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5 herbs to avoid during pregnancy

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5 herbs to avoid during pregnancy,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.mother.ly/life/herbs-avoid-during-pregnancy

Herbal remedies have been used for centuries to treat huge variety of ailments and for health promotion purposes. But when you become pregnant, it is essential to know which herbs are safe and which herbs to avoid because whatever we ingest (food-born illness, for example) is shared by the growing baby and that includes herbs.

While most of us think of herbs as remedies for various health concerns, and even to help your fertility, once you become pregnant, if you’re still on an herb regimen, it’s crucial you consult with your doctor immediately. Studies have found that some herbs may cause miscarriage, premature contractions and birth, and fetal harm.

While you should discuss all herb and supplement usage with your provider. there are a few herbs that are definite no’s.

Here are five herbs to avoid during pregnancy.

1. Saw palmetto

Saw palmetto comes from a small palm tree, native to the eastern U.S., has been used for chronic pelvic pain, bladder disorders, decreased sex drive, hair loss, hormone imbalances, and prostate cancer. The ripe fruit of saw palmetto is used in several forms, including ground and dried fruit or whole berries. It is available as liquid extracts, tablets, capsules, and as an infusion or a tea.

When used orally, saw palmetto contributes to hormonal activity and during pregnancy, a disruption of hormonal balance could result in pregnancy complications.

2. Ephedra

Ephedra is an evergreen shrub-like plant native to central Asia and Mongolia. It also grows in the southwestern U.S. In China, people have used ephedra for centuries to alleviate colds, fever, flu, headaches, asthma, nasal congestion and wheezing.

Outside of short-term weight loss, ephedra’s effectiveness is weak, and one known side effect is increased blood sugar levels. During pregnancy, this could lead to gestational diabetes. Therefore, it is recommended to avoid during pregnancy and while breastfeeding.

3. Echinacea

There are nine species of Echinacea, all of which are native to North America. Echinacea is used as a dietary supplement for the common cold and other infections with hopes to boost your immune system to more effectively fight the infection or symptoms associated with the infection. Many studies have been done on echinacea and the common cold. The most common side effects of echinacea are digestive tract symptoms, such as nausea or stomach pain.

In addition, in very small amounts, echinacea purpura was noted to have ill effects on the sperm and egg—primarily a reduced ability of sperm to penetrate egg.

4. Black cohosh

Black cohosh is a plant native to North America. Currently, people use black cohosh as a dietary supplement for hot flashes and other menopausal symptoms. While research and data are extremely limited, black cohosh has also been used to alleviate menstrual cramps and to induce labor. But research suggests that black cohosh may be dangerous for unborn babies. As a result, it is suggested to avoid.

Furthermore, black cohosh should not be confused with blue cohosh (Caulophyllum thalictroides), which has different effects and is not generally recognized as safe. Black cohosh has sometimes been used with blue cohosh to stimulate labor, but this use was linked to severe adverse effects in at least one newborn.

5. St. John’s Wort

St. John’s wort has been used for centuries to treat mental disorders and nerve pain. Most recently, it is used as a remedy for depression, anxiety and sleep disorders. In addition to echinacea purpura, St. John’s wort at very fractional doses has also been have ill effects on the sperm and egg, and potential genetic mutations which could compromise the health of a pregnancy.

Furthermore, St. John’s wort has been noted to decrease the efficacy of birth control pills.

To be clear, the FDA urges pregnant women not to take any herbal products without talking to their health care provider first. Women are also urged to consult a trained and experienced herbalist (or other professional who is trained to work with herbs) if they want to take herbs during their pregnancy.



23 coats + boots to keep you and your kids cozy all winter long ❄️,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.mother.ly/shop/winter-coats-and-boots-youre-going-to-want-this-winter

Winter is coming, mama. Okay, sorry for the pun, but winter is really coming considering a good chunk of the country is now feeling polar temperatures this week. But don’t worry, we’ve you got covered (literally).

