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Tips on talking to kids about scary news.

21 Apr

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With the recent horrific events occurring in our world, I thought I would write my blog about how to talk to your children about scary news and media. The other day after the Boston Bombings, I heard someone talking about the media and how it is nearly impossible to shield your kids from seeing terribly sad news and photos. Obviously, when these things happen, you want to watch the news to find out what is happening. I know that from the time I heard of what occurred in Boston on Monday, from the time they caught the suspects, I was constantly on CNN and reading my phone for updates.  I felt like I couldn’t relax until I found out what was going on. This can be a problem when you have your kids around, or even if they just walk into the room while you quickly change the channel so they don’t see the terribly tragic images. Your little ones are smart and know when something is going on. It’s almost impossible to hide these awful tragedies from them, especially if they are a little older. It can get really tough answering their questions or telling them of these situations without scaring them or making them feel unsafe.  I found some great tips that you can use or modify in ways that you prefer.

Keep it black and white. Yes, the world can be a cruel place, but little kids, well, can’t handle the truth.”Younger kids need to be reassured that this isn’t happening to them and won’t happen to them,” says Dr. Coleman. Parents may feel like they’re lying, since no one can ever be 100% sure of what the future holds, but probability estimates are not something small kids can grasp, and won’t comfort them.

Ask questions. Don’t assume you know how they feel. Instead, get at their understanding of what happened. “They might be afraid — or just curious. You have to ascertain that by asking things like ‘What did you hear? What do you think?'” says Dr. Coleman. “If they are scared, ask what they’re afraid of – don’t assume you know. They could be using twisted logic, like they see a building collapse on TV and think it’s Mommy’s office building. Correct any misconceptions, and then offer assurance.”

Don’t label feelings as wrong. Let them know that their feelings make sense, and that it’s ok to feel whatever they’re feeling. Never make them feel bad about being scared.

Use it as a teaching moment. Talking about bad things can lead to discussions about how to help others, and gives parents an opportunity to model compassion. Talk about donating to a relief organization, or make the message even more personal. “You can say, ‘It makes me think of Mrs. Smith in a wheelchair down the road – maybe we should make her a pot roast,'” says Dr. Coleman.

When tragedy affects someone your kids know Sometimes tragedy strikes closer to home, and there’s no way to shield your kids. If you’re dealing with the death of a friend or family member, be truthful about it, but offer some separation between what happened and what they fear might happen. “Say ‘Grandma was very old and very sick, but I’m not,'” says Dr. Coleman. “Distinguish yourself clearly from that person so your child can rest comfortably knowing Mommy’s not going anywhere.”

Courtesy of cnn.com 🙂

Here is another good link that may help with ideas of how to talk to your kids also.

http://www.parenting.com/article/media-violence-children?src=syn&dom=cnnliving

I hope some of these help!

Thoughts and prayers for the victims, their families and our nation!

And to end with a phenomenal quote from the great, Mr. Rogers:

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xoxo, Erica ❤

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Improving Children’s Vocabulary

10 Apr

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Hey there! I found an excellent blog/ article about how to help improve your child’s vocabulary!  It offers great tips on how to teach kids in different ways.  Starting out young with your kids can really help them once they hit school and in everyday conversations.  Recently, the little guy I nanny for has learned a couple new words and has been interacting with us very differently, it is really impressive! Hope these tips help and give you new ideas that make learning new words fun!

http://prekandksharing.blogspot.com/2011/12/parents-can-improve-childrens.html

Have a great week!

<3Erica

Easy and Cheap Crafts for Kiddos

5 Apr

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The other day I was going through different blogs on Pinterest and found a great blog that has tons of cheap/some free crafts for kids.  I know with summer coming crafts are going to be a necessity for keeping your kids occupied AND keeping you sane.  This site really is awesome and it helps that majority of the materials used are everyday home supplies!  My favorite one is the toilet paper sheep. All of the art on her site is really creative and I would NEVER be able to think of the ideas she comes up with.  She also has fantastic ideas on how to preserve your kids artwork.  I know my mom still has a ton of my brother and I’s artwork back from when we were kids and birthday cards we made her, so these ideas are great for protecting and saving kids art!  Try some of these nifty crafts out 😉

Great site for crafts : ) http://www.redtedart.com/category/kids-craft/

Heres the link to preserving art!

http://www.redtedart.com/2013/02/27/kids-art-keepsakes-10-crafty-ideas-for-preserving-your-kids-art

 

Easter Goodies!

