via Courtney Allison: In this video, Allison will talk about being an introverted mom and some introvert struggles that she have dealt with since becoming a mom. Allison also talk about some tips for coping with introvert problems and the difference between extroverts and introverts.
Are you planning for a holiday trip with your kids any time soon? Traveling with kids can sometimes be stressful and challenging, especially when you have kids of different ages.
Our MAma – Hani from Energise Kids will be sharing with you some of the practical tips that would help you out for an effective holiday trip planning for you and your kids!
Watch the video now!
via Health Chronicle:
Mark Twain once said, “Humanity has unquestionably one really effective weapon—laughter. Power, money, persuasion, supplication, persecution—these can lift at a colossal humbug—push it a little—weaken it a little, century by century, but only laughter can blow it to rags and atoms at a blast. Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand.” Twain was right, except he forgot to mention laughter’s ability to profoundly affect our health.
Laughter is the best medicine for many scientifically proven reasons:
1. Laughter is one of the best stress relievers. A good bout of laughter can keep the muscles in your entire body relaxed for up to 45 minutes. Now imagine cracking a few good jokes all day long. You’ll never have a crick in your neck or an aching back again.
2. Dr. Gulshan Sethi, a doctor of cardio-surgery at Tucson Medical Center says that laughter is like internal jogging. It tones all the internal organs and strengthens the abdominals without ever doing a single sit-up.
3. Laughter induces better social relations. The contagious nature of a smile or a good laugh help us to connect with others leading to friendships and even romantic closeness. In fact, couples who laugh together are more likely to stay married longer. People who have enduring relationships have also proven to outlive those who have few friends and are unmarried.
4. Laughter boosts our body’s immune response. Studies have found that laughing at a funny movie or finding humor in a stressful situation helps to increase the production of natural killer cells – white blood cells that attack cancer, colds, and foreign bacteria.
5. Laughter combats depression. When we laugh our bodies dump a bunch of good neuropeptides into our blood stream including oxytocin and dopamine.
6. Laughter reduces physical pain. Perceived pain levels in participants of many different studies are lowered when they laugh. Life may cause us pain here and there, but laughter helps us to deal with it better.
7. Finally, laughter is a measurable trait found to be higher in those who are more resilient. If you want to find a successful person who can take the punches of life just as easily as the accolades, you’ll find someone who laughs a lot. Laughter builds character and lessens rigidity.
via ARTiculations: Do you struggle with talking to children about art? Well – there are definitely challenges but talking to kids about art can also be a really fun and educational experience for everyone. And once you get the hang of it, it’s easy!
via firstcryparenting: A woman’s diet during pregnancy is of utmost importance as it not only gives energy to the mother but also the baby. As it is the only source of nourishment for the growing foetus, the diet of a woman needs to be well balanced. Care should be taken to include only those items that will not harm the mother and the baby.
Is Eating Spicy Food Safe During Pregnancy
Spicy food does not affect the baby or the pregnancy. However, consuming more spicy food than what your body can bear, creates digestion, acidity and heartburn related problems.
Spicy Food During First Trimester
Consuming spicy food in the first trimester is safe and does not affect the development of the baby. The risk of early pregnancy loss is high in the first trimester, and this worries expecting mothers about side effects of consuming spicy food.
Spicy Food During Second & Third Trimester
Consumption of spicy food during second & third trimester increases the chances of experiencing heartburn and acid reflux. In the third trimester, the growing foetus causes stomach acids to revert to the oesophagus and eating spicy foods could aggravate this condition.
How Much Of Spicy Is Good?
As long as your body can digest all those spices, it is safe to consume spicy food in limited quantities. Avoid eating spicy food outside. Instead, buy fresh spices and grind these spices at home.
What Are The Risks & Side Effects Of Eating Spicy Food?
Eating spicy food can cause digestion problems leading to discomfort in a pregnant woman. Listed below are the risks and side effects of eating spicy food during pregnancy:
- Morning Sickness: Morning sickness is very common in the early stages of pregnancy due to changing hormonal levels. Morning sickness can be aggravated by consumption of spicy food.
