Parents As Career Coaches

Parents help us discover the gifts and the callings that God has for our lives. Parents help children and teens discover their vocational interests and the motivational gifts. Parents identify the steps and resources that are necessary to develop the qualities and talents that children and teens possess.

Parents know that children and teens receive the vocational interests, abilities, skills, and talents in a seed form. These seeds will develop into careers, jobs, tasks, assignments, or ministries. Then, the talents and gifts will produce earnings, wages, and spiritual rewards as the children receive pleasure from knowing that they are fulfilling the callings that God has placed on their lives.

The Goal of a Parent

A parent receives direction from Proverbs 18:16, Proverbs 22:6, and 1 Peter 4:10.

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.

1 Peter 4:10 As every man has received a gift, even so minister the same gift one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.

Proverbs 18:16 A man’s gift makes room for him, and brings him before great men.

To learn about abilities, interests, and motivational gifts, parents have many tasks:

Assess children’s and teens’ vocational interests, abilities, skills, beliefs, and values.

Discover potential careers that are linked to children’s and teens’ identified interests.

Help children and teens choose the suitable post-secondary education and training.

Provide resources that help children and teens utilize their vocational interests, abilities, skills, beliefs, and values.

Understand the relationship between education, training, and specific occupations.

Introduce experiences that meet career, cognitive, emotional, and behavioral goals.

Present information on the current and future labor market.

Introduce problem-solving and decision-making strategies, and

Solve career issues, conflicts, and concerns.

The Steps Towards Completing Career Exploration Process

Step One: Preliminary Assessment

Parents must gain access to computerized, online, or paper/pencil career assessments. From these assessments, parents, teens, and children gain knowledge and understanding of our abilities, ambitions, aptitudes, identities, interests, life goals, resources, skills, and values. During this assessment period, parents will evaluate children’s and teens’ readiness for career planning.

Gary W. Peterson and others of the Center for the Study of Technology in Counseling and Career Development University Center, discussed the differences in career planning readiness. Children, teen, and adults can be categorized as:

Decided

Decided yet needing a confirmation

Decided yet not knowing how to implement their decisions

Decided choosing to avoid conflict or stress

Undecided

Undecided with a deferred choice

Undecided yet developmental unable to commit to a decision

Undecided and unable to make a decision because the individual is multi-talented

Children, teen, and adults transition from indecision to decisiveness when they complete the following steps in the career decision making and planning process.

Step Two: Educational and Occupational Exploration

Parents, children, and teens gather information about:

Educational choices

The benefits of educational achievement

The economy or labor market

Occupational choices

Specific occupations and programs of study

Training opportunities

The relationship between work and learning

Positive attitudes towards work and learning

Personal responsibility and good work habits

A typical working day for a specific occupation

Career exploration systems

Step Three: Problem solving

Parents, children, and teens solve career problems by:

Identifying educational and career planning obstacles

Creating solutions or courses of action

Setting achievable goals

Resolving conflict and tension

Making a commitment to reach our God-given potential

Problem solving should take into consideration personal values, interests, skills, and financial resources. Big problems are broken down into smaller, more manageable steps. Achievable goals result in the production of new competencies, attitudes, solutions, as well as educational and training opportunities.

Step Four: Goal Setting and Decision Making

As individuals, parents, children, and teens:

Set, formulate, prioritize, and rank goals

Clearly state our vocational interests, abilities, and values

Derive plans or strategies to implement the solutions

Make a commitment to complete the plans

Understand decision-making processes

Evaluate the primary choice

Consider a secondary occupational choice, if necessary

Decision-making processes include:

Developing learning and career plans

Identifying suitable occupations

Selecting appropriate educational programs

Figuring the costs of educational training

Considering the impact of career decisions.

Step Five: Implementation

While implementing and executing our learning and career plans, parents, children, and teens translate vocational interests, abilities, and skills into occupational possibilities. Parents, children, and teens do reality testing through interviewing current workers, job shadowing, part-time employment, full-time employment, and volunteer work. Parents, children, and teens obtain skill training, for example, social skills, resume writing, networking, and preparations for interviews.

Career Planning Resources

In order to assess gifts, talents, and abilities, parents, children, and teens need career resources. Career planning resources include books, videotapes, audio-tapes, games, workshops, self-assessment inventories, career exploration web-sites, and computer-assisted career guidance programs. These resources are found at libraries, community colleges, and resource centers.

