Category: Parents

5 Ways to Improve Your Child’s Health

For any parent, your children are the most important part of your life. You no doubt want to protect them from harm and ensure they lead as healthy a lifestyle as possible.

Children are increasingly leading unhealthy lifestyles, consuming junk food, indulging in sedentary habits, and spending too much time on their smartphones. The effects of these behaviors are being seen in rising levels of obesity, illness, and mental health problems in young people. 

Our physical and mental health plays a huge part in almost all aspects of our lives, from eating to sleeping to how we entertain ourselves. And as a parent, it is up to you to ensure your child maintains healthy habits and behaviors. A young child might not have the best understanding of how their actions will affect their minds and bodies in the short and long term. 

So what can you do to help? Here are five excellent ways to improve your child’s health.

Set a good example

Your child looks up to you and is likely to see your behavior as something to emulate. If you smoke, drink, and spend your weekends scrolling through Instagram in front of the TV, your little one will not see this as bad behavior. It will be the norm. Make sure that none of your bad habits rub off on your children by taking extra special care to avoid them. The best solution would be to eradicate your bad habits entirely, by quitting cigarettes, reducing your alcohol intake, and deleting your social media apps. But at the very minimum, you should ensure you don’t indulge in any of these behaviors in front of your child. Set an example by exercising, eating healthily, and engaging in more wholesome activities like reading.

Cook healthy meals

What you put into your body plays a tremendous part in your overall health. If your child eats chicken nuggets and fries every single night, they are going to be unhealthy and have an increased likelihood of obesity and sickness. Cooking healthily can be both cheap and delicious, and is easy if you follow some of the many nutritious recipes you can find online. Many parents worry that their child won’t eat fruit and vegetables, but dietary preferences are generally learned rather than innate. If you raise your child to eat good food, they will grow up enjoying it and will adopt this behavior into adulthood. If you struggle to get your kids eating well, try to involve them in the cooking process to make eating healthily more exciting and interactive.

Limit their device use

Children these days spend an excessive amount of time staring at their phones and playing video games. This can have enormous effects on their physical and mental health, leading to issues such as obesity, impaired academic performance, postural problems, anxiety, and depression. One of the most effective steps you can take to improve your child’s health is to limit the amount of time they spend on their phones. Set dedicated times such as meals and before bed, when phones are not allowed, and encourage them to spend their free time with more productive hobbies like reading and playing board games. When they go off to school, there’s little you can do to stop them from feeding their screen addiction, but there are numerous monitoring apps you can install on their phones that will tell you what they’re getting up to. Read more on Family Orbit’s official blog.

Encourage physical activity

Every child should have a physical hobby, whether it’s football, dance, gymnastics or running. It doesn’t matter whether your child is a star on the soccer pitch or lacks coordination; there will be numerous forms of exercise you can do together as a family. Try out a Saturday morning parkrun, go for long weekend walks. or find a local sports club for them to join. Just a few hours of exercise a week is enough to build good habits and make them stronger, fitter, and healthier.

Set a sleep routine

Sleep is one of the most underrated aspects of good health, and it is essential for everything from academic performance to physical health to mental wellness. If your child doesn’t get enough sleep, they might do badly in school and be more susceptible to illness, stress, and obesity. Set a sleep routine to ensure they go to bed and wake up at a similar time every day. This way, you know they are getting their eight hours a night and will feel much more rested and healthy in the morning. 

5 Rules for Helping Your Child Deal With Divorce

Every year, thousands of marriages end in divorce, and while the experience is painful for partners, the emotional pain can also be incredibly damaging to those who don’t have a say in this life-changing decision – the children.

It is the role of the parents, both of them, to try to minimize the damage that’s often a part of the process, and help their children cope with divorce more effectively. Below, a couple of steps you can take to help your children through this difficult period in life.

Let your child know they’re loved

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From anxiety and depression to frustration and anger, there are a lot of negative feelings that surround the process of separation and divorce. Different kids will interpret them in different ways depending on their age and personality. Some may learn how to cope better with stress and become more tolerant individuals later on. Others, however, may start to blame themselves for their parents’ divorce, which can be detrimental to their self-esteem.

Regardless of your child’s initial reaction to the news, you need to make it clear to them that your decision to go separate ways does not change the way you feel about them. Let them know they’re loved, and provide reassurance if the other parent doesn’t show the same level of commitment.

Keep the lines of communication open

As a parent, you want to keep the lines of communication open during this difficult period and encourage your kids to talk. Let your children know that they can rely on you whenever they feel like talking to you, feel sad or confused, or simply need to ask you something.

