Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Packing Lunch for Little Ones!

My daughter starts preschool next week, and this means I will be packing a lunch for her three times a week. (Her wonderful preschool includes lunchtime!)
No big deal, right?

Well, I am a little nervous about running out of ideas and being “that parent” who packs the same thing every day, especially since it is a peanut-free school. (No peanut butter?!?! What will my daughter eat?!?!)

Luckily, there are so many wonderful resources on the Internet to help you when making lunch for your kids this year. Here are some alternatives to the ho-hum turkey and cheese sandwich that are both healthy and delicious!

- Cream cheese “tea sandwich”
- Roll-ups (deli slice of ham or turkey with cheese rolled up together)
- Whole grain bagel with cream cheese
- Pasta salad
- Fruit salad
- Baby carrots with vegetable dip
- Vegetable soup (in an insulated thermos or container)
- Granola
- Mini-muffins
- Hummus with baked tortilla chips or vegetables
- Dried fruit bars
- Hard-boiled eggs
- Cheese cubes
- Ham and cream cheese pinwheel sandwiches
- Fruit kabobs (make sure the stick holding the fruit together is not too pointy)

(Also parents…this article on back-to-school lunch and snacks is a must-read. I can’t believe 98 percent of children fail to meet the five core food groups each day. Yowza!)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Clearance Sale- Don't Miss It!

Pure and Honest Kids is having its best sale of the year...the clearance sale! From now until August 29, you can take an additional 30 percent off all clearance sale items. Just use the code BIGSALE when you check out.

Clearance sale items are up to 80 percent off. These deals won't last long, so check it out today! Happy shopping!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Empty Threats?!?!

I recently read an article on a website called "Mom Logic" about a mother who gave her son an empty threat while on an airplane. She basically said, "If you don't stay seated and calm down, I'm going to ring the flight attendant's call button and get the flight attendant to take you away."

Okay parents...confession time! How many of you out there have given an empty threat to your kids? Have you ever threatened something you knew you could never follow through with? (I am raising my hand over here, too!) Why do parents do this?

I think we get so flustered and stressed sometimes that we say things we don't mean or that will never come to fruition in hopes of stopping an unfavorable behavior.

Here are a few examples of empty threats parents may sometimes give their children:

- "If you don't hurry up and get ready for school, I'm going to leave you." (Hello, child services! You can't actually leave your young child alone.)

- "If you don't pick up your toys, I am going to give them all to goodwill." (Seriously?)

- "If you don't stop throwing the ball at your brother, I'm going to throw your ball away in the trash can." (Most parents would not want to deal with the meltdown that would occur from actually throwing the ball away in the trash can. By the way, this one happened at my house recently. My husband said it and I suggested he follow through with it. It wasn't pretty.)

A parent that makes these kinds of threats has lost control and their children are winning! Kids are perceptive. They quickly begin to understand that you are not going to follow through with your threat, so why should they modify their behavior?

When you make ultimatums that you cannot carry through with, you undermine your authority as a parent. So next time you are trying to discipline your child, remember you are in control! Make discipline choices that fit the crime and that you can actually follow through with.

You are the parent...you are in control. You are the parent...you are in control. Keep chanting this to yourself until you actually believe it!

Have you given a funny empty threat lately? Leave it in the comment section below.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Too Hot, Too Fast: Signs your Kids Could Be Dehydrated

Where we live, it is hotter than hot this summer. When I walk outside, I am full-on sweating before I even reach my car. My almost four year-old, who usually does not complain about rain, sleet, snow or heat, even said to me today, “Mommy, it’s too hot to play outside today.”

The summer sun can be ruthless, so it’s important to recognize the early signs of dehydration and other heat-related illnesses. Children are particularly vulnerable to heat-related illnesses, because their bodies do not get rid of heat as efficiently as adults' bodies do. Check out these tips below on how to keep your kids from reaching the point of too much sun, and not enough water.

- When kids begin to complain with thirst or feeling hot while playing outside, or just seem irritable in the heat, they may have early dehydration. Get them out of the sun immediately and find a cool spot to sit and relax. Push fluids as well (water or sports drinks with electrolytes are best.)

- If you know your child has been outside in the heat and is experiencing one or more of the following symptoms, seek medical attention as soon as possible: few or no tears when crying, eyes that look sunken in the head, lack of urine or wet diapers, headache, extreme fatigue, dizziness or altered mental state.

- Encourage your child to drink water before, during and after outside activities when it is a hot day.

- Avoid giving your kids fruit juices, sodas and other caffeinated beverages when playing outside in the heat. These types of drinks can actually make dehydration occur more quickly.

- Find shady spots outside to take breaks from playing. Have your kids drink fluids every 20-30 minutes, or even more often if they ask for it.

- When playing in the heat, dress your children in loose, light colored clothing.

- Whatever you do, do not leave your children alone in a hot car, even for a few minutes.

Play it safe in the sun by staying cool and hydrated the rest of the summer!