Tag Archives: toddler

The almost 4 year old and her tantrums.

My dear daughter is 4 in a couple of months. We are deep in throwing tantrums over to most, what would seem like ‘nothing important’.

To her, she has all these ‘BIG’ feelings and is struggling to express herself with words.

Tantrums can be exhausting and frustrating to any parent. But ask yourself, how would you explain your feelings if your vocabulary was limited and your brain was overcome and overwhelmed with different feelings and thoughts?

This is a typical day for a developing child. They have limited vocabulary. Struggle with day to day feelings and the smallest things to them can feel like it’s the biggest thing in their world.

Welcome to 3-4 year olds.

For example, yesterday my almost 4 year old had 2 tantrums within perhaps 20 minutes of each other. The first was because her 6yo brother was watching something that she didn’t want to, and instead of her watching it in another room. Miss decided to scream, stamp her feet and yell all kinds of things because ABC kids was not playing.

After we dealt with that in a calming manner, explaining to her that there is another TV that we could put that channel on for her to watch, she decided to calm her ‘Big’ and ‘important’ feelings.

The second tantrum was because she wanted avocado toast just as we were about to leave for her brothers martial arts class. As I explained to her that she can have it once we get back, that was not a good enough answer for her and she proceeded to sit in the pantry and pull out all boxed items, creating a ‘wall’ so that I could not see her. All whilst screaming at me to stop talking to her.

With this I walked away and let her calm down and within a few minutes it’s, she came over to apologise.

These are only a few examples of what we have been experiencing over the past few months. Prior to this, my little miss almost 4, has been quite well behaved and mannered.

I don’t remember my 6 year old boy behaving this way at her age.
Is it a girl thing?
Is it a second child thing?
Or is it simply because my two children are different people?
It could very well be a combination of all of the above, but in any case, I’m hoping that these tantrums start to dissolve soon.

Below is a link that I have found quite helpful.
Hopefully you will also.

Just remember, breathe and know, this is just a phase. You will survive, and you will both thrive from these ‘adventures’.

http://www.essentialkids.com.au/development-advice/development/four-challenges-of-parenting-a-fouryearold-20130402-2h5t9

Why don’t I answer my phone?

Quite often I have friends call and I just don’t or can’t answer.

For many reasons, I’m changing a nappy, I’m sorting food, I’m playing with my kids, I’m doing my household chores, I’m trying to grocery shop and not buy everything that the toddler pulls from the shelves, the little ones are screaming / dancing / fighting / being noisy in general, I’m at a play date, I’m bathing children, I’m trying to get kids to bed, I’m At a sporting event, I’m scoffing down my meal before being ‘needed’ again, anything….

i will I’ll get back to you though, within a few hours. I’m not rude enough to ignore my phone. 😉

Just because I’m a SAHM (stay at home mum), that doesn’t mean I’m avail 24/7. I’ve often been told that SAHM are often busier than those who work as those employed actually get a lunch break, they can take a shower without an audience, they actually can go to the bathroom without their toddler insisting on sitting in their lap whilst they urinate. They can take 5 minutes to themselves, they get peace and quiet.

Now I’m not saying I’m overwhelmed or dislike any of the above, I actually choose to be a SAHM, call me crazy but I love the chaos and craziness of it all. I’m constantly busy, but I wouldn’t have it any other way! ❤ 👨‍👧

http://www.mother.ly/work/4-reasons-your-call-to-a-stay-at-home-mom-goes-to-voicemail?utm_campaign=coschedule&utm_source=facebook_page&utm_medium=Motherly

The Happy Mom Pledge by Rachel – Finding Joy

For those that have followed me for a while you will know I have a few favourite bloggers. Finding Joy is one of those. Thank you Rachel.

Finding Joy.
“the happy mom pledge”

Repeat after me.

(and if you have little kids it might take a couple tries simply because you don’t get much quiet.)

