CreativeChild RSS Feed The Table is Lava is great for the family, because it combines imagination with dexterity! <p class="p1"><span class="s1">What do you get when you combine lots of wooden meeples with an erupting volcano? Imagine the calamity! And that&rsquo;s exactly what happens when kids play The Table is Lava &mdash; They ignite (pardon the pun) their imagination. </span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s1">It&rsquo;s an easy-to-learn game that allows players to imagine the dining room table is overflowing with lava, and everyone is trying to save their own wooden meeples. But there&rsquo;s not enough room for everyone, so players toss cards to try and knock other player&rsquo;s meeples off the high ground. An entire game takes about 20 minutes to play, and allows for up to 4 players. (But if you have a family of 5, you can add a 5</span><span class="s2"><sup>th</sup></span><span class="s1">&nbsp;player with the Coconuts Expansion.)</span></p> <p style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size: 16pt;"><strong>**<a href="" target="_blank">BUY NOW</a>**</strong></span></p> Tue, 17 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 Raising a Blended Family <div class="page" title="Page 12"> <div class="section"> <div class="layoutArea"> <div class="column"> <p>We recently met with Gina, a mama navigating life with a blended family.</p> <p>Q: Gina, talk to us about your family.</p> <p>A: We are a blended family. My husband has two older kids from a previous relationship, together we have our two year old daughter Sophie and we are expecting a baby in February.</p> <p>Q:Do you know what you are expecting?</p> <p>A: We are keeping it a mystery this time. We thought it would be a nice surprise to find out at birth. We&rsquo;re hoping for a boy but a healthy baby is really what matters the most.</p> <p>Q: You mentioned being a blended family, how&rsquo;s that dynamic?</p> <p>A: I feel lucky to be a bonus mom to my husbands children. But the relationship we have now definitely did not happen over night. We had to go trough many adjustments and learning phases to get where we are today.</p> <p>Q: Any tips to other parents experiencing a similar situation?</p> <p>A: Everyone needs to get to know each other first. Love and affection take time to develop. Give it the time it deserves and everything will fall together naturally. Communication is key. The way a blended family communicates says a lot about its success. We&rsquo;re not the prefect extended blended family but we try for the children. They always come first!</p> </div> </div> </div> </div> Tue, 17 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 The Softest Holiday Snuggles <p class="p1"><span class="s1">Our precious gift sets include a plush, super soft knit blanket, two bibs &amp; a wooden and silicone teether. These gorgeous collections are great for any baby and make the perfect gift for Christmas. See them <span style="color: #0000ff;"><strong><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="" target="_blank">here</a></strong></span>!</span></p> Tue, 17 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 One Diaper, From Birth To Potty Training <p class="p1"><span class="s1">Yes, I'm a diaper, just smarter &amp; cute. Secured flushable liner, just flush away the mess! Self fitting rise for the perfect leak free fit everyday, guaranteed! Pre-washed super absorbent hemp blend diapers. <span style="color: #0000ff;"><strong><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="" target="_blank">LEARN MORE</a></strong></span>!</span></p> Tue, 17 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 Staying Healthy During & After Pregnancy <p class="p1"><span class="s1">We recently sat with a new mama of a 5 month old boy, Marikate, and discussed her experience with her healthy pregnancy journey. If you&rsquo;re expecting, good nutrition and exercise is essential for your developing baby and for your own health. Here are simple tips for not only surviving but thriving.</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">Q: What&rsquo;s a tip you can give other moms on eating healthy?</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">A: Plan simple meals for the week. As a working mom, meal prep is essential to staying on track and proper nutrition. Look online or pinterest for meal ideas!</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">Q: How do you fit in time to workout with a newborn?</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">A: I found my tribe! My husband, family, or friends watch the baby so I can take that hour a day for myself. You can also incorporate your baby in your workouts, for example use your stroller to go for a walk or jog in your neighborhood or at a park, or stretch out on the floor with baby while you both work on your tummy muscles. </span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">Q: Besides exercise and nutrition, what's another tip you have for expecting and new moms to stay on top of their game?</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">A: REST! Give yourself a break, and I don&rsquo;t just mean physically. I&rsquo;m talking emotionally and mentally, too.</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">Q: How do you deal with the social media pressures to &ldquo;snap back&rdquo; after baby?</span></p> <p class="p3"><span class="s1">A: I remind myself that influencers have filters, photoshop, trainers, chefs and surgery. I stay present in the moment of my own journey. Relax, discover new activities, enjoy the experience and have fun along the way!</span></p> Tue, 10 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 ThinkFun Holiday Picks: Board Games and Puzzles that Make Learning Fun
