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Raising Zia: Parenting tips from Marian Rivera-Dantes

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Marian Rivera-Dantes is a hands-on mom to three-year-old daughter Zia.

Marian Rivera-Dantes is a hands-on mom to three-year-old daughter Zia.

By Jane Kingsu-Cheng

The pretty mother-daughter duo, pregnant Marian Rivera-Dantes and Maria Leticia Dantes, were officially introduced as the Nido 3+’s celebrity endorsers. As soon as they entered the venue, their TVC was shown as part of the program’s introduction. Guests were thrilled to watch three-year-old Zia gushing about her very own commercial, and kept asking for the video to be shown again. Mom Marian was quick to explain that her daughter is like that, every time a new ad comes out. She likes to watch it over and over again. It seems we have a very beautiful and talented star in the making.

At the intimate launch, Marian shared her personal experiences on how life is with the very active Zia. “Kapag 3 years old kasi, maraming activities at development ang nangyayari so kailangan bilang nanay, makisabay ka,” shares Marian. Zia showed very good behavior all throughout the program, and guests couldn’t help but wonder how the pretty mom does it. She shared with the guests some effective parenting tips for toddlers that she learned along the way:

Start them early:

When it comes to food, Marian proudly reveals that Zia isn’t a picky eater. She gives credit to introducing different food types as early as possible. “Kasi siguro, since nung pinanganak ko siya, sinanay ko siyang kumain ng mga pagkain na gusto kong kainin, like vegetables. Actually, hanggang ngayon yung kinakain niya is steamed broccoli, lagyan mo ng salt. Kinakain niya iyon as is.”

Milk is important.

Aside from the required food intake, Marian believes that milk should be part of their daily diet. “Dapat eh. Naniniwala ako na sa ganyang active at sa ganyang age, siguro merong nutrition through food, pero iba pa rin ang naitutulong ng milk. At napakalakas niyang dumede. Siguro yung isang lata ata ng gatas ay parang 3 days lang, wala na. So ganun siya kalakas uminom. Tingnan niyo naman ang anak ko parang walang kapaguran. Sobrang active talaga.”

Being hands-on

Marian supports her daughter wholeheartedly, and that includes joining in physical activities as well. “Sinasabayan ko siya. Energetic ka? Energetic din ako, ganoon. Mas maganda na nasasabayan mo siya. As long as wala naman siyang ginagawang masama, why not, di ba? Pero ‘yun lang, mahirap pag buntis ka.” She also shared one example at home, “Sa garden namin, hindi mo maiwasan minsan umulan, malamok, magwo-worry ka. Kawawa naman yung anak ko. Gusto niyang mag-explore outside. Eh di samahan ko siya. As long as walang ginagawang masama, nageenjoy yung anak mo, samahan mo yung anak mo. Yun talaga ang essence ng pagiging hands-on.”

Positive reinforcement

The doting mom also revealed one challenging scenario that she was able to overcome. “Gusto niya pag kumakain siya, naglalaro siya habang kumakain. Andyan yung plate niya, naglalaro siya. Pero sabi ko sa sarili ko ‘Nako, hanggang kailan siya ganito?’ Ang weird na kakain habang naglalaro.”

She came up with an idea and asked Zia, “Alam mo anak, if you’re going to eat beside me, Mama will be
happy. Can we try?” True enough, Zia sat beside her and started to eat. “Mama, are you happy?” she asked. Marian reminisces fondly, “Sabi ko, ‘Super duper happy. I want to seat beside you when we’re eating.’ Hanggang ngayon, pag kumakain ako, maghuhugas siya ng kamay. Tatabi na siya sa akin. Sabay na kami kumakain ngayon. Lalo na na wala akong trabaho. Sabay kaming kumakain. Training talaga, that is the keyword.”

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