They will be disappointed, angry, and sad, and they will probably wish for their parents to reunite. Your job is to allow your children to express their feelings, whatever they may be. Giving them the option to voice their emotions will help ease their frustration and help them feel empowered. Whatever you do, don’t downplay their emotions – it shows that they shouldn’t feel the way they do. Instead, let them know that their feelings matter. It’ll help teach your children to confront any negative feelings they have instead of avoiding them, which will only help them later in life.

Seek help to deal with your own painful feelings more easily

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Separation and divorce are just as stressful for the parents, and things such as custody, property, and financial problems only make the already overwhelming process even more challenging and painful. Finding effective ways to cope with divorce stress is essential during these difficult times, and keeping yourself healthy, both physically and emotionally, is important now more than ever.

If you know someone who went through this, consider talking to them. It can help you adjust to the situation and provide you with some valuable insights. You can also look for support groups, seek help from friends and family, and visit a therapist or a counselor. By dealing with your own painful feelings in a healthy way, you’ll set an example for your kids, and they’ll follow suit and adjust to this big change in the same way.

Make the transition as peaceful as possible

Despite the efforts to maintain their marriage, more couples are choosing to go their separate ways, and the divorce rates around the world are increasing. While the number of divorces involving children has dropped significantly over the years in places such as Australia (from 67.6% in 1975 to 47.1% in 2017), there are still thousands of marriages that end each year.

When ending a marriage seems like the only option, finding a trustworthy legal professional such as a reputable family lawyer in Brisbane can aid couples in navigating divorce-related matters and help them achieve a fair outcome. With a reliable professional by your side, you can deal with challenges more calmly and effectively while also being able to focus on the bigger picture and look to the future, thus making the transition as peaceful as possible.

Do your best to maintain your daily routines

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Divorce is a life-changing event and it can really make the children feel like their life has turned around 180 degrees. This is why remaining consistent with routines is so essential during this difficult period.

Having a routine to follow provides a sense of security, familiarity, and comfort – things that children desperately need when dealing with such a major life change. Therefore, do your best to maintain your daily routines – stick to your schedules, minimize abrupt changes, and keep things predictable. Doing so will reduce the risk of negative behavioral changes and help your kids overcome this particularly sensitive period.

Wrapping up

Getting divorced is a decision that inevitably creates a lot of stress and tension, especially when it comes to ending a marriage with children. It is during these times that children need their parents’ love, support, and understanding the most. If you follow these five rules, you can help your kids adjust to the new situation, overcome negative emotions, and look forward to the future after the divorce.

 

About the Author

Claire Adams is a personal and professional development expert who believes that a positive attitude is one of the keys to success. She enjoys life to the fullest in the healthiest way possible and loves to share her insights into parenting, education, and entrepreneurship. She is a regular author for Ripped.me and you can find her on Facebook and Twitter.

Key Tips To Move With Kids

Moving can be a difficult challenge for anyone, add kids to the mix, and you’ve got a recipe for an even bigger challenge. Thankfully, there are many great ways that you can incorporate kids into the move without too much difficulty. These tips are sure to help you, regardless of the age of your kids. We’ll start with specific age brackets and go from there for our tips. Remember, the sooner you can begin packing, the easier your move is going to be.

Ages 2 And Under

This is perhaps the toughest yet easiest age bracket to deal with when moving long distance. Kids ages 2 and under aren’t quite aware of what is going on, and your biggest challenge will be keeping them occupied long enough to get a few boxes packed each day. Start by setting aside the central area of your house. This area should be in or near the main room you’re going to be working in for any given day.

Child gates, play yard areas, or even a small stack of boxes that won’t injure your child are ideal ways to section off an area. Place a few rarely used toys in the room to entertain the kids. Kids have a few favorite things at this age; try to find those few toys and incorporate them into your area, overcoming the obstacles of long distance moving with kids.

Keep a running dialog going with the kids while you’re packing, and usually, you’ll be able to pack a small box or two at a time or maybe one large-sized box.

Ages 3 To 7

This is a fun age, and you can get help from this age bracket. Talk to the kids about what is going on, “We’re moving to a new house soon, and we need to pack up your toys so you can take them with you,” “Would you like to help me pack this box?”.

These are ideal ways to incorporate kids into the move and get them to help you get things packed up. Another fun idea is to give each child a crayon of a different color and allow them to decorate their specific boxes. Younger children can draw pictures on their boxes, while older children can write their names on their boxes.

Kids love to help, and it will keep them busy to have them pack a few of their favorite things and identify which boxes are theirs. Kids will usually tire of this after a time and either take a nap, watch a program on television, or need to be redirected.

Ages 8 To 12

This age bracket is very similar to the ages 3 to 7 age bracket; however, you can begin to give them other household items to pack. Consider a small bookshelf or other items that are relatively easy to pack. Set a goal of so many boxes for each child or allow to close in age children to have a contest to see who can pack the most in a set amount of time.

