The Benefits of Cosleeping

MommyAfterWork-CoSleep-Mono

Co-sleeping is when babies and young children sleep at proximity with their parents.

It could be that kids and parents share the same bed or multiple beds in a room or some families uses crib that is securely attached next to the parent’s bed so mommies have easy access when nursing the baby. While the co-sleeping debate goes on, it is surprising to know that a lot of parents around the world choose this set-up. Like us, we co-sleep with our kiddos because of the following benefits:

Promotes Closeness
For weekdays, my husband and I are almost 9 hours away from our kids because of work. Thus, we only have a few hours to connect with them — asking how their day was, sharing breakfast or dinner, school reinforcement, story telling, bedtime bonding and sleeping together.
I’d rather hear the noise of my kid’s breathing as they sleep or my husband’s snore than the deafening silence at night. Somehow sleeping together promotes closeness and attachment with each other.

Longer Sleep
Kids are a bit sensitive, when my kids wake-up and noticed that they are alone in the room, they rather look for us than return to sleep. But when they still notice parent’s presence, they sleep longer. Parent’s presence is surely and comfortably soothing.

Sense of Security
I don’t know with you but cuddles and kisses during bedtime is like security blankets, these bonding and closeness develop the feel of being safe, secure and of course loved.

Saves Electricity
At 31ºC and 70% humidity, no one wants to spend in this sweltering weather. Perks of living in a tropical country is having a warm weather all year round as well sweat and perspiring body everyday. No wonder people loves to stay in malls. Some families would invest in air-conditioning system for a cool good sleep at night. Rather than using all air-conditioning, we gather ourselves together in one room :)

With proper bed sharing guidelines, co-sleeping is not that bad after all :)

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Love Letter on a Hearts Day

Mommy Affter Work - BhoandBalot

Dear Ang,

17 years, 3 months and 7 days ago, we were officially together as I agreed to be your girlfriend. You must have love me that much that you ask me again to be your girlfriend after being rejected. I’m glad you did ask again because I already felt the same way, I am thankful for the persistence.

When I failed the ECE Licensure Exam, I tried to stop the relationship that just started. I want to focus on my review and I didn’t want to get distracted as I prepare to retake the board exam. But then, you must have love me that much that you give your all out support. In fact, your encouragement and constant reminder to study were not a distraction at all. Somehow it help me pass the April 2001 ECE Licensure Exam.

You chose to work up north, I chose down south. It was a long distance relationship, but then, you must love me that much that you invited me to work at same location with you. I did follow you but still, work hinder us to spend valuable time together as we worked on different shifts. But then, those love letters and text messages were the best. It brightens my day despite the stress from work.

You accepted a favorable job offer down south and leave me. Thankful that the setup was just for awhile and that you must have love me that much for you saved all your pay just so we could get married as soon as possible. We got married and I gave up my blossoming career and relocated, excited to start a family with you.

As we get to know each other, slowly we started to struggle with our everyday conflicts. We argue and get frustrated as ours was not a perfect relationship. You are disappointed in a lot of things especially when I cannot meet your expectations. We failed to compromise — from choosing a day’s meal to choosing the right discipline method for our kids. But then, you must have love me that much that you tried to be patient with me, you choose to understand me, you choose to pray and hope, you choose to reconsider, you choose to love.

Hope you’ll never get tired sticking with me.

I love you and Happy Valentines Day.

Always,
Balot

Why A Good Night’s Sleep Is Fundamental To Family Health

pexel - sleeping girl

Everyone wants a family life full of positive vibes and good relationship with everyone, right? A healthy family members also means a happy life for everyone but this might be difficult to achieve when someone falls ill or sick, or the whole family indulges in an unhealthy habits. The entire family dynamics suffers. Of course, people cannot help falling ill, surely there methods that can be help avoid this malady.

Nowadays, health professionals advises everyone, especially the parents, to reconnect with sleep and develop a healthy sleeping habits. Here are some collected tips and hopefully everyone can glean from it. If you’ve figured out that something in your family dynamic needs to change, assessing the wholesome health of each member of the family can be a great place to begin.

It Nourishes
Of course, sleep is something we all need to survive. However, as a child sleep is even more important than a child could ever know. It might be hard getting your unruly toddlers to sleep when you want them to, but that should never mean they are allowed to stay up late at night. A regular and consistent bedtime is important if you hope to allow a child room to develop and grow in the best way possible. Sleep builds and rebuilds the body, and all aspects of healthy development will be tainted without it. Sleep nourishes, and for that reason it’s one of the more important things to get right, from ensuring the bed is never too hot, the room is ventilated and the right mattress from ChooseMattress.com can make all of the difference.

