Archive for February, 2013

15 Rules New Soccer Moms Should Follow

February 26th, 2013 by admin

It’s exciting watching your kids play soccer for the first time. As they progress, you probably find yourself become more immersed in the game as well. Then, when they really get into it, it can become a little harrowing because you realize you are becoming a soccer mom. Don’t be ashamed of that title! Live it up and enjoy those games with your kids.

  1. Learn the Game – When you don’t understand the rules of the game, it’s more difficult to cheer your little ones on. So, get cracking on learning the basics of soccer. This will also come in handy if your child doesn’t completely understand it yet either. You can sit down with her and explain what the different positions are and what penalties mean.
  2. Don’t Take It More Seriously Than Your Kids – Almost nothing is worse than that parent standing on the sidelines yelling at the referee for a “bad call,” especially when the kid is beet red with embarrassment. If your child realizes that he stepped out of bounds or made an illegal play, he knows he should be sitting out or is deserving of that penalty. Shouting and drawing more attention to the mistake only breeds humiliation and resentment.
  3. Remember That You are Not the Coach – Always remember that you are not the coach. For one thing, the actual coach will appreciate it. There is a difference between cheering for your child and coaching her. When she’s out on the field, she needs to be able to hear what her coach is telling her so that she can run the correct play without worrying about disobeying you if your opinions don’t match up.
  4. Celebrate in Your Own Way – Everyone has a way to celebrate victories. Create one for yourself and your child. It’ll be a treasured memory when he gets older and looks back on his days as a young soccer player.
  5. Remember That Loss Happens – Keep in mind that every team loses at some point. When it happens to your favorite team of pint-sized players, don’t be harsh toward your child, the coach or the referee. It’s a fact of life that things don’t always go as planned. The loss of a game is also a great opportunity for helping kids understand that losing sometimes is a fact of life that can be overcome.
  6. Keep a First Aid Kit Handy – Soccer can be a bit brutal. Chances are, your kid will get kicked occasionally or will sustain a few cuts and bruises along the way. Make a habit of having a basic first aid kit nearby. Those multicolored bandages will come in handy.
  7. Clear Your Schedule – Brand new soccer moms may not realize how many afternoons, evenings and mornings can be filled with practices and games. So, make sure you keep your schedule open for all of the events and practices. You’ll want to be there for your kid as often as you can, and he will appreciate having you there.
  8. Get Used to Doing Laundry – No sport is clean, but soccer produces some of the dirtiest clothes imaginable. Grass stains, mud and sweat will cake your kid’s clothes. You’d better get used to doing the laundry a little more often than you did before you were a soccer mom.
  9. Ignore the Stereotypes – There may be a negative stereotype attached to “soccer moms,” but you don’t have to be that person. If you drive a van, so what? Don’t let the negativity of others get you down. Just remember, you are there to cheer on your child, not worry about what others think.
  10. Keep Snacks Handy – Running around will work up an appetite. Keep healthy snacks handy for your child to nibble on after a game or practice.
  11. Be the Hydrating Machine – Hydration is the key element to any form of exercise. Make sure your child stays properly hydrated throughout games and practices. No one wants to rush to the hospital for dehydration.
  12. Be Open to New Friends – You just met a whole new group of parents that you may never have met otherwise. Be open to becoming friends with them. You’ll be seeing each other a lot during the soccer season and you all share at least one common interest.
  13. Reinforce Rules about Not Kicking Balls Inside the House – If you don’t want broken lamps scattered around your house, you might want to reinforce any rules you may have about no kicking balls indoors. It’s easy on a rainy day for your child to be tempted to kick the ball around due to boredom, but there’s a time and a place for that, and it’s not inside.
  14. Encourage, Don’t Discourage – Always be a positive force for your child. If they lose a game, keep it upbeat. If they are called out of a game, turn it around so they can see the positive side of the situation.
  15. Think About the Off Season – Keep in mind that during the winter months, there are often indoor soccer teams available for kids to join. So, if your kid doesn’t have a winter sport she plays, just take her to an indoor soccer practice. She’ll love it!

