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Starting the Year Simple: 5 Reasons to Hop on the Minimalism Wagon

58e638dd1e2f7.imageThe consumer-driven trend behind buying and accumulating clothes, shoes, purses, toys, home supplies and other items for no reason to then gradually give it all away is out the window.  

As you most likely heard everyone is talking about minimalism. There a tons of documentaries about it, blogs, Youtube videos, posts, you name it. But for those who are new to the world of minimalism, it’s not just a Pinterest board, it’s a lifestyle.

It’s basically the idea that the less you have, the better you’ll be. There are various benefits associated. We put together a little list of the benefits to see if we get you all to be minimalistic mommies and daddies.

DISCLAIMER: Read at your own risk, minimalism get obsessive.

  1. More Happy

Through advertising, TV commercials, Instagram posts, and other avenues, large corporations convince us to buy their products. I’m at fault too. I want everything I see, the long boots, fuzzy pillow, mini cactus, and the cute mugs with quotes. I mean, we’ve been taught that the more we have the happier we are, but happy is a state of mind associated with experiences, not material. Once we realize this, then we’ll be able to make smarter decision before shopping another item we won’t need.

  1. More Space

Did you know that the average American household has over 300,000 stuffs in it? Furniture, paintings, plates, linens, pictures, and memories. Once we get rid of those extra things we don’t need, or keep around “just in case” and just keep the bare minimum, we end up with some desiring space. More space in our home, rooms, cabinets, cars, purses, etc.

  1. More Money

The average American today has over $16,000 of credit card debt. Simplifying makes your wallet happier. When we downsize our belongings, whether that is wardrobes, electronics, shoes, and other stuffs, the next time we purchase an item, we think twice about it. The less we buy, the more money we’ll save.

  1. More to Give

If you decide is time to declutter, as you get rid of things, think about what things you can donate. Not everything we want to get rid off is garbage. Sharing those valuables that brought so much joy with others could be very rewarding.  

  1. More Time

The less things we have,the less time we have to spend cleaning and organizing. Think about how much time we spent washing tons of dishes, or clothes, fixing up messes. Minimalistics moms have more time to be more productive, spend more quality time with the family, try a new business venture or hobby.

Being minimalist parents just means being more practical parents  with more space at home to move around, think and breathe. More money to spend it on things you always wanted to do like family vacations or new hobbies to save and spend it on experiences, more items to donate and give to other. Also more time on our hands to learn new things or practice our hobbies and with all these be more happy. Try it, why not? God Bless.

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Tips for Moms Looking to Start their own Business this New Year

startup-photos

This 2018, just do it! Don’t even think about it. It’s going to be tough, but you knew that. Just imagine a hectic nightmare with coffee, meetings and diapers in the beginning, but the end product can be a strong business owner able to have her own schedule and be involved in their children’s development.

Business owner mommies are known for one main common characteristic, ready?

The capacity of being able to M-U-L-T-I-T-A-S-K!

When it comes to having success in business, there are many different things that can be integral factors. Hollywood Learning Centers put together 3 advices for our mommies thinking of starting their own business:

1) Find What Motivates You:

If you are going to be crazy enough to add a business to your already hectic mother schedule, then it should be something you absolutely love. The thing you loved doing during your free time. Do you even know what that is? If you don’t remember, picture waking up one day with nothing to do. You get up, make yourself a cup a coffee and then to do what…? Well, whatever that is, that’s your business.

If you image yourself changing into gym clothes to work out, then research what business are on demand in the world of fitness. If you see yourself going to the mall, is there a product you see yourself designing or creating yourself? If you love interactions with others, is there a service you could provide with your God-given talents or is there something that doesn’t exist that you wish you could create?

I mean, the possibilities are endless.

2) Create a System that Works

Processes are real. They dictate the way we do things and why we do them. If you have a strong support system at home, take time figuring out when would it be best to work.