The more you involve your kids in the move, the more excited they will be about leaving their old home and friends. Be creative and consider the kids’ ages when you’re coming up with ways that they can help you in the move. Throw a going-away party and allow them to invite a few friends. Take plenty of pictures.

Ages 13 And Up

This age bracket is perhaps the most helpful of all. At this age, you can assign them specific areas of your home to help pack up. Start with their room and go from there. Not all kids in this age bracket will want to move, and you may have to deal with some teenaged angst.

Be creative and remember you were once that age and try to deal with each specific issue as it comes. Focus on fun and make the move an adventure, and you’re far more likely to get more cooperation. You can also sometimes put an older child in this age bracket in charge of a younger age bracket or divide them into teams and team them up with a younger child for a “contest” to see who can do the most in a specific room. When teens feel important, you’re going to get a lot more cooperation from them.

More Key Tips To Move With Kids

A going-away party allows kids to feel like they have some closure on the move. You should also consider taking them to tour the new home and choose their rooms if it’s possible.

Find fun things for them to do in the new area so that they won’t feel so bored. Maybe they’re closer to a park or another area where they could meet new friends. Pay a few visits to these areas so that they feel connected and look forward to the move.

Even if you’re upset by the move, try not to show it to the kids. You want their cooperation, not their angst. The more you can make the move look like a fun adventure, the more cooperation you’re going to get from the kids.

These tips will help you to move with your kids and enjoy your move without a lot of difficulties. Even the most challenging child can be coerced into helping you if you apply a few of these tips.

Celebrating Halloween with Indoor Trick-or-Treating

This year Halloween may look really different for some as many may choose not to go out trick-or-treating. However, this does not mean you can’t celebrate Halloween at all this year.

2020 has been a year of changing traditions to make it as normal as possible for our little ones. I remember changing around Easter to make sure the magic of the Easter bunny was still much alive in our home, even if our family couldn’t be together to celebrate. Now with Halloween just around the corner, I will be bringing the fun of trick-or-treating with a little twist to my daughter.

Let me introduce you to our idea, Trick-or-Treat Hotel.

Halloween Baking

Before we undertake our spooky adventure, we will be warming up with some Halloween baking. Halloween is always much more fun when baking is involved and we can have these yummy treats once we are done.

Remember to just have fun and no need for masterpieces especially since it will all be eaten anyways. 😉

Halloween Crafts

Once your baking is complete, you can move on to some crafts as this way your child is busy creating art while you set up your trick-or-treat hotel.

We got some Halloween crafts from our local dollar store which does not need any adult supervision. A couple of the crafts that we will be doing are Halloween ornaments and a Halloween photo by using Halloween stickers to create our scene.

Trick-or-Treat Hotel

This idea came to me during our play of hotel in our home. So I have incorporated that idea with trick-or-treating. We will be transforming our bedroom floor into a hotel. We have four doors on this level and all these doors will be closed.

Each door will have a Halloween inspired sign and you can create these yourselves with construction paper and a string. You can place these on all the doors. We used words that Nikki can read on her own, this way she is practicing her reading skills along the trick-or-treat road.

As Nikki approaches each door, she knocks and says, “Trick or Treat.” Then we open the door and inside she will find a note that will either say, “Treat” or “Trick.”

Treat Note

If the door reveals a “Treat” note, then you will need to find the treat in the room. Special bonus is that the notes will have a number on it (math equation) and that is how many treats need to be located in the room. Great way to have your child practice with their math skills too. 😉

Trick Note

Halloween needs to have some tricks too as we can’t always have treats. These notes will have instructions on what trick to do. For example, do 10 jumping skeleton jacks. Keep it fun, light and a great workout. Makes up for not walking the distance to get treats in your neighbourhood.

Halloween Family Movie Night

Once all doors have been explored, you can have a relaxing night with a family Halloween movie night. Always have your child pick the movie to make sure it is one that does not scare them. There are many great options available on Disney Plus. That is our go to for family friendly movies.

That is our Halloween plan this year and one that I know won’t scare me by the end of the night. I am a bit of a scary cat so the idea of an indoor trick-or-treat is ideal for me. Either way, I know this will be a memorable Halloween for my daughter and we will make the best of it.

We would love to hear what you are doing this year in the comment section below. Remember whatever you decide, stay safe and have a Happy Halloween!

-Momma Braga

 

7 Ways to Foster Your Child’s Curiosity in Learning

Parents explore new ways to encourage their child’s curiosity. After all, a healthy curiosity drives children to want to learn more about specific subjects. Schools that improve student engagement offer better programs that keep children engaged and learning something new every day. Learning 7 ways to foster your child’s curiosity in learning helps children learn more and helps parents find the best schools for their kids.