- Heartburn: The chances of experiencing heartburn and other digestive issues are high when you are pregnant. Spicy food will increase acid reflux and aggravate heartburn, especially in the late months of pregnancy.
If you decide to eat spicy food, pair it with a glass of milk to minimize heartburn. Honey can also help to prevent heartburn after eating a spicy dish.
Myths About Eating Spicy Food When Pregnant
There are myths attached to eating spicy food during pregnancy. Myths without any scientific backing include:
- Spicy food can have an adverse impact on your baby is a myth.
- Another myth regarding consumption of spicy food is that it can lead to pre-term labour.
- Consumption of spicy foods during pregnancy can lead to miscarriage and congenital disabilities are yet another myth without any scientific proof.
Alternatives To Spicy Foods
You can try different cuisines and dishes which are naturally spicy and tangy. Limit consumption of spicy food to moderate levels to avoid heartburn and digestion problems.
- Limit spicy dish to one per meal and change your cuisine if spicy Indian cuisine gives you heartburn.
- Thai and Mexican cuisines have spice in the form of jalapenos, chilli flakes and oregano which are much milder than spice in Indian food and hence can be a worthy alternative.
- Give preference to home cooked food as you can regulate the quality and quantity of spices used in food.
Tips To Take Spicy Food In Right Manner
To make sure that you are not adversely affected by the dangers of spicy food, you must consume them in a proper manner.
- Consume spices which are branded and approved by food certification authorities.
- Do not consume spices which are sold loose as they may be impurities such as brick powder.
- If you are consuming new spices, start by taking in small quantities. It is best to buy fresh spices and grind them at home.
- Check packaging and expiry dates before buying spices from outside.
How Can You Include Spicy Food In Your Diet?
You should be cautious and selective while consuming spicy food during pregnancy. Some of the spicy food items that can be included in your diet are as follows:
- Wasabi Peas: These are hot and crunchy peas which are safe to eat and cause no harm.
- Curry Sauce: A blend of onion, garlic, chilli and all common spices, curry sauce is widely used in Indian food and is safe to consume.
- Piri-piri Sauce: It is a blend of onion, garlic, tomato and the main ingredient ‘super-hot’ African bird’s eye chilli.
- Middle Eastern Cooking Sauces: Sweet sauces made of black onion seeds, green chillies and tomato coriander.
Spicy Pickles: Available at any convenient store, small amounts of these pickles alongside your food is safe and can satiate your craving for spices.
Pepper: One can try out pepper based soups whenever you have a cold due to low immunity. The anti-bacterial properties of pepper along with its spicy effect make it an ideal spice during pregnancy.
via The New Age Parents: As a species, we require human touch to survive and thrive. Our skin is the largest organ and physical contact distinguishes us from other animals. For young babies, the role of affectionate touch is even more important as it has a direct impact on their physical and psychological development. The benefits of human touch extend through to childhood, and can impact a child’s cognitive and emotional development.
Our children need our affection – in big bear hugs and passing ruffles of the hair, in sought-after treasures wrapped in pretty paper and time spent playing “horsies” around the house. In Gary Chapman’s book “The five love languages of children”, he describes five ways a parent can show a child love – words of affirmation, time, acts of service, gifts and physical touch.
In a predominantly Asian society like ours, we do not readily show affection to the ones we love, especially in public. We are generally a lot less expressive than our Western counterparts, even when it comes to our own family. Very likely, our own parents were not models of physical affection and did not hug us or say “I love you” a whole lot during our growing up years.
Yet research clearly indicates that children thrive in environments where they not only know they are loved – they feel it as well.
The power of hugs cannot be underestimated. Dr Natalie Epton, Specialist Paediatrician and Neonatologist explains, “Hugging your baby has numerous benefits, including better-regulated breathing and heart rate, temperature and blood sugar levels, as well as initiating breastfeeding earlier and sustaining it for longer. Studies on premature babies show that the practice of ‘kangaroo care’ (cuddling the baby skin-on-skin) improves weight gain, reduces breathing complications and is associated with earlier hospital discharge.”