Husbands, friends, siblings can help in the process. Schools, aftercare programs and reliable childcare institutions like Hollywood Learning Center, for example, is open 7 AM to 6 PM, which works great for hard-working mothers. A schedule will vary from family to family. Also there are so many free automotive business softwares to help free your time; whether you are looking to invoice, account management, budgeting, social media marketing, email marketing, etc.

3) Ditch Bad Associations

We don’t have that much time anyways. However, if we do decided to keep friends around, make sure to surround yourself with people who will uplift and contribute to where you’re headed. Entrepreneur mommies need all the cheering and motivation possible. Avoid negativity, jealousy and others who don’t believe you are capable.

Many entrepreneurs involve family members in the process, why not? Involve the children or your significant other. They can help decide which route to take, business’ naming, logos’ colors, etc. Make them part of the journey.

And bring your kids over to Hollywood Learning Centers’ while you go out and conquer the world! May God bless your efforts.

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“Gimme, Gimme” vs. Giving, Giving

School_BlogOver the last few days we have witness hurricane disasters so now more than ever is important to talk to our children about the power of giving and contributing.  Hollywood Learning Centers, a preschool for little ones in Hollywood, FL put together a list of 5 ways to teach our children to be more giving.

Start When they are Small.

It’s never to early to start. We can’t expect to teach children to be giving in their teens. We have to start when they are young. Even small deeds count.  Parent can begin by instilling sharing habits. This is easier when the children has siblings, but if not parents can try with other family members.

Is your child easy to share toys or his food and snacks with others? Test them, see what their answers are. If it’s what you were expecting, continue to encourage them to share and give to others. Complement and even reward their efforts. Your young child might be happy to help bake cookies for friends or children in need. However, If your child is less likely to give, try to understand them and see where this is coming from. Instead of getting upset with them or punishing them, talk to them about the importance of giving and make a plan to instill empathy in them.

  • Reality Checks

Seeing commercials of poor children or other disadvantaged groups might not the reality check our kids need. If those don’t work, it’s best to take them to see why giving is important.

Take a ride to deprived area with a high number of homeless or to an orphanage for our children to learn why we must share and donate to others (books, toys, clothes, etc). This will not only make those kids extremely happy, but it will teach our children about having empathy towards those children and eventually empathy towards everyone in need as they grow up.

  • Walk the walk

My family has always been one to give. Coming from a poor country teaches you to appreciate and share the blessings given. Be a role model for your little ones. As you know, children love to imitate their parents. If they see us volunteering or donating, they will do it. The passion and dedication we put into giving and sharing to others will reach their little hearts. Not only will they be proud of you but they would follow your lead.

  • Give Year-round

We don’t always have to wait for a disaster to take place to give. Of course earthquake and hurricanes’ victims could use all the help in the world, but giving can be a year-round effort. There are plenty of opportunities to help. Here at Hollywood Learning Center we are always collecting items for disasters victims or feeding the homeless. Not much money or planning is required. When we don’t have a particular cause to donate or contribute to, we buy water and distribute them to the homeless on a hot day or buy dinner and go around looking for someone who might need it. The feeling you’ll get is so rewarding it’ll become a habit.

  • Simplify Giving

Some believe giving, donating or volunteering requires a lot of money or efforts and of course we are all busy parents who work and barely have time.That is not true! Giving can be fun.

For example, buying two bags of sandwich bread, 1 pound of ham and cheese would not even come to $10, but it can feed 24 people. Buying a pack of water for the same group of 24 cost $5. Yet, that might be too much for some families, in that case, we all have toys, books or clothes we no longer use but are still in good conditions. There are also groups that come together to help particular causes.

This week, Hollywood Learning Centers will be collecting items for those affected by Hurricane Irma and to help rebuild Florida’s paradise, The Keys.

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Hollywood Learning Centers Show Preschoolers to be More Giving this Holiday

3 Ways Hollywood Learning Centers Show Preschoolers to be More Giving this HolidayWith the holidays around the corner, toy commercials on Television reminds us it’s that time of the year again. Hollywood Learning Centers believes it’s the season to teach preschoolers about the real meaning of the holidays, family, and gratitude. As our preschoolers write their long gift lists this year, how about we teach them about the importance of giving rather than receiving.