I did extensive research on cozy boots and coats for the upcoming season that are practical and will keep you looking stylish so you don’t have to go into an internet frenzy search once the snow hits the ground. I’ve also included some maternity styles for those of you who are pregnant this winter (like me) and need to keep their bump covered. Plus there are some for the kids, too!

These are the coziest boots and coats our team is buying this winter:

J.Crew Nordic boots

Nordic Boots

I got these when I was pregnant with my first because I was really terrified of slipping on ice, but also wanted to look stylish and let me tell you, they were a hit. That was two seasons ago and mine are still in great shape. Each boot comes with two pairs of shoelaces so you can dress them up or down depending on your mood (and outfit!) They are super warm and look cute with pants or dresses.

Sperry saltwater shiny quilted boots

https://www.zappos.com/p/sperry-saltwater-shiny-quilted-black/product/8899214/color/3

These Sperry boots will have you jumping in puddles with your kids without getting your toes cold. They are fully waterproof, have micro-fleece lining on the inside for extra warmth and a zipper for putting them on and taking them off easily.

Garnet Hill kids wool slippers

Baby Boiled Wool Slippers

These wool slippers will keep the tiniest feet around warm and protected. Plus, they come in a variety of fun animals that will keep any baby entertained.

The North Face ThermoBall™ vest

The North Face ThermoBallu2122 Vest

This vest is ideal for layering on really cold days, as it is super thin but mega warm. It’s also great to wear as an outer layer when you go out running since it won’t get in your way. Also, it’s designed to be packed into one of its pockets, making it great for travel or putting away when the warmer days come our way.

J.Crew Chateau parka

Chateau parka in Italian stadium-cloth wool

If you are looking for a pop of color during the dark days, these parkas from J.Crew come in vibrant colorways. They are super warm, stylish and practical—I still haven’t found a coat that has better designed pockets as this one. The price is steep but I’ve had mine for almost four seasons now and it’s still in rotation because the quality is so good.

Dr. Martens fur-lined boots

FUR-LINED 2976 LEONORE WYOMING CHELSEA BOOTS

I’ve been wearing Dr. Martens since I was in high school (not the same pair, but almost) and I cannot speak highly enough about their quality and resistance. These shoes are made to last you forever and endure all types of weather. These are my fave because they are fur-lined inside to keep your toes warm and require no laces to tie, which is ideal when you are super pregnant.

Bog kids boots

Bogs Kids Classic High Waterproof Insulated Rubber Rain and Winter Snow Boot for Boys, Girls and Toddlers, Multiple Color Options

These rubber and neoprene boots will let your kids splash around in all and every puddle without worrying about their feet getting cold and wet. They are also super durable and light so they can be passed on to younger siblings.

Kylie metallic hooded puffer coat

Metallic Hooded Puffer Coat

This is a head-turner jacket and I’m obsessed with it. I’s water-resistant and comes with thumb holes to make sure the sleeves keep you warm and covered. Plus, it’s on sale right now!

J.Crew Chateau puffer jacket

Chateau puffer jacket with PrimaLoftu00ae

This puffer is everything. The colors are bright and cool, the design is amazing and the hood comes lined so you won’t need to carry a hat that will definitely mess up your hair and give you static. It’s inspired by the wool coat mentioned above, but what’s even better about this one is that it’s filled with eco-friendly “PrimaLoft,” meaning each coat keeps 15 plastic bottles out of oceans and landfills.

Orolay down jacket (the most-wanted jacket on Amazon)

Orolay Women's Thickened Down Jacket

This puffer is a hit on Amazon with more than 7,000 reviews that say it’s a 4-star coat. Literally every influencer has had this coat and there is a reason why it’s a bestseller every winter. It comes in six cool colors that are easy to dress up or down.

Orolay children’s hooded down coat

Orolay Children Hooded Down Coat Girls

Plus you can also match with your little ones since Orolay just launched the kids’ version of the Insta-famous jacket.