The basis for most of the resources is the National Career Development Guidelines. In 1987, the National Occupational Information Coordinating Committee (NOICC) developed The National Career Development Guidelines. The guidelines were organized into three areas: Self-knowledge, Educational and Occupational Exploration, and Career Planning.

Self-knowledge deals with our self-concept, interpersonal skills, growth, and development.

Educational and occupational exploration reveals the relationships between learning, work, career information skills, job seeking, skill development, and the labor market.

Career planning includes self-assessment, career exploration, decision making, life role formation, goal setting, and the implementation of career choices.

Conclusion

We are each significant, different, and special. Yet, God knows our gifts, talents, and abilities. God has chosen us for special positions and tasks. Our occupations should reflect the callings that God has placed in our lives. Our vocations represent the gifts given to us by God. Our destinies come from God. Parents help children and teens discover God-given talents, abilities, and interests so that children and teens can fulfill God’s purpose for their lives.

As parents, we will use prayer, the Word of God, other books, videotapes, audio-tapes, games, workshops, training materials, self-assessment inventories, career web-sites, computer-assisted career guidance programs, and resource centers to assist us in helping our children, and teens.

References

Miller, Juliet V. (1992) The National Career Development Guidelines, Eric Digest ED347493, ERIC Clearinghouse on Counseling and Personnel Services, Ann Arbor, Michigan

Peterson, G., W., Sampson, J., P., Jr., Reardon, R., C., and Lenz, J., G. (1996) A Cognitive Approach to Career Development and Services, Center for the Study of Technology in Counseling and Career Development, University Center, Suite A4100, Florida State University, Tallahassee, Florida 32306-1035, http://www.fsu.edu/ ~career/techcenter/html

Accept, Survive & Thrive

Have you ever thought about how you would feel if you woke up one day and didn’t know why you were, wherever you were? I’m not talking about waking up after overindulging in some substance or forgetting where you slept. I’m asking if you’ve ever been betrayed by your memories. Suddenly, you find that you are unable to do, what you remember you could do. Your life terrifies you; you trust no one and you can’t remember needing the assistance that you now require. How do you continue? What do you have to do differently now and in the future? Is doing all you can worth the struggle?

Over forty-five years ago, in November of 1971, I was an active, liberal rebellious college student. I was very social, well organized, goal oriented and fiercely independent with just the right touch of passive aggressive resistance to authority figures. I remember laughing a lot and handling stress without much thought or anxiety. I could manage multiple demands with ease. In the fall of that year, my world collapsed. I was a passenger in a car that was involved in a head-on collision in the Ann Arbor area. In that split second, my career changed from one of a college student to an entry-level position in the field of brain injury recovery.

I got an impressive set of credentials that afternoon. My right wrist was crushed; both of my eyes would never again work together and I sustained a severe closed head/brain stem injury. Fortunately, the driver of the other car was a doctor who immediately began mouth-to-mouth resuscitation to restore my breathing. I was rushed to the University Hospital in Ann Arbor, where I was placed on life support.

In 1972, I was concerned with learning to walk without using furniture for support, go up and down stairs, cook my own meals and set my hair. Things that I unconsciously do today, were very difficult and required deliberate efforts. I could only do one thing at a time. I couldn’t eat and carry on a conversation at the same time. I used to hesitate between groups of words so often, that I was told I sounded retarded. I didn’t like that at all. So, I started listening to how people in the mainstream talked and I copied them. I also had no idea of how to interact with anyone after my injury. So, I watched how others did that wherever I went. I chose role models from the people I like and respected.

I decided to be the kind of person who got treated the way I wanted to be treated. Somehow, I knew that I had to treat others the way I wanted to be treated. I’m not going to talk about my trials returning to school, trying to work and getting fired repeatedly. And I’m not going to discuss my seizure, sleeping and breathing disorders. Those circumstances are simply facts of my life. The important question is what do I do now?

Today, I work as a Trauma Recovery Expert/Disability Life Coach. Quite logically, you might want to ask me how I managed to accomplish all of this. First, I’d have to say that I lead an interdependent life and I’m comfortable asking for assistance when I need it. Then, I’d say that I’m aware of the activities that deplete my energy and I try not to do them very often. I know what I do well and I know when I need to ask for help. Lastly, I would make it crystal clear; that I do all that I can and ask for assistance only when it is necessary.