  1. Remind Your Preschoolers How Privileged They Are. . .

It’s understandable that as parents, we want to protect our kids from the cruel realities of this world. Poverty, hunger, orphans, and natural disasters are difficult to explain to a child. Find scenarios to teach your little ones how fortunate they are compared to those experiencing hunger and sickness. As difficult as it might be to point these things out, at times it’s necessary. You can also include prayers before meals and at bed time to thank God for our blessings. Gratitude can make a huge difference in their lives, because where there is gratitude, there is no space for selfishness.

  1. A Preschooler’s Trash Is Another Preschooler’s Treasure

Most of us, children or adults, outgrow things to make room for what the new year brings. However, getting rid of our belongings sound easier said than done. My rule is, if they haven’t use it or wore it for a year, then most likely they won’t again. Make sure they get involved in the picking process. Explain to them that these objects will bring joy to less fortunate kids. There are several charities that make it easy to spread holiday cheer. Goodwill, Toys for Tots, Stuffed Animals for Emergencies are a few organizations that take new toys as well as gently used donations.

  1. It’s Okay to Tell Your Preschooler “No”

Even though you want to get them the entire gift list, try not to get in the habit of buying everything they ask. I have actually sat down to watch TV with my little stepson and saw toy commercial after toy commercial. Honestly, I got just as excited as he did. I even began to make notes of the toys we liked.  These marketers are good! As they grow, it’s important to teach our children to develop critical minds when exposed to the media, just like I did with the toy commercials. Remember, if they have it all then they won’t know what it feels like wanting and not having something.  

It’s a lot easier to give in to this material world we live in than to fight the urge to spoil them with every cent to our name. I dare you to try it. It might make all the difference when raising a generous child.

For more blogs, subscribe to: Hollywood Learning Centers’: Parenting Survival Guide.

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Hollywood Learning Centers Know The Importance of Teaching Multiculturalism

multicultural-blogHollywood Learning Centers picked the Hispanic Heritage Month to promote not just our hispanic community, but also all those beautiful cultures that makes us unique. We want to celebrate our diversity!

We look at each and everyone of our students’ here at Hollywood Learning Centers and see their ancestors’ diversity.  For that reason, we want to do something to learn about each other. Multicultural education promotes close working relationships among the school, home, and community in order to provide consistent expectations and mutual support. It is important to celebrate the diversity of cultures, ethnic backgrounds, and races of children around the world.

To give you a little background on our beautiful city of Hollywood, FL, where we’re all different. A recent census research suggest that although English is the first language with a 66.94%. Spanish language speaking residents account for 21.62%, French makes up 2.06%, Creole consisted of 1.32%, Italian comprised 1.12%, Romanian are at 0.91%, Hebrew at 0.88%, Portuguese 0.84%, and German as a mother tongue was 0.72% of the population.

Hollywood Learning Centers will like our preschool to promote multicultural awareness with our annual “Multicultural Food Festival” happening this Friday, October 14th.

The geography of our students’ countries, along with their popular cuisine, holidays, festivals, clothing, and language will be discussed and shared in a day full of food and traditional outfits runway.

Let’s teach our children about each other’s cultures by sharing a delicious dish and traditional attires so they understand how our differences make us unique!

introducing

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Parents! Back to School, Back to Reality!

Invitation for GraduationSchool is back and although it can be a bittersweet feeling for parents and children, it is something that has to be conquered nonetheless. Whether your child is going to their first day of preschool or their first day of kindergarten, they are going and as a parent you need to be prepared. So we have created a little guide on what parents can do to help transition from summer to school.

