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Things I Wish I Knew Before Becoming A Father A Caribbean Childhood A Photo Journey by Adrian McDonald .

Ailan’s

Baby Babble Radio B3 Momtrepreneur Samantha John

Mommy Trinidad & Tobago's Wendy Fitzwilliam is living life out loud and completely in love.

Summer Issue 2015 • Vol.2 Issue 1

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- Antonette (26) and Shanett Bromfield (27) * Graduates, University of Technology (UTech)


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11- -888888- -BBEEAACCHHEESS BBEEAACCHHEESS. C . COOM M OORRCCAALLLLYYOOUURRTTRRAV AVEELLAAGGEENNTT TTUURRKKSS&&CCAAI C I COOSS • • J JAAMMAAI C I CAA A◆Beautiful A Beautiful Beginnings Beginnings wedding wedding is free is free with with stays stays of of 3 paid 3 paid nights nights or or more more in in allall room room categories. categories. AllAll weddings weddings areare subject subject to to mandatory mandatory marriage marriage officiant officiant and and government government documentation documentation fees, fees, which which vary vary byby island. island. ® ® ® ® AllAll fees fees subject subject to to change change at at any any time time without without prior prior notice. notice. Sandals Sandals and and Beaches Beaches areare registered registered trademarks. trademarks. Unique Unique Vacations, Vacations, Inc. Inc. is the is the affiliate affiliate of of thethe worldwide worldwide representative representative of of Sandals Sandals and and Beaches Beaches Resorts. Resorts.


SUMMER ISSUE 2015

BUMP 14 5 THINGS I WISH I KNEW BEFORE BECOMING A FATHER A Father's Advice on What's Really Important .

18 ADVERTIORIAL: CALLING THE SHOTS Photography For Your Family’s Needs

20 B3 MD Our Resident Ob Gyn Answers Your Questions

21 COMFORT CAM Keeping Your Baby In View – Always

46

22 MOMMY, WHERE DO BABIES COME FROM? The Question Every Child Will Ask

COVER STORY

BABY

Ailan’s

26 HEY DOLL - Dumye Dolls One Woman's Craft Creates Change

Mommy

30 BEABA

Mealtime Magic For Baby

Trinidad & Tobago's Wendy Fitzwilliam is living life out loud and completely in love. SUMMER ISSUE 2015

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SUMMER ISSUE 2015

14 80

Things Things I Wish I Wish I Knew I Knew Before Becomin Becoming Before Thinggs A Father A Father Th I Th Wis ing h sings I Kne I WiIw Wish sh Before Beco I ew Knew Kn ming BeforIean Before Caribb eom Beer AACaribbean Bec A com Fath ing ing Childho od A Childhood A Fa Fatherther PhotoJourney Journeyby by AAPhoto Adrian McDona A Car ld McDonald Adrian ibbean A Ca AChi Caldh ribrib bean ood be an Child A Phot Ch o Jour ildney A Ph hoho by od od oto A Phoan Baby Adri Jo toMcD uryney by Babble Baby rne onal riaJou d by AdrAd nRadio Mc ian Do Mc Don nald ald B3 Momtrep reneur B3 Momtrepreneur Samanth Bab a John y Bab John Samantha Ba ble Babyby Ba Ba bb Rad bb le io le B3 Momtrepr Ra Ra di eneu Momtrep dio ro B3B3 Mo Sam renureur anth epraene Samtr ma Sam nthaJohn ant Jonhn ha Joh .

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Issue 2015 • Vol.2 Issue 1 Summer Issue 2015 • Vol.2 Issue 1 Summ er Issue 2015 • Summe r Vol.2 Issue Issue 2015 • Vol.2 Issue 1 1

Summer Issue 2015 • Vol.2 Issue 1

J$70

0 • EC$ 22 • US$ 8 • £5 . J$700 • EC$22 • US$8 • £5 J$70 0 • EC$2 TH 2 • US$8 J$700 E CA • EC$22 • £5 US$8 RIB•BE • £5

AN 'S PRAN'S THE CARIBBE £5 EM• IER • EC$22 • US$8 J$700 PREMIER PARENT THE CA PA RE ING MAGAZI NE • RIB BEA WWW.B 3CARIBB NT IN THE CAR EANMAG AZINE.C N'S G MA IBBE PRE AN'S OM GA ZIN MIEMIER PRE R PAR MAGAZINE • WWW.B3CARIBBEAN MAGAZINE.COM E • WW PARENTING PREMIER ENT ENT THE CARIBBEAN'S PAR INGING MAMAG AZIN E • W. B3 CA GA ZIN WW W.BRIB E • WW RIBB W.B 3CA3CABE AN EAN MAG RIB BEA MA AZIN GA NM AG ZIN E.C E.CO M AZ INE OM .CO M

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ON THE COVER Cover : Wendy Fitzwilliam and her 9-year-old son Ailan Wardrobe : drennaLUNA (Wendy), Fore Axel & Hudson (Ailan) Photography: Dwayne Watkins Shot in Studio: Kingston, Jamaica

32 THESE SHOES WERE MADE FOR WALKING

68 A SPA PARTY

A Look At 3 Manufacturing Moms

34 PARENTING THE RIGHT WAY

72 EMPOWERING A CHILD WHO STUTTERS

Nestum Advertorial

A Parent's Guide to Clear Communication

36 BLISSFUL PARENTING

76 B3 MOMTREPRENEUR SAMANTHA JOHN

Helpful Parenting Advice

40 HARBOUR VIEW A New Mom's Perspective on Motherhood

42 FIRST AID IN THE HOME Quick Tips For Medical Emergencies

BEYOND Design by Oopsy Daisy Wall Art Haircare Tips 08 | BUMP • BABY & BEYOND b3 |

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80 FRUITY SUMMER SNACK IDEAS Fresh and Fun For Kids

82 A CARIBBEAN CHILDHOOD A Photo Journey by Adrian McDonald

90 AUTISM

64 SUMMER STYLING 66 CURLY, WAVY, COILY

Celebrating in Style

82

The Ultra Marathon A Mother's Shares Her Story

92 AUTISM RED FLAGS Signs To Look For In Your Child

WWW.B3CARIBBEANMAGAZINE.COM

SUMMER 2015


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Editor's Note

I

’ve learned that one of the greatest challenges in parenting is recognizing and accepting the differences between the kinds of parents we want to be and the kind of parents that we actually are. We all have dreams, some more elaborate than others, but all reflect a level of perfection that we hope to attain at some point or the other. Where we are today is the ‘here’ of our lives, and where we want to be is the ‘there’ of our dreams. It’s in between ‘the here’ and ‘the there’; our journey as individuals and parents, that we find the most important part. This is the part where we mold our children’s present to build the foundation for their tomorrow. In this issue, we get a peek into the lives of some of our mothers who, through their day-to-day activities, are building foundations for tomorrow. It doesn’t matter whether you are married, single or in-between, these mothers are playing with the deck of cards they’ve been dealt. Wendy Fitzwilliam, our cover story mom, offers insight to her journey as her career blossoms and she lives her dreams. You can read her story starting on page 46. So too for our Momtrepreneurs from Kingston to New York and Dubai. We’re living our lives on purpose, and our children are benefitting from seeing our dedication to hard work and the pursuit of happiness. With two children at different ages and stages of their development, I am challenged to occupy my son and daughter with collective activities that won’t break the bank, or my sanity. So, on the advice of a colleague, this summer we’re hitting the road in pursuit of fun and knowledge. Every island in the Caribbean is rich in history, and I’m excited to teach my children about the people and places that have made our region stand out on the world map. We’ll be touring our beautiful island by visiting the pages of the books that they study in school while making some great memories along the way. I extend a special thank you to our friends at Subaru Jamaica, who will help us to experience our family summer island tour in the safety and comfort of the Forester - a great family car. Look our for us on the road and join in the fun journey as we explore Jamaica from coast to coast and be sure to follow us on Instagram @b3caribbeanmagazine. .

Summer fun awaits, enjoy the ride! Editor-in-Chief

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Best.

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


Boy O Boy Limited PUBLISHER Michelle Gordon EDITOR-IN-CHIEF & CREATIVE DIRECTOR

Dwayne Watkins PHOTOGRAPHY DIRECTOR

Dwayne Jureidini ART DIRECTOR & LAYOUT ARTIST

Kimberley Dunkley SPECIAL PROJECTS COORDINATOR

Angelie Spencer FASHION EDITOR & STYLIST

Norma Williams CREATIVE CONSULTANT

Arlene L. Martin ASSISTANT EDITOR

Chelsea Taylor EDITOR'S ASSISTANT

• .

Contributing Writers Christy Almeida, David ‘Coppa Stone’ Kennedy, Elena Diedrick-Lynch, Gayle Cunningham, Poe Han Thar Kyaw, Sara Conner, Selena Syke, Tawana Johnson

Copy Editor Danielle Leyow

Contributing Photographers: Adrian McDonald, Janette Meggs, Riacrdo Lewis, WKL Media (Trinidad & Tobago)

Special thanks to Judith Denton (KIG Jamaica)

Advertising Sales Jamaica and the Caribbean advertising@b3caribbeanmagazine.com Canada and the United States Leeanne Bayley-Hay b3magazineadvertising@gmail.com

Digital Newsstands www.issuu.com and www.ezinesreader.com

Copyright © 2014 Boy O Boy Limited. All rights reserved. This material may not be reproduced, displayed, modified or distributed without the express prior written permission of Boy O Boy Ltd. For permission, please contact myboyoboy@gmail.com

Email: info@dwaynewatkins.com Follow us on Twitter and Instagram: @TeamDWP


5 Bump

Things I Wish I Knew

.