Now, I will mention some of my difficulties and the success strategies I use to overcome them. The first is a problem I confront daily and that is my fatigue — so, SUCCESS STRATEGY No. 1 is that I get adequate sleep and remain calm. Mornings are my best times and that’s when I try to schedule any appointments or activities.

Another problem I have is with organization of everything. That’s a skill that I find to be extremely difficult to master and that brings me to SUCCESS STRATEGY No. 2. I do one thing at a time and what is necessary first. I must finish what I start, before moving on to another project. In other words, I’ve learned to prioritize.

I also have energy challenges. I have difficulty with stamina and endurance. My stamina is dependent on the time of day, and my interest in the activity in which I’m engaged – so, SUCCESS STRATEGY No. 3 is that I need to be cognizant of how I’m eating, sleeping, exercising, and how I’m taking my medications.

I must address my health issues at least three times each day. It’s inconvenient to have to take multiple prescriptions many times a day — That brings me to SUCCESS STRATEGY #4 and that is; to just do it. I take lots of pills and I use two medication organizers to help me remember when to take, which drugs. I simply empty the designated part of the organizer into my hand and take the prescribed medication. If I want to live as well as I can, be free from pain, not have seizures and get a good night’s sleep, I take what my doctors advise.

Earlier I mentioned a success strategy that I use. I spoke of treating other people the way I want to be treated. I call this SUCCESS STRATEGY #5. I get along better with others, when I treat them with respect. That applies to everyone, from doctors, to health care workers, to the people who provide me with services.

The final problem I’m going to speak of is the one I have with my memory. I forget things; I put something somewhere and then, absolutely forget where I put it. I miss appointments or things I know I want to do — So SUCCESS STRATEGY #6 is to use notepads & calendars. Along with these tools, I leave myself reminder messages in places where I know that I’ll see them, like the back of my front door, on my refrigerator or kitchen table.

I’ve lived with my difficulties for over 45 years and I’ve learned that I need a plan to win the war with my problems. Just like any war, I need to have a BATTLE PLAN. Mine is;

1. It’s best to confront rather than avoid my problems.

2. I think of myself as having a battle with the deficits created by my injury, my disability, my illness and my age. There are some things I just can’t do as well as I once did. For instance, I’m not as coordinated as I used to be and I don’t move as quickly or manage stress, as well as I did in the past.

3. I cannot allow myself to remain ignorant of my difficulties. When I familiarize myself with the difficulties that might occur, my stress seems to be reduced as well as my fear and anxiety about life with all my problems.

When I no longer need to be afraid of what might happen, I’m able to better prepare for the options, or what the health care professionals choose to call, compensatory strategies that I need to make. I choose to call them, Success Strategies. I have learned that for me to make changes, I need to have goals. Those goals must be realistic and attainable. I recognize my difficulties in the here and now. When bringing about genuine change, I need to make a sustained effort.

My experiences have taught me that it takes determination, effort and time to modify my behavior. While it’s important to set reasonable expectations, and be respectful of the reality of my situation, I feel that I must never lose sight of what I hope to achieve.

One statement that I like and helps me to feel good about myself is; RECOVERY IS NOT ONLY MAKING PROGRESS, it is TAKING ONE STEP! It doesn’t matter where I start, doing anything to make my life better is making progress.

How do I win the war against the residuals of my problems?

I have learned that I must accept what I absolutely can’t do, before I will allow myself to learn the skills necessary to do what I want to do. Then, I need to remember that every day and every task is different. Just because I can do something today, at one time doesn’t mean I’ll be able to repeat that process on another day or at another time.

After a trauma, an illness or an addiction, life becomes an uphill battle in all situations. Whether it’s dealing with doctors, drug companies, mental health and rehabilitation professionals, or any other support staff, living as an independent, self-sufficient human being is simply no longer possible. There are countless adjustments, accommodations and modifications that need to be made, to ensure the possibility that a quality life will be realized.

Now, let’s bust some myths about living with challenges. First, true independence is simply no longer a possibility. Total dependence on anything is undesirable. A mixture of both, independence or self-sufficiency and dependence or getting assistance when needed, becomes your new normal. Being interdependent with your environment becomes a new success strategy.