28 Mar

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Today I found some delicious recipes that I thought would be perfect for you guys to try out for Easter Sunday.  I know Zach and I’s families make good food and get together for a nice Easter lunch/dinner.  Most of the time we go to his aunts house and everyone from the family will bring something to take the pressure off pf her having to cook everything. I know hosting can be stressful sometimes so I figured you all could make some easy recipes to bring to a get together or for your own parties!  Most of these recipes can be used for any sort of get together! Enjoy and have a great weekend! 🙂 

http://keepitskinny.wordpress.com/2012/02/01/baked-chicken-taquitos/ ( these are awesome taquitos and are a healthier alternative! ) 

 

http://keepitskinny.wordpress.com/2011/12/14/balsamic-honey-pulled-pork-sliders/ ( you can NEVER go wrong with pork bbq!  Zach makes the most amazing pork ever and we are smoking it on Saturday, I am so excited. I will post his recipe soon as well! This recipe I posted seems to take a little bit longer for prep but looks delicious! ) 

 

http://www.couponingncooking.com/2013/03/easter-cake-mix-cookies-with-cheesecake.html ( this is an easy and delicious little Easter treat) 

 

http://lifesprinkledwithglitter.blogspot.com/2012/03/diy-reeses-peanut-butter-eggs-options.html ( This looks sooo good! I may try these ones out this weekend! ) 

 

http://www.skiptomylou.org/2009/12/28/easy-appetizers/ ( this site has a couple easy appetizers as well! 

 

Enjoy ! 

 

❤ Erica

Spring Break Activities

21 Mar

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It is now officially spring time, which means spring break is starting for some schools! I know all the little kids and even middle and high school kids are excited about that! I know my mom and brothers spring break starts tomorrow and they are very happy. Since it is so cold here in Virginia,  we were talking about some fun things they can do over break.  Since we are so close to D.C., they are going go to the zoo with the kids I nanny for and I!  We are hoping for a nice warm day, if not, we will just bundle up and walk around to see the little animals! Another thing they are going to do is go to sight see in D.C. I know that may sound silly since we live so close, but Kate and I were talking today and we really never take the chance the go visit the cool historic things that D.C. offers, it’s really silly.  So we are going to take this opportunity and visit the monuments and such! Now, if you don’t live in the area there are tons of other activities you can do with your younger kids and even the teenagers. If you have a zoo available in the area that is always fun. Also, going to some museums or libraries. Some libraries offer fun things during spring and summer breaks for younger children and they will definitely enjoy it.  Another fun thing to do on a rainy or cold day is go see a movie, I have heard great things about The Great And Powerful Oz and it looks to be kid friendly, don’t take my word for it though, please check the rating before you take your little ones! I also found some fun little home activities for you to do with your little kids for Easter bunnies in the link below!  

http://nurturestore.co.uk/easter-bunny-craft-2

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe Spring Break! 🙂 

xoxo- Erica

St. Patrick’s Day Activities

13 Mar

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As you all know, this Sunday is St. Patrick’s Day! You don’t have to be irish to celebrate either, so have fun with it! We all know it’s known for a fun night out, but it also can be really fun for kids.  As my brother and I grew up, my mom always made St. Patrick’s Day so much fun. She would dye our milk green, make green scrambled eggs,dye our hair green, knock things over in our house to make it look like a little Leprechaun came in our house to do some mischief, make us a delicious dinner of corn beef and cabbage, (which we will be having Sunday 😉 ) and bring us to the St. Patty’s Day parades. It was a blast and I will definitely be doing the same things for my kids. Since today is my “Friday”, the little boy I nanny for and I made Fun cards and hung them on the front door of his house and I also got him a yummy Shamrock cookie, which he loved. Any simple holiday can be a lot of fun for little ones so, in honor of St. Patty’s Day, I found some fun little activities for you to do with the kids!

St. Patrick’s Day Activities

Fun Hand Leprechaun

Hope you all have a fun St. Patrick’s Day and “May your blessings outnumber the shamrocks that grow and may trouble avoid you wherever you go.”

❤ Erica

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Kids and the Dentist!

27 Feb

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So, today I am going to tell you a funny little story about the 3 year old I nanny for.  He just recently had his first dentist appointment. The week leading up to to his appointment I was telling him how exciting the dentist is and how much fun he will have there. This is hilarious to me and anyone that knows me because I absolutely hate the dentist, with a passion… For some reason it really scares me and causes me to fret about it for weeks, which is totally ridiculous.  I actually recently started going to a dentist that doesn’t scare me half as bad, so this is good.
Anyways, the days leading up to his appointment, we were trying to explain to him that the dentist is going to check his teeth and such, so it wasn’t a shock to his system when he went.  We read the Berenstein Bears Going To The Dentist and really tried to make it fun for him… This did not work AT ALL. I wasn’t there, but his dad told me that it was quite a miserable experience. Apparently it was terrifying for little man, he didn’t like that he was supposed to keep his mouth open for someone he didn’t know to floss his teeth!  When I went to work on Monday he told me that he hated the dentist and that he cried, “so so bad Miss. Erica.” Apparently his dad had to hold him down for the dentist to get a quick look to make sure he didn’t have any cavities. Sounds pretty sad.. 😦 So needless to say… my plan to make it an exciting failed terribly.  I actually just found an awesome blog teaching kids about the dentist and why it is important to brush their teeth.  It has fun little activities and ways that may help them understand that the dentist isn’t always so bad… Maybe I should read it to lighten my anxiety as well… 😉 😉

Kids and the Dentist!

Hopefully this can help you all with your kids and the dentist!

❤ Erica