  1. Find the Cure for Boredom

Engaging children effectively in the classroom prevents the children from becoming bored. This is the key to improving student engagement and helping the children achieve higher grades in each course. Planning activities that are interesting and entertaining keeps the children’s attention, and it helps the children absorb more information. Teachers that use these strategies encourage children to learn more about staying engaged in class. Parents can learn more about improving student engagement by learning how to get the best international school experience with the Perse School Singapore for their children.

  1. Let Them Do Classwork at Home

Classroom time is for discussions and not classwork. Allowing the students to complete assignments at home frees up class time for discussions. If the teachers allow the students to speak and discuss the subject children learn more.

  1. Promote Open Discussions in the Classroom

Teaching children through discussions keeps the classroom available for further learning. If the teacher enables the students to ask questions and talk about the subjects. The children learn how to formulate questions that help them and their classmates learn more about the topic.

  1. Give the Kids a Creative License

Allowing children to become creative gives them a chance to express themselves through art or music. Schools that provide arts and music courses encourage the child’s curiosity in learning by appealing to their imagination. A healthy imagination helps the children learn to express their feelings and thoughts. As an adult, these skills could help them be more assertive and get more out of their career. It shows the children how to get ahead in business and how to process their thoughts and feelings in a healthy way.

  1. Promote Critical Thinking

Critical thinking skills are vital for everyone. Promoting critical thinking and questioning the teachers about the topics, children learn how to apply these skills in life as they grow up. Instead of accepting the information they are given, they learn how to question thoughts and theories and arrive at their own conclusions. It is necessary to understand how to think critically when making decisions as an adult.

  1. Let Children Complete Projects Together

Completing projects together shows the children how to work together as a team. In life, they will work together in teams through employers when completing projects and building products. Understanding how to work together gives the children invaluable life skills.

  1. Present More Challenging Activities

Children who aren’t challenged will become bored and withdraw from their schoolwork. Children with higher-than-average IQs crave challenging work. Teachers must present work and projects that challenge the mind and help the children advance. The challenges help children develop strong problem-solving skills they will need for work and in life.

Parents review educational programs to determine what their children will get from the programs. Programs that are designed to promote a healthy curiosity for learning deliver curriculums that prepare children for college and life. Reviewing how these programs work shows parents if the schools are the best choice for their children.

 

Pro-Development Play That Every Child Should Experience

While play for play’s sake is undoubtedly important, we also want to make sure that our children are getting the kind of development that helps foster them and makes them more likely to grow up happy, competent, and successful. As such, you might be wondering which toys are most likely to help them as they grow up. The answer isn’t as simple as picking out one single best toy, however. Here, we’re going to look at a range of options, each of which might be able to help your child develop in the direction that you’re aiming.

Link – Pixabay License

 

Teething and grasping toys

If your child is teething, then offering them some ways to help them soothe their pain is going to offer both you and them a little respite. However, rather than simply getting a teether alone, or something solely for teething like a pacifier, you can get something that engages their teeth and their hands at the same time. Teething and grasping toys have been becoming a lot more popular over the past few years. So long as they’re lightweight enough, they’re highly versatile and can help children develop some fine motor skills. Many of them are also multicolored, meaning that they can also help with colour recognition. That way, you can offer your baby some peace for their sore mouth while also getting their brain working.

Books that sing or speak to them

While reading to your own child and singing to them is vitally important when they’re young infants, you should also consider giving them toys that make noises and speak to them. Things like interactive books with nursery rhymes or recordings of lullabies can help get them used to communication at a very young age. The more you engage a child’s social side at their youngest, the better they will be able to grow their communication skills over time, as well. Interactive story and singing books combine this need by giving them things to reach for and touch, which helps develop motor skills such as their spatial awareness.

Play water mats

Water is a very entertaining plaything for young children, indeed. For one, sensory play is greatly important to their development, as we’re going to take a closer look at later. However, for young children, one of the big benefits of an age-appropriate water mat is that it encourages the extremely important activity of tummy time. Tummy time helps physically develop your child so that they can start to sit up, walk, and crawl. Furthermore, tummy time improves their ability to move around using their own arms, motor development skills that will continue to be more crucial as they get older. A good water mat combines tummy time with sensory play while offering your child a safe environment to play with water.

Pic – Pixabay License

Kinetic sand

One of the most important parts of development at an early age is getting a good idea of your own senses. The better we develop these senses as youngsters, the more benefits it can have for us in later life. How we interact with different materials and objects with different properties as children helps us get a better idea of how different forces work on those objects. For instance, playing with kinetic sand can help us build nerve connections in the brain when we are younger and can encourage scientific thinking and problem-solving. One of the best ways to understand how the world works is to get hands-on with it, after all.

