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    List Of Essential Baby Clothes For Hospital

    Congratulations on the upcoming arrival of your new baby. You must be ecstatic about the big day! Yet, do you know which kinds of clothes you should have in your hospital bag? If not, continue reading as we discuss the most vital clothes you must pack for the baby’s delivery. First I will discuss the details of the essential baby clothes for hospital bags. Then I will provide a brief baby hospital bag checklist to sum it all up at the bottom of this post.

    What Kind Of Baby Clothes Must Be In Your Hospital Bag?

    Most hospitals will provide basic clothes for your newborn while at the hospital. Most often this will be a plain white t-shirt (for easy access) and swaddle blanket. So technically, in most cases, you don’t have to bring any baby clothes for the hospital or birth center. Hats and socks are other baby clothing items that the hospital may provide. However, you may prefer to bring your own. Hospital provided ones are usually very plain, thin, and rather cheap quality. Therefore, lots of people want to bring a newborn baby hospital outfit for baby to wear while they are there as well as a baby coming-home outfit.

    Essential Newborn Baby Clothing

    Comfortable clothes are essential for baby’s arrival. They will be the most important item in the baby’s hospital bag.

    Sleepsuits or Onesies

    Onesies are often considered the most basic, top choice item when packing clothes for baby. Given that typical clothes will keep moving, exposing your child’s skin, securing them with onsies or sleep suits are very useful. They are also great choices because they don’t squeeze baby’s waistline and a comfortable baby is a happy baby. Sleepsuits (also known as sleepers, Sleep & Plays, romper jumpsuits, or sleeper pajamas with built in footies) will ensure your child is comfortable and warm when sleeping during the night. You can get some of the best baby sleepsuits and adorable onesies from leading online outlets like Pixels or nearby physical stores.

    Sometimes it can be good to have a few different sizes. Some babies are born tiny barely fitting newborn clothes while others are born quite large and fit 3-6 month onesies!

    Hats And Socks

    Baby’s head is a large source for heat transfer to hats can help baby regulate temperature better. Ensure to pack some hats and socks for your newborn. It might be cold in the hospital, so you’ll need to keep your baby warm. If you have a baby girl, you may even want a soft bow baby headband- these are great for perfect baby photos!

    Baby Coming-Home Outfits

    That is it for the essential baby clothes but some people like to pack special baby coming-home outfits as well. They tend to go a little fancier for bringing baby home. You might want to consider some of the below items or you can just stick with a going-home outfit with a matching hat.

    Shirts, Pants, Or Dresses

    You may want to try some shirts and pants for the baby. When selecting these clothes, settle for loose, soft ones because you don’t want to hurt your baby’s soft skin with tight clothes.

    Although these clothes are adorable, they can be hectic to put on and take off and may even be uncomfortable for the baby. To avoid such instances, consider choosing:

    Stretchy Leggings And Soft Jeans: These clothes are easy to put on and pull out and won’t press your newborn’s tummy. Babies are vulnerable to indigestion, and tight clothes can only worsen the matter. To ensure the clothes aren’t to blame for your child’s bad mood, dress them in stretchy, flexible clothes.Stretchy Dresses, Tops, Or Tunics: Stretchy dresses, tops, or tunics are easy to go over the head and pull down over the body. Avoid buttoned clothes, especially those with lots of buttons at the back, because they can be difficult to remove.

    Vests

    Vests are great because they can keep your baby from risk of feeling a cold or wet by soaking up the first layer of milk spillage or regular spit-ups. You can use a short-sleeved vest during warm weather and a long-sleeved one for cold weather.

    Besides keeping your baby warm, some vests, such as kimono vests, ensure that diapers stay in place. Additionally, vests protect a baby’s skin from inevitable milk spills and spit-ups absorbed by the outer layer of clothing.

    Jumpsuit Or Cardigans For Warmth

    A newborn should always stay warm. Therefore, it’s essential to pack a jumpsuit or cardigan if you will be traveling home in cool weather. Consider dressing up your newborn with cardigans if you want to be flexible on whether to keep your baby’s sweater buttoned or unbuttoned. However, if you want your child to stay warm all the time, settle for jumpers, especially in the fall or winter.

    Other Baby Necessities

    Here are a few more essential items to go ahead in stick into baby’s diaper bag so you’ll always be ready.

    Blankets And Swaddles

    Although hospitals provide blankets to keep you and the baby warm, carrying one or two from home is a good idea. The extra blankets will act as substitutes once some become dirty. Besides, the hospital’s blankets might not be as comfortable as you’d want them for the newborn; thus, it’s best to bring your own.

    You’ll also need some blankets to protect your baby against the cold when leaving the hospital. Bringing your blankets and swaddles is also useful as nurses will teach you to swaddle your baby correctly the first time. This will ensure you’ll be confident when swaddling your baby, even after going home.

    Burp Cloths

    These are small rectangular cloths that prevent your child’s frequent spit from making it to their clothes, thus preventing them from getting dirty quickly. It’s therefore important to pack some as you’ll need them eventually.

    Dribble Bibs

    It would help if you packed several of these. They’re triangular or rounded cloths placed around the baby’s neck to prevent their clothes from soaking up in spit-ups. Dribble bibs are often fastened with velcro or poppers for easy removal.

    Diapers And Baby Wipes

    Although these baby needs are already at the hospital, it’s a good option to pack a few diapers and baby wipes just in case you should need them. These essentials will surely come in handy and are useful should you plan to go elsewhere after checking out from the hospital. 

    Baby Hospital Bag Checklist

    If you are wondering how many baby clothes to bring to hospital, it depends on your length of stay. VeryWellFamily points out that, “For an uncomplicated vaginal birth, you can expect to stay in the hospital for at least 24 hours; however, most people stay for about two days. If you’ve had a C-section, your stay will be three to four days in most cases. So most people bring 2-4 outfits in their hospital baby bag.

