Michelle a.k.a ds_9723
Michelle LaRowe is the 2004 International Nanny Association Nanny of the Year and the author of the "Nanny to the Rescue!", "Working Mom's 411" and a "Mom's Ultimate Book of Lists." Michelle graduated from Bridgewater State College with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Chemistry and holds a Certificate in Pastoral Studies from Global University. To learn more about Michelle visit www.michellelarowe.com.
ds_9723 Author Alias
Bringing home your new baby introduces many changes to your household. If you'll soon be bringing home your first child and you're wondering how the dog will react, good. Now is the time to get your pup used to the idea that changes are brewing. Just like people, your dog has a routine, familiarity, and comfort level within your home. Helping to prepare your dog for the upcoming changes will facilitate a smooth transition. Here are some steps to get the pup ready for a new little brother or sister: Step 1
Preschoolers are full of creative energy. Father's Day provides an opportunity for them to harness their energy and create a handmade gift for their dad. With a little guidance and a few simple supplies, your preschooler can create an expression of love to give to his dad on Father's Day.
Help your child ring in the New Year by creating a New Year's-themed craft. Creating handmade New Year's crafts provide an opportunity for your child to learn about the holiday and have a hands-on part in the festivities. Since many New Year's crafts can double as holiday decorations or party favors, plan to make your crafts a few days before your New Year's celebration.
Do you get stressed out every October, trying to come up with the perfect Halloween costume for your little darling? Fear not! It doesn't have to be a daunting task. In fact there are tons of creative costumes that can be created in minutes using things you might already have laying around the house. So if you're a busy mom on a budget, here are four quick and easy Halloween costume ideas:
When you're little, play is one of those perfect things - a renewable resource of fun times, cut short only by sunlight and school. Just imagine if broccoli tasted good and chores were fun, and your daily chore was to eat broccoli. Just ask anyone, "Do you wish you had played less when you were a kid?" I think we all know the answer to that.
Although we don't really know for sure whether turkey was served at the Pilgrim's first Thanksgiving, the birds have become an important part of the modern Thanksgiving tradition. This year, add a decorative touch to your home and your holiday celebration with these fun and festive art projects that are perfect for preschoolers. Handprint Turkey In this classic craft, use cutouts of your preschoolers' hands and feet to make a Thanksgiving turkey.
If you're looking for a family activity this Memorial Day that will stimulate conversation, foster a spirit of cooperation, and teach family members how to win and lose gracefully, play a game together. Family-friendly games can promote a sense of unity and togetherness in a family. When choosing games to play, look for ones that are designed to be played by groups of people, have simple rules and are appropriate for all ages and skill levels.
If you are looking for something other than chocolate or flowers to give to those you love this Valentine's Day, you are in luck. Whether you are shopping for your spouse, a significant other or your children, you will be able to find something that most everyone will love. When choosing your Valentine's Day gifts, keeping your recipients' interests in mind can help you to choose the perfect gift.
If you always want to remember what your belly looked like while you were pregnant, consider making a pregnancy belly cast. A plaster cast of your baby bump will serve as a one-of-a-kind pregnancy memento. After your pregnancy belly cast is complete, you can decorate it and hang it on your baby-to-be's nursery wall or store it away to show your baby when he is older. Regardless of what you do with it, it will be a keepsake you will treasure.
Sending out pregnancy announcements is one way to let your friends and family know you are expecting an addition to your family. Once you have selected your pregnancy announcement card, adding customized wording will give it a personalized touch. Some expecting couples like to add a cute poem or riddle on the front of the announcement card and then write the actual pregnancy announcement on the inside. Selecting the proper wording for your pregnancy announcement will ensure you communicate your news clearly.
When it comes to getting your child to brush her teeth, the more fun brushing is, the more she will want to do it. With the wide range of kids' toothbrushes available, your child is likely to find one that she enjoys and looks forward to using on a daily basis. While there are many different types of children's toothbrushes available, most kids toothbrushes have smaller, tapered heads, soft bristles with rounded ends and easy-to-grip handles.
