A recent study, which is published in today’s Record on Page A2, finds children need a consistent bedtime basically or else they will go cray cray on you. Um, yes. Rocket science, right?
These, I’m sure highly paid, scientists behind this study say a majority of behavioral problems are stemming from kids going to sleep at random times, which leaves the kidos with a feeling similar to jet lag, and the longer the erratic pattern continues, the worse it gets.
If you are a parent who does this, I’m sorry, there is no hope for your groggy, maniac kid.
No, I’m kidding, there is hope really. But if you do not know this information already, you might need some zzzz’s yourself and I urge you to phone a friend to help you out.
The experts, who I hope are not banking on a medal for this study, say the craziness from an erratic sleep pattern is reversible.
On that note … Yes, it’s past my bedtime
Ensuring my 3-year-old grazer was eating in balance was starting to become a bit of a challenge. She’d eat a decent amount for breakfast and ate well at dinner, but lunch was sometimes tricky. I’d keep track mentally of all that she stuffed every so often into her little chipmunk cheeks. Her half sandwich would sit out all day and get dry.
I had an epiphany.
I love going to restaurants and getting sampler style meals; small bites with enough variety to keep the taste buds entertained and the stomach feeling light. Why not incorporate that same plating style for the rug rat?
On her bento-style lunch plate: 3-4 squares of cheese, 4-6 grapes, 3-4 crackers, a few bits of orange, a couple carrots and a gallop of peanut butter. She was excited. She ate everything a bit quicker than before then asked for more. Success!
When I was pregnant, a close friend of mine gifted us a toddler cookbook. It had fun, creative ideas to energize picky, grazing kids into eating a little better – and healthy too.
My little girl is more of a veggie like her mama, so getting her to eat meat isn’t easy but we do make sure she gets enough protein even if it’s in other food sources. The other night, we made chili-cheeseburger cupcakes, and she and the hubs, were in heaven. Baby boy, however, gets his in mush form and loved it too. But, it’s not like he can really complain too much yet. Thank goodness.
Pinterest.com has a lot of neat ideas. Feel free to share some of yours.
Syndicated columnist Ruben Navarrette of San Diego offers an interesting look at struggling parents and the needs for patience and empathy in our society. I couldn’t agree more — and on so many levels.
Yes, there are a lot of douche-bag “guardians” but there also is a group of caring and loving families taking care of average children who are, well, being children.
I think society often expects children to live up to some tight, controlling and irrational standard when perhaps it’s the adults who could stand to take a chill pill.
Kids are learning to express their emotions and aren’t perfect. They can tire easier than adults, too.
One afternoon before my night shift, I just had to get milk for my family and it was near my 3-year-old daughter’s nap time. She was great the whole time. And then, we were at the checkout. She began crying and screaming. I was taken aback because she’s never like that. Trying to gain a calm control of her as she’s thrashing around and trying to push my cart, holding the milk and my purse … not a good picture and I was completely embarrassed. Of all the people staring and probably making judgments, two men stepped up. One took my cart; the other carried my other items so that I could carry my girl to the car. Both were so nice and shared their empathy. “I’ve got kids and they just sometimes do that. Don’t worry,” one said, who also was a clerk at the SMart we were at.
Right as I drove away, my daughter said she was sorry and then crashed out hard.
Would love your thoughts:
Offer patience, not glares, to struggling parents
Butternut squash is nutritious and delicious.
Now that my son is eating solid foods, I’ve been getting creative. I occasionally will buy the pre-made baby food, but quite regularly I make his food as I did for our daughter. Now, don’t think I’m all fancy and stuff. It’s not like that. I’m cheap, really. Also, I like to get dirty. Baby food is easy to make, but coming up with a pint-sized menu can be a little challenging if you don’t want to go for the mundane. Doing so — check this fanciness out — will expand your child’s palate. Mm ..hm, yeah, you like that, huh!?