 <p class="p1"><span class="s1">Trusted by Families Worldwide, ThinkFun&nbsp;is&nbsp;the&nbsp;world&rsquo;s leader in brain and logic games. We&rsquo;re passionate about our effort to make learning fun. It drives everything we do &ndash; and every game, brainteaser and puzzle we create. We love being the spark that ignites young minds and gives children an early learning advantage.</span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s1"><img style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" src="" alt="" width="200" height="138" /></span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s1">Our Holiday 2020 picks are board games and puzzles that make learning our&nbsp;</span><span class="s1">Cat Crimes, My First Rush Hour, Mystic Market,&nbsp; Minecraft Magnetic Travel Puzzle and Dog Crimes.</span></p> <p class="p1" style="text-align: center;"><span style="color: #0000ff; font-size: 18pt;"><strong><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="" target="_blank">**LEARN MORE**</a></strong></span></p> Tue, 10 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 Staying True to Yourself in Motherhood <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Motherhood changes you. That&rsquo;s inevitable, and it&rsquo;s not a bad thing. It makes us stronger, more compassionate, better. If we&rsquo;re open to it, motherhood will raise us up just as we are raising them. It&rsquo;s also possible, however, to lose yourself in the chaos and busyness of raising little ones - to wrap your identity so tightly around your children that you become only &ldquo;mom.&rdquo; And that isn&rsquo;t so healthy because then relationships can fall by the wayside as you shed other parts of yourself (friend, wife, daughter, sister), and your mental health will ultimately suffer. It may seem forever away now, but a time will come (and all too quickly) when those children you have built your identity around will be more concerned about spending time with friends than you, and you might be left feeling like a stranger in those weakened relationships that didn&rsquo;t get tended to, and even in your own skin as you try to figure out who you are when you don&rsquo;t have to be &ldquo;mom&rdquo; 24/7.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>##ad##</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">There&rsquo;s another way to lose yourself in motherhood that should be mentioned here, and that is when we simply lose our way in regards to our values and goals. This happens when we take the advice of the others while ignoring our own intuition, or when we allow busyness to consume us leaving little to no time for the things that really matter. For example, mothers who are committed to positive/gentle parenting may find themselves taking the advice to spank when they become exasperated or desperate for help with a certain behavioral issue. Or the calendar may get so full with Kindermusik, playgroups, sports practice, etc. that there just isn&rsquo;t time for family game night or the volunteering you want do. When we aren&rsquo;t staying true to our own values, guilt will seep in and make itself right at home, and that sucks the joy out of our motherhood experience.</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">With this in mind, here are 5 things you can do to stay true to yourself in motherhood:</span></p> <p><strong>Don&rsquo;t ignore your gut - ever.</strong><span style="font-weight: 400;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">Listen, raising kids is confusing. You&rsquo;ll need advice along the way, but if that advice makes your gut feel squirmy, raises a flag, or goes against your values, smile and leave it. Time and maturity is the solution for so many issues that crop up anyway. You have over one hundred million brain cells in your gut and it is a sort of second brain. It&rsquo;s pretty smart, so </span><span style="color: #0000ff;"><strong><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="">listen to it.</a></strong></span><span style="font-weight: 400;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><strong>Chase your dreams.</strong></p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">When you set personal goals for yourself, it&rsquo;s like a declaration that you have important things going on outside of diaper changes and nap schedules. It&rsquo;s just another little way to hold on to </span><em><span style="font-weight: 400;">you</span></em><span style="font-weight: 400;">. So, if you dream of being a writer, write! If you want to run a 5k, prioritize running. Too often, moms feel guilty for taking time for themselves, but you&rsquo;ll feel better for it, and feeling better helps you be a better mom. Don&rsquo;t let your own dreams die. Chase them! Show your children what it looks like to reach for the stars, because one day they&rsquo;ll have to reach for their own.</span></p> Mon, 09 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 De-escalation Strategies for Difficult Behavior <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">We&rsquo;ve all been there. Your child displays shocking or unwanted behavior. You automatically respond by yelling, scolding, or lecturing. Your child yells back, rolls her eyes, or storms off. Threats are thrown around, and the whole situation escalates very quickly and ends badly. Sound familiar? These are the kinds of patterns that are easy to get caught in. Our unconscious reactions usually fuel the same negative emotions that cause our children to act out in the first place, and we end up making matters worse.&nbsp;</span></p> <p>##ad##</p> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">I want to share a few simple strategies that will help you de-escalate tension and get your child back on the right track fast. The goal, according to parenting expert and author,&nbsp; Dr. Gordon Neufeld, is to get through such situations </span><span style="color: #0000ff;"><strong><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="">without doing any harm</a></strong></span><span style="font-weight: 400;">. Each time we allow the tension to escalate, we are doing harm by adding more negative emotions to fuel the flame. These 5 strategies will de-escalate anger and negativity and set you on the path to a positive solution.</span></p> <ol> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Pump the brakes. Practice taking a pause before you respond. It&rsquo;s tough at first! But the more you practice, the easier it becomes. A pause as short as three seconds can dissipate your anger and help you respond with intention. I recommend anchoring this pause to some type of physical action which will cue your brain to calm down, such as closing your eyes, placing your hand over your heart, or touching the area between your eyebrows. This small but significant act will change the way you approach your child in those first crucial moments after a situation arises and will ultimately the determine the outcome.