interact well with other children; valuable life skills that are best learned from an early age.

GREAT REWARDS

Children receive compensation for jobs depending on a variety of factors ranging from clients with big budgets to pay handsome cheques, to smaller businesses that may only offer products and or services in lieu of cash. Once your child starts ‘working’ you should definitely open a savings account for them. This can give you and them the opportunity to learn about saving and using money and it can also serve as a way in securing their future. So, if you have a budding lawyer or doctor on your hands, at least you’d have had some money saved up for their tuition-with a little help from them!

“MODELING IS AN INCREDIBLE JOB FOR A GIRL IF SHE APPROACHES IT WITH HER HEAD ON HER SHOULDERS. YOU TRAVEL, YOU SPEAK TO PEOPLE AND IT OPENS YOUR MIND TO DIFFERENT THINGS.”
-
E
Anja Rubik 190 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022
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Mini model hopefuls: Back row, left to right: Bethany Hill, Breanna Campbell, Ajeda Thomas, Ella McConnell, Kailen-Jade Wiggan and Sadhbh Delves Front row, left to right: Jah Chrisi Beadle, Chelsea Wright, Emily Black and Cai Roberts
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Get brand ed jamaica876@gmail.com

If you decide to have your child enter the modeling scene, here are a few things to consider:

BEGIN AT THE BEGINNING. Get some basic, but nice photos taken. Don’t spend tons of money on this part of the process. Not yet, at least. How your child photographs is not just about how cute they look on your phone camera. There’s no doubt that your child is the most adorable out there but there are some agencies that aren’t totally hung up on outstanding looks. They look for children who ooze charisma and are able to adapt well to di fferent circumstances. Agencies aren’t always looking for the most picture-perfect child.

FIND A REPUTABLE AGENCY. Modeling agencies that work specifically with children in the Caribbean are few and far between. Check around though, because there are several smaller companies that

“GIRLS OF ALL KINDS CAN BE BEAUTIFUL – FROM THE THIN, PLUS-SIZED, SHORT, VERY TALL EBONY TO PORCELAINSKINNED, THE QUIRKY, CLUMSY, SHY, OUTGOING, AND ALL IN BETWEEN”
- Tyra Banks
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moment.
Share the

offer representational services. The market for child model placement is significantly smaller in this region, but the small global community provided by the Internet has eliminated such barriers. Be aware of illegitimate proposals that are often identified by exorbitant commission rates and requests for early payment.

BE REALISTIC.

“Your child can be very beautiful, very handsome, and still not be model material. Height, weight, bone structure, skin texture, teeth, and hair all play a major role. Esthetically the standards are high, and it is almost impossible to have the entire package,” shares Cynthia Bailey, owner of The Bailey Agency School of Fashion in Atlanta. “The industry has set guidelines, but be sure your child KNOWS that acceptance or rejection in the modeling industry does not define their beauty or their worth.”

Interested? Then get on it! Do your research, find the right agency for you and your child, get ready to run from one audition to the next and remember, this should be fun for your child!

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DIVA

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DESIGNS BY RAINA Diva Designs by Raina jumped right into summer season with stylish beach and pool wear along with ready to wear casuals and sportswear.

THE FASHION EXPERIENCE

When fierce mini models from an allisland model search hit the runway for the first-ever children’s fashion show no one knew what to expect. A new bar was set when fashion enthusiasts, parents and wellwishers gathered on the lawns of the Formal Gardens at Devon House in Kingston, Jamaica to witness the first children’s fashion showcase Island Child Style courtesy of B3. It was a spectacle to behold almost reminiscent of a scene from the childhood novel The Secret Garden. The show featured seventy-two, yes seventy-two toddler to teen models strutting exclusive collections from fifteen local and regional designers including Carlton Brown, Neah Lis, drennaLUNA, Julan, and Anthony Reid in the hopes of being selected for one coveted spot at a week-long camp at The Bailey

Agency School of Fashion in Atlanta- the brainchild of Real Housewives of Atlanta star Cynthia Bailey. The showcase featured a mixture of youthful, high spirited, and couture collections and even one from a duo of preteen designers. It spoke, in particular, to show-goers with youthful memories living vicariously through their children.

Cynthia Bailey, who partnered with the B3 on its initiative, announced the child star selected to spend a week at her agency to a tense audience. Brianna Campbell, who effortlessly wore a couture Gleaner print dress by Pebbles King went from model in the making to upcoming fashion star and was on her way to embark on an unforgettable journey. Here’s an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at how the collections came together.

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GABI GIRL

Gabi Girl brought playful and sporty style stood out for innovatively incorporating the traditional bandanna print into high fashion pieces creating a couture collection with rich Jamaican history.

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A’MARIE

A’MARIE unveiled high fashion swimwear with mesh and glittered cover-ups and ball gowns depicting a scene from a Super Sweet Sixteen.

KNOCK ABOUT KIDS

Knock About Kids reminded us of playtime in a spring garden with vibrant stripes, fun layered frills, and flower appliqué on various pieces.

KOKOBEENZ

Coco Beans kept it chic in all white in cool linens, with blue floppy hat accent for the ladies and button side slit shirts for the gentlemen.

SOLSAI

Created by an eight and nine and year old duo, SolSai channeled their inner Punky Brewster with mesh, cropped tops, combat boots and colourful poofy skirts.

NEAHLIS

Designer Lisa McIntosh-Aris translated her signature easy going resort wear style with vibrant tie-dyes and tropical prints into ready to wear for the younger generation. Could this be the start of a local “twinning” trend?

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ANTHONY REID / MEILING

Trinidadian-based Anthony Reid in a collaboration with top Designer Meiling took us on a new course in children’s wear when his impeccable suave style translated into a menswear collection with stylish contrasting patterns and geometric lines.

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DRENNALUNA

drennaLUNA brought trendy luxury to the runway with high fashion designs accented with oversized flower crowns and funky fresh blue African prints. Even an adorable dog made a surprising appearance during the line!

ZAID

Zaid stayed true to form with his love for roots culture designing tailored male and female pieces accented by rasta colours and religious emblems.

AIYA RAINWEAR

Bahamian line Ajya Rainwear made playing in the rain a thing again featuring signature over-the top raincoats in brights, plastics, pastels and earth tones.