Before Becoming Father of a Baby Girl By David “Coppa Stone” Kennedy

“ONCE UPON A TIME, NOT LONG AGO, WHEN PEOPLE WORE PAJAMAS AND LIVED LIFE SLOW…”

W

- Slick Rick, 1989

ay back in 1995, a California rapper by the name of Skee-Lo released a single entitled “I Wish.” In his single, Skee-Lo wished that he was both taller and a baller. But as for me, (if and when I ever buck up on that genie in the bottle), I really just wished I knew a few things before I became the father of a baby girl six years ago. Kids definitely don’t come with an instructional manual (despite what you may or may not have heard) and there definitely isn’t any one single book that can completely prepare you for all that parenthood brings. But all of you expecting-fathers-to-be consider yourself lucky, because what I’m about to share with you is more precious than silver and gold.

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5.

I WISH I KNEW HOW MUCH KIDS REALLY COST. A kid is to money as Captain

Hook is to Jake’s Gold doubloons. Art supplies, school fees, ballet, toys and more toys, clothing, and books for her means less gold doubloons for you. In other words, save money from now so that money can save you later.

4.

I WISH I KNEW HOW MUCH ‘STUFF’ KIDS REALLY TRAVEL WITH. It never ceases to amaze me how

many things I can unload from the car on a daily basis, or better yet, how much you need to pack whenever travelling overseas. More often its like Mary Poppins’ bag; nuff tings bredren. In other words, start that workout plan from now, because dem suitcase deh well heavy, star.

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frequently come with a free face rub (which could mean rubbing your face with their hands, or rubbing your face with their own face; either is fair game). In other words, whenever given the chance to invade personal spaces, invade often and invade plenty. You might as well enjoy it, because it won’t last forever (or so I’m told). I wouldn’t know, because right now, 6 years in, I’m still knee-deep in face rubs.

1.

I WISH I KNEW THAT “LIFE” IS NOT “WHAT HAPPENS WHILE YOU’RE MAKING PLANS.” It’s actually children that happen

while you’re making plans. Bathroom breaks in the middle of nowhere on a highway, spilled juice on their uniform right before going to school trus’ me, my yute, the struggle is real. Whatever it is your child does, 9 out of 10 times it will be at the most inconvenient time. Once you accept this, everything else will come easy. In other words, always expect the unexpected.

3.

I WISH I KNEW MY “REAL BAD MAN” CARD WOULD BE REVOKED.

Before becoming the father of a baby girl, like Vybz Kartel on the Mad Instruments Riddim, you might have been “a gangsta before bell foot pants a wear”, but once she starts combing your hair, putting in clips, painting your nails, and having pretend tea parties, all while singing “let it go, let it go, I can’t hold it back any more”, a gangsta you will be no more. In other words, don’t ever take yourself too seriously, just have fun and enjoy the moment.

2.

I WISH I KNEW MY PERSONAL SPACE WOULD BE NO MORE. Children are natural-born personal space invaders. There is definitely no such thing as “too close”, and conversations

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eing the father of a baby girl means having multiple res ponsibilities and fulfilling multiple roles: caretaker, driver, chef, hairdresser, pretend hair salon client, and the all-time favourite, occasional tea party guest. And yes, it is the hardest job you’ll ever have but despite 5. being broke, 4. sore from lifting suitcases, 3. dressed up in compromising hair styles while drinking pretend tea, 2. without personal space, and 1. being habitually late for everything, being a father is still hands down the most rewarding job you’ll ever have, and it’s worth every challenge. During the day David plays the role of mild-mannered postgraduate student & non-profit programme director, but at night he transforms into Coppa Stone, his alter ego, a Hip Hop & Reggae music artist. He holds both a master’s degree in Education from the University of Denver, and a bachelor’s degree in Public Relations & History from the University of Florida. He is currently residing back home in Kingston, Jamaica with his wife and their 6-year-old daughter who is soon to be a big sister.

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A DV E R TO R I A L

Calling The Shots

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ife changes so quickly. Pregnancy lasts but a few months, and then babies become toddlers in no time at all. Before you know if, your little one is off to make their mark on the world, so be sure to capture all the precious moments at each important stage along the way. Be sure to capture all the precious moments at each important stage along the way. Preserve the intimacy of your pregnancy, the purity and serenity of your baby’s newborn shoot, the life and vibrancy of celebrating your child’s birthday, and the timelessness of creating family memories. All this and so much more fall within the mandate of Calling The Shots Photography. Owned and operated by Momtrepreneur Janette Meggs, Child and Pregnancy Photographer, she offers sessions both in-studio or on-location. Calling The Shots also offers commercial photography ranging from product, food, real estate and executive profile shots. Janette’s work has been featured in several magazines, and she also offers photography workshops to children and teens. .

Visit Calling The Shots at www.callingtheshots-jamaica.com or call 876-868-3131

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Bump

by Dr. Thea-Nicole Davis MBBS, DM (OB-GYN), Jamaica Dr. Thea-Nicole Davis is our Consultant Obstetrician and Gynecologist who answers your questions and addresses your concerns on medical matters pertaining to bumps, babies and beyond. Dr. Davis is mother to 6-year-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. Send your questions to theandavis@hotmail.com

the time. You are now at the end of your first trimester and entering what we call the “Happy Trimester” where you most likely will begin to feel yourself again with a burst of energy. However beware you will most likely begin to feel tired again in your last trimester especially the last four weeks. This is as a result of the extra weight from the baby you will be carrying, trouble sleeping, more frequent visits to the bathroom to urinate at nights and not to mention the contribution of the final leg of the “pregnancy emotional roller coaster”. Proper nutrition, exercise, at least 8 hours of sleep and ensuring your antenatal supplements are essential for overcoming fatigue during pregnancy. Fatigue can become worse, if you are not getting the proper nutrients and rest that are needed for your growing baby. Although you may feel like you do not have the energy to exercise, if you incorporate moderate activity, such as a 20 minute walk daily, this will make you feel more energized. Exercise is beneficial overall in pregnancy, unless medically contraindicated. Please consult with your physician before incorporating exercise to your daily routine.

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I pass a lot of gas. Please help me. It’s embarrassing.

I’m 15 weeks pregnant, and always exhausted. I know this is part of pregnancy, but is there anything natural that I can do to get more energy?

Feeling more tired than usual to “exhaustion” is a natural symptom of pregnancy and is most commonly experienced in the first and third trimesters. In the first trimester your body undergoes numerous changes for you to adequately support your growing baby. Your body's metabolism has increased significantly while your blood sugar and blood pressure tend to be lower resulting in feeling tired easily. Also to blame are the increased hormones, especially progesterone which are responsible for making you more tired and possibly sleepy all

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First let me reassure you that you are not the only pregnant woman to have this complaint, in fact it is probably one of the most common pregnancy symptoms. The major culprit to be blamed for these embarrassing moments is the hormone progesterone. Progesterone slows the digestion process resulting in more time for gas to be produced and has muscle-relaxing properties which leaves you less able to control the passing of gas. This gas can also lead to a feeling of bloating, especially after a large meal and is most commonly experienced in the first trimester. You can reduce the effects of bloating and gas by avoiding foods that tend to make you flatulent such as fried fatty foods, whole grains, lentils and beans, cauliflower, broccoli, asparagus and cabbage and carbonated beverages. Also avoid anything sweetened with sorbitol, an artificial sweeteners and chewing gum. Eating smaller, more frequent meals will also reduce bloating and gas production and regular exercise can stimulate the digestive system speeding up your bowel. And if all else fails, you can simply hold a straight face without the guilty look..

SUMMER 2015


ComfortCam

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ComfortCam is a wifi-enabled baby monitor that works with an app on your smart phone. The service is free if you use over wifi in your home, and if you want Remote Viewing Access from anywhere in the world, it’s under $10/mo. with one free trial month. ComfortCam also connects via LTE, 4G, or 3G while you are on the go.  

T

his baby monitor comes fully loaded with night vision, so there’s no need to disturb baby by switching on the lights. The 2-way audio system gives Mom and Dad a chance to say goodnight or even sing a song if they’re not able to be there in person. Video & still picture-capture can record precious moments that you could potentially miss. And with storage on your device and not on a Cloud, it’s much more secured. The split screen monitor can accommodate up to 4 cams on the same screen and if you wish to take a closer look at your baby while you’re not at home, ComfortCam’s Pan/Tilt/Zoom feature allows you to scan the room to watch your child with 350 degree horizontal views and 120 degree vertical views. Throw in the digital clock and motion detection alerts and you have a new mother’s dream for both peace of mind, and ease on the pocket! The monitor, which retails for $149, is extremely easy to set up right out of the box - perfect for sleepdeprived parents!

SUMMER 2015

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By Gayle Cunningham

There I was sitting on my bed engrossed in my phone. I think I was playing Pet Rescue Saga. (I know, I know, very adult of me.) And out of nowhere, breaking into the gaming fog, this lovely question flittered through; the one that most parents are totally unprepared for and basically dread: “Mummy, where do babies come from?”

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I

slowly put my phone down and looked up and found myself looking into the large-eyed innocence of my sweet baby girl, who barely stands as tall as my bed. “I beg your pardon?” I offered feebly, coughing a little. I also asked “Uhmmm, what did you say?” And my girl of just five asked again, slowly enunciating the words. “Mummy, where do babies come from?” So my brain is working fast now, trying to decide if I should flee into the bathroom and hide out there until Daddy comes home (or maybe until she turns 21), or if I should try to answer this question all by myself. Or maybe I should just scream. Yes… that should distract her. Taking a deep breath, I decided to investigate where the question was coming from. Yes, I was using a distraction technique, but I also needed to know how detailed I would need to go. I quickly rattled off some questions: “Sweet pea, why are you asking? What have you been watching? Who have you been talking to?”

