Baby Eczema can be either mild or serious. From natural to prescription remedies, treatment options are varied. Here are some of the most common ways to treat baby eczema, as well as a few tips and tricks I learned in dealing with baby eczema in more than one of my kids. Learn how to treat baby eczema and turn your back on it forever, with tips from a mom who knows the pain all too well.
What is Baby Eczema?
Eczema, also referred to as atopic dermatitis, is a skin eruption that can cause mild to very severe symptoms, like redness, raised skin, and itchiness. Many times it afflicts those with asthma or allergies, but it can occur in anyone. The exact cause is unknown. Baby eczema is that which occurs in infants. Because babies already have sensitive skin, this can be a delicate issue to deal with. Some infants can even get cracked, bleeding, or even yellow and infected skin, due to eczema.
What Can You do to Treat Baby Eczema?
There are many ways to treat baby eczema. Keeping the skin clean and moisturized is key. Fragrance free lotions and creams may be a recommended first step. There are over the counter creams, such as cortisone cream, to help treat itching. However, frequent use of those can actually cause further damage to the skin. The doctor may also prescribe an ointment or cream to treat the eczema or an antihistamine to help control the itching.
What Worked for My Baby's Eczema?
Each child is different, as far as how they react, as well as which treatments worked. Here are a few of the treatments that worked best for us. I have more than one child who was prone to eczema flare-ups as a baby. Even the doctor-recommended lotions and creams that were fragrance free would irritate the eczema, rather than helping, in our case.
Original A+D Ointment - I decided to try the A+D ointment one day after asking the pediatrician. To my surprise, the A+D ointment started working fairly quickly. I noticed results the same day and began using the ointment every day. After that, flare-ups started occurring less and less and eventually cleared for good. The same thing happened in three cases, so I definitely recommend talking to a doctor about the A+D ointment.
Medline Remedy Olivamine Clear-aid Skin Protectant - One of my babies would break out very easily and her eczema rashes didn’t respond to anything until we tried the Medline Remedy Olivamine Clear-aid Skin Protectant. This was recommended by NICU nurses for our preemie baby’s diaper rashes. But we liked it a lot and started using it for all skin irritations in multiple kids. It turns out that any time there’s a rash, dry skin, or other skin irritation, this cleans it up quickly, sometimes in just a few minutes, which is like a miracle, compared to other treatments that take days or months. With the kids this was tried on, flare-ups only seem to occur when they're accidentally exposed to an allergen. Other than those instances, after using this on every flare, it hasn't come back at all.
Homemade Intent-sive Healing Baby Balm - Once we better learned what worked and didn't on everyone's sensitive skin, we decided to invent our own healing balm with all natural ingredients. While the above methods worked, we found the homemade healing baby balm was not only clearing up outbreaks, but it was making the skin healthier day by day. Not only is everyone's skin glowing now, but all outbreaks have completely stopped, even when they are accidentally exposed to things that made them break out previously.
When Should You Call a Doctor for Baby Eczema?
A properly licensed pediatrician or family practice doctor should always be contacted if you suspect that your baby has eczema or notice any other rashes or skin irritations. Treatment options should also be discussed with a doctor. If you hear about a product or treatment option that your child's pediatrician has not mentioned, discuss it with him or her before trying it on the child's baby eczema.
Extra Tips for Treating Baby Eczema
*Note that the author is not a licensed medical professional. This is intended for informational purposes only, as individual results may vary. Always contact a licensed medical professional for health matters.
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Prevention is the best method to solve the problem of baby stains on clothing. However, sometimes accidents still will happen. Such is routine when there are children around. To prevent baby accidents or spills, try using flat fold cloth diapers as shoulder and lap covers when handling the baby. This will help prevent spit up and other baby stains. It also is a smart idea to not wear your best clothing when feeding the baby. When prevention fails, parents need to know how to remove stains from clothing, be it the baby's clothing or their own. Here are my best tips on how to remove baby stains from clothing.
How To Remove Baby Stains From Clothing
Act quickly when it comes to baby stains. The quicker you remove baby stains from clothing, the better the results. Most baby food stains are going to be food-based, even the worst ones, so think in terms of getting out food stains.
First Steps for Removing Baby Stains From Clothing
To remove baby stains from clothing, first use a Huggies baby wipe to wipe it away while it's still wet. You can also use a wet cloth or oil-free homemade baby wipes. If there is any stain remaining, you can lightly dab on either some eco-friendly fragrance & dye-free dish soap or hydrogen peroxide and lightly rub the solution in with a Huggies baby wipe.
Hydrogen Peroxide and Tougher Baby Stains
Hydrogen peroxide works best for tougher stains and also is only good to use on white clothing. It has a very effective bleaching effect, so do not use it on colors. On colors, instead use the liquid laundry soap.
Removing Baby Stains Completely
Once you have applied the hydrogen peroxide or soap, to remove baby stains from clothing completely, fill a sink with warm water and swish the stained item around with the soap or hydrogen peroxide still there. If necessary, also lightly rub the stain. Apply more soap or hydrogen peroxide as necessary, rinsing until the stain is gone. Do not scrub the clothing too hard or it may get ruined. Gentle scrubbing is best. Rinse the baby clothing out. If this process did not remove the baby stains from the clothing, repeat the process.
Finishing Steps to Remove Baby Stains from Clothing
Once you have gone through the steps to remove baby stains from clothing, hang the clothing to dry. Sometimes a lighter version of the stain may still be there once dry. Do not put the clothing in the dryer again until the clothing has dried and you can see that the entire stain is removed. The dryer can set the stain in. If you have already done this, you may have to work extra hard with a combination of all three scrubbing ingredients to remove baby stains from clothing.
Why This Method Works for Removing Baby Stains From Clothing
The reason the hydrogen peroxide works to remove baby stains is because its bubbling action pulls out residue that might get under the surface. Laundry soap works is because, well, it's designed for dirty laundry. Liquid dish soap can remove baby stains from clothing because it is designed to remove food stains. Again, most baby stains are related to food, including those that come out the other end. It is, after all, food waste processed by the body.
*For more baby and parenting tips, please click the subscribe button to the right and check out our other sections as well.
Source: Purely Personal Experience
Reading is an excellent way to bond with your kids. What better way than with a series that teaches fun lessons with cute characters everyone falls in love with? Jennie Wren's books for kids are a great way for families to bond in a lighthearted fun way. Because of this, they also make perfect kids gifts for holidays, birthdays, or anytime!
When our toddler, Nova Skye got the shipment of these wonderful books, it was such a fun family bonding experience to watch her tear into them. As you will see in the box opening video (below), her excitement couldn't be contained.
Age Recommendation: All ages (younger kids will need them read to them)
Holiday Recommendation: Christmas, Easter, Birthdays, Everyday, and more!
Stay tuned for more about these books in the future!
* The author of this post received free copies of these books from the author. However, this did not influence the opinion of the books.
Sure, card playing with kids is awesomely fun. But did you know that it also could be good for learning and emotional health? If you haven't played cards with your kids before, you may just change that routine soon.