N’LIGHT’N

N’light’n took onlookers on a style ‘safari’ with crisp, vibrant African-inspired patterns and prints just in time for the summer.

CARLTON BROWN

In a collab with Drenna Luna, Carlton Brown brought white “preppy boy” suits in baby blue stripes with white oxfords and golf clubs.

The Island Child Style fashion experience further solidified Jamaica’s position as a creative hub of Caribbean fashion alongside global trendsetters such as Hong Kong, New York, London and Paris which have long been staging children fashion shows. This event introduced a new dimension to Jamaica’s social scene and opened talent, designers and brands to new and potential markets.

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PEBBLES KING

Reflections by Pebbles King showcased ready to wear redcarpet style in time for prom season. Memories by Julan brought pops of bright colours accented with a black and white plaid print then showed her versatility with elegant gowns.

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•It is estimated that by 2036, the full cost of a 4-year undergraduate degree fom an American university could exceed $388,515* for an International Student

•Heritage Education Funds International has been helping families save for their children’s post-secondary/ tertiary education for over 30 years

• Grandparents and other family members can also contribute to an Education Savings Plan (ESP)

•Educational Assistance Payments can be used towards a recognized post-secondary/tertiary institution anywhere in the world

KNOWLEDGE IS POWER.

Heritage ESP Sales Representatives provide valuable information to assist you in choosing an ESP that best suits your family's needs.

For a no-obligation consultation, contact:

Direct: Business:

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E-mail: *This amount is for international students and are averaged based on the university and the program selected. British Overseas Territory students are exempt from International student rates under certain conditions. Amounts can and will vary based on currency exchange rate fluctuations and the type of program selected. Source: www.collegeboard.org The Heritage Education Funds International Plan is offered by prospectus only. © 2020, Heritage Education Funds International, LLC. 1044/HST-PA-Ad/03-17 DID YOU KNOW? HeritageESP.com Education Funds International Sanchia
Business:
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Henry-Gibson Direct:
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Children of the Caribbean Rocking the Streets of Downtown Kingston, Island Style Photography: Dwayne Watkins • Styling : Angelie Spencer
Wardrobe: Zion Rootswear, Wonderboy Clothing, Imoga Collection
Accessories: Pikinini Jamaica, Male Ego www.zionrootswear.com
www.wonderboyclothing.com
Crochet Pieces: Pikinini (www.babeeliciousja.com)
Girls Tutus: Lisa-Gaye Chin
210 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 STREETSMART One Love Shoulder Canvas Bag $33 • Catch A Fire Military Zip Hoodie (Military Green) $65 • Marley Wailers Lion Youth Tie Dye Tee $23 • Love, Heart & World Wristband $6 • Marley Logo Cadet Cap (Military Green) $21 • Nice Time Kids Mic Toddler Pants (Black) $39 • Catch A Fire One Love Toddler Hoodie (Green) $66
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212 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 CHuck Off! Catch A Fire Peace & Love A-Line Tank Dress (Coco) $31 • Marley Rasta Straw Cadet $25
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214 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 SIGHTED: IRIE DAUGHTA Nice Time Mic Toddler Pants (Black) $39 • White Button Down Shirt Wonderboy Clothing Collection $52-$56 • Paisley Green Bowtie $34 • Bob Marley Reggae Revolution Hoodie $66 • Love, Heart & World Wristband (Green) $6
216 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 FROM MY HEART TO YOURS Nice Time Mic Toddler Pants (Black) $39 • White Button Down Shirt Wonderboy Clothing Collection $52-$56 • Paisley Green Bowtie $34 • Bob Marley Reggae Revolution Hoodie $66 • Love, Heart & World Wristband (Green) $6
| B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE| 217 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 LUDO LYME Get Up Toddler Jacket (Black) $66 • Nice Time Revolution Toddler Jacket (Grey) $66 • Marley Wailers Lion Youth Tie Dye Tee $23 • Marley Sway Toddler Pants $39
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Get Up Toddler Hoodie (Black) $66 • “B” is for Bob Toddler Tee (Blue) $17 • Rastaman Toddler Jacket (Green) $66 Huggalugs Leg Warmers (Black & White) $12
220 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 SKIP,SKIP,SKIP TO MA LOU Marley Rasta Ruffle Top (Yellow) $39 • Cedella Marley Butterfly Toddler T Shirt (Pink) $21 • One Love Doll $15 • Pikinini Crochet Headband (Pink and Purple) $15-$25
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222 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 HAND CART Joy Ride Pikinini Crochet Headband (Red, Green & Gold) $15 - $25 • Halter Bubble Dress (Lime. Imoga Collection) $56 • Marley Flower One Love Toddler Dress (Plum) $60 • Marley Rasta Ruffle Top (Light Blue) $39
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One
$30 •
One
(Cream) $39 Bob
Rastafari
(Black) $21 • “B” is
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Sex and the MumSingle

There it was, staring right back at me, in the same way it had almost exactly two years ago to the day. In the same airport terminal bookstore in North Carolina. 50 Shades of Grey. I smiled in an all-knowing way and considered all that had happened since I bought that book back in the summer of 2012.

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Back then I was newly forty and newly single. With three kids. Totally unexpectedly. It was not a place I had ever even imagined. And I had no idea what to do once I found myself there. I was standing, heartbroken in a bookstore during a layover on my way to a conference in Connecticut, a long way from my little island home in The Bahamas. My mind was so tired. I had been trying to understand how a man can walk out on his family after 14 years together. I had been trying to figure it out, unsuccessfully, for six months. I knew I had a long and lonely 4 nights ahead of me, and I could feel despair clutching my heart as I considered being alone in the world. I knew I needed some senseless “summer reading”, something to distract me from long nights of too much wine and Facebook.

So I bought it and I read it in one night, instead of surfing the net or taking another 3-hour long bath just to pass the time. I read. And it was rubbish. But I couldn’t stop reading. And after my conference the next day I found the nearest bookstore and bought the other two. And I devoured them as well. As an English major, it was a deliciously frivolous thing to do. As I read, I found myself mourning the loss of my sex life. Not that it had ever approached the salaciousness of the acts described in the books, but at least I had been able to rely on completely staid, uninspiring sex once or twice a month. I had accepted that as normal. I was a mother. I wasn’t meant to want more. Was I? But now, even that was lost. How depressing.