  1. Get involved! Starting school is like starting a brand new year. Why not get involved? See what opportunities your children’s school offer for you to volunteer or become a PTA mom. Evaluate your options rather than signing up right away. Try talking to other parents and figure out the best way to help out. Remember, the amount of time you volunteer isn’t a reflection of how much you love your kids. Do as much as your time allows you. Similarly, find ways to get your children involved. It’s the early childhood stage, that determines their passions in life. Hollywood Learning Centers offers extracurricular activities such as soccer, dance, tutoring and others. Call the office at (954)922-8558 for more information.
  1. Develop a Game Plan: This is a new (but long) journey in your child’s life, they will meet new friends and embrace new challenges, often time parents note transformational growth in their children during the school year. Discuss their goals for their academic year, what they want to accomplish in school and outside of school. If they want to learn a new language, how to play an instrument or simply make new friends. Help them make  a game plan. It is said that those who write their goals have a better chance of making them happen. Help them write their goals in a place that is visible or work on a vision board.
  1. Embrace “failure: It is important to set goals for your child, but do not be disappointed when some of these goals are not obtained. In this new journey there will be good days and bad days, and we have to learn to deal with both. Praise their efforts and teach them about perseverance. Starting the first day of preschool, second grade, or eight grade is equally scary. New materials, homework, teachers, routines, etc.

Back to school can be nerve racking and stressful. But keep in mind our small tips, and embrace every moment of the new school year. Fortunately kids are pretty resilient, so they get back into the swing of things better than parents do.

For more parenting survival tips, keep checking out our blog.

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How Rude! Secrets to Teach Our Children Manners

pexels-photo-kidTeachings manners can be a difficult task for many parents, not only because of the components associated with discipline, but also because of parents’ hectic schedules. However, manners can go a long way, especially past a simple “thank you.”

Focusing on etiquette and knowing your children have manners can help them establish positive relationships as children and adults, and contribute to their overall success. For that reason we created a guide to teach our child manners (according by age) with the help of Disney’s Babble.

 

Infants(0-1 Years): Please and Thank You’s:

When speaking to our little ones it’s important to use phrases like “please” and “thank you.”  When doing this we have to watch out for our tone of voice. If we modulate our tone when using social etiquette words, such as “please” and “thank you,” they will realize this is the norm and your example will guide them as they learn to speak. The idea is to incorporate these words in their every-day vocabulary from an early age. Try it, here at Hollywood Learning Center, we make sure to remind our little ones of their magic words all the time.

Smooth Touch:

Touch is something we all respond to, so it’s best to begin at an early age. Gently direct your baby on how to treat parents, siblings and pets. Teach them that hitting friends or family members is not okay and instead show them mannerism of love, such as handshakes, hugs, and pet rubs. By doing this you’ll be able to teach them the proper ways to touch and introduce the concept of cause and effect.

 

Toddler (2-3 years): It’s All About the Attitude!

As toddlers, your little ones will begin developing their personality. It is at this age, that they begin to repeat everything they hear or see. For that reason, it’s important for us parents and teachers to serve as example.

Toddlers are fun, but at times they can be very difficult to handle. They don’t call it the terrible two’s for no reason.

Sharing is Caring!:

At this age “mine” is something they repeat constantly. So showing them the power of sharing can be effective in reducing the use of the word “mine.” Lead by example share with them and those around you.

Table Manners:  

Begin showing your little ones simple table manners. Don’t speak with your mouth full, use utensils, no elbows on the table, ask for objects too far of reach. Reminders come handy at all times and once again lead by example.

Patience:

Introduce to them the concept of patience. We live in a fast-paced society where everyone wants everything done fast. Teaching them about patience from young can begin by simply reminding them not to interrupt conversations or allowing siblings to play first while patiently waiting for their turns, without getting antsy.

 

Pre-K and Elementary School (4 – 9 years): Developing Who they are

As children prepare to attend pre-K and elementary school, it’s important to work with them on their interactions with others around them ranging from teachers to other students. Begin by observing their interactions with other children besides family members. Take them to social gatherings and see if they are using the manners taught at home or school. Here are just a few to keep in mind:

Greetings: Show them the basics of a proper greeting with these three easy steps: eye contact, a firm shake or hug, and an introduction of their names. A proper introduction will provide your children with a boost of confidence. Remind them that first impressions are priceless.