    2-4 sleepsuits or onesies2 socks2 hats1 going-home outfit1 warm jumpsuit for going home if at all chilly1 baby blanket for taking your little one home1 burp clotha few diapers and wipes

    This list is a good starting point. New parents should also make sure the car seat is installed before bringing baby home from hospital.

    Conclusion

    When packing for your child’s delivery, their safety should be at the top of your mind. Thus, you’ll be needing essentials to keep your newborn warm and secure. With the information presented here, you now know what to pack as the due date approaches for your new bundle of joy. Remember to pack your baby’s needs in well advance, just in case they come early! Birth is such a miracle and blessing. Congratulations!

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    Scared of The Dark [How To Solve This Common Problem]

    Somewhere after the long days and months of late-night feedings and diaper changes, and dealing with crying babies, you might experience a new kind of trial. Young children are often afraid of the dark. This fear primarily manifest itself as a kid who doesn’t want to go to sleep. The question then becomes why are kids scared of the dark and how to help them get over fear of the dark. Don’t worry this is a phase that can be handled so you can both get back to your respective beds! Here is advice to share with your children on how to not be scared of the dark.

    Why are kids scared of the dark?

    You’ve probably seen movies, where there’s a young child who’s absolutely convinced that a monster is hiding in his closet or under his bed, and refuses to go to sleep. It turns out that kids often have a fear of the dark and/or a fear of monsters hiding under the bed. This means they they often don’t want to go to bed by themselves or at least without a light on. It seems to be a common phase most children go through. Why is this the case?

    Well, darkness means we have very limited visibility. This is where the fear begins to creep in. I remember thinking I won’t be able to see what is coming for me. This is precisely the reason that fear of the dark seems to be hardwired into us. In fact, according to Science Alert, “our fear of the dark is an evolutionary trait that we picked up to survive real-life predators stalking the night”. This means it is entirely natural and normal for kids to be scared of the dark.

    Add to their fear of the dark the fact that children have excellent imaginations and you can see how they may imagine that the darkness is concealing monsters or attackers. Their minds create excellent realistic images of the things they think of. This can be very frightening for kids to overcome. They feel they need a light or an adult to protect them from lurks in the darkness. Extra sources of darkness and fear maybe the closet or under the bed.

    Secrets For How To Not Be Scared Of The Dark

    If this all sounds familiar, I have some advice on how to deal with kids who are scared of the dark. They need reassurance that this is a normal phase they will get past. You can explain to them that you will help your child overcome their fear of the dark. Tell them you will share your secrets for how to not be scared of the dark. This will help them buy into the whole process.

    Take Comfort: It’s Probably Just a Short Phase

    Most children are only scared of the dark for a little while. However, it may feel like an eternity when you are currently living it. Luckily most kids, find this is a short stage that they’ll grow out of. But there are still things you can do to help them get over their fear of the dark.

    A big reason why kids end up scared of the dark, or believing there are monsters under the bed, is because they have wild, active imaginations. It’s not hard to believe that the rough, dark outline of a sweater is actually a terrifying goblin ready to strike. That is, if you’re a toddler.

    I found that one of the best things to do is to stick to only calm, soothing TV shows and entertainment before bed. It should be happy, upbeat stuff. Have you ever noticed how dark and scary most Disney movies are in some places? When they lay down for bed, they will likely begin to think of the things they saw or read during the day. So make sure they are getting activities right before bed.

    Only say calming things right before bed. Leave off things like, “Don’t let the bed bugs bite.” Don’t say things like, “You have a big day tomorrow.” Try things like “Sweet dreams.” Say things like, “I love you and I will see you in the morning.”

    How to get over fear of the dark with a bedtime routine that works!

    Create a bedtime routine.

    Setting up a bedtime routine is crucial. What you do here is up to you, but some ideas could be: a nice bedtime story, a warm bubble bath, singing lullabies and even just sitting in bed with him until he falls asleep. A consistent bedtime routine works wonders!

    Here are several more ideas for you if you need some extra help. Try them out and see which work for you.

    Get a night light.

    A nightlight can do wonders for making them feel more secure. They’re really cheap and you can find one at Target, Walmart, or even a dollar store for a few bucks. You can also try a motion activated night light so it only comes on if something moves. Nothing is moving if it is not on! Or a solar powered one that will cut on and off automatically with the darkness is great for older children who still need a bit of reassurance.

    Leave the door ajar.

    Leaving the door open slightly could be helpful. Not being completely isolated in the room does a lot to ease their anxiety and worries.

    Play soothing music. 

    Soft, gentle music or using a nice sound machine can help, too. Complete silence can make matters much worse for a kid who’s scared of the dark. Soothing music can help keep their imaginations calm.

    Sleep training clock.

    These types of clocks feature lights that tell kids when it is time to get up and time to sleep (parent sets those times). They also have night lights and soothing music built in so they perform many functions at once. The Mella Ready to Rise Children’s Sleep Trainer clock is the most popular on Amazon and has a 4.5 star rating with almost 15,000 reviews. Affiliate link below.

    Reassure them.

    Simply tell them that there’s nothing to be scared of. There are no monsters or demons lurking in their bedroom, and nothing is going to hurt them. You are right next door if they really need you.

    Calm them.

    Use DIY lavender pillow spray to help them feel calm and relaxed and talk them for a bit as they get sleepy.

    Give them a stuffed animal.

    A stuffed animal can sometimes serve as a trusted friend to watch over them and keep them safe. Plus, just cuddling will help them feel soothed. If you happen to have a cooperative cat or dog, they make serve to make your child feel less alone and vulnerable.

    Set Up A Check Up. Tell them you’ll come to check on them every 5 minutes. Then, you start to space it out more: to 10 minutes, then 15 minutes, and hopefully they’ll be asleep before long.

    Share the bed, if need be.