Lamo kids classic boot

KIDS CLASSIC BOOT

This is one of Lamo’s all-time popular boots. It comes in three neutral colors that are easy to match with any outfit and the exterior is suede, while the interior is soft and comfortable for tiny toes to wiggle in and stay warm.

Native shoes lhotse boots

Save the Duck Native Shoes Lhotse Boots

These boots by Native (yes the brand your kids love) are just amazing. They are wind- and water-resistant while also being super duper light and soft. The faux-fur lining keeps toes warm and they don’t have laces. Plus, I kind of love how they look like astronaut shoes.

Penfield kirby jacket

https://www.backcountry.com/penfield-kirby-jacket-womens?CMP_SKU=PNF00EP&MER=0406&skid=PNF00EP-BK-M&mr:trackingCode=D6FA3406-FBC0-E811-8107-005056944E17&mr:referralID=NA&mr:device=c&mr:adType=plaonline&iv_=__iv_p_1_g_13362760597_c_92885917477_w_pla-578706444955_n_g_d_c_v__l__t__r_1o2_x_pla_y_7811_f_online_o_PNF00EP-BK-M_z_US_i_en_j_578706444955_s__e__h_9004338_ii__vi__&CMP_ID=PLA_GOc001&utm_source=Google&utm_medium=PLA&k_clickid=_k_EAIaIQobChMIyNbr2ejn5QIVGm6GCh1uiAsdEAQYAiABEgLUmfD_BwE_k_&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIyNbr2ejn5QIVGm6GCh1uiAsdEAQYAiABEgLUmfD_BwE

If you are looking for a jacket that can be worn every day with any outfit, this one is it since black is the easiest color to dress up or down. It’s fully insulated for the cold and wet days. The pockets are also fleece lined so no need for gloves (as long as you keep your hands in there!)

Bird Rock Baby moccasins

Confetti Baby Moccasins

These baby moccasins are just the cutest out there. Great for the littlest ones in the family to look stylish with some tights or while hanging out at home playing. There are colors and patterns for everyone’s taste and the quality is outstanding.

Elora maxi puffer coat

ELORA Women's Winter Warm Full Length Fleece Lined Maxi Puffer Coat

If you are going for a full coverage look, this long coat is for you. Sure, it looks like a sleeping bag with feet, but there is no denying that you will be warm, cozy and dry while wearing it. Plus, the 5-star rating from 215 other people means that you can’t go wrong.

Native shoes johnny treklite

Native Shoes Johnny Treklite

An alternative to the classic Timberlands, these Native Shoes boots come in a super cute light pink to lighten up any outfit you put together. It has a rugged tread to prevent slips and falls while still being comfortable inside.

Canada Goose trillium parka

Canada Goose Women's Trillium Parka

If you are looking for a major investment this is the jacket for you. It’s made for extreme weathers and will keep you warm and dry regardless of what you are wearing underneath it. It’s built to last, I’ve had mine for over six years now and it’s still like brand new.

Timberland jayne waterproof teddy fleece boots

Timberland Jayne Waterproof Teddy Fleece Fold Down

These Timberlands are a more feminine version of the classic and iconic boots. It’s fully waterproof, although since it’s nobuk I would take super good care of them to keep them looking as pristine as day one. Inside is a soft fleece lining to keep your feet cozy. They can be worn folded down to show off the fleece or rolled up for extra warmth.

J.Crew leather mid-calf high-heel boots

https://www.jcrew.com/p/womens_category/shoes/boots/leather-midcalf-highheel-boots/AB109?color_name=black

If you’re looking for boots that will dress up any outfit, these leather ones by J.Crew are a total hit. They are comfortable and will pair well with just about anything in your closet.

Patagonia fleece pullover

Re-Tool Snap-Tu00ae Fleece Pullover

This fleece pullover is perfect for layering under a coat in really cold days. The colors are super cute and the brand is known for its great quality so you’ll have this for years to come.