Thank-you Notes: Not everyone write thank-you notes, but showing gratitude is beautiful and not often taught. At a young age, children are often receiving gifts for their birthdays or holidays. Teach them the importance of showing gratitude by either signing or drawing a picture on thank you cards. By 6 or 7, they will have the writing skills necessary to write entire thank you notes themselves. Teaching this small gesture can make a huge difference in their lives.

Manners and etiquette might vary from culture to culture or even family to family. At Hollywood Learning Center, we make sure to encourage manners, but we can only do so much at school. Practicing these at home can go a long way. Keep checking our blog for more helpful parent tips.

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Revolutionary Moms in History – Hollywood Learning Centers

If I could write down every mother, grandmother, aunt, stepmother, or any woman who extended her heart and hand to a person in need, I would write for a lifetime. Being a mother is an experience filled with fulfillment, joy, and sacrifice, and every one who entails the journey deserves the world. Personally, I know there isn’t a day that goes by where I need guidance from one of the many moms in my life.

Throughout history and the world, we have had numerous women who have sacrificed themselves in order to birth someone or something great, and in the words of Tupac, “You are appreciated”.

In the spirit of May, Hollywood Learning Centers put together five revolutionary moms in history who have not only contributed to their respected children, but also to society.

1) Ann Maria Jarvis:

Hollywood Learning Centers- Revolutionary Mothers in History

Mrs. Jarvis is known for being the creator of Mother’s Day. A super mom who understood the importance of mothers being healthy. She worked hard to begin the Mother’s Day Work Clubs in 1858 to improve health and sanitation conditions in an effort to prevent infant mortality. During the Civil War, the organization nursed soldiers from both sides, becoming a symbol of neutrality.

In an effort to create a peaceful post civil war lifestyle, Jarvis called to action to create a  “Mother’s Friendship Day.” After she passed in 1905, her daughter Anna Jarvis made it her mission to get an official Mother’s Day created, which she did.

2) Michelle Obama:
Michelle Obama

Most mom try their best to guide their kids so they grow up living healthy lives. First Lady Michelle Obama is no exception, making it her responsibility to have the whole country eat healthier, starting with children. Working hard to stress the importance of education for girls all over the world and enforcing a healthy initiative through the “Let’s Move!” program, Michelle Obama is one of the many revolutionary mother figures in this country. She is able to balance many tasks while being a mother to two girls. For all she has done for our country, I am sure she will be missed and she will always be a part of history.                                                                                                                                

3) Harriet Tubman:

harriet-tubman2Soon we will be able to see her on a 20 dollar bill, and this is just one aspect of Harriet Tubman’s revolutionary persona. As the face of the Underground Railroad, Harriet Tubman fearlessly lead more than 300 slaves to freedom and became an icon of the Civil Rights Movement.

Tubman spent the rest of her life as an abolitionist and humanitarian. She was strong and fearless and she helped send many to their deserved freedom; in a sense she is the mother to many, giving them a new deserved life.

4) Marie Curie:

MARIE-CURIE-facebookScientist, wife, and mother of two, Marie Curie was a true Renaissance woman. Redefining what it meant to be a mother and wife in her times, she is most famously known for her research in radioactivity and discovering the elements polonium and radium.

In 1903, Curie became the first woman to win the Nobel Prize, and later on was the first person to win two Nobel Prizes and the first female professor at the University of Paris. Can we say revolutionary?

 

5) Fatima Marin:

Fatima Marin

This last woman might not have impacted history, a nation or even an entire city, but she has and continues to devote herself to her daughters and each and every child in Hollywood Learning Centers of First Presbyterian Church. She makes sure children feel loved, parents at peace and her staff content in a working environment full of love and respect. She defies the norm by implementing extraordinary extracurricular activities, always finding the best companies to partner up with and improving year after year.

Every mother in her own way is revolutionary. Motherhood is a journey in which no one is sure of what it will entail. It’s something new everyday.