Here are 10 reasons that we hope will compel you to hug your children at least once every single day!
1. Hugging helps our children feel safe & secure
Children need the loving affection of their parents to feel emotionally secure, and to know that they are unconditionally accepted into the family. The physical intimacy of a hug builds trust and a deep sense of safety in our children, which frees them up to enjoy the world around them. This security also increases their openness to learn new things and paves the way for open and honest communication.
2. Hugging helps our children to have a healthy self-esteem
Our love and care give our children a strong foundation of self-confidence that helps them to view themselves positively and to try new things, knowing that our love for them is unchanging. We can boost our child’s confidence tremendously with a simple hug, empowering him to fully engage with the world out there. We can see ourselves as a “home-base” for our child to return to every time he needs a refuge from the “real world” – and recognize that he will need this, need us, less and less as he grows and matures.
3. Hugging lets them know we understand how they feel
Young children, and even older ones, may find it hard to express how they are feeling. Babies can often be frightened by anything that is new or different, even if there is no real danger. Instead of laughing it off, or telling them “Don’t be silly!”, offering them a hug can be the best way to assure them that their feelings matter, and that they can trust you to give them the comfort they need.
4. Hugging helps our children to take discipline better
When our children misbehave, our gut instinct is normally to give them a smack, not a hug. However, hugs can create a reassuring atmosphere that is more conducive for that firm talk with your child. A hug says “I will always love you, but I need to talk to you about your behavior.” Children are more willing to listen to what you have to say or expect when they feel better, so encourage them with a hug, and you just might notice their behavior improving!
5. Hugging makes our children feel happy
Did you know, that a long hug can lift a person’s serotonin levels, elevating his mood and creating happiness? Our hugs are the antidote for feelings of loneliness, isolation and anger, which our children may encounter. Let’s not be so quick to let go!
6. Hugging strengthens the immune system
Yes, it’s medically proven that hugging is great for boosting immunity. The gentle pressure on the sternum and the emotional charge this creates stimulates the thymus gland, which regulates and balances the body’s production of white blood cells, and this, in turn, helps to keep you healthy and disease free
7. Hugging reduces stress
It’s also medically proven that children with more skin-to-skin contact with their parents from birth have lower levels of cortisol, a stress hormone. This is why parents of premature infants are often encouraged to spend time holding their offspring in the hospital intensive care unit, as it is shown to help boost these babies’ vital signs.
8. Hugging relaxes muscles
When we hug, we can feel the tension in ourselves and in the other person literally melt away. Hugs may not be able to take away our emotional pain, but they can definitely help to alleviate it; hugs tangibly soothe body aches by increasing circulation into the soft tissues.
9. Hugging teaches our children how to give and receive
Sometimes, our children might not want to be hugged. Don’t force them to reciprocate, but don’t give up hugging them either! Our children learn not just the warmth of receiving a hug, they will begin to understand the need to show love to others by giving hugs of their own too. Hugs educate our children on how love is a two-way street.
10. Hugging helps us and our children get connected to how we are feeling on the inside
When we hug our children, time stops for that moment. A hug allows us to let go and be completely present in that moment; it us connect to how we are feeling, emotionally and physiologically. And with that awareness, it helps us to empathize with each other a little better.
Have you hugged your child today? We hope this article will encourage you to make big bear hugs a daily affair for your household!
In fact, why wait? Go give your child a hug right now!
Via Jodi Aman:
Sometimes when teens are starting to have their independence, they get a little bit overwhelmed with obligation and responsibility. And they’re highly motivated to resist those things.
These are some things that you have to do to get your child motivated. First, have some confidence in them. You have to believe that they can do it so that they can believe that they can do it. Two, you’ve got to be the bridge. They have to start to do stuff for themselves, but you have to be the bridge and encourage them. The third is to teach them that responsibility equals freedom. The more responsible they act the more that they could ask for from you.
