Train up your child, in the way of the Lord…

In Proverbs 22:6, we are told as that we should “train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” A lot of Christian families are struggling in a world hostile to Christian values, and increasingly find themselves searching for answers and strategies to be more effective. Parents also face a disturbing trend of young people leaving home and leaving the Church and want to insure their children have a strong foundation of biblical faith and understanding. Now, the question is, how should we train up our children? Attend Church as a Family Regularly Make it a priority to find a good church in your area, particularly one with a strong children’s program and a congregation full of young families. You want going to church to be a positive, spiritually fueling experience for all of you. Don’t just attend church, get involved with what your church of choice has to offer like Sunday school classes, Bible studies, Women’s groups, and more. Watch DVD’s or Listen to Music CD’s Sometimes a great way to reinforce God’s message is through a cute movie that captures the attention of children. Music is also a wonderful resource. There are music CD’s out there that teach scriptures as part of the song lyrics.     Read a Children’s Bible Every Day You can find a reading plan and sit with your child each day for a few minutes to read, or you can incorporate your Bible reading with a daily devotional. Read Daily Devotional’s Together There are a lot of great devotionals out there for kids of all ages. Find the one that best suits your family Live a Lifestyle of Faith Try to make a conscious effort to set a godly example in your daily living. Some days are better than others. We aren’t perfect. That’s the beauty of teaching through example. Our children get to see God loves us despite our human imperfections. Strive to set a good example in your own faith and lifestyle. Children are always watching their parents. Finally, pray together at meals and at bedtime. Look for opportunities throughout the day to talk about God or teach about his beliefs. Make sure your children hear you praying, hear you talking about your faith, and hear you tell them they can come to you with any questions they might have.    

Answering your kids’ questions about faith

Who created God? If God has a son, who is God's wife? How can three beings be the same one God? Why does God let people die? Why is there so much evil in the world that God created? Where will babies go to? Heaven or earth? I remember the first and only time I saw someone die; it was a little girl that had been knocked down by a vehicle and I couldn't help but wonder... Was she going to heaven or hell?? As adults, we have so many questions in our heart, perhaps of things that look so mysterious about the Christian faith. Then our kids come along and start asking the same questions - questions unanswered in our own hearts. There is often the temptation to cook up something that sounds nice for children to believe but that is usually a recipe for futuristic disaster, a time bomb waiting to explode...tick..tock. Here are some tips on how to answer your Kids' questions. 1. Do not respond like God is unexplainable, difficult to understand or mysterious. God is actually explainable, revealed through out the scriptures. Therefore, search through the scriptures with your kids to get answers. Not only would you learn, it would be a time of bonding (call it spiritual bonding, if you please.) 2. Give your child room to fully express his doubts. Don't assume curiosity is skepticism. Neither tell him to shut up nor act like he's doing the unimaginable. There is great danger in unexpressed doubts. 3. Do not meet his questions with clichéd answers such as "Well, we just have to believe". You have just succeeded in creating more doubts in his heart. 4. Resist the temptation of giving an 'over-sabi' answer. Break things down as much as possible. But do not start giving unnecessary complex information that could raise more doubts. Simply answer the question as simple as possible with scriptural references. 5. Keep praying for your kids. That light will flood their hearts and they will receive a deep revelation of Christ that will birth firm conviction in them. 6. Encourage your child to share what he has learnt from you with other kids. This would help cement knowledge received in his heart. Share your own story?? Ever had your kid ask you a staggering faith question? Pray tell, how did you handle it??

Revealed! Is your Mother-in-Law toxic?

Does your mother in law make life unbearable for you? Is she insensitive, controlling, judgmental, critical and overbearing? Is she like a soul-sucking parasites that feed on your misery? Find out if your mother-in-law is toxic! 1. She is always right, without exception. Which means that she's never wrong. She'll never admit being wrong, and she will never apologize for anything. 2. She is dismissive. She will ignore you for the most part, conveying that you don't matter to her. She will not listen to a word you say. She'll also disregard any of your accomplishments as insignificant and unworthy of her attention. 3. She will communicate to you, in delightfully subtle ways, that you are not good enough for her son, and for her family. 4. To establish her dominance and to prove that she was right about you, she will expect you to do things that please her. That would include you wanting to spend time with her, appearing at every family event, learning her way of cooking, cleaning and just about everything else under the sun (because her way is clearly better), adopting her religion and culture. 5. She will not respect your words, choices or personal space. She will come to your house uninvited and unannounced, expecting you to welcome her with open arms and be grateful for the honor of her visit. She will look with disgust at how filthy your place is, and how unmannered your kids are. 6. She sees her children not as individuals, but as extensions of herself. Everything they do reflects on her, so she will go to great lengths to correct any "deviation" from the path she's chosen for them. That includes the people they marry; you. She will never give up on trying to destroy your marriage, or to control her children's lives. There isn't any easy remedy for a toxic mother-in-law. One thing you can do is to stay away from her. That's a simple and effective strategy, but it has its drawbacks. Something to do with the law of attraction - the more you try to avoid something, the more it follows you. She's in your life for a reason, you just have to accept her for who she is.