This list should be never ending, but it does serve justice to mothers everywhere because each of these revolutionary moms highlight certain aspects of motherhood. If you can, take the time today to recognize the revolutionary moms in your life.

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What Are Your Kids Doing this Summer?

Hollywood Learning Center Summer Camp:  June 13 - August 19 For more information please call (954) 922-8558

Hollywood Learning Center Summer Camp: June 13 – August 19 For more information please call (954) 922-8558

Summer is almost here! For over 30 years, Hollywood Learning Center, a ministry of First Presbyterian Church, has provided kids with a fun and enriching summer camp program to enjoy.  What are your kids doing this summer? Do you know what is in their summer bucket list?

Hollywood Learning Center put together a list full of our summer camp activities, including arts and crafts, pool time with swim instruction, music, yoga, games, sports, field trips, and more! How many of these are in your kids’ bucket list?

Here are a few of our field trips:

  • Bluefoot Pirate Ship
  • Butterfly World
  • Castaway Island Water Park
  • Davie Rodeo/Pro Rodeo Presentation
  • Flamingo Gardens
  • Flowers’ Bakery Nature’s Own 
  • Gumbo Limbo Nature Center 
  • Miami Seaquarium
  • Museum of Discovery and Science
  • Young at Art Children’s Museum

Most summer camps begin registering students as early as February, so if you have not yet selected a summer camp program for your kids, don’t worry. Hollywood Learning Center is still accepting summer camp registrations. Who’s more excited about summer?

HOLLYWOOD LEARNING CENTER SUMMER CAMP DATES: June 13 – August 19    

For more information about Hollywood Learning Center’s Summer Camp, please call (954) 922-8558

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5 Alternative Gifts to Flowers & Chocolate for Mom!

Curly Hair Mom and BabyThis weekend will be a special one, especially to all the new moms, stay-at-home-moms, single moms, stepmoms, and foster moms out there.

As a daughter and aspiring mother, I will be running around wrapping gifts, making reservations and making sure the mothers in my life feel loved. However, as a future mother and I’m sure many moms can relate, I think that flowers and chocolate are redundant.

Yes, the most common tradition has always been to give mom a beautiful bouquet of roses or a yummy box of dark chocolate, but who thinks that the Mother’s Day gifts traditions need to be rebranded?

As families search for new ways to make the most important women in their lives feel extra special, Hollywood Learning Centers of First Presbyterian Church has some suggestions on five alternative gifts to flowers and chocolate to surprise our moms this year.

5) Fruitable Arrangement: Chocolate covered strawberries or cherries are always a great alternative, especially on those occasions when it’s popular to send flowers. The advantage over flowers is being able to enjoy the fresh fruits arrangement decorated in a beautiful base. Make sure you write a special note! You can find these arrangements in different prices and sizes at Edible Arrangements.

4) Chocolate-face Mask: As you know, chocolate tastes like it was sent from heaven, but did you know it was also use as a skin care treatment? For amazing rejuvenating, exfoliating, or moisturizing facials, call our friend Lisa, from Lisa Miami Skin at (954) 806-1629.

3) Floral-print Dress: Give your mother, a bouquet of flowers that will not wilt. This beautiful floral-print dress can be found at Macy’s and is perfect for a Mother’s Day dinner, a special event, or family picnic.

2) Chocolate-flavored Wine When it comes to celebrating Mother’s Day at the table, red wine and chocolate seem like a natural match. But this year, winemakers across the country are producing wines that take the pairing to another level. You can find it here.

1) Flower-shaped Jewelry : You don’t have to buy diamonds to make an impact. But instead of a bouquet, a flower-shaped piece of jewelry makes a fantastic alternative. A flower charm from Pandora, a necklace with a meaningful rose pendant, a bouquet ring chosen with care – these can all say how you feel with flowers that will last a lifetime.

Hope this works for the traditional and not-so traditional moms, after all, they say is the thought that counts. Hollywood Learning Centers of First Presbyterian Church will like to wish all of our moms, a Happy Mother’s Day and remind you to register for our “Breakfast with Mom” event, this Friday at 9 AM.

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