Tag: kids

The Thing Is…Boys Are Full On! with Bree James

Being the only female in a house of boys, it’s a celebration of the XY chromosome most days. I have certainly learnt a lot about the male species since becoming a mother of boys, and there are a lot of things I wish I didn’t learn, but also many I am so pleased I have.

The thing is… little boys are fuuullllll on. I know girls can be too, but from what I have witnessed most girls can sit still whilst watching tv, at a dinner table and when a passenger in the car. I am sure some boys can too, but mine…cannot.

My boys have so much energy they could power a small town. From the time they wake up, until the time they go to bed, they are jumping, wrestling, throwing, play fighting, twitching, jiggling, and any other movement you can think of.

And no matter how much activity they have in a day, you feed them and off they go again.

You cannot take them to the shops without them turning it into a maze, battlefield, or racetrack. It doesn’t matter how much you warn them when you go into the shops that they have to behave, not run and to stay close – they do not. It takes all of a parent’s power to keep their cool whilst copping knowing or judgmental looks at your inability to keep your boys in line in public.

Boys also attempt really dumb things. Getting chills up and down your spine is a daily occurrence – with many of us surprised at how little time we spend in the Emergency Room.

Parents of boys have a special “I feel you” nod we give each other when passing by a chaotic scene.

Boys are really weird too, they love the topics of farts, poop, bottoms, and private parts. If you want to make your boys laugh, it’s really simple. Mention one of the above and you are seriously the funniest human being on the planet. My boys have also recently started naming their farts-why? Because they can.

And don’t get me started on the 3rd leg. From the time boys are born their hands are always on it. My dad used to say he was so poor when he was a kid his mum cut holes in his pockets so he had something to play with. It doesn’t matter if your son has every toy they could ever want, that thing is by far their favorite. As a new mum, I remember the first day of my precious baby being born. It’s a harsh reality that I wasn’t expecting nor knew what to do with and I was horrified. Yes- from the time they are born that happens! And don’t forget to always point it down in a nappy, learnt that the hard way many times…

Noise is another thing you have to live with. Boys are so loud. I know if I ever go away for work and come back it takes a good 24 hours to get used to the noise again.

They talk loud, play loud, fight loud, walk loud, go to the toilet loud, eat loud, everything is loud and it can be so draining.

I know the grunting, sleeping teenage boy stage is just around the corner. So, for now, I am embracing the chaos, gaining grey hairs and mild anxiety from their risk taking, and taking deep breaths knowing they have an amazing dad that I hope they turn out like one day. We’ve just got to get through the next ten years.

You can visit the Bree James website HERE. 

 

 

 

 

Party Crafts for Kids – 3D Cupcake Birthday Cards

3D Cupcake Birthday Cards

What You Need

Cardboard

Cotton balls

Cupcake baking liners

Craft glue

Scissors

Ruler

Tooth picks

Yellow paper

Method

Cut a rectangle piece of cardboard out to whatever size you want. Use the ruler to measure them out evenly before cutting.

Fold the cupcake liners in half, tucking in the edges to form a C shape. Glue the cotton balls onto the cardboard, then glue the cupcake liner over half or two thirds of the balls

Glue a toothpick onto the cardboard as the candle. Cut a flame out of the yellow paper and glue this above the toothpick.

To go a step further, cut a rectangle out of the yellow paper that fits into the middle of the cardboard. Glue the paper onto the other side of the cardboard and write a special message on it!

Check out our other party crafts for kids: 

Pom Pom Party Hats 

Rainbow Party Cups

Cheetah Pinata

 

 

The Thing Is…the Baby Days Are Over! with Bree James

It’s an interesting moment when you make the decision to not have any more children. I’m a mum of two boys nearing 9 and 11 years old. People still ask me if I am going to go back to try and have a girl. Now… my ovaries get excited when I see a gorgeous baby. But the rest of my body gets chills at the thought of going through parenthood from the beginning again. The Thing is, I do feel completely blessed and honored to be a mother. BUT I am pretty happy that the days of having a baby hanging off my boobs all hours of the day and the sleepless nights are over. Don’t get me started on the tantrums, constant nappy changing and not being able to know what they are crying about!

My eldest asked me the other day about periods. Being a mum that over educates and answers questions, I told him all about them. Told him that he will need to be a supportive boyfriend one day. Of course I mentioned how he has to be gentle with the girls at school who may be experiencing them. The cutest thing he said was, “Mummy it must be so sad though, getting a period knowing it could have been a baby”. The “Hell no” nearly came out of my mouth, as I have experienced 2,184 days of them. But, I stopped, and thought about it. I shared that yes, many ladies are sad if they are trying for a baby. However, many are pretty excited when they get their period as it means no babies.

It’s a big decision to have kids. I think it’s a pretty big decision for some of us to say that our uterus is closed for business.