I will know that I make a difference. And yes it counts when you get up early and pack those lunches and tuck notes in and wait outside the door.

I will not compare myself to the mom sitting across from me in Starbucks. That mom at Starbucks is probably comparing herself with you too so it might be better if you just said hello to each other.

I will give myself grace when I stumble. Sorry, you’ll stumble. You’ll make mistakes. You’ll burn the pizza. But you’ll get up.

I will find moments to laugh again. And it can be laughing over anything. I laughed at myself when I was headfirst in the dryer attempting to remove crayon because I thought I would be supermom and get all the laundry done super fast and super fast meant not checking nine year old son’s pockets for broken crayons. So I just laughed. And sprayed goo-gone.

I will give myself grace because chances are I won’t do everything on this list. If anyone on here completes a to-do list it will go on the Guinness Book of Mom Records courtesy of Finding Joy. Good luck.

I will not be so hard on myself. That means it is okay if you make cake balls and they turn into cake mush. It’s okay that your birthday decorations are from Target. It’s is way super okay (can we all just stand up and cheer) that you said no to the treat bags.

I will let the tears fall if they need to fall. Behind bathroom doors, on the phone, in the car, as you’re making lunch, to a good friend…tears are emotion…and sometimes they need to fall.

I will be proud of my children. Put their artwork up even if it doesn’t match your decor. Text your teenager telling them that you love them. Be proud.

I will let the handprints be on my windows and not apologize for them. Having kids means having handprints, sticky counters, and permanent marker in places. Like now, in my home, on my five and seven year old sons’ door to their room where they decided to write their name in Black ultra permanent never coming off you might as well buy a new door Sharpie. At least we all never forget which room is theirs.

I will say thank you to the barista at Starbucks.They are your friends. And at Target. And besides that – our kids are watching us. Always always always say thank you as you never know the impact you’ll make on someone else’s life.

I will not be apologize for not having everything together. Please don’t. Then I have to apologize for not having it together and then we’re both stuck thinking that we always have to have it together.

I will go to bed at night tired but knowing I made a difference. If you can remember this before you fall asleep than yes. Otherwise wake knowing that everything you do is awesome. Well, cleaning toilets may feel not awesome but let me remind you of your world if you did not do this. See? awesome.

I will try super hard to not judge others. You don’t know their circumstances. Maybe what is right in your world isn’t right in their world. Love. Don’t judge.

I will try even more super hard to not judge myself so hard. Um totally yes. (Sometimes the baristas at Starbucks remind me of this…see? Love them.) We’re our own worst critics. Enough. The Happy Mom pledge is about learning to give ourselves grace.

I will remember that my kids will make mistakes.When they screw up at school, which they will, and you get a note, which you will, it is not a reflection of your ability as a mom. Kids are human too. Help them with their mistakes and do not take it personally.

I will also remember that my kids do not indicate my parenting successes or failures. See above. Please.

I will remember again that I will probably not remember to do everything on the list. Just another reminder. Remember we’re only human. What matters is that you and I try. Get chocolate and start again.

I will look for one good thing every day. Yes, yes, yes. Please this. Look for one thing. I know life can be incredibly tough and hard and tedious and aggravating, but please look for one good thing everyday. Even if it was that your latte was extra hot and awesome or that your three year old went to bed without fussing. One thing. And three year olds going to bed without an argument counts as five good things in case you were wondering.

I will be thankful. Gratitude destroys comparison, envy, and that pesky part of ourselves that thinks we don’t measure up.

I will be me and will pursue the things I love. Just because you are a mom does not mean that every single thing you do has to do with mothering. Make sure to cultivate your dreams your desires and the things you love too. With NO guilt.

I will not feel guilty for the nights when it’s popcorn for dinner. Or macaroni and cheese from the box with the powder that you mix with milk and a dash of butter. Or chicken nuggets. Or pancakes. YOU GOT DINNER ON THE TABLE. Remember that instead.

