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After Baby: 12 ways to maintain your relationship with your partner

 While it’s no secret to any couple past the honeymoon stage that marriage requires work in order to be successful, it can come as a surprise to new parents just how much raising children changes the dynamic of a marriage. Keeping the ever-elusive “spark” alive after babies come along can be one of the biggest challenges that a married couple faces, but it’s absolutely possible. These 12 pointers can help you maintain the great relationship you have, even when the demands of parenthood begin to weigh on you both.





  1. Put in the Effort – It may seem simple on the surface, but just remembering to put some effort towards maintaining your marriage when you’re exhausted, mired in the world of potty training or just trying to keep up with a demanding family schedule can be a challenge. Just like anything else worth having, a marriage does require at least some effort from both parties to continue running smoothly.
  2. Try to Focus on the Good Things – Becoming fixated on the frustrating aspects of your marriage is easy, but it’s also poisonous. Trying to keep the things you love most about your partner and your lives together at the forefront of your mind will require some dedication, but it can have very positive results in the long run.
  3. Compliments, Compliments – There are a thousand things you love about your spouse, but the hectic pace of everyday life can make remembering to appreciate those things difficult. Making a point of complimenting your spouse each day shows appreciation for them and can be the balm that frazzled nerves need during high-stress moments.
  4. Avoid Taking Stress Out On Your Spouse – Letting off steam is normal, but it can become problematic when you’re expressing your frustration with an unrelated situation by attacking your spouse. It’s easy to take stress out on those closest to you, but it’s difficult to repair the damage that type of behavior can have on your relationship.
  5. Make Time for One Another – Time probably isn’t something that you have very much of, which makes it all the more significant when you set a sliver of your precious free time aside to spend with your spouse.
  6. Remember That Your Partner is Not a Mind-Reader – You may have a running list of things that need to be done in your head, but you shouldn’t expect your partner to be able to read that list. You have to communicate your needs and expectations to your spouse if you expect them to be met, so don’t fall into the trap of expecting them to just know what you need without direction.
  7. Don’t Be Too Proud to Apologize – Flying off the handle is easy when you’re in the pressure cooker that is raising children on a tight schedule. When you’ve had time to cool off, however, don’t let your pride stand in the way of a much-warranted apology, especially if you’ve realized that your reaction wasn’t necessary.
  8. Assume the Best – When you’re stressed, tired and in sore need of a break, it’s easy to assume the worst as you’re trying to decipher the inscrutable actions of your spouse. Rather than believing the worst-case scenario is just around the corner, try to assume the best intentions were the motivation behind any behavior you don’t understand.
  9. Small Gestures Go a Long Way – A sweet greeting card snagged from the rack at the market, a favorite food prepared for dinner and other small gestures like these can add up in big ways, especially when they’re the bright spot in a challenging day. Remembering to do these things amidst the hustle and bustle of daily life isn’t always easy, but it’s almost always worth the effort.
  10. Seek Spontaneity – Look for every opportunity to do something lighthearted and unexpected, even when you can only grab a few moments in which to do so. Just because your impromptu road trip days have come to an end doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice every shred of spontaneity in your marriage.
  11. Remember That You’re Playing on the Same Team – When little grievances add up to big problems, you can easily lose sight of the fact that you and your spouse are on the same team and are pursuing a common goal. Rather than seeing your spouse as the opposition, try to shift your perspective.
  12. Be Adults Together – In a sea of diapers, cartoons and juice boxes, there isn’t always room for a grown-up discussion that doesn’t center around the practical aspects of running a household. Just spending a kid-free hour of television time together before bed can create interesting talking points. Every couple has their own shared favorite pastimes, but it’s important to spend time together being adults, not just oversized kid-wranglers.
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Top 12 Celebrity bumpwatch, parenting & kids sites