The next thing is sleep schedule. Have them sleep at night instead of during the day. If they’re up during the day, everybody’s up and moving and they feel like part of the world. The next thing is the “carrot”, having something that would motivate them. You have to give them something that’s important enough to supersede that “I don’t care”. The last thing is to make little goals instead of big goals. Give your teen little goals that they could accomplish and feel that sense of accomplishment.
Get that teen up and moving and live a happier and healthier life.
via Child Development: The term “sibling” refers to children who are related and living in the same family. Sibling rivalry has occurred as long as families have existed. Think back to biblical times and Joseph’s problems with his brothers or of Disney’s “Cinderella” and the dreadful experience she had with her step-sisters!
It seems strange that whenever the word “sibling” comes up, “rivalry” seems sure to follow, despite the fact that there are many solid sibling relationships in families (brothers and sisters who genuinely like and enjoy one another). However, it’s typically rivalry that gets the most attention.
What causes sibling rivalry? Think about it. Siblings don’t choose the family they are born into, nor do they choose each other. They may be of different genders, probably of different ages and temperaments, and worst of all, they have to share the one or two people they want most for themselves: their parents. Other factors which may cause sibling rivalry include:
- Position in the family. For example, the oldest child may be burdened with responsibilities for the younger children or the younger child spends his life trying to catch up with an older sibling.
- Gender. For instance, a son may resent his sister because his father seems more gentle with her. On the other hand, a daughter may wish she could go on the fishing trip with her father and brother.
- Age. A five and an eight-year-old can play some games together but when they become ten and thirteen, they will likely have very different interests.
The most important factor, however, is a parent’s attitude. Parents have been taught that they must be impartial with their kids, but this can be extremely difficult. It’s inevitable that parents will feel differently about children who have their own personalities with varying needs, dispositions, and places in the family. Picture the age-old conflict of the young child whining: “It’s not fair. Why can’t I stay up until nine-thirty like Johnny?” Fairness has nothing to do with it. Susie is younger and needs more sleep. It’s as simple as that, and parents are advised never to give in to the old “it’s not fair” strategy. Besides, when Susie is finally allowed to stay up until nine-thirty, it will feel like a privilege to her.
Many parents feel that in order to be fair, they must treat their children equally. It’s simply not possible, and can be dehumanizing if a mother feels that when she hugs one child, she must stop and hug all of her children. Hugs will eventually become somewhat meaningless in that family. When Susie has a birthday or is ill, she is the one who merits the special attention and presents. You can be sure that no matter what they may say, the other children in the family recognize the inherent “fairness” of the situation.
Ever since we decided that sibling rivalry is a normal occurrence in a family system, we’ve had a terrible time figuring out what to do about it. Here are some do’s and don’ts that may be helpful in reducing conflicts as well as the negative effects of sibling rivalry:
- Don’t make comparisons (e.g., “I don’t understand it. When Johnny was his age, he could already tie his shoes.”). Each child feels he is unique and rightly so; he is his own person and resents being evaluated only in relation to someone else. Instead of comparison, each child in the family should be given his own goals and levels of expectation that relate only to him.
- Don’t dismiss or suppress your children’s resentment or angry feelings. Contrary to what many people think, anger is not something we should try to avoid at all costs. It’s an entirely normal part of being human, and it’s certainly normal for siblings to get angry with each other and have the impulse to physically fight. They need the adults in their lives to assure them that mothers and fathers get angry too, but have learned self-control and that angry feelings do not give license to behave in cruel and dangerous ways. This is the time to sit down, acknowledge the anger (e.g., “I know you hate David right now but you cannot hit him with a stick.”), and talk it through.
- Try to avoid situations that promote guilt in siblings. First, we must teach children that feelings and actions are not synonymous. It may be normal to want to hit the baby on the head, but parents must stop a child from doing it. The guilt that follows doing something mean is a lot worse than the guilt of merely feeling mean. In situations like this, parental intervention must be quick and decisive.