According to ParentingScience.com, studies show cognitive benefits to play, which could include card playing. Kids who play often are proven to excel in academics. Frequent play also improves memory, problem-solving skills, math skills, and even language skills. This could be due to the fact that many types of play involve utilizing those skills.
Memory and Match-Up card games for kids are particularly beneficial. They can help improve concentration, train visual memory, improve vocabulary, increase hand-eye coordination, increase short-term memory, practice and increase attention to detail, help to classify objects, help to differentiate objects, and help to familiarize traits in specific objects.
The benefits are so strong that card playing is often used to help fight off memory and cognitive conditions like dementia and Alzheimer's Disease.
Looking at card games in particular, see how many you can think of that involve using oral language skills, math, hand-eye coordination, problem-solving skills, and an emotional connection to other players.
Have you played cards with your kids lately? Which games are favorites?
10 Toys for a Baby or Toddler that Have High Safety Standards
Finding safe toys for babies and toddlers has gotten harder, with so many recalls happening. However, there are still many toys that are safe for children as birthday and Christmas gifts or for everyday use. Here are 10 toys for babies and toddlers that have been tested for safety. The toys listed below come from companies who have stated that all of their toys meet or exceed the requirements for toy safety, so with that statement in mind, feel free to browse other toys made by the same companies.
*As with any toy, these toys do not replace the need for parental supervision. Accidents can happen, even with the best safety ratings. Always use caution and always supervise your baby or toddler.
**The author is a part of the Amazon Associates Program. This means she earns a small portion of sales generated from clicking on the links in this post and uses it to provide for her family. Said partnership did not influence the opinions on these products. See our full Disclosure Policy for more information.
Being a mom to 6, a parenting writer, as well as a former nanny I know just how important it is for kids to have a variety of good books. New and interesting books should be added often to keep kids interested. Here are a lucky 13 baker's dozen of must-have children's books for gifts or any occasion! Enjoy!
Keeping yourself safe keeps your baby safe during your pregnancy. Part of that involves food. So, what can’t you eat while pregnant and why?
Why Can’t Pregnant Women Just Eat Their Usual Diet?
While eating a healthy amount of balanced nutrients is advised while pregnant, where you get them from is important too. Certain food items can contain dangerous bacteria and contaminants that could be harmful to you and your baby. You may be surprised which items in your regular diet can’t be eaten while pregnant.
Which Foods Are Unsafe During Pregnancy And Why?
The table below outlines foods that are unsafe during pregnancy and why.
UNSAFE FOODS AND WHY THEY ARE UNSAFE
What If A Pregnant Woman Has already Eaten Some Restricted Foods?
If you have already consumed some of these unsafe foods, try not to panic. Most of these foods aren’t going to automatically harm you or your baby. Simply stop eating them at least until after you have your baby and are finished with breastfeeding. Discuss food safety with your OB or midwife so that you both are aware of any potential risks.
When Should A Pregnant Woman Discuss Food Safety With Her Doctor?
Nutrition should be one of the very first discussions with your OB or midwife. If they don’t bring it up, take the initiative. If you have accidentally consumed any of the restricted foods and notice any warning signs after eating them or you have consumed foods with a large mercury concentration, let your doctor know. Only your doctor can tell you the actual risk for your specific situation.
With motherhood comes joys, laughter...and baby weight. With my first child, all the pregnancy weight practically disappeared the day I gave birth. Within a week, the remaining 10 pounds melted off easily. It was almost the same with the second. However, when I got to my 3rd and 4th (and then my 5th and 6th), that was not the case. I had my kids all in sets of two (They are 20 & 19, 14 & 13, and then I have two more under 2), so that added to the baby weight problem. Here’s how I used creativity to lose baby weight from pregnancy and how you can too!
No Time For The Gym? No Problem
Because I have a pretty full schedule as a homeschooling mom who also owns a home-based business along with my life partner, there was no way to be sure I could keep regular gym appointments without going crazy. That left me with a decision. It was either ditch one of the kids' activities, sacrifice some work time, or get creative. I chose to get creative.
Adding To The Existing Routine
Using creativity to lose baby weight may have been the most effective plan for me. Why? It was super-easy to stick to my plan. What I did was add a little exercise to many different daily routines of motherhood. Parenting is a full time job, so there were many things I could add to. Let me explain.
Intensifying Daily Walks With Baby (Or Babies)
Daily walks are a part of our family’s routine, so there was one way to lose baby weight. Just walking (for me) was probably not going to do it, since it is something my body is already accustomed to. I wanted to add more. Since baby number three and four were so close in age, I used a double stroller. That got me thinking. That double stroller was sort of hard to push in certain situations. So, we started taking walks uphill to increase the workout. The slopes put more of the weight of the stroller in my control, making the walk more intense. I did the same thing with baby 5 and 6 and it’s working again!
Stroller Maneuvers That Help Baby Also Help Mom
Another way I used creativity to lose baby weight include workouts involved different maneuvers with the stroller whenever the baby (or babies) wanted to be rocked to sleep in the stroller. This worked out arms, abs, and legs. I later found out that there was an actual workout built around the baby stroller. Based on my experience, I could see that working out. I’ve invented a ton of my own stroller workouts, but there are stroller exercise programs and guides you can purchase for a low fee if you don’t feel like being that inventive. Fitdeck Exercise Playing Cards have illustrated stroller exercise guides.
Meal Prep Workouts
When in the kitchen doing dishes and preparing meals, you can do small things like countertop pushups. Place your hands palm down on the edge of the countertop and extend your legs straight back. You will basically be doing angled pushups against the counter. Opening and closing cabinets is another good one. Do a few sets of ten on each side (rotating in between) to workout your arms.
Your Baby Makes a Great Weight Set
Yes, really. Babies enjoy playing with their moms. Try making motions with your baby that he or she enjoys, such as raising him or her up high slowly and then back down slowly. This works out your arms and gives baby some entertainment too. There are many motions like this that will help you both.
If you are able to and it is practical for your family, breastfeeding actually helps shed those tummy pounds. This is one of the body’s built-in mechanisms for regulating itself after a baby is born. Some moms can’t breastfeed the usual way, but are able to pump. If this is you, pumping should also work similarly, if you are able to do it. If you are unable to breastfeed for whatever reason, be it medical or otherwise, don’t feel bad. Not everyone can do it. As long as your baby is eating, be it breast milk or formula, you’re still doing it right. There are plenty more creative exercises to help out you and baby.
Think Up Your Own Creative Exercises
There actually are many moments during motherhood that can be added to for promoting weight loss. Motherhood in itself really is a workout. For some, like during the infancy of my first two kids, that alone will be enough to shed off those pounds. But, if you have a hard time losing weight or this is not your first birth, I highly recommend adding to normal routine for quick loss of baby weight. Just don't forget to check with your doctor first.
Morning sickness is often one of the first signs of pregnancy. My personal experience and research will help you learn what's normal and when to call your doctor.
Five of the six times I was pregnant, I had awful morning sickness, so I learned quite a bit about it. Some of that knowledge came from doctors, some from trial and error, and some from research.
What Are The Symptoms Of Morning Sickness?