~ Cinnamon-dusted butternut squash roasted with garlic, onion, and parsnips; puree in a processor (I use the Magic Bullet – love it) with a splash of formula or breast-milk and a scoop of baby rice. Add water for desired consistency. Viola! So fancy you could put it on a cracker. Serve with a nice Chianti – for yourself, of course.
I do get inspirations from Food&Wine magazine. Kidding. Slightly. Anyway, the kid eats it up. C’mon, that’s way better than giving him sale brand A’s veggie dinner. I once bought one of those “organic” pouches in a “Veggie bake” flavor. It had me with “Mmm … it’s delicious” printed on the package. I should have stuck with my intuition but I took it home anyway.
My son wouldn’t open his mouth. It stank like crusty fish with a wet moldy sock.
He’s such a good boy, though, and he gave it a whirl. He gagged for nearly two minutes. His eyes watery and face a bit pink. I quickly apologized in astonishment and he flashed me an “it’s-ok-mom” smile. I paid nearly $2 for that crap.
The schmancy din din I created in the recipe above was $2 and I had nearly eight servings. I froze the rest for future use. Eat your heart out.
When I signed on to do this blog, I had no initial intent to parent bash, because I figure plenty of people on the Internet are better equipped to cover the politics of the child raising industry than I. And Lord knows no one is perfect and everyone has different parenting styles that work for them. But I think about the number of times I’ve considered walking up to someone behaving like a complete jerk toward their child, or worse, with the express purpose of telling them off. I’ll just do it here, though I doubt they read this.
It just seems like some parents don’t want to parent. The lack of responsibility, maturity and brains in some people used to be held secret behind their own doors, but now, they’re letting it run rampant in the general public – and even calling the police to handle their business.
I recently spoke with a couple who work in law enforcement in Kentucky. One specifically works with juveniles and said he can’t count how many calls he’s received from parents asking him to come wake up their kid to force them to go school. He had even more stories similar to that. Really, people? You don’t call the police for that kind of crap.
Kids these days, and parents too for that matter, are becoming more rude and need to understand that they must earn respect, not command it.
What happened to mom or dad being the parent? It seems some just want to be their kids’ friend instead, or perhaps it’s just pure laziness. And kids will mimic their parents’ behavior.
One woman told me she doesn’t like to get mad at her kids and allows them do what they want because she doesn’t see them all day. She works until late evening and is a single mom. She loves her kids, but they are hellions. She was working on gaining a bit more family support, which is always helpful. I told her, I know you love them, but loving them also requires helping them to become good people – ones of which you can be even more proud. Being a parent can be hard work at times, but the end result can be truly rewarding.
In tomorrow’s Record, page B3, is an article on an interesting study about how kids learn a lot of helpful life skills from being in a family with more than one sibling. Marriages for the children of multiple sibling homes were less likely to end in divorce because the children had learned how to handle their emotions better, had learned to live well with other people and perhaps had a better mindset on the ideals of a commitment.
My husband and I each are the oldest of six children and we wouldn’t have had it any other way. As a kid, sure, I had more responsibilities as I often watched over and took care of my siblings. My youngest sibling, a brother, is 11 years old. I just turned 36. There is quite an age gap between some of us, but my brothers and sisters still call me seeking guidance, we hang out when we can and we have tons of great memories together.
I can’t wait for my kids to have the same – just a little more closer in age.
I spoke with a social worker recently about foster care and the details of her job. I certainly admire her strength in dealing with some of the crazy situations she has faced in her job.
I couldn’t believe it when she told me that some people who chose to foster — not even the real parents — had not given the children in their care such basic things as regular baths or even birthdays. It was only later that she had heard from a former foster child that he had never celebrated his birthday while he was living with his foster family, and he didn’t think to tell anyone about some of the neglect he felt because the home was stable and better than anywhere else he had lived. He had come to terms with the fact that they had treated him more like a roommate instead of family.
I was horrified. I cried.
There’s no reason for that kind of behavior – especially from a family that knows how rough these kids have had it and are supposedly offering their home to help nurture these kids.