Is Soccer Your Husbands’ Second Love? Here are 3 Tips on how to deal with it

It is another football weekend ladies! If your are married to a football fan, you would know that Saturdays are for chill and soccer. I know how difficult that can be. I mean, you want husbands to take you out but precious Arsenal is playing so it's a no-no (I am an Arsenal fan and I will stick with Arsenal no matter what). Now, you are frustrated and you make up your mind to have 'the talk' which, deep down, you know wouldn't change much.

How do you handle this situation?

1. SUPPORT HIS TEAM:

Now, I can hear someone screaming, “what?”!!! Well ladies, before you chop off my head, take a deep breath and consider this for a moment. The saying "if you cannot beat them, join them" and this is a classic example of where this saying is applicable.

For starters, just in case you haven't yet, pick an interest in football too. You might not be as passionate as your boo but show that you care about his interests too, and if possible, become a genuine fan of his club too. Trust me, that will save you a whole lot of stress and more time and conversations with him.

2. GETTING YOUR ME TIME:

While he’s watching the game, you can catch up on various activities you have penciled down to do. It could be work related, studying for an exam or trying out a new recipe.

3 .BE SENSITIVE

Whenever his team losses, do not! I repeat, do not! Empathize with him but have the we'll-get-back-at-them attitude. Perhaps, give him some 'good-loving' in the evening. wink* wink*

I am pretty sure there are many other ways to handle the situation. So dear wife, how have you handled yours? Share your story.

How much can you sacrifice for your children?

One working definition of sacrifice is “giving up something temporarily good for something eternally better.” Parents make a lot of sacrifices just to ensure that their children have the best of everything; education, clothing, shelter etc. As a parent, how far can you go to ensure your kids have the best of everything? Although, loving your child is the purest, deepest least selfish act you will ever experience, but there are sometimes where it's more than love you need to sacrifice. I'm talking of material things. Earlier in the week, a story of a South African girl broke the internet. She posted the photos below and captioned it: “Proud of my dad who obtained his first degree at 54. Sometimes, our parents put their dreams on hold for us. I love you dad. ❤❤❤” That being said, do you have any issues about using your money or influence meant for “other things” to help your kids? We’d like to hear how you balance giving your children a leg-up in life and enjoying your own life. If you’re a parent anywhere in the world – or even if you’re not – we’d like to hear from you about the choices you’ve made, or one day intend to make, on behalf of your children.

Style tips: How mums can look trendy again

Almost all mothers put so much time and energy into their kids that time for themselves is often that last minute before running out the door. It seems like some women lose their fashion sense along with their placenta as they just forget to take care of themselves. They basically pack their hair, wear some jeans or a free gown and a pair of slippers or sandals.  That shouldn't be the case. You can be a hot mama and still perform all your parenting duties. You don't have to look sloppy because you're a mum. How can you look fashionable while being a mum? Know Yourself. More precisely, know your style. What was your style pre-kids? What did you love wearing? What made you feel fashionable? And why aren’t you wearing those things anymore? Why should the kids look prim/proper and you look like you got dressed in the dark? Dress as you did before you had kids. There are so many ways to dress casually and still looks fabulous. Just give yourself five minutes before you leave the house to pull your look together. Know your size. Ensure the clothes and outfits you wear are a perfect fit. Accessorize. Accessorizing is cheap. And doesn’t involve measurements. Just adding a necklace, the right bag or some lipstick (yes, makeup can be seen as an accessory. And when we women look our best, you're more or less encouraging other women to do the same. We are always looking at each other. So stock up on necklaces, chokers, loop earrings, bangles etc. Don’t forget to always have a nice hair-do, or better still, buy wigs. We have lots of varieties these days so you have a wide range to select from. A Little Goes a Long Way The best advice is to build a wardrobe of well-made pieces that you love and that can be worn with each other. Don’t get too trendy. And keep the jewelry on the body, not on the clothes. And for those PTA meetings, school engagements or birthday parties, don't go too far with sequins, so much cleavage, and 3 inch heels, all of which may send the wrong message. You don't want to draw the wrong type of attention. Now what about you? Mum or not, share your own quick tip on achieving effortless style.