How Often Is Normal?
If you've been feeling under the weather a lot, you may be wondering if it's too much. Is this normal? All women experience bouts of morning sickness in different ways. Some may only feel slightly ill at certain times of the day and some may have symptoms constantly. Any amount of time is "normal", but it's important to see your doctor if the nausea or vomiting is severe.
How Do I Know If My Morning Sickness Is Too Bad?
Only your doctor can tell you for sure if your morning sickness is worrisome. If you don't feel right or your symptoms seem too bad, let your OB or midwife know as soon as possible so they can advise you. Some women can experience an extreme form of morning sickness that can lead to hospitilization. This is called Hyperemesis Gravidarum.
Do I Have Hyperemesis Gravidarum (HG)?
Most pregnant women experience some form of morning sickness, but only a small percentage will experience HG. Here's how to tell if you have HG.
Why Am I Hungry And Nauseous At The Same Time?
This is normal during pregnancy. You might feel nauseous but feel hungry or have a craving at the same time. Sometimes, eating a small amount of food or drinking some water during the nausea can help make it go away. The nausea might be caused by hunger or thirst, but not always. Also, sometimes people can feel hungry when they are actually thirsty. The pangs for both are very similar.
When Will Morning Sickness End?
For many pregnant women, morning sickness starts to slow or stop at or around 12 weeks gestation. Lasting longer can indicate HG, but not always. If this is the only symptom you have for HG, it's probably not a concern. But only your doctor can tell you for sure.
When Should I Consult My Doctor?
Consult your OB or midwife if you have any of the symptoms for HG or you are concerned for other reasons. Even just a feeling is enough reason to ask your doctor to check things out. Having given birth to six kids, with more than one being a high risk pregnancy, I know full well that you can never be too cautious. Your OB or midwife will likely tell you what I would: better to ask about "too many" questions or concerns than not enough.
You’re pregnant and getting heavy cravings or aversions. When do pregnancy cravings start and what’s normal? Should you be concerned?
When Do Pregnancy Cravings Start?
Many women report having pregnancy food cravings as early as just a couple weeks, before they even knew they were pregnant. Others do so a bit later. Most pregnancy food cravings seem to start and occur most often during the first trimester and into the second, many going away by the end of the third trimester. Food cravings might be for something you usually don't eat or you may just want your favorite foods very badly. It might also be a mixture.
What If You Don’t Get Cravings During Pregnancy?
This is actually normal as well. Some pregnant women crave particular foods and some do not. Some women may even have different experiences during different pregnancies. It is perfectly fine not to have food cravings during pregnancy.
Are Pregnancy Food Aversions Normal?
Yes. Some pregnant women detest certain foods they normally like, along with cravings. At times, the aversions are for foods you already don;lt like. They’re just stronger. Some pregnant women get the food aversions but not the cravings. Either is normal.
Is It Normal To Crave Weird Things?
Yes and no. If you are craving foods you don’t usually eat, this is very normal during pregnancy. But if you are concerned or if you start to crave non-food items like ice, detergent, soap, or chalk, talk to your OB or midwife as soon as possible. You might be experiencing PICA, which can indicate a deficiency.
If you just found out you’re pregnant, you may be thinking about when to tell others. Some people base this on when the baby bump starts emerging. So, when does pregnancy show?
When Do First-Time Moms Start To Show?
Many people who are pregnant for the first time will start to show very early on, some as early as 4-12 weeks. But this isn’t true for everyone. So, don't worry if you’re a first-time mom and you don’t show until later. In my personal experience, I actually didn’t show very much until further into the pregnancy and there wasn’t any cause for concern.
When Do Experienced Moms Show?
Those who have had previous pregnancies sometimes don’t sport a visible baby bump until late in the first trimester or even the second. If you’ve had previous pregnancies and your pregnancy shows early, this doesn’t necessarily indicate anything bad. We’re all different. I actually showed early on in all my pregnancies, except the first.
What If I’m Not Average?
Unless your doctor has a concern, then you shouldn’t either. Everyone is different, based on many factors. One woman may gain a lot of weight in the beginning, while another may gain more toward the end. When your pregnancy shows doesn’t necessarily say anything about how healthy your baby is or isn’t.
So, When Does Pregnancy Show?
As you can see, when pregnancy shows can vary greatly. Be prepared with bigger clothes early on. But don’t alarm yourself unnecessarily if you don’t follow the same pattern as someone else. Your OB or midwife will guide you and examine you, as well as inform you if there are any concerns.
Are you craving ice while pregnant? It may or may not be a warning sign. Learn why pregnant women crave ice and what to do about it.
What Does Craving And Chewing Ice While Pregnant Mean?
If you are craving and chewing ice (pagophagia) while pregnant, it means you are doing what about 1 in 5 women do while pregnant. But it can also mean you have a deficiency.
Craving Non-Food Items Is Referred To As PICA
If you crave ice, detergent, soap, clay, chalk, or other non-food items while pregnant, you may be suffering from PICA. Those who suffer from PICA commonly have iron deficiency anemia.
What Can You Do About PICA?
If you believe you are suffering from PICA, it’s important to talk to your doctor. If a deficiency is found, supplements or a diet including more iron-rich foods may be recommended. Only a doctor can diagnose anemia and determine exact treatments. Iron overdose is as dangerous as a deficiency, so be sure to see a medical professional regarding how much you need while pregnant.
What If It’s Not A Deficiency?
Some pregnant women (or any other people) just like and crave ice because they are thirsty or dehydrated. You may even just like the texture. So, before you let another internet article convince you that you have some major problem going on, check with your OB doctor. Oh, and go drink some water and chew that ice you’re craving because PICA or no PICA, it’s still good for you!
Tired of shouting up the stairs to a child who is watching TV instead of cleaning their room? There’s a better way. Learn why this scenario rarely gets positive results and how to get your kids to clean their rooms.
Yelling will likely not resolve too many problems. Sometimes, it can work for the moment, but it also can worsen the issue in the future. Instead, try a little creativity and consistency.
Creativity, in combination with consistency, can play an important role in getting kids to do tasks such cleaning their rooms. Who says chores have to be boring? Why not make them fun?
For preschoolers and toddlers, try having races to the toy box. If a toy grocery cart or wagon is available, the children can pick up more toys at once. Racing with the cart or wagon can be fun. With older kids you may have to try something else.
Often, the reason behind older kids not cleaning is because there is not an exact place for everything. Try taking the kids each on their own separate shopping trip. Allow them to pick out organizational items for their room. To make it more fun, allow them to personalize those items with paint or fabric.
Think about your child's favorite activity and try to incorporate that in cleaning the room. For instance, if your kids enjoy dancing, you can turn on the music. To get your kids to clean their rooms let them know they can dance while cleaning.
Creative ideas do not have to be limited to those above. They may even need to be updated periodically as your kids get bored. Sometimes all that is needed to motivate kids to clean their rooms is a fresh idea that hasn't been used before. Also, this could act as an opportunity for creative play with your child. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, creative play is essential.