    Letting them share a bed with you isn’t always an awful idea. As long as it doesn’t get out of hand. A better idea is to stay in their bedroom. That way, they don’t get used to the idea of staying in yours. You can leave when they fall asleep and you are reinforcing the idea that there’s nothing to be scared of in their room.

    Summing Up Ideas To Conquer Night Fears

    In conclusion, nighttime fears are very common in young children, and sometimes there’s nothing we can do to make them go away. For most kids, it’s just a phase they’ll quickly grow out of. We just need to help them along the way a little bit.

    Just try to have patience and not loose your cool. I know it can be frustrating to deal with, but it’s important to keep calm. Don’t get upset at your son or daughter! With a little patience and understanding, and positive reinforcement, I’m sure they’ll be over their fears before you know it!

    Do you have any other tips or tricks to help toddlers who are scared of the dark? I’d love to hear them in the comments!

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    How To Encourage Imaginative Play

    Playing with toys that encourage imagination and pretend play, is not only fun for kids but it can also be a means for their growth and development. When your child acts out a scene between their dolls, they are exploring the possibilities of behavior. The are realizing that imagination and creativity are good things. They are learning to be free in their own minds. Imaginative play helps children explore possibilities.

    “In the world of child development you may hear us use phrases like ‘critical thinking skills’ and ‘creative problem-solving abilities’ when referring to our goals for your child’s cognitive development. What we are really talking about is… imagination”. –Childtime.com

    Encouraging Imaginative Play

    If you want to encourage imaginative play in your child, it is often as simple as allowing them to imagine things instead of accidentally belittling their imagination. If your child is engaged in flying their airplane around the room, and you ask them why they are being silly, they learn that type of imaginative behavior isn’t valued. Other examples of imaginative play may include using a cardboard box as a race car or having a pretend tea party. This type of fantasy play should be encouraged.

    Perhaps, the very best way to encourage imaginative play for toddlers, is to engage in it with them. Set your adult worries aside and embrace your imagination. It doesn’t have to be complex. When my kids were little and they were having bath time, I once used my fingers as puppets because there were no bath toys. That tradition took root and we all have our very own finger puppets, each with their own name and personality. We role play conversations and events and have fun being silly. They know anything they can dream up is interesting to me. They know pretend play can be silly and fun and that it has a special place. The values of such imaginative play are many.

    Benefits of Imaginative Play

    Physical play has always been an important part of a child’s development. They need active play to develop their bodies. In the same way, children’s pretend play helps them to develop their minds. It is through play that their imaginations can be expressed in a vivid manner. A playful manipulation of ideas can actually develop their senses, way of thinking, and values. It gives children a chance to try out different roles that they may have in the future.

    This type of play can also help them develop their social skills and language development. Creative play allows them to practice social interactions and when they do so with others they can see the results of their social behavior in a safe setting. In this way, they begin to learn self-regulation skills. If you observe a child engaged in imaginative play, you may get a clue to the things they are thinking about and insight into any positive or negative feelings they may be processing.

    Many toys today are made in such a way that they help enhance children’s development. Toys that encourage imagination may not only help a child’s social development and cognitive skills but they also enhance his language skills as well. Very good examples of educational toys that encourage imagination can be found below.

    Imaginative play is extra important for preschool age children as well as early school-agers. In Scientific American, Jerome L. Singer and Dorothy G. Singer state that, “Systematic research has increasingly demonstrated a series of clear benefits of children’s engagement in pretend games from the ages of about two and one half through ages six or seven.” 

    Imaginative Play Toys

    Here are five good choices of toys that encourage imagination but there are many, many more options.  Think of leaving out the toys that need batteries to encourage pretend play.

    Kids Play Kitchen

    Young children love to participate in various activities. They often would ask what you’re doing in the kitchen and much as possible try to do it themselves. Kids play kitchen are just the right toys that encourage imagination in children. Play kitchens will teach them basic household chores and responsibilities like washing the dishes, and even develop their interest in cooking or baking. Some of these play kitchens already comes with a counter, a grill or burner, an oven, ice maker, a few cupboards, cabinets, towel racks, refrigerator, storage spaces, and a sink just like a real kitchen would look like. Others also include some toy kitchen utensils like plates, cups, spoons and forks, knives, pans, and with toy foods like fruits, vegetables, and meat.

    Pretend Play With Dolls

    Dolls are a very popular toys that encourage imagination as well as the dollhouses that come with dolls. Children often like to mimic what their mothers or older women do in taking care of babies. Dolls, mini-dolls and dollhouses are also excellent ways in teaching children close family ties and taking care of members in the family or society. This type of make-believe play is great for testing out different scenarios and developing emotional intelligence.

    Workshop Play Set

    The best way to enhance your child’s motor skills and interest in arts is by exposing them to various handcrafting activities. The workshop play set is just the perfect toy to encourage imagination and enhance their different abilities. This set will definitely develop their imagination to create new things and understand how things work. Most workshop play set already includes a table, a bench, and some materials and safe tools for building.

    Medical Play Set

    For kids, pretending to be a doctor would be fun especially when playing with friends or even with dolls. A medical play set can include a doctor costume and a handbag where all medical accessories are placed like a toy stethoscope or thermometer. These are toys that encourage imagination and teach kids about teamwork and leadership.

    Open Ended Building Blocks

    Another of the great imaginative play toys are building blocks. From wooden building blocks for younger children to Legos (without the instruction booklets) for older children, they can be great for open-ended play. Some of the benefits of imaginative play of this type are that they learn principles they can apply in real life. They learn that sometimes things fall, and that sometimes we have to try again and again to get things the way we imagine them. They also learn that building things takes time and focus. Play time is full of life lessons! Blocks are a great way for kids to test different ideas and learn how things work.