What you believe about yourself defines who you are. Who you believe you are, is who you are. You form your beliefs about yourself early in life. Your core beliefs form the context out of which all else evolves. If you believe yourself to be competent, you will behave in ways that reflect and strengthen competence. Conversely, if you believe yourself to be inadequate, your behavior will reflect inadequacy. If your self-concept is negative, you will probably remain in a state of needing to improve.

People experience a fundamental belief system shift when they face a life-threatening crisis. They suddenly see their priorities in a different order, their values change, their thinking about themselves shifts, and their feelings are modified. Everything seems to change.

Recovery to a person with an injury, a disability or an illness is making progress. Making progress is ACCEPTING your deficits, learning success “strategies to help you with those deficits, and learning to love and value yourself.”

Is it Worth the Struggle? I say YES, it is!

By Nancy Bauser, ACSW, BCETS, BCDT, CPC

The Four Most Important Words Your Players Will Ever Know

In an April 14th 2008 Sports Illustrated feature New Orleans Hornet forward, David West, spoke out about quitting his high school basketball team. “When I lived in New Jersey, I had problems with my coach. I wasn’t the quickest guy or the strongest guy. I could play, but because I wasn’t the type you’d look at and say, he’s going to be great, my coach wrote me off. He said I couldn’t do this, I couldn’t do that. When you’re a young kid, you get broken”.

Fortunately David West had the fortitude and strength to continue with his basketball career where most kids would have permanently given up and quit the game. You see, there are few words that have a greater impact on a player than the words I believe in you. These powerful words have incredible meaning and will change your players’ lives not only athletically, but also as members of our community. Coaches need to institutionalize these four powerful words into their everyday interactions with their players both in terms of verbal and non-verbal communications for positive player motivation. When we believe in ourselves incredible things happen. When others, especially our coaches, believe in us, magic occurs. These words, I believe in you, are equally important to adults and children.

I have seen this magic work over and over in my coaching career and usually without fail. My first experience witnessing the power of these words was while coaching a 12 year old little league team in the championship game. Justin came to bat in the bottom of the sixth needing a hit for our team to win the game. I could see nothing but fear in his eyes. I calmly told him I had been planning the entire season for this very moment. I told him I knew he would be in this position and that is why all season long we had been working on his hitting and why he was now one of the best hitters on the team. (I think Justin had two hits all year). Looking deep into his eyes, I said, I believe in you and “you are going to watch the bat hit the ball into right field” describing the expected outcome. I told him several times to see the bat hit the ball and each time he told me he could see himself getting a hit. More and more confident, this moment became the defining point of Justin and our season. Justin hit the first pitch between first and second base allowing the tying and winning runs to score and Justin became his teammates’ instant hero. I know this story sounds hopelessly corny and some would say this hit was pure chance, but I know otherwise. Those special words, I believe in you, made a connection with Justin and I’m sure he still remembers his incredible game today. Positive coaching methods do make a difference!

Much has been said about Tiger Woods and his astonishing ability to focus, but where would he be if his parents and coaches hadn’t believed in him? I believe his self-confidence and focus manifested itself partially as a result of how much other people believed in him. Tiger didn’t have people telling him he couldn’t play golf, rather his entire support system told him he was the best young golfer in the world. From my previous articles you know that you achieve what you focus on and if his focus was to become the best golfer in the world, no one was going to stop him. His father had so much confidence in Tiger that at the age of two he arranged for him to appear on the Mike Douglas show with Bob Hope. I’m confident had Tiger’s support system been full of negative thoughts and energy, his future would be quite different today. Maybe that is why Earle Woods didn’t trust his son’s coaching to anyone else, because he knew no one could believe in Tiger more than himself.

In February 2006, I coached the Sunnyslope High School JV Baseball Team. Sunnyslope had a great baseball program and while its Freshman and Junior Varsity programs performed very well year after year, something happened that prevented these young players from replicating their success at the Varsity level. For a team that won a state championship 10 years earlier, morale and player confidence were low. With a 12 member team including three freshman of over-achievers, we were able to beat some of the more successful and powerful programs in the state. We did so by creating a strong belief system and environment where all players believed in themselves and were given the freedom to make mistakes without fear of public criticism. Our daily coaching focused on creating individual player belief and on what we wanted them to do through positive affirmations and instructions. Although they did not win all of their games, they won far more than they should have. Sadly, two years later there was only one player from that Junior Varsity team still with the program even though they all still had a love for the game of baseball.