- Whenever possible, let brothers and sisters settle their own differences. While it may sound good, it can be terribly unfair in practice. Parents have to judge when it’s time to step in and mediate, especially in a contest of unequals in terms of strength and eloquence (no hitting below the belt, literally or figuratively). Some long-lasting grudges among grown siblings have resulted when their minority rights were not protected.
When One Sibling is Disabled
Quite different considerations must come into play when there is a disabled child in the family, especially if it’s a child who requires a lot of extra support both in and out of the home. In this case, non-disabled siblings can be resentful of the time spent on their brother or sister; they sense the parent’s preoccupation. They often feel they are receiving only “surface attention,” and that the parent is not really alert to their needs.
There is one critical point that should be made and emphasized in all such cases. Whatever time and effort are spent with the disabled child, it’s done with the goal of improvement: making the child better able to function independently over time. As he improves his skills, the demands on his parents will decrease commensurately, freeing them to devote more time to other members of the family. It actually boils down to, “Come on, let’s everyone help, and ultimately everyone will benefit.”
There are other measures to be taken to lessen sibling rivalry and tension in families with a disabled child. Every child deserves a certain amount of quality time with a parent. It needn’t be long but it should be undivided. Maybe a short quiet chat before bedtime, or lunch at a special restaurant. Additionally, when one of the non-disabled siblings is involved in a school or community function, the parents should make every effort to be there, no matter how much advance planning is required. Should the disabled child go, too? Take your cue from the child who is involved in the function — it’s his night. Sometimes yes. Sometimes no.
When One Sibling Is Gifted
Different people, including gifted children, have abilities and talents in different areas. Talk openly about this reality with your children so they can begin to develop appropriate expectations for themselves. You can do this by comparing your own strengths with those of your husband/wife or other family members or friends. There are two important points to be emphasized:
- Don’t expect to be great in everything.
- Recognize and develop those areas of strength you do have. Help your children make similar comparisons among themselves in the hope that they will have a greater understanding and respect for each other (e.g., “My brother gets all A’s in school but he can’t hit a baseball.”).
It’s also okay to mention your weaknesses. This can be especially effective if there is something you don’t do as well as your non-gifted child (e.g.,”I wish I could make brownies as well as yours.”).
Above all, honesty and acceptance are the greatest consideration you can give your children when the ways in which they are like and unlike one another come up in discussion.
Some Useful Sibling Conflict Resolution Strategies
Common Mistakes Parents Make in Managing Sibling Rivalry
- Taking sides, such as attempting to punish the child who is at fault, (usually the one seen pounding on the other child). How long has this child put up with the taunting of the other child before taking drastic measures?
- Ignoring appropriate behavior. Parents often ignore their children when they are playing nicely. They only pay attention when a problem arises. Behavior Mod 101 teaches that behaviors that are ignored (go unrewarded) decrease while behaviors that receive attention (are rewarded) increase.
Simple Parenting Techniques That Work
1. When the sibling rivalry progresses to excessive physical or verbal violence OR when the number of incidents of rivalry becomes excessive, take action. (Action does speak louder than words). Talk with your children about what is going on. Provide suggestions on how they can handle the situation when it occurs, such as:
- Ignoring the teasing.
- Simply agreeing (in a kidding way) that whatever the teaser is saying is true.
- Telling the teaser that enough is enough.
- When these measures aren’t working, ask the person in charge (parent, babysitter) for help.
2. When the above does not work, introduce a family plan to help with the situation that provides negative and positive consequences for all concerned, such as:
- When there is any fighting or shouting, all involved will have a consequence such as a timeout or the temporary removal of screentime.
- However, when we can go the whole day or afternoon or evening (whatever makes sense for your situation) without fighting, everyone will earn a privilege such as (1) you can have a snack, (2) I will read you a story, (3) we will all play a game together, (4) I will play outside with you (catch, etc.) or (5) you can stay up later. (Note that several of these provide parental attention for appropriate behavior).
3. Develop a system for evenly distributing coveted privileges. In other words, a system for taking turns for such things as:
- Who gets to ride “shotgun” in the car. (It’s amazing how many teenagers and young adult siblings still make this an important issue).