Besides BellyitchBlog, where else do many people turn for celebrity bump watch and for photos, news, updates and video of their favorite celebrity moms, dads and their adorable children? Here is a list of the top 12 sites we put together:
  1. Celebrity Babies People Magazine sponsors this amazing website dedicated to the latest news on the celebrity parent front.
  2. BabyRazzi This web blog merges top-tier celebrity gossip coverage with the most adorable pictures of the stars’ little ones.
  3. Celebrity Baby Scoop Where’s the first place you should go in your search to find the brand of diaper exclusively used by Brangelina’s babies? This site might just find your answer.
  4. Black Celeb Kids This popular site is almost exclusively about African-American celebrity and their various outings, excursions, and projects.
  5. Made for Mums This English parenting blog features regular posts on the parenting styles and trials of the world’s rich and famous.
  6. Lil Sugar This site bridges the gap between celebrity sleaze portal and warm-and-fuzzy, mom-centric news offerings.
  7. HuffPost Parents Find the latest baby stories from Nick Cannon and Mariah, Jessica Alba and — yes! — Barbara Walters right here. It was formerly called ParentDish.
  8. Famecrawler Designed with future moms in mind, Famecrawler ensures you a steady stream of precocious, paparazzi-ready baby coverage.
  9. Celebrities at BabyCenter In Hollywood, who spanks and who doesn’t? Who feeds carrots and who splurges on junk food? Find all the starry parenting info you crave here. This is the celeb part of the #1 parenting destination BabyCenter.com.
  10. SheKnows – This is a must go to site for fun and interesting takes on pregnancy. It also has unique stories related to pregnancy and parents from around the world. You can get a healthy dose of celeb pregnancy news here too!
  11. HuffPo Celebrity babies – This popular news and aggregation site has launched its own special section to cover the much buzzed about celebrity kids.
  12. TheBump – Though known best for its parnting communities and birth clubs, this resourceful blog occasionally delves in celebrity bump watch and baby world with fun posts.
Bonus: The UK Daily Mail Online and The Sun papers, both out of UK, are general circulation sites but which each dedicate much coverage to celebrity parents and mums-to-be.

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5 Reasons why kids are hyper

Do you have hyperactive kids?  Sometimes kids are just being kids and people are too quick to label them as hyper or having ADD or ADHD.  There’s a lot more to the ADD and ADHD than being hyper.  There are many reasons why kids can become hyper.  Check out 10 reasons your child is always hyper.
1. Food dyes:  There’s been a recent study in the UK where food dyes in drinks and snacks have been linked to a higher likelihood of hyperactivity.  Specific dyes mentions were FD&C Blue 1 and 2, FD&C Green 3, Orange B, FD&C Red 3, FD&C Red 40, FD&C Yellow 5 and 6.  Avoiding artificial colors in your child’s foods may decrease the occurrences of hyperactivity.
2. Preservatives:  Food preservatives were looked at in combination with the artificial colors so studies say it’s hard to determine if preservatives alone cause hyperactivity in children, but recommendations have been made to reduce or try to eliminate preservatives from your child’s diet if they are always hyper.
3. Sugar: While studies cannot confirm a solid link between the consumption of sugar and hyperactivity the average teacher can.  If kids are given sugary snacks in the morning to celebrate a birthday they are louder and less focused for the rest of the day. The body turns sugars into carbs which fuel the body and give us energy.  Certain kids are more sensitive to the effects of sugar than others.
4. Overstimulation: In babies we know that overstimulation may cause them to cry inconsolably.  In older children overstimulation comes out in tantrums, aggressive behavior toward others and hyperactivity.  Hyperactive children tend to get into more fights with their peers and have trouble coping with situations on the playground.
5. Excessive television watching: It seems like television watching gets blamed for everything.  Teens go on killing rampages because they watched too much violence on TV; we have a generation of overweight kids now because of too much television, etc.  Now hyperactivity is also being linked.  Watching TV is a sedentary activity and children that are prone to hyperactivity should have an active lifestyle in order to help get rid of their extra energy.  Watching TV is not active and therefore should be limited to an hour a day according to experts for those children that are prone to hyperactivity.

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10 ways to save money on child care

Hard economic times have forced many households to make tough financial adjustments, and families in need of childcare services have thus been presented with a daunting challenge: how do you cut expenses while still maintaining a high level of childcare? For those who find themselves in that predicament, there is some good news: there are several ways to cut back on the expense of childcare without sacrificing the quality.

