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Both of my older girls have dropped their afternoon naps a little after their third birthday. As devastating as it can feel to lose that glorious time of uninterrupted nap time bliss, we have transitioned them to afternoon “rest time” which has worked really well overall. So, if your little one has stopped napping, take a deep breath, it’s going to be ok! Here are some tips for rest time magic: Set the expectation for rest time. Don’t start doing outings or running errands or letting them watch a show during that usual nap time. It will be hard at first, but if you set the expectations right away, they’ll adjust! Start small. It is unlikely that your child...
I took a snapshot of my kids this morning. I intend to keep it close by, so it can serve as a benchmark. We have reached a turning point in our family. We have finally arrived at the point in life that most parents of small kids look to with anticipation for what feels like forever. Diapers have all been thrown away. Bottoms are being independently wiped. Mouths are being fed by utensils independently held the correct way (Well, mostly). As parents, we spend so many years training our children up to get to this point. Every time my kid runs her own bathwater, ties his own shoes, or fixes his own bowl of cereal, I almost want to run around the house with...
Dear Tiny Yogurt Handprint, This is the 5th morning you and I meet like this at my dresser drawer. It makes me chuckle, because there was once a time when the first sight of you would have sent me dashing for the Pledge. It’s been days though, and I still haven’t touched you. Boy, has motherhood changed me. Initially, I chalked it up to the fact that I haven't stopped running around chasing after your artist long enough to get rid of you. However, even when I found the time, I stopped myself. I now realize that I'm pretty fond of you, and I think I've become attached. More than that, I imagine the day you stop popping up on every...
"I am not going to make it ALL summer with my kids home." "I count down the days until they return to school." I hear it ALL. THE. TIME. I am so sure that many of you can relate. It is overwhelming to have your kiddos, with such short attention spans, and such loud voices, home all summer. I am here to give you all the early childhood educator tips that will make your summer a little less chaotic and a little more enjoyable. My favorite advice to ever give is: FIND A ROUTINE. I know, easier said than done...BUT...it can be done! Start with the little things, meals at the same time each day. This adjust your child's mind and body to meet your...
I have four-year-old twins, one boy and one girl. My boy has been on the struggle bus hard lately. He has had a lot of feelings that little kids shouldn’t have to worry about. He’s been scared, anxious, worried, and even angry. He expresses worry about death and about whether or not mommy and daddy will come home. He’s had major separation anxiety, mostly with leaving me to go to school. We have tried narrowing down the trigger to this behavior, it could be the fact that I recently had surgery or that his dad was on an outage at work and was gone from home more than usual. He panics, he screams, kicks, hits, and you cannot get...
Navigating sibling squabbles is part of my daily life. Like many siblings, our three and six-year-old daughters are often playing happily and often fighting. And as often happens, the process of parenting our girls through hard moments reveals a lot of what is going on in my own heart as well. Learning what to say and when to say it feels like an unending journey as a mama, with plenty of opportunities to do it right and make mistakes.  The other day, we were in the backyard and our older neighbor came to say hi. This woman is precious and gentle and a bit dignified. As we chatted and caught up, the girls were playing nearby. Suddenly there was some...
My best friend Katelyn and I have been discussing Twilight for a couple months now. Twilight was THE teenage romance series, while we were in middle school and high school. It is also a perfect example of emotional abuse, which, by the way, sets a great stage for physical abuse. Wind Goodfriend Ph.D. does a great job of naming a few of the thousands of examples of abuse Edward displays: He stalks Bella He encourages Bella to have as little interaction as possible from anyone outside his family He preys on her low self esteem He damages her vehicle so she can’t get away Before you go on assuming he was doing this to protect Bella, I just want to point...
I’ve always been the type of person that had absolutely no idea what to do or say when a loved one was hurting. I’ve always felt absolutely useless in these situations and as if I needed to step aside and let an adult handle it. Here are some things that stuck with me during a time I needed help: Don’t try to fill the silence. My best friend once said, “There’s not anything you can say to make it better, but there’s a lot you can say to make it worse.” Just let her be sad, hurt, angry, etc. It’s kind of selfish to fill silence just because you’re uncomfortable anyway, right? Buy a houseplant. Even if a mom thinks she has...
“Mommy, read.” As annoying as these words are to hear at bedtime some nights when we’ve already read four books, I still love them deep down. I love that I’m raising a reader. I’ve been reading to my daughter since she was a newborn. Don’t get ahead here and think I’m one of “those moms” that had reading all planned out, doesn’t let her get do screen time, etc. I’d bet money my daughter gets more screen time than your kid. No, I didn’t intend to be a reading mom. One of my great friends teaches elementary school. She told me a few weeks after having my daughter to start reading to her, even if it was just news articles. So, I started...

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