Board games

While it’s important to choose the age-appropriate examples for your children, and some children might not be old enough to have the attention span to sit down for them, board games are generally great for childhood development. They are one of the kids toys that helps teach them about structure and rules in the greatest depth. This can be something as simple as snakes and ladders for children who are just getting into school, or chess as they’re getting into their adolescent years. More complicated board games then go on to help teach them about problem-solving and creative thinking, which can help them excel in the school and beyond. They’re also a great way to teach healthy competition in a stress-free environment so that they’re better able to deal with it elsewhere.

Creative play

Whether it’s things like markers, crayons, non-toxic paints or otherwise, let’s not underestimate just how important it is that you encourage your child to be creative. From as young as one year old, they are going to love getting hands-on and seeing all the things they can draw, paint, and even build. Creative play has a range of both intellectual and physical benefits. Learning to draw, for instance, helps to develop mathematic abilities in children at a very young age by helping them see, learn, and create shapes, as well as seeing how sizes and sorting works. The motor skills that get built up through drawing can be incredibly important for their ongoing physical development, as well. Creating with a range of materials is best.

Pic – Pixabay License

Playing pretend

It might seem like playing pretend is nothing more than just a fun pastime, but the truth is that it has a great impact on a child’s ability to use their imagination to come up with creative ideas. Furthermore, playing with dolls and teddies also helps them develop their social skills. By interacting in different scenarios and relationships, it gets them thinking about how people act with one another, allowing them to better intuit social situations as time goes on. This can then help them better co-operate and compromise with their friends as they get into school. They will better understand social cues, different tones, and even improve their language development by talking to their own toys.

Building blocks

From toddlers to teenagers, there are different kinds of building blocks that incentivize learning more effectively than the vast majority of toys out there. Early age building blocks improve motor skills such as hand-eye coordination, ensuring that children learn how to reach out, place, and balance blocks so that they do not tip over. This exercise also stimulates their creative learning, getting them to think about and imagine how block placement will affect the overall structure. Of course, as they get older and the blocks can get more complex and create increasingly diverse and complicated objects, they get to thinking about long-term planning and improve their overall creative thinking. Playing with building blocks alongside your child also helps teach them how to share and how to take turns in play.

Balls of all size

Physical development is just as important a part of play as the mental side is. The sooner that you get your child involved in physical activity, the better. This applies to more than just fine motor skills like hand-eye coordination, as well. Getting up, running around, jumping, and the like are all going to help them physically develop so that it becomes easier to incorporate fitness into their lives as they get older. There is all manner of toys that can help with this, such as ride-on toys, tunnels, slides, and the like. However, one that combines the physical activity with the fine motor skills, both of which your child needs, are balls. No matter the size, so long as they are age-appropriate, balls can be some of the most beneficial toys for your child to play with.

Pic – Pixabay License

Early age computers

There is a lot of debate that goes on about just how much contact we should be letting our children have with technology and at what age they should be having that contact. There’s a good reason for this debate as well, as there’s increasing concern that technological addiction and the sedentary lifestyle it can involve is bad for the health of your child in a wide variety of ways. However, there is no denying that technology will play an increasingly large role in daily life and the working world as time goes on. Early learning computers can help children start getting used to this technology so that they take to it much more easily as they get older.

Other children

It’s not all about the toys. It’s important that you find the opportunity to have your child play with others. Many of the skills mentioned above, such as the ability to communicate, to read social cues, and to share while playing, aren’t going to be fully developed unless they’re tested out there in the field. Solo play and playing with family is important, but playing with new friends and other children will help your child get used to other relationships, as well. It’s recommended that you get them playing with other children before they get to school so that they can integrate and socialize more easily.

Of course, play and toys aren’t the only ways to foster the development of your child. Providing a safe and positive home that engages and encourages them is just as essential, but the examples above can at least help.

7 Signs Your Child is Athletically Gifted

If all the news herald today about athletes enjoying multi-million-dollar yearly contracts has done anything, it’s made parents acutely aware of any athletic prowess of their children. Whether a son or daughter is in high school or diapers, parents’ schedules are full chock of practices and sports training classes.

Many parents ponder their children’s success when it comes to raising athletic children. Is it best to raise a child in one sport or multiple sports? At what age should we start them? How do we find an athletic program? What follows are seven signs you better start looking into athletic shoes.

Is Your Child a Leader?

If your child demonstrates the ability to lead early in their life, you probably have a future athlete on your hands. These characteristics will often show, but you must watch for them. If they struggle between which toys to play with, you could have a leader.

Image Credit: Pexels

Do You Live in a Warm Climate?

According to a recent story in the Journal of Sports Medicine, the high number of professional athletes who come from California, Florida, and Texas indicates the benefits of warm weather on potential athletic development. By contrast, children who live in colder climates are often unable to practice their sports, putting their development on hold.