If your newborn suffers from daily bouts of inconsolable crying, he may be experiencing colic. Colic affects between 10 to 25 percent of newborn babies and usually hits hardest around a baby's sixth week of life. In addition to the sudden onset of crying, if your baby is colicky he may be gassy, spit up, pull his legs toward his chest or have a belly that feels hard to the touch. Fortunately for most babies, colic resolves on its own by the time the baby is 4 months old. Armed with a bit of information, you can prevent croup.
Years ago, washing your child's mouth out with soap for swearing was a common punishment. While in theory cleaning your child's mouth out with soap should send him the message that swearing is dirty or bad, in reality by putting soap into his mouth you are reinforcing the unacceptable behavior with another negative behavior. Fortunately, if your child has a problem with swearing, there are more positive and less invasive ways you can effectively nip it in the bud.
Little is more frustrating thing than paying someone to paint your nails, only to smudge them a few minutes after leaving the salon. Even if you paint your own nails, having to redo a smudged one can be a major inconvenience. Fortunately, you can speed up the nail drying process. And the faster your nails dry, the less likely you are to smudge them.
For your grandparents, learning that a fourth generation is being added to the family will likely be exciting news. While you can always call them and simply say ,"We're pregnant," news of this magnitude is best delivered with a little planning and preparation. Delivering the news in a planned and special way will also allow you to capture their response in photos or video. When your child is older, you will then have the opportunity to show him just how excited his great-grandparents were to learn he would be joining the family.
Taking your toddler's temperature can help you assess how sick he really is, but getting an accurate temperature on a sick toddler can be a challenging task. Chances are, when your toddler is sick he is going to resist poking and prodding. Trying to hold the thermometer in place while your toddler is wiggling about and crying is no fun. Fortunately, mercury thermometers have been replaced with digital thermometers that allow you to take even the squirmiest toddler's temperature quickly and safely.
You have to lose weight because you want to, not because someone else wants you to lose weight. The first step in helping your child to lose weight is to help him want to lose weight. Being positive, making lifestyle changes as a family and setting a goal to be healthy, rather than slim, are ways you can help cultivate a desire in your child to lose weight.
Little is more embarrassing for a parent then when your child bites another child. While your young baby may bite you, or anyone or anything within his reach as a means of exploring and discovering his world or to minimize teething pain, toddlers and preschoolers who bite often do so out of frustration and anger. While biting is not uncommon among children, after 18 months of age, it can become a serious problem if your child continues to bite. Fortunately, with your help, your child can stop biting.
It can be tempting to use a cotton swab to remove the wax from your child's ears, but don't. Doing so can cause damage to your child's ear canal or ear drum and push the ear wax into the ear even farther, which could result in a painful ear infection. If you are eager to clear your child's ear from wax, you can request an appointment with an ear, nose and throat specialist who can manually extract it or you can flush your child's ear out at home.
Nothing feels better than giving your feet a break after a long day and soaking your feet in Epsom salt has many health benefits. Epsom salt is made of magnesium sulfate. When absorbed through the skin, magnesium sulfate draws toxins out of the body, sedates the nervous system, reduces swelling and relaxes muscles. In addition to soothing sore and achy feet, Epsom salt can reduce foot inflammation, remove foot odors and soften rough skin on your feet. In fact, if you are having trouble removing a splinter from your foot, an Epsom salt foot soak can be effective in drawing it out.
When decorating a boy's room, it's super important to think about his interests, preferences and personal style. What you think will be the perfect room for your little boy may be totally different than he was hoping for. Working together to solidify your decorating plan can help ensure that you both end up with a room you are satisfied with. Here are some theme ideas to give your son's room a decorative (but not cluttered) pop.
Food is an integral part of Christmas celebrations for many families. In the days leading up to Christmas, chances are, you will be cooking up a storm. Getting your child involved with the cooking can provide him with an opportunity to play a hands-on role in preparing for the holiday celebrations.
While giving a baby loads of love is one of the most important things you can do to aid in her development, there are other things you can do to help with a baby's development. As a baby grows, she is developing new abilities, skills, preferences and interests. How you interact with and care for a baby can influence her development.
If your kids are older, you can say goodbye to crafts that only require paper and glue to complete. Since older children usually have the patience and fine motor skills to create more intricate winter crafts, craft projects can include cutting, beading and sanding. Creating a winter craft with your older child provides an opportunity for you to bond and to express your creativity together.