I’ve never understood how anyone could be so cruel, unthinking and selfish toward a child. No one can control where they’re born and no one should be punished for their imperfect circumstances.
Foster-adoption could be one of the most socially conscious acts anyone can do. Everyone deserves to be loved.
(Adding to this list of famous people who have been adopted: Superman, Babe Ruth and actress Kristin Chenoweth)
I could have kissed a coworker and I nearly broke down and cried when she gave me a compliment on my hair and dress the other day. “You always look so put together,” she smiled as we passed.
My heart stopped. What!? Ah, please say that again.
For one, I didn’t even remember what I was wearing. I had to look down to make sure there was no crusty squash puree or milk splattered on me. And, these days, squeezing the muffin top into my pre-baby clothes isn’t so pretty, but I can fake it some days. Yes, I have a mirror at home and I run right past it most days. And, I’ll be honest, showering and brushing my hair feels like a luxury. “Calgon, take me away” – for shiz.
From the moment I wake up to “MOM!!! I want cereal …. Please,” I am running. A mom’s job is constant: There is the reading of stories, the making of meals, including diner, putting Barbie’s dress on for the fifth time in the day, cleaning up the house, paying of bills, changing of diapers, possibly time to grab some groceries, exercising, playing hide and seek, and finally, I get around to eating my apple and praying for the clock to tick to naptime. Before I know it, it’s time to throw on whatever I can find, slap on some makeup and pin up my hair or say screw it and let it ride the wind. I get to work just before 4 p.m. most days.(I hope no one looks at me. Do I have matching shoes? Crap, I forgot my lunch again.) Sometimes, it seems like I’m just catching my breath when I sit down to the computer to begin my work day.
What the heck was I doing with all that free time before kids? LOL
Her big brown eyes darted at me and grew larger with surprise. Her smile was priceless. That was the moment after I told my toddler daughter that our living room floor was an ocean and there was a shark, so she’d better jump on the couch boat for safety.
She grabbed my hand and jumped up with me onto the couch. She stared at the flood and laughed. When her eyes met mine, I felt I could read her thoughts. It’s like I blew her mind that I could see something that wasn’t really there and she knew it was all for fun.
To all of you, I just seem plain bat-crap crazy. But to my kid, I am amazing, silly and adventurous.
Since she was conceived, I’ve been singing silly songs that I’ve proudly made up on my own. My favorite is my version of R&B singer Kellis’ “Milkshake” song, which I can’t really detail the lyrics for this family/newspaper blog. But I’ll give you a hint: Breast-feeding!
It’s been fun coming up with ways to make my kids laugh and have “our” time. When I want to sweep or mop, I turn on the radio and dance while moving around the house. I put a washcloth under my daughter’s feet and teach her to scoot along to the music while she is inadvertently cleaning my kitchen floor. Pure genius.
I used to be a little embarrassed that my 3-year-old daughter can’t seem to sit still. Ever.
She smiles for what seems like 24-7. She likes to wave at everyone, say hello, play with everything, run around. She makes friends easy, and she scares off some of the timid tots. She’s the queen of our neighborhood. Even older kids are drawn to her aura.
Some people find high energy to be a good quality in a child; others not so much. To me, her energy is pretty normal for a kid. A parent just really needs to be patient and let go and be fun too.
Another mom asked me what to do for her high-energy child. My answer: keep your child active. Run that little sucker all over until he/she crashes for their nap.
My daughter will take a nap for an hour or two, if I do it right. We swim, kick a ball in the yard, walk around the neighborhood a few times. When grocery shopping, I’ll have her pick up non-breakable items and place them into the basket. She is overjoyed to help.
Ah, to have her energy all day!! Right?
It is a trade off. I get a lot of exercise with her and she helps pump me up for my night.
Today, she tried to copy me during my aerobic workout in the living room. She made it much more fun than if I had done it on my own. She makes me laugh. She’s a blast.
I say that as my eyes begin to droop during my last few moments on the clock at work.
Is it bedtime yet?! Ha!