SUMMER 2015

It turns out the mummy of her friend at school was having a baby and she wondered how the baby got into the belly to begin with. Oh boy. Wouldn’t it be great if I could reach for “the-stork-left-a-present-behind” story? I had started this conversation with my older daughter a while back, but she ran away with her hands over her ears, shouting “I am too young to hear that, Mummy!!! Stop it.” So suffice it to say, I was justifiably nervous about not giving too much information. Taking into account that I was dealing with a five year old whose attention span is limited, I opted to be as vague as possible. I told her that when Mommies and Daddies love each other, they hug and God blesses them with a baby, which grows in the Mommy’s tummy. (Come on, she is five!) I held my breath and prayed that she wouldn’t ask anything else and, bless her young heart, she looked at me and tilted her head as if thinking about it and said “oh! Makes sense”, and skipped off.

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"ANYONE WITH A CHILD KNOWS THAT A CLOSED BATHROOM DOOR IS AN OPEN INVITATION TO BARGE IN AND ASK QUESTIONS."

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hew. Even though she knew what the anatomically correct names for the genitals were, I didn’t think I was ready to tell her about what Daddy did with his, or for that matter if she would be able to understand that. I figured I would leave that for the next time the question crossed her mind, and bet your bottom dollar it would come again. I wonder if I will be as freaked out. Probably. Anyone with a child knows that a closed bathroom door is an open invitation to barge in and ask questions. Here is a fun convo with my 5-year-old: .

Mummy why do you have hair there and I don’t? Honey, as you get older you will grow hair just like me, and under your arms and your legs, and your brother will grow hair on his chin.

Mummy what is sex?

‘Cough, cough.’ Sex is when two married adults hug each other in a special way.

Mummy can I have sex?

Oh no! You have to be a grown up to have sex.

But I know how to hug!

Yes you do, but grownups hug in a different way. You would have to be way taller to do that. But regardless of how freaked out I am, I do plan to slowly talk about the birds and the bees with her as it becomes appropriate for her age. It is better that she hears about sex, babies and all that comes between from me and/or Daddy than from a misinformed friend. Let’s hope that I have more finesse with her than I did with her sister. If you happen to see a little girl running down the road covering her ears in a few years then you know what happened.

CHILDREN WILL HAVE QUESTIONS AND ADULTS NEED TO HAVE ANSWERS. HERE ARE SOME TIPS: ˏˏ

No matter your child’s age, be as cool and calm as possible. Being relaxed sets the tone for your child to feel comfortable speaking to you about sex and other topics that can cause some discomfort.

ˏˏ

Follow your child’s lead.

ˏˏ

Use real terms. Making up cute names only adds to the notion that sex and our body parts are taboo.

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Keep the conversation as simple as possible, and depending on your child’s age, you can discuss more or less of the topic.

ˏˏ

Always encourage your child to come to you if they have any questions or comments.

ˏˏ

Avoid over-sharing or rambling (which can happen if you’re slightly nervous) by saying your point and then waiting on your child to respond.

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Have fun with these conversations!

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Baby

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Hey Doll! .

Dumyé Dolls

Children use play to understand the world around them. Their imaginations come alive as they assimilate their experiences (no matter how limited they may be) into activities where they are ‘in control’. It is one of the healthiest forms of development when a child can play with dolls; learning valuable life lessons from the simple actions of feeding, holding and talking to their ‘babies’. Research cites the development of socio-emotional characteristics in children who interact with dolls in loving and nurturing pretend play.

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ut for millions of children around the world, this pretend play is often missing from their daily lives. UNICEF estimates that there are 153 million children orphaned around the world. Many have lost their families to senseless wars, preventable diseases and suffocating poverty. Often, these children touch our lives peripherally when we see them on television or read about them in the papers. But there is one lady who has decided to do more than just read about them – she is doing her part to make a change.

SUMMER 2015

Enter Sahar Wahbeh, designer and owner of Dumyé Dolls. Dumyé dolls are eco-friendly cloth dolls that are hand-crafted by skilled craftsmen and dressed in timelessly stylish clothing. Dumyé celebrates all shades of humanity with dolls of varying complexions, hairstyles and eye and hair colours. The doll collection is a manifestation of a mother’s love for her child; her desire to give her child a special gift that would become synonymous with her childhood. And for Sahar, Dumyé is even more than that. Sahar’s passion for children goes beyond the act of simply

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"MANY OF THE ORPHANS WHO RECEIVE OUR DOLLS ARE BROKEN CHILDREN."DUMYE IS OUR SMALL WAY TO HELP REPAIR THEM, ONE DOLL AND ONE CHILD AT A TIME." .

gifting a child with a doll; it extends to sharing life lessons with the children she meets. “For every doll purchased, we pledge to gift a doll to an orphan in need and allow them to make it their own through therapeutic art workshops. This process of doll creation gives the children an opportunity to self-reflect in a positive and nurturing environment, providing some emotional relief and inspiration to envision a bright future. In past workshop sessions, the children openly shared their passions, their ideas, and their dreams of who they want to become. It is through these conversations we hear hope.” Sahar is a designer who believes that design has the power to shape our world for the better. “It is our goal not just to bring love and light into the lives of the children who purchase our dolls, but moreover to every child who receives a Dumyé doll.” Inspired by an innate desire to help others, and a passion birthed with her first child, Sahar is happy to spread the gift of love all over the world. Each doll is designed with her own signature Purpose Pocket – a discreet pocket at the back of each doll with a blank piece of cloth awaiting a meaningful message from the giver. Whether it’s an affirmation, prayer or words of wisdom, the doll and her message will whisper into their hearts for many years to come. The dolls are huggable and pliable, and always manage to steal a piece of the hearts of their little owners. “Many of the orphans who receive our dolls are broken children. Dumyé is our small way to help repair them, one doll and one child at a time.” www.Dumyé.com

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SUMMER 2015


NOT ALL MILK POWDERS ARE THE SAME..

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IMPORTANT NOTICE: KLIM速 1+ is not a breast milk substitute, but a growing up milk suited to healthy children from one year onward.


Baby

Editor's NFF (New Found Favourite)

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reparing meals for your baby doesn’t have to be a chore. In fact, with the right tools, it can be lots of fun! If you’re like most modern moms, the ease and convenience of today’s gizmos and gadgets make day-to-day activities more appealing. For any parent faced with the challenge of caring for the home, the family and a new baby, revolutionary products that save time are always welcome! We’ve found a proverbial Godsend in the form of the BÉABA babycook® pro, The Original Baby Food Maker! The Babycook Pro is a 4-in-1 machine featuring a one-handed operation (virtual heaven when you’re balancing a baby in one hand while trying to prepare a meal with the other) and a 4.7-cup bowl. This sleek machine steam cooks, blends, defrosts and reheats in 15 minutes or less! From apples and broccoli to raw chicken, you can

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produce a nutrient-rich meal for baby and beyond! The designs are ultra sleek and trendy, ensuring it will complement the décor of the most mod kitchen. Innovative products for the juvenile industry with a focus on beautiful design and technology. The groundbreaking Babycook, the Original Baby Food Maker™, revolutionised traditional infant feeding by offering parents an easy, safe and well-designed way to cook healthily while embracing your inner chef. When your baby’s diet calls for food that goes beyond Mommy’s breasts, the Babycook Pro gives parents the opportunity to create the simplest, most nutritious and creative menus in just a few minutes. Visit BeabaUSA.com for more information, recipes and ideas!

SUMMER 2015


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STAY HYDRATED

www.lascojamaica.com


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These Shoes Were Made For Walking .

Many mothers can claim bragging rights to sewing clothes for their own children, but these three mothers are taking it to another level and making shoes instead! From the island of Jamaica, to the hustle and bustle of New York City, the spirit of momtrepreneurship has made an indelible footprint (get it?) in the homes and businesses of moms Sophia Neill, Roxanne Bryan and Danielle Cunningham.

PIKININI BY SORO – by Sopia Neill

Inspiried by the birth of her baby girl Suri, Pikinini owner creates unique and personalized accessories from a product line for children including headbands, sling totes, booties, tams and island-inspired clothing. Her booties are available in sizes newborn to size 12. B3: What’s the most valuable lesson that you’ve learned from being part of a creative process that has seen your brand grow from strength to strength? SN: “Pikinini was born out of a need to use my creative talent to earn an income. I have learned that it takes time, patience and great humility in order to push forward. The Brand is not only a tangible product but it’s a service that ensures that my clients get the best quality unique hand-crafted items. There is much sacrifice that goes into my work, sacrifice of time with family and self. So the lesson learned, is that the creative process never stops and has to be a very detailed one in order to produce the quality that pushes my brand forward.” Sophia Neill Creator of Pikinini by Soro Available in Jamaica at www.babeelicious.com, Kerry ManWomanHome and at Partial to Blue in Grand Cayman.