Reading those terribly written (and yes! deliciously entertaining) books did more than keep me distracted during those four long days in Hartford; they also planted a seed. They flipped an internal switch. I promised myself that if I actually survived my husband leaving me, and if I ever found a man who was interested in dating a 40 plus woman with 3 kids and an almost non-existent bank account, I’d make the most of it. Sexually that is.

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pportunity knocked less than one month later with an outof-the-blue phone call from an ex-boyfriend. The universe was giving me another chance and this time I was determined not to blow it. Yay! Universe. We talked a lot. He was in Canada, I was in The Bahamas. Skype created a safe place for me. I could say what I wanted and yet still feel protected by the distance between us. It was intense. After 6 weeks, we planned to meet in Miami. We planned every detail. It was exciting and exhilarating. And when I stepped into that hotel room, three hours before he arrived, I could hardly stand. My legs shook with nervousness and anticipation. He did not disappoint me. It was an electric moment. I let go of everything. I let go of pain and rejection and worry and heartbreak and I focused on each moment as it happened. It was transformative. I was reborn.

Sex at 40 is worlds apart from sex at 26. It’s better. And, trust me, sex with a new man after you’ve been sleeping with the same old (not very good!) partner for 14 years and you’ve convinced yourself that you will never be loved again, is mind blowing. Gone is the awkward, self-conscious doubt. Replaced by a glorious confidence which must stem from the fact that although this body does not look quite the same as it did at 26, it’s still pretty fantastic. After all it survived the birth of three kids, and more than 48 months of breast feeding. Once you have been pregnant, you know how to ask for what you want. You learned this during those months when you demanded hot peppers with your ice cream, foot rubs in the movies and all those pillows placed in perfect sequence to keep you and your baby, comfortable (for at least 11 continuous minutes).

Sex as a single mother is about getting what you want, when you

want it. Frankly, you just don’t have the time to have it any other way. It is a deliberate act, a choice to do magical things for yourself. After years and years of putting yourself after your children and your husband, sex as a single mum suddenly, thankfully, becomes about you! You have to carve out those precious moments in between car pools and Christmas plays, and when you do, they are all for you. None of us single-mums-having-sex is thinking about the laundry when we get those moments. We are thinking, “I have earned this. I want this. I deserve this. I have cleaned toilets, read bedtime stories, washed dishes: I DESERVE THIS!”

The nice thing about being married for 14 years is that I knew exactly what I did not want in a sexual partner. I also knew that I had to speak up. It wasn’t my husband’s fault for being lousy in bed, it was mine because I never told him. I spent years of faking orgasms just so it would be over and I could get back to my book, or check on the kids. He thought he was a sexual god, I thought I was going to die of boredom. So now, the new liberated me has learned to speak up. At 41, I discovered “sexting”. Sending out those little messages in the middle of the day, or while walking the aisles at the supermarket made me feel like I was 20 again.

Two years into a relationship that I thought was going to be a fling to “get me back in the saddle again” I am still learning things that I never even considered in my old life. I have learned to take time for myself and not to feel guilty about it. We live in di fferent countries and we only see each other for a few days every six months. But when we do...well, someone should write a book about it, really. For the first time in a very long time, I feel in control of my life. I schedule those visits and I pay for them with money that I have earned. There is a very real freedom in that, and that freedom translates, for me, to the bedroom. And, honestly, I’m having the time of my life!

We know that it’s a different story for each mother going the parenting journey solo. For some it’s a breeze, while for others, well let’s say the wind has it’s way with them. We asked a few single mothers to give us their thoughts on sex in their city!

Sex is non-existent for me! My one and only focus is my daughter – financially, emotionally and physically. Plus, I don’t need a second child in my headspace – especially one who isn’t actually a child. Sex is overrated anyway. I’ve been celibate since my daughter’s conception, and that’s over three years ago. I like the simple life.

- Francine, mother of 2-year-old Solae

My husband and I separated when our son was 4 years old. Sexually, he was easily (and quickly) replaced by my toys very shortly after his departure. I was busy changing so many things in my life that I didn’t even focus on the fact that I was single. 3 years on from that,

I’m starved for non-battery operated attention. I have an on-again, off-again man in my life but my challenge now is that sex for the sake of just sex, has lost its appeal for me; I want more. I’m a package deal now, and want someone who will fill my need for companionship and also for sexual satisfaction.

Monique, mother of 8-year-old Alex

As the mother of a postteenaged child, sex for me is an absolute necessity. I still have a need to protect my image in the eyes of my daughter.

So sex for me, outside of an established relationship poses its own unique set of problems. I’m not presently in an exclusive relationship, but I do exercise

my womanhood with a ‘friend-withbenefits’ who is okay in a non-committal relationship. One major challenge is that of the simple logistics of entertaining my after-dark friend without having to introduce him to my daughter. Another challenge is that it becomes necessary to contain my expressive nature during the act of sex, out of fear that my daughter will hear her ‘virtuous’ mother in the throes of passion. There are times when I wish my arrangement would progress into a serious relationship, but as I am non-negotiable on the fact that my daughter and I are a twofor-one deal, I wonder if that will limit the potential of me developing a genuine relationship.

Vicky, mother of 18-year-old Elizabeth

O
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Fabulous & Fertile

In a time not so long ago, women were bombarded by ideas of a ticking time bomb; more commonly referred to as, the biological clock. The biological clock is literally the New Year’s Eve countdown to motherhood, where you ring in a new chapter of your life. Today, “the clock” still ticks, but there are women delaying becoming mothers. For some, this is due to circumstances outside of their control, while others are making a conscious decision to wait until a little later in life to start a family.

Motherhood has evolved over the past decade or so. No longer do you have to be a twenty- or thirty-somethingyear-old homemaker (although that's still ok); today you can be a forty-something mother and CEO.

There has been a paradigm shift and women are at the helm. Statistics show that for the last few years there has been a steady increase in women getting pregnant closer to and after the age of forty.