I will not let mom guilt bug me at all, in fact.Going back to that mom guilt thing. It’s way way way too easy to feel guilty and to think that we’re not measuring up. Nope. Not anymore. Mom guilt? We’re kicking it to the curb.

I will tell a friend how great a job they’re doing.Starting now. Us moms need to hear from our friends that we appreciate them. Send them this note and have them be a part of this Happy Mom Pledge. No more you versus me versus her. That’s not happy. Unity.

I will see the good in me. After all you’re the only one who knows just what to tell your eleven year old when they’re nervous about that Social test. Or how to cut their sandwiches in the morning. Or where to find the missing shoe or mitten or homework. Or how to deal with slammed doors or I hate you’s and to not take it personally. You are great.

I will know that I am enough. If you forget read this -> Why Being a Mom is Enough

I will try again. And again, and again, and again. That’s called strength.

I will be real. There is no perfect mom in this world of utopian ideals. There is real. And real is beautiful, powerful, amazing, giving, loving, and awesome. So, yes, that’s you.

I will fight for my heart. And that means letting yourself be happy again.

I will love me.

That’s the Happy Mom Pledge.

Will you take it too?

~Rachel

(and to read a Happy Mom Story – read this -> The Marshmallow Story)

Tough days.

I will be honest, today was tough…

I cried on numerous occasions out of frustration and the feeling of defeat.

My very robust and super active 4 year old has been waking about 5am every morning for the past 2 weeks. I am tired.

Throughout the day he is busy, although he can play solo, he has been craving my attention and begging me to play with him. It’s not quiet play though. He wants to play superheroes or Jiu Jitsu. Both of which involve wrestling or jumping around ‘chasing bad guys’. It’s exhausting.

I try to tell myself that he is only 4 and I should relish in his want to play with me, as soon he may not want to, but – and I know there should not be a but, but there is. I’m tired.

I stay up late waiting for my husband to get home which is generally about 9:30pm. He works late most nights. By the time we chat, reconnect and have some time together, it’s about 11pm. Only to be woken at 5am if not earlier.

Running on empty and then having busy days it can get the better of me, and today it did.

I’m usually quite strong and can handle a lot. I take it in my stride, but I’m also human.

Today my little guy pushed all kinds of boundaries. As did my 18mo. They fed of each other’s energy and both were full on.

Whilst we were out at Jiu Jitsu this afternoon my little guy was just being silly and another mother passed a comment, a negative comment that hurt my feelings. I chose to ignore it but eventually it got to me and my eyes welled up. Yep in public, I was so embarrassed I tried to hold it together but the tears streamed down my face.

I had to go outside and get ‘fresh air’. It was hard.

I know he is still only 4. I also know he is pushing boundaries and I need to set some really firm ones.

Today I just wanted to ‘give in’. I had a burn inside me where I wanted to pack both my kids back into the car and drive home. Drive to my safe place where there is no one to judge me. No one to tell me how to reprimand my child. No one to snarl at me. No one to pass negative comments at me. No judging eyes. No looking down your nose at me and No looks of disgust.

I then got this post hit my mail box.

It clicked.

I needed it.

I know I shouldn’t feel embarrassed or threatened by my children’s behaviour, but today I did.

Tomorrow is a new day.

Stop Feeling Threatened By Your Child’s Behavior

The 3rd child?

So on the weekend my husband bought up the ‘3rd’ child question….

We currently have a 3yo boy and a 17mo girl. I feel complete, and extremely blessed. One of each is perfect for me. I have enough time with each and was questioning how would I manage another? We are in a great routine, they play so well together, they both sleep through the night, they adore each other, why ‘rock the boat’ so to speak.

Well firstly I was extremely shocked that my hubby bought this subject up, as he was the one that never wanted children. I basically gave him the ultimatum. He knew that when he proposed he was definitely having babies with me. He still proposed so he must not have worried too much about this.

