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Compass FYI Going Solo Parenting Styles It started out as a joke: Feb. 14 th , Singles Awareness Day — or SAD. But men and women around the world are now using the date traditionally devoted to commemorating coupledom as an excuse to celebrate their significant- other-free status. If you find yourself partner-free this month, or know someone who will be alone this V-Day, instead of moping around at home feeling grumpy and unloved, get out there with your single friends and share the joys of the un-spouse-encumbered life. Here are a few ideas: 1 Go out for cocktails and talk about all your horrible past relationships — it’ll remind you of how sometimes (often?), going solo is far better than the alternative. 2 Buy yourself, a “Singles Day” present like a massage, a bottle of great champagne, or a decent box of chocolates (instead of the lousy ones those horrible past relationships used to yield). Parenting has many stages according to the age of your child. At the end of the day, they are your children and you need to give them all the attention, love and understanding that you can. Parenting is easier when the children are younger. They follow the instructions you give them and don’t really answer back or challenge authority as much. We tend to forget that they have different temperaments and personalities. The funny thing is they resemble you: It’s called genetics. Here are some suggestions to consider: • Keep your emotions controlled. There should never be a reason strong enough to cause you to raise your voice. • Say what you want them to do and if they don’t, show them how. • Find things in common and do them together, and make sure to spend time doing what’s important to your children...as often as possible. • Give rewards for their accomplishments by allowing them to spend time with friends. • Have family meals every day if possible. Talk about their day and your day. • Host events in your home so you can see who their friends are and how they interact together. • When you need to give advice about an issue, use your own life experiences or someone else’s. They may pretend to not be paying attention but trust me, they are. Parenting can’t be done alone. Both parents need to be on the same page in order to raise a well-rounded child. Otherwise children will tend to manipulate and it can be very difficult. Don’t be caught up in your own world; make a difference in their lives. They need you! 3 Hit a nightclub and browse for dance mates. You’ll quickly realize how nice it can be to have all your options open — instead of having just one option sitting at home on the couch munching on chips. Beraja › Licensed Lisette Marriage is a & Psychotherapist, Family Therapist and Founder of Beraja Counseling Center. For more than 10 years, she has provided guidance to her clients. She’s also a Florida Supreme Court Family Mediator and a Parenting Coordinator. For an appointment, call 305.858.7763 or visit BerajaCounseling.com. Type Away “Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.” — Vincent van Gogh 16 Can Opener Flush Master The search engine Yahoo! originally went by the super-catchy moniker, “Jerry’s Guide to the World Wide Web”, named for co-founder Jerry Yang. Well — we guess it’s better than “Google.” The first can opener was invented 50 years after the first can was born. Before that, instructions for opening solid iron containers read, “Cut round top with a chisel and hammer.” What a mess! In addition to being an artist and courtier during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I, John Harington was also the clever guy who invented the flush toilet — which is why we sometimes now refer to it as “The John.”