This can be attributed to a change in priority for most women. For some married women, more time is invested in their relationship and prolonging the honeymoon period before baby makes three. The independent women are also looking into focusing on themselves first before considering motherhood, with or without a partner. Ladies are now more focused on

furthering their education and establishing a career before child-rearing, ensuring that they have set up a life for themselves prior to being responsible for another.

Forty is the new twenty. Well maybe not. But, forty is a new fabulous time to be a mom. And fabulous these moms are; successful career women with not only an MBA and SUV, but a designer diaper bag and car seat to complete the ensemble. So for all you almost forty-year-olds worried that your kid’s diaper bag will ruin your corporate attire, think again. The rubber ducky motifs of the past have been upgraded to chic momon-the-go accessories. Maternity clothes are no longer oversized yards of fabric, but cute well-fitted fashion-forward attire.

Mothers in their forties are not only more fashionably fabulous; they are more mature, grounded women often times in a better position financially to care for children.

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Older moms have more life experience which often contributes to better parenting. Moms over forty would have spent enough time investing in their own development of self and character, which enable them to impart this wealth of knowledge and experience to their child.

While maturity and financial stability are the pros to delaying motherhood to forty or older, the cons do exist. Science has made strides in support of enabling women to get pregnant later in life. However, science has also proven that the chances of getting pregnant significantly decline the older a women gets, so one must take into consideration that motherhood can be put off for so long and no more.

Regardless of whether you became a mom at or after forty, by choice or chance, excellent fertility, or adoption, fortysomething moms are making it happen. So

take note, having the career and the baby is possible, but to each his own. It all comes down to what your priorities are for your own life. Just remember, you can be fabulous in mommyhood regardless of the age that the journey with your little one begins.

“ MOTHERS IN THEIR FORTIES ARE NOT ONLY MORE FASHIONABLY FABULOUS; THEY ARE MORE MATURE, GROUNDED WOMEN OFTEN TIMES IN A BETTER POSITION FINANCIALLY TO CARE FOR CHILDREN. ”
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Planes Planes

Photography: Dwayne Watkins Shot on location: Ian Flemming International Airport, Boscobel, Jamaica
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Trains Trains

Photography: Dwayne Watkins Shot on location: Jamaica Railway Corporation, Kingston, Jamaica
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Automobiles AndAnd Automobiles

Photography: Dwayne Watkins Shot on location: Las Ola Farm, Grange Lane, St. Catherine, Jamaica
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Trave

www.foreaxelandhudson.com www.timiandleslie.com

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Opposite Page: Fore N Birdie Merrow short sleeve navy/white dress with shank buttons. Left: Fore N Birdie Shambray dress with navy and white stripe detail and button down placket Case: Timi and Leslie
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Speghetti Tops: Christianna Collection Skirts: Fore N Birdie Page-boy Hat: Fore N Birdie www.foreaxelandhudson.com
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Vintage Swirl Shift Dress: June Plum Clothing, Village Plaza, Kingston, Jamaica Dusty Rose and Black Dress: Kiddo by Katie Pink and White Floral Eyelet Dress: Charabia www.charabia.com
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Chocolate
www.foreaxelandhudson.com
Pulled Sleeve Sweater Top: June Plum Clothing, Village Plaza Kingston White Eyelet Top & Seersucker Skirt: Fore & Birdie www.foreaxelandhudson.com Check Camp Shirt & Brown Solid Linen Shorts: Fore
ISSUE 2022
Dupioni Silk Skirt: Christianna Pink Sweater and Tam: Next
| B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE| 249 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 Ditsy Print Dress: Fore & Birdie www.foreaxelandhudson.com Floral Summer Dresses: Zara www.zara.com
250 | B3 PARENTING MAGAZINE | 10 TH ANNIVERSARY ISSUE 2022 Ditsy Print Dress: Fore & Birdie www.foreaxelandhudson.com Floral Summer Dresses: Zara www.zara.com
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Black Long-Sleeved Turtleneck Blouse: Next Graphic Print Wrap Skirt: Next

Fam•i•ly Va• ca•tion

noun

[fam-uh-lee vey-key-shuhn]

An escape for the entire brood which provides activities for everyone, as well as (ideally) much needed relaxation for adults. To really count, parents should NOT require a second vacation after their return.

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Beaches Turks and Caicos

If you’re looking for the complete Caribbean family escape, look no further than Beaches Turks & Caicos Resort and Spa. You’ll dive right into a one-of-a-kind, unbelievably exciting Beaches all-inclusive family vacation in Providenciales, Turks & Caicos.

A 45,000 square-foot waterpark; three magnificent Villages, boasting the architecture and ambiance of Italy, France and the Caribbean; a 12-mile beach lapped by clear turquoise waters; endless fun activities for everyone, from tots to tweens and teens, featuring Sesame Street® characters, Scratch DJ Academy, the new Xbox 36 0® Play Lounge and a sizzlin' teen disco, Liquid at Beaches - all located on one of the world's best beaches.

The resort’s seamless blend of European charm and Caribbean flair provides guests with every luxury imaginable; the Italian Village features luxury family suites - a magnificent collection of suites with separate kids rooms designed to meet the needs of today’s families. It’s a slice of paradise you can feel at home in - with privacy and tranquility in a layout which just makes sense. You may even request one of the Italian Village’s 18 “Imperial” rooms, which include separate living and dining room areas and feature Beaches Resorts’ exclusive Butler Service.

The new Italian Village’s private checkin area ensures a stress-free start to a Luxury Included® vacation, while gourmet restaurants (16 total, from Italian at Mario’s to Barefoot by the Sea with local seafood delights), and their awe inspiring range of amenities and attractions, keep travelers of all ages well fed, engaged and enchanted.

“Beaches Resorts is expressly designed for the way today’s families live and travel,” said Adam Stewart, CEO of Beaches Resorts. “Getting away to get together is precious time. It’s got to be right,” Stewart added. “From toddlers to teens, parents to grandparents, there was not a single detail in our blueprints that did not take each traveler’s needs into account.”

So does it take everyone into account? It does that, and so much more. Beaches Turks & Caicos exceeds expectations in absolutely every way. It’s also home to a massive 7,000 -sq. ft. retail mecca, featuring a luxury boutique shop, resort and dive shop, art gallery, photoshop and candy store. We mentioned the Xbox 36 0® Play Lounge. Well, If gaming isn’t their thing, teens can chill

out at Trench Town, the hottest, teen-only resort lounge in the Caribbean complete with laser hockey, foosball and more. When it comes time to hit the beach, teens and tweens can explore the high seas aboard Beaches Resorts’ exclusive catamaran, The Kitty Katt.