If you have instructed your kids to clean their rooms, you must show them you are serious about it, even if it’s fun. Stay in close proximity to the rooms until they are clean and keep finding more fun ways to get the job done so they don’t get bored or lose sight of the task at hand.
It is possible to be fun and serious at the same time. When you are trying to get the kids to clean their rooms with fun and creativity, it should be evident that whether they choose to have fun with it or not, their rooms still need to be cleaned. But make sure it’s their choice. This teaches more responsibility. When combining creativity and consistency, the kids should easily understand that their room is going to get cleaned.
More On Cleaning With Kids:
Upstream Parenting: What To Do When Young Kids Won't Clean
Why is My Child's Room So Messy?
If you’re about to give birth to or adopt a new baby, you may be wondering about infant care. One common question is how many newborn diapers do I need?
How Many Newborn Diapers Do I Need?
Each baby is different, as far as how many diapers are used during the newborn stage. On average, most babies use about 8-12 newborn diapers per day.
How Many Newborn Diapers Should I Buy?
You will use the same amount of diapers per day, whether you are using disposable diapers or cloth diapers. However, with cloth diapers, you can reuse them. So the number you buy will be lower. If you’re using cloth diapers, plan on how many to buy according to how often you can launder the cloth diapers. If you’re using disposable, you of course cannot reuse them, so you will need to buy enough for every use.
Number of Disposable Newborn Diapers to Buy
If you’re like me, you’d rather have a few too many than not enough. So, it’s a good idea to plan on buying enough for at least 12 diapers per day per newborn baby. Depending on your payment schedule, you can stock up accordingly. For instance, if you get paid weekly and want to buy a week’s worth of diapers each time, you would buy a package that has at least 84 diapers or multiple packages that add up to at least that amount.
How Many Disposable Diaper Wipes Do I Need?
Every baby is different. However, with the wipes, you can plan on using at least one for every wet diaper, at least 2-4 for every soiled diaper, and others here and there for wiping hands and faces and other messes. On average, we usually go through at least one refill pack per week per child (about 144 wipes, give or take, depending on brand). Some babies will use more and some less.
Number of Cloth Newborn Diapers to Buy
With cloth diapers as mentioned above, you need to have enough for 8-12 changes per day. If you can wash the cloth diapers daily, 12 diapers may be enough to start with. But if you need to last longer, get enough for the number of days you think will accommodate your laundering schedule. If you can only launder them once per week, you need 80-100 cloth diapers. And don't forget liners. You need the same number of liners as you have diapers because they each need their own. To cut down on space and spending, we like to hand wash each cloth diaper directly after use and hang them to dry on a hanging dry rack.
How Many Cloth Diaper Wipes Do I Need?
Again, this depends on how often you can do laundry. Because cloth wipes are thicker, you may use a few less than disposable. So, plan according to this factor, as well as your laundry schedule. Remember that you can also hand wash these and hang to dry to make sure you always have enough on hand.
Have you ever heard of positive parenting? If you're reading this blog, you likely have. Upstream Parenting is the matured version of this popular parenting method. My Positive Parenting Tips have graduated in my new Upstream Parenting eBook. Be one of the first to try out this kid and growth focused parenting method in an all-inclusive eBook.
I started out writing positive parenting tips many years ago from a small blog, then on many venues (Yahoo being the one most know me for), and also my own site. Over the years, my method really developed and evolved into its own thing, set apart from the usual positive parenting.
It was then that I decided to coin my previous positive parenting method "Upstream Parenting". But readers were looking for a way to have all of those tips in one place, so I started working on a new book. Unfortunately, life got a bit crazy and my work on it stopped for a while.
Guess what? I was recently able to start back up on it and the book is almost finished.
You can get your instant download copy today for only $3.48! (below)
That's a bargain considering the book is packed with well over a hundred parenting tips, growth-focused activities for kids, and explanation on what the method is and how to use it daily (and easily).
To get your eBook at this bargain price, simply use the Buy Now button below. As soon as the book is purchased, you will be taken to the download page to choose and download your file type.
Browse this blog for an idea of what to expect in the book. Expect some extras you won't find here too!
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Relate with your child by using your own childhood.
Remember the things you wanted to do and the places you wanted to go as a kid. Put those things in action with your children (if they're interested), as well as places and things they suggest.
Take them to a beach to collect seashells and to build sand castles.
Save for a trip to Disneyland or Sea World.
Try to expose your children to as much fun as possible.
Being a child only comes once.
Help your children enjoy it by tapping into your own childhood desires.
*Note: The author's Positive Parenting Tips have grown and evolved into what she dubs "Upstream Parenting."
"Julie! I told you to pick up those toys an hour ago. Why are they still there?" If you have young kids and this sounds familiar, all you need is a bit of routine and a dose of fun. As a long-time parent, I know full well that not all kids enjoy cleaning. Some see cleaning as a source of enjoyment. But if that's not your child, you are not alone. When young kids won't clean, it may be time for a new plan. Here are some of the things I have found effective over the years.
Make a chore chart. This helps with organization and also serves as a good reminder and source of motivation. For young kids who can't read, use pictures to depict each chore, rather than words. This way, your child can translate the chart without assistance. Young kids often thrive on independence. At least, that's how all of my kids were when they were small. Therefore, a chore chart they can use without the help of a parent may yield the best results. It also sets the pattern for kids to become responsible for their own actions.
Offer incentive. It's not fair to expect the kids to complete tasks without some kind of incentive. While teaching kids to do some things without being compensated is good, when it comes to chores, I prefer to reward my kids when possible. I leave learning about being unselfish to things like helping others without being asked. We have an elaborate chore chart system that also combines allowance earnings. You may choose to develop another system. Good incentive for young kids could be anything from money to special healthy treats, stickers, and more.
Make it fun. Young kids may not always enjoy cleaning. But they may not think of it as a chore if you make it something fun. We like to dance while cleaning or have cleanup and put away races. Making games out of cleaning up can reduce the grueling effect cleaning up may have on some kids. There's no reason not to make it an enjoyable experience for them and it may set a life pattern of seeing the fun in everything.
Get organized. Sometimes young kids don't clean up because there is no exact place for each item. If there's nowhere obvious to store their items, young kids will be happy with them being on the floor. After all, they can see all their toys that way. Devising an organizational plan that still allows the kids to easily see and grab their items has always helped in our family.
Don't stress. It's easy to panic when your child has thrown everything she owns onto the floor and refuses to pick it up. But as the parent, you should be the calm voice of reason and understanding. Remember that while it can be frustrating, it can be turned around with a little effort. At the end of the day, it is just a mess and not the end of the world. It will get cleaned up when you instruct your child on cleaning and instill some sort of routine.
Be consistent. This is the most important part of any routine you decide to go with. As long as you stick to what is relayed to your child, it will get done. My kids have always been better at cleaning when I make sure they clearly follow my instructions and the routine I lay out. You can't tell them something one day and ignore it or say something else the next. Otherwise, all that happens is they get confused and the room doesn't get clean.
More from Lyn:
Why is My Child's Room so Messy?
Can a House with Kids Be Too Clean?