Once we had our little man he then again said, no more babies I want my wife back and one is plenty, well again we had a chat and yes, we now also have a daughter. We have 2 amazing, gorgeous, smart, fun, happy and healthy little people. I feel completely besotted by them and am happy with the 2 children so you can imagine the shock when hubby bought up a third.

He was away last week for business and clearly missed us. His conversation Saturday went something like this.
‘Babe, do you ever get a pang for another baby?’

Well I nearly fell off my chair and replied, ‘yes I do, but I thought we agreed that the 2 that we have are perfect?’.

Hubby’s response, ‘after being away the past week I really missed you, little man and princess, I was thinking about having a third with you, would you consider it? Would you put your body through it again?’ (FYI, I get really bad morning/ all day sickness, with complicated pregnancy and difficult to actually fall pregnant)

My response, ‘I would put my body through it, absolutely, but we have 2 amazing little ones, do we really want a third?’

Hubby, ‘Hmmm I know, I just think how great a mum you are, how much our kids adore you and how beautiful our kids are, gives me pangs’.

Me, ‘Hmmm’.

So this was never a position I thought I’d be in. I’m pretty sure I’m completely happy with 2, I am one of 3 and remember that one of my siblings was always left out. I feel like 2 always play together and 1 is on the outer? Not sure. I think I’d want 4 rather than 2.

I know I have enough love.

We will see…..

http://www.scarymommy.com/the-day-i-fell-in-love-with-having-two/?utm_source=FB

Tips on raising resilient boys to help them thrive. By Maggie Dent.

Tips on raising resilient boys to help them thrive.
By Maggie Dent.

Maggie Dent is an expert in helping Australian parents raise resilient, strong and loving men. Her passion for helping boys comes from alarming statistics, revealing they’re more likely to take greater physical risks, get injured in accidents and sport, and face bigger mental health risks as they grow into men.

When Maggie holds parenting lectures, the room is full of mostly women – mums wanting the best advice on parenting their sons.

Help boys feel secure.
Boys may be expected to be tougher than girls, but in reality, all children can feel berated and vulnerable in certain situations.

Tip: Give your boy small cues to remind them they’re loved. For example, a little tickle, wink or high-five.

Modify language.
Boys develop language skills a lot later than girls.This is because the right hemisphere of the brain develops more so than the left. When boys become frustrated, they can sometimes default to anger since they don’t have the words to express how they’re feeling.

Tip: Use hand gestures as well as speech to explain what you need or want them to do. Boys also respond to visual signs more than verbal, so avoid calling out to them from another room.

Build bridges of connection.
Building little love bridges, or moments of connection, makes boys feel like they matter. Boys need to see constant loving action as well as verbal affirmations of love.

When boys are naughty it can feel like they’re intentionally being disrespectful, rude or forgetful. Reframe that idea, and know that at times, they really can only focus on one thing, and that they’re not good with change. If we understand how our sons process information, and accept they are genuinely more forgetful than girls, more allowances can be made and frustration can be kept at bay.

Tip: Try to avoid enquiring about school immediately after the day has finished — they’re exhausted and need time. Allow them to come to you when they’re ready to talk, and create moments of loving connection that they can hold on to.

Curb physicality and roughness.
Men are biologically wired to be physical. They have a larger amygdala and more testosterone, so their type of play can be quite rough.
Tip: Keep it safe by setting simple guidelines: try avoid hurting yourself, others, and damaging things.

Expect testosterone surges.
Boys have testosterone surges around the ages of 4, 10 and 14. Be mindful that this can mean excess energy for them.

Tip: Keep boys physically active in large spaces outside the home. Also, set them exciting, challenging tasks that require concentration – they’ll be much calmer afterwards.

ThermoMix heaven….

Easy, healthy cooking.