On Christmas Eve, if your children are off the wall with anticipation knowing that Santa is on his way, help them focus their energy by making a Christmas Eve craft. Doing a craft will provide your children with a creative outlet that will help ease their excitement, as well as provide you with an opportunity to create last-minute Christmas decorations or gifts.
If you are wondering if your child has autism, there are some steps you can take to find out. For children with autism, the earlier it is recognized and treated, the better. If you are worried your child may be affected by autism, delaying in having your child evaluated could prevent her from gaining access to the resources she needs. Children who get the proper assistance from the earliest age can gain skills to lead a successful life.
Learning when your baby is due is one of the most exciting moments of pregnancy. While a pregnancy due date calculator or ultrasound exam can be used to determine your estimated due date, if neither of those are readily available, you can use Nagele's rule to calculate when your baby is due. Using the rule developed in the 1850s by Dr. Nagele, you can accurately calculate your baby's estimated date of delivery.
Having your children make their own Easter cards will allow them to express their creativity as they express their care for others. Creating their own Easter cards will also provide them with an opportunity to learn about Easter, practice fine-motor skills and build language skills as they consider what special message to include on the card.
If you are looking for a twist on traditional meatballs in marinara sauce, meatballs in barbecue sauce may be just the solution. Inexpensive and easy to make, meatballs in barbecue sauce can be cooked to perfection in a slow cooker. You can literally set the timer and forget about the meatballs until they are done.
While store-bought Christmas decorations are nice, decorations your child makes by hand are priceless. With a few simple supplies, your child can create Christmas decorations that can be proudly displayed throughout your home. When choosing which holiday decorations to make with your child, remember his age and skill level will determine how much assistance he needs from you to complete the craft.
On the colder days when going outside isn't an option, consider creating winter-themed crafts with your preschooler. In addition to providing an avenue for your preschooler to learn about winter, making crafts provides an opportunity for him to use his creativity and hone his fine motor skills.
If you have ever thought that you've felt better after eating chocolate candy, chances are, you probably did. That's because eating chocolate triggers the release of feel-good hormones. If you like the feeling that you get from eating chocolate and you are an environmentalist at heart, making and eating your own organic candy may make you feel even better.
Decorating your baby's nursery is one of the pregnancy milestones that expecting parents look forward to. Creating the space that your soon-to-be baby will call her own takes careful planning and preparation. Since you and your baby will be spending lots of time in the nursery, creating a safe and soothing environment is essential.
Playing learning games with your preschoolers can help to teach new skills and concepts and review skills and concepts he has already learned. Depending on what you play, learning games for your preschooler can help her to learn and review numbers, letters, colors, shapes and the alphabet. They can also help to teach and review concepts like bigger and smaller and less and more. Playing learning games regularly with your preschooler can help her successfully prepare for school.
While after-school activities provide your child with an opportunity to relieve stress and have fun after the school day has ended, they do more than that. Participating in after-school activities not only lowers your child's risk of becoming depressed or engaging in risky behaviors, participation can also improve your child's attitude about learning, increase her academic performance and raise her self-esteem, according to Scholastic.com.
Keeping your child safe is a priority. Educating your child about basic safety rules is one way you can help keep your child safe. Explaining safety rules in age-appropriate terms, talking openly about the rules and having consequences for breaking the rules can help to reinforce them and the importance of following them.
Throwing a Valentine's Day party provides an opportunity for friends and family to gather together and celebrate the holiday. Creating Valentine's Day-themed foods, games and activities is fairly simple, given that almost anything heart-shaped, red and pink can be successfully incorporated into your event. As you consider ideas for your Valentine's Day party, be sure that they are geared toward the ages of your party guests.
If your child has head lice, try not to panic. Head lice are a nuisance and can be difficult to treat, but they do not carry any diseases or pose any serious health risks. While insecticidal products are often used to treat head lice, if you wish to treat your child's head lice naturally, you do have an alternative and effective option. Simply combing your child's hair is completely non-toxic and is the oldest and safest means of removing lice and eggs from hair, according to the extension service at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.