5 Must-Have Items for Organizing a Kid’s Bedroom
Your older kids won't share and you don't know why. You taught them to share as toddlers. But now all of a sudden they seem quite stingy. It's actually something parents deal with on a regular basis. I have even dealt with this in my own children, as well as those I've nannied in the past. When older kids won't share, I find it doesn't always indicate they are being mean. There may be a deeper issue or maybe even a simple parenting solution.
Get To The Root Of The Issue
It's easy to get frustrated when you think your child should know better. But there may very well be a simple reason behind your child not wanting to share. Is the item something special? Is there another plausible reason? Sit your child down for a long talk '" only you do the listening. Let your child's words dominate. Even if you don't agree, hear what your child is saying and try to understand why sharing seems so out of reach with this item.
Maybe They Don't Have Much
Older kids aren't as prone to being stingy as younger ones. Is your child hoarding a specific item or group of items because they don't have much else? Sometimes when kids don't feel they have very much, they can appear to be stingy with what they do have. It may not be stinginess, but an attempt to protect what they treasure. Some parents will make the mistake of showering them with gifts when they hear this. Buying a few things is fine. But, let them treasure a few special items that they aren't expected to share with everyone.
Are Other Kids Picking On Them, Losing Their Things, Or Bullying?
Sometimes kids don't want to share because other kids are bullying them. Who wants to share with someone who is being mean or taking their toys? Have a talk with your child to make sure this is not what's happening. My older kids have certain things they do not like to share with the younger kids. While the younger kids are not bullying them, they aren't always as responsible with some things. Therefore, the older kids hesitate to share certain items and I am fine with this.
Have You Instilled Compassion?
This is another reason some older kids may not share. If kids are not taught to consider the feelings of others, they really may not understand why they cannot share. Ask them what it feels like when other people do not want to share with them. Be sure they know that what they feel may be exactly what others feel and it isn't nice to make others feel that way. Since this is older kids we're talking about here, you can talk to them like adults. They will understand you.
Show Them What It Feels Like When Others Share
Share something of yours that you treasure. Once you do, have them describe to you how that makes them feel. Most likely, it makes them feel very special. Be sure to point out that the same feelings will be displayed by those they share their things with. They may be smart enough to know this. But perhaps it isn't the first that comes to mind. Sometimes older kids, and even adults, need to be reminded of these things.
Getting to the root of the issue behind older kids refusing to share is as simple as observation. Sit in the sidelines to see what is going on. With a combination of persistence, consistence, and lessons in compassion, your older kids can soon get back to the friendly, caring attitude you know and love.
As a mother to children of various ages and stages, I have studied and dealt with various aspects related to children and sleep. My nannying experience with kids of varied ages also contributed in that regard. So, how much sleep do babies and children need and are your kids getting enough sleep? Read on to find out.
How Much Sleep Do Newborns Need?
A newborn baby may or may not form an exact pattern at the start. It may even out more after a couple weeks. It is true that newborns are likely to spend around 16 - 20 hours of the day sleeping. But, keep in mind that those hours are not always consecutive and shouldn’t last more than 3 hours at a time. Newborn babies need to eat often, at least every 3 hours, sometimes sooner. Do not skip any feeding times.
Sleep Tips and Advice For 3-6 Month Old Babies
From 3 to 6 months, a baby may sleep 5 hours all together during the day and 10 at night. 6-8 of the night-time sleep hours might be consecutive. From 6 - 12 months, a baby should sleep around 3 hours during the day and 11 (in total, not consecutive) at night time.
To encourage good sleeping habits from the beginning, wait just a couple moments after babies (older than 3 months) cry to respond. The reason for this is that the baby may not always need you. The crying may be occurring in the baby's sleep. If after a couple moments the baby is still crying, then check the basic needs, such as diaper changing, feeding, burping, or replacing the pacifier.
Try not to turn on lights or play with babies too much when checking on them at night. Too much stimulation can cause babies to think that bedtime is still playtime. You should instead be teaching the baby that night time is bedtime, so it’s clear that time slot is for sleep. This will help your baby sleep better. If your baby is crying more than a few moments, be sure not to ignore him or her. This is a sign that something is needed.
Sleep And Babies 6 Months and Older
If the baby is over 6 months, there should be no feedings in the middle of night. Simply comfort the baby for a couple minutes at the crib-side so the baby can ease him or herself back to sleep. Comforting might be patting or rubbing the baby's back. Remember not to actually pick the baby up (unless they are in distress) or it could set a pattern of the baby wanting to be held and played with by you every night.
This can be difficult to do, but isn't good for a baby's sleep habits. A baby needs to be able to sleep soundly. Change the diaper or replace the pacifier if necessary. Also, of course, keep an eye on your baby for safety purposes. Never let a baby cry longer than a few moments, as crying is an indication something is wrong, even if you can’t figure it out. Remember that this is a baby’s only way to communicate.
How Much Sleep Do Kids Ages 1 - 5 Need?
By this age, you should have a bedtime routine established for your child, such as taking a bath, brushing teeth, and then reading a story. If the routine, whatever it is, is followed every night, bedtime should run fairly smoothly. The exact routine is not important, as that will vary from family to family and maybe even child to child. What matters is that you have some routine and that it is followed at a certain time each night.
Kids ages 1 - 3 sleep around 10 -14 hours. Some of those hours may be during the day for certain kids, while others may sleep all of them at night and skip a nap. Not all kids need a nap during the day, so if your child does not seem to easily fall into a nap routine, consider taking away nap time altogether and possibly opting for an earlier bedtime. Neither way is the best way for every single kid. All kids are different.
From ages 4 - 5, 10 -12 hours of sleep is average. Like the younger set, what time those hours are received is not as important as the fact they get them. For instance, one of my kids at age 4 would take 3 hour long naps, while another, when 5, didn’t nap at all. Not all kids are the same in this regard.
As long as a routine is established, it matters not whether kids have a daily nap for some of those hours or the hours are all taken at night. As long as kids are getting a normal average of sleep hours, there should be no concern. However, if kids ages 1 - 5 are awaking several times at night, the pediatrician should be consulted.
How Much Sleep Do Kids Ages 6 - 10 Need?
Elementary-aged kids need about 9 to 11 hours of sleep. An exact number of hours can be established by paying attention to your child. Irritability or hyperactive behavior may indicate the need for more sleep. Not enough sleep can actually worsen conditions such as ADD or ADHD. For this age, most of those hours would occur at night.
Don't forget that even kids beyond the toddler stage will need some quality time with parents before bedtime. Even though children can read on their own at this stage, they might still like a bedtime story. Some may prefer to read to you. Others may prefer to play a game of some sort with you before bedtime. All of my children liked to play games before bed at this age, but two always preferred to read to themselves, rather than be read to.
The activity itself matters not as much as the quality time and the routine. It's also a great idea to have little talks with kids before bedtime. This can be a good time for private one-on-one discussions about any worries on the child's mind or just wishes the child has, or anything else he or she wants to say. This can relieve tension, which is a great mood relaxer for bedtime. If your child has problems falling or staying asleep, be sure to contact the pediatrician.
How Much Sleep Do Older Kids or Teens Need?
