Harvard Psychologists Say: Parents Who Raise ‘Good’ Kids, Do These 5 Things!

Another great article published by Harved Pyschologists.

I’m a firm believer in the 5 points they make. I think we all have our own parenting styles views and opinions in life but I think it’s safe to say these are the basic fundamentals. It’s amazing how much there is to think about when you have a child. You can do it by making sure it starts with you because that is where our children learn from. Us. 

Again spending quality time with your little ones. They are only young once and I want to spend as much time as I possibly can with our little girl. By singing songs with her, reading books, helping her work on the new skills she is learning at the moment which would be crawling or walking which ever she decides to surprise us with first. Which means spending most of my day bent over holding her hands for balance so she can practice walking everywhere. My back aches but she won’t need me to help her once she’s mastered how to walk because she’ll be trying to run and climb stairs and I’ll be chasing after her. I know I’m extremely blessed to be able to spend her first year with her to see her through all these important milestones and one I’ll never get back. So I’m making the most of ever minute I get with her during the day especially while the weather is good. 

Being a role model. I couldn’t agree more with this. My moms famous lasts words were always do as I say and not as I do, I laughed and still do because I believe that actions speak louder than words. Monkey see, monkey do. My mother was a great role model and it’s because of her I am half the woman I am today. She taught me to cook, clean, take pride in myself and the things that I do. I always say to friends and family. There is always something to be taken from a unpleasant experience. You learn from your mistakes and admit when you are wrong. Look for solutions to problems or issues. Pick yourself up and dust yourself off as I would say and try again. Remember to do the same with your little ones. They see everything you do and say. So think before you speak for words can not be taken back once they have been said and make sure you don’t do anything you wouldn’t want them doing. 

Teaching them values. Now this is something that always makes me think about my father and how successful he has been in life. He words to me the day I left home always stuck with me and were my biggest motivation in life to succeed and do well. To treat others the way I would like to be treated and to treat everyone with respect. To think about other people’s feelings and emotions. To be a reliable and responsible person that people can depend and rely upon. It goes a long way in life. By making us help around the house to earn our pocket money you soon learned the value of money and learned to appreciate the things you have. 

Teach them Gratitude. Now this is one thing I practice every day in my life and one thing I learnt on my path to happiness. The more grateful you are, the happier you are. The more you focus on the positive thing in life the more you attract into your life. I think I have learned some valuable lessons in life that have taught me to think twice, be wise and never to take anything for granted or to expect anything from anyone in life. But when you are kind and generous out of the goodness and kindness of your heart people will do the same for you. Just never expect it. 

Show them the bigger picture. To me that would be doing all the above. Be kind and considerate of others. Don’t be judgemental because you don’t know what struggles the other person is going through. Empathise with others. 

I don’t think these are that different to how our parents grew up and what we were taught growing up so let’s do the same and make sure we still have good children in this world. 

Harvard Psychologists Say: Parents Who Raise ‘Good’ Kids, Do These 5 Things!

A healthy lifestyle means a healthy balanced child 

What a great article on creating the right balanced lifestyle for your child/children. I couldn’t agree more on all the points made in this article by the therapist who wrote it. 

This is exactly what I am like and will continue to be like with our little girl. I believe that that we should be present in the moment with our little ones, phones are used when baby is sleeping and tv time is limited to an hour a day if the weather is miserable. 

I’m currently enjoying the amazing weather we are having and spend every moment outdoors from the time our little girl wakes up. Play in the shade. Sing songs, have a dance with them. Read a book. Take a swim. Play outside in the fresh air on the grass with the dogs. Swing. Get messy. 

As our little girl gets older she will most definitely help around the house like we did as children. It teaches responsibility. Packing toys away. Helping in the kitchen with dishes, cooking, doing laundry and chores. We sit down to breakfast, lunch and dinner when we can as a family but always together even if it’s outside in the good weather. Having a picnic when it’s hot. 

Have a read to see what the therapist has to say. I couldn’t agree more with everything she has to say. 

Parenting what are we doing to our children.

What if all I want is a mediocre Life

Such a lovely article that I can relate too in some ways. Although I love my life and live the life I love. I’m not crazy about a life that is constantly on the go and filled with endless things to do that I don’t get to enjoy the finer things in life, relax and take time to just do things as a family. The life I always wanted is a family life. Surrounded by close friends and family. A life I get to share and enjoy with my amazing partner and father to our beautiful baby girl. 

Like taking a year out of my career to spend with our daughter and watch her grow and care for her.  Just watching her in awe when she plays, sleeps and learns new things. Cheering her on. Taking pride in our home and caring for her and us as a family making a life filled with love and happiness. Playing with the dogs and taking them for walks. This is enough for me. Making the most of special occasions and making them special and something to remember. 

That doesn’t mean we don’t enjoy enjoy socialising with friends, eating out, taking pride in our home, reading, cooking, going on holidays to beautiful countries together. It just means that I’m happy to live the path I have chosen. The way I want too. With out the stress or worry of trying to keep up with the rat race and what everyone else thinks is socially acceptable. We do what makes us happy. 