    Conclusion

    Don’t underestimate the power of good toys that encourage imagination in developing the minds and skills of your children. Their toys may be an initial step to what they will become in the future. Their early childhood games may allow them to become creative individuals which typically make great problem-solvers.

    I hope you found this interesting and were convinced of the important benefit of early pretend play. Kids can use anything for imaginative play from open-ended toys to imaginary play friends. The imaginary world is calling! What are your favorite toys that encourage imagination?

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    How To Increase Breast Milk Naturally At Home

    Breastfeeding mamas often place a lot of emphasis on how much milk they are producing and tend to worry about whether it is enough for their baby. Keeping track of nursing sessions or pumped bottles can be stressful! However, it’s helpful to consider the quality of your milk in addition to your breast milk production quantity. In most cases, your body does a fantastic job of including all the nutrients your little one needs. This is assuming you are taking good care of your own health and body. Here are five suggestions for how to increase breast milk naturally at home.

    These breastfeeding tips from one mom to another are meant to help your body perform its best. However, this article is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. It is important to speak a qualified doctor if you have any concerns about yourself or your baby’s health or weight. Furthermore, you may also find a professional lactation consultant helpful.

    5 Breastfeeding Tips For Producing More Milk For Your Baby

    We’ve rounded up a few helpful tips on how to produce more breast milk—hopefully putting your mind at ease and assisting you in having a long, successful breastfeeding journey! 

    If you have a breastfed baby, fed either by nursing or pumping, milk production is probably at the forefront of your mind. These easy-to-incorporate tips should help with both breastmilk amount and composition. It is a common concern for a new mom to worry about low milk supply. The good news is that there are natural ways to boost production of breast milk.

    1. Increase Milk Removal.

    The number one solution for how to produce more breast milk is increased milk removal. More milk removal can be done by nursing more often or pumping more often. Pumping can refer to an electric breast pump or a hand held breast pump.

    Milk production is based on supply and demand. If you skip a pumping or nursing session and milk isn’t removed from your breasts, it signals to your body that it doesn’t need to produce as much. Similarly, your body is signaled to produce more if you increase removal! The key is to remember to achieve a “let down” with each removal. A letdown is the trigger your body needs to maintain or increase its supply.

    Try offering a nursing session more often, or adding additional pumping sessions. You can find out more about how often you should nurse or pump for your child’s specific age by talking with baby’s doctor or lactation expert, and reviewing these guidelines.  

    2. Consider Power Pumping.

    If your baby isn’t interested in breastfeeding more, you can always power pump or pump in between sessions. Power pumping typically follows a set of guidelines. They are: pump 20 minutes, rest for 10, pump 10 minutes, rest for 10, pump 10 mins. You may want to consider adding in a pumping session if you still feel like you have milk leftover after nursing, you miss a feeding, or you simply want to boost your supply. 

    Power pumping essentially fools your body into thinking that the breasts are being drained of milk quickly and often, telling it to make more milk ASAP! Emptying the breast to get that rich hindmilk helps to produce high-fat content bottles as well.  

    3. Focus On A Healthy Diet.

    One of the most important breastfeeding tips for producing more milk is that a well balanced diet is best. Carefully considering your diet can not only help with production but in making your milk fattier too. For mothers wondering how to make breastmilk fattier, think about a typical day of eating. Calorie-rich breastmilk is supported by healthy dietary fats like avocado, salmon, seeds, and eggs.

    You should absolutely be staying hydrated. It is a good idea to have a water bottle handy at all times to ensure you are getting enough fluids.

    You could also consider adding lactogenic foods, lactation treats, drinks, or breastfeeding supplements to increase milk supply. There are various galactagoguesnursing mothers can use, from lactation cookies to lactation teas. Some may be more successful for you than others.  

    Popular dietary additions include: 

    A bowl of oatmealFenugreek seedsFennel seedsGingerBrewer’s yeastAshwagandhaAlfalfaGarlicSpirulinaCumin seedsRaspberry leaf tea

    Safety Notes:

    Blessed thistle and milk thistle are thought to be a good way to boost milk production, however, they are likely unsafe while pregnant. Be sure to check with your obstetrician or pediatrician before ingesting anything if you are pregnant or your baby will be consuming your breastmilk. Also, it is best to try home remedies that you are familiar with first. For example, if a simple bowl of oatmeal might help, then you can avoid trying herbal supplements that you are unfamiliar with. You don’t want to risk an allergic reaction. Therefore, stick to things you know your body does well with.

    Photo Credit: Katie Emslie

    4. Nurse From Both Breasts.

    This tip can be a bit “hit-or-miss,” but it works for some mothers. Generally, you want to drain a breast for your baby to receive the rich, fatty hindmilk. However, if your baby only takes one side at each feeding, your overall supply might be lower. 

    Instead, you can try waiting until your baby naturally slows or stops during a feeding and then offer your second breast. Stimulating both breasts each session should boost your supply. Using an electric double pump can be worthwhile if you pump your breast milk. Simultaneously removing milk from your breasts has effectively increased milk production for some women. 

    5. Get Hands-On.

    If you’re having trouble achieving a letdown while nursing or pumping, you could be failing to remove milk from your breasts effectively. Breast massage and warmth might be able to help! An easy way to do this is with your hands. 

    You can use your hands while you pump with an electric pump. Nursing mothers can use a breastfeeding support pillow to help free up their hands. Then, gently massage your breasts with warm hands. This can help trigger a letdown sooner and relax your body, letting the milk flow. Consider using a warm washcloth or compress on your breasts just before nursing or pumping if this is too tricky. 

    I personally had problems with getting enough milk when I was pumping. Skin contact with my baby was helpful if baby was nearby. When apart, I found that warmth on my nipples before pumping helped a lot. In addition having a photo of my baby close by was the best way to stimulate the let down or even to picture baby in my mind and imagine she was breastfeeding.