  1. Nanny Share – It’s becoming more common for dual income families to share the services of a single nanny. The cost of her service is also shared, and the nanny alternates care of the kids in one of the families’ homes. This allows both families to maintain the quality of care their kids receive, at half the cost.
  2. Split Shift Care – A family with school-age children can reduce their childcare expenses by paying a nanny to work only the hours that the kids are home from school, giving her the rest of the time off. The family could save 35-40 hours’ worth of salary each week.
  3. Alternative Compensation – A nanny’s salary can be structured so that non-monetary benefits are substituted for financial compensation. In other words, some nannies may be willing to accept less of a wage if their salary package includes a gym membership or some other desirable benefit. Some benefits, like contributions to health insurance premiums, can also save employers money because those contributions are tax-free.
  4. Telecommute – Working parents who have the option should consider working from home when they can. Since education and experience influence a nanny’s salary, opting for a less educated or experienced nanny when you’ll be in the home may reduce your childcare costs.
  5. Flexible Hours – Alternately, some companies offer flex time to their employees, allowing them to work non-traditional hours. This can allow parents to work a schedule that reduces the need for child care. Filling in the gaps with part-time nanny care, rather than having full-time coverage, can cut childcare costs significantly.
  6. Budget – Assign a strict budget to your household expenses and make sure your caregiver adheres to it. Buy food in bulk, use coupons wherever possible, and cut out expensive snacks in favor of much more affordable ones, like celery sticks and peanut butter.
  7. Live-in/Live-out – If you are presently employing a live-out nanny, you may want to re-think your options.  A live-in arrangement might save you some money if you add in the accommodations to your nanny’s compensation at a lower salary.
  8. Reduce Duties – Families whose nannies are doing double duty as cooks or tutors or who have taken on other additional responsibilities may consider working up a new job description and contract. Sticking with essential child care duties could save you a bit in salary.
  9. Referrals – Some nanny placement agencies offer discounts or rebates when families who contract with them provide them with referrals. If you can find some families who need quality affordable child care, send them to your agency. Securing and screening a caregiver on your own can also save you costly fees associated with using a placement agency.
  10. Flex Accounts – Companies frequently offer their employees a flex account that provides the family an annual sum that they can apply toward any health care – or childcare – expenses they incur that aren’t covered under their insurance plans. Take advantage of those dollars and apply them toward paying your nanny.

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Back to School: 10 Apps that can Help with Homework

Once upon a time, kids who needed homework help had only their parents or caregivers to turn to. In today’s high-tech world, however, that’s all changed. Because a staggering number of modern kids have the power of an iPhone in their pocket, there’s a world of virtual tutoring programs available at their fingertips. Check out these 10 homework helper apps that can help kids manage and complete their assignments.
  1. iHomework – One of the most important things a homework-dedicated iPhone app can help kids do is to remember their assignments in the first place, and iHomework doesn’t disappoint. At only $0.99 in the App Store, this useful application allows students to keep track of their assignments for each class, manage projects, and stay on top of due dates for those assignments.
  2. FlashCards++ – Because this $3.99 app allows kids or parents to create their own flashcards for study purposes, this app can help kids from kindergarten to senior year study and retain information. Any area that your kids need coaching and special attention in can be managed with FlashCards++, and your created cards can be backed up with Dropbox to prevent data loss.
  3. Grammar Guide – When kids get old enough to start writing papers and book reports, teachers begin expecting correct grammar and composition, as well as an understanding of the covered material. With Grammar Guide, you can put a powerful reference tool in your kids’ hands, allowing them to look up anything they’re not sure about on the spot. Put an end to essays covered in red marks!
  4. Spelling Tutor – Younger kids can practice their spelling on the go using your iPhone if they don’t have their own with this $0.99 app that makes studying spelling fun. Create your own lists to correspond with those that are currently being covered in class as a study aid for your youngsters, and watch them become spelling bee champs.
  5. The Chemical Touch Lite – For kids learning the Periodic Table of Elements, The Chemical Touch Lite will be a lifesaver. The app maker says “Sometimes all you need is simply a periodic table.” Students will agree he got that right!
  6. Free Graphing Calculator – Graphing calculators are certainly not cheap, and they only have one use. This free app turns your child’s iPhone into a graphing calculator which, while still pricey, will at least allow you to keep in touch with them as well as help them complete their math homework.
  7. myHomework – A free app for managing assignments and test dates, myHomework is another that provides the very essential assistance of reminding kids that they have homework in the first place. The app can be used on either the iPhone or the iPad, and can also sync with the dedicated website to allow desktop access as well mobile management.
  8. iStudiez Pro – Not only does iStudiez allow your child to manage their homework assignments and class schedules, it also makes monitoring and tracking grade point averages and alerts easy. High school kids in advanced placement classes with high academic goals will definitely benefit from this app, which is directed largely at students on the collegiate level but can be easily adapted for high school users.
  9. Dictionary.com – Dictionary & Thesaurus – Recommended by Time Magazine, CNET and Apple themselves, the Dictionary.com app puts a comprehensive and exhaustive dictionary in your child’s pocket. In addition to the standard definition and proper usage information, this $2.99 app also provides audio pronunciation assistance and allows kids to shake their phone for random words, which is a powerful vocabulary-building tool.
  10. Mathemagics – Easy Algebra Fast – Mastering algebra is no easy feat, but this $0.99 app helps kids do just that. Helping kids learn to solve equations quickly, Mathemagics is like having an algebra tutor in your child’s back pocket. Practicing and accessing lessons, preparing for standardized tests, and getting top grades in algebra can all be accomplished with the combination of this one app and a bit of dedication.