Creating and achieving goals to strive for that are meaningful and exciting. I have lived an enjoyable and exciting life so far but my priorities have changed and I am happy living the life we have chosen. Are you? 

Mediocre Life

Helping little ones with big emotions

How many of us have had issues or trouble dealing with emotions? Jealousy, sadness, anger and happiness are all emotions. We’ve all been through these emotions at some stage in our life. How we choose to deal with these emotions is what makes us stronger, wiser and grow as a person. 

How quick are you to react to a situation, only to take a moment to reflect and realise that maybe we could have dealt with the situation a little differently. Would it have changed the outcome? 

Now think about your little one, who has no life experience and only beginning to learn about the world they live in and how to cope with all these new feelings and emotions, which are new to them. They need and rely on us to show them and help them to cope with and deal with all these new emotions. 

It really is thought provoking for me as a mother to read some of these articles and to see things from a different prospective and it can also be daunting in the same breathe to think you really do need to be the best you can be if you’re going to help your little one blossom and grow into a well balanced young individual. To know that they can come to you and trust you to help them when they need you most. To think before you act or speak because words can’t be taken back once they’ve been spoken. They can only be forgiven. 

Here’s a great article on Helping little ones with big emotions

Positive gentle parenting. 

How many of us forget that toddlers are only young little people learning about the world that they live in and that it is up to us to help them grow and learn.  

These words really resonate with me maybe because I’m a firm believer that we need to help our children grow,  “it wasn’t my job to make him feel bad enough that he’d act better, but to help him feel valued, accepted, validated and wholeheartedly loved so that he could be his good, compassionate, kind, true self.”

When your toddler defies you, love is the answer

Planning babies 1st Birthday & Christening.  

So I’ve been caught up in planning our little girls 1st Birthday which is 2 days before my birthday but will be celebrated on the day of my birthday. 

So a joint mother daughter celebration of her first year and our first year of parenthood. I couldn’t think of a better way to spend it. 

Although it won’t be anything over the top it will definitely be special. I’m super excited and have found a cute little outfit for her to wear. A personalised baby grow and pink tutu and headband because I love to dress her up all girly and frilly. Making the most of it while I can. I still can’t believe she’s almost a year old. Where has the time gone? She’s only just started clapping her hands today before her bath to me singing if you’re happy and you know it, clap your hands. 

I’ve gone for a cute bunny theme 🐰🥕 and have started creating a little video to play with our favourite bedtime song. Definitely not a lullaby but she loves it and cuddles up really close to me when she watches it. I’ve got my sister in South Africa making the cutest birthday poster for her which I intend to frame and put up in her room of all the things she can do and loves.  I’ve found some cute little things to make her day super special and some great treats for the little ones and of course some bubbles for us mothers to celebrate my actual birthday and her first year of life. 

My father will be over from Australia to celebrate all of this with us which I am super excited about. So have planned her Christening for the day after. So have had to find a dress for her to wear for that too. 

It’s amazing how much time and effort goes into all the planning and the finer details of it all. Something I truly love doing. I’m really excited about the letters for the time capsule which she will open on her 18th birthday 🎉. 

The Myth of Good Babies…

I loved this article and couldn’t agree more, our children need us to advocate for them and to respond to their cues. Things have changed a lot from the days our parents grew up but that doesn’t mean we aren’t able to raise well balanced children by being responsive parents.

I’m glad I never read Baby books on what babies should be doing, trust your instincts use guidelines because every baby is unique… 

The Myth of Good Babies 

Best friends at last…

Seeing these two together like this makes my heart melt. I think I’ve seen so many photos like these and always hoped that one day our dogs and children would have a close bond and love each other as much as we love them. 

While I was pregnant I read articles about bringing home your baby and introducing them to your beloved fur babies. I’ve heard of many stories where children have been hurt by dogs which makes me so angry and sad in the same breathe. 

Firstly why was no one supervising them together? Both children and dogs need to understand and respect each other’s space. Parents need to teach baby not to pull their beloved fur babies coat and to correct the behaviour when it happens. You also need to be able to reassure your beloved dog that your little one is only just learning to be a little more tolerant and correct any untoward behaviour immediately. If our little girl tugged at my Yorkies coat our Yorkie would either turn around quite quickly to see who was inflicting pain or making her feel uncomfortable or she would run out of the room. The same goes for meal times. The dogs needs to keep their distance and baby needs to stay away from the dogs food and bowls when they are eating. 