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BELLA SIMONE NYC – by Roxanne Bryan

100% handmade shoes for babies and infants in luxurious materials such as leather, suede & pony hair. All shoes are lined and are designed to encourage healthy development in little feet. B3: How did you take an idea, and have it end up on so many of those tiny little feet? RB: “Bella Simone began as a solution to a problem that’s very common to new moms: finding shoes within your own fashion aesthetic for your newborn. As a first-time mom I was so disappointed in the options available at local retailers. I hated the “socks-only” look so I sought out a fix for my problem and found a community of like-minded moms on Instagram and Etsy willing to try out this new brand. Truth be told, I did not do it alone. My husband is my partner, albeit a sometimes silent one, in this venture. I’m the creative and the face of the brand and he’s the logistical brain.” Roxanne Bryan www.etsy.com/BellaSimoneNYC .

JAMAICA SANDAL COMPANY – by Danielle Cunningham

B3: What is the inspiration that helps you to name your designs? DC: We use names that have meaning in our lives. For example, my name - the Danielle, was an elegant spin on the traditional flip-flop. Sort of like me…. I’m a flip-flop girl for sure, and with this sandal, I found an easy way to dress up a shoe that is normally much more casual. The Summer Sandal, our most popular for children, is a cut away design, and was named after my partner. The Sahara Blossom was the second style that we brought to market and was really an ode to the birth of my own daughter Sahara. We have 25 different styles including the Donna Gail, who is my mother. Many of the names we create are contingent on what we ‘feel’ at the moment of design. Our sandals are custom-made and all our adult styles can be made into children’s versions. Danielle Cunningham Designer, Jamaica Sandal Company

SUMMER 2015

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A DV E R TO R I A L

Parenting the Right Way L

oving and caring for your children are the first steps to nurturing their wellbeing, especially since they need a happy and healthy environment to grow and learn. As parents, we need to spend quality time with our children by playing with them, which helps them to develop emotionally and socially. We need to nourish our children by providing healthy and nutritious meals daily to ensure their good health. Your baby’s introduction to a whole new world of solid food starts with a spoon. One of the first foods that may be introduced is Single Grain Infant Cereals, because they contain essential nutrients as well as a range of vitamins and minerals that help to meet the nutritional needs of growing children at this important stage. NESTUM® Infant Cereals help meet your baby’s growing nutritional needs by providing carbohydrates for energy, protein for growth and vitamins and minerals for healthy development. Introducing your baby to NESTUM® Infant Cereals will help your little one experience taste, texture and nutrition in a whole new way – helping to build a positive relationship with food for a lifetime of healthy eating. Parenting can be scary, especially if it is your first time, but NESTUM® is here to help you laugh, love and celebrate parenting. Enjoy it! .

Important Notice: We support the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommendation of six months exclusive breastfeeding, followed by the introduction of adequate nutritious complementary foods along with sustained breastfeeding up to two years of age and beyond.

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CREATING CONTENT THAT CONNECTS

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BLISSFUL PARENTING with Elena Diedrick-Lynch Imagine a world where parenting is taught in school, and then you’re handed an operations manual the moment you’ve delivered your baby! Now wake-up, and instead of dreaming, ask our Blissful Mummy all the things you want and need to know to get through those pesky parenting moments. Send your questions and comments to blissfulmummy@b3caribbeanmagazine.com

sons are old enough to understand consequences. Most boys value their T.V, Tablet and video game time. So ultimately those should be the privileges that will be at stake if their behaviour is unacceptable. Once the consequence follows the action, naturally they’ll be less likely to revolt. I would suggest the following:

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Sit with Daddy and lay out what types of behaviours are acceptable and unacceptable, and the consequences associated to each.

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I would then sit down with them as a family on a relaxed weekend and explain to them very simply that things are going to change. There are expectations you’ll be setting on them in regards to their behaviour_ and if they don’t obey and comply with your expectations then privileges will be suspended until they straighten up and ‘fly right’. It’s as simple as that. Everyone involved in raising them will be responsible to follow through I order to achieve success. The more consistent you are, the quicker you can curb the behaviour and ultimately remain calm and collected. If you feel you need a sounding board, feel free to reach out to me directly via my Blissful Mummy Website/FB page. There are also a number of family therapists and counsellors that can assist you. If you however just feel overwhelmed – I promise you’re not alone in this one. Here are little tricks that I use;

How do I not lose my cool with my 2 boys aged 6 and 8? Sometimes I really want to run away. When is it time to seek professional help? Dear Mummy, I think we can all relate to this one. After researching the most effective methods to reach children, I can tell you that once you’ve lost your cool, you’ve lost your control. I’ve found that most parents who complain about losing control find themselves in the pothole of not having clearly defined consequences for behaviour that’s unacceptable to them. So invariably they lose it over and over again when their children act out, ignore or defy their rules/requests. At ages six and eight your

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1.

Give yourself a Time Out - collect yourself. Count to 10, 20 or 100 - focus on what is making you feel overwhelmed and take deep breaths to release it.

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Make time for yourself, you’re a priority too! Don’t feel guilty taking time out to collect yourself, and reward yourself for the moments you keep calm.

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Quality time. Spend some time with some other Mummies to vent, socialise and just take a break from the day to day reality.

SUMMER 2015


#HopeZoo

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Baby My son idolises his teacher. So much so that very little I say matters to him unless his teacher says the same thing. How do I deal with this? Dear Mummy, I can imagine this must be very frustrating. I would sit down with the teacher to explain the situation and call your son into a subsequent meeting where his teacher would explain to him how very important it is to listen to Mummy & Daddy. He needs to know that while she will also hold a special role in his life, ultimately Mummy and Daddy are there to love and protect him forever. I would reinforce this at home and make an extra special effort to have special Mummy & me/Daddy & me time with him, doing things he likes. Ideally without technology, so you really get to spend time enjoying each other’s company. Have fun with it. In spare time come up with cool activities you can do together for upcoming dates. Sometimes children unconsciously reach out and connect to other adults in their lives when they feel disconnected from Mummy and Daddy. It’s certainly no indictment on you – it could very well just be a phase he’s going through. Young children sometimes do it with grandparents and parents feel manipulated as a result. Teenage girls are known to do the same with aunts/older female cousins when they feel their parents just don’t understand them. I know you can get through this one. Good luck.

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Our 6-year-old daughter caught my husband and me having sex. Apparently, she watched for quite a while before I heard her shuffle. We stopped immediately, but it was very uncomfortable immediately after. We spoke about it, but I’m not 100% comfortable. How do I ensure that this doesn’t become a problem later on?

Dear Mummy, fret not! This is a situation that has happened to many of us as children, and somehow we all got through it. I would suggest bringing it up on occasion very casually… “So honey, remember the other day when you walked in on Daddy and me? Did you have any questions about that? How did it make you feel?” Invite her to ask any other questions she might have, but don’t over inform. In other words, there is no need to go into long explanations. Answer the question asked, and leave it at that. I have an almost six-year-old daughter myself, and if this situation presented I would approach it the very same way. I find most children at this age to be very inquisitive and usually without any hesitation. Unlike adults, they’re not restrained by etiquette; they speak with abandonment of what is appropriate or socially acceptable. I would ensure to encourage any discussion that she initiates with your full attention and be very straightforward. e.g. “What you saw is what Mummies & Daddies do to show their love for each other.” If she tends to ask a lot of questions (like mine does), keep in mind she might not only be asking you. So what you might want to do is use some tools to make sure she gets her facts straight. Like many parents, you may be asking yourself if she is too young to broach the Sex Talk with her. But in the physiologist and therapist circles, the rule of thumb in knowing the best time to have “The Talk” with your kids is ‘when they ask, they’re ready.’ The trick is to support them in the investigation process. For more helpful tips and support from other like-minded parents please join Blissful Mummy’s Facebook page.

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HARBOUR VIEW By Sara Conner, Arlington, Texas

Two weeks beyond her due date, after 18 or so hours of labour, two epidurals and a suction cup, my first child was born. Hospital life was so amazing. I had nurses at my beck and call, a menu that I didn’t have to prepare, and unending .

sleep and painkillers to numb all other senses of reality. Bliss. Then that ghastly day came and I had to take her home, minus nurses and the awesome white buzzer to call them. The medication was wearing off and heck, what was that in my hinder parts? A hemorrhoid the size of Mt. Everest took up residence in the most awkward of spaces. My stomach had found its own zip codes and moved freely between them while my ‘milkers’ were hard as rocks. Ughhh.

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eaving the hospital and trying to put my daughter in the contraption called a car seat without inadvertently popping her neck, proved a feat fit for Gladiators. “Is she cold, hot, wrapped right, tucked wrong, breathing, happy, aware or alive?” I thought. I wanted her back inside. Yes. Seriously. I wanted her to be back inside and I wanted to be pregnant forever. “I’m not equipped”, I thought to myself. My mother died when I was young and I had no one to call for help, I rationalised. “Oh Lord, suppose I forget to do something - like FEED her”, I thought. I felt inadequate, and we hadn’t left the parking lot yet! For her first two weeks, my life was a hormonal mess. But my step-mother was with me, so it was manageable. When she left, I was left with my own feelings of insecurity, and to make the journey even more joyful, the child had colic. She was crying, I was crying, we slept together all the time and the house was morphing into a junkyard. Then I began harbouring views of myself filled with defeat. Her smiles and cheerful disposition couldn’t overcome my fear of failing her as a mother, no matter how roly-poly her cheeks were. About three weeks after she was born, it all exploded. My husband came home and in an effort to cheer me up, offered to care for our daughter. I said no. He offered to feed her with a bottle at night so I could rest. I declined. He tried to hold her. I objected. Trying to help our daughter sleep, he bought a teddy bear with a built-in sound mimicking the heartbeat and stomach noises of the womb. He was so excited that he had found something that could help alongside the Benjamins gripe water. He told me all about it and turned the button on so I could share in the warm and fuzzy discovery. I flipped out. I burst into tears. I cried, saying I wanted her back inside, I’m going to fail, who is going to guide me, suppose I hurt the baby… and on and on. All those harboured views came gushing out; how I felt about myself and the feelings I harboured about him. I felt I was the only one who could care for her. She was my baby. I felt justified in excluding him as I found my way through this new chapter of my life. I harboured feelings of resentment. Resentment over the fact that he was able to go outside the house and speak to adults. Resentment that his body had not stretched to the size of Shamu’s and that he enjoyed SLEEP! I viewed everything through the personal impact it had on me and considered nothing else. However, he broke the fit I was having with the most sensible words I have ever heard. He calmly said, “Sara, I am a new parent as well. Heaven is my first child too; you have to know I love her just as much as you do. Adam and Eve didn’t have parents to teach them, so we will have to go to God and rely on each other. You have to trust