It De-stresses
Sleep allows your children time to subconsciously reflect on and heal from the day they’ve just lived. Being a child is not easy, as learning to be a human as well as the constant responsibility of schooling and social dynamics can take a toll on them. A good long sleep nightly is their best defence against being worn down from fatigue, allowing them a sense of personal time that truly enables them the option of feeling comfortable in their own space. This can make all the difference between a child who is regularly irritable or anxious with outside events to a child who is able to digest the oncoming stresses of life in a multitude of healthier ways.

It Wards Off Illness
Children are susceptible to illnesses,and as their immune system develops you can be sure they’ll experience many of these. Making this worse by a lack of sleep can truly prevent them from getting better at all. It can mean certain illnesses last longer or repeat after they have been shaken off. A great night’s sleep gives your child, and by extension you less chance of getting ill, even when surrounded by many children at school who carry bugs and other transferable nastiness.

With these tips, you can be sure that sleep will be reprioritized in your household.

5 Different Ways To Improve Your Finances For This Year

pexel - dollar on the groundPhoto Credits

At this time of year, after all the expenses from the holidays, its safe to say that our finances can be a bit tight. When a new year begins, we can all feel the pinch, whether you’re currently in financial trouble or not. But, this doesn’t mean that the rest of the year has to be tough when it comes to money, right? It’s only natural that everyone is going to start off wanting to be a bit frugal, but by the end of the year, we could definitely change that. If one of your resolutions for the year ahead is to be frugal and really make the most of your finances, you’ve come to the right post. Because we’re going to talk through five different ways (from well knowledgeable advisers) that we can do to improve our finances for the year ahead.

Start A Budget
The first thing you’re going to want to do, is to start a budget. This is something that you often associate with being on a tight budget, but that’s not necessarily the case. It’s just a way to get much smarter with your money. Your budget can be as big or as small as you need it to be, but the point is to get yourself used to allocation portions of your income for set things, and then sticking to it. If some of those set things are savings and a fashion fund, then so be it. But budgeting is a great way to keep your mind in check when it comes to what you’re spending.

Reduce Your Outgoings
Now that you’re getting used to the idea of being more conscious of your money and how you spend it, you’re then going to want to think about reducing your outgoings. This is something that comes quite naturally to you. Because as you start to look into what you’re spending more, you’ll notice that there are things you spend money on that you don’t want to be spending, or at least not as much. So this will allow you to start saving on your monthly expenses overall.

Increase Your Income
From here, you may also want to look into ways of increasing your income. This can often feel difficult to do if you’re not able to get a promotion in your current job. But you could look at getting a new job, moving to a new company, or even starting something for yourself. There are lots of different side hustles, from selling crafts to freelance writing, than can help you top up your income.

Bridge The Gap
However, each of those things can take time. And if you’re currently in a difficult financial situation, you may need to look into small personal loans online to help you bridge the gap. It’s still important for you to stabilize and improve your situation now, so that it can improve as the year goes on.

Set Goals
Finally, you’re also going to want to think about setting yourself some financial goals too. Because having goals helps you to stay on track. Whether it’s to save a certain amount or to reduce debt, you will be able to actively work towards that goal to then achieve it by the end of the year.

Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year Everyone.

MommyAfterWork_2018

Hey, hey, hey!
How was your new year? Hoping for the best year ahead :)

For us, this is our second time we welcome the new year at our own home away from our family at the province. We try to enjoy and have fun too even we are physically away from the clan :)

The family had good year last year, thanks to His grace. Though we had a rough vacation due to typhoon and flood and UTI and LBM and then death of a family member as the new year starts, we are moving on and moving forward.

Typhoon Vinta
Typhoon Vinta passed by Northen Mindanao last December affecting lots of families including the husband’s. Hubby’s house was slightly affected with the flooding thus draining the water and house cleaning is needed. Additionally, we are thankful that everyone in city is safe, thanks to the alertness and cooperation of the community.

