Showing posts with label parenthood. Show all posts
Showing posts with label parenthood. Show all posts

The 20 Best Children's Books About Feelings

Please note, this post includes affiliate links -
regardless all opinions expressed below are completely my own.


Helping children work through emotions is a difficult task at times, especially during the toddler years when most kiddos are still learning their language skills.

Feelings can be very overwhelming, but luckily you are there to help guide your little one through all of the emotions they are feeling and hopefully you can teach them to express themselves in healthy ways.

One way we've been working with D to express her emotions is by reading to her. It may sound too simple, but reading her books about her feelings has helped her expand her emotional vocabulary which has made expressing herself so much easier! From anger to sadness to joy, it is so cool witnessing her speak her truth.

Are you going through the throws of toddlerhood with your little one and experiencing fits and outrageous behavior? Here's some books to help you and your toddler cope through this intense phase in their life:

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These 20 books are some of the best, but I'm curious - do you know of any books that I should add to this list? Tell me in the comments below and I'll add them to our library list and possibly this list as well!


Fostering Independence in Your Toddler - 4 Ways to Encourage Your Kiddo to be Independent

This post is sponsored by Earth's Best Peanut Butter Puffs but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

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Raising an independent child is something I'm truly striving to do. This may be hard to believe, since I mean, I've openly admitted I have an issue, at times, with being a helicopter parent... but it's something I'm working on, I swear. The thing is, even though it's taxing and sometimes down right maddening debating with a toddler - I'm always excited to hear her speak her truth and that is why it's all worth it. Every hissy fit over a tiny misunderstanding, every crocodile tear shed over a mishap, every little ounce of drama she creates... it's all tough to deal with at times, but it's all a great reminder that she's this amazing, magnificent, overwhelmingly awesome little person and she's just expressing herself.

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Now don't get me wrong, we don't encourage her to throw fits at the store after we tell her "no". But hey, it happens and instead of spanking her or abandoning ship and heading out to the car, I've learned that reasoning with her and discussing why she feels upset truly does help. I mean, it may not have a year ago, but now that she's so much more vocal - it only makes sense to discuss her feelings with her.

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I mean, Delainey isn't a perfect child, by any means... She's extremely emotional about 99% of the time so we are constantly having discussions, but with encouraging her independence I'm seeing some major changes in her behavior and well, that just warms my heart. Maybe I'm doing something right, after all? I think we all know that warm, endearing feeling.

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So I guess you're probably wondering what types of changes we made to fight the toddler struggles of terrible twos and terrifying threes?



How exactly have we encouraged Delainey to be more independent lately...? Here's the scoop:

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The first step we took toward independence was encouraging her love of mysteries. She's really been into the idea of "vestigating" [see also investigating] all kinds of things lately and I'm 100 on-board with it.


From being curious about where electricity comes from to asking me to uncover a stone with her in the backyard, I've been going full force and encouraging her curious behavior in a healthy and productive way. Wanting her to solve the mysteries herself, I set her up for success and sit back and help when asked. I love watching her make discoveries and analyze situations and I've also seen her use those same problem solving skills in situations with her peers and sometimes even when she's negotiating with me.

Plus, we've learned new things and we've also solved some mysteries! Being a "detective" with my little firecracker is truly helping her come out of her shell and she's "blossomed", if I can humbly brag for a bit.


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The next step we've taken on this path to independence is allowing her to call the shots. 

 

Well, sometimes we let her take the lead, anyways. She doesn't "rule the roost", but she is often in charge of decisions that effect her, as we see fit.

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One of the first decisions I noticed she LOVED making was what to have for snack time. From fruit to crunchy munchies, she's always looking for something new to try and she's always excited to shop the organic section at Walmart. So when she saw the delicious Earth's Best Organic Peanut Butter Puffs (with Elmo on the front), I already knew it was game over and she had found a snack she loved.


As soon as she saw it, she grabbed the package and told me "dis one, mama, I want dissss"! I was curious about what she had picked, but once I saw it's an ideal snack for toddlers and made of only 5 ingredients, I knew that we 100% we had found a snack we could agree on and she was thrilled to grab a couple of bags!

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This a great "starter snack" for her. These delicious, dissolve in your mouth treats are something we both can enjoy and appreciate... but the best part is, it's so easy just to grab a pack and go!

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Want to give these yummy Peanut Butter Puffs a try? Hit up Walmart or get more information on the delicious, toddler friendly snack here!
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I promise, you and your toddler will be huge fans of this easy, delicious snack!

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Another step we took to foster independence in our wild girl was letting her learn new things on her own.

We've struggled through worksheets in the past and I've tried coaching her on how to properly get a toy to work, but allowing her to completely learn to do something on her own has been life changing for us both. Instead of tears of frustration, we now spend our time peacefully waiting as she has decided she will be the one to feed herself, brush her own teeth, dress herself, etc. It may be time consuming and sometimes I have to redo her work, but seeing her satisfied with herself after accomplishing a great "feat", I'm not changing this for the world. That look of success and her absolutely beaming pride as she's accomplished a new task, there's nothing like it in the world.

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The last step but possibly the most important step since it relates to all the other steps, is CONSTANTLY reminding myself to let go and let her live.