Most teens need about 8 or 9 hours of sleep. The problem with that is that they may not get it. Some may be up doing homework late at night. Others might be talking on the phone, emailing friends from the computer, or texting friends from their cell phone. Also, during adolescence, the body goes through physical and hormonal changes that may cause lack of sleep. If your teen seems restless or unable to sleep, it is best to see a doctor to determine if there are any sleep issues that can be resolved.
To ensure that they get their sleep, you may have to establish rules about appropriate times for homework, computers, and phones. Sometimes you'll have to do this more than once. Since teens are almost adults, they may feel as though they can do what they want. However, until they are 18, you are still responsible for their well-being. Be sure they get adequate sleep. It is essential to their grades in school, as well as their overall well-being.
Figuring Out Individual Sleep Needs
Each child's sleep requirements will depend on more than one factor. For one thing, not all of them will have exactly the same requirements because each person is different. However, there are ranges or average amounts of time that each child will likely fall between, depending on their age and other variances. Sleep patterns for children should also be discussed with the child's pediatrician.
If your child is having trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, or getting too much sleep, try some of our other info on sleep and contact your child's pediatrician.
Kids need to learn there are consequences for every action. But what if time-outs just aren't cutting it? Do you revert to spanking? If your opinion on that method is like mine, then spanking is not an option. For some it might be. But I personally believe it isn't necessary. So what do you do when you feel this way? As an experienced mom, I can tell you there are many alternatives appropriate for each unique situation.
My kid is not phased by time-outs. Some kids just won't sit still in time out, especially smaller kids who are full of energy. Yet others don't seem to really care one way or the other and may go back to the behavior that them into it in the first place. If time-outs won't cut it for your kid, you do have other options. Time-out can be a good aid when it comes to disciplining kids. But it certainly is not the be all and end all and spanking is not the only alternative.
Spanking? No way! Each person has their own method and some, like me, are not fond of spanking. If you don't want to use this method and time-outs are not working, don't worry. There are plenty other methods to use. While it sometimes seems so, spanking and time-outs are far from the only options when it comes to discipline. I prefer to use positive discipline with my kids, which basically refers to any method that teaches the lesson in a positive way.
Think about the offense. When you want to teach your child a lesson, think about what was done first. The punishment should fit the crime. Don't be too harsh for a mild offense. This could actually cause resentment instead of teaching your child a lesson. At the same time, don't take serious offenses too lightly. The point is to teach kids there are consequences and also to teach them how to learn from their mistakes. If you want to follow positive parenting methods, whatever method you choose should involve something that will do both in a positive way.
Why did your child misbehave? Before you can come up with a plan that will teach your child a lesson, you first need to know the reason for the ill behavior. Was your child simply confused at the correct behavior? Did the child not realize the action was wrong? Did the child feel bullied or pressured? Was the child purposefully acting out or being mean? Think about what led to the misbehavior and develop your action plan from there.
What lesson are you trying to teach? Are you trying to teach your child to think about a better response next time? Are you trying to teach your child what's right and what isn't? Is your child hitting and you want to instill why that isn't a good thing to do? Do you want your child to know that walls are not for coloring, but coloring books are perfect for it? Think about the exact lesson you want your child to gain and go from there.
Put it all together. I find that when I consider the offense, the reason behind it, and what lesson I need my kids to learn, I come up with the best course of action. Sometimes, when in the heat of the moment and trying to think quick, parents can make the wrong discipline choices. We've all been there. Parenting is always a work-in-progress and we live and learn. Each family will have a different course of action that works for them in each situation. The important thing is that your motive always remains to do what's in the best interest of your child.
More from Lyn:
Positive Parenting Does Not Mean Zero Discipline
Easy Discipline Tricks for Babies
Guide to Positive Discipline for Children
*Note: The author's positive parenting method has evolved into what she calls Upstream Parenting.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Many children are afraid of the dark and parents are constantly searching for new ways to lessen that fear, and preferably make it non-existent. Throughout the years, parents have tried and invented many methods for this purpose. However, for some reason, it still remains as one of the many quests of raising children. On my quest to solve this mystery, I tried many things. However, none of the traditional ideas seemed to work. That's when I was forced to use my creative side. I decided that to get rid of the fear of the dark, we would have to teach any children with it that the dark was fun. Hence, the "dark party" was born.
What is a Dark Party?
A dark party is simply a party in the dark. It is a party in which the dark is celebrated by playing games and doing things you would normally do with the lights on. By doing regular everyday things, as well as playing games and having fun, it may help "normalize" the concept of darkness in a child's mind, which could help to take away some of the fears associated with being in the dark. A dark party can last any length of time the children are comfortable with. I find that one hour seems to be the best.
Planning & Organizing the Dark Party
The first step in planning a dark party for your child or children is deciding upon who needs to attend. A child who is afraid of the dark will feel more secure if people he or she feel safe with attend the party. This means the parents and siblings should be there. All children in the family who are afraid of the dark should attend the dark party. Also, if your child has friends who are afraid of the dark, invite those children and their parents to the dark party as well. The dark party should take place when it is dark outside, unless you have a room that will not be affected by the light outside. Have an emergency flashlight on hand in case of an accident or a child getting too scared. That way it will be easier to get to the light if necessary.
Explaining The Dark Party to the Children
Shortly before the dark party begins, you'll want to explain to the children the meaning of the dark party. Explain to them that the lights will go out soon and that there is nothing to be afraid of in the dark. The dark can be fun. Let them know that the party will help them so they won't be afraid of the dark anymore. Be sure they know they will be getting treats and playing games, just like any other party, but it will all be done in the dark.
On To The Dark Party
To hold the dark party, simply play the games listed below and give children treats during the time you wish. Parents and others there for support should participate in the game-playing. Having the light for significant amounts of time might encourage night lights, instead of encouraging the children not to have fear, so be sure that your dark party stays dark, unless someone’s fear of the dark gets too strong. Parents should have any treats within easy reach, possibly inside of a gift bag with handles, so that it can be held on to during the party.
Dark Party Game #1: Dark Charades
This is played like charades, but in the dark. Instead of motions, the players will make sounds. The players cannot speak words, but can make sound effects to hint as to what they are portraying. To play, the first acting player decides what he or she wants to do and gives a small hint in one word to the other players. He or she might say "movie" or "thing". The acting player must then make sounds that will get the players to guess what he or she is portraying. The first player to guess correctly then trades places with the acting player. The game continues as long as the host or guests would like.
Dark Party Game #2: What's My Secret?
For this game, all of the players should be seated in a straight line. The first player tells a secret to the next person and that person whispers it to the next until the secret has been passed to the last person at the end of the line. That person tells the secret out loud. It may be quite different than the original. The original secret teller then tells what was actually said. The end result is often pretty funny. This is similar to the long-played game of “telephone”. The main difference is that this one is played completely in the dark.
Dark Party Game #3: Where Are You?