Encouraging your preschooler to do crafts not only provides her with an opportunity to express her creativity, it provides several other benefits. Taking part in craft activities helps her to develop fine-motor skills and can improve her coordination and strength, according to EarlyChildhoodEducation.co.uk. Holding a crayon or paint brush, using blunt-tip preschooler's scissors and gluing items on paper all provide your preschooler with these benefits.
Creating Valentine's Day crafts provides your child with an opportunity to express her creativity and her love for others. Since handmade Valentine's craft projects created by your kids can also be used as Valentine's Day gifts, you are able to repurpose them and put them to use once they are completed. Since the gifts are handmade, they will likely be cherished and proudly displayed by the recipients.
Creating art with your preschooler doesn't have to be a difficult task. In fact, many preschool art projects are simple to make and can be created from items you likely already have somewhere in your house. Preschoolers like to experiment with colors and design. Since preschoolers are process-oriented, they enjoy the process of creating art and aren't as concerned with the final product.
Organic foods cost -- on average -- 20 percent more than their non-organic counterparts. If you are looking to increase the nutritional value of the foods you serve your family and to decrease the chemical additives in the foods your family eats, paying the additional cost for organic foods may be worth it.
From air pollution to global warming, environmental problems are a global issue. Children who are concerned about the environment can take action. While it may seem that small changes, such as bringing their school lunch in a reusable container rather than a brown paper bag, won't make much of an effect, when many kids make small changes, the difference can be huge.
Every parent wants his child to be safe. When babies are young, you can childproof your home, lower your water temperature thermostat and take other measures to ensure your baby's safety. During the first years, keeping your child safe is relatively easy since your baby spends most of his time with you or in the care of another trusted adult in a child-friendly environment. As children get older, become more mobile and develop their independence, however, your proactive measures of ensuring your child's safety should include teaching him practical ways that he can keep himself safe.
From playing Peek-A-Boo to listening to music, most every activity that your child engages in promotes learning. This is because, for kids, most of their learning happens through living and playing. As your child lives and plays, she learns to interact with her world and discovers how things work and relate to her and each other in her environment. While learning does happen naturally, there are specific activities you can do with your child to foster learning.
By the time your preschooler reaches kindergarten, he will be expected to have developed solid listening skills. Playing games with your preschooler can help to develop those skills. Since most preschoolers enjoy playing games, they likely won't even notice that -- in addition to having fun -- they are also building essential skills.
Each February 14th, children across the country present their father's with Valentine's Day gifts to let them know how much they are loved. Helping your child choose the right Valentine's Day gift for dad is an important task. When choosing a gift, taking your child's age and her father's interests into consideration can help ensure you select the right gift.
If you are trying to reduce the amount of energy used in your home, consider starting off by cutting back on how much lighting you use. Of all the electricity used in homes across America, 15 percent of it is for residential lighting consumption, according to a 2008 report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
You don't need an elaborate assortment of supplies and an unlimited amount of time to create Thanksgiving-themed crafts. In fact, you can make many Thanksgiving crafts without any special supplies or skills. Using simple, common household items you can create easy Thanksgiving crafts that can be displayed throughout your home while you celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday.
During pregnancy, you'll need additional nutrients to help your baby grow and develop. In fact certain vitamins, like folic acid, can help prevent birth defects of the brain and spinal cord when taken before and very early in pregnancy. For this reason, the March of Dimes recommends that all women of childbearing age take a multivitamin that contains at least 400 micrograms of folic acid every day.
Between the sixth and 12th week of your pregnancy, you may experience pregnancy-related nausea and/or vomiting, otherwise known as morning sickness. If you do, you're not alone. More than one-half of all women experience morning sickness during their pregnancy. Fortunately, if you're having trouble managing your morning sickness, there are some steps you can take to help ease the symptoms.
When it comes to teaching manners, actions do speak louder than words. Regardless of how many times you tell your child to say "Excuse me" when he has gas, if you don't make a habit of saying it when you are tooting up a storm, he likely won't either. While the best way to teach your child good manners is to display good manners yourself, there are some activities you can teach your child to reinforce the importance of having good manners.