Look out for Zoe, Super Grover, Big Bird and the whole Sesame Street® gang; they even have great hands-on activities like ‘Baking with Cookie Monster’ and ‘Story Time with Elmo’ as a part of the Beaches Caribbean Adventure with Sesame Street®.

Seen enough? We have. Our bags were packed before we even heard about the exclusive Red Lane® Spa, where classic European spa rituals are infused with the truly distinct essence of the Caribbean.

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Enough activities to keep the family happy?

Check. Wait, seriously, something for EVERY age range? Yes, you heard us. AND there’s Camp Sesame to keep the kids occupied so you can relax and soak up the good life. Beaches Turks & Caicos is a must visit for the ultimate Caribbean family vacation escape.

Visit www.beaches.com for booking, more information and special offers.

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In 1998, Miss Trinidad and Tobago was declared the most beautiful woman in the universe. She won the prestigious title that is bestowed each year on a young woman who shows herself to be (among many things) a perfect balance of beauty, intelligence and charm. The panel of esteemed judges that selects the winner chose that year to crown Wendy Fitzwilliam; a tall and strikingly beautiful black woman from the twin-island republic of Trinidad and Tobago. They selected a confident and headstrong 26-year-old, who would later have an entire nation fall in love with her. They selected a strident young woman who would soon find herself a colleague amongst the lawmakers of her home country and beyond. But most improtantly, that year the judges selected an intensely passionate woman who would eventually become...

Ailan’s Mommy

Photography: Dwayne Watkins

Makeup and Styling: Angelie Spencer

Wardrobe: drennaLUNA

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Theirs is a relationship that speaks volumes. By the time Ailan is ready to read Letters To Ailan (his mother’s first book), he would have already been familiar with, and completely understood its contents. Wendy and Ailan communicate in a manner that was virtually unheard of in a West Indian family just a generation ago. “What do you think of this, Ailan?” Wendy asks of her 9-year-old son. He looks up briefly from his iPad to tell his mom that he thinks her dress looks great. “That colour looks good on you, Mommy,” he manages to say before returning his attention to his tablet. “Ailan’s opinion is important, and he knows that without a doubt, because I genuinely value what he has to say,” Wendy explains. Against the background of a culture long known for raising children to be seen and not heard, Wendy proudly champions a new era of parenting that not only values the opinion of its children, but encourages their participation in day-to-day activities and decision-making.

If it is possible to be both confident and shy at the same time, then Ailan has that down pat. He looks to his mother for a sign of approval before proceeding to respond to my questions. His shyness seems to come from a place that is familiar to most children his age. I call it ‘the age of assurance’, when the twinkle in a mother’s eye is the safety net that a child needs. His quiet confidence then shines through as he handles his short interview with candour and wit.

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AILAN’S 3 WORDS TO DESCRIBE MOMMY WENDY:

“Hmmm, only three? Let’s see,… My mommy is fun, exciting and loving. Yes, she’s very loving!” he replies with a smirk, knowing that he’s just made his mother’s heart smile.

AILAN ON MOMMY’S STYLE OF DISCIPLINE:

“If I leave my stu ff around, she’ll tell me to pick them up. But she doesn’t shout. She stays calm, and I love that about her. “

AILAN ON MISSING MOMMY:

“Whenever she’s home, I always tell her about my day at school. She hears all the details. I tell her all the things I am doing and all the things that happen at school. I miss having her around to play when she has to go away for work. And when she’s gone we Skype a lot.”

AILAN ON WHAT MAKES HIS MOMMY SPECIAL:

“My Mommy is the most exciting person I know. She does a lot of exciting things and she’s not afraid to let me try most of them as well. She allows me to do adventurous things that might scare some other mothers. Just like the other day, Mommy encouraged me to try skiing on the Diamond slopes, while she stayed on the Bunny slopes,” he laughs hysterically!

Ailan is 9 years old, a fact that slipped me during our time together. He speaks of homework and chores as good things and was quick to correct me when I suggested that he might have been trying to ‘show off ’ because his Mommy was close by. “No, I don’t do my homework for Mommy. I do it because if I don’t, I’ll get more work to do at school,” he wisely advises me. I reason with him and recognise pretty early on that his level of maturity far surpasses that of an average 9-yearold boy.

This mother-and-son team make a good pair; especially in the kitchen where Wendy, who detests raw meat, speaks proudly of her son who seasons and prepares the meat ahead of her cooking it. Ailan proudly chimes in “Yes, Mommy needs gloves! I chop and season and get my hands into everything! Mommy doesn’t like that part, but I do!” he beams. “We’re not big chicken eaters”, says Wendy, “but we love beef, lamb and all types of fish, and Ailan makes the best fish stew”. Ailan credits Gordon Ramsay of MasterChef, his Granny and his Mommy as his teachers in the kitchen.

Ailan’s ability to reason and rationalise is not

surprising. It is no accident that this 9-year-old boy cooks like a mini Master Chef, or cleans up dutifully around the house. It’s not happenstance that he opens doors for ladies or offers his seat to his Grams. It’s all a part of a mother’s intention to raise her son right by laying a foundation set in discipline, adventure, structure and love.

In 2009, when Letters to Ailan was originally published, Wendy was a new mother, not yet entirely comfortable in her skin as one solely responsible for another. Like many other women across the Caribbean, she was forced to come to terms with being a single mother while navigating the path of becoming the woman she dreamed of being.

Six years after penning her first book, Wendy Fitzwilliam unknowingly reminds me that wagging tongues are always eventually quieted. With the grace and poise of the queen that she is, Wendy stands tall (literally) and is doing exactly what she made up her mind to do 9 years ago – be the best mother to her son.