About a year ago something happened that literally turned things around for me in the kitchen. I met Caroline, my Thermomix consultant. She’s also a mummy with two young children so we clicked straight away over shared experiences.

Together she showed me how this one piece of equipment could help me in so many ways – not just making it possible to make healthy and tasty options but to do so quickly and easily, which of course meant I didn’t resort to store-bought yuckies. And having more free time was a bonus I didn’t anticipate but certainly appreciate.

Now I’m not big on selling things but seriously, this ‘thing’ she showed me, was about to turn my kitchen experience around.

Even better, I could get those nutrients into my littlies, especially my fussy young man, without resorting to a battle. Of course, trying new tastes often results in the reflex spit-out but a bit like the sleeping patterns persistence can pay off and it took less time than I imagined.

Yes, a Thermomix is a considerable investment, but for me it’s also been a Godsend and possibly one of my best purchases as a parent. They also have many options to almost ‘lay buy’ or ‘pay off’ this piece of kitchen equipment. I use mine almost every day and for everything from a smoothie, making porridge, chopping vegetables, cooking a whole meal at once, including steaming vegetable in the varoma, whilst making a pasta sauce in the jug!

This 1 item has eliminated so many from my kitchen. It chops, blends, steams, boils, stirs, cooks, poaches, purées and all on a timer. So no boiling over, burning pans or constant stiring. Best of all it comes with a recipe chip, which is amazing! It has hundreds of easy to make recipes, that takes no time at all to prepare and cook. Well actually this machine pretty much does everything. The LCD screen works a bit like an iPad. It prompts you all the way so you basically cannot stuff up! Easy!

Not only is Caroline always just a phone call away to help with cooking and recipe tips, but as well as a Thermomix consultant I’ve also gained a friend.

Your interested to know more, please feel free to contact Caroline direct. I’ve popped her details at the bottom of this post.

Or jump onto the ThermoMix website and check it out for yourself!

Here’s one of our favourite sneaky veg recipes:

Carrot and Zucchini Choc Muffins

Ingredients:
1 medium zucchini
1 medium carrot
30g raw sugar
130g chickpea flour
30g raw cacao
½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch nutmeg
Pinch salt
30g almonds
30g macadamia nuts
70g grapeseed oil
2 eggs

Method
Preheat oven to 180 degrees and line a muffin tray
Grate zucchini and carrot speed 7 for 2 seconds, transfer to a bowl
Add all ingredients from raw sugar to macadamia nuts and mix speed 5 for 6 seconds
Add oil and eggs and mix speed 5 for 20 seconds
Add back zucchini and carrot and mix speed 2 for 5 seconds on reverse
Transfer mixture to prepared muffin tray and bake for 20-25 minutes
Transfer to wire tray to cool for 10 minutes

I like to serve these with vanilla coconut custard…( one of Caroline’s recipes).

These can even be frozen so you always have a supply on hand!

If you would like to contact Caroline to arrange a cooking demonstration or purchase you own Thermomix you can contact her on 0402 483 803 or carolinesomma@hotmail.com

Digital / Screen time.

I know I have written a blog previously on ‘screen time’ and digital media for little ones.

I’m not saying never allow it. It can be very useful.
I certainly avoid my little ones using it where possible. My almost 4yo may get the iPad for about 2hrs per week and that’s with him using it for learning games etc.

I don’t allow him to ‘surf’ the web as I personally think he is too young and I’m worried for what he may find.

Call me over protective but sometimes even the most innocent, find ways or stumble upon not so pleasant things.

This is defiantly worth a read.

http://nypost.com/2016/08/27/its-digital-heroin-how-screens-turn-kids-into-psychotic-junkies/

Parental advice?

Ha ha ha!

Now I’m no one to be handing out parental advice, however I have had 2 different situations with my 2 very different children.

I received, and still do revive plenty of ‘advice’ from others. I listen yes, however I choose what I want to take on board and stuff I choose to pass on. We all have our own ideas on what is right or best for us, what we are willing to accept and what we are willing to try.