I’ve still got most of our baby stuff “just in case we had an accident”. But now I am hitting 40 this year, my husband and I had to have the talk about no more babies. He decided that it’s time he gets the snip. I fully support this if he is happy to do it (even though the reality that this part of my life is over makes me a little sad). Now, my husband is as nervous about this procedure as I was about giving birth to our watermelon sized children. 

Sure, I understand that a man’s member is literally like having another human being in the house. Another human that has needs. And I know that men have a huge attachment to this area of their body way more than women do with their own bits. I acknowledge that this is a big surgery for a man to have psychologically. He is really worried about “King Richard” and “the twins” and I am trying to be sympathetic. But as anyone who has witnessed childbirth knows, a vjay jay goes through so much more during childbirth. Plus, these things can results in a lot more stitches!

My eldest said, ‘Daddy is getting de-sexed’. This made me laugh so hard that I nearly wet myself, but it’s certainly not helping calm his nerves. Now I am sure it will all be fine, and we will celebrate once it’s all over.I think it’s only fair that if we celebrated having a baby, we should celebrate not having any more too. We should also thank our bodies for their service.

As they say, the swim team may have been cut, but the coach will never retire.

I am sure like childbirth, he will forget all about this trauma to the family jewels in a few days. He will look at his two amazing children and thank his dad bod for its service to our family. When they are fighting over something stupid, or he sees a toddler being really naughty, or a parent struggling with their infant, he will realise getting the snip wasn’t so bad after all.

 

Learn more about Bree on her website. 

Read more of ‘The The Thing Is’ with Bree James here

 

 

Uniden Steps to the Top With Their Latest Digital Baby Monitor

We all know the joy and worry that comes with being a parent. The incredible responsibility to take care of this tiny human rests in your hands… no pressure. Even the most vigilant parent can’t be there all the time- there’s a little something called sleep and maintaining your own basic needs that you somehow have to squeeze into your day. We also know how hard it can be to let go a little and trust another person or product to help ease this pressure. But be kind to yourself, give yourself a break and remember you need to take care of yourself, in order to take care of your baby or toddler. With the right help and resources, you can still take care of your child with a watchful eye, maintaining the safety of your child and your own sanity.

This is where the Uniden BW 140R digital baby monitor comes into play.

It will literally be the eyes in the back of your head, capturing every moment, so you know how and where your child is at all times. 

You can’t spend every minute of the day checking in on your child. We all know how often babies can wake up from naps, sending us flying into the room to quickly help them fall back asleep. And, let’s not get started on Toddlers, who seem to be able to get up to all sorts of mischief in the blink of an eye! However, being able to check in is now easier than ever thanks to Uniden. 

The Uniden Baby Watch BW 140R is the latest of their digital baby monitor’s. It lets you see your child or baby both day and night through its high definition (1080P) camera, which comes with night vision. Downloading the Uniden App lets you control the camera remotely from anywhere in the world and gives you a 100-degree viewing angle.

Two-way audio (that’s right, a walkie-talkie function) is included and it can play lullabies too, so you don’t even need to walk into the room to be able to talk to and comfort your baby.

Here are some of the next level features that we love about this product and think you will too:

  • Room temperature display (with alerts)
  • Three lullabies you can choose from AND white noise
  • A night light
  • Motion detection
  • Can support micro SD cards up to 32GB
  • Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant
  • App enabled remote access
  • AND the cutest White Panda Silicon cover makes it a fashionable addition to any nursery or child’s room. It also includes a Magnetic Stand so that you can easily mount the camera almost anywhere

In short, the BW 140R makes your job as a parent easier and allows you to multitask effortlessly (we can all get behind that). It has so many features yet is so easy to set up and move from room to room. If you’re looking for a monitor that is really going to benefit both you and your little ones, Uniden has definitely got it. Happy parenting.

Get the Uniden BW 140R here

5 WAYS THAT HELPED MY CHILD WITH AUTISM SLEEP BETTER

5 WAYS THAT HELPED MY CHILD WITH AUTISM SLEEP BETTER

As I write this, my little Jason is tucked and sound asleep in bed, but that wasn’t the case three months ago. We have come a long way, but I guess that’s the struggle for every other parent with a child with autism.

As a parent, a significant battle is how you can help your kid to sleep better. Anything short of this would leave you feeling inadequate; like it did to me. I kept wondering, “Why does it have to be like this?” My little Jason was always exhausted, and I was overly stressed.

Why do autistic children experience sleep difficulties?

The first thing I did like every other worried parent was to research. I found out that about 40 to 80 percent of autistic kids have trouble sleeping. The problems include waking up frequently in the middle of the night, daytime sleepiness, erratic sleep patterns, and sleeping for short periods.

Here are the potential causes I discovered:

– Unable to perceive social cues – Most fundamentals of sleep hygiene are based upon the body’s natural sleep cycle. Observable changes such as reading bedtime stories, switching off the lights and going upstairs are subconscious signals that it’s time to sleep. However, autistic children have difficulties interpreting external signals.