For those unfamiliar with this beauty’s story, Wendy’s pregnancy in 2008 for a Jamaican thenpolitician David Panton, became a topic of conversation in many circles; from the west coast of Negril, Jamaica to the most easterly coast of Charlotteville in Tobago. Wendy, Trinidad’s darling, had managed to excite, disappoint, encourage and enrage so many. But her mandate then, and now, was never about pleasing those around her. Her goal instead was to birth and raise a

“AS A PARENT, I WANT TO SET THE BEST EXAMPLE FOR AILAN, BUT I DON’T ALWAYS.”
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healthy, well-rounded and highly functioning child. Her goal was and is, to chart a course for herself and her son that would see her shattering stereotypes; redefining the rules of engagement for her own life, even amidst the scrutiny of so many around her. Here she shares her heart….

Wendy on co-parenting

Maintaining a high level of respect for your partner when a relationship does not work out romantically is often a challenge when co-parenting a child. And when you’re co-parenting bicoastally, it becomes even more challenging. “Ailan’s father David and I are beyond the di cult parts of any disrupted relationship. I am very comfortable with where we are and we remain resolute in protecting Ailan from all the elements that come with our adult lives. Ailan is very much aware of both of his parents; our strengths and our shortcomings. He’s a bright child, but more than that is the fact that I do not lie to him. You know with children, you don’t have to tell them everything…they figure things out for themselves.”

“As a parent, I want to set the best example for Ailan, but I don’t always. When that happens, I talk things through with him. First, I apologise to him, which in turn helps him to understand which behaviours are and are not socially acceptable. I find this has also taught Ailan when and how to apologise.”

We segued easily into the topic of men who for generations have had di fferent degrees of di culty in expressing emotion. We

“WE NEED TO PUT OUR BEST EFFORT INTO RAISING MEN AND WOMEN WE’D BE PROUD TO HAVE OUR OWN CHILDREN MARRY IN THE LONG RUN. ”

agreed that we can’t tell our little boys not to cry all through their toddler and youth years, and then suddenly expect emotions to flow on-demand when they become adults. The responsibility to raise balanced, emotionally-stable men rests with the mothers of little boys who will one day have need to engage emotionally.

Wendy on parenting success

“As single mothers, we work three times as hard to disprove society’s notion that we are failing our children because they are not a part of a nuclear family.

We work dogmatically everyday being mothers to our children and we still have to deal with our own wants and desires to be in a healthy relationship.”

Wendy is raising Ailan to be a wholesome and functional half of a healthy relationship. “I love being Ailan’s mother, and I love being in a healthy relationship too. But if it’s not healthy…in any relationship, once your sense of self and self-worth is compromised, or once you start to doubt yourself and your decisions… that’s not the right relationship for you. Now don’t get me wrong. I know that I am flawed. I am the product of a broken home. But that does not make me a broken person. I recognised very early on that though my father was not the best husband to my mother, he was the best father to my sister and me.” For Wendy, the idea that the two roles (i.e. being a good husband and being a good father) are inextricably linked, comes from a place of respect, and not a place of romance.

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And it is that mutual respect that Wendy has for David, and vice versa, that helps them achieve parenting success along the way.

What else makes for parenting success? “A happy child who knows he is loved.” In Ailan’s life, happiness has many sources. He is blessed with a family that loves him immeasurably, and has no qualms in expressing that love. Hugs and kisses from Grandpa, Nana and Aunty Dee are an everyday part of life. With roots in Jamaica as well, Ailan maintains strong family connections with his brother Alex and other members of his father’s family. And if you leave the Caribbean and journey from New York to L.A. to Dubai, you’ll find friends who are family, who also comprise the large village

that plays a role in raising and loving Ailan. These are friends and family members across the globe who, regardless of their personal a liation to either David or Wendy, look out for Ailan. Being able to look past any personal issues and see the bigger picture is a critical factor in raising any child who happens to be at the centre of non-traditional parenting practices. (And this doesn’t only apply to the mother and father.) Wendy chimes in laughing, “I am quite sure there were times in the past when David’s sister didn’t necessarily want to hang with me, but she lives in New York, which is a hub for me and my work, and once Ailan is traveling with me, Melanie (David’s sister) always makes it a point of duty to see her nephew. “

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“NOW DON’T GET ME WRONG. I KNOW THAT I AM FLAWED. I AM THE PRODUCT OF A BROKEN HOME. BUT THAT DOES NOT MAKE ME A BROKEN PERSON.”

Wendy on building foundations

Ailan is learning from a very early age that navigating relationships takes effort, love and patience – a good foundation to have. We further analyse our roles as mothers and look at the tools we have available to us to help mitigate our sons becoming dysfunctional. “I believe that we have to get to a place where fathers too accept and engage their role as nurturer and not just as provider. Children learn best from the examples they see, we all know this. It’s how you relate to them, to their mother…. all these things form a part of their belief system and core values. It would be unreasonable of any parent to think

that we can drink and smoke and party and carouse, and then expect our child not to do the same. They will love us, no doubt, but chances are high that they will repeat what we do.”

“For me, I am extremely impatient; I have terrible OCD and, sadly, I flip out every once in a while. I have the ability to ‘dress down’ and emasculate, and though I am ashamed to say I have done so, I have also taken the steps to repair that action by firstly apologising to Ailan and letting him know that what I did was not acceptable. I talk to Ailan a lot, so he understands for the most part the reasons behind my actions. When I am wrong, I don’t try to justify what I

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did, but I do try to explain the why’s behind what I may have done. I don’t like the word ‘NO’, so I find that explaining the why or what or who in a situation often instigates riveting conversations that would otherwise never have happened.”

I love the honesty and candidness of this young woman, whose religious upbringing is shrouded in modesty and simplicity. Wendy is real, and being real for her is bolstered, not hindered, by her faith.

Wendy on Ailan’s Dad

“David as daddy to Ailan is outstanding”, Wendy continues. “He tries to be always present as a parent; if not physically, then emotionally and mentally. He is keenly aware of his responsibility as a father, and visits Ailan at least once per month. Every month. These are visits that Ailan looks

forward to, and these are also visits that he needs. And in between visits, their conversations are countless. Ailan loves the sound of his father’s voice – ever since he was in-utero, David’s voice excited him. Their bond is a special one that is rooted in love.”

Wendy on mothering

“I am so determined NOT to be the typical West Indian mother who becomes the monster-mother-in-law, parenting and protecting her son well into the afterlife.”

Wendy laughs a deep and almost serious laugh, if there were ever such a thing.