I believe as the players matured through the program the game stopped being fun and the coaches started micro managing the players’ every move. The small technical changes being made created a lack of self-confidence and player doubt. Instead of creating a positive focus and belief system in the players, the coaches’ negative energy became a team cancer. One of the most talented players (a freshman) from the previous season quit the team his sophomore year within the first few weeks of practice because of the coaches’ negative focus and baseball no longer being fun. Coaches who create programs with a positive focus and energy level for their players will always achieve more satisfactory results because the game will be more rewarding.

In many sports, a coach’s philosophy after a loss is often, “I will show you that you need to play better”, and players run laps or sprints so the coach can demonstrate his superiority over his players, thus motivating them to win. Research demonstrates that discipline based motivation seldom works, yet coaches repeat it over and over. A much more effective yet difficult motivation practice is the use of positive reinforcement strategies (recognition and reward systems) for player and team motivation. Most coaches view this approach to be too soft in the trenches of sports, yet it provides for a more lasting and effective means for improving on field performance. By using this method coaches improve team morale, player self-confidence, and game enjoyment which transcends to improved on-field performance. And a player who believes in himself, like a young Justin or Tiger Woods, with a strong I believe in you focus, will go on to accomplish great things.

Reentering The Workforce

You’ve been home raising a family, or maybe you have been retired? But lately you have had thoughts of breaking back into the workforce. It’s been a while since you have been in a paying job, and you may be worried that you might no longer be marketable, or don’t feel as confident with the thought of interviews, as you use to be. Don’t fear! This article will boost your confidence and get you ready to have the business opportunities come to you!

Many jobs today require computer skills, so you may want to brush up on rusty skills or look into taking a computer course.

Start listing all the skills you have acquired over your life- time. Many life skills give you quality skills to use in the work force – like time management, typing, financial skills, etc … Think about the type of work you would like to do and compare them with your experiences. There will probably be gaps, don’t fret – now is the time to fill in those gaps. You will be surprised at how many things you can self-learn on the computer.

If you’re a professional who has kept abreast of developments in your field, you’re ahead of the game. If not, find out what refresher courses are offered by professional organizations, local colleges and adult education programs. Brushing up takes time, so it helps to start thinking about your return to the workforce well in advance.

Talk to an instructor or school advisor about the best way to get your skills up to speed quickly. If you need immediate work, you may have to take another type of job while you’re attending classes. If you are retired and considering going back to work, remember any earnings may reduce your benefits, so you may want to contact the Social Security office before hand.

Your resume needs to make a good first impression. Make sure it’s organized. Here are the basic elements of a good resume:

A Header- Include a name, address, and phone number.

An Objective- Describe the type of job you are seeking.

Abilities and Accomplishments- By highlighting functions you have performed ahead of a time line of your employment history, you can emphasize your abilities and non-work experience, rather than the time between your last job and the present.

Work Experience- List employers, job titles, the dates worked, and a description of what you did, including significant accomplishments. Include volunteer work as if it were a regular job.

Education- List the most recent diploma or degree you have earned or are working toward, the date of graduation, your field of study. Include continuing education or refresher courses.

Skills- List computer and language skills or other skills that may be relevant to the job for which you are applying.

Honor and Activities- List awards you have received, clubs or organizations you belong to and activities you participate in. But don’t get carried away. It’s more important to have a small amount of strong information well presented, then a long list of irrelevant activities.

References- Include the notation, “References available upon request.”

About Acapulco

Mexico’s first great resort destination, Acapulco is a stunningly beautiful city located around a bay on the Pacific Ocean, with miles of easily-accessible beaches. It’s truly in the tropics, with palm trees and other exotic plants everywhere. Views across the bay are gorgeous, the sunsets are legendary, and the city lights at night are lovely from every vantage point.