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"I HARBOURED FEELINGS OF RESENTMENT…OVER THE FACT THAT HE WAS ABLE TO GO OUTSIDE THE HOUSE AND SPEAK TO ADULTS." me and know you are equipped to be her mom.” Wow. I had a choice. I could stand on the pier of my current situation as a new Mom and look at all the beauty and possibilities the harbour provided in order to discover, dream and determine new perspectives. Or, I could be tied to the pier, held hostage by my feelings of isolation and insecurity, only permitting me a limited view of who I could be as a parent, and never launching new destinations for our new family. It all came down to my view of things and the feelings I harboured. I wanted more, not misery, a future, not fear, and dreams, not division. And the only way to achieve that was to get on the same page with my husband. Unity. That was the key. All the great memories to come rested on our ability to get on the same page and stay there. After I calmed my emotions down, I gave way to logic. It would be easier for us both to parent Heaven, even if the methods were a little different, and it would be fun to come up with our own ways of doing things. We began to determine the future together, plan together and work together at creating the life we wanted rather than the one we were handed. Imagine the joy I felt when I actually went to sleep because I let Heaven go into his arms, or the thrill of going to the grocery because we put her on a feeding schedule. We became a team and she became the joy of our lives. We focused on making time for each other and letting our ship sail off the pier. Then and there we began riding the waves together. ou too may be a new parent experiencing mixed feelings of nervousness and joy. Remember that you are parents, not enemies, partners, not prisoners, and you are given the greatest opportunity of all; to instill into your child the best of yourselves. Take moments, as time may be scarce, to validate, support, comfort and appreciate each other. Make new memories and dream new dreams. Allow yourselves time for transition. Don’t give up or attack each other because of all the emotions. You are not alone. There is a spouse, a friend, an aunt, a teacher – someone who is out there to encourage you. Ride it out. Stay the course. Begin harbouring the right views. Instead of seeing your ability to care for your baby through the eyes of worry, look through the lens of trust. Trust that you are perfectly equipped for your child. The view is what you make it, the possibilities are how you define them, And the experience can be great if you choose it. Sail on. .

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IG/Twitter @pastorsara

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First Aid in the Home

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By Poe Han Thar Kyaw, Kingston, Jamaica

As parents, it is our duty to protect our children from harm and danger. While it may not be possible to bandage her broken heart or gauze his eyes from all the hardships and disappointments of life, there are days where all it takes is a first aid kit to be the hero in their lives. First Aid, translated literally, is the first response to help someone in need of medical attention.

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ccidents are a normal and expected part of childhood. It is also the part of childhood that many parents would do without if offered the choice. It is always important to note that if you’re not sure how to attend to an injury, it’s always best to seek assistance. You should always have emergency numbers at your fingertips – whether it’s your Paediatrician or the local hospital or clinic; if you have young children at home, these are numbers that should be easily accessible. Keep them on your refrigerator so everyone can see.

SUMMER 2015

Having an up-to-date (no expired products) and well-stocked First Aid Kit is also a Smart Mom Move! Here are some essentials and necessary steps for your superhero moments.

FOR ALLERGIES Call the paediatrician for examination. You may have to administer a dose of liquid antihistamine, like Benadryl, dependent on your child’s age and the severity of the allergy.

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FOR BITES

FOR EYE INJURIES

Wash the area gently with soap and water. Apply pressure with a clean towel or gauze to the injured area to stop any bleeding. Apply an antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin to the area twice a day until the wound heals. Apply a sterile bandage to the wound.

Do not touch, rub or apply pressure to the eye. Head to the ER if there is any bleeding, marked redness, impaired vision or an inability to move or open the eye. For minor bruising or a black eye, ice the area (indirectly through a towel) and contact the paediatrician for examination.

FOR STINGS Get that stinger out! You can use tweezers or your (clean) fingernail; just don’t pinch it, or more venom could enter their system. Apply ice to reduce swelling in the area. Apply an antihistamine ointment to reduce the itching.

FOR EMBEDDED FOREIGN OBJECTS For a bead in the nose or crayon in the ear: Contact your paediatrician for removal. Do not try to remove it with your finger because it may accidentally be inserted further.

FOR BURNS

FOR SWALLOWING A FOREIGN OBJECT

Hold the injured area under cool running water for at least 15 minutes (Do not put ice directly onto the skin. This will aggravate the condition.) Pat the area dry with a clean towel. After about 30 minutes, cover the burn very loosely with sterile, non-adhesive gauze. Change this dressing twice a day until the wound has healed. If blisters form, do not pop them or apply any type of ointment unless advised by a doctor.

If your child swallows a magnet or battery, your child needs to be taken to the ER. If your child swallows a coin, marble or button it should pass safely within 7 to 10 days due to bowel movements. However, if your child starts to cough or drool and is unable to eat or drink, call your paediatrician immediately because the object could be stuck and may need to be removed surgically.

FOR CUTS, SCRAPES AND WOUNDS

Contact the closest poison centre in your country immediately.

Clean the area with water for at least 90 seconds to wash away bacteria. Pat it dry with a clean cloth. Apply an antibiotic cream. Seal the wound with a bandage, keeping the area moist to regenerate new skin. If your child is above the age of 4 and it’s a puncture wound caused by a metal object, check with the doctor to see if their DTaP vaccination for protection against tetanus should be updated.

FOR ELECTRIC SHOCK A doctor should be contacted as soon as possible to eliminate the possibility of injury to internal organs.

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FOR POISONING

In any emergency situation involving a child, be sure to keep calm. Children are very perceptive and will likely take cues from your actions. The last thing that you’ll want is to have a child with an injury be overcome with panic. Be sure to speak in a calm, even tone, (even if you’re scared, try your best to mask that) and assure your child repeatedly that everything will be just fine. In most cases, once you’re armed with lots of hugs, a couple of kisses and a bandage or two…you and your little one will be good to go!

SUMMER 2015


Infant Cereal

Your Baby’s tummy is as small as his little foot .

Your baby needs

5

TIMES MORE*

nutrients than you nestlebabycaribbean IMPORTANT NOTICE: We support the World Health Organization’s (WHO) recommendation of six months exclusive breastfeeding, followed by the introduction of adequate nutritious complementary foods along with sustained breastfeeding up to two years of age and beyond. *1.Walker WA, et al. Nutrition in Pediatrics, Basic Science and Clinical Applications, 2003, Body composition and growth, p. 32. 2.WHO/FAO, Human energy requirements, 2001

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Beyond

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

Ailan’s Mommy passionate woman who would eventually become...

By Michelle Gordon Photography: Dwayne Watkins Makeup and Styling: Angelie Spencer Wardrobe: drennaLUNA

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Beyond

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heirs 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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Beyond 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 stuff 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!

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ilan 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

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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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Beyond 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….

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 co-parenting

Wendy on parenting success

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 difficult 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 different degrees of difficulty in expressing emotion. We

“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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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. ” 52 | BUMP • BABY & BEYOND b3 |

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Beyond

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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. hat 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

W

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that plays a role in raising and loving Ailan. These are friends and family members across the globe who, regardless of their personal affiliation 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.” .

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Wendy on building foundations

ilan 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

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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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Beyond 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

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“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-sufficient 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-sufficient 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

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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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Beyond

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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 difficult 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 different 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 different 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.” SUMMER 2015

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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.

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“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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Breaded Chicken Tenders Cut chicken into 6 – 1 inch cubes. 1 tsp. Salt ¼ tsp. freshly ground Pepper 2 cloves minced Garlic ½ cup Bread Crumbs (Regular or Panko) Vegetable oil for frying 1. Season with salt, pepper and minced garlic. 2. Coat with bread crumbs (press the crumbs into the chicken) 3. Fry until golden brown 4. Enjoy warm or at room temperature with your favorite dip. Note: Chicken Tenders may be breaded and frozen. When ready to fry just remove from the freezer and fry frozen do not thaw.

TRY THESE EASY, FUN


Pork Tenderloin with Broccoli and Noodles 4 oz. Rice Noodles

½ tsp sugar

1lb. Pork Tenderloin sliced into thin strips

1 tbsp. oil

1 tsp. Ginger 1 tsp. Garlic

2 Cups. Broccoli 1 Red Bell Pepper diced 2 tbsp. Soy Sauce

½ tsp. Salt

2 stalks escallion thinly sliced

2 tsp. cornstarch

2 tbsp. Vegetable Oil

¼ tsp. Pepper

1. Pour enough boiling water over the rice noodles and allow to sit for 15 to 20 minutes. 2. Season the sliced Pork Tenderloin with the garlic, ginger, salt, pepper, cornstarch, 1 Tbsp. oil and sugar. 3. In a wok add the 2 Tbsp. Oil and heat. When the oil is hot stir fry the seasoned pork for about 4 to 5 minutes. 4. Add the broccoli and bell peppers and continue to cook for another 4 minutes. 5. Drain the rice noodles stir in mix in with the pork and vegetables. 6. Pour in the soy sauce and add the escallion.Turn off the stove and stir in the escallion. Enjoy. N.B. The pork stir fry can also be served with rice.