Tall Parents

Most athletes, especially at the professional level, are well over six feet tall, whereas the average American male is five foot nine inches. Want to know your child’s potential height? Just add both parents’ heights, divide the result by two, and then add 2.5 inches for boys and subtract 2.5 inches for girls.

Eye/Hand Coordination

Coordination is an essential skill for an athlete. Unfortunately, children are born with no coordination. It’s not until they are about six months old that they begin to understand the correlation between seeing and touching. Their ability to watch an object as it moves and transfer an object from one hand to another is an early indicator of coordination.

Image Credit: Pexels

Fearlessness

There is a point at which fearlessness becomes stupidity, but it’s also true that athletes have a degree of fearlessness that others don’t. For example, that basketball player who attempts the difficult lay-up or the gymnast who isn’t afraid to try the seemingly impossible maneuver is a fearless athlete. Fearless children are often climbers, talkers, and much more that prove they aren’t afraid of failure.

Resilience

Does your child fall and never fail to get back up and try it again? Or, does your child try to reach something that’s too far away, only to try again? These things and more indicate early resilience in a child.

Image Credit: Pixabay

Quick Learner

Does your child pick things up quickly? Do they learn things fast? Being a quick learner is an excellent attribute for any athlete. Learning things like proper form is essential to athletic success, such as the basketball player who watches the form of a professional and attempts to copy it.

There are many more critical indicators of a child’s potential for success in athletics. These include their body type, competitive nature, and much more. In many cases, it’s difficult to determine which is a more important characteristic than another. And yes, there are those athletes who defy all the norms but become standouts against all expectations. It all comes down to the attitude of the child.

Normal Things That No One Tells You To Expect With A Newborn

Having a baby is one of life’s best parts, it’s a truly beautiful experience, that is unique to each person. With advice from others, books, professional advice and information readily available online, it’s no wonder that parents are able to get well and truly prepared for the arrival of their new addition. But are they really prepared for absolutely everything? 

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

 

Whether it’s unexpected things at the birth, countless sleepless nights because of baby day/night confusion, or more frequent feeding than expected, it’s all normal and perfect fine to feel a little lost. Usually, you will feel as though no one can help, and you’re doing wrong but that not the case. 

There are some worrying yet normal things that come with having a newborn, all of which are completely normal. Whether you’re a new parent or even a tenth-time parent some of the most normal things can sometimes leave you scared and concern, however, you have got this!

Have a look below at some of the completely normal yet scary things about newborns that people just don’t tell you about: 

Constant Sneezing 

For a newborn, the world is an entirely new place to be. Therefore, you need to be aware that their little nose is going to be a little extra sensitive to their environment. It may seem as though your newborn is sneezing all the time, but it’s a completely normal way for them to react to their new living environment. Sneezing helps then to get rid of any tiny foreign particles that may have made their way up into their nose. 

In their first few days, you may notice they are sneezing more, this is because there is extra mucus or amniotic fluid that is still sitting in their nostrils, this is completely normal. If you see any signs of temperature or wheezing alongside the sneezing, then give your health visitor a call as they may need to be seen.  

Jerky Or Sudden Movements

If this is your first child, then you may be a little bit supposed by the way that a baby moves. It’s likely that your little one will have rather jerky movements. Flailing limbs, and jumps a lot, and on top of that, it’s happening randomly. Relax, this is entirely normal. As they grow, they go through a number of developmental changes, one of which is their reflexes. After about three months of age, it will start to settle down. Heard of swaddling? This is one of the most common reasons babies are swaddled. 

Cradle Cap

This is something that is commonly seen on newborns and even some toddlers. It usually goes away very quickly, in fact, the first few months and it’ll be gone. Doing things like rubbing baby oil on to the areas it is every other day can help. Applying some baby oil using a fine baby comb will also help it to lift away. If it doesn’t go you may need to speak to your health care professional, but only if it is irritated or infected. It can be treated at home otherwise and is nothing to concerned about

Massive Poo Explosions

OK, so this is one that you may have heard of. People can’t help but share this story when you are expecting a new baby. However, what most new parents don’t realize is that they are much bigger and messier than you can imagine. Many new parents come across this with their new baby, all to different levels of the explosion, but it’s just something that you are never going to avoid. A newborn is well-known for having a runny and explosive poo, and it just seems to be a right of passage that every new parent must face. Don’t worry though, this is one of the most normal things you will experience with a new baby

Different Shaped Head

You and your baby work very well together to bring them into the world safely through the birth canal, so you shouldn’t be too worried about their strangely shaped head afterwards. Both you and your baby go through a tremendous amount of changes through childbirth and one of them is that their head shapes changes. It flattens slightly because it is malleable and soft, however, this is normal. In fact, it’s needed so that delivery can take place. It won’t be long before it starts to go back into a more normal shape. You should still be mindful that a baby can get a flat head is they are on their back too often, so try to lay them on the front and sides too. 

