Friday, December 31

Troubled Teenagers and Parents

How To Change Teenager's Behavior

Troubled teenagers are an increasing part of the modern teen demographics. As folks who have been there, it is vital for parents to lend all active support they are capable of before the matter gets out of hand and enters the teenage suicide statistics. Teenage is a time of dizzying ups and downs where emotions, physical changes, hormones, and even friends and finances are concerned. The one thing that remains steady and lets this rocking boat harbor safely should be the home.

Tuesday, December 28

New Years Resolutions

Set of 12 of 2.25" Buttons Pins Badges "My Very Funny New Year's Resolutions"New Years resolutions are usually blurted out in moments of festive abandon or when in the throes of a hangover. So it is never a surprise when they fizzle out with the soda at dawn. But this tradition of making New Year's resolutions does signal a positive way to enter a brand new year infusing it with optimism, hope, and a determination to do something nice with it.

The Art of The Fresh Start: How to Keep Your New Year's Resolutions for a Lifetime
New Year's resolution when seen in terms of some chore that has to be stuck to no matter what for the next 365 days may indeed seem like a drag that sucks the joy out of life. But if you think of it in terms of a way of grabbing hold of some aspect of your life with an intention to do what you can to make it better, it appears a winner all the way. 

Monday, December 27

Goal Setting For Kids

New Year's resolutions are goal setting opportunities. While parents go about setting goals willy nilly as part of their new year resolutions, it does not occur to most to include their kids in the venture.
What Are Your Goals: Powerful Questions to Discover What You Want Out of Life
Setting goals is not something kids do all by themselves and they most certainly don't have a clue about New Year's resolutions. If left to themselves they can go well into adulthood before they realize they've been drifting aimlessly. Taking responsibility for one's own life and steering it along a chosen path makes life much more productive, livable and enjoyable to boot. If learned in childhood, setting goals become a normal part of adulthood. 

So, the New Year is as good a time as any for parents to step in and educate their children as to the joys of goal setting and its benefits. Poised as we are at the end of an old year and the beginning of a brand new shiny one, give kids a go at the game of New Year's resolutions.

Monday, December 20

Piggy Bank for Christmas

Personalized Pink Ceramic Piggy Bank Gift

Personalized piggy banks make ideal gifts for the holiday season. Pig coin banks not only make loveable toys, they also inculcate money savvy habits that can set them confidently on the path of financial awareness. Personalized piggy banks ensure your child's individual tastes and preferences are taken care of rather than just foisting any random piggy bank on them with the direct order to "Save money!"

Friday, December 17

Media, Entertainment, and Kids

media and entertainment
Effect of media and entertainment on kids can be positive but unfortunately the negatives far outweigh the positives. Violence and children should ideally be on opposite poles but in reality the two have met and merged to dangerous levels. 

And this is mainly due to the violence in media and entertainment and its effects on kids. And this violence has an even more disastrous effect--the loss of respect for life

Tuesday, December 14

Teaching Children Respect For Others

Respect for others is an important lesson kids have to be taught, ideally, by their own parents. However, teaching kids respect is often not a priority in modern parenting. When kids learn to respect others it proportionately increases their own sense of self-worth and happiness. This has not been scientifically calculated as far as I know, but it is a known fact that when you respect others they accord you the same respect which in turn makes you feel good and appreciated. So, as unimportant as it may seem, it is still a good idea to teach your kids to treat others with respect and in turn expect the same from others.

teaching children respect for others
Photograph courtesy

Respect for Children

It is equally important for your kids to be treated with respect. They should be taught from an early age to expect respectful and loving treatment from elders and others. This holds true especially when they start school. Bullying is a hallmark of kids who lack self-respect. If your child becomes a victim of bullies, it is an infringement of their right to respectful treatment in addition to the physical and mental trauma inflicted.

Take all measures necessary to ensure your little child is treated respectfully by other students and staff. If you find it is not possible for them to do so, remove your child from the situation. Broken bones may heal, but a broken spirit is a lifelong source of pain.