AND DELICIOUS RECIPES!

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Summer Style

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Nautical Kids’ Art with Oopsy Daisy

othing says summer like nautical art and design. Now it’s easier than ever to design a child’s room that invokes the breezy style of summer with maritime and beach

themed art. Check out Oopsy Daisy, a collection of engaging artbased products that embrace childhood and celebrate individual artistic efforts. This summer’s collection of nautical artwork includes a wide range of themes – from ocean creatures to undersea scenes, from boats to beaches and seaside landscapes. Oopsy Daisy pieces are great as a starting point to design a whole room, or as accent pieces to add special elements of visual interest. Themes are ideal for boys’, girls’ or gender-neutral rooms, and artwork can be personalized with a child’s name for a one-of-a-kind gift. Ready to start designing for summer? Browse their collection of seaside-inspired themes, available in canvas wall art, art prints, growth charts, nightlights,

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wall decals, lamps and placemats – to infuse a child’s room with nautical fun. Oopsy Daisy is a collaboration of professional artists who create one-of-a-kind art pieces combining inspiration and imagination with quality design and construction. “We believe that a child’s environment matters, and every day we get a thrill out of making products that bring positive change to homes, hospitals and schools around the world.” Oopsy Daisy products are sold online at: www.oopsydaisy.com.

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Beyond

Curly, Wavy and Coily Top 3 Hair Care Tips .

By Tawana Johnson

Let’s talk hair care for children of colour! Children are extremely active, causing parents to simply throw their strands into protective styles, often until it gets so messy that it has to be redone. This may be convenient, but it does not promote hair growth and health. Here are a few optimum hair practices for children’s hair, ensuring growth, length retention and strong strands!

PROTECT Children and parents can benefit greatly from protective styles like cane-rows, twists, plaits, or anything that tucks away or protects the ends of the hair. With extremely busy work schedules for parents, and active school lives for children, daily hair combing can be demanding. Protective styles give the opportunity for the hair to remain in a restful state, promoting growth, protecting the hair from weather elements and also for the low manipulation of the strands.

MOISTURIZE For curly/coily hair, it is especially important to moisturize because this hair type is prone to dryness, as the natural oils from the root of the hair do not travel down to the ends very easily. In order to maintain healthy hair, a good moisturizer

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should be used. Try Candy Moisture Mousse, a natural ingredient candy-themed moisturizer. You can also use oils such as extra virgin coconut oil or olive oil to seal in the moisture after using moisturizers. Tip: To moisturize hair in protective styles, use a spray bottle with a mixture of water and natural oils to spritz the hair daily.

Tip: Try detangling by parting the hair in sections and then comb through with a large-toothed comb. Candy Moisture Mousse is a Jamaican-made, all natural hair moisturizer created for women and children of colour. Designed to soften, moisturize and seal hair, it also rejuvenates dry and brittle hair and shields against harmful UV rays. For more information on Candy Moisture, contact 876-426-4101 or email candym2@hotmail.com

DETANGLE Many children do NOT like the experience of having their hair combed or detangled. It can be painful, especially if you’re not using the right tools. Try not to detangle hair when in a dry state. Spritz some water and add moisturizer or leave-in conditioner before combing through the hair. This can help to detangle without causing much pain to the child.

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A Spa Party .

I ES T “THE HAPP THE GIRLS AREST” PRET TIE rn – Audrey

Hepbu

Story by Michelle Gordon Photography: Ricardo Lewis

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pa Parties are the ‘in’ thing these days – for grown ups as well as little girls! It’s a few hours of ‘we time’ celebrating while being preened and indulged. With the seventh birthday of our EIC’s daughter just around the corner, we decided to throw one of our own. We enlisted the help of Kingston’s ‘best of the best’ to make this small celebration sparkle. Here’s what to do when you’re ready to have one of your own.

Simma (as she’s affectionately known) makes the time for children. With two girls of her own, she ‘gets it’; the concept, the effort and the detail of making a spa party for children work. Tuesday afternoons and Saturday mornings are the perfect time if you decide to have your Spa Party at The Face Place. The staff understands that spa time for a 7-year-old is not the same as that for a 27-year-old. While the same level of detail is employed, all services administered to the tiny clients are aesthetic and purely for fun. Give them a call. Each spa party is created according to your wants and needs.

WHERE TO BEGIN?

This was an easy decision for me. As my children get older, I get wiser. The large parties (you know the ones where the entire class receives an invitation… yes, those) are in the past! You’ll find as your child gets older, they are able to identify the friends that they want to be around. So you’ll find that guest lists at their events become smaller as they get bigger. My daughter was turning 7, so she got to invite 7 friends. Easy Peezy!

It’s a spa party, so you’ll need to find a spa, right? And not just any spa! For me, I wanted a spa that would make our little guests feel like big princesses even before the first service began! I called up Marie-Simone Hall of The Face Place, who was only too happy to welcome eight little girls - not an easy feat for many spas and salons. Catering to children requires not just patience and understanding, but also time. And 68 | BUMP • BABY & BEYOND b3 |

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DECIDE ON THE NUMBER OF GUESTS

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CREATE A THEME

I’m a firm believer in ‘the personal touch’ that makes everything memorable. Because you’ve chosen to do a Spa Party, your theme has already been set. So the next thing to do is to select your colour palette. This will determine your décor, tokens and even your cake. For this party, it was pink and purple! (Surprise, surprise)

DECIDE ON YOUR INVITATION

As with any event, the invitation sets the tone. In the interest of time, I went with an e-vite template that fit my theme and conveyed the message perfectly. (evite. com) My daughter’s guests didn’t have to wait until I got the chance to hand-deliver their invitations and with the instant RSVPs, I was able to start planning this personalized date right away.

CHOOSE YOUR CAKE

The sweetest part of any celebration! Every room needs a focal point and at a birthday celebration, it’s usually the cake. I rang up our DIY Fashion Editor, Angelie Spencer, who also happens to be a master baker and decorator. I shared with her the concept for this spa party; including colour palette, venue and the number of guests. When choosing a cake for a birthday celebration, remember to get a cake that the birthday girl will love. My daughter loves chocolate, but we decided to do a half and half to include a plain option for any non-chocolate cake lovers.

TO LOOT OR NOT

I love the idea of offering guests a token at the end of a party, but I’m not a fan of candy-filled loot bags. (They get enough sweet stuff throughout the party).

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o top of mind was Sheri-Ann Toppin of Topp In Designz. Sheri-Ann is the creative mastermind behind Jamaica’s number one purveyor of custom tokens, gifts and event branding. We discussed all the items that I could include in the ‘loot’ bags for the guests; a personalized spa robe, spa slippers, a bottle of nail pink nail polish and such delights. The packaging would be important and Sheri-Ann, just like all the other suppliers, got it! I got nine of everything! (Eight for the girls, and one for good measure!) The pink and purple spa robes were customized with the name of each guest embroidered on the back. White flip-flops doubled as spa slippers to ensure that their perfect pedicures would be smudge-free. Little bottles of pink nail polish were the perfect compliment to the manicure kits provided by our hosts at The Face Place. A mini journal complete with inspirational quote and a swirly lollipop for ‘sweets-sake’, completed the fab ‘loot bags’ for our little princesses! .

CHOOSE A MENU

I kept the menu simple since I knew that the girls would have little desire to focus on food. We went with chicken wings, pizza, mac & cheese squares and garlic bread. Pink lemonade was the beverage of choice, and we upped the ‘drink ante’ with crystal-styled pink rock candy from Candy Craze.

THE DÉCOR

I discussed my vision for the party with Norma Williams of NWx . Norma is a visionary when it comes to planning and executing events; even on the short notice I gave her. She knew my theme and visited the venue ahead of time, so when we went to see the event supply duo team of sisters Selena and Syreeta Hammond at New Levels Décor, we knew exactly what

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would have been needed to make this spa party shine. Pops of colour here and there, frills, fruit and beautiful flowers by Aida Davis of Aida’s Floral.

THE SPA PARTY

“Welcome!” as they received their refreshing mintinfused glasses of water on arrival. Being eager to change into their newly gifted, personalized spa robes and flip flops, eight little girls were soon ushered to start their spa services of manis, pedis and organic berry facials! With hit songs by Aria Grande , Sabrina Carpenter and Selena Gomez rocking in the background, the 3 hours of heaven-on-earth for these girls passed much too quickly. “Thank you Mommy, for a perfect birthday party.” Those were the words of my very happy 7-year-old as she drifted off to sleep, way past her usual 8 o’clock bedtime. The night was an exception to the rule, and worth every minute of the late night. I think she smiled throughout that entire night’s slumber. How absolutely perfect! Want to create your own Spa Party? Contact The Face Place for more details.