    A Bountiful & Beautiful Breastfeeding Journey

    We hope these tips have been helpful in how to increase breast milk naturally at home and improve its quality too. New mothers should also remember to relax as stress is detrimental to milk supply. We know it’s not always easy, but hopefully, your breastfeeding journey will become smoother and less worrisome by implementing some or all of these tips. Know that any amount of breastmilk for any length of time is beneficial. You’re doing fantastic, breastfeeding mama! 

    I wish you a healthy supply of breast milk! Have you tried any of these breastfeeding tips for producing more milk? Which ones work well for you?

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    Breaking Barriers In Honor of International Women’s Day

    Every year, March 8th is set aside to honor women, girls, and their limitless potential on International Women’s Day. This global day of celebration has been in existence since the early 20th century. It seeks to bring awareness to various causes related to gender equality and women’s rights. International Womens Day is a great way to honor women who have broken bias and allowed us all to have more freedom. It is also a great way to empower young girls and inspire them in breaking barriers to their own success.

    Today I am excited to have Ramita Anand share a guest post with us for International Women’s Day. She is the founder of the educational mentorship program Elevate.RA. She is also the author a new book, Girl Elevated, (my affiliate link is below). This book is the culmination of more than 15 years of work in education and special learning support. She aims to break the cycle of self-doubt and insecurity that hinders girls both personally and academically.

    What Does International Womens Day Mean To You?

    by Ramita Anand

    For the first several decades of its existence, International Women’s Day was celebrated differently in many countries. In 1977, the United Nations adopted it to help turn it into a mainstream global holiday. For the last several years, the organizers have created a yearly theme to help focus advocacy, policy, and charity work. This theme helps create a shared focus or topic that celebrants can rally behind. This is essential since the lives and experiences of women and girls are so different depending on where they live in the world. 

    #BreakTheBias

    This year, the theme of International Women’s Day is breaking biases, and imagining a gender-equal world free of stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination. For many girls, these biases come into their consciousness when they’re young and color their behavior for the rest of their life. Research has shown that many of our most influential biases are already in place before elementary school. Fortunately, they can be unlearned.  

    Helping Our Daughters Unlearn Gender Bias

    In honor of this year’s International Women’s Day, let’s talk about the biases that most affect our daughters. Let’s take a look at how we can empower them to fight against the stereotypes and labels that so often get in the way of their success. 

    One of the biases that I’m so passionate about overturning is that a learning difference or challenge means that a girl cannot succeed in formal education. Even though girls are equally likely to be diagnosed with a learning disability like ADHD or dyslexia, they are less likely to receive specialized treatment under the Individuals with Disabilities Act (IDEA). It was recently revealed that 18% of male students received special services under IDEA. However, only 10% of female students receive the same.  

    As a parent, you can be your daughter’s advocate to help her get the services she needs. Additionally, there are many programs and tools designed to help girls access their strengths and navigate any anxieties they have around their education. 

    4 Ways to Help Empower Young Girls To Break The Barriers

    There are lots of forces out there in the world trying to tell our daughters that they are less intelligent and less capable than their peers, especially if those peers are male. 

    Many parents struggle to understand how to empower young girls to break down barriers and stereotypes that are unjust. Today, I’ll share some of my best suggestions for ways to empower your daughter and help her thrive, especially if she’s dealing with a learning difference. 

    Be an advocate 

    Many times, girls with learning disabilities don’t find out until later in life because the diagnosing criteria are based on more noticeable symptoms exhibited by boys. If you suspect that your child is having a difficult time and may be struggling with a learning disability, be their advocate until they can get the appropriate help.    

    Involve your child in decision-making as early as possible 

    A great way to help your daughter feel more empowered to tackle her studies despite her learning difference is to get her involved in the decision-making process as early as possible. Explain to her the benefits of specific actions, and show her how they can help. This will help her feel more in control of her own academic future. 

    Keep lines of communication open 

    Encouraging your daughter to share her thoughts and feelings with you on a regular basis will help her develop much-needed emotional intelligence. As you learn more about her day-to-day life and how she is handling her learning disability, it will help you better advocate for their needs. 

    Be positive

    Our kids take many of their cues from us, especially in the early years. If they can see you being positive and forward-thinking instead of giving in to frustration, it will help them model these behaviors in their own life. 

    This International Women’s Day, take the time to reflect on how you can embody the themes of this year. Use them to help your daughter embrace her power.  

    Thanks again to Ramita Anand, founder of Elevate.RA, an educational mentoring service. I hope you found her message to be an inspiration. It is so important to support girls in breaking barriers that are unfair and hinder their success. Low self-esteem and a lack of confidence disproportionately affect our girls. Therefore, I really appreciate her tips for fighting against this common problem.

    I am thankful for all the women who fought to the break the barriers that stood in our way and provide women with equal rights. What does international women’s day mean to you?

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    Parent Chat Videos: Online Parenting Classes For Elevated Results

    So often I have heard people say, too bad parenting doesn’t come with a handbook. While that is true, there are lots of great resources to help you wade through the sometimes murky waters of parenting. I have recently found one such positive parenting resource that really stands out, the sponsor of this post- Parent Chat Videos. If reading is not your thing or you just want to learn more, you will love these wonderful parenting videos that promote Mindful Parenting. The online parenting classes all feature Celeste Gonsalves. She is very personable and has a wonderful way of helping parents connect with children and improve relationships with her elevated parenting tips.

    About Parent Chat Videos

    Parent Chat Videos is a library of online parenting courses created by Celeste Gonsalves. She is a Hawaii native with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Family Resources. She also has a Master of Science Degree in Organizational Leadership.

    Celeste Gonsalves created Parent Chat Videos as a way of sharing positive parenting classes. She is a mother and the author of Teen Wise, a book set that helps guide pre-teens and teenagers to make wise choices. She is an expert on ideas and solutions for mindful parenting that offer better experiences for adults, children and teens.