Respect for Others

Respect is an appreciation of the worth of another person. It is an esteem you feel and show, for a number of reasons. What matters is not the reason, but the emotion. It is easy to feel respect for sports persons, high achievers, national leaders, and sometimes even movie stars. But when it comes to closer home, or even in the community, there is a lack of respect for other members.

childrearing tips teach children respect
Photograph courtesy

Respect teaches
  • Tolerance for Others
  • Love for your Country
  • Acceptance of Other Faiths
  • Communal Harmony
  • Healthy Appreciation of Different Cultures
  • Caring for Elderly and Disabled

What Parents Can Do

Do not talk disrespectfully of family members, friends, acquaintances, school teachers, political figures, heads of states, sales clerks, spouse, in-laws, and neighbours within earshot of your kids. They pick up the sarcasm and apply it unconsciously, believing it's cool to be disrespectful. Rude, cheeky behaviour to peers and elders should be discouraged and explained as not acceptable.

Growing Without Respect

Rude kids, if unchecked, grow into rude adults. They are the ones that spread ill humour and ruin your day at check-out queues, on the streets, in public transport, sales counters, offices, and restaurants. Surely you, the parents,  don't want to contribute to that. So teach your kids the healthy habit of respect for others. 

Friday, December 10

Healthy eating habits for kids

Healthy eating habits are often overlooked by parents of very young kids. Eating healthy food is not a choice kids make by themselves. It's a habit parents have to inculcate right from early childhood. By the time they realise their kids are into all sorts of unhealthy food it might be a little too late to change things. Healthy food habits are an invaluable part of a long and happy life for your kids.

teach kids to eat healthy when young
Photograph courtesy

Healthy food habits are not something you enforce on your kids one fine day. If you haven't been doing it since they were babes in your arms, you've left it a bit too late. You now have to fight off junk food, advertising, colourful toys, and media circuses, in addition to your kids own whims and fancies. All this make eating healthy a big chore when, in fact, it should be one of the most natural things in the world. But that doesn't mean parents should give up without a fight. This is a battle parents have to fight for their kids' health and overall well-being.

kids need to eat healthy home cooked food
Photograph courtesy

Junk food is here to stay due to its wide availability, low prices, convenience, and addictive taste and flavours. They cause childhood obesity, behavioural problems, temper tantrums, health risks, and diseases in adulthood. They take away considerably from a normal, happy life. There are a few things you can do to reduce its vile repercussions. 

Help kids eat healthy food like salads
Photograph courtesy

Cut out from children's diet from an early age

  • white bread 
  • white sugar
  • processed food such as cakes, biscuits
  • refined food
  • sugary drinks
  • soft drinks
  • lollies

Check food labels for and avoid

  • Soy lecithin 
  • High fructose corn syrup
  • Trans fats
  • Sodium
  • Added Sugar
  • Artificial Colouring Agent
  • Artificial Flavours
  • Preservatives

If exposed to these products in infancy, a lifelong addiction is in progress by the time they're five. Replace them with wholemeal products, lean meat, pulses, yoghurt, fruits, vegetables, healthy snacks, fresh water, and simple, easy-to-make home cooked food. Teach them to read food labels when they are old enough to understand. Make your own bread, cakes, muffins, and cookies using healthy non-refined ingredients and make this a treat and not a daily affair. Create your own jams and preserves using traditional methods without harmful chemical preservatives

healthy eating habits in childrearing
Photograph courtesy

By inculcating healthy eating habits in early childhood, you're giving your child a head start on the road to good mental and physical health. Armed with healthy food habits, your kids will be spared annoying diseases such as allergy attacks, asthma, frequent coughs and colds, temper tantrumsand whining temperaments. Introduce them to salads early so they don't miss out on the goodness of  raw food alongside a well-cooked meal. By encouraging your kids to eat healthy you would have given them a legacy that's hard to beat where family health is concerned for generations to come. 

teach kids to eat healthy
Photograph courtesy

 If you find your kids are fussy when it comes to eating healthy, encourage them by, 

  • showing cooking shows such as Jamie Oliver's 
  • get colourful magazines and cookbooks that are full of tempting pictures of healthy food
  • get them to begin cooking their favourite dishes
  • starting them on tossing their own salads with their favourite ingredients
  • bring up the topic of healthy food vs. junk food whenever appropriate without sounding preachy
  • enlist their help in making grocery shopping lists
  • show enthusiasm when cooking rather than treat it as a hated chore; your kids will soon catch it
  • have a small veggie patch with the basic tomato and herbs and enlist your kids' help in maintaining it
If you have ideas about healthy eating for kids that you'd like to share, we'd love to hear from you. Do take the time to leave a comment. Thanks!