Stonz kids boots 

Stonz Scout Scout Cold Weather Snow Boots Super Insulated, Rugged, Lightweight, and Warm (5T-9T)

These boots are awesome for kids all ages because they’re easy to put on and take off, keep feet super dry and warm and won’t get in the way of playing with the snow. My son loves them!

Universal jacket extender

Universal Jacket Extender for Maternity and Baby-carrying, fits MOST zips, black, one-size

If you, like me, don’t want to buy a maternity winter coat that you will only wear for a couple of months, you can get this jacket extender that allows your belly to fit in any of your favorite coats without issues. Bonus points for turning any jacket into a suitable one to also baby wear once baby is out in the world.

We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You’ve got this.



40% Off Full-Priced Items plus Free Shipping at Lands’ End,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

http://www.babycheapskate.com/2019/12/05/40-off-full-priced-items-plus-free-shipping-at-lands-end/

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Save 40% on full-priced items at Lands’ End right now.

Use coupon code COCOA at checkout through tomorrow.

You’ll find great deals on outerwear, family PJs and more.

Shipping is free on all orders with the code.

This post may contain affiliate links. See BC’s disclosure policy for more info.



Do car seats really expire?,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.mother.ly/news/do-car-seats-really-expire

Car seat safety is understandably an obsession for many parents. We want our children to be as safe as possible so we pay close attention to the recommendations of car seat manufacturers, pediatricians and experts. We make sure our child is in the safest seat and position for their size and when our car seats expire we dutifully dispose of them instead of passing them down to our younger children, friends or charities.

Every parent knows that car seats have expiration dates—but why do they? What studies and tests prompted manufacturers and safety advocates to make this rule?

Could we be throwing away tons of perfectly good car seats?

Those are the questions that journalist Adam Minter set out to uncover while writing his book, Secondhand: Travels in the New Global Garage Sale. The answers he got didn’t satisfy him, and suggest that car seat expiration dates are more about increasing consumption than increasing protection.

A father himself, Minter was well aware of the fact that car seats have expiration dates when, in the course of reporting for Secondhand, he found himself at a used goods outlet in Tucson where secondhand car seats were being sent over the border to Mexico. Concerned that unsafe car seats may be putting children in other countries in danger, Minter decided to dig into the story—but what he uncovered was the opposite of what he thought he was chasing.

“There is no law prohibiting the sale of secondhand car seats post expiration or before,” Minter tells Motherly.

There is no law, Minter learned, because there is nothing proving that age alone makes a car seat unsafe.

Minter reached out to numerous car seat manufacturers and retailers expecting that they would be able to point him to a specific study or testing protocol used to determine when and why car seats expire. But he didn’t get a clear answer. Most companies did not reply or declined to comment.

He tells Motherly he was stunned that companies that use expiration dates on their products and marketing were unable to substantiate the claim that car seats degrade to the point of being unsafe after six years of existence.

Neither Minter or Motherly could uncover a specific study that is the basis of this rationale. The United States Highway Transportation Safety Administration says there is no regulation prohibiting parents from using an expired car seat, but on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website, parents are advised “The seat has labels stating date of manufacture and model number. You need this information to find out if there is a recall on the car seat or if the seat is too old.”

What could happen if a car seat is “too old?” Well, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration‘s website does not go into detail, but the Government of Canada’s website does.

It states that:

“Manufacturers give an expiry or useful life date because over time:

  • Frequent use and exposure to sunlight can damage and weaken plastic;
  • Safe-use labels on the products fade or become hard to read;
  • Instruction manuals have likely been lost;
  • Food, cleaners, drinks and other materials that have been spilled or used on webbing, buckles, adjusters and other parts may prevent them from working safely;
  • The history or condition of the car seat or booster seat becomes hard to check (was it in a crash, was it stored in a place or in a way that caused damage to parts, etc.?);
  • Safety regulations and standards may have changed, so safer products may now be on the market; and
  • Second or subsequent owners may not get product safety recall notices if problems arise.”