Weekend recipe for the week: Grilled fish

Grilled fish is simply delicious, especially when it's properly spiced and marinated. It's absolutely easy to prepare once you have an easy recipe and the available ingredients. The commonly used type of fish for this purpose is Croaker Fish or Tilapia Fish. The problem with the latter is that it's got lots of bones so you've got to be careful when eating.  So, let's get cooking. Ingredients

  • 2 Whole Tilapia/Croaker/sea bream Fish(or any whole fish of choice)
  • 1 tablespoonful ground Black pepper
  • 1 tablespoonful thyme
  • 1 tablespoonful ground Red Chili pepper
  • ½ teaspoon ginger and garlic powder/3 cloves garlic
  • 2 seasoning cubes
  • ½ teaspoon curry powder(optional)
  • 3 tablespoonful Vegetable Oil
  • ½ teaspoon Salt to taste
Let me note here that some of the spices listed are optional, but the pepper, salt(or seasoning cubes) and oil are the most important ones, so feel free to combine all or a few of them to your taste. Do not use cubes if you're MSG intolerant. Cooking directions Direction
  1. Clean the fish thoroughly to move the scales gills and gut.Rinse and set aside in a container.
 
  1. In a bowl, prepare the marinade by mixing all the ingredients together until it's smooth and everything blends well.
 
  1. Next, Place the fish on a wide aluminum (it must cover the fish properly) and with a sharpened knife make some slashes lengthwise on each fish. These slashes will help the marinade to penetrate into the fish and enhance the taste). The number of slashes you make will depend on the size & lenght of the fish you are using.
 
  1. Wash your hands properly and rub the mixture on the fish and also inside the spaces made by the slashes. Make sure that the fish is well covered with the marinade. Then cover with the foil and leave in the fridge to rest for 20 to 30 minutes. Most times, I leave it in the fridge overnight but I put it in a Ziploc just to make sure my fridge doesn't smell like fish. Ziploc keeps the smell out of the fridge.
 
  1. Preheat the oven grill for 20 minutes at 180C/375F. Then take out the fish from the fridge and remove the foil. If you want the fish to be really tender, leave it in the foil while you grill. Grease the grill with oil  and place the fish on the hot grill.  Leave it to cook for 5 to 10 minutes on one side before flipping over to the other side.(The time it takes to cook depends on how hot your grill is, but make sure the grill isn't too hot. The fish has to be properly grilled).
  When the fish turns brownish on both sides, it's ready. You can also use a fork just to see if inside is tender enough. When cooked properly, the it will be firm to the touch, flake easily with a fork, and appear opaque all the way through.   This dish is best served with potato chips, fried yam or sweet potatoes. Feel free to garnish it with onions, tomatoes, cabbage, lettuce or anything that'll suit your taste.  

What’s your worst roommate story?

Roommate relationships can be some of the most rewarding and lasting relationships. And they're relationships with the highest potential to go wrong. You've got to deal with one another's living habits, quirks, and drama, and, if it's not working out, you're stuck under the same roof until you find somewhere else to live. Most of us have had some sort of roommate-related conflict, especially in secondary school or university because that's when we're most likely to have roommates. But if you haven't ever experienced a true roommate horror story, you'll probably feel pretty fortunate after reading these stories. I went around and compiled stories from different people all over Nigeria asking about the worst roommates they've had. Before that, let me share mine with you. I was in my second year in the University of Ibadan, I had 3 roommates (typical Federal University setting). I had no problem with two of them. But one was exceptionally dirty. Her corner was always oozing with different unpleasant odours.   I never brought any friend over because it was really embarrassing. After the ASUU strike that lasted about 6 months, this girl came back from home and slept on the same bedsheet she spread on her bead before the strike commenced! The funny thing about this girl is that, when you see her in public, you'll have no idea that she's a dirty person. Her face is always well made up. Till I left the room, I never discussed the issue with her. I just let her wallow in her dirt at the expense of my own sanity. Here are some of the horrible roommates’ stories I compiled. Excerpts; “My roommate practically turned out room to a church. Every night, he and members of his fellowship would keep the other roommates and I awake because they're always praying and speaking in tongues. It was a really frustrating period for me.” -Adeyinka, 400 level Economics Student, Obafemi Awolowo University.   “My horrible roommate story is extremely hilarious. It wasn't a typical hostel, it was a room outside campus. The room was really big so we had enough space. My roommate’s boyfriend came over one night and I thought it was a one-day thing, little did I know it was going to be a norm. I wasn't free again in my own room as I had to move around all covered up and all. I couldn't even tie a towel to the bathroom. Then at night, this shameless couple will wake me up with sexual moans and noises. It was really funny. I moved out at some point because I couldn't just deal anymore” -Chinyere, 500 level Medical Student, University of Lagos.   “My roommate was just a talkative. She couldn't keep quiet to save her life. She was always gisting with her friends either via phone calls or they'll come to the room and talk from now till eternity. They talked about people, who said what, whose boyfriend is cheating on who etc. It was bad because I couldn't read in the room, except of course she's not around.” -Aisha, 300 level English Student, University of Ilorin.   This were some of the responses I got from students in the country. What's your story? Share it with us in the comment section below.    