UTI and Amoebiasis
For some reason, UTI strikes me during my stay in the province and my daughter togther with her cousins suffered from LBM and fever too due to amoebiasis. We blame the recent flooding in the city that could possibly contaminate the water supply. With our situation, we decided to visit the hospital to seek medical help. However, we had a bad experience with Cagayan de Oro Medical Center. The ER team don’t attend after the hospital’s office hours especially if you are using HMO so be sure to bring extra cash when go there after office hours and on holiday season. Additionally, the made a clarification that ER will not entertain you if your illness is not life threatening. Good thing there still kindness when we ask for we made an appeal.

Death and Hope
The passing of my sister-in-law’s husband is a big realization that our stay here on earth with our family is temporary. His death was sudden being young and relax. I’m lost of words. Jeremiah 29:11 reminded me that God is good. God told us not lose hope for He has a plan and gives us an assurance that everything is gonna be okay.

Jeremiah 29:11 (from New International Version (NIV))
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”.

Still Inspired by life’s beauty, we are here to enjoy life to its fullest, create moments with your family, have fun and pray. While we are given a chance to savor and enjoy this God-given life.

And so with hope Mommy After Work is back to sieze the day.

Have a Happy New Year Everyone!

Things That Means Financial Trouble For Families

Keeping on top of your finances when you’ve got a big family is a balancing act that takes a while to master. The most frugal families can run into trouble, even if they’re getting everything right. Life throws you curveballs sometimes and if you aren’t ready to deal with them, you can quickly find yourself in hot water. When it comes to your finances, most of these surprises are things that you can prepare for easily. They’re also things that hit most families at some point so knowing what they are is the key to staying on top of your money. These are the things to watch as these most likely means family in financial trouble.

FinancialTroublesPhoto Credit

Low Income

This is an obvious one but you need to know how to deal with it properly. A common response to low income is to borrow money to make up the shortfalls. Unfortunately, this isn’t the way to go and if you’re borrowing every month, you need a reality check. If you can’t afford your current lifestyle on your wage then you need to cut down, it’s as simple as that. You can start looking for a better job but in the meantime, you need to stop spending so much.

Unexpected House Repairs

Nobody plans for house repairs and if you get a burst pipe or your boiler breaks down, you’ll have to pay out for emergency plumbing services, it’ll cost you around $900 but if the damage is more serious that could go up to a few thousand dollars easily. Chances are, that wasn’t factored into your budget for the month. You should always have a healthy savings account to deal with situations like this, it’s also important to make efforts to avoid damage in the first place. Keeping up with small repairs around the house reduces the chance of bigger problems emerging so it’s going to save you money in the long term.

Healthcare Costs

Health insurance is one of the biggest expenses that most families have and they can easily spiral out of control. If a family member is in an accident or is diagnosed with a serious illness, those bills are going to start shooting up. You’re also likely to need treatments that aren’t covered by your insurance and some of them can cost tens of thousands. You’d be surprised how often there are mistakes on your medical bills so always check them thoroughly, if you challenge them you can pay less.

Financial Disputes

Arguments about money are one the leading causes of problems in a marriage, and they can land you in financial trouble as well. If you and your partner have different ideas about money and how you should use it, you’re never going to agree on a working budget. When you’re working against each other, you’re more likely to make bad decisions. Always try to talk through it and make sure you’re on the same page.

Preparing yourself for these financial surprises might be simple as long resolutions were already planned out, furthermore, it will help stop you from getting into trouble in the future.

Tips in Making Your Home Asthma Safe

If your child suffers from asthma, you know how worrying it can be. The last thing you want your child to go through is an asthma flare up. A flare up is usually caused by pollen, dust, mold or dirt emissions in the air. For most people, these triggers are rarely a problem, but for kids with asthma, it’s something that’s a constant problem. Children should never have to deal with homes that make them unwell. So, what can you do to make sure your home doesn’t trigger an asthma attack?

pixabay-feetonlaminatedfloorsPhoto Credit

Wood Floors
Swapping your carpet for wood floors will allow you to avoid as much dust in the home. Dust mites have a habit of burying deep into carpets, so no matter how often you vacuum, you may not be able to get rid of them. Having a wood floor, whether it’s laminate or solid wood, will allow you to vacuum up dust easily. It’s also the perfect flooring for cleaning up after messy children and spilled drinks.

Your Bedding, Pillows and Stuff Toys
Your bedding is a great breeding ground for dust mites. The bedroom is the most common place in the house to find dust mites, so it’s important to clean there regularly. To avoid dust mites in bedding, vacuum the mattress every two weeks and wash bedding in hot water and on a high heat dryer cycle every month. Change pillow cases and air dry or put pillows in the sun to freshen them up before putting in back in the bedroom. Kid’s stuff toys must also be washed regularly.