&nbsp;</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Say as little as possible. When we are triggered or upset in some way, our words tend to not be very helpful or productive. Often, it&rsquo;s best to get through the situation limiting what you say. The less words you use, the less chance there is to say the wrong thing. Save the lecture for when your child&rsquo;s brain is calm and more responsive. You can always address it later when you have had time to think through exactly what you want to convey. It&rsquo;s difficult to escalate a situation when you&rsquo;re not talking much! Think &ldquo;Do no harm.&rdquo;&nbsp;</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Show empathy. We are so often led to believe that we need to be stern, loud, and even harsh when we discipline our children or else they won&rsquo;t take us seriously. We are warned that being &ldquo;soft&rdquo; will cause our kids to &ldquo;run over us&rdquo; or &ldquo;go wild.&rdquo; That&rsquo;s unfortunate because nothing shows more strength and authority than empathy in the face of difficult behavior. When we are able to soften and provide empathy, we are displaying maturity and self-control, the very things we hope to teach our children to possess. By responding with empathy, you will soften your child&rsquo;s heart as well, and the fight will go out of them, thus de-escalating the situation and calming their nervous system. Only when your child&rsquo;s brain and nervous system has calmed down are they receptive to discipline anyway.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Get on your child&rsquo;s level. For my six-foot teenage son, that means I need a step stool, but generally you&rsquo;ll want to get down to eye level with your child. When you are towering over them, you can seem menacing even if you&rsquo;re being calm and kind. Your posture and tone matter when you&rsquo;re trying to calm your child and de-escalate a problem. Our brains are hardwired to recognize threatening postures, so to avoid triggering a fear response in your child&rsquo;s brain, come down to his level.</span></li> <li style="font-weight: 400;"><span style="font-weight: 400;">Use positive communication. Speak respectfully, communicate clearly, and be assertive instead of aggressive. Assertive is a necessary skill while aggressiveness puts children on the defensive. Rather than aggressive phrases like &ldquo;You make me so angry,&rdquo; which lays blame and triggers defense, try assertive phrases such as, &ldquo;I feel ______ when you ______.&rdquo; Here, you take ownership for your own feelings while conveying your needs to your child. These small tweaks in communication have a big impact on your relationship.</span></li> </ol> <p><span style="font-weight: 400;">I hope these five simple de-escalation strategies will help you reduce tension and arguments in your home and improve your communication and relationship with your child. Remember, each time you practice a new skill, you are creating a pathway in your brain that will make it easier the next time. Eventually, you&rsquo;ll automatically pause and respond with empathy and intention. </span></p> Mon, 09 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 Meet Lisa, mom of 2! <p class="p1"><span class="s1">Meet Lisa, mom of 2. &ndash; MOM of teenager and newborn.</span></p> <p><strong><span class="s2">Lisa, you recently gave birth to a baby boy. Talk to us about your family. </span></strong></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s2">Yes, we welcomed baby Connor earlier this summer. It&rsquo;s been an adjustment for us as our daughter is 13 so we had been out of diapers for years. </span><span class="s2">Wow, That&rsquo;s definitely a change. </span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s2">Major change but we would not have it any other way. We truly feel that our family is complete now with the arrival of our son. It&rsquo;s been incredible to witness the sibling bond that my daughter and son share together. </span></p> <p class="p1"><strong><span class="s2">What made you decide to expand your family after all those years?</span></strong></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s2">My husband I are high school sweet hearts. We got married and started our family right after we go out of college. So we were basically raising a child while starting new careers and learning to be husband and wife. It was a lot to juggle. At the time a family of 3 was the right fit for us. A few years ago, we brought up the idea of expanding our family and it took us awhile to get pregnant. We started looking into adopting and shortly after I found out I was expecting. </span></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s2">We were all so thrilled. </span></p> <p class="p1"><strong><span class="s2">How was this pregnancy different from your first?</span></strong></p> <p class="p1"><span class="s2">It was different in so many ways. The first time around I was younger and less tired. Lol In all seriousness, I enjoyed my second pregnancy a lot more. I felt more ready to be a mom. I felt more grounded and financially more secured. We also made the decision that I would stay home for the time being as our oldest is now doing school virtually so overall I also feel more present. </span></p> Wed, 04 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800 Smart Tech Sound Action Tunnel Circle Set <p class="p1">Smart Tech Sound adds a personalized layer to the BRIO World, empowering children to take charge of a customizable and rewarding play experience powered by their imagination. Record their own sounds and play them back using the "sound" action tunnel.</p> <p class="p1"><img style="display: block; margin-left: auto; margin-right: auto;" src="" alt="" width="200" height="138" /></p> <p class="p1">It&rsquo;s easy for kids to program their engine&rsquo;s journey by simply placing the action tunnels along the tracks. Buttons on top of the engine allow for easy controls to make the engine go forward, reverse or stop. The free Smart Tech Sound app includes a sound bank of programmable sounds and a remote-control function. BRIO&rsquo;s toy train sets are compatible with all BRIO railway sets, so you start with Smart Tech Sound or expand your BRIO World.</p> <p class="p1" style="text-align: center;"><span style="font-size: 18pt;"><strong><span style="color: #0000ff;"><a style="color: #0000ff;" href="" target="_blank">**BUY NOW**</a></span></strong></span></p> <p class="p1">&nbsp;</p> Tue, 03 Nov 2020 00:00:00 -0800