Rest time is a very important time of the day for a child. Even older children who no longer nap need quiet time, to process information from the day and rest their growing bodies. A child’s mind works two to three times as hard as ours does! Even my seven year old has quiet time when she is home from school. It helps break up the day. I work very hard to stick to the same routine. I even structure our activities around this time, which may seem excessive (and sometimes we run late). But, my children’s bodies and minds expect this time and are comfortably into this rhythm. And, this part of our day also gives me a much needed mental and emotional break and my own quiet time. – Jodi Healy
Let’s face it, it is nearly impossible to eat healthy as adults, let alone trying to nurture children. There is always some birthday or holiday party with cake, candy, or ice cream. Even when I go to the bank they give my children lollipops. I refuse to be a maniac and constantly say no (it is what it is, sugar and chemicals). Or we are just running late and Dunkin Donuts or McDonalds unfortunately is the easiest snack (I hate when I feed my children these things but it happens and I have learned to forgive myself). In general the food we have access to is junk, plain and simple. Even if you buy and eat 100% organic (which I do and try) the products are out of our control. However, what gives me peace of mind is the two things I taught them and can control; taking vitamins and drinking a lot of water. At least I know they are getting basic building blocks they need and purifying their bodies daily (we are 90% water and drinking it flushes out the toxins and chemicals). These fundamental things have kept my children extremely active and healthy. I buy organic vitamins but simple Flintstone vitamins are great too.
Often we forget the environment is an integral part of life, even for adults, and that children learn through experiencing it; sounds, smells, sights, and touch of what is around them. A walk in the woods is a wonderful sensory experience for a child. At first I used to worry about them getting dirty, hurt, ticks, colds, and all the other million things mothers worry about, until I realized I was limiting them and buying into the fear based reality (and stressing myself and them out trying to stop them). In the end we are animals and nature is our home! Yesterday after dinner we put on our boots, went hiking in a foot of mud, splashed in the puddles, looked for animal footprints, and slid on ice patches. We were soaked when we got home but a hot bath at the end of the day made everyone sleep peacefully and soundly!
Bedtime routines are very important for children of all ages, especially young children. It is the end of the day for everyone! Everyone is tired and needs time to wind down. Routines and structure establish a child’s confidence and expectations. With a predictable routine, a child knows what is going to happen and feels secure and safe. Bedtime can be challenging, especially for mothers or caretakers who have been alone with the children all day with no break. Invent a mantra to keep your patience. Even if you do lose patience just communicate with your children the truth, that you are tired and need time alone. The most important piece is to never send your child to sleep thinking you are angry with them. Sleep is extremely important for children. It is the time they process all the information and stimuli from the day, and when their brain rests.
We, as mothers decided to share our experience, strength and hope with all of you. We all try to be the best mothers we can, and all want what is best for our new and growing childen. Sometimes our job is overwhelming and we feel very alone in our efforts, and even our struggles. You are not alone. We decided to write this blog to offer what we have learned and found to help you in your journey. We hope you find our content valuable, reassuring, and supportive! Thank you for joining us!