This is similar to the popular game of Hide N' Seek. The player who is "it" will just stay where he or she is and close the eyes and count to ten. While he or she is counting, the other players will hide. All players should hide in the same room. Players may hide behind objects, but not underneath or inside objects. Once the person who is "it" counts to ten, all players must be hidden. "It" will search for players asking "Where are you?" Once they’re all found, the last person to be found (or the person who cannot be found) is named as the new “it”. Because this game is played in the dark, it will be slightly trickier than the original.
Dark Party Game #4: Silly Stories
This one is simple. Party guests should make up silly stories together. Each person says one sentence at a time until players end the story. This can be done over and over. These can get quite funny. This is a good way to get rid of a fear of the dark, since it gets very fun.
Dark Party Game #5: Guess The Treat
For this game, each guest eats a treat and must guess what they've eaten. Be sure to account for any food allergies beforehand. If anyone is allergic to anything, don't put it in any of the treats, since you will be doing this game in the dark.
Remember that the author is not a medical or psychological professional. This method may not work on all children and it's possible that some won't be open to trying it or might be traumatized by it. The author has had success using this with her children and it is her sincere hope that it can help many other children combat this fear as well. The author is not responsible for any consequences that may arise from attempting this method with children. One should use their own discretion and the advice of a medical/psychological professional when working with a child's fears.
Does your child have a fear of the dark? Have you conquered a fear of the dark with a different method? Have you tried the author's method with either success or failure? Leave your comments and suggestions below.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
"Waa!" "Waa!" "Waa!" "Waa!" - It's 3 o'clock in the morning and the two-month-old is up...again. This is the fourth night in a row. She needs sleep, but can't seem to get there. Neither can the rest of the house. She isn't hungry. Her diaper is fresh. She does not seem to want anything, but to cry. The soothing techniques are simply not working. Parents of babies with colic will recognize an experience all too similar to this.
It can be frustrating to no end when a baby is upset and you feel as if you cannot help. I have been through the experience of dealing with babies with colic several times. Two of my own children had colicky tendencies and I have also been a nanny or babysitter to babies with colic.
I have found many ways to help soothe babies with colic through trial and error, as well as advice from various medical experts. I hope my discoveries and lessons learned can help others in a similar situation.
Soothing Sounds for Babies With Colic: Running Faucet
Laugh all you want. Then, go try it. Sometimes the most unconventional methods are the best ones for babies with colic. Many babies love the sound of running water. Okay, so this one could get costly and wasteful. An easier and more cost-effective way to use this soothing sound for babies with colic is to visit soundsnap.com. There, you will find various faucet sounds and other soothing sounds that babies may enjoy. The sound files are free to listen to and download. Put your music player on the repeat option for the best effect.
Soothing Sounds for Babies With Colic: Soft Native American Music
One of my favorite ways to help soothe babies with colic is playing soothing sounds and music. Most babies with colic love to hear the sound of music or other soft sounds. A fussy or colicky baby will respond the best to softer sounds. Loud or jarring sounds are probably not a good idea for soothing babies with colic.
Because part of our heritage includes a Native American background, along with our vast array of musical tastes, our family enjoys listening to a variety of music sung or played by Native Americans. Here are some of the many Native American songs that I have found to be soothing to babies with colic.
*Dawa (The Cradle Song) - Sacred Spirit
*Cherokee Morning Song - Walela
*Vision Quest (Dreamer) - Airo
*Brave Hearts - Brulé
*Lay-O-Lay Ale Loya (The Counterclockwise Circle Dance) - Sacred Spirit
*Amazing Grace (sung in Cherokee) - Walela
*(I Used To) Ride Like the Wind - Airo
Sacred Spirit, Walela, Brulé, and Airo can be purchased new or used at Amazon.com. If you would like to sample any of these or try them on babies with colic before buying, some can be sampled at Amazon. At the time this content was being written, I was also able to find all of these on YouTube.com using the YouTube search feature. A few more Native American musical artists worth looking up for use on babies with colic include Manantial, Jackie Bird, Enigma, and Oliver Shanti.
Soothing Sounds for Babies With Colic: Traffic
For some babies, the sounds of the traffic flow can be soothing. If you live in the city, you may be able to record your own soothing traffic sounds with ease. If not, you can do a Web search for short clips of traffic noise you can download for free. Simply download the one (or more) of your choice and when you play the file, set your computer's music player to repeat the file or files.
Soothing Sounds for Babies With Colic: Heartbeat
This sound effect can be achieved naturally by allowing baby to hear your heartbeat. However, if you'd like to have a hard copy of a heartbeat, try BabySleepNoise.com. As long as the use is within the terms stated, you can download several comforting noises for free, including a heartbeat.
Soothing Sounds for Babies With Colic: Rainforest
Sometimes natural sounds can do the trick of soothing a baby with colic. Nature sounds CDs can be purchased at most major retailers. However, if you need something fast, you can also try some free nature sounds by searching YouTube or the Web.
Bonus Tips to Soothe & Comfort Babies With Colic
Tummy Rocking -- Lie baby on tummy across your lap, across your knees. Sway the legs back and forth in a rocking motion, taking care to support baby safely. I have found this helpful in relieving some of the gas and upset stomach that babies with colic can experience. Coupled with soothing music, this was always the best way to soothe and comfort babies with colic.
Change Baby’s Diet -- Sometimes eliminating things from baby's diet can ease the stomach. Lactose intolerance or starting baby on juices and solids too early can cause gas and excessive crying that mimics symptoms of colic.
Use Proper Tummy Care Motion -- Do not bounce baby up and down. While this is a common way to soothe a baby, if a baby is colicky or has GERD or acid reflux, this can actually make the symptoms worse. Instead try a slow, gentle rock or rhythmic pats on the baby's back. Babies with colic sometimes need extra care with their stomachs.
Remain Calm -- Sometimes just remaining calm yourself can soothe babies with colic. Babies mimic the emotions of their parents and caregivers. The persistent crying of a colicky baby takes patience on the parent or caregiver's part. If you feel yourself getting stressed, it is okay to lie the baby down in the crib while you take a breather. The baby is better off there than in the arms of a stressed out person. Once you can regain your composure, resume calming the baby.
The Power of Love -- Never underestimate the power of simple love and care. A little bit goes a long way, but a large amount can make all the difference. Through love and care that you can often accidentally stumble upon the most effective methods for soothing babies with colic.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Tired of that pouty toddler lip sticking out everywhere you go? Toddlers may use the moody, pouty lip to indicate frustration, sadness, and even to get attention. Why is your toddler pouting and how can you tame the toddler pout? I've had many years of first-hand nanny and parenting experience. Because of that, I can honestly tell you the simplest tips are the ones that usually work best. These methods have been tested by me time and time again and proven effective for taming the pouty face on many different toddlers.
Why the pouty face? Getting to the bottom of things should help with a resolution. Figure out why your child is pouting. Did someone take your toddler's favorite toy? Did daddy just leave for work? Use that information to come up with a quick action plan for getting that pouty lip back in its place. It may be as simple as giving back the toy someone took away. But again, it may not. If a toddler's daddy just left for work, you can't reverse that. So you'll need another plan. Sometimes, no matter the reason, a quick solution is best for your toddler's sake and yours. Who doesn't get a pouty face themselves when seeing a sad kid?