I mean, I'm still fully involved since she's a tiny little nugget in the scheme of things, but I try to let her do her thing more often than not, as I nervously watch every step from a far. With growing her independence, she's become truly her own person and I've had to let go even more recently and it's been such an amazing, bittersweet feeling. One of the many recent ways I've really had to "let it go" was allowing her to choose activities she wanted to do and watching her form her own friendships. It's been amazing to see who she is becoming, but man, no one warned me this all would happen so quickly. She went from a baby to this strong, capable little kiddo in the blink of an eye.

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While it may sound crazy, the independence seems to help her in so many ways, from gaining confidence in herself to better listening skills - we are really in a good spot. I''m curious, do you have a toddler as well - if so, how do you foster their independence? If your little one is in a different stage in life, I'd still love your input, after all - we're all on this journey together and hey, as they say, "it takes a village".

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For most infants with severe eczema and/or egg allergy who are already eating solid foods, introducing foods containing ground peanuts between 4 and 10 months of age and continuing consumption may reduce the risk of developing peanut allergy by 5 years of age. FDA has determined, however, that the evidence supporting this claim is limited to one study.



Making Toddler Meal Time Enjoyable with Happy Family Organics & Mama Mentors!

This post is sponsored by Happy Family Brands but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.



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Meal times should be enjoyable... I mean, sure, we all can agree they should be... but when you're two and learning to express yourself in different ways sometimes lunch involves screaming silly words at the top of your lungs and other times dinner is filled with tears and complaints, even though your plate is full of foods you previously loved.

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Toddlerhood. That's what this is. She's a ball full of confusion, sass, and knowledge. One day she begs for carrots, the next she throws them at the dog. One thing she hasn't started handing over to her canine companion is her Happy Tot snacks and bless it, I'm so thankful for this fact.

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The thing is, we were worried a few weeks ago when she started turning down all her favorites, I had no clue what to think - so I turned to my new friends over at HappyFamilyOrganics.com and actually was able to get some sound advice on how to cure her picky eating habits once and for all.

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When the expert I spoke to mentioned "Division of Responsibility" it sounded more like a chore chart than a way to solve our issue, but she explained it a little further and it basically breaks down the feeding relationship between parent and child and allows your child to take the lead & follow her instincts in a way that's right for her.

Toddlers are a ball full of knowledge, sass, and confusion - don't make meal time any more difficult than it already is... Check out how Happy Family Organics & their team of mama mentors can help you!

What it gets down to is, providing your child with an adequate, wholesome meal and letting her take the reigns at that point. This is tough sometimes, when she's being a little sassy pants especially - but it's easier when we tie in familiar parts of her diet - like Happy Tot Pouches.

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We have introduced some new foods to her recently that have been huge hits - like the Happy Tot Protein bars. She sees the box and sometimes demands one for snack time, which is a-okay with me since she isn't a fan of most other protein-rich foods.

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One last way that we've found to encourage her to eat, is offering something she truly enjoys once she finishes something else on her plate... this may not be ideal, I believe it's actually called bribery, but when I just want her to eat some carrots, I'll offer a Happy Tot Cookie and she's all set to chow down on some veggies!

Toddlers are a ball full of knowledge, sass, and confusion - don't make meal time any more difficult than it already is... Check out how Happy Family Organics & their team of mama mentors can help you!

Are you experiencing some food troubles with your kiddo? From breastfeeding help to encouraging your kiddo to enjoy a meal, the experts at Happy Family Organics are here to help. Check out the website and chat with an expert now and then grab your kiddo some delicious, nutritious Happy Family foods the next time you're at the store!

Teaching Your Toddler: Simple Alphabet Crafts - The Letter A - Ants on an Apple




Introducing the alphabet to your little one should be fun. Whether it's through a simple craft or a new activity, it's important that the time spent is enjoyable!



Delainey is a little sponge so she's a huge fan of our new daily time spent learning all of the letters of the alphabet. Today we're sharing the very first craft, our simple yet adorable little Ants on an Apple created almost completely by her, with guidance by me.



For you and your toddler to enjoy this little learning activity you will need:

Crayons, Paper, Black circle stickers (or just use construction paper in the shape of circles and glue)



To make this simple project: You'll either draw a simple apple & leaf yourself and encourage your toddler to color it in OR ask your toddler to create the apple & leaf herself. Delainey did this herself, then I created an outline for her afterward. As we were scribbling her apple we were discussing the colors she was using as well as the shapes she was drawing - it's amazing how much she wants to learn, with nearly everything she is now asking "what's this?"... and now she's also started to quiz me on colors and shapes - which is equally fun & adorable.

Once her apple was colored in some, we decided to start adding ants into the equation. If you know Delainey, you know she loves seeing creepy crawly ants so this craft was a dream come true for her. For this step, we simply used black circle stickers and placed them together in groups of 3 onto the paper. Then she scribbled some little legs on each ant, I added an uppercase and lowercase "A" on each side of her creations and we kept discussing all the "A" words I could think of!




That's it - now you have a precious little "A" craft!

Next up, we'll be sharing our silly yet fun birdhouse craft we made!