    Parenting Mindset Shift

    You may have stumbled across this humorous statement before, “If parenthood came with a GPS, it would mostly say ‘recalculating.’”

    Well, that is the idea here. Parent Chat Videos will help you with recalculating by creating a mindset shift so you can employ parenting methods that will produce better results for you and your children. We are talking about making simple changes to achieve new elevated outcomes. 

    Whether you want to call it respectful parenting, elevated parenting, mindful parenting, or positive parenting, you will love her online classes. All of her parenting concepts, approaches, and goals will help you connect and improve communication with your child for better results.

    Parent Chat Videos contains 13 courses covering a variety of topics, along with practical tips in each video that you can implement immediately! Sign up for your free 10 day trial (no credit card needed) at parentchatvideos.podia.com

    Mindful Online Parenting Classes

    Parent Chat Videos currently offers 13 Parenting Courses with 39 video parenting classes and fresh content is added on a regular basis. From baby focused parenting courses to teen focused parenting classes, there are lots of resources for all stages of parenting. She can help you harness the power of positive parenting for children of all ages.

    Celeste Gonsalves believes that we can all make small changes to modify our parenting. She helps you understand your child’s point of view so you can make decisions to better protecting the integrity of your relationships. She helps you understand where they are and how to reach them. Her proven techniques will help you avoid frustrations and reach your desired outcome.

    The online parenting classes cover many different parenting topics. What I really love about these parenting videos is that Celeste Gonsalves is really great about having a clear actionable focus for each video. So she is not talking about esoteric ideas and principles of parenting. She is providing parenting solutions for real problems we all face as parents. She also shares her own real life examples so you can see how these mindful parenting approaches actually work as well as when and how to use them.

    After just one short video, you will probably find yourself a more confident parent already. It is nice to have someone in your corner helping you build effective parenting skills.

    Parenting Goals

    I love how each Parent Chat video has a clear parenting goal. Each online parent class is designed so you can improve parenting situations and fix problems.

    One of my favorite parent classes “Get Your Child or Teen to Talk.” These are both such prevalent problems that almost all parents encounter. Celeste she does such a fantastic job sharing a story and illustrating practical solutions.

    Personal Experience

    Both of my children are teens. I feel myself groping around for questions that will get them to talk. I want them to really open up and share stories and feelings, instead of one word answers. In “Get Your Child or Teen to Talk”, Celeste reminded me of my child’s point of view upon getting in the car after a long day at school. She also clearly understood my point of view as the parent. I appreciated that she knows our battery of questions is our attempt to connect. I also appreciated the reminder that the kiddos may be tired and feel overwhelmed by too many questions, too fast.

    This weekend we did some fun crafting as the video suggested. She had pointed out in the video that if you can get your child engaged in a creative activity, they can relax and open up to listening and sharing more easily. She also suggested opening up and sharing a story to get the ball rolling. Naturally, my kids responded to my story sharing their opinions and questions on the situation. And pretty soon they were sharing their own stories. I found it be much easier to get them chatting about things that were going on at school and books that they were reading with this method. It is so nice to hear their opinions on things. I also know it is an important way to maintain positive relationship where information flows freely.

    Parenting Goal- Connect With Kids While Crafting. My teenage daughter with her battery powered pipe cleaner glow rings!

    A few more examples of online parenting classes I loved:

    Teen’s First Love AND HeartbreakB.O.U.N.C.E coping skill to deal with negative influencesInstant Happy ChildManaging Screen Time

    Parenting Support Group

    Another cool part about Parent Chat Videos besides the videos themselves is that there is a community. This means you have access to online chats for open discussions. You can ask your own parenting questions and get specific help. It is like having a parenting support group that will help you along.

    You will also be able to join the fun of entering the weekly Video Scavenger Hunt contest. All prizes are created and/or designed by authentic Hawaii Entrepreneurs and are worth at least $200.00!

    Sign Up Now For A Free Trial

    Visit Parent Chat Videos and sign up for a FREE 10-Day Trial and get instant access (don’t worry, no credit card is required). 

    Become a Parent Chat Vidoes member and use Coupon Code: FFB20  to get $20.00* off the PCV Monthly Membership Fee!

    Whether you are a married couple or a single parent, we all have busy schedules. Each online course can be completed at your own pace. New parents and experienced parents alike will find this parent education for creating healthy relationships. You can be a peaceful parent and with happy kids and still use positive discipline in an effective way.

    Surprise your children with this unconventional, mindful parenting approach that fosters mutual respect and reduces power struggles. It will help you with personal growth and improve family relationships. You’ll be amazed with the positive outcomes.

    Would you like to be a better parent? Are you looking for home parenting solutions? I think this positive parenting system can help. I hope you enjoy the Parent Chat Videos online parenting classes as much as I do! Let me know some of your favorites! More

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    Parenting Teen Boys- 10 Things You Should Know

    The teen years can be a bit challenging for any parent. There is always a push and pull as your child is starting to assert their independence, sometimes through inappropriate, dangerous ways. While teenage boys still very much need your attention, parenting advice and rules, they probably won’t act like they want it. Parenting teen boys has its own special set of challenges.

    As teenagers, boys often start to close up and stop talking to you the way they used to. They are testing things out to see how they work and the response they get. Teens can sometimes be in a rush to try and do new things. They’re starting to find their way in the world and naturally, they will often mimic behaviors they have seen. Some of this exploration is great and some of it may not be so great. The lessons they are learning will help shape them into the good men they will one day be, even if they don’t quite know what that means yet.

    Parents are often left trying to figure out what they need to do to reach their teen sons. Teen Boys need to given an outlet to explore and grow in healthy ways. They should also be encouraged to get plenty of healthy exercise as a way to release stress and handle the extra testosterone that their teen bodies are not entirely used to yet. It is important for teenage boys to have clear boundaries. They also need to know they can come to you to talk about important issues or questions without being shamed.