“HAPPIN CONFIDE ESS AND THE PRENCE ARE THINGS T TIEST YOU CAN WEAR”

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VENDORS LOCATION:

CAKE:

TOKENS AND GIFT BAGS:

CANDY:

The Face Place

Angelie Spencer

Top In Designz

3 Carvalho Drive, Kingston 10 876-929-8356 thefaceplaceja.com

876-805-5427

3 Birdsucker Lane, Kingston 6 876-506-1088

Candy Craze Bar and Creamery

EVENT PLANNING: Norma Williams NWx 876-381-5427

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RENTALS AND DÉCOR: New Levels Décor 3 Durham Avenue, Kingston 6 876-927-2930 newlevelsdecor.com

FLORAL ARRANGEMENTS:

Manor Park Plaza, Kingston 8 876-924-4881

Aida’s Floral and Gifts 876-564-4290

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EMPOWERING A Child Who Stutters

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By Selena Dyke

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tammering, stuttering or disfluency is a type of communication and speech disorder that happens when a person speaks; their normal flow of speech is punctuated by certain characteristics like repetitions of a word or syllable. It is relatively common in children at different developmental stages as they learn vocabulary, particularly around ages 2-3 years. At this age a child’s vocabulary and language skills are rapidly developing, sometimes faster than their little lips can keep up with; this is known as speech disfluency, and as a result stammering occurs. As your toddler grows and practices talking and saying words, stammering turns into fluid speech. If stammering continues and the condition worsens, it is then important to contact a speech therapist sooner rather than later, as stammering is treatable if caught early.

EMOTIONAL EFFECTS OF STAMMERING

Most children who stammer go through various degrees of emotions, such as self- consciousness, anxiety, anger and shame. These emotions can affect their self-esteem negatively. These

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negative emotions and attitudes associated with stammering can magnify the disorder, increasing reluctance in communication. This can ultimately interfere with their ability to practice their speech and interact freely with their peers. As a parent, when you see your child going through this emotional experience, you may wonder what you can do to help your child. To address these emotional concerns, a good place to start is to build self-esteem. Simply put, self-esteem is how you feel about yourself. As parents, we have the precarious job of fostering self-esteem and emotional well-being in our children so that they can head out into the world feeling confident and resilient. There is power in words, and the use of positive talk can help any child build self-esteem, and also succeed. Using positive language with your child can only enhance self- confidence, providing an antidote to unhealthy feelings of shame that sometimes come with stammering. Positive words can change a child’s negative opinion about him/ herself. Positive words are a simple tool for empowering and reinforcing a child’s “yes” voice. For example, a child that stammers may be self-conscious about reading in class and initially his or her “no” voice may fill his or her mind with all kinds of worries and concerns like “I can’t do this”or “I am a loser”. Instead, a “yes” voice would sound like; “I can do this” or “I am special”.

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Beyond ˏˏ

EMPOWER YOUR CHILD’S “YES” VOICE

Use positive words by utilizing the Language of Encouragement: The Language of Encouragement is the most effective tool to build self-esteem. If we want to build positive internal qualities such as confidence and self-worth, we need to use words and phrases that focus on these positive internal qualities. Encouragement uses descriptive, non-judgmental terms to cause children to say positive things to themselves. In other words it increases that “Yes” voice.

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Recognise abilities and strengths: It is important to recognise their abilities, special talents and strengths and focus on what they do well instead of focusing on their challenges. Every child is unique and comes with their own set of abilities, so it is important as parents that you help your child find what they like to do.

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Overcome the stigma of being labelled: It is really easy for children to believe that they are the disability. Children can sometimes internalise this and create a belief that there is something wrong with them. To transform this type of negative belief and thinking, it is important to help the child see themselves separate to the disability and not allow it to define who they are.

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Have patience: Allow your child the time to finish a word or sentence on their own. Make eye contact with them when they are talking. As frustrating as this can be for you, especially when you are in a hurry, the child is expressing him or herself, and deserves your full attention.

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Show Unconditional Love: Help your child overcome their frustrations by using unconditional love. What they need to hear from you in that moment is something encouraging like “I believe in you and love you no matter what”.

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Encourage Yourself: Raising your self-esteem as a parent strengthens the self-esteem of the entire family. Use positive self-talk and the language of encouragement to give yourself credit for what you are doing well.

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Here are a few activities that can help to improve self-esteem and communication: Community Service: These types of activities involve simple repetitive tasks; for example food drives, walk-a-thons, and packaging school supplies for the needy teach the value of serving others while building friendships and practicing the skills of following directions, sequencing and describing. Cooking Classes: This involves simple menus and helps to facilitate social skills. They also help children to learn new vocabulary, describe, sequence and interact with others. Sports: In sporting circles, children meet new friends and work within a structured system with personal opportunities to succeed. Selena Dyke is a Child Therapist and Parent Educator Empowering Parents • Strengthening Families • Building Social Skills Contact her at Edu_counsellor@yahoo.com

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Beyond

“WE ALL STRIVE TO FIND A HEALTHY BALANCE AS PARENTS. WHETHER WE ARE SINGLE PARENTS, COUPLED, WIDOWED, DIVORCED, NEWCOMERS OR VETERANS, WE ALL SHARE A COMMON BOND. WE CAN LEARN SO MUCH FROM EACH OTHER.” .

B3 Momtrepreneur

Samantha John Photography: WKL Media

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eet Samantha John, Caribbean mother of two and career broadcaster who for more than 15 years was one of Trinidad and Tobago’s #1 TV News Anchors. The birth of her children however, and the natural desire to spend time with her family, saw her entering the Momtrepreneur world with the modern concept of Baby Babble Radio, an online radio station playing relaxing

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adult contemporary music, with professional presenters and useful family advice, tips and conversations. Samantha has fused her love of radio with the modern technology of the Internet, to provide a platform full of entertainment and rich in content. The show’s focus is to help parents like her and her husband to navigate their way regardless of the stage they may be at on their parenting journey.

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Beyond

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hile raising her boys, being super wife to her husband of four years, Samantha manages to inspire mothers across the Caribbean to spread their wings beyond tradition and chart new courses for their families. Her boys are years apart, 13 years to be exact. Ronaldo is 15-years-old and Scott is 18-months-old. So parenting a teenager and a toddler at the same time, this mom is getting first-hand experience of both the challenges and the triumphs of childrearing in today’s world. Parenting is dynamic, and as much as we are here to teach our children, we in turn learn from our children. “I’ve learnt that a teenage daughter would be way more involved with helping with the baby”, Samantha laughs. “My teenage son grew up overnight…so for me, from an emotional standpoint, the timing is perfect. As I was on the verge of ‘losing’ my first baby, my second baby came along. I enjoy having a young child to care for in my home, it feels as if my family is complete.” Knowing what you know today, is there anything you would have done differently in the beginning of becoming a Momtrepreneur? I probably would’ve had my 2nd child earlier. My 1st boy was born before I entered the media…so he was there for the bumpy ride :) but soon enough my career took off, and although I found a new stable love and eventually remarried, in the back of mind I was worried about what having a new baby would mean to my career, (as in the time away from on-air). I have since realized, that my new family member has added so much joy and happiness, with a refocus on what’s important in life. If I’d done this sooner…maybe Baby Babble Radio would have made an earlier entrance. our Radio Station provides information, advice and a relaxing place to be; a virtual getaway for parents. What’s your favourite part of creating such a niche product? Radio is my first love, and now with babybabbleradio. com I finally get to utilise all my knowledge of radio broadcasting that previously I did not have the

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opportunity to showcase- e.g. music programming. The multimedia package that Baby Babble Radio is growing into is allowing me enormous opportunity to learn new skills, while the ones that I’ve mastered during my career are being put to fantastic use. I am happy to provide the parenting community with an entertaining space, where there are shoulders to lean on and tonnes of parenting information and discussions. What would you say to other women who want to become Momtrepreneurs by converting their work into their passion and making their passions ‘work for them’? know that juggling career and family is difficult, so most of us could never imagine adding more to our plates…but giving yourself that passionate release is probably the best thing you could do for yourself. It re-energises you, reminds you that there are more layers to yourself than mother, wife and employee…and you’d find that you have talents not even you knew of. All in all, I say..go for it! How do you maintain focus on days when Mommy wants to ‘sleep in’, but can’t?  Sleeping in has certainly become a thing of the past since Baby Scott has been born. But I’m undeterred… because I’m a night owl…and as a momtreprenuer, I do have a goal of starting my day much earlier- I imagine I will be more productive, so I’m using this in a positive way, to reset my circadian clock and make this work for me, my family and Baby Babble.  What makes it all worthwhile for you?  Baby Babble Radio operates from my home, and it allows me flexi-time, so I get to spend more time with my family. I spent so many years, running around living a hectic lifestyle, seriously thinking this is what life was supposed to be…I’m ecstatic that I have found it can be 100 times better, and balance of mind, body and spirit is possible.

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Baby Babble Radio, based in Port of Spain, Trinidad, is an online radio station providing emotional support, parenting advice and great music to listeners across the globe. www.babybabbleradio.com

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Beyond

Fruity Summer Snack Ideas S .

ummertime can be a virtual snack season in so many homes on holiday where kids get bored at the drop of a hat and moms get frustrated easier than you can say 1-2-3. This is when it’s easier than ever to reach for chips and other snacks that can be ‘less than healthy’ for our children. No matter which Caribbean island you’re on, you’ll find fruits in abundance this (and every) summer! Why not try this cool (literally) recipe idea that will work regardless of the fruit you decide to use. So now, when your children reach for a snack, you can be assured that they’re filling up on stuff that tastes good and is good for them!

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WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

WHAT TO DO: .

Blender or Magic Bullet

Wash and peel your fruit of choice

Popsicle Molds or Ice Tray

Remove small seeds (if applicable)

Sharp Knife

Cut flesh of fruit away from large seed (if applicable)

Cut into chunks

Puree the chunks in your blender

� Bowl � Fruit

Pour your smooth blended mixture into the popsicle molds or ice trays and place in freezer. Make sure your fruit pops freeze thoroughly – overnight may be best. Then serve as needed when your little ones come crying “Mummy, Mummy, I’m hungry!”