What to do? Swimming (but note that some beaches have rough surf and undertows), working on your tan, eating and drinking at the wide variety of restaurants and clubs… and staying up late (or all night) to go dancing at the discos. Scuba diving, fishing, boating, and other water sports are available, as are golf courses and tennis courts. The shopping is great fun, though don’t expect the best bargains in Mexico in this tourist-oriented city. Famous divers jump off extremely high cliffs into the sea at La Quebrada… that’s something to watch, not to do! Most of all, Acapulco is a place to relax.

I’ve been to Acapulco both as a child and as an adult. Of course, the city has changed a lot; the quaint little motel just a block from the beach where we stayed when I was a kid is long gone, replaced with newer, taller buildings.

I adored the city as a child, and I continue to like its natural beauty and its beaches. Though it is now a huge city and very tourist-oriented, I still think Acapulco is an outstanding place for a beach vacation. The glittering celebrities are more likely to go to the newer resorts — Cancun and others that were small towns or fishing ports when Acapulco was the rising star.

If you explore the central market and other places away from the obvious main tourist areas, you can get a real connection with the people. Many of the tourists nowadays are Mexican, and you can chat with them on the beach. Don’t speak Spanish? No problem! Smiles go a long way, and many Mexicans know some English.

The weather in Acapulco is very nice all winter, hot and humid in the summer. Good thing the beach is there!

How To KiteSurf

You have been bitten by the KiteSurfing bug, you can’t wait to hit the first current to propel your body screaming 40-feet into the air and crashing into the water. With each gusts of wind your elevated high off the surface and breaking each wave as you land. The thrill associated with the sport of KiteSurfing has many able-bodied thrill seekers flocking to the beaches across the world to set sail and fly across the top of the ocean.

But before you could set your feet in the water you will need to know how to KiteSurf, if you have surfed or have sail surfed you have an immediate advantage to understand how to maneuver your board, however when KiteSurfing your feet will move a little and your arms and hands are the only thing holding you to the kite, your feet are attached to the board.

Most rookie KiteSurfers have accidents because they have trouble calculating distance and variable levels of speed that the kites can create by a gust of wind. Learning to KiteSurf through instruction and practice is by far the best way to learn and experience the heart-pounding action and gravity-defying jumps.

As with any sport there are safety precautions you should adhere to.

You must be a good swimmer.   Swimming  entails that if your kite flies away from you, you may have to  swim  after the handles or  swim  back to shore. Depending how far out you have gone on your board this may not be such an easy task.

You can be carded or rated by a professional instructor. This will help you understand the risks as well as the conditions that are appropriate for your time out on the water. Your instructor should be certified by the IKO, International KiteSurfing Organization. Never go out with a friend, it could prove disastrous.

You should always wear a helmet. Like bicycle laws they are encouraged in some countries and mandatory in others. Your head is the most delicate part of your body, if you crash into the sea at a high-rate of speed or run into rocks your chances of suffering head trauma can be disabling.

Watch the weather conditions. It is important to understand the weather and the effects of strong wind and how it can play havoc on avid KiteSurfers.

Other guidelines you will learn along the way will be important and somewhat common knowledge but it is good to go over the basics to make sure you and the people around you remain safe as you launch.

· Never launch kites in crowded  swimming  areas
· Do not lay your lines out along the beach
· Whenever possible try not to launch kite from the sand
· Be willing to help KiteSurfers as they re-enter the beach
· When making jumps in the water, measure the downwind zone
· If you can not  swim  far distances avoid going deep into the ocean
· Use your self-rescue signals when killing power to the kite
· Always wear a life-jacket or a buoyancy jacket.

By following the simple rules you can keep yourself as well as those around you safe during launch and re-entry to the beach.

The History and Purpose of Toys

Since the beginning of time Mothers have been trying to find ways to occupy their children. Therefore it is no surprise that toys have been around since the beginning of time. The natural playfulness and curiosity of children make toys a natural progression. For instance a child’s imagination can figure out, how to make a game out of, and play with anything.

A child can occupy themselves making roads in the dirt, making castles out of sand, or just digging a little hole, which can create tunnels and other mysterious places. Sea shells, rocks, pine cones or what ever else is available can become a handy toy. In spite of a child’s unique creativeness parents throughout time have tried to reward and entertain their children with toys.

