Monday, November 29, 2010

Teaching Your Teen to Drive Safely

Teaching your teen to drive can be a very daunting task for most parents. Just the idea of letting your teen get behind the wheel can raise one's stress level through the roof. Even with driver education training by certified instructors, parents must be aware that their teen is also strongly influenced by what he or she observes when in the driver's seat. When you take into account that motor vehicle accidents are the primary cause of death for teens in the US – killing 5,000 young people each year - this makes it imperative that they do not pick up any of our bad driving habits.

An excellent resource for parents and teenagers who are learning to drive, which also gets a huge thumbs up from is, This website is the companion to the book “3 Keys to Keeping Your Teen Alive” a 250 page workbook that complements the Graduated Drivers Licensing programs of North America and is full of information and tips on how to teach teenagers to be safe and responsible drivers. It is presented in a way that makes it enjoyable for teenagers, using humour, games and quizzes to learn the skills needed and easy for parents to follow. It also uses real life examples of other teens' driving experiences. The website itself has an extensive driving lessons video library, as well as other driving topics geared at teen drivers and their parents.

Monday, November 22, 2010

A very special offer from parenting expert Renee Mill

Morning all, just a quick note about a rather special offer that we came across and I know you'll be interested in. Parenting expert Renee Mill is offering a package of 11 of her "No Sweat Parenting" DVDs at a huge discount. It's a clever idea - she's discounting the price drastically - by up to 98% - depending on how many buyers are interested.

Some of the titles that particularly caught my eye included “Teaching Empathy”, “Building Resilience”, “Gaining Cooperation with Ease”, and many more valuable titles are included in the package.

We think that a lot of parents will benefit from Renee’s expert advice. She has been teaching parenting classes for many years and has helped hundreds of parents all over the world.

The link for the special offer is

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Book Review - "Dear Austin - A Letter to my Son"

I have just spent an enjoyable hour with this delightful book (see left) and I would have loved to have written something like this for my daughter (now 21 years old).

The book is a personal, touching letter from a father to his son Austin, as Austin leaves home to start college. Words of wisdom are shared, memories described - and beautifully illustrated - and most importantly, love expressed honestly and vividly.

A great book not only for adult children to read, but just as importantly for the parents that are left behind! "Dear Austin" is available on Amazon or from the author's website at:

Happy Parenting!

Easy to enter cooking competition

This really cool competition from "Love With Food" is very easy to enter - simply choose a photo of you or your child cooking, or alternatively a photo of a meal you've prepared. Here's the link for the competition:

The prize is an autographed cookbook, "Family Meal" by Tyler Florence. Subtitled with the great sentence "Bringing People Together Never Tasted Better", Tyler's cookbook is all about fresh, local food cooked in a simple yet delicious style. Ideal for beginners and seasons chefs alike!

The competition closes on December 5th, so be sure to enter as soon as you have found a cute or interesting photo to submit!

"Love with Food" competition

As you know, Monicka and I are keen on cooking and regularly stress the benefits of cooking with your children. Family meals are equally important, so we're delighted to bring you this competition from Love with Food for an autographed cookbook by Tyler Florence, along with a $100 restaurant coupon.

All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning is to enter your favourite Thanksgiving recipe. The winning recipe will be featured in the Love with Food newsletter as well as winning its owner the great prizes mentioned above - your chance at 5 minutes of "chef" fame!

Here's the link to enter the competition -

Good luck!!


Saturday, November 20, 2010

MomentGarden - a fun way to record and share your child's special moments

Monicka and I were asked to review a new website called "MomentGarden" and I have to say, it is an adorable site.
At MomentGarden, you can post pics and notes all about your baby or child's special moments, development, and so on, and friends and family can come and see what's happening in your child's "garden" - and can even contribute, if you want them to.
What's special about this site, for me, is that it is SO simple and easy, and has such a clear cut, fun interface. It's completely free to use, and the signup process is very, very easy. In fact, it's so easy that a toddler could probably learn to use it - now what fun that would be!

Goal setting for children

As winter draws in and Christmas approaches, it's a nice time to teach goal setting to small children. Our kids tend to have much shorter attention spans than adults, and to a small child a week can seem like a long time.

Small goals are great for small children - the idea is to get them to start setting some small, short term goals! Christmastime is a good opportunity to introduce children to goal setting and some of the things that go hand in hand with good goal practise.

For instance, you could:
  • Enlist your kids' help in organising and sending out the family Christmas cards on time - introducing the idea of deadlines with regard to goal setting.
  • Help your child plan, design and create a special hand made gift for someone special in his life - friend or relative. This introduces the joy of goal setting with the aim of doing something nice for another.
  • Teach your child how to set a savings goal for something she wants to buy for Christmas - whether for herself or a loved one.
Happy holidays and have fun with your kids! :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Here's a very interesting educational tool . The "K5Stars" system is like an online homework/training centre for school kids. The difference being that it's designed to be FUN.

The premise of the system is that the basics should be mastered very very well. I think this is extremely important. Our kids will ferret out their passions and get GREAT at subjects that truly interest them, if they know the so-called "3R"s - reading, riting (LOL!) and 'rithmetic - inside out.

The huge variety of games are classified by type - such as spelling, arithmetic, fractions, and so on - as well as by recommended grade level. So it's easy to pick games to help your kid practise and strengthen the core skills he needs.

There's a free 7 day trial, and the system is well worth taking for a test drive so do head on over to this link: Educational games for kids today!