– Irregular cardiac rhythms – The cardiac flow is our bodies’ natural sleep cycle. Kids with sensory processing challenges, such as those with autism, may not get sleepy when it’s night time.

– Physical discomfort – kids who suffer from constipation or reflux but are unable to express their medical needs may struggle to find sleep, especially if they don’t have a caregiver.

– Hypersensitive sensory system – A sensory alert system makes it possible for one to perceive changes in the surroundings effectively. Squeaky doors, tight leaks, airflow and other household stimuli may pose a challenge.

– Insufficient melatonin production – If the body is unable to make melatonin, which is a hormone that stimulates sleep, the child might have difficulty sleeping.

Here’s what I did to help Jason sleep better.

1.    I kept a sleep diary

Keeping a sleep diary enabled me to keep track of Jason’s sleeping patterns. I also identified the factors that may have inhibited his ability to sleep. I would show the diary to his pediatrician and doctor, and they advised me on the steps to take. That way, I had an easy time figuring out what changes to make to help my son to sleep for a more extended period than he was.

2.    I harnessed the benefits of weighted blankets

When I read all the scientific studies that support the use of weighted blankets, especially on autistic children, I knew it would benefit Jason, and I bought it right away. I liked the idea that I didn’t always have to lie with him because the blanket kept him warm. It also increased pressure and made Jason feel like I was lying next to him and holding him. 

3.    I made the bedroom comfortable

When I learned that autistic children like my Jason had sensory differences, I knew that the bedroom had to be comfortable enough for him to sleep. I blocked out the light using blackout blinds and dark curtains. I also bought headphones for my boy so that he could block out all noises. I removed labels from nightclothes and bedding. I also removed all toys from his room to get rid of distractions.

4.    I changed his diet and sought natural remedies

By keeping the food diary, I noted the foods that gave Jason stomach upset and consequently made it difficult for him to rest. I cut off these foodstuffs from his diet and introduced the ones that the dietician advised me to. I limited his caffeine drinks and stopped feeding him on sugary foods close to bedtime. I asked my doctor to prescribe some natural remedies that he thought would improve Jason’s sleep patterns, which he gladly did.

5.    I set up a routine

Before I put my child on a sleep routine, I used to find this cliché and didn’t think it would amount to much. It was not until my doctor advised me to try setting a schedule that I did. She informed me that if an autistic child doesn’t feel right, they won’t sleep. I ensured that the plan was predictable, reliable, and within my control.

I am happy that Jason can now sleep better. Since his sleeping patterns improved, I get enough rest, and I am rarely stressed. I hope other parents can find the kind of relief I found.  

Story Annabelle Short 

BENEFITS OF OWNING A PET FOR KIDS

BENEFITS OF OWNING A PET FOR KIDS

Pet ownership is a great experience and most kids love the idea of having a pet, often forgetting the harder aspects of looking after a living, breathing animal. And parents are sometimes correct in assuming that they will be the ones that end up doing the grunt work. But there are so many rewarding aspects for kids and parents to reap from owning a pet. Generally speaking though, the benefits of owning a pet definitely far outweigh any negatives.

Benefits of owning a pet come in many different forms, as can the negatives.

Some of the positive effects on mental health and development include:

1. Sharing a family pet helps strengthen bonds between family members.

2. Kids just starting to learn to read generally feel more comfortable reading to a pet. Those that do practice reading aloud to a pet have shown a 12% improvement rate over a 10-week period.

3. By setting up a schedule for the kids to follow, in relation to the care of your pet, you can teach them organisation. Once following a plan or schedule becomes habit, it wouldn’t be too much of a leap to include some homework or other activities into the equation.

4. By encouraging children to feed and care for their pet, it teaches them empathy and kindness and allows them to display improved impulse control, social skills and self-esteem.

5. The ownership and walking of a pet, specifically a dog, increases social interaction. It also helps to ease people out of social isolation and shyness.

6. Cuddling with a pet has shown to reduce stress, loneliness and anxiety.

Here are some positive effects on physical health and wellbeing with a focus on puppy and dog ownership.

7. Children whom have grown up with a pet since birth have less risk of developing asthma, autoimmune diseases and allergies.

8. Pets, dogs in particular, are said to help lower blood pressure.

9. Dog owners are 34% more likely to fit in 150 minutes of walking per week.

10. Dog owners are more physically active, as they are encouraged to go outside more to exercise and play with their pets.

11. Those that exercise with their pets regularly have a decreased risk of diabetes.

As with everything, there are always going to be disadvantages. The primary disadvantages of owning a pet include the responsibility, the cost, and the space needed. In the end it’s up to you to decide if the pros outweigh the cons, but one thing is for sure; a furry friend is sure to teach valuable life lessons and love you unconditionally!