For babies, stimulation activities arouse their senses. Activities that promote seeing, touching, smelling, tasting and hearing will be stimulating for your baby. Engaging in activities that stimulate your baby can foster your baby's curiosity, help develop his attention span and foster his nervous system development, according to Health First.org. While engaging your infant in stimulating activities is important, over stimulating your baby may cause him to become overwhelmed and irritable. If you notice signs of irritability during play, take a break, and allow your baby time to rest in a quiet and calm environment.
While some boys may be ready to begin potty training between 18 months and 2 years of age, others may not be ready until they are closer to 3. While age can be helpful in determining if your boy is ready to begin potty training, it's not the most important factor. When deciding when to start potty training your boy, how physically and emotionally ready he is to begin training is more important than his age.
While the Internet can be an educational tool and a source of entertainment for children, too much Internet use may be problematic, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. It recommends that parents limit their children's computer use to no more than one or two hours per day. In addition to overuse, accessing inappropriate content online can also pose a problem, so monitoring your child's activities online is important. Fortunately, there are many Internet sites that provide age-appropriate activities for children to do online.
With all the sedentary activities like watching television and playing video games available, getting your kids to exercise may seem challenging. If you want to increase your child's fitness level, capitalize on activities that your child is interested in to get him moving. When you do, exercise becomes part of play and is easy to incorporate into his daily routine.
If you are feeling discouraged because you are shopping for a Mother's Day gift on a shoestring budget, don't be. Mother's Day gifts need not drain your bank account, especially since there are some amazingly affordable gifts that will fit almost any budget. While how people define "inexpensive" may vary, there are several thoughtful gifts that you can purchase under $20 to honor the mother in your life.
Your baby needs an adequate amount of sleep to grow and develop properly. Unfortunately, for many parents, getting their baby to sleep is quite a challenge. The good news is that there are specific things you can do to help your baby fall asleep and get the rest he needs.
Whether you are hosting a party or looking for an activity to do with your family, Halloween-themed games and activities can help get people into the Halloween spirit. In addition to getting people excited about Halloween, games and activities provide an opportunity for family and friends to take part and celebrate the holiday together.
Losing weight is a major concern for many new moms. Fortunately, if you breastfeed, you may take the pregnancy weight off more quickly. Since calories are burned while producing milk and nursing your baby, nursing moms have an added weight loss advantage. If you are a mom who opts not to breastfeed, you'll need to rely strictly on diet and exercise to lose your pregnancy weight.
If you want to turn your household trash into decorative treasure, let your preschooler help. Your preschooler can use reused, recycled and repurposed items to create works of art. From scraps of paper or fabric to expired food, your preschooler can use his creativity to create craft projects that can be displayed around your home, given as gifts or used to feed the birds.
While you can celebrate love all year long, Valentine's Day provides the perfect opportunity to show your loved ones how much they truly mean to you. One way you can express your love is by giving out Valentine's Day gifts. Valentine's Day crafts can make fitting Valentine's Day gifts. In addition to being easy and fun to make, they will likely be cherished and loved since you made them by hand.
Since 1914, Americans have been celebrating Mother's Day on the second Sunday of May. On this day, individuals across the country take time to honor their mothers, stepmothers, grandmothers and other women who have played a motherly role in their lives. One way children can honor the mother figures in their lives is to present them with a special Mother's Day gift. While a variety of gifts can be purchased, handmade gifts tend to be the most treasured.
Your home environment serves as a foundation for early learning. As your child's parent, you are her first teacher, and your home is her first classroom. Creating a home environment that fosters learning can have a positive effect on your child's ability and desire to learn.
If you are a nursing mother, eating the appropriate amount of calories each day is important for you and your baby. As a nursing mom, what you eat not only affects you but your nursing baby as well. Eating the right number of calories each day ensures that your milk production remains steady and that your milk has the proper nutrients for your baby.
If you're a nursing mom, eating a healthy diet is good for both you and your baby. Breastfeeding moms must eat enough food so that they can maintain their milk supply. When you eat a healthy, balanced diet, you ensure that both you and your baby get the nutrition needed.