- Who gets to push the button in the elevator.
- Who gets to choose where to go to eat lunch or dinner.
- Who gets to chose the television show.
- Who does the dishes or takes out the trash (rotate on a weekly or monthly basis).
For more parenting techniques visit Parenting 101. For help in improving your ability to cope with the rigors of parenting, we suggest Stress Management For Parents.
Yes, siblings can create certain stresses, but if they are overcome successfully, they will give your children resources that will serve them well later in life. Siblings learn how to share, how to come face to face with jealousy, and how to accept their individual strengths and weaknesses.
Best of all, as they watch you handle sibling rivalry with equanimity and fairness, they will be gaining knowledge that will be valuable when they, too, become parents.
via familyvacationcritic: With so many size restrictions and federal regulations, what we can bring on a plane is confusing enough, aside from worrying about the right gear to bring for kids. Here’s a guide for what to pack in a carry-on bag for the kids.
What to Pack in a Carry-On Bag
Every person with a seat gets one carry-on bag, while mom and dad also get to bring one laptop bag, one purse, or one diaper bag. Now, what do you bring?
For Infants. Pack your standard diaper bag complete with all the items you pack up for an outing: diapers, a changing pad, wipes, diaper cream, plastic bags for soiled clothes, blankets, tissues, pacifiers, teeth toys, extra change of clothes (two, just to be safe), a hat to keep baby’s head warm when the plane gets cold, bibs, bottles, breastmilk or formula, nursing pads for mom, baby food, infant feeding set, snacks, and a few of baby’s favorite toys. If your baby has any medications or you’re concerned about illness, bring medicines in your carry-on bag for the kids, including infant pain and fever reducers, teething relief and gas relief.
For Toddlers. Pack a backpack (preferably one your toddler can carry) with your essentials, as well as toys, including a change of clothes for an accident, diapers or pull-ups, plastic bags for soiled clothes, diaper cream, snacks (plenty if the flight is long and your child won’t eat the meal served), drinks purchased after security, small books, favorite toys and your child’s “lovey” that helps them keep calm and sleep. Stash a small first aid kit with bandages, motion sickness relief, fever reducers, pain reducers and any prescribed medications in this carry-on, or your own.
For School-Aged Kids. At this age, kids can definitely carry their own backpack or rollaway carry-on. Put your cell phone number and your name somewhere visible on the outside of the backpack, in case you become separated. Inside the backpack, allow your child to bring some favorite toys, such as crafts, video games and books to keep him occupied on the plane. Pack a sweater in case the flight gets chilly. Bring some snacks and purchase some beverages after security, as well as gum to help reduce ear pressure. Stash a small first aid kit with bandages, motion sickness relief, fever reducers, pain reducers and any prescribed medications in this carry-on, or your own.
For Teens. Teens can and will pack a carry-on for themselves, but be sure to make sure the essentials are there, and that the rule-breakers are not. Teens should have their IDs and passports on them, and their wallets with cash. Let them carry their own ticket and have a copy of the itinerary, in the event you get separated, as well as their cell phone. Put a copy of your insurance information in your teen’s carry-on as well. Teens should also carry their own prescribed medicines, but have on hand aspirin and other basics in case they need it. Glasses and/or a spare set of contacts should also be carried on.
For Yourself. Be sure you have a bag with your wallet, IDs, passport, credit cards, at least some small cash, tickets, itineraries, insurance information, membership cards, prescription medicines, glasses and/or a spare set of contacts, jewelry, camera, cell phone, charger, book/magazine, laptop and charger, and anything you couldn’t bear to lose if your luggage is lost. If you’re traveling with an infant or small child, you may want to bring a change of clothes, or at least a shirt, in the event of a spit up or accident.
For more ideas on what to pack the kids in a carry-on bag, be sure to check out our interactive family packing list.