Ancient Egyptians created balls from leather and dried papyrus reeds. They also created marbles out of black and white stones. There were many Egyptian dolls as well. Some were made from leather and papyrus; many were carved out of wood, bone, or ivory. Some even had jointed limbs and moveable jaws. The less affluent would fashion dolls and figurines out of clay.

They even created spinning tops, and had many different physical games, with balls and sticks and wrestling. They also enjoyed board games such as Mehen and Senet. Ancient Roman toys were similar. They had balls and games played with hoops and sticks. Wooden swords and shields were also popular for simulated battle games.

Like the Egyptians the Romans enjoyed board games and marbles. They also created dolls and figurines out of wood, wax, and terra cotta. Similarly the inhabitants of early Greece enjoyed wooden horses on wheels pulled by strings, terra cotta dolls, clay animals, baby rattles, and primitive yo-yos.

I found a New York Times article from 1902 that was about the big Christmas toys of that year. They were new automobile toys, some were metal wind up editions, and some were more elaborate expensive toy automobiles that adults were purchasing. The other big toy hits of that year were toy submarine boats and flying machines.

Baby dolls have been popular throughout the centuries. But in 1960 the first Barbie fashion doll was introduced. Other great toys from the 1960’s were slinkies, colour forms, the view master, etch-a-sketch, lite brite, spirograph, the Fort Apache play set, Marvel the Mustang, and too many more to mention.

Many of these toys are still popular today. Plus we have some new toys. Besides the great strides made in electronics and video games, we have Bakugan Battle Brawlers. Barbie is still around but she is joined by the Bratz, Moxie Girlz, and Liv Dolls. There are tons of new board games and action figures. Plus the classic games and toys of the past are still around and being improved upon.

In spite of changes in time and technology the basic premise of play has remained unchanged. Toys have always been used to stimulate the imagination and keep children occupied and entertained. No matter how much time passes parents will never grow tired of seeing a child’s face light up when presented with a new toy.

Recipe To Make Natural Homemade Sexual Lubricant

Sexual lubricants are used in order to reduce the friction and add moisture between the two moving objects such as human reproductive organs or sex toys. While sexual lubricants are commonly available in drug stores, adult book stores, and novelty shops and even in some departmental stores, it becomes quite hard for people to choose the right sexual lubricant for them at times. For this purpose, it is refreshing news that sexual lubricants or lubes can be prepared at home by day to day accessories and ingredients. Preparation methods for these lubricants are easy and not very complex. They do not take a lot of time and should be stored in clean and sterilised containers in order to avoid the growth of any bacteria which might cause diseases and infections.

Preparation method

In order to prepare sexual lubricants at home one must follow certain fixed recipes. A mixture of four teaspoons of cornstarch or potato starch and a cup full of water should be taken in a bowl. If you are planning on replicating flavoured lubricants which are available in the market then you can add flavoured extracts from certain products according to your own tastes. A few drops of flavoured extracts should suffice for adding flavour to your lubricants. Following this, take the mixture in a pot and boil it for a few minutes before pulling down the heat and allowing it to simmer. Stir the mixture in order to remove lumps and make it smooth. The process is completed once the mixture cools down and is smooth.

Storing

In order to store the home made lubricants you can use boxes, jars or containers with lids. Even bowls which have tight lids can be used in order to store the mixtures. Transfer the sexual lubricant into your storage medium and put the lid on tightly. While there are some home made lubricant recipes which need to be stored in refrigerators, this particular recipe must not be stored in a refrigerator since it is susceptible to forming a skin like layer on top which is unfavourable to your needs. If you are lacking a lid then you can use a plastic wrap as a cover and store the prepared lubricant at room temperature. Make sure that the container, bowl or jar you use is properly cleaned and sterilised before storing the lubricant in it so as to avoid any bacteria which might cause infections and diseases.

Top Ten Web Browser Games

In the last few years, we have seen an increase in the use of Internet for the everyday task. Hence, agenda, encyclopedia, shopping, movies, games and even university classes can be all found online. This is because the Internet is so accessible to everyone, and reduces the cost of nearly everything. This is especially true regarding games. Consoles are still very popular, but due to the high cost of a single video games, more and more people opt for web browser games, which are often free, or allow the user to play at a minimal cost. Online games can appeal to a variety of people and there are thousands of web browser games on the internet catered to different groups of people. These is my top ten web browser games.

