J Simens.com

Most Interesting – People’s Choice

It is interesting to see which blog post from jsimens.com  has the highest amount of readers this year.


A child's view of their culture

This blog post has had the most exposure as of today: Understanding children and how they read – By the time we’ve each the ‘W’ in ‘NOW’ the ‘N’ is ancient history. I love working with four and five year olds. I acknowledge that sometimes this takes a lot of patience and a large investment of time. Often by the time I get to the end of an observation, the beginning answers and questions are ancient history.




A mother's touch



This blog post has the second highest readers: Sandwich and a pie – Does life get any better than this? On March 14, I was able to spend a day that was almost heaven.  Or at least what I hope heaven is like. 

I was within arms distance of both my mother and my daughter. When you live on different continents, this is special. This means we were able to hug each other if we wanted to hug each other. We were able to look into each other’s eyes and we could see each other’s smiles. With all the news and concerns about the sandwich generation, sometimes we forget we are very lucky to be able to share the aging of a parent with our own children, their grandchildren.  As my daughter, Jackie says, “This is what old age should look like and I hope I get to share it with you.”




This blog post has the third highest readers: Top 10 ways to lead by example in your family. Good parents must lead by example.

Through your actions, which are aligned with what you say, you become a person your child wants to follow. When parents say one thing but do another, they erode trust, a critical element of productive relationships. Here are ways to lead by example.




Where did you put your gum?


This blog post has the fourth highest readers:  World-Wide childhood games teach valuable skills. When I first tried to play this game with 18 five-year olds in Singapore (English was not our language of instruction)…I heard ruck, ruck roose. I heard much, much worse and I just closed me ears and played on!

One child decided that the only way he could play the game was to give each person a different animal name. (We never understand what was going on because he just kept running around the circle.) Then “Yu” got a turn and we were all Ducks…not a goose in sight.

What I was trying to create was an environment where all kids laughed, felt a part of the situation and had some control over what happened.


Saying Goodbye


The following blog has had the most (re-tweets): Sadness can be a Blessing for Expats. Being sad washing the champagne glasses after New Years Eve – is not sad. Being sad taking down the Christmas tree – is not sad. Being sad unstringing the Christmas lights – is not sad.

Taking your grown child to the airport to leave after the holidays – is sad.


Expats are used to transitions. We are pros at saying goodbye. We have had more experience doing this than Carlos Slim Helu has money.  But unlike Mr. Helu we do not dream of increasing our ‘output’ when it comes to saying these goodbyes.

Amazon: Emotional Resilience

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