How to Train Your Kids to Start their Homework. On Their Own.

How to get kids to start homework on their ownWouldn’t it be nice if your child came home from school, and then started on their homework in a timely manner… without you having to remind them? With the start of the new school year, this is the perfect time for some tips on how to train your kids to be more responsible and independent, whether that means they regularly:

  • start their homework on their own after school without reminders.
  • practice piano on their own before dinner without reminders.
  • do their nighttime routine on their own before bed without reminders.

Basically, the goal is to build a habit/routine in your child that doesn’t require you to get on their case about it. Sounds nice, right? Here is my guide on how to train your children to develop that independence! Continue reading

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A Very Juicy Story

Uber Fresh Juice Yum

Last week, my friend Kevin dropped off several bottles of juices for me to try– what a treat! I felt so spoiled, and thoroughly enjoyed the fact that we were instructed to finish them all within a few days. Normally, I’d spread out such an extravagance over days and days… but hey, I had to follow the “Best by 8/22/14″ sticker, right? So I gulped away, day and night, and drank to my heart’s content. It was GREAT!

Then I finished the last one, and there were no more in my fridge. Continue reading

Uber Fresh Juice and a Giveaway ($79 value)

*8/28/2014 UPDATE: Congrats to Teresa A., winner of the giveaway! Thanks, all for your participation!*Uber Fresh GiveawayCalifornia Dreamin’

I live in California. There’s a lot to love, from the weather to the diversity to the FOOD! The food, my friends. The food. And it’s not just me– these people agree that when it comes to food, California is tough to beat! I was particularly impressed to learn that California produces half the nation’s supply of fruits, vegetables, and nuts! WOW! That makes the whole “eating local and fresh” thing so much more enticing!

I’m sure you’ve heard it before: eat organic, eat local, eat fresh. It’s not just for hippies or hipsters anymore– groceries stores everywhere are reflecting the increasing demand for fresh, local, and organic products. I can get behind that. And so can a lot of other people, apparently. For example, over the last few years, I’ve been hearing more and more about juice bars: cafés serving freshly prepared fruit juices. It’s a thing. And why not? There are few things more satisfying than sipping exquisitely fresh, tasty, and healthy juice!

I have a feeling most of my readers are not from California, though. Wouldn’t it be nice to get some fresh-pressed, made-to-order, organic, locally-sourced, raw, California-sunshined juice delivered to your doorstep… tomorrow?  Continue reading

Mango Coconut Drink Recipe

refreshing mango coconut drink

I’ve been waiting ALL SUMMER to share this recipe with you. This is definitely on Ben’s favorite list. (Dakota, you are your husband is gonna love this one!) I have been eyeing every pile of mangoes I’ve come across since May, but the stores have yet to produce the perfumed mangoes I’ve been holding out for… so I finally just bought one and have been patiently waiting for this guy to ripen:

Before transformation

Today, I decided he was ready. Ready for bigger and better things. Ready to be transformed into something amazing:

Mango coconut drink recipe

This mango-coconut drink. YUM.

If you’ve been to Hong Kong, chances are you’ve hit up the famous dessert place Hui Lau Shan at some point  Continue reading

“Yesterday, I was Brave…”

Encouragement for Teachers3

When I first started teaching, I had a student-teaching assignment out in East San Jose. It was a difficult semester for me, to say the least. I got stress rashes and cried in my car almost every day after teaching, and I can totally see why there’s a lot of teacher burnout in low-income areas. If you’re one of those teachers, I wish I could personally give you a high five and sincere thank you for serving this demographic!

In the meantime, I share with you a poem. An encouragement, and a reminder of who we are caring for as you dive into this next school year. I’m not sure it qualifies as a poem, actually… but I used to tell my students they could just change up the spacing and call anything a poem.

Almost anything
can seem


…Right? =D K maybe not, hope I didn’t offend anyone out there. Well, whatever it is, I wrote this while I was in the thick of this challenging student-teaching assignment. Dr. Shierling, our Reading and Writing Curriculum instructor, had given us mini notepads and instructed us to write about “an unforgettable moment.”

Encouragement for Teachers

I immediately knew what I was going to write about, because just the day before, I had experienced a moment I never wanted to forget. So I started writing…

Yesterday, I was brave. I was daring. I took a risk. A big risk. I let my students show just how much more they knew, than I did. I showed my students how little I knew. I let them laugh at me, and I did not get upset.

And, I realized just how brave they are– every day. Continue reading

Math Game: Low Score

Low Score Math Game See Two Cards

Here is a game that involves fractions, memory-strengthening, and a litttttle bit of gambling (…sort of… not really). It takes a little more explanation in the beginning than say, the game of 99, but once you get the hang of it, it’s very simple.

Although this is recommended for grades 4-6, if your child understands the concept of fractions (even just visually), then they might be able to play. They may just need some help adding up their totals at the end. You can also cut out fraction bars or circles to help them visualize the totals at the end. Then again, you could just wait until fourth grade. There are plenty of other games to play in the meantime! :) Continue reading

How to Apologize Properly

Does the title sound familiar? Chances are you originally found my blog after reading my piece on teaching kids how to apologize. I’m pretty sure that’s how Verily Magazine found me, after which they asked me to write a version of apologies for adults. So I did! You can read it below, or find it HERE.

Thanks again for reading along on my blog! =D


Continue reading