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10 Suggestions for Parents of kids being bullied

There are few things as heartbreaking and infuriating as learning that your child is the victim of bullying. As attention towards this very real problem allows more parents to understand that the way some children are treated is more serious than a simple case of “kids being kids,” efforts to crack down on schoolyard harassment are increased. If your child is among the millions that are physically or emotionally tormented by a bullying peer, these 10 tips can help you navigate this delicate situation.

  1. Recognize the Signs – Kids are often reluctant to approach an adult or to report bullying behavior because of a sense of shame or embarrassment. It’s important to keep your eyes open for any signs of bullying so that you’re able to recognize them and begin to help your child solve the problem.
  2. Be Available – While pushing or pressuring your child to open up about any trouble he’s having at school is likely to make him even more reluctant to talk, it’s imperative that your child know you’re there and available to listen to him whenever he does need to talk to you. When he’s not being pressed to talk about being bullied, he may be more willing to open up.
  3. Ask Questions – Make sure that you take the time to learn what sort of abuse your child is suffering from, why it’s happening and what you can do to support him through it.
  4. Discourage Retaliation – It’s imperative that you not only abstain from encouraging your child to retaliate against bullying peers, but also that you take an obvious stand against it. Retaliation will only cause your child to land himself in trouble, and can often backfire in terrible ways.
  5. Save Harassing Communications – Make sure that any emails, private messages on social networking sites, texts or voice messages that contain harassing statements, threats or other proof of bullying are saved for reporting purposes.
  6. Speak With School Administrators – In persistent cases of bullying, the best course of action is to calmly approach school administrators to discuss the matter. Though it can be understandably difficult for you to keep your emotions under wraps during these conversations, it’s important to remember that you’re more likely to get the results you’re looking for if you maintain your composure and remain calm.
  7. Teach Him How to Block and Report Cyberbullies –Social networking sites, email providers and other Internet-based communication portals almost always have “Block and Report” options, which can help to prevent some harassing messages from reaching a bullied kid. Make sure that your child knows how to block social networking profiles, email addresses and phone numbers from contacting him.
  8. Get Him Involved in an Activity or Hobby – Helping your child find a hobby that he’s interested in and getting him involved in activities outside of school can not only help to distract him from the taunts of his classmates, but also can boost his confidence when he discovers that he’s skilled in a particular area.
  9. Nurture His Self-Esteem – Your child’s self-esteem takes a battering when he’s taunted by bullies, making it imperative that you do everything you can to help him rebuild it. Make an effort to let him know that he’s an important, treasured part of the family, and that he’s loved very much and cannot be replaced.
  10. Consider Counseling – In particularly severe or long-term cases of bullying, your child may require the services of a counselor to work out his feelings and begin to recover. Remember that years of being bullied are the equivalent of being abused for that period of time, and may require some assistance for your child to overcome
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10 ways to encourage independence in your child

