Posted by TinyTotties on January 31 2011
Some children love their baths and others seem to scream any time you mention getting into the tub. If your child is a reluctant bather here are some ideas to try that might make bath time a little more enjoyable for both you and baby.
Stock Up on Bath Toys
Bath time needs to be considered fun time by your child. Take them to the store and have them choose a couple of new bath toys. Put these special toys away and only let your child enjoy them when in the tub. Every child will have different favorite toys for bathing. Some love bubbles or bath crayons and others prefer floating or squirting toys. Letting your child choose a couple of special toys will make them much more excited to get in the tub.
Have Plenty of Time
Make sure that you always have plenty of time when taking a bath. This will help you to remain calm even if your child is dragging their feet. Also if they get in and start having fun, you don’t want to have to hurry them along. Try to plan bath time during a time when you have plenty of time to spare. Most parents find that evening baths work better than trying to get your child to bathe in the morning when everything is hectic.
Make Sure the Water is a Good Temperature
A comfortable bath will be a more enjoyable bath. Test the water and make sure that is not too hot or too cold. Make sure that you stay with your child during bath time and that you listen to them if they have any complaints about water temperature. Your child knows what temperature is comfortable for them.
Try a Sponge Bath
If your child continues to fight about baths, consider giving them a sponge bath every now and then. Simply use a basin of water and some soap to wash them without immersing them in the water. You might also consider asking them why they hate taking baths. It might be a simple problem with an easy fix.
Use Tearless Soap and Shampoo
Getting soap or shampoo in your eyes is never fun. Make sure that this isn’t an issue for your children by purchasing tearless shampoo and soap. Always be careful when washing your child’s hair or face.
Posted by TinyTotties on January 27 2011
Children need to be taught about money and financial responsibility from a young age. When should you start? What should you teach them? A lot of what you teach will be determined by your children and your philosophies about money. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.
Find Age Appropriate Teaching Methods
You need to think about your children and their ages before you start teaching them about money. For example your 12 year old will be able to understand things a lot differently than your 6 month old. Start teaching them young and have your teaching methods change and evolve as they grow up. You might be able to teach a young child how to count money or to start saving a little money in a piggy bank. Older children can learn more complex skills like budgeting, saving for a large purchase or opening bank accounts.
Be Open with Your Children
Children understand a lot more than parent’s give them credit for. Talk with your children openly about money so that they establish a realistic view of your family finances. For example if they want a new toy that is out of your price range you can explain that you can’t afford that and help them to understand what you can afford. You can talk about things like budgets, family financial goals and the ways that you like to save.
Let Them Make Money Decisions
Help your child learn to make decisions about money as they grow up. For example you could help them to choose birthday gifts for siblings or to decide on a loaf of bread at the store. Even major purchases like a new family car or a family vacation can involve the children. When you find ways to make them a part of the decision making process, they can learn to make wise decisions in a controlled and safe environment. This way they will be ready to control their own finances when they move out on their own.
Helping your children to learn about money should be something that you teach from a young age until they are ready to leave the nest. These tips will help you to create a plan for your family.
Posted by TinyTotties on January 24 2011
Many parents start looking forward to the day their child will be potty trained from the moment they change that first dirty diaper. Teaching your child to properly use the toilet is a big achievement and will provide your child with more independence and more freedom. Plus it will save you money on diapers and from having to change dirty diapers several times each day. While it is a big achievement, it can be a lot of work. Here are 5 tips to keep in mind to help make potty training a success with your child.
Make Sure They Are Ready
Every child is different and it is important to make sure that your child is ready before you start potty training them. Generally children are ready sometime between 18 months and 3 years old, although your child may be ready much sooner or later than this. Some children express interest in potty training which can be a great clue that they are ready. If your child is asking about using the potty, you might want to start. Once you have started, make sure that your child continues to express interest. If they don’t seem to want to participate, take a break from potty training for a few months and then try again. Don’t force them before they are ready or you might experience more problems down the road.
Choose Your Timing Carefully
Timing is critical when potty training. Make sure that you start your training during a calm period in the child’s life. For example starting a week or two before a big family vacation is not a good idea. Your child needs to have plenty of time to get used to using the potty before any major changes in schedule, activities or living arrangements. This will allow your child to focus on the important change at hand, learning to use the potty, rather than being distracted by everything else going on.
Accidents will happen, so plan on them. When you start potty training make sure that you have a change of underwear on hand whenever you go out. If your child does have an accident, be patient and don’t ever get upset with them. They will learn better in a positive and supportive environment.
Reward and Praise
Children seek the praise of their parents. During the potty training process you need to find rewards for your child when they successfully use the potty. These rewards don’t have to be anything huge. Some parents reward with a small treat or a sticker and others purchase items like musical training toilets. Since each child is different, find what works for yours and always praise them for a job well done.
Expect Small Progress- Not an Instant Transformation
Your child isn’t going to go from diapers to using the potty perfectly in one small step. Instead it will be a series of steps. You might find that they learn to use the potty at home very quickly but then have a hard time using public toilets or they might use the potty really well sometimes and forget about it at other times. Focus on taking small steps like learning to use the toilet at home, learning to pee in the toilet or learning to tell you before they go to the bathroom. If you don’t expect major changes your child will be better able to meet your goals.
Potty training will be a lot of work, but will be worth it in the end. Make sure your child is ready and prepare for a long road of patience, learning and mistakes. Good luck!
Posted by TinyTotties on January 20 2011
Every parent wants the best for their children. You want them to have plenty of friends and to know how to be behave in social situations. While this skill comes naturally to some children, others need help and training in learning to socialize. This process is called the socialization process. Here are 5 tips for parents that will help you to encourage and teach your children to meet new friends.