1. Club Penguin

Owned by Disney, this MMORPG (massively multiplayer online role-playing game) caters to a younger crowd. In this game, children get to play different activities and games. Club Penguin is designed for children 6 to 14 years of age but is open to all ages. Some parents even admitted they love to play the games too.

2. SwitchIn

The social network based game SwitchIn is played by teenagers from over the world. Translated in 8 different languages, this MMO integrates two concepts:a chat room and a cool 3D online game. Players can dress up their character, customize their room, chat with other players and even go horseback riding by the beach!

3. Habbo

Habbo caters to both male and female teenagers. This MMO, or massively multiplayer online game, attracts each week almost seven million unique visitors. Players interact using their personalized character and can design a room in a virtual hotel and invest virtual money to furnish it.

4. Bejeweled

This puzzle games created in 2001 has become so popular that it lead to sequels: Bejeweled 2 (2004) and Bejeweled Twist (2008). Beware, a very fun but addictive game!

5. Tribal Wars

The strategy browser based game Tribal Wars is a game set in the medieval times. The goal of this game is to lead a small village, and to let it flourish into a powerful city.

6. Miniconomy

Not only fun, Miniconomy is a very educative game. As a matter of fact, this game is even been used in some business schools from the Netherlands and Belgium. The goal of the game is to simulate an economic society, by trading, starting a career and even creating a corporation!

7. Sudoku

Who said high-resolution graphics were needed to make a successful game? The popular skill-based game Sudoku makes thousands of people happy every day. While it was first created over a hundred years ago, it wasn’t until the late 2000 that Sudoku became popular. The advantage of Sudoku? You can play online, or on paper!

8. DiveIn

Imagine   swimming  as a creature of an undersea world. Sharks, dolphins and even mermaids are only a few of the many creatures you can magically transform into.  Swim  and discover an pirate ship and other sea creatures while chatting with your buddies.

9. Neopets

The cutest game ever. Take care of a virtual pet, buy them food and toys.

10. Farmville

Developed for Facebook, a popular social networking website, Farmville has become quickly one of its most popular application. In the game, the player simulates a farmer’s life by planting, growing and harvesting virtual crops and raising livestock.

Frozen Emotions Means Anxiety

How does a person get emotionally frozen? When all their feelings and emotions are trapped deep, down inside and act as a one big aching pain in their body? Crying acts like a release for these emotions but when you can’t cry your body cries out for release.

In some ways it is one of the most painful thing anyone can live through. To go through their days and nights with all this pain trapped deep down inside of them. When a loved one dies and you can’t get the emotion’s out.

Of course, the emotion has to come out in some kind of way, maybe in headaches, pain in various parts of your body or in dizziness. The worst part is anxiety. You feel and appear anxious and when you get nervous

or stressed the anxiety becomes unbearable. It takes over your mind and body and soon you can’t function.

Sleeping is a thing of the past. Your mind runs and runs, and do you really remember what you were thinking about all those hours when you should have been sleeping?

The next step is seeing a Psychiatrist and taking anxiety medication which may or may not work. The side effects, if you read the papers which come along with each prescription bottle are pages long. You can’t win for losing.

What can you do when this happens to you?

1. Sports where you are moving your body is good.

2. Swimming is fabulous it really works your entire body including your mind.

3. Water aerobics is a little different from swimming. It tones your body into a sculptured piece of art.

4. Walking by yourself or with a friend is also very therapeutic.

5. Paint a room in your house. Make it colorful. You will get physical exercise and boost your self-esteem.

6. Take your dog for a good long walk. Stop and talk to the neighbors. You might meet neighbors who have lived in your neighborhood for years and never met before.

7. Talk to a therapist.

8. Join a support group.

9. Write about it. You do not need to share it with anybody just for yourself.

10. Try deep breathing. It really helps calm you down.

The object here is to keep your mind and body busy so you won’t think of all the pain trapped in your body. Someday something might happen out of the blue that you see or read and the water works will start.

Release of all the emotions trapped in your body will come tumbling out. But until that happens to you try the above suggestions or add your own. Everybody has some kind of hobby or interest they can get lost in. Get lost in yours.

Thank you for reading my article. Please feel free to read any of the various articles I have written on numerous subjects in the past years.

Linda E. Meckler

Copyright 2010