Insulation
Old insulation can attract dust like wild fire. Many people never see the benefit in replacing old insulation, but if you live with a child who has asthma, it could do wonders for their health. Old insulation removal doesn’t cost much and replacing it with new insulation every few years could avoid you dealing with excess dust within the home.

Avoid Clutter
It’s easy for clutter to build up when you live with a large family, but clutter often gathers dust and builds up until it becomes a problem. Try to avoid clutter in the main rooms, like the living room and bedrooms. You can avoid clutter by using storage boxes and asking family members to store their belongings away.

Get Rid of Mold
Mold is a proven trigger for asthma, so if you have mold in your home, it’s important to do what you can to get rid of it. You can get rid of mold by using a dehumidifier in the rooms with damp patches. Air diffusers or catalytic lamps life the Lampe Berger helps cleans the air too but check first sensitivity to fragrance. Make sure to take down any wallpaper that has gone moldy and get rid of any plants that may be growing mold. You can clean mold off the walls by using a bleach solution.

pixabay-rabbitPhoto Credit

Animal Triggers
If your child has asthma, having a pet could be a trigger. The best solution is to keep the pet outside or in a room that isn’t often used by your child. Playing with a pet could be perfectly fine, but hugging and kissing the pet may start off an attack. Use your intuition and limit the amount of time your child can spend with your pet.

Keeping asthma triggers to a minimum isn’t easy, but it is the healthiest option for your child.

Messed-up Friday and Patience

Quotes-About-Patience
I had a rough start Friday. I slept late last night and even if I’m still groggy at 5AM, had to force myself to get up and prepare for the day. It still Friday and that means the kids still have classes today. Had to walk me back for more snuggle. As I open the freezer, turns out that the fish and pork which was planned to cook this morning was not thawed, thus, still as hard as rock, no deciding to change breakfast plan, I waited and grumble thus, breakfast was prepared late. Then, my heart burst when the kids didn’t have interest on my cooked meals that I had to lecture them not to be choosy and eat what is being served on the table even if that food is not yummy. Still cramming preparing their baon, afraid not to completely done in time for the carpool’s arrival. And while I’m on panic mode, the husband was just calm.

Not able to hold my feelings and not want to make a scene, I went upstairs and cried.

The kids followed me (they noticed it). The eldest said she’s sorry but when I asked her what she’s sorry for, she cried too. But our drama was cut short when the carpool arrived, so we just said our goodbyes and our take cares.

Still upstairs, I fixed the bed, then took a bath. Feeling refreshed, went down and ate my breakfast with the husband asking me what happened. See how insensitive, hmp!

Went to work lightheaded. My manager greeted me with a reminder about my multiple late last month. Which reminds me adjust my schedule at home to avoid being late at work.

Thought about having an early lunch but had to buy a birthday gift for my son’s classmate. I almost forgot that my son had to attend his classmate’s birthday party. Thus, had a late lunch instead.

Good thing, no urgent tasks at work.

The husband was mad that I had to let him wait a little longer outside my office. He wants to avoid the traffic and because I’m late, we had to endure again that terrible traffic jam.

Got home safely and found out that I had my period.

So had to conclude that today was a messed-up day due to female hormones… and if only I handled things differently.

Seriously, having no house help for more than a month is stressful and it tested our limits. Even the husband already complained. But with all the challenges we encountered, how we react and handle it matters most. If only I have the patience. The patience…
to accept and learn to reconsider,
to suffer and learn to alter,
to welcome and and learn to improve.
I’m no perfect mom, I had my tantrums too but I just hope I can control them. Lord, I pray for strengthening my patience so I could be able to think before acting..to avoid broken hearts and relationships.

I am thankful that despite the setbacks this morning my kids still love me.

Oh, patience…please let me be your friend.

Rashes and Human Nature Baby Wash & Wonder Oil

3 months after I gave birth to my son, rashes are all over his body.
Could be because I stop breastfeeding him and was not able to adopt with the formula milk?
Could be our place due to too much dust or allergens? (Rented apartment was near highway.)
Could be his shampoo or the laundry soap used in washing his clothes? or soap for his bottles?
We just don’t know the reasons.