Raising independent children is hard work, but it’s one of the most rewarding things you can do, for them and for you! Children who are able to solve their own problems and do things for themselves are happier and more relaxed about the world around them. They are less stressed about how everything is going to get done because they are in control of the situation. It takes time to teach kids how to be independent, so be patient with the process and expect a few messes along the way!
  1. Set clear boundaries – Let children know what their boundaries are and what is expected of them. There should be no surprises in what they are allowed to do on their own and when they should ask for help. If there are questions, kids should talk to the grown-up in charge and discuss the situation with them.
  2. Create structure and routine that encourages independence – Set kids up to be able to help themselves as much as possible. Put cups on lower shelves, keep drinks on the lowest shelf in the fridge, have children sort and put away their own laundry, let them pick out their own clothes and dress themselves in the mornings and create a snack shelf in the fridge with healthy options. The more they can do for themselves, the more that a sense of independence will be created for them.
  3. Teach problem solving skills – If children have a problem, teach them the skills they need to solve it. A common problem children have is fighting among siblings. Instead of always stepping in, give them the option of resolving the conflict with each other on their own. Role-playing is a great way to introduce these skills without having all the emotion of a real conflict in the way.
  4. Show empathy – It’s important for kids to know you care while they are figuring out how to solve a situation. Tell them that you care about what happens to them, but that you’d also like for them to be the one who figures out the solution. You won’t allow them to get physically hurt, but they do need to find a solution that they think will work.
  5. Let them fail – It sounds harsh, but allow for mistakes. The best consequences are the ones that occur naturally. For example, forgetting your homework at home will mean you will suffer a consequence at school. It’s a learning experience, but one that is sure to help your child remember their homework next time! Let them spill the milk when trying to pour it into their glass, then show them how to clean it up and try again!
  6. Let them do it themselves – Have children be responsible for their own belongings on a trip. They can pack a small backpack of toys and books to bring on a trip, be responsible for carrying it through the airport and onto the plane and make sure that all of their belongings get back into the backpack for the trip home.
  7. Give choices – Let children think for themselves and give them reasonable choices about their day. If they need to be dressed up that day, allow them to choose the blue or the grey shirt. Have them help you decide which snacks to prepare, what project to work on, what homework they’d like to do first and other choices throughout the day.
  8. Let them speak for themselves – When you are at a restaurant have your child order their own food or if you’re at a medical appointment have them speak to the receptionist, nurse and doctor. This gives them the opportunity to learn how to interact with people outside of their social groups and in professional settings.
  9. Interject, but don’t intervene – When children are in the middle of figuring out a problem, but are struggling a bit, don’t solve the problem for them. It’s okay to offer suggestions and ideas if they are truly stuck, but it’s important that they use the thought process to get themselves out of the situation. Your children will probably surprise you by coming up with solutions that you may have not even thought of!
  10. Practice how to practice – Practicing is a life-long skill that we all use on a daily basis. If your child takes up a musical instrument, but halfway through the year decides they no longer want to play it, use the experience as a practicing experience. They need to finish their commitment and should consider it practice for life. Make sure to explain that to them.

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10 ways to save money at Disney parks