Laugh it off! This is my absolute favorite method for banishing the pouty lip? Why? Because it's fun for the child, as well as the parent. The next time your toddler sticks out that pouty lip, go for humor. Do something completely funny and completely unrelated and break out into laughter. Turn that pout into a big smile. If you can make your toddler giggle instead of pouting, that's even better. You know your child best, so pull out your funniest tricks. Use props if necessary. Anything that makes your toddler happy is good.
I can pout like that, too! Yet another fun method, this gets your toddler thinking about things from another perspective. Get down on your toddler's level and stick out your pouty lip, too. See how long that pouty lip stays in place. The art of mimicking is often enough to get a toddler to understand how silly the pouty lip may be. Now, this method is more for toddlers who are overusing the pouty lip to get attention. You don't want to mock a child who is hurt or upset. That may come across as uncaring.
Distraction is a beautiful thing. If the pouty face blues are persistent, try distraction. Use your toddler's favorite activities or items to draw attention away from the upsetting moment. Start playing with a favorite toy or reading a favorite book. It's interesting to see how quickly a toddler can become interested in a new activity. Your toddler may still pout at the beginning of an activity, but once engagement in the activity happens, the pouty lip will be no more. It may be tricky keep a toddler interested at first, but if you make it fun, that pouting face will eventually disappear.
Hug that pouty lip goodbye! Sometimes all a pouty-lipped toddler needs is a simple hug. Good old comfort never hurt anyone. In fact, perhaps this was all that was needed all along. Your toddler may just be using the only way he knows to get attention. Even toddlers who are talking may still have some lingering baby habits. Remember that as a baby, your toddler had to be creative in getting your attention. That may still hold true in certain cases. Sometimes the best forms of communication are motions and sound effects. The pouty lip may just mean your toddler needs some extra love.
*Note: The author's "Positive Parenting" method has grown and evolved into what she dubs "Upstream Parenting."
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
"But if we move, how can I see my friends?" "That's a really long way away from Granny's house. When do I get to see her?" These are some of the questions kids may ask when moving. They will likely be dealing with many difficult transitions. As a parent who has dealt with this type of scenario more than once, here are some of my best positive parenting methods for helping kids transition during a move.
Be quiet and listen. Before explaining a multitude of things about your move, listen to how your child is feeling. Take him for a walk or relax in the backyard and just let him say what he feels. Sometimes just letting everything out, knowing someone hears you, is helpful. This also gives you some insight into what is needed to help him feel better. It's easier for kids to transition when they know they are heard and that their concerns matter.
Find solutions for keeping in touch with friends and relatives. If you're only moving across town, it should still be relatively easy to keep up with friends and relatives that once lived nearby. But if your child will need to leave them in another state or country, alternative solutions will be needed. Email, Facebook, a cell phone, or messenger apps are just some of the ways to keep in touch. Be creative and figure out what works for your child, depending on age and preferences. It's easier to transition to a move when familiar people aren't out of reach.
Be sure the child knows the reasons for moving. Even if they don't express it, children might feel like a move is their fault. This can especially be true if the move is due to divorce or similar situations. Make the transition more smooth by explaining to your children the reasons for the move. Make sure they know that the move is not their fault.
Remain positive about the move. Regardless of the reason for moving, keep it positive. Represent the good aspects of moving to your child. It's alright to discuss some of the things the family doesn't like about moving. But don't forget to also talk about the good things. Are you closer to a nice, new school? Closer to family? Maybe there is an area attraction the kids would enjoy. It's easier to transition when the good things about it are made obvious.
Be understanding. Sometimes no matter what you say or do, a child is going to be unhappy about the move, at least at first. Lend an ear and an open mind and heart. Even if it isn't possible to go back to the way things were before, your child needs to know that you understand his feelings. You can tell him your concerns as well and how you are dealing with them. You can also just be a shoulder and source of comfort.
In time, your child will very likely transition to the move and before you know it, he'll have new friends to hang out with. The important thing is that you be there for him until he does.
*I originally published a version of this via Yahoo Contributor Network
Positive Parenting Tips: How to Show Kids They Matter
For whatever reason, kids can often feel as though they are the odd one out - that no one understands them. You know full well that your kids matter. Show them just how much with some positive parenting. Most parents do care and want their kids to know that, but some just aren't sure how to put feelings into action.
Give them choices. Although you may want everything to go a certain way, kids should be a part of family decisions, too. Sometimes - maybe many times - not everyone is going to agree on things. Let the kids decide what to do whenever possible. This shows them their thoughts matter to you. When kids know they matter, they may be more inclined to respect your wishes for decisions you must make.
Respect their opinions. Even when their opinions differ from yours - and they will sometimes - respect what your kids think. Things don't always have to go their way. But let them be individuals. Sooner or later your child is going to grow up. He needs to know his voice matters to be respected in the world outside your home. Even inside the home, your child's opinions and insight should count.
Give them freedom. There are limits to this for safety reasons, of course. But give your kids some freedom. They don't need to be right next to you at every moment. Trust them to do age-appropriate tasks without your assistance. It can be a parental instinct to be a mother hen or a father lion. That's part of being a parent, but if we don't let them do some things for themselves, they will never learn.
Let them teach you about their favorite things. You may be old and wise, but kids have so much to teach us adults. Listen. Let your child know that her interests are important to you. Sometimes what kids are interested in don't line up with those of their parents. Still, you need to be supportive of your child's individuality. Don't try to force your interests on him and don't attempt to keep him from his unless they are harmful in nature.
Show affection even when they misbehave. Even when kids misbehave, they still deserve your love. Discipline must take place. But that doesn't mean a hug isn't in order. In fact, that may be exactly what the doctor has ordered. Show your child his feelings matter to you by still showing affection, even in difficult times.
*I originally published this via Yahoo Contributor Network
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About the Book:
The Upstream Parenting method will help you learn how to connect with your children, raise them to be independent thinkers, and how to gently guide them to succeed on their self-chosen path. Upstream Parenting is a proven child and growth-focused method that has been put to use with all six of my children, as well as with countless kids I've nannied over the years.
What is Upstream Parenting?
The Upstream Parenting journal contains articles full of tips based on the parenting method invented and made popular
by Lyn Lomasi.
You may know of her original method, first coined "Positive Parenting". It has since followed the tides of life into its new moniker of Upstream Parenting.
Lyn Lomasi is founder and owner of the Brand Shamans Content Community. Services include ordained soul therapy and healing ministry, business success coaching, business success services, handcrafted healing jewelry, ethereal and anointing oils, altar and spiritual supplies and services, handcrafted healing beauty products, and more!
Lyn is your brand healing, soul healing, marketing & content superhero to the rescue! While rescuing civilians from boring business practices and energy vampires, this awesomely crazy family conquers evil and creates change.
They live among tigers, dragons, mermaids, unicorns, and other fantastic energies, teaching others to claim their own power and do the same.
By supporting us, you support a dedicated parent, healer, and minority small business that donates to several causes. Profits from our all-inclusive store, Intent-sive Nature support these causes and our beautiful family!
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