Jiggys-Rashes

Whatever it is, these rashes took us multiple trips to his Pedia, Dra. Myrna Lopez, an advocate to natural healing and healthy lifestyle.
She recommended breastfeeding but its just that my boobs are not cooperating :( so we tried different types of formula milk.
She recommended general house cleaning. She also advised us to avoid stuff toys.
She even ask us to change our laundry soap to the mildest possible type of soap as well as the soap for infant formula bottles.
If you are formula feeding, you may want to check out Kokopax for their Infant Bottle Reviews.
She also recommended change of baby soap and shampoo and initially advised to use Cetaphil.

Cetaphil Skin Cleanser has a mild formulation that soothes skin as it cleans. Since it is mild, I assume it is gentle for a baby’s delicate skin.

Well, I see improvements.
But as much as we want to continue using the product, we just can’t.
Afraid that my baby might get used to the product in exchange of an empty wallet is impractical.
Because, we just can’t afford.

Hearing our concerns, Dra. Myrna Lopez, recommended Human Nature Natural Baby Wash and Wonder Oil.

According to Human Nature, this baby wash is 100% free from harmful chemicals to give mommies and daddies that peace of mind that only goodness touches the baby’s skin. It gently cleanses the baby’s skin and hair with soothing and calming lavender, rosemary, and chamomile extracts. It’s dermatologist- tested so it’s gentle enough to use even on a newborn’s delicate skin. While the Natural Baby Oil uses pure, premium-grade sunflower oil that’s perfectly safe and mild for your baby. Also ideal to infant massage, a few moisturizing drops of this wonder oil can help soothe itchiness.

HumanNature-BabyWash
Photo Credits: Human Nature

HumanNature-WonderOil

Photo Credits: Human Nature

And it did wonders!
Moreover, we need not to worry on our budget since these products are affordable.

And it has been 6 years and we are still using Human Nature Baby Wash and Wonder Oil.

Disclaimer: This is not a paid post, just one happy mommy here.

Flood and Fire

Monday, January 16, 2017.
Northern Mindanao was greatly affected by flood due to heavy rain brought by LPA (Low Pressure Area) and tail-end of the cold front.

I was born and raised at Cagayan de Oro City. We live near that school which became famous for its wait-deep flood and stranded students. That school is my Alma Mater. That school is MPSC, MUST and now USTP. During my high school days, I like when it rains because there is a possibility for classes to be suspended due to classroom flooding. Our classrooms were a foot below the ground level since it is located below the school’s gymnasium, thus the water easily gets in.

Our house is just a minute walk from my school but that doesn’t mean that our place gets affected from the school’s flood. There maybe flood in the neighborhood, but not inside our house.

Then there’s flood control implementation — the school elevated their school grounds, the main highway is also elevated and the creek is modified. Lim Ket Kai mall which is in front of the school made some changes as well, you know — urbanization, modernization.

For some reason, last January 16, 2017, flood finds its new path to our place, in our house which have caused a waits-deep flood. The main highway flood is also deep enough to submerged a 4×4 pick-up thus causing students and other commuters to be stranded. That was only a 2-3 hours heavy rain. This is something the community of Cagayan de Oro City should be to be alarmed with. Remember Typhoon Sendong last 2011? Had the local government done something then to prevent another disaster? Hope for more improvements, CDO!

CagayanDeOroFloodJan2017

Photo Credits: Catherine Heruela via Dodong Tipoy http://www.cdodev.com/

Wednesday, January 18, 2017.
Another heartbreaking news we received early in the morning. I called my father to ask about the flood updates in our house and instead of talking about flood, he told me about fire. My brother-in-law’s house was caught on fire, burned down everything. All consumed.

Worst, this is the my sister’s second fire experience. Personal belongings and stuffs gone the second time. This time, the livelihood of my brother-in-law’s mom has nothing left as her 20 computer set vanished in a matter of hours.

The greatest comfort from the news was that my sister, brother-in-law, niece and all the family members are safe and alive. Thankful that nobody was hurt.

FireJan2017

Photo Credits: Omar Jensen Garcia

Your generosity will be very much appreciated if you have extras.
Clothes for 1 yr old baby and for 3 yr toddler is a big help.
Text or Call 0917 623 2712 for details.

Unfortunate events either break or make you:
It may break the family’s planned vacation yet make your family’s bond stronger;
It may break your heart for the lost possessions, yet make you appreciate compassion from everyone’s help.
It may break you or overwhelm you from the challenges, yet make your faith stronger, closer to Him and learn to let go.

Praying for my sister, brother-in-law and family for strength despite the sadness, to be able to smile even if its hurting, to be able to get up and start again even if it feels like quitting.