Can you let your child date/marry a guy she’s older than?

In the western world, dating someone younger—whether you’re two or three years his senior certainly can work. Asides celebrities in Hollywood, there are tons of other regular women who date and even marry younger men. If there's anything everyone can agree on, it's that times are changing, and the things that were once frowned upon have now become the norm. However, in Nigeria, the reverse is the case. Being an “older woman” in a relationship does tend to come with certain perks and downfalls. The society here doesn't out rightly accept it, but that doesn't mean it never happens. It's not surprising to see a young woman with a significantly older man, but when it comes to dating a man younger than you, it's different. Not to mince words, it's a bit of a social stigma. It is more acceptable for a Nigerian man to marry a younger woman or of like age BUT when it comes to the older woman who is up to 3-8 years older then him the tables are turned. However, celebrities like Dare art Alade and his wife, Deola Ayeni have an 8-year gap, Peter Okoye(One half of the hip-hop duo, P Square) and his wife, Lola Omotayo-Okoye have a 6 year age difference, Osas Ighodalo is also rumoured to be 3 years older than her husband, Gbenro Ajibade. Others are Funke Akindele and JJC Skills(8 months age difference), popular dancer, Kaffy and her husband Joseph Ameh( 8 year age gap) and also, popular business and fashion mogul, Toyin Lawani and her baby daddy Lord Trigg (10 year age gap). Truth be told, you cannot help who you fall in love with, but you may do yourself a favour by bracing up for the challenges that may come with your choice of partner. Nigeria is a country where people prefer to be reserved when it comes to issues that have to do with love,sex and other related issues. These things are expected to follow some laid down rules made by people you might have never met in your life. They are simply accepted as the norm and used as guidelines over time. Many Nigerians have their reservations about some clauses in relationships; dating a man younger than you is most likely to be met with raised eyebrows. The lady might even be labeled as an “old cargo”. She'll be subject to public ridicule, issues from her mother-in-law etc. Problems like infidelity, different ideas of fun and so on, can arise from the age difference.   That being said, what are your views on this issue? Can you let your daughter be in this position? Would you support your son if he wants to be with an older lady? We’d love to hear from you.

FAB WCW: Tara Fela-Durotoye

Our WCW is none other than fashion woman extraordinaire, Tara Fela-Durotoye. Here are 5 things you should know about our WCW:

  1. Tara began her education at Command Children School, Victoria Island and proceeded to Nigeria Navy Secondary School, Ojo. She graduated from the Lagos State University, with a degree in Law and proceeded to establish the House of Tara International.
2. Talk about a Trendsetter! TFD has blazed a trail for others to follow. She is the Managing Director and Creative Director of House Of Tara International, a leading player in the make-up sector of Nigeria’s beauty industry which she founded at the age of 20 whilst an undergraduate. 3. She knows her numbers: Being the woman behind Africa’s foremost beauty brand doesn’t happen overnight, neither does it  happen without putting in the WORK. Tara knows her business inside out, no wonder House of Tara is being studied at  Harvard.     4. Her commitment to the growth and development of the beauty industry in Nigeria has not gone recognized. She is a recipient of the Future Award Young Person of the Year 2007 and in 2013, she was listed among Forbes 20 Young Power Women in Africa. 5. Through her Make-up school, Tara has developed and trained about 300 make-up artists who have gone on to establish their own budding outfits. 6. She is married to Fela Durotoye, a business strategist and corporate activator, chief executive officer of Visible Impact. They have three sons, Mobolurin, Demilade & Morolaoluwa. And she sure is doing a great job raising those boys, supporting her husband and also creating trends and growing her business!

 Share with us how she’s inspired you , below.

FAB WCW