    These tips for parenting teen boys will help you stay close to them even as they start to become independent.

    10 Tips For Raising A Teenage Son

    Provide Action Oriented Feedback

    According to Dr. Robin Alter, when parenting boys, “we must be more action oriented and less verbal.” He argues that boys tend to respect action more than just words. As parents, we can keep this in mind by demonstrating our own positive examples of the behavior we wish to see.

    We can also use a more action oriented approach­ in asking for the behaviors we want that will demonstrate the quality we wish to see. For example, “Show me by your actions that you are sorry,” instead of a critical, “You are so irresponsible” without instructions for action to achieve being responsible.

    In general, while parenting teen boys, remember you are trying to build them up. You want to show teens the ideals they should aspire to achieve. Don’t shout at, nag, or shame teenage boys. Instead, set clear expectations and offer encouragement. Have rules and do enforce the rules with reasonable consequences. Help them realize they can do better and they can show you that with how they handle the same situation next time.

    Remove Entitlement

    We often give our kids things because we think it’ll make them happy and make them love us more. In reality, it just creates a sense of entitlement and sometimes it even results in low self-esteem because they aren’t working to achieve things themselves. Instead, set boundaries for teens and make them work for what they want. Encourage them to get a part-time job to help pay for the car they want. They should do chores to help out around the house and be part of your family “team.” Working to earn money or even privileges teaches teenagers to have respect and responsibility for what they have.

    Teach Empathy

    Empathy is one of the core values that seems to be in short supply in our world these days. Teach teen boys that they don’t need to experience someone else’s pain in order to relate and understand. Discuss current events and local news stories. Ask them how these stories make them feel. Model good behavior and explain your feelings towards these same situations. Notice when they do nice things like pick up trash they didn’t drop or hold the door open. Commend them when they do things right so they know that their actions are noticed and appreciated. Tell them when they do a good job.

    Don’t Look for Instant Compliance

    Your teenage son is starting to have a life of his own and do things that are just as important to him as your activities are to you. It’s okay to ask him to do something for you, but don’t get upset when he doesn’t drop what he’s doing to comply instantly. Respect the fact that he needs a minute or two to finish what he’s doing. You can say something like, “when you finish texting your friend, please take the trash out.” Showing respect for them will help them to show more respect for you and others.

    Be Flexible

    It may be hard to accept, but your way may not always be the best way, and it is certainly not the only way. Shocking, I know! Sometimes, you have to let your child learn things for themselves. They may end up choosing your way as the best way in the end. However, let them try and fail and figure things out for themselves on small things. Learning that it is ok to fail and to always try again is an important life lesson. Be open to looking at things from a different viewpoint, hearing what your teenage son has to say, and trying to see their point of view. They might even have a better way, on occasion!

    Coping With Emotions And Aggressive Behavior

    All teenagers can be subject to mood swings as they are experiencing new feelings and subject to new hormonal levels. Boys in particular are experiencing higher levels of the testosterone hormone. While this is great for their physical changes it can cause behavioral differences.

    Studies show that “During human puberty, there is an approximate 30-fold increase in testosterone production in boys. This increase is often linked to changes in mood and behavior in adolescence such as aggression, an increase in risk taking, and depression.” It is important to know this is going on and is normal. However, that does not mean that negative behaviors (especially aggressive behaviors) should be overlooked. In fact, it means that we should take extra care to help boys express their emotions find healthy ways of coping with these emotions.

    Stanford research shows that “The rational part of a teen’s brain isn’t fully developed and won’t be until age 25 or so.” Teens tend to process information in the amygdala with more emotional playing into their decisions. Parents ,as authority figures, are the most important role models in a child’s life. They can help by encouraging them and showing them how to think things through in a rational way. Stanford suggests, “Remind your teens that they’re resilient and competent. Because they’re so focused in the moment, adolescents have trouble seeing they can play a part in changing bad situations. It can help to remind them of times in the past they thought would be devastating, but turned out for the best.”

    Talk About The Pitfalls Before They Happen

    We all know that the teenage years have typical pitfalls such as peer pressure, drugs, alcohol, or running with the wrong crowds. It is important to talk about these things before they come up. They should know your expectations and have clear rules. They should understand the possible consequences of risky behaviors and poor decisions. There should be a clear understanding that you will take away privileges if they break rules.

    Talk To Them About Girls

    Adolescence is a time of change and undoubtedly, they will begin to pay more attention to girls than ever before. They need to understand how to treat teenage girls like ladies. They should understand the basics of behaving like a gentleman. Parents also need to have a dating and sex talk with their boys. Do not assume your teenage boys know everything until you tell them. Help them learn what healthy relationships look like. Talk about your expectations, discuss dangers of getting swept away, set limits, and answer their questions.

    Help Them Plan, But Don’t Do It For Them

    When parenting teen boys, it can seem like you need to run the show to make sure the right things happen. If your son seems lazy to you, remember that they are going through a lot of change. They need to be empowered to believe in themselves. Clinical psychologist Adam Price is the author of a helpful book that provides great strategies to reduce your involvement while encouraging theirs.

    Yes, this is a big time for teenage boys. The high school years are important years and they will begin to think about colleges and career paths. Help them with this process BUT respect that they need to be in charge. This is your son’s life and they need to be able to be an active participant, not just sitting in the passenger seat. As they become young adults, you need to be handing over the reins and watching to make sure they know how to use them!

    Just Listen and Notice Changes In Behavior

    Your son probably already knows many of your opinions on the world. Teens already know that you want them to pick up their dirty socks, and what’s expected of them in school. What they really need from you is someone that will just listen. Make time for them, whether it’s early in the morning as you’re having breakfast together, or late at night when the rest of the house is asleep. Take time to ask about them. Ask teen boys what they think about things, what they want for themselves, what might be upsetting them or making them happy. Create a safe space for them to feel heard and understood.