A Surprising Amount Of Hair 

If your little one is hairier than you expected don’t worry. As well as having hair on their head, a baby is born with more hair on their body than most parents expect. You will notice it on their back, shoulders, and even their feet. This is known as lanugo, it’s the first type of body hair made. Lanugo plays a crucial role in regulating a babies temperature in the womb. It’s certainly nothing to stress about, it will soon come away, and you won’t even notice it happening. Babies will lose most of the hair they are born with, including the hair on their head. Don’t panic though it luckily starts to grow back. Some quicker than others, but it does return. 

Spotty Babies 

This is most commonly known as ‘baby acne’. If your newborn has spots on their face, don’t get too worried about it. It just a reaction to your annoying hormones, and it will soon clear up on its own. You may also notice that they have little white spots Milk Spots’ or ‘Milia’ that aren’t related to the acne. They are just little bumps that are linked to their consumption of milk, they’re more common in bottle-fed babies but they will also disappear within a few weeks. 

The Scary Soft Spot 

Any new parent will be warned about the soft spot by someone at some point. It’s just a small area on the top of a babies skull that stays soft for months after the birth. Its purpose is there so their head can change shape for birth and the birth canal. You have to be careful of this area, but try not to stress about it, instead just be mindful and keep an eye on it. You will notice that you can see it moving, this is because their brain pulses inside their head, it’s a little bit tummy turning, but it is normal. If you have any concerns regarding the soft spot though, don’t hesitate to contact your healthcare professional. 

Hiccups That Just Won’t Go

Hiccups may seem troublesome, however, they are extremely common for newborns. It will seem like they have them at every feed, to begin with, and yes it can seem scary, but it is completely normal. Your newborn is learning to breathe in their new environment, their ability to breathe and swallow hasn’t quite synchronized. As soon as they master this, the hiccups will start to appear less and less. 

Although for any parent, some of these can seem scary, they are all completely normal. There is always going to be something new to learn, and you will also pick up your own methods as you get to know your little one. Is there anything that you have experiences that were scary but normal with your newborn? Should they be on this list? Please share some of them in the comments section. 

A Different Kind: 21 Gift Ideas to Surprise an Introvert With

Do you have an introvert in your life that you need to buy a gift for? Why not get them something that will surprise them but will also celebrate their need to stay to themselves?

Below are 21 gift ideas designed specifically for introverts. And, since there are no introvert stores out there, at least not yet, someone interested in buying any of these will need to get more information about them via Google.

1. Mugs

If an introvert is a coffee lover, mugs to hold their cup of joe are numerous. Mugs designed especially for introverts span the range of “Sorry I’m late. I didn’t want to be here,” to “I was social distancing before it was cool,” and everything in between. Best of all, they can be found almost everywhere on the Internet.

2. Reading Lamps

Introverted readers probably outnumber introverted coffee drinkers by a large margin, which is perhaps why there are so many accessories for those who love their books. That’s probably why there are more than just a few beautiful lighting types available.

3. T-shirts and Sweatshirts

If you’re going to be an introvert, why not tell the world about it with an appropriately inscribed t-shirt or sweatshirt? Again, these are numerous, with sayings that run the gamut of “Shhhh. I’m introverting,” to “Introverts Unite! Separately, In Your Own Homes,” and more pointedly, “I’d Love to Stay and Chat, but I’m Lying.”

4. Door Mats

Anyone who happens to be an introvert and who would instead be left alone would appreciate a doormat that effectively sends the message. That’s the purpose of doormats that say things like “Go Away” and other warm messages. And for the introvert whose interruptions don’t stop at the front door, there are plenty of signs that give the wise a warning such as “Do Not Disturb, I’m Disturbed Enough.”

5. Books and Coloring Books

Another item that would come under the category of reading is books and coloring books. Fortunately, if you’re an introvert, you can either read about your predisposition or make colorful noise about it. Some books extol the virtues of staying by yourself and what can be done when someone is doing that or by defining the ways people can reach out to you, such as texting.

6. Throws and Blankets

What introvert could resist a nice, soft throw or blanket to cuddle up with on the bed or sofa once a book and cup of coffee or other beverage has been selected for a quiet evening at home? There are countless types of these available.

7. Coffees and Teas

Any introvert who loves their coffees and teas will have something more to celebrate when they find out that subscriptions will bring their favorite brews right to their door.

8. Alcohol

Even if the introvert in someone’s life is up to their prophetic rear-end in quarantine, they can still enjoy a little nip when it’s needed by joining one of several alcohol clubs available. For only the price of a subscription, an introvert has their choice of beer, booze, or drinkware. There are even complete mixology kits for introverts who need a start.