There is research to backup the first point. Exposure to sunlight can indeed damage plastic, but neither Minter nor Motherly were able to find any research that specifically looked at car seats, and how the plastic used in them might degrade when subjected to standard use in vehicles.

“We should actually have data available on the relative safety or unsafety of a secondhand car seat that, say sat in a car for 5 years in sunlight and one that’s totally new. And yet, if [manufacturers have] done those tests, for whatever reason, they’re not willing to disclose them,” Minter tells Motherly.

As for the rest of the Canadian list, the reasons listed do not apply to every car seat or situation. A family that is considering reusing their own car seat for a second or third child would know if it has ever been in a collision and how it was stored. The parents would know how often the car seat was cleaned and would either have the instruction manual or access to an online version.

As we’ve noted, government agencies in the United States and Canada do discourage parents from using expired car seats, and in these countries it is common for used car seats to be shredded or sent to the landfill, expired or not. But in some other countries, the use of used car seats is viewed as perfectly acceptable and is actually encouraged.

Sweden has a remarkably low rate of child fatalities related to vehicles. The country is very seriously trying to reduce the rate to zero, and yet the director of traffic safety and sustainability at the Swedish Transport Administration, Maria Krafft, has publicly stated that used car seats are fine to use.

Krafft put Minter in contact with Professor Anders Kullgren of the Karolinska Institutet and the Chalmers University of Technology, who replied: “We have the same experience in Sweden. Manufacturers of child restraints (and other safety equipment such as bicycle and motorcycle helmets) tell their customers to buy a new product after a certain period of time, often relatively short. We can’t see any evidence to justify that from what we have seen in real-world crashes.”

Kullgren went on to say that he has access to car seats that are over 20 years old and has not seen any degradation in the plastic.

Bottom line:

In an era when parents are extremely concerned about reducing consumption and carbon footprints, should so many car seats be thrown away, especially when there are parents struggling to afford car seats in the first place?

Perhaps it is time for parents to consider not throwing away or recycling their car seats, but passing them on to another parent. Minter was initially worried about the safety of children when he saw used American seats headed to Mexico, but now he is worried about the saftey of children who would be safer in an inexpensive secondhand seat than none at all.

[Motherly has contacted government agencies, retailers and car seat manufacturers and will update our coverage when more information is available.]



This mama wrote a children’s book about IVF—here’s why it matters,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.mother.ly/news/childrens-book-about-ivf

“Where do babies come from?” is a question that can strike dread in the minds of parents everywhere. No matter how you slice it, telling your kids the story of their conceptions can be tricky…and when you conceived via assisted reproductive technology? Well, that can add a whole new layer of complexity.

But author Tess Kossow has found a way to tell the story behind her son’s in vitro fertilization conception—and the best part? She’s letting other parents who turned to this technology use her words.

Kossow knows all too well how intricate the IVF process really is. The mother sought out fertility treatments after a year of trying to conceive. She and her husband began the process with two viable embryos—and while the first embryo implanted she later suffered a miscarriage. The second embryo became Kossow’s son, Ferris, who was born in April of 2018.

It’s so important to normalize the IVF process, and Kossow is doing just that—she’s showing parents who have opted for IVF treatments and their children that their stories are worth telling. Kossow has written the IVF story in the form of a children’s book called I’m Very Ferris.

“I wanted to go with something that would resonate [with little children] and get across the point of IVF,” Kossow tells People. “It’s a rhyming book. The pictures speak a thousand words. I thought I would do this through a child telling the story, instead of having the mom or dad tell the story.”

But giving children a better understanding of the IVF process isn’t the only goal that motivates Kossow’s work. She’s also committed to sending an important message about miscarriages to the women who have suffered them.

“It’s not your fault. There’s nothing you could have done,” she says, according to People. “I’ve come to realize from firsthand experience just how in depth pregnancy is. And how much it truly can be a miracle to carry a baby and to deliver a baby, and have a healthy baby.”