When we first brought our little girl home my Yorkie was so happy to have her mama home again but now there was a little person that was taking all mommies attention away from her. I don’t think she was too impressed to begi with but slowly started sniffing our her new little sister. That soon changed to sleeping beside her when she slept. Heaven forbid our little girl poop or fart. 😜😂 Missie would run a mile and quite disgusted too that this little person just pooped and stinks too. Lol. Then we entered the next phase, our little girl was beginning to move her arms and legs and Missie just wasn’t having any of it. She just wasn’t interested in being any where near those little hands that would grasp a handful of fur or be kicked accidentally by moving feet so stayed just an inch away at all times, unless baby cried. Then it was either sniffing out of concern or leaving the room. Which made me laugh. 

When our little girl was able to understand a bit more I would start explaining and showing her how to pet the dogs and correcting her if she pinched or pulled their fur. I think constant perseverance and patience of showing our little girl how to pet our dogs and where to pet them as well as gentle correction when she pulled and then reassuring our dog that it was a mistake and we were sorry, giving her a good rub or pat and making sure she was okay has paid off. 

The two of them now play together so nicely. Still under my close watchful eye and supervision. All it takes it once fall or one wrong grasp of the ball grabbing a handful of fur along with it could make my Yorkie snap out of self defence. As much as my Yorkie loves toddlers and older children, she also has her limits. 

Watching our little girl throw the ball for Missie my Yorkie and missie bring it back to her to throw again is just the sweetest thing ever. It makes my life easier too. They keep each other entertained. I’m not having to split my time with Missie when Mia goes down any more which makes life so much easier and fun. 

I always believe that no matter how gentle your dogs are you should always supervise any play and if your dog ever shows any signs of aggression to intervene immediately and get a dog trainer to help correct any issues. 

Special Bedtime Routines…

It’s amazing how much love you can have for one tiny little person. How you thought you knew what love was before you had a baby. My furbaby, Missie, a Yorkie, was my first love, who I love and adore and has brought me so much love, laughter and happiness and been there for me through the good and the bad and has licked my tears when I’ve lost a loved one or had a really bad day. She’s super intelligent, has the cutest little quirks but having a baby and the love in your heart is on a completely different level of love altogether. 

Our little girl is only 9 and a half months old and already becoming independent and headstrong but a real little softie and such gentle natured little soul. A real little mommies girl and proud to say it but she is also daddies little girl and loves him very much. She has the cutest little quirks and sassy little tantrums when she can’t have what she wants. I know that tantrums are because they aren’t able to express or communicate exactly what they want or how they feel, so they act out in the only way they know how.  It’s amazing how intelligent they are already at such a young age. 

The days are long, and the months and years go by too fast. As you watch them grow and change before your very eyes. It feels like only yesterday she was born.  We have truly been blessed with our beautiful little girl. She’s healthy, content and a happy little girl who’s full of love and effection especially with me. I’m not going to lie, it makes me feel proud and happy that she feels she can be so loving and affectionate towards me at such a young age because I know these cuddles might not last forever, so I’ll make the most of them for as long as I can. 

So whilst I’m enjoying my realisation that our little girl is now obviously aware that in the evenings she goes for a longer period of time without me. Which makes me a little bit sad because I would happily share our bed with her as well as her daddy and our two dogs but we’d need a bigger bed as a king just isn’t big enough and secretly I do also enjoy being able to just spread out and sleep at night. 

The last two weeks routines have been a little different. As we spent a week with daddies family down the coast, so she didn’t see daddy for a week before bedtime but she also wouldn’t settle in her cousins camp cot, so we shared the bed for a week which meant she slept with me at night. Which was amazing. I loved every minute of it. She was away from her home comforts so bedtimes and naps were a little different. Then she was unwell for a couple days, which is only the 4th time she’s ever been unwell. I believe that’s down to breastfeeding and all the benefits that go along with it. She is also currently going through a mental leap, learning about sequences. This is also known to distrupt sleep, as well as teething, sleep regressions, growth spurts. You get the idea. Although none of these were the reason for her unsettled behaviour. 

My question was… so why is she able to go down for naps on her own with no issues, fussing or moaning during the day but bedtime has now become an challenge. She sleeps through at night. So to me that means there’s a reason for her behaviour but couldn’t put my finger on it. So I asked a very close friend and my other half what their thoughts were? Well, they both said the exact same thing. She knows she only sleeps twice a day for 3/4 hours and then she wakes up again to play with me and do things together but at bedtime she has the whole night to get through before she wakes up to see me again. So she wants more cuddles and time with me before she goes to sleep and just like that it all made sense to me. My heart swelled a little more. 

I’ve been fortunate enough to take a year off from my career to spend with our little girl and watch her grow up and look after her and it’s moments like these thank make it even better. Something I will never get back. She is only ever going to be this young once and for a short time so to me, it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity and has been the biggest blessing of my life, to be able to spend every minute of it with her and watch her grow. 

I guess bedtimes will spent together a little longer and a little more special while she lies in my arms and I rock us in the rocking chair, singing our favourite song to her. Reading her more stories and having some extra cuddles and love after our bath together. 

They say little girls are a mothers best friend but with out the amazing father she has this would never have been a possibility. There’s always something to be grateful for and always worth the scarfices you make to take a year off.