9. Cookware

The pandemic quarantine might have brought people back to the kitchen but introverts will keep them there. Fortunately, there are plenty of tools that will help them make the best of their time. From crockpots to utensils, there is plenty to choose from.

10. Pampering Accessories

Whether an introvert wants to give themselves a back rub or a bath, there are plenty of tools to provide what they want. Not only that, but they can pamper themselves in style in whichever room of the house they want to do it in.

11. Comfy Clothes and Pajamas

Give an introvert something comfortable to wear and the chances are good they might even invite someone over to enjoy the gift with. Well, maybe not, but they will undoubtedly enjoy the gesture while snuggled up on the couch or in bed.

12. Headphones and Ear Buds

What would be better to tell the world to go away than headphones and earbuds that cancel out everything except what the high living introvert happens to be listening to?

13. Aromatherapy Sets

Perfumes and colognes are a thing of the past, but everyone loves the entire home to smell good. What better way is there to make that happen than with an aromatherapy set? An essential oil diffuser works along the same lines except there’s nothing to plug in. Just add an essential oil to a diffuser and it does all the work.

14. Journals

Since introverts cherish their time alone, why not give them something to do while they are at it? A journal accompanied by a nice pen will do the trick.

 15. Nap Time

Even if the introvert in someone’s life is also an insomniac, both bases are covered with plenty of sleep accessories like a sleep mask printed with “Wild Horses Couldn’t Get Me Out of Bed” or other clever sayings.

16. Pillows

If someone has to announce they are an introvert, the chances are good it isn’t working, but for those who need help, there are plenty of pillows with things like “I Party Like an Introvert…Which is to Say I Don’t.” That should get the message across.

17. Pins and Dangles

Introverts often like to be low-key about how they tell others, so pins are often left to do the work. Those that say things like “Happy Alone” or simply “Introvert” can be found on the Internet.

18. Games and Puzzles for One

Introverts have plenty of time on their hands to be, well, themselves, so why not give them something they can enjoy doing while they are at it like games. There are numerous games available on the Internet.

19. Escape Chairs

Furniture isn’t typically what most people think about when it comes to gifts for introverts, but makers have been business creating chairs for lots of solitary people.

Some are designed to muffle sound down to nothing as well as those that make an introvert hard to see. There are even total isolation cubbies.

20. Let Introverts Get Physical

Whether an introvert is into yoga or weightlifting, there is plenty of equipment out there for those who like to enjoy it alone. From sci-fi themed kettlebells to yoga mats, and everything in between, gifts are available in stores and on the Internet.

21. Hosty Clubs

Think gift subscriptions to Airbnb. You get the idea.

What more can be said than there is a lot available out there for introverts or introvert wannabes.

Getting Your Family Involved with Being Better Members of Your Community

To improve our local communities and where we live, we have to be part of the change. We can all do things that will help to improve or maintain good health and wellbeing of the area around us. You may think that what you do and your family’s actions don’t add up to much, but they do make a difference in the grand scheme of things. Making changes, and being part of that, helps because compassion and change are contagious. Doing these things matter because when one person uses their voice, it helps more and more people to use theirs too, and then change happens.

With all of that in mind, here are some things that you and your family can do to make sure that you are good members of your local community. You never know what kind of ripple effect it will have.

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  • Looking through certain things with more compassionate eyes makes a difference to start with. It starts with making an effort to help and reach out to someone local to you that is in need. You might see someone local struggling with their shopping, or have a neighbor that is pretty lonely, or a friend needs some more support with their children. Whatever it is, doing something at least gets things started and makes a difference. Small gestures can have a big impact.
  • Just imagine how different things would be if everyone respected each, even if they have differences. Start off with respect, and teaching children respect, and it will make a big difference. It is something really simple, but will make the difference between peace or not.
  • The communities that we live in are going to be pretty diverse places. Bonds can be formed as we step in and come together, in order to support other people in the local community, as well as other people and families in the community.  If you’re able to, think about volunteering your time; it can help you to meet new people at the same time. You may have qualifications to be able to help with child advocacy in your area, or other worthy causes that need activists or advocates. It can be a good idea to get involved with things like food drives, soup kitchens, and donate what you can to local causes and school events, for example. When you involve your children with what you are doing, it can help them to learn from a young age that these kinds of things are normal to do.

Each person and family is accountable for what they do in their life and have their own conscience to help them to live more responsibly. You can’t say that you don’t judge people that live near you, if you then go ahead and do just that. Don’t claim to be tolerant and accepting, if you actually act untowards to those in your community that are different to yourself. Practice what you preach, and it will make a difference for your whole family.