This is so important—because families come together in a variety of ways, and all of those ways are viable and worth understanding. Giving families who have come together thanks to IVF this kind of representation is so necessary. And we applaud this mama for taking this step. You can buy I’m Very Ferris here.



Up to 70% Off Magformers Today Only,06 Dec 2019 in Tips

http://www.babycheapskate.com/2019/12/05/up-to-70-off-magformers-today-only/

screen-shot-2019-12-05-at-6-53-05-am

Select Magformers magnetic block sets are up to 70% off today only at Amazon. It’s the Deal of the Day!

This 144-pc. set is 53% off at $94.98

Shipping is free when you spend $35 or more.

This post may contain affiliate links. See BC’s disclosure policy for more info.



How to create a happy + peaceful home for your family, mama,05 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.mother.ly/child/how-to-create-a-happy–peaceful-home

Mama, I know you already have so much on your plate, and creating a peaceful home in the midst of all the chaos can seem like an impossible task, but I want to give you some encouragement. You can cultivate a happy home where everyone can thrive by taking small steps each day.

Having a peaceful home is different for everyone—for some that means keeping a tidy home, for others it can mean Feng Shui decor at every corner of the home, or only playing stress relieving music at bedtime with candles. Find out what peacefulness means to you and stick with it.

By focusing on yourself, your family’s emotions, communication patterns and overall atmosphere, you can begin to make small changes that will bring more peace and joy to your home. Here’s how:

1. Get to know what brings you peace

Understanding who you are and what has shaped you throughout your life is important for cultivating peace within yourself because it allows you to take control of your story and grow into who you want to be.

We all have unique stories and events that shaped our beliefs about ourselves and the world around us. Much of what shaped you happened in childhood where you had little to no control over your life, and the things you came to believe about yourself and others then may not be serving you well today.

Everything that you have experienced is bound together, attached to your identity, and encoded in your brain circuitry. Unconsciously, you can continue well into adulthood letting others fill the pages while you sit idly by, or you can take ownership of your story and challenge what has been written by others without your permission.

Here are a few questions to ask yourself to get you started:

  • What are the events and relationships that shaped who you are today?
  • What has been the turning points of your life?
  • What successes and failures have created your current outlook about possibilities for your future?
  • What do you need to let go of in order to find greater joy?

2. Find ways to nurture yourself

We all know that self-care is important, but it often seems hard to attain. That’s why practical self-care is necessary. When my children were little, I would scoff at such ideas as “sleeping when the baby sleeps” which I just physically couldn’t do no matter how tired I was, but I finally learned an important lesson about self-care and that was I had the ability to define what it meant for me. I didn’t need to follow anyone else’s rules, and I didn’t need to steal hours to myself to feel renewed.

Catching up with friends didn’t have to mean a book club meeting. It could be a 10-minute Facetime chat. Date night didn’t need to include reservations. Sitting on the deck together with take-out was fine with us. Importantly, I learned I could be just as rejuvenated by laughing with my kids as I was by pampering myself with a deep conditioning treatment and facial mask. Self-care is really a matter of perspective and, yes, gratitude. Once I let go of unrealistic ideas about self-care, it became easy to find practical acts that nourished by mind, body, and spirit.

Here are some ideas:
  • Exercise: Maybe an hour at the gym isn’t feasible, but you can have a dance party with the kids. You can throw in a few push-ups while your child lays on the floor. Jump rope with your kids or break out those hula hoops. Short bursts of exercise throughout the day will make a difference in how you feel.
  • Play: Sometimes playing with our kids can feel like a chore, but it is possible to train your mind to see play as a positive experience. To combat boredom, find ways that let your inner child come out. Jump in puddles. Paint together. Sled down hills or make up silly songs.
  • Keep a book of joy: The benefits of gratitude journals
    are well-documented and proven to make you feel happier. Create your
    own personalized happiness book. Write what you are grateful for each
    day as a start and keep going. Fill it with doodles or photos, quotes or
    profound thoughts. Record funny moments, proud moments, and moments
    that take your breath away.