Nearly every kid dreams of going to one of the Disney theme parks during their childhood years, but parents are usually a little more hesitant to book the trip because of the hefty price tag that accompanies it. If you are thinking about taking a trip to a Disney park and are looking to save money, check out the following ways to save hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars on your trip.  Keep in mind that Disney would like you to think that buying their packages is the best way to save money, but often you can save more by buying things separately.
  1.     Stay off the Disney campus.  Surrounding hotels have lower pricing to entice travelers away from staying at Disney.  Keep in mind that you will need to have a way to travel back and forth from Disney if you stay off campus.
  2.     Book your trip during the off season.  Disney has many seasons ranging from “Value” to “Peak”.  Unfortunately there isn’t a 3 month period that is considered to be the off season.  Weekdays during the fall months are cheaper, and the period after Thanksgiving and before December 21st, when “Holiday Season” starts, is cheaper to book as well.
  3.     Book a hotel that includes breakfast.  While breakfast is one of the least expensive meals to eat out, it can save you a surprising amount of money by eating at the hotel.  Before heading back to your room, grab some extra fruit for a snack later in the day.
  4.     Bring along a soft sided cooler.  You are allowed to bring in soft sided coolers to the park, and the ones that will fit in a backpack or are a backpack are ideal.  This allows you to bring in both snacks and lunch.  Plan to stop at a discount store or a grocery store to stock up on some food to take in for when family members start to get hungry.
  5.     Plan to eat your evening meal outside of the park.  By dinner time you’ve spent the majority of the day at Disney and everyone is probably ready for a break.  Take this opportunity to head back to your hotel and let everyone rest a bit and freshen up.  Then, before going back to the park, stop and eat something.
  6.     Bring a refillable water bottle and flavored packets.  There are water sources around the park that you can fill up a water bottle with, but it’s well water and doesn’t taste very good, so plan on bringing some flavored packets to sweeten up the water.  Staying hydrated at the park is very important since you will be outside much of the time.
  7.     Check out local ticket hubs for discounted tickets.  Disney wants you to think that you can’t buy tickets anywhere except through Disney and their affiliates, but this isn’t true.  Keep your eyes open for ongoing deals.  Sometimes you can make a donation to an Orlando hospital and the hospital will give you tickets to Disney for your family.  Different programs like this pop up all year long so keep your eyes open for deals.  Local ticket hubs can save you 5 to 10%, which may not seem like much, but once you do the math it starts to add up.
  8.     Join the Cirque club to receive 35% off of tickets.  Joining the club is free and you must buy your tickets 30 days in advance to receive the discount.  The discount is only offered for the Cirque de Soleil performances that are during the Tuesday through Saturday shows.  Check the online club for applicable dates.
  9.     Go to Disney Quest for half price.  If you’d like to check out Disney Quest (a virtual-reality theme park in downtown Disney) you can check for a manager’s special.  Often if you go within 2 hours or less of closing you can save half off the ticket price.  It would be something different to do and if you can go for half price it might be worth it.  This discount isn’t always offered so check while you are there.
  10.     When renting a car don’t get stuck on size.  If you plan on renting a car once you reach Disney make sure to check rental sites often, because specials do change.  Rebooking your reservation could save you a bundle.  Compact cars tend to rent out first so check the next size up; you can still end up saving because the rental companies may have a bunch of bigger cars they need to rent out and as such will give you a free upgrade.
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10 ways to teach your kids how to swim

Passing on our hard-earned knowledge to our children is one of the greatest parts of being a parent or a caregiver. For many, teaching the skill of swimming is one of the most challenging and rewarding of those tasks. One of the best ways to prevent drowning is to simply ensure that children have basic swimming skills and knowledge, though it’s certainly not the only water safety measure required.

Here are ten things to keep in mind when you’re teaching children to swim:

  1. Be Patient – One of the best ways to ensure that a child has an aversion to the water and never wants to swim again is to become frustrated at them during the teaching process. Swimming should be fun and exciting, not stressful.
  2. Don’t Push Scared Kids – Some kids are more comfortable in the water than others; those that aren’t big fans may take longer to learn than their more enthusiastic counterparts. Don’t push nervous little ones to learn faster or punish them for showing signs of fear.
  3. One Thing at a Time – Whether kids are toddlers or school-aged, it’s best to focus on one task at a time. Blow bubbles until that skill is mastered, then move on to kicking while holding on to something stationary. When they have one step down, then – and only then – it is time to move on to the next.
  4. Keep Lessons Short – During a day at the pool, try to break lessons down into one or two half-hour increments, while the rest of the time is devoted to play. Throwing too much instructional information at them can be overwhelming, and they may not retain anything.
  5. Make Sure That Lessons Are Age-Appropriate – A two-year-old might have more trouble mastering the back-float than a first-grader, so try to keep your child’s age and physical development level in mind when you’re teaching.
  6. Avoid Unrealistic Expectations – It’s quite unlikely that your little one is going to emerge from their first lesson as an Olympic medalist, so keep your expectations at a realistic level. Some kids may pick up quickly and others may need more time; it’s important to avoid shaming comparisons.
  7. Tailor Your Approach to Your Child’s Individual Needs – A kid with no fear of the water and a strong sense of athleticism and independence will require a very different teaching method than her timid, less-developed sibling. Tailoring your methods to each of their individual needs will work best for everyone.
  8. Floaties or No Floaties? – Some parents believe that inflatable “floaties” will help their child to become acclimated to the water, while others believe that they create a false sense of security and prevent kids from learning proper form. When making your decision, it’s also important to remember that a child who is accustomed to floaties will have to be weaned from them, similar to training wheels on a bicycle. Kids who never use them won’t have that dependency to break.
  9. Remember That Putting Your Face in the Water is Scary – Especially for very young children, submerging completely, or even putting their face into the water, can be downright terrifying at first. This aversion is usually overcome in a relatively short amount of time, but being prepared for it can help to stave off parental frustration.
  10. Start Acclimating Early – Even if you’re only playing games and swaying in the water, an infant who is used to being exposed to the water is likely to transition into swimming lessons much more easily than kids with no prior experience.
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10 bad eating habits parents teach their kids