Sunday, December 5

Drinking Clean Fresh Water is a Healthy Habit

Drinking water that is clean and fresh regularly is an invaluable healthy habit parents can instill in kids right from the beginning stages of life. If you can programme them to equate thirst with clean fresh water rather than soft drinks, you've done them an immense favour in terms of parenting. Honestly, can anything taste sweeter than fresh water after an energising fitness workout?

Wednesday, December 1

Fruits Vegetables and Kids

Childrearing tips on feeding kids fruits and vegetables might seem redundant at least to some parents. But the surprising fact is that there are Mums and Dads who think it's no big deal. At least some parents think it's okay as long as they are eating some kind of food and not going hungry. Raising children anyway calls for, what they see as, far more important issues than insisting that children eat their fruits and vegetables. Well, not quite. 
fruits and vegetables are healthy options
Photograph courtesy

Fruits and Vegetables are Important

Fruits, vegetables and kids sometimes don't mix. And this is one thing that parents easily give up on. But fresh fruits and vegetables have a very important role in children's diet. They supply essential nutrients, enzymes, and vitamins in their natural form. These are the building blocks of good physical fitness and mental health as the child grows into adulthood. Make it a natural part of their lives. 

Fruits are healthy snack options
Photograph courtesy

Eating fruits and vegetables as a matter of routine is an invaluable habit that parents can help inculcate in their children quite easily during the early childhood years. After that it might become an uphill task. Include fruits in breakfast and snack menus and veggies in lunch and dinner menus quite normally as you would chicken and dessert.

More Vegetables than Fruits

Most kids love tomatoes
Photograph courtesy
While kids should be encouraged to eat both fruits and vegetables, ideally you should give more importance to vegetables. The fructose in fruits is converted to sugar and so it might become too much of a good thing where a child's health is concerned. On the other hand, vegetables can be indulged in to any amount

Try to feed your children organic fruits and vegetables as far as possible. If buying conventionally grown stuff, make sure you wash off the pesticides thoroughly. You can't see or smell pesticides and might be driven to think a simple soak is good enough. No, it's not. You need to scrub them thoroughly and rinse well in flowing water, especially if you're making salads. When making salads, 
  • Wash fruits and vegetables thoroughly
  • Chop, slice, carve into interesting shapes and figures
  • Add salad dressing sparingly
  • Avoid store-bought dressing
  • Mix contrasting coloured vegetables to make it look enticing
  • Give a huge platter of salad pride of place on the dining table
What Parents Can Do

Walk the walk and eat them yourself. Do not put down any fruit or vegetable however much you may dislike them personally. Do not resist buying some vegetable that you may not particularly like. You might be inadvertently denying your child something that could well turn out to be his favourite. 

eating vegetables make kids healthy
Photograph courtesy Anita
Get recipe books with enticing pictures in them to get your children interested in the concept of fruits and vegetables. Put your child in charge of maintaining the fruit bowl with clean fresh fruits, noting when something needs to be refilled. 

If your child consistently  rejects certain vegetables, give him a break and gently re-introduce it later on when he's a bit older. Try new recipes. What she doesn't like grilled, she might take in a salad or boiled lightly. Use vegetables in  slowcooker recipes, soups, salads, stir fries, and juices. When using vegetables, 

  • Do not overcook
  • Do not cook in large amounts of water
  • Make your own salad dressing rather than store-bought ones
  • Avoid deep-frying
  • Avoid charring on barbeques
  • Eat raw as much as possible
  • Avoid genetically modified (GM) fruits and vegetables
Veggie Patch For Your Child

Give your child an active role in making grocery lists, shopping, washing fruits and vegetables before eating, salad preparation, and even setting up a vegetable garden. Prepare a small portion of your backyard, freeing it up for a veggie patch. Get a small watering can, gardening gloves, a couple of implements, some organic manure, seeds or seedlings, and you're all set.

Encourage kids to eat vegetables
Photograph courtesy
If space does not permit a whole garden, go for a pot with a tomato plant or a herb garden. Your child gets to see how vegetables come about from tiny flowers to big, fat tomato. Soon you'll have raised yourself a proud little farmer telling you to eat your veggies.