3. Accept emotions + be an emotion coach to your kids

Most parenting resources focus on discipline, but did you know that world renowned researchers Drs. John and Julia Gottman have determined two predictors for how children will turn out and it’s not about using the right consequences? The two predictors are emotional regulation and social relationships. Gottman says that it isn’t discipline that teaches these but “magic moments.” Magic moments are moments of connecting with children when they are emotional. It is through connecting during magic moments that parents can really influence how children feel about themselves and about the world.

How to be an emotion coach:

  • Help children label their emotions: In order to be able to regulate emotions, children must first understand them—what they feel like, what brings them on and what to do when they feel them.
  • Validate and accept all of your child’s emotions: Empathizing with your child even when misbehavior has occurred shows that you understand what they feel. And remember this is part of that magic moment where you are connecting with the child during an emotion. Ignoring or scolding can actually disconnect us and causes us to miss magic moments.
  • Set limits for misbehavior: Accepting your child’s feelings does not
    imply accepting their behavior. Communicate your feelings about the action versus their character.
    Explain what is acceptable and unacceptable, give a reason for the
    limit setting and emphasize the specific positive behaviors that are
    needed. When problem-solving, remember that there are two sets of goals,
    yours and your child’s and work to find a solution that meets both sets
    of goals.

4. Use positive communication

Positive communication is an essential part of all healthy relationships. It builds mutual respect, trust, connection and nurtures your child’s self-esteem. The parent/child relationship is the first place for learning what respectful communication and healthy relationships look like. Therefore, when we set the standard for positive communication early on, children develop the skills that will help them build healthy relationships throughout their lives. Here’s how:

  • Practice active listening: When parents are quick to brush off a child’s thoughts and feelings or to jump in with advice, communication shuts down. Active listening means listening attentively without interrupting while you seek to understand the words, emotions and experiences of the speaker. Remember: Children often just need to feel heard and understood.
  • Speak respectfully: “Clean that up now!” “What were you thinking?!” “I said no!” Would we ever speak to peers? Speaking to children this way isn’t necessary. Instead, set a standard in your home that leads to peace.
  • Get on their eye level: Being on eye level conveys interest and attention, which enhances connection and opens up the lines of communication. Imagine what it would feel like to talk with someone who is towering over you.
  • Manage your own emotions: Being in tune with and in charge of your own
    emotions is key to positive communication. By remaining calm and
    positive, your child will feel comfortable talking with you, and you’ll
    model maturity and emotional regulation.

5. Tend to the atmosphere in your home

Cultivating a peaceful home is much like growing a beautiful garden. It must be intentionally tended to regularly in order to flourish. This means pulling weeds (getting rid of bad habits, toxic behaviors and nasty attitudes), tending the soil (giving your children the right environment to grow, which includes safety and attachment) and watering daily (giving affirmations, connecting daily).

It also means that we pay attention to our own moods and how it affects our family. This requires parents to grow in emotional maturity so that our moods and behaviors don’t spoil the atmosphere of the home. Emotional maturity means:

  • Self-awareness of our moods, attitudes, behaviors and how those affect our families
  • The ability to self-regulate
  • Actions guided by purpose and vision

It’s important to possess an inner vision of what is important to you in motherhood and in life and to be guided by that vision. Otherwise, you may just blow wherever the wind takes you. I believe it’s crucial to reset your mind daily in alignment with your vision. To draft your own vision, think about the following questions:

  • What do you want your legacy to be?
  • What is your main goal as a mother?
  • When your children tell their children about the days when they were growing up, what do you want their stories to be?
  • List several words to describe the environment you hope to cultivate in your home

Tackle them one at a time over the next few weeks and journal about your experience and the changes you see.



10 Great Gifts For Hard-To-Shop-For Tweens,05 Dec 2019 in Tips

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/unique-gifts-for-tweens_l_5dcc64c6e4b03a7e02942e72

What do tweens want for their birthday or the holidays? These gifts are a good place to start.