Kids most often learn by example and I think we as parents tend to forget that fact as they get older. Once our kids are a little more self-reliant we usually go back to our habits as they were pre-children. As life picks up, moms go back to work when the kids start school, and everything gets busier, and it gets harder and harder to set a good example for our kids. Do you do any of the following bad habits in front of your kids?
  1. Salting your food before you taste it: This used to be a secret test that interviewers would use to size up a candidate for a job. Their reasoning? Salting your food before you taste it at a restaurant means that you have preconceived notions about how it will taste and this could trend over into other aspects of your personality. With children, using too much salt is a bad habit to get into because it’s not good for blood pressure and it makes your body retain water. Instead, try to use other spices to season your food, adding flavor without unnecessary sodium.
  2. Eating really fast: In our frenetic lives of running our children from activity to activity we often don’t have time to sit down as a family and enjoy our food. Eating too fast can lead to over eating because your body doesn’t realize that it’s full until after you’re done eating, and this can lead to weight gain. This is especially bad for our children because we are not teaching them to enjoy their food and listen to their body’s hunger cues. When they feel full they should stop eating.
  3. Skipping breakfast: We’ve all heard that breakfast is the most important meal of the day so why do so many adults still skip it? Scientific studies have shown that people who eat breakfast weigh less than those that skip breakfast so why do so many women still skip breakfast to save calories? Kids especially need breakfast to fuel their bodies and brains for a long day at school. Unlike adults, they can’t – and shouldn’t – get up and go to the vending machine when they are hungry.
  4. Midnight snacking: This late night habit of grabbing a snack is terrible for your system. Odds are that you are going to go to bed very soon after eating and those calories are not going to get burned off, which will also lead to weight gain. Kids who are active burn up calories a lot faster than adults and might need a healthy snack before they go to bed, but it should be at least a half an hour before bedtime and definitely not at midnight.
  5. Eating while driving: Again, in our hectic lives we’re constantly running from one activity to another, whether with the same child or a different child or our own personal activities. We grab a bite through the drive-thru and inhale it while going down the road, and we are inadvertently teaching our kids the same as they eat their nuggets and watch us in the back seat. What we should be showing them is to drive undistracted and that it’s important to focus on our food and enjoy what we are eating. Mindless eating is what also another cause of people being overweight.
  6. Skipping vegetables: We always think of children as not liking vegetables, but there are plenty of adults who don’t like vegetables either and it’s very hard to get your kids to eat vegetables if you don’t. Kids learn by example, and when you skip veggies they will skip them too.
  7. Eating out a lot: See a reoccurring theme here? When we are busy there’s no time for preparing a home cooked meal. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that restaurant food has a lot more sodium and calories than a home cooked meal. Look into other options, such as making meals ahead of time on the weekends so you can just take them from the freezer and heat them up, or get out your slow cooker and use it for hectic weeknights. What’s nice about a slow cooker is that if you take a few minutes in the morning to prepare it and turn it on you can forget it until you get home. Also, if you eat in shifts everyone can eat hot food when they are ready to eat.
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