Find Out How They Are Doing
Knowing how your children are interacting with others will help you to know how much additional attention your child needs. They may be doing a great job on socializing on their own and need little outside help from you. Since children can behave differently around their parents it is a good idea to get an outside opinion. Talk with their preschool teachers or daycare providers to find out how well they are interacting with other children. This will provide valuable insight that you can use to create a plan for your child.
Set Up Opportunities for Social Interaction
A lot of our social skills are learned through practice. If you want your children to successfully communicate with others you need to provide opportunities. Consider setting up play dates or taking your child to a preschool. Even daycare can be a great place for your child to meet and interact with other children and make new friends.
Talk About Appropriate and Inappropriate Behaviors
Children need to be taught what is appropriate and what is not. When you see them practicing inappropriate behaviors in social groups, talk with them and explain the problem. Likewise you should praise them when they are behaving properly. Before a new social situation it may be appropriate to explain the behavior that you want to see. For example if you have invited some children over to play you can teach your child how to open the door and greet them and how to share toys well before the other children arrive. This sets your child up for success.
Expose Your Child to a Variety of Different People
The more people that your child meets the more they will learn. Teach them to be friendly to a variety of different personalities, ages and cultures. Simple interaction with a variety of people from a young age will help your child to learn how to tailor their behavior to different personalities. This will help them to meet more friends down the road.
Give Them Space
Children need to branch out and form their own social connections that aren’t based on their parents. Set up social situations and then step back and watch from a distance. Let your child practice their skills and only step in when necessary. If you provide the opportunities and teach them how to act they will be able to make their own friends.
Teaching your child to socialize should start from a very young age and should continue as they grow. This important skill will help them now and throughout their entire life.
Posted by TinyTotties on January 18 2011
Going back to work after having a baby can be really difficult for some mothers. They want to spend time with their little one and often feel torn between the demands of a job and their family. While working and taking care of a baby won’t be easy, it is possible. Here are a few tips to make the transition a little easier.
Get Up Earlier
Mornings tend to be hectic and it can be very difficult to get ready for work and get the baby to the sitter on time. If you start waking up an hour or two earlier you will more relaxed in the morning and will be able to spend a little more time with your baby. Leaving them won’t be as hard if you have gotten to feed and cuddle your baby before you have to head to work. Go to bed a little earlier so that you can have time in the morning to spend with baby.
Leave Work at Work
When you leave work, make sure that you leave work behind. Don’t bring projects home or think about work when you should be thinking about your baby. If you need to, stay at work a little longer so that you can devote your home time to baby. Learn to focus on work when you are there and to focus on home while you are at home. This will help you to avoid distraction and to enjoy your time in both locations a little more.
Check in During the Day
There is nothing wrong with calling and checking in with your baby during your lunch break. In fact you might enjoy having a child care service that offers a webcam where you can watch your baby when you have time. If you do have this service, make sure that you only watch your baby when on lunch or a break. You don’t want work to think that you aren’t giving them your best now that you have a baby.
Find a Great Babysitter
Leaving your child behind will be easier if you know that they are in good hands. Choosing a sitter or a day care service should be a carefully considered decision. Don’t choose the cheapest option and make sure that you check references.
Let the Little Things Slide
When you are trying to work full time and take care of a family as well, some things will have to slide. If your house isn’t immaculate, don’t worry about it. If you don’t have time to hit the gym for an hour a day, don’t feel bad. Determine what your priorities are and then stop worrying about the little things. It is more important to enjoy time with your baby than to have a perfectly clean house all of the time.
Working and being a parent is a challenge, but it is possible if you learn to say no and manage your time effectively.
Posted by TinyTotties on January 14 2011
When you have kids it can seem like the work and the parenting never stops. Many parents struggle to retain an identity that is anything other than “Mom” or “Dad.” While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it can be important to find a little time for you each day. This will leave you feeling happy and refreshed instead of dreading spending time with your little ones.
It Doesn’t Have to Be a Big Thing
Many parents think that finding time for themselves requires chiseling out an entire afternoon. In many cases 10 or 15 minutes of alone time can do wonders. When your child is down for a nap spend a few minutes enjoying a glass of lemonade or hot cocoa. When your child is happily playing read a magazine article. Learn to find you time in little moments rather than thinking that you need all day long.
Find Joy in Parenthood
Every parent has their ups and their downs but learning to adjust your attitude will really make a difference. Treasure the little moments with your child. While this won’t help you to live the life you did before children it will help you to appreciate what you have. Sometimes a change in attitude will really make a difference and will leave you feeling refreshed even if your daily activities remain the same.
Set Little Goals
Having children doesn’t mean that you have to give up all of your hobbies and dreams. You can still enjoy walking, crafting, reading or whatever else you love to do. You might just have to adjust your timing. When taking care of children it might be impossible to read 3 chapters of a new book in one day, but you might be able to squeeze in a page or two. Think about your passions and find ways to set little daily goals. If you are able to set and achieve small goals you will be much happier than if you try to fit in more than you can possibly achieve in a day. Think about your life and your kids and set goals that are easily achievable.
Share the Load with Others
No one says that you have to parent alone. Consider starting a playgroup or trading kids for the day with another parent. If you watch their kids one day they might be willing to watch yours another. This gives your children a fun filled day with friends and will give you some time to take care of yourself.
Having kids isn’t easy, but it is certainly worth it. You will enjoy the experience of parenting more if you learn your limits and make a little time for yourself each day. These tips will help.