    And while you are listening you are making them feel heard and important. You are showing them you care. You are teaching them how to be good listeners. Furthermore, you are also creating a good baseline on their feeling and way of communicating. If there are sudden changes in behavior, you are more likely to notice them. You can ask about how things are going and make sure they know they can talk to you about anything.

    Parenting Tips For Teenage Boys Conclusion

    My best advice is to make sure you are spending quality time with your teen boys. This sets the stage for close relationships with open discussion. These are your last years with your son in your house. Cherish them. Take the opportunity to impart important life lessons as they come up. This is a good time for parents of teens to stay involved in their son’s everyday life. Yes, they are forming their own identity but they still need your guidance and support during this often stressful time.

    Parenting teen boys can be a challenge. However if you keep the lines of communication open and you show them the same respect you want them to show you, it will become easier on both of you. They need to be encouraged not discouraged. It will make for a better relationship and the entire family will stay stronger and more resilient.

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    Parenting A Strong Willed Child

    A strong willed child is often regarded in either a very positive light or a very negative light, depending on your preconceptions. So is a strong willed bad? I certainly don’t think so. As with most things, there are positives and negatives to being strong willed. A iron-willed child will be resolute and determined. Those are great qualities in the right circumstances. In fact they can make for great leaders! However, a strong-minded child can also be inflexible and mulish. Those qualities generally result in more negative behaviors. If you are parenting a strong willed child, you may be about at the end of your rope. Don’t fear. Take a deep breath, help is here.

    The Strong-Willed Child

    If your spirited child

    Engages in frequent temper tantrums Doesn’t accept instructions at face valueSeems to enjoy arguing with you over everythingLikes to ask “why” on a regular basisAnd tends to be outspoken and disruptive

    Then you’re probably parenting a strong-willed child. Headstrong kids like to learn things for themselves instead of accepting what others tell them. They want to be in charge of themselves so strong willed children usually test the limits you set. They will often desire to do what they think is the right thing above everything else.

    This can certainly create some difficult and challenging days for parents. It’s good to accept your child’s temperament and encourage them to think for themselves. This can help avoid constant power struggles. On the other hand, they also need to learn that there are boundaries and expectations that they will need to comply with.

    How To Parent A Strong Willed Child

    Some people would say, “how to deal with a strong willed child” but I think that sounds a bit negative. Remove your preconceptions that “they need to be dealt with” and replace them with a more positive framing. What you really want to figure out is how to parent a strong willed child. These tips will help you set boundaries with your strong-willed child’s behavior while also giving them the space they need to be themselves. Consistently working in a loving way to strengthen the parent-child relationship and set clear expectations will help reduce behavior problems.

    1. Establish Family Rules

    Gather all of the family members for a family meeting about the rules you want to set. Explain the expectations and what your kids can expect the result to be if they don’t comply. Welcome feedback from your kids about rules they feel are important or why they feel certain rules aren’t important. Explain that the rules are for everyone and ask your child if they understand the rules and the consequences of breaking them. Once you have this buy in from strong willed kids, it is more likely they will make good choices.

    2. Create Predictability

    Strong-willed children don’t do well when their power is taken away from them. Creating structure helps them to know what is expected of them. And if a day is going to be a little off from the norm, talk to your child about it ahead of time. In this way, they know what to expect beforehand instead of expecting them to adjust at a moment’s notice. Taking time to communicate with them about changes will help avoid their frustration and resulting disruptive behavior.

    3. Forget Ultimatums

    A strong-willed child will see an ultimatum as a challenge and they won’t back down. If they misbehave and you give them a time-out until they’re ready to cooperate, they’ll sit in time-out all day long. Instead, encourage cooperation by working with them. Next time, instead of giving them time-out until they’re ready to clean up their toys, work together to clean them up. This will has the added benefit of helping them learn to work together with others.

    4. Be Patient

    Furthermore, delaying gratification can be a better way of encouraging your child to cooperate than time outs. For instance, they can’t go outside to play or ride bikes until the toys are cleaned up. They’ll be more inclined to do the thing they don’t want to do so that they can do the thing they do want to do. Instead of getting involved in a battle of wills, they will mostly like chose the good behavior themselves in order to get what they really want.

    5. Pay Attention

    Your child may not be able to accurately verbalize what they’re feeling, but they’ll show it in their actions. Pay attention to their frustration and anger levels. When do they feel the most frustrated, what is upsetting them, and how do they handle it? These can be clues to help you figure out how to best help them cope. Remember that younger children are still learning to identify their own emotions and understand how to communicate big feelings. A child’s emotions are sometimes confusing to them as well. However their behavior offers a clue. A defiant child displaying aggressive behavior usually feels something is unfair and they feel angry. If you can find a way to help them express themselves with their words, they will often feel better and behave better.

    More Resources For Parenting A Strong Willed Child

    Want more reading on the subject? Try the very well reviewed book, Parenting The Strong-Willed Child: The Clinically Proven Five-Week Program for Parents of Two- to Six-Year-Olds. This classic by Rex Forehand, Ph.D. and Nicholas Long Ph.D. has helped hundreds of thousands of parents with disciplining a strong willed child using positive reinforcement. They have lots of great ideas for managing the strong-willed temperament in effective ways.

    A strong-willed child can certainly test your patience, but they’re also free thinkers, go-getters, and independent- all qualities you want to encourage! By helping them find the best ways to express themselves and deal with the times they have to comply with rules, you’ll both find some satisfaction. As you help these experiential learners with problem solving difficult situations, you will see their behavior improve in important ways.

    I hope these tips for parenting a strong willed child help you find an effective style of parenting and reduces behavioral challenges. Being a positive parent with happy kids will suit you all better. Which suggestion did you find the most helpful?

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