Teaching our children to conserve energy can reduce the amount of energy used at home and in our communities. In the United States, our nation's homes collectively consume more energy than any other group of people, places or things in the world. Fortunately, if you're a parent who wants to cultivate a desire to reduce energy waste and an appreciation for natural resources in your children, there are practical and simple ways you can encourage your children to conserve energy.
If you are ready to begin teaching your preschooler the alphabet, consider doing so using arts and crafts. In addition to encouraging creativity, alphabet-themed art activities are an effective tool for reinforcing letter recognition, sounds and the spelling of simple words. When children use their minds and hands to create art, they are using several parts of their brain, which can lead to increased retention.
Infants are exposed to greater concentrations of chemicals than adults. A baby's smaller surface area and body mass make her exposure ratios higher. Babies also put everything into their mouths. From bottles to toys, if chemicals have been used in the production or cleaning, the baby may be exposed to chemicals. For parents who want to reduce their baby's risk of exposure to toxic chemicals, organic baby supplies are an option.
A well-planned vegetarian diet can provide children with the proper nutrients to grow, develop and be healthy. Since vegetarian diets tend to be low in cholesterol and saturated fats, and high in fiber, a vegetarian diet may even be healthier for children then a typical American diet, according to KeepKidsHealthy, a pediatrician's guide to children's health and safety. Since vitamin and mineral deficiencies can lead to serious health problems, consulting with a nutritionist can help ensure that a child's vegetarian diet meets his nutritional needs.
Former President Jimmy Carter may have said it best: The best way to conserve energy is to not use so much of it. Americans use 24 percent of the world's energy and only make up 5 percent of the world's total population, according to Mindfully.org. In fact, on average, one American uses more energy than 370 Ethiopians. Fortunately, some simple things can be done around the house that are not only practical, but they also conserve energy.
Managing your children, career and home life can be challenging. It's even more challenging when your job doesn't provide the flexibility you need and you're forced to choose between work and mom obligations and responsibilities. There are jobs that allow moms to create their own schedules and to work around their children's schedules.
Long before paper was made in large manufacturing plants, paper was made by hand. Parents can take their children back in time and enjoy the art of paper-making with their children. In addition to creating a hand-made craft, making recycled paper provides an opportunity to teach children the importance of reusing, renewing and recycling.
The best home-based businesses for moms allow for flexible scheduling and the ability to earn a predictable income. Moms who work from home often do so to avoid putting their children in child care and to work around their children's school and activities schedules. Since many work from home jobs can be scams, finding a legitimate home-based business is essential.
Using recycled items to make Christmas crafts with the kids can be your family's holiday gift to the environment. While the most common recycled Christmas craft may be making a Christmas tree ornament by cutting out an image from a recently received holiday card and attaching a string to it, there are many more creative children's Christmas crafts that can be made by reusing and recycling items.
Since they don't have a constant parenting partner, working single moms must often plan their work schedules around their children's schedules, be solely responsible for coordinating child care and be available at all times to meet the needs of their children. Jobs that allow for freedom and flexibility in scheduling, with the opportunity to earn a steady income, tend to be the best jobs for single moms.
Finding the right childcare arrangement for your family can be a tough task. Both family daycare and center-based daycare are popular childcare choices, but each has its pros and cons. In addition to considering your family's priorities, needs and budget, your child's temperament must also be a factor when choosing a childcare arrangement.
For parents who are looking for child care, both daycare and nanny care can be viable options. Since no child care arrangement is one size fits all, parents who are considering child care must examine the pros and cons of their child care options and choose the option that best suits their families' lifestyle, schedules and budget.
Young children have a hard time distinguishing between what is real and what is fantasy, so scary Halloween costumes and party decorations could frighten younger party guests. Be sure all aspects of your Halloween costume party are age-appropriate for children. Aim for cutesy rather than spooky to ensure the children have a good time.
Halloween cookies don't have to be complicated to make. In fact, some of the easiest Halloween cookie recipes don't even require an oven for baking. The most festive and flavorful Halloween cookies are often simple to make. The easiest Halloween cookies to make tend to be no-bake, made from common ingredients and can be made in just a few minutes. If you're looking for easy-to-make Halloween cookies, try making Witch Hats.