Motherhood is a 24/7 job with no holidays. You’re a mom from Monday to Sunday whether you’re sick, sad, or sleepy. And whether your child is one or 41, you’ll still be his mom.

I am a mom four times over. Paolo and Nicolo, Darla and Meg—they are my sweethearts, the stars that light up my life. My twin boys, Paolo and Nicolo, are as different as they are alike. Nicolo likes to cook while Paolo is into computers. Nicolo wants to study the piano; Paolo wants to play a bass guitar. Darla loves to draw while Meg likes to play around.

Being a good mother isn’t exactly easy. Feeding your child nutritious meals, raising him in a warm, secure, and loving environment, providing him with a good education, bringing him up with faith, and encouraging him to explore his many interests–they don’t sound so difficult, you might say. But try doing that every hour of every day for the rest of your life and you might change your mind.

That’s why trying to be the best mom that you can possibly be is even harder. It takes love, patience, determination, and time, lots of it.

In every professional endeavor that I undertake, I always try to give my best shot at it. I do my research. I draw up plans. And then, I put an enormous amount of time and effort to get it going the right way.

That’s also how I try to be at being a mother.

I do my research.

I am one of those people who try to read as much as I can on a subject which interests me, so you can just imagine how much reading I’ve done about parenting. My readings aren’t limited to books, whether print or digital, I’ve also taken to going through online parenting sites and blogs as they offer personal insights from real people.

I also like talking to fellow parents about my concerns. Moms are just the most generous people when it comes to sharing advice. They would not hesitate to tell you what worked and what didn’t for them. After all, we’re all in this together—and if we can help just one mom have an easier time at this parenting thing then the better.

I draw up plans.

If you’ve read my previous pieces then you know that I love planning. That’s how I am with my children as well, I plan. Their days are as busy as mine because I want their minds and spirits to be motivated, stimulated, and inspired.

Since we have a tutorial center, I make sure that they use it to their full advantage. Darla and Meg have tutorials in Filipino, Paolo in Chemistry, and Nicolo in Geometry. Our young and smart tutors give them as much help as they need when it comes to their studies—with my supervision, of course.

Because learning goes beyond the classroom and because my kids love music, they’re taking up lessons to learn different kinds of musical instruments. Darla took up violin lessons, Meg the piano, Nicolo the drums, and Paolo the saxophone. I figured that if they get really good at their instruments, then maybe we can set up a band. I wonder who’d be on vocals though.

I put an enormous amount of time and effort to get it going the right way.

From the many books, articles, web sites, and blogs that I’ve gone through, a significant factor that contributes to a woman being the best mother that she can be is just being there, being present for your child physically, mentally, and spiritually.

That’s why I’ve gone through great lengths to be there for my children. For example, I have what I call my one-hour rule. At any time of the day, I make sure that I am only one hour away from my children. This way, in case of any emergency, I could be with my child in less than an hour. Sometimes, this rule has posed quite a challenge on my schedule. When Meg went on her class field trip early this year, I was following her bus in my car.

I also spend all of my non-working hours with them. We like dining in new places, trying out what they have to offer. We also like going to the movies, seeing the latest animated feature. On weekends, we like driving out of town, enjoying the fresh air or swimming under the sun. Most of all, we like hanging out at home, eating, playing games, or just talking with one another.

Motherhood is a 24/7 job with no holidays. But seeing your children grow from being sweet little babies into bright and talented individuals filled with passion and hope, well, I wouldn’t have it any other way.