Monday Moments ~ The Boundaries of a Toddler

Little angel not quite so angelic anymore? Toddlers love to test boundaries as they discover the world around them. One time or another as parents, we will share a not so soothing moment when our child decides to test the waters of back talk. Here are a few simple ways to redirect and reinstate the proper way to react to and respond when spoken to.

1. Plan ahead. Decide on a consequence that you will implement if your child talks rudely to you. Examples include watching a favorite TV show, taking a favorite toy away for a day or to, or sending them to time out. The rule of thumb for a time out is a minute for each year of their age. So a five year old, will receive a 5 minute time out, a 6 year old a 6 minute time out and so on.

2. Respond decisively. When your child speaks rudely, say “That language (or tone) is not acceptable. As a result, I am taking (fill in the blank) away for today.”

3. Follow through with no further discussion. Do not offer a second chance. Do not negotiate. Avoid the word “if” (as in “If you do that again, I’m going to…”). It makes you sound weak instead of decisive and your child will pick up on that.

4. On a related note, ignore any back talk associated with the consequence. Don’t get drawn into explaining or justifying your position. On the other, don’t punish your child again if he gives you back talk when you enforce the consequence. Treat it as one incident.

MONDAY MOMENTS ~ Baby’s Very First Birthday

Baby’s 1st Birthday……
This is truly one of the best and most memorable birthdays you will celebrate with your child. 
During your little one’s first year of life, there will be so many milestones reached, changes in his or her appearance and the blossoming of their unique personality.
Make their 1st birthday special by celebrating with close friends and family members. 
You may choose to host a celebration at your home or out at a restaurant. Wherever you choose, it will be special and so magical.
Some things to remember when planning a party:
Create your own invitations or have them printed at a local party shop. Whatever you choose, be sure to save one to add to your little one’s baby book. 
When you order a cake, order a separate cake to let baby dive into! Although it is messy and your angel will require a bit of extra scrub time in the bath, it will be worth it. The pictures you’ll take will be priceless!
Thank you notes are a must. In a world full of social media, we often do not take the time to write a hand-written note anymore. Taking the time to do so after baby’s party will be a welcome surprise and thoughtful reminder to your loved ones.
Baby’s 1st year flies by. Preserve the memories. You’ll look back on these precious times over and over again throughout the years.

Stress Free Sleep Schedules


As parents, many of us cannot wait to “hit the sack” after a long day. Yet children never want to sleep. Or at least as parents, that is often how many of us feel. Why won’t my kids just go to bed? Perhaps they’re afraid they’ll miss out on something or may be struggling with being afraid of the dark. Whatever the reason, at least one time or another we wrestle with this issue as parents.

In a study of seventy-four 6 to 12 year olds, researchers found that the children generally had more trouble with their schoolwork and more attention problems during the week when they stayed up late each night.  This study included healthy grade-schoolers without sleep or academic problems. During one week, they followed their normal sleep routine, with younger children getting about 10 hours each night and older children getting 8 to 9 hours. On another week, the children stayed up later than usual and got only 6 1/2 to 8 hours of sleep, depending on their age. On the third week, all of the children followed an “optimized” sleep schedule and got no fewer than 10 hours of sleep per night. (Source: The Medical Journal of Sleep Dec. 2005)

According to this study, an optimized sleep schedule consisted of no fewer than 10 hours of sleep each night. 

If you wake him or her up at 7:00 am each morning, they need to be asleep no later than 9:00 pm. Most children do not fall asleep as soon as they climb into bed. Drifting off to dreamland does take time. That said, a bed time of 8:00 pm or 8:30 pm is by no means unreasonable.

So, the next time your child says they are not tired, you’ll know that regardless how they feel, their little bodies need their rest.

Monday Mayhem…Who Says I Need Potty Training?

I have 3 children. All of which fell into the potty training mainstream at different ages and stages. I truly found that your child will know when he/she is ready. Pushing too early or waiting too late can cause tantrums in the learning process. You know your child best, and as a mother, you’ll just know when your sweetness is ready for big kid pants! Here are a few tips to make the transition a bit easier when it’s time to take the plunge…..
Bribing – Yep. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. But why not try? With 2 of my children when they completed a 5 minute potty break, when they successfully “went” they received an M&M. Not a bag of M&M’s, one M&M. A small piece of chocolate is like an entire chocolate bar to you and I. This also helps teach the importance of hand washing after going to the bathroom. No M&M until your sweet little fingers are squeaky clean!
Books – Reading material is a must during potty training. There are some great books out on the market that teach your angel all about the potty, but just a stack of his/her favorite books is just as great. Keep a little basket next to your child’s potty. Let them choose one to read each time they make a trip. You’ll often find your child will sit longer with a book too. Giving them ample time to actually go.
Praise, Praise, Praise! – When your child goes potty, praise him/her each and every time. A sticker chart is also great too. Make your child feel like a superstar during the entire potty training timeframe. So important!

Crafts For Kids – Spectacular Summer Sand Art

This kid-friendly introduction to sand painting transforms a favorite backyard building material into a magical art supply. On those hot summer days, why not let your little ones let their imagination run wild with sand art? You’ll treasure their little creations for years!

We like using salt shakers for the sand because they’re easy for little hands to hold, and with just a bit of tape stuck to the lid, you can control the speed of the granules coming out of the bottle.
Materials Needed:
Craft knife (for you, mom)
Colored card stock or construction paper
White and clear Con-Tact paper
Colored sand (available at craft stores)
Salt shakers or other empty containers
Clear tape

Use a craft knife to create a frame by cutting out the center of the card stock, leaving a 1-inch border. This is your piece of the project, mom!

Trim the Con-Tact paper so that it’s slightly smaller than the frame, then set the Con-Tact paper face down and peel off the backing. Carefully lay the frame over the sticky surface and press it in place.

Pour the sand into the salt shakers (or other containers), then put on the lids and cover some of the holes with tape. Give your child the bottles and let him pour the sand over the sticky surface — one color at a time or all at once, as he likes. Dump off the extra sand as he fills the space. When he’s done, you can set a piece of clear Con-Tact paper over the front to help preserve the design. This will also keep any loose sand from ending up on your floor.

Have fun creating!