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A Caribbean Childhood Pure and Simple By Michelle Gordon • Photography: Adrian Mcdonald

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These images capture the purity and simplicity of a childhood devoid of electronics and modern amenities. It’s almost as if we’ve stepped back in time – a few decades maybe, when gadgets were few and far between, and young imaginations were fueled primarily by nature. Yet still theses pictures depict the faces of genuine happiness that so many may feel is impossible to achieve in today’s modern world. Without words to steer or guide our thoughts, we see the hopes, fears and dreams of a few children from the parish of Westmoreland in Jamaica.

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drian McDonald is a relatively new photographer, with less than 3 years under his belt, but’s he been catapulted to popularity since his images captured the hearts and minds of thousands of viewers on Bored Panda Blog where this work was first featured. Receiving a call shortly after from NY based Huffington Post and subsequently being featured there, has now made this humble lover-of-art unseasonably busy. We managed to catch up with Adrian for a quick chat, and are happy to share some of his work with you.

These pictures depict a lifestyle still enjoyed by so many children in the Caribbean today. How relevant are these moments for today’s youth?

It’s highly relevant because whilst it depicts a lifestyle that is enjoyed by Caribbean youths, it is quickly eroding, and I believe this series represents a visual preservation of such. So for those youths who are more inclined to a different lifestyle (not that it’s bad) this series also shows a different side of the spectrum. With the advent of social media power of the internet, kids are living less and less in the moment and have even less opportunity to experience life in its natural essence.

Juice boxes, bottle caps and sticks. What do these simple items mean in the life of a Caribbean child?

It’s their livelihood. When I was a child, my childhood revolved around the simplest of things life had to offer. On Sunday mornings I would look forward to catching bees in the open fields or just simply pulling my box truck along the streets and bask in the moment of having the new box truck on the block. So I think these little things offer an opportunity to integrate and develop them whilst providing a joyful experience.

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What would you hope to achieve in sharing these images with your audience?

My words remain resolute in the same thing I told Huffington Post: “I hope it warms the heart of those who see them and know that beauty still exists in life we just sometimes choose not to see it. Children live a life worth living and that’s what we ought to do: live, love, laugh.”

As a photographer who captures beauty all around, what was your inspiration to create these images?

My inspiration comes from a place within that enables me to seek to create images that will inspire others and enable the human condition. So my focus when creating and capturing is always based on the resonance that photo will have and who it will be able to help. Such was the case in this scenario.

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Do these pictures bear any resemblance to your childhood? And how would you say your adult life has been influenced. Yes they absolutely do, though I might add that my childhood in comparison to theirs was a lot more immersive. I used to play marbles and go bird shooting with catapults and even fishing in the backyard river. Today, some of those things aren’t being done any more so it’s worth understanding that some aspects of our simple lifestyle as a society and culture are eroding. However as a result of such my adult life has been morphed into what it is today, the single most important lesson that I’ve garnered from such, is that life should be lived to fullest in each moment as best as possible.

Visit Adrian’s website at http://www.lexonphotography.com


Beyond

The ULTRA Marathon By Christy Almeida, Dominican Republic

Have you ever run a marathon? An ultra-marathon? If you have, you know it’s truly exhausting. If you haven’t, you might think it’s an impossible task. Well, raising a child with autism is much like running an ultra-marathon – except you didn’t train; you are .

in no physical condition to run a mile, much less 100 miles; you can’t afford the proper running gear, and you never wanted to run a marathon. This was not your life plan. But

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one day you get the diagnosis that your baby is on the autism spectrum and suddenly

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you have no choice – you’re off running. still remember my grief and confusion once I got the diagnosis. Most vividly though, I remember my determination - to learn about autism and how best I could help my baby. I did my research. No one had the answers that I wanted. I quickly learned that there is no better symbol for autism than a puzzle piece. Autism is THE unsolvable puzzle, it seemed. There are so many, very expensive, therapies that help some children, but none are truly guaranteed to work. To make matters worse, most of these therapies and special schools and centres couldn’t be found in a lot of the Caribbean islands. In 2009, I could only find established centres in Jamaica and Trinidad. So we moved to Jamaica, where there is a wonderful centre and an established Parent Organization, the Jamaica Autism Support Association (JASA). For us, it was like running that first mile when you’ve never run before and you have no idea where you are going, but JASA was there on the side-lines to provide some guidance and cheer us on. Once we started Behavioural Therapy, we learned to celebrate accomplishments that parents of neurotypical children would ignore. My son didn’t push a toy car until age 6 – after years of ‘playtime’ therapy. He was 4 when he started waving ‘bye-bye’ and didn’t start saying ‘bye-bye’ until the next year. I jumped for joy the first time I saw my son run up to a child and push him. You might think ‘that’s not a good thing”, but it was the first time my son had showed interest in another child. He was 5 and he was trying to engage play and make a friend. After years of my son living in his own little world, this was such a HUGE moment; like crossing your first finish line of a 5K race.

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However, just because we had crossed that line didn’t mean the race was over, or that it got easier. I once hoped that my son would have that Helen Keller moment – you know, when she realised that the sign for water meant water, and all of a sudden she began to understand sign language? It’s not like that for my son. Just because he tried to play catch on the beach today, doesn’t mean that tomorrow he’ll want to play and interact with his ‘friend’ again. It’s as if you’ve hit your stride and then all of a sudden you trip and hurt your ankle. Illness, holidays, a change of therapists… anything that changes in my son’s life affects his behaviour. After a nasty cold, my son did not sleep more than 3 hours a night for months. After a Christmas break from school, my son, who has always been the most loving child, started biting himself and banging his head. During times like these, mental and emotional exhaustion kicks in, but there’s no way we can stop. We just keep running. In the quest to help unlock the mysteries of my son, my ‘silent wonder’, we moved him to an amazing school in San Juan, geared specially for children on the autism spectrum. Now he’s in a ‘typical’ school in Santo Domingo, DR, where he is one of only two special needs children. Our aim is to keep trying different therapies and to open up his world to as much as possible, in the hopes that he will one day open up to us. He’s now 7 years old and still non-verbal. Our struggle continues. I have no clue if he will ever graduate from high school or even be able to tell me about his day. We just keep working with him, celebrating each tiny accomplishment and loving him for the amazingly happy child he is. Last month, for the first time ever, he told me “I wuv you”. If that’s not enough motivation to keep us running in this never-ending marathon, I don’t know what is. Please note that in the 5 years since the doctor diagnosed my son, more centers and special schools have opened up in various islands, such as the Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Trinidad, and Puerto Rico.

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Autism Red Flags

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hen you look at your beautiful newborn the thoughts that fill your head are those of running and laughter, excelling in sports, dance, school. The future is bright and he or she could be the president of anything that they desire – ‘President of the World’ has a nice ring to it. Your head is full as you snuggle deeper into the love haze that your child always induces. But sometimes the way things play out in your head is not necessarily the way they play out in real life, and you start noticing that your sweet baby isn’t doing the things that the other children are doing. Perhaps, not playing with other children, preferring to line things up in a corner, not really getting any comfort from being held, not responding when called by name, or not talking as much as ‘little Miss Chatter-box’ who is so much younger than your child. If you have concerns about your child’s development, don’t wait: speak to your pediatrician about getting your child screened for autism. .

HERE ARE SOME RED FLAGS THAT YOUR CHILD MAY HAVE, WHICH MAY LEAD YOU TO CONSIDER AUTISM. YOUR CHILD MAY: ˏˏ ˏˏ

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Have obsessive interests Flap their hands, rock their body, or spin in circles Have unusual reactions to the way things sound, smell, taste, look, or feel

If your child is diagnosed as being autistic, early interventions, in the form of speech therapy, occupational therapy, and ABA to name a few, are critical to gain maximum benefit from existing therapies. Children do not outgrow autism. As a parent you would need to acknowledge your disappointment and grief, but try not to wallow in it. Gather all the support that you can. Find a support group like the Jamaica Autism Support Association (JASA), because nothing beats talking to people who are going through the same things. JASA was founded by parents who saw this need for parents to be there for each other as they wielded their way around the challenge that is autism. Their website www.jamaicaautism.org holds a wealth of information on dealing with autism in Jamaica. The most important thing to remember at the end of the day is that, despite the diagnosis, your baby is still loved by you, and that will never change.

"AS A PARENT YOU WOULD NEED TO ACKNOWLEDGE YOUR DISAPPOINTMENT AND GRIEF, BUT TRY NOT TO WALLOW IN IT."

Not respond to their name by 12 months of age Not point at objects to show interest (eg. point at an airplane flying over) by 14 months Not play “pretend” games (eg. pretend to “feed” a doll) by 18 months Avoid eye contact and want to be alone Have trouble understanding other people’s feelings or talking about their own feelings Have delayed speech and language skills Repeat words or phrases over and over (echolalia) Get upset by minor changes

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Find the most complete selection of American Standard products at Active Home Centre.

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Come in and visit our showroom! 84 Constant Spring Road, Kingston 10 Monday to Friday | 9am - 6pm and Saturdays | 10am - 5pm Tel: (876) 755-0027-8 Visit us online: Some items pictured are representational. Actual unit may dier from one shown.

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B3 Summer 2015  

B3 Caribbean Magazine's 11th issue features Trinidad & Tobago's Wendy Fitzwilliam starring in her favourite role as Ailan's Mommy! B3 Carib...