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  • Pets and children can become stressed during moving. If moving locally, you may want to leave these special family members with a friend during moving day.
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    September 22, 2014
    Toddler Activities (That Are Totally Not Distractions)

    Babies and toddlers need constant supervision! You never know what they are going to get into, even if you have the most baby-proofed house in the world. But, there are also important things that you need to get done. House work, cooking, working with older kids on homework, working from home, taking care of pets- the list never ends. So, you need a way to keep an eye on the younger kids, while also being able to multitask and get other things done. Keeping them busy with educational and fun activities is the way to go! Set your toddler up in the same room as you with one of these activities from Amanda at Dirt and Boogers, then go about whatever else you need to get done. Of course, never leave your child alone- and always supervise (especially if they’re playing with water).

    -Clothespin drop- have your child drop clothespins into an empty container (like a milk jug), dump them out, then do it again. It helps with hand-eye coordination.

    -Water play- lay down some towels, put water in a large plastic bin, and fill it with balls, cups, and other toys.

    -Put together a sensory bin- fill it with large items with bright colors, different smells, and different textures- let your child explore.

    Photo Credit: Philippe Put 

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    September 19, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Origami Box Craft

    I used to make these all the time when I was a kid! This is a fun activity for children who are first learning origami.

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    September 18, 2014
    Painless Dentist Visits For Kids

    I hate going to the dentist- who doesn’t? I try my hardest to maintain good dental hygiene. I brush twice a day, use mouthwash, and floss…..occasionally. Okay, my dental health could be better. Next week, I’m finally getting my wisdom teeth out, because my dentist thinks it will help. Needless to say, I’m extremely nervous. I’ve had plenty of bad experiences with my teeth, and I’m sure I would have had less if I took better care of myself. I never want my kids to have to deal with the kind of tooth pain that I have-so this is something I’m going to be very strict about. Good dental practices start at home! But, dentist visits are crucial- good teeth or not- and every child has to go at least twice a year. And sometimes, this can give kids (AND adults) some serious anxiety. For ways to make the dentist visits more palatable, read this article by Devan McGuinness at

    -Find a pediatric dentist who is good with kids

    -Explain often the importance of oral health- talk often about brushing, flossing, and visiting the dentist.

    -Make dental visits often (at least every six months) so it seems less unknown.

    -Explain to your child what is going on, in terms they understand, again- to ease the fear of the unknown.

    Photo Credit: Loren Kerns 

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    September 17, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Fierce Little Fashionista!

    Photo from Pinterest

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    September 16, 2014
    Scavenger Hunt At The Store

    I believe it’s extremely important for everyone to know where their food is coming from. It’s a cornerstone for good nutrition, and for staying healthy through life. Shopping for your groceries, growing your own vegetables, preparing, and cooking your own food will lead you to healthier choices, and also lets you take pride in what you’re eating. This also applies to children! Take them shopping with you, let them help you cook! Make sure they know exactly where everything is coming from. One way to get kids involved is to make it fun! I always like trying to make things into games. That’s why I love this brilliant post by Jamie Reimer at Hands On As We Grow. She turned grocery shopping into a fun scavenger hunt game– with kids who can’t read yet. Check it out:

    Before heading to the grocery store, I clipped some pictures of the snacks out of the weekly ads in the newspaper. I also clipped the label off of products I still had at home.

    And just taped them onto a piece of paper.

    I tried really hard to not help the kids and lead them to where the items of food were in the store.

    I also took this as an opportunity to get the boys to kindly ask for help when they needed it. Something I’ve been working on lately.

    Photo Credit: Jaro Larnos 

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    September 15, 2014
    Showing Your Child That You Love Them

    Just like a relationship with a significant other, relationships with your family need you to put effort in them in order for them to thrive. With family, it can be easy to just assume that they know that you love them. And they do! But every once in a while, it’s nice to give them a reminder. Showing your kids a little extra love will do wonders for your relationships, and lets them know that they’re always on your mind. Read this post by Kristina Manscill at Mothers Niche for some ideas:

    -Always eat family dinner together

    -Know Your Child’s “Love Language” and Find Ways to Express it Often.

    -Take the time to be silly, to be messy, and to take in life’s simple pleasures. 

    -Get to Know Their Friends and love them as your own. 

    -Discover their Talents and Put Them to Use. 

    -Surprise!  Find fun ways to shock them with your love.  Love your children with surprises! Do something they wouldn’t expect.

    Photo Credit: THOR 

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    September 12, 2014
    Friday Fun Video: Dad Jokes

    Is it a bad sign that I laughed at almost all of these?

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    September 11, 2014
    Pregnancy Announcement Inspiration

    The internet, particularly Pinterest, is positively fertile with pregnancy announcement ideas. Gone are the days when you just called everyone and told them. People are getting creative! If you recently found out that you are pregnant, and want to reveal it in an original way, there is plenty of inspiration out there. Check out this compilation post by Katherine Martin at the Baby Center Blog for ideas:

    -Have a younger sibling announce that they’ll be a big brother or sister!

    -Line the family up and take a picture in your shoes. Add a pair of baby shoes at the end of the line!

    -Design a fake magazine cover

    -Try a baby countdown photo

    -Take a family photo with you holding the ultrasound!

    Photo Credit: Babycenter 

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    September 10, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Tree Bookshelf

    Photo from Theresa 

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    September 9, 2014
    Keys To Homework Success

    As much as kids (and sometimes even parents!) hate homework, it is still a vital part of learning. It gives students practice for tests, and the reviewing outside of a classroom helps with retention. Of course, it can sometimes be a major pain. I didn’t think there were any ways to make homework more tolerable: I used to just grit my teeth and push through it. But, I was wrong! There are plenty of ways to make homework a success, and maybe even something that kids enjoy doing. For helpful hints, read this post by Katrina Guevara at Fantastic Fun and Learning:

    -Set up a homework station

    -Schedule daily “homework time” and stick to it

    -Create a “homework tub”: . It includes all of the supplies they generally use to complete homework and the supplemental materials I give them each day.

    -Get involved! Make a “parent basket”: My daughters are always coming home with papers from school. Some I need to return, some I need to keep as reminders, and others I need to keep so that I know what is going on at the school, so I created a parent basket to organize these materials.

    Photo Credit: trazomfreak 

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