“I should not be mothering Ailan now at 9 the same way I did when he was 9-monthsold. And I certainly cannot mother him at 19 in the way that I mother him today. I think typically, as mothers in the Caribbean,

we have done an amazing job with our girls; for the most part, they are self-su cient and confident. But I believe that we have failed our boys. We have stunted them emotionally, while encouraging them physically and professionally. The same rules that apply to girls who must clean up their rooms, wash up after themselves and cry when it hurts; these rules must also apply to our boys.”

Wendy on being a daughter

“I think my Daddy set me up”, Wendy laughs as she recounts her relationship with her father. “My father treated my sister Dee and me as though we were princesses. There was and still is nothing that my father wouldn’t do for us. He set the benchmark so incredibly high while being there for us as father and friend. My father told me that I could be anything I wanted to be; whether I chose to be an astronaut or a

fashionable lawyer was up to no one but me. And as naughty as my Daddy was in his relationship with my mother, he taught me to be self-su cient and told me not to put up with ‘foolishness’ from any man.” Clearly a dichotomy of sorts in our region, where the antagonist of potentially hurtful behaviour in a relationship is also the protector of a daughter or sibling on the receiving end of similar behaviour.

Wendy on something to believe in

I asked, “How do we as mothers fix this?”

“Ultimately, we’re raising the husbands and wives of tomorrow. So we need to put our best effort into raising men and women

we’d be proud to have our own children marry in the long run. Don’t get me wrong, life is not perfect, but both my mother and my father did an amazing job in grounding

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my sister and me. We’re respectful and truthful and our faith in God is unshakeable. There was a time when I was younger when I used to hide my faith, because it wasn’t ‘cool’. But as I grew and my experiences changed, I developed a true relationship with God. I talk to Him and turn to

Him first; not just when I need help, but regularly, as in everyday. We talk. And there I find peace and solace, especially in di cult periods in my life. This is something that I cherish and I impart to my son, because a relationship with God, based on faith – is everything!

Wendy on love lessons

“I take my cues from Ailan, and from God. There is no handbook on parenting, but I do know that my son knows love. We have many amazing examples of love in our lives in so many di fferent forms.” Wendy speaks of having friends who provide Ailan with the reality of what healthy relationships and healthy marriages should look like. She speaks of both her male and female friends from di fferent spheres of life who demonstrate love in their relationships, whether platonic or not; heterosexual or homosexual. These are friends who, by virtue of the circumstances in their lives, all show how to love. Love is a verb, and Ailan has seen the power of love unite people, even within the context of his own family – with Wendy’s parents who, though no longer together, have united in love as they share in the responsibility of caring for their grandson.

“I also have a lot of friends who are gay, and Ailan has questioned that lifestyle. Though I don’t over-share, I am very honest with my son. I firmly believe that because I do have friends who are gay – amazing human beings – I have a responsibility to Ailan to ensure that he is able to understand and rationalise what that means. One friend in particular – an amazing friend to me, and an amazing example of a man (who just happens to be gay) – has really helped me to recognise that the true mettle of a man lies in his ability to connect with and relate to people from a place of love. Your sexuality is only one aspect of who you are, and it certainly does not define you. It doesn’t make you less of or more of a human being.”

“MY MEASURE OF SUCCESS IS EACH AND EVERY DAY THAT AILAN AND I ARE BOTH HEALTHY AND HAPPY.”
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Wendy on dating again

“I have dated, but I have not dated anyone seriously enough to consider introducing him to Ailan in that regard. I am extremely careful because I am aware of the effects that my dating can have on my son. I won’t introduce a boyfriend to Ailan unless it’s very serious. Again, this all comes down to what we as parents want to emulate. I don’t think Ailan needs to see his mother going through the highs and ‘lust’ phase of a new relationship, to then have it end in heartbreak. While

there are no guarantees, this is a decision I have made to protect my child from something he doesn’t need to see. When I am comfortable and confident of longevity in a relationship, then I will think about that next phase of introducing Ailan. I absolutely want a steady and long-term relationship for me, and I hope that when that does happen, Ailan will understand the basis of the decisions I make today. When he is older, fine. But at this stage of his life, no – that exposure is unnecessary.”

Wendy on more children

“I am in my 40’s, a time I call ‘The Wonder Years’. You’re so much surer of yourself when you’re in your 40’s than at any other time in your life. I no longer put pressure on myself for more children. I am honestly in love with my life as it is, and though I would want a partner for me, he has to be the right fit for me and for Ailan. If it happens then it happens, and I’d be fine with that. If not, that’s fine too.”

What’s next for Wendy?

“I am greedy professionally. (Laughs). I want it all. I went to law school and I have pursued my passion for the arts. But when I worked with the State, I loved and hated it with equal measure. I now know that I will never be happy in entertainment alone, nor will I be happy only in a professional corporate setting. I continue to do both and I have no desire to return to either environment only. My work as a consultant is global (Wendy is currently consulting in Tanzania) and it gives me the freedom to work on projects that I thoroughly enjoy, to set personal and professional objectives, and also to be super-mom at the same time!”

From the outside looking in I see Wendy happy and secure in the now of her life. And from the inside looking out, Wendy continues to march to the beat of her own drum. For a fleeting moment I recall the words of Machel Montano’s “Happiest Man Alive” where he starts out saying that “happiness is the measure of success”. I compliment Wendy on being steadfast as she checks the marks on her ladder of success.

“I do not have a measure of success in terms of dollars. Money for me is a means to an end; it’s more about what the money can do, than about what I can do to make the money. My goals are about what I can do with and for my son while I enjoy living my life. My measure of success is each and every day that Ailan and I are both healthy and happy.”

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Pizza, A Busy Mom’s Best Friend

Let’s face it, motherhood is difficult, and creating a healthy balance between work life, family life, and the neverending laundry list of responsibilities mothers carry is next to impossible. As a #BossMom, your time is torn between board meetings, homework, special projects, extracurricular activities, home errands, balance sheets, and so much more. No matter how efficient and on-theball you may be, every super mom needs a little breather and a helping hand occasionally, and who doesn’t love Pizza?