My first born, my now 3 year old boy. Well I de everything the ‘wrong’ way.
Perhaps because I was only learning myself? Perhaps because I couldn’t bare to hear him whimper, let alone cry?
Perhaps because he was my first born and I wanted to be awake all night? 😉😆😏 (not)

I’m not quite sure? However I would rock him to sleep every night, whilst I would pace up our hallway. I did this until he was 2 years old. I’d then carefully put him in his cot, if he would stir I’d then have my hand resting on his chest for ‘reassurance’. I’d then sit in the floor with my hand in between the cot slats (almost like a jail cell door) and slowly and gently pat him until he would go back to sleep. This could take hours (no I’m not joking)

He would also wake 5 or 6 times per night, sometimes more and then the whole ‘routine’ would start again. The picking up, holding, rocking, shushing, pacing the hallway, the resting hand, gentle pats whilst sitting on the floor and hand dropped through the side of the cot….. Over and over until he was fast asleep.

When I was almost due to have my second child I couldn’t bare the thought of doing this with 2 little ones. I thought I’d go crazy and not manage so we got an amazing sleep nanny in who helped with our little guy and after 4 nights of her advice. Guess what? He slept through and to this day, he still does. He goes to bed at 6:15pm, is asleep by 6:30pm and sleeps through until about 6:30am. With no pacing, no patting, no shushing , nothing. We brush his teeth, read a book, then it’s lights out with him alone in his bed calming himself to sleep. No pitter patter coming out, nothing. What a game changer!

Sure I miss the extra cuddles and laying with him, however I know it’s good for him to self settle and good for me to not be over tired. Amazing how much more energy I have and less snappy I am with getting a good nights sleep and rest. For the both of us. Because he also needs his sleep in order to grow, learn and be attentive and energy to play.

Our sleep nanny is a wonderful woman Jenny. I have attached her website below for those in Sydney NSW Australia, interested in her services.

Rest assured when number 2 came along, I didn’t do any of that. And you know what? She survived. I survived and we are both still alive and well.

She may just be a ‘better’ sleeper. She is a different person yes. From 4 weeks old she slept through the night. 6pm until 6:30am every night. Now I’m not telling you this to brag. I’m telling you this as all children are different.

When my little girl had her 4 month growth spurt or as some would call it a ‘sleep regression’ it was hard. She did wake for 2 weeks straight every 2-3 hours every night and I was beside myself as I was used to getting a good nights rest and a full 8 hours sleep. So I called in Jenny again. And, within 3 nights our little girl was sleeping through again.

She had her first birthday over the weekend just passed and has slept through every night since she was 5 months old. Thanks to Jenny!

Jenny didn’t punish her, didn’t have her scream the house down, none of that. She basically monitored her over night (let me sleep through) and then left me with her tips / ideas on what may work to get our little girl to sleep through, and yep, they worked.

Now this may not be for everyone. However I was feeling overwhelmed, I needed a full nights sleep for my sanity and also to re connect with my husband.

We would be sitting watching TV or eating a lovely meal, or just spending time together and each night, without fail, the pitter patter of little feet.

I can totally relate to this ‘Scary Mommy’ post. Gosh I think most of us can. It’s worth the read for the little giggle at least. 😉😊

http://www.scarymommy.com/earlier-bedtimes-healthy-children/
http://www.solvebabies.com.au

Stress free toddler!

Being a parent is the hardest job I’ve ever had, however by far the most rewarding.

All the academic qualifications can never prepare you for being a parent. A new adventure and or challenges on a daily or sometimes hourly basis.

Hold tight though, they are only little once and these ‘testing’ times will pass and perhaps we will look back and wonder why we thought they were so hard?

http://www.yummymummyclub.ca/blogs/andrea-nair-connect-four-parenting/20150420/handling-stress-of-having-toddler