What You Are Allowed to Bring In a Carry-On
Different airlines have different size standards they permit as a carry-on, and more and more airlines are grabbing passengers’ carry-ons at the gate for being too large or when the overhead bulkhead is full (a common occurrence in winter, when everyone has coats and extra gear). Some airlines are beginning to charge an extra fee if your carry-on gets gate checked. A good rule of thumb: Keep the carry-on size small enough to fit under the seat in front of you. As long as it’s that small, and you do not mind losing the legroom, you will always be able to bring the carry-on with you.
The 3-1-1 rule still applies for all carry-on baggage. This TSA regulation states that you cannot bring any liquid or gel that’s more than three ounces, and you are permitted one quart-sized clear, zip-lock baggie per person in which to store them. Parents traveling with infants are permitted to break the three-ounce rule when packing breastmilk, formula and baby food, but remove them from your carry-on before going through security, and alert security personnel.
Due to the 3-1-1 rule, it’s best not to bring any juice, water or other items you may typically have on hand for the tots. Instead, purchase the items once you are through security, and store them in your carry-on to have them handy for thirsty kids who are impatient for beverage service.
Infant carriers, car seats and strollers can be brought through security to make traveling with small children less taxing at the airport. It is recommended that although infants and children under 2 can be held in the lap of a parent, a separate seat be purchased for the child and the infant carrier or a car seat be installed in the seat to keep the child secure during take-off, landing and during the flight. Strollers will have to be gate checked, but if you have a family of four traveling through the airport, it may make it easier to maneuver through an airport if holding a young child and a few carry-on pieces.
That said, you may find it more cumbersome to travel with bulky gear and prefer to check strollers and car seats. Better yet, rent these items at your final destination. Rental car companies provide car seats with advanced reservations, and some companies partner with hotels to provide stroller and car seat rentals. Inquire ahead and avoid the extra trouble when you can.
via njfamily: It’s winter… which means you probably spend 20 minutes in the morning searching for the left mitten that’s lost in a snowdrift somewhere. Here are tips to keep them from getting separated.
One easy solution is to buy those handy little clips, where one end clips to their jacket and the other to the mittens. More precocious kids may pull them off, but its a good option for babies and toddlers. These are surprisingly hard to find once the snow starts falling, so check amazon for the best variety.
All you need is a long piece of string (twine, ribbon, yarn) that you match to the length of your kid’s wingspan. Tie the string to both mittens (you may need to make a small hole and a knot, but it is worth it in the long run). Then run one mitten and the string through both sleeves of the coat. The mittens will then just hang out the bottom of the sleeves and you’ll save your sanity.
Grab some adhesive Velcro and cut a piece as long as the cuff of her jacket. Then separate (aka un-velcro) the halves, remove the adhesive backing and stick one piece to the outside of his jacket cuff. Then press firmly. Next, turn his mitten inside out and press the other piece to the inside of the mitten cuff. When you velcro the pieces together, they’ll create an extra barrier against snow, as well as increase his chances of returning home with a complete pair. Check out motherhood.modernmom.com for more detailed instructions.
Buy Multiple Pairs
If you’ve got a favorite pair of gloves or mittens you like, buy two pairs, so they can be mixed or matched as needed. It will cost you a little more at the outset, but save you a headache in the long run. As an alternative, Lands End will actually sell you a single kids glove throughout the season if you lose one of your pair.
Keep a Stash of Stretchy Gloves
Those little stretchy gloves aren’t the warmest outerwear you can buy, but for a dollar most places, you can stockpile a bunch of them and keep them handy as a backup for when your kid inevitably loses their “good” gloves. The best part is that they can fit many sizes, great if you lose your own gloves. Check dollar stores and the dollar bin at Target, they always seem to have them there.
Put Them in the Sleeve
It’s a simple fix, but if you put the gloves inside the hat and stuff them all in the sleeve of a coat, they should actually be there when you get back. Not ideal for wet items, but works well, especially at crowded places like schools.
Buttons and Elastic
If you can sew, try a more permanent solution. Stitch a piece of elastic to the inside of the coat sleeve. Then attach a button to the edge of the mitten. Cut a small hole in the elastic (just about the size of the button), put the button through the hole and you’re ready to attach them together.