Whether it’s for a birthday party, social gathering, or just a family Friday movie night at home, Pizza Hut Pizza provides the perfect range of delicious flavours and options to satisfy even the pickiest of eaters - without the hassle of creating multiple meals.

Many moms will agree – Pizza Hut pizza is the perfect tasty treat to solve a variety of group meal needs.

For Tina Myers Matalon, Director of Marketing for Restaurants of Jamaica (ROJ), the local operators of Pizza Hut, some of her fondest childhood memories of special celebrations included pizza, and she believes that fact has not changed for most families.

“The life of a modern #BossMom is di cult. As someone who has to balance the rigours of my role at ROJ with my home life and motherhood, I completely

understand the need to take a break sometimes. Pizza is the easiest option when you just want to pick up your phone and order something delicious and convenient that your children will love. The great thing about pizza is that you can mix and match toppings so everyone can get what they want. At our Pizza Hut locations in Jamaica we give customers the option to combine several flavours with our ‘Amazing 4’ deal that comes with a family-sized 2 litre drink, so no one is ever left out.”

So, the next time you are looking for an easy meal for the family after a long day being a #BossMom, pick up your phone, call 876-755-4HUT (4488), and order a Pizza Hut pizza, because Pizza is a mom’s best friend.

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Dear Doc, I’m a coffee drinker. However with my pregnancy now, I’ve managed to eliminate coffee totally, thinking that Teas would be a good replacement. But they seem to contain just as much caffeine. Any suggestions?

Ca ffeine intake during pregnancy can be potentially harmful for your growing baby and has been reported to be associated with several adverse pregnancy outcomes, including early pregnancy loss, preterm birth, and impaired fetal growth. Coffee, tea, cocoa and some carbonated soft drinks are the main sources of ca ffeine intake. It is recommended that pregnant women limit ca ffeine consumption to less than 200 to 300 mg per day to potentially reduce their risk of possible adverse reproductive effects. Coffee contains 50 to 70 percent more ca ffeine than tea and other products. As a guide one cup of coffee contains approximately 100mg-200mg of ca ffeine depending on how it is prepared e.g. Instant versus brewed. Green tea (6 oz) contains approximately 40 mg and Black tea (6 oz) 45 mg. Avoiding ca ffeine as much as possible is however the safest option.

I think this magazine is great, and your column is very informative. I wish I’d had this with my first 2 pregnancies. On my third now, and I’m very curious about cord blood banking in Jamaica. Is it available here or anywhere in the Caribbean?

Firstly I would like to thank you for highly rating this extraordinary magazine. Cord blood banking is relatively new to the Caribbean and unfortunately at this time there are no cord blood banks available within the Caribbean region. However, cord blood can be taken at the time of delivery here in Jamaica and sent to a cord blood bank overseas. This is accommodated by your Obstertrician and Gynacologist who will contact the cord blood bank of your choice who will then send a special kit and instructions to collect the cord blood. Once collected it would be sent immediately via a courier service to the bank.

Two main types of cord blood banks exist, public cord banks and private cord banks. In addition to these two main types of cord blood banks, some private and public cord blood banks provide a service called directed cord blood banking in which cord blood is reserved for a sibling or family member with a known potentially transplant-treatable disease.

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D r. ea-Nicole Davis is our Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist who answer s your questions and address es your concerns on medical matters pertaining to bumps, babie s and beyond. Dr. Davis is mother to 3 yr old Imani. She is an avid reader who, like all our contributing writers, has a passion for children and parenting. Dr. Davis lives in Mandeville, and practices in both Kingston and Mandeville, Jamaica.

I recommend that you contact the Cord Blood Registry at www.cordblood. com. You can also see a listing of other collecting units worldwide at www. bmdw.org.

The day I entered my final trimester my skin changed. My underarms, neck, and bottom are blotchy and about 5 shades darker. I feel unattractive and miserable. Please tell me this will pass soon, and is there anything that’s safe to use now, that will help.

Most pregnant women develop some degree of increased skin pigmentation (colour) that usually resolves after pregnancy. The cause of this increased pigmentation is reported to be hormonally related. Common areas include the nipples, underarms, genitalia, buttocks, inner thighs and the neck. The good news is that for the majority, post delivery, these areas become less pigmented over a period of several months. Unfortunately, this condition is not deemed treatable during pregnancy as it is self-limiting. To minimise the pigmentation in the mean time I recommend that you use a sunblock daily that protects against both UVA and UVB rays with SPF 30 or higher and limit exposure to the sun. After pregnancy and breastfeeding if your skin remains significantly discoloured without any signs of improvement then consult with a dermatologist who may recommend the use of topical skin lightening agents, glycolic peels or laser treatments. Please remember however that these changes will not occur over night and patience is the best remedy for this condition.

Apart from my prescribed pre-natal vitamin and folic acid, I’m also taking Vitamins B, E and Cod Liver Oil. Am I overdoing it?

Supplementation of your diet with prenatal vitamins is indeed essential for not just your general health but also for your developing baby and the placenta. At a minimum, the daily multivitamin-mineral supplement you take should contain key vitamins/minerals that are often not met by diet alone, such as: iron, calcium and folate. In addition to these, pregnant women also require adequate amounts of vitamins A, B complex, E, C D, and zinc. Most commercial “pre-natal” vitamins already contain all these essential vitamins/minerals in their required amounts therefore additional vitamins/ minerals are not necessary. Some vitamins can be potentially harmful when taken in large quantities.

These include, but are not limited to iron, selenium, vitamins A and D.

WANT TO STOP FINGER-SUCKING?

1.Give your child a good reason to stop. “Let’s try to stop before school starts”, as opposed to “ You better stop sucking that dirty finger before everybody laughs at you!”

2.Anticipate. Prepare. Plan. Get to know when your child will suck his finger. Does it happen when he’s tired or hungry or sad? What are the triggers? Once you’re aware of the signs, you can offer a practical alternative before the finger-sucking starts.

Help your child to recognize when, and perhaps why he is sucking his finger. Discuss alternative ‘comfort-habits’, and try implementing them on a slow and steady

4.Do not pressure your child. Take your time, and let him take his. Just be sure to remain consistent. And let him know that you’re there to help him, no matter what.

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Jo-Anne
Francine Bryce
S
A modern perspective with traditional values. Stephens www.bransens.com
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