25 Blogs with Family-Friendly Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

February 20th, 2013 by admin

While everyone knows that St. Patrick’s Day is a holiday, it’s unlikely that many know the story behind St. Patrick’s Day.  In a nutshell, a man named Patrick converted a large group of Irish people from Paganism to Christianity and was made a Saint.  Now considered the patron saint of Ireland, St. Patrick used the shamrock as the symbol of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  The color green is used because of the rich green hills that are found all over Ireland.  You may be wondering how St. Patrick’s Day turned into a day for drinking, and there is a reason for that too.  St. Patrick told a bar owner who was cheating his customers by pouring short glasses of liquor that there was a demon in his basement and that the only way to be rid of it was to be generous.  After that, St. Patrick said that everyone should celebrate with some of the hard stuff on St. Patrick’s Day. However, the holiday isn’t solely reserved for those of legal drinking age; there are plenty of family-friendly things to do to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day too.  Check out these 25 blog entries to find craft projects to make with the kids, decorations for your home, recipes to make for your family and other activities to do as well.

Crafts

Make these simple crafts with your kids as part of your celebration of St. Patrick’s Day.  This often overlooked holiday can be really entertaining if you make a point to celebrate it just like you would other holidays with special crafts, decorations and food.  These five blog posts will share some craft projects you can enjoy with your kids.

Decorations

Up your house’s festivity factor this St. Patrick’s Day by decorating in plenty of green and gold. Some of these decorating ideas are appropriate for younger children, while others are better suited for the older kids.  Get together as a family and enjoy some creative time together decorating your home.

Meals

All things green are up for grabs on St. Patrick’s Day.  What, you don’t think your kids will be excited about spinach and kale and other green leafy food?  No problem! Just make regular food green instead and see what the kids think of it.  It doesn’t have to be just for dinner, enjoy these five blogs that have breakfast, lunch and dinner ideas.

Desserts

While green is definitely the star color for St. Patrick’s Day, it isn’t all confined to just that color. After all, you can’t forget about the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  Make some rainbow inspired desserts instead of just green ones this year.  For some inspiration check out these five blog posts.

Activities

What kind of things can you do as a family or with the kids for St. Patrick’s Day?  Some cities have St. Patty’s Day parades, so you might see if your city is having one.  Or you might decide to have a party for the kids in the neighborhood.  Take a look at these five blog articles for some ideas on activities that your kids or your family might enjoy.

30 Blogs Helping Parents Care for Their Babies Better

February 13th, 2013 by admin

Once you have children, caring for your baby becomes your top concern, but it’s impossible to ever feel like you really know everything about providing the best care.  How can you possibly figure it all out?  The good news is that you don’t have to, because these 30 bloggers have done the legwork for you.  For questions about sleeping, feeding, safety and several other common concerns, check out these blog posts.

Sleeping

You have a newborn, so sleep is probably a foreign concept to you right now, but with the help of these five blog entries you might find some tips to get your baby to sleep longer, so you are able to sleep longer too.  And who couldn’t stand a little more sleep?

Feeding

You likely have a lot of questions surrounding the feeding of your baby, especially as you begin to expose your baby to new foods.  When is it okay to start adding cereal? Should I make my own baby food?  These and other questions are answered in these five blog posts.

Safety

Keeping your baby safe is probably your top priority, though one that comes with its own set of concerns.  It’s a little scary being totally responsible for a new little life.  For helpful tips and guidance, check out these five blogs.

Childcare

You need to go back to work and you are dreading leaving your baby with someone else.  How do you know you are making the right decision?  These bloggers have had to make similar decisions and are posting some helpful advice for other new moms.

Health

Babies aren’t born with a lot of immunities, they develop over time.  If you breastfeed, they may get some of your immunities, but how do you keep your baby healthy?  Here are some tips from bloggers who have faced the same thing.

Skincare

The phrase “soft as a baby’s bottom” has been used for years to describe silky soft skin, but what happens when your baby gets chapped?  To avoid chapped skin and other skin irritations take a look at these five blog posts.  Your baby will be glad that you did.

30 Blogs for Parents Who Love to Throw Elaborate Kids’ Parties

February 12th, 2013 by admin

Whether you’re an event-coordinating enthusiast from way back who’s just starting to turn your attention to party planning for the pint-sized set or a parent who only cares for parties if the guest list is comprised of youngsters, there’s no denying the fact that putting together a shindig for kids is a blast. These 30 blogs entries are filled with interesting and innovative ideas for kids’ parties and can prove to be very valuable resources for all of your future soirées.

Party Planning

General party planning tips often fall to the wayside in favor of highlighting nifty, handcrafted decorative touches or the perfectly decorated cupcake. However, the basics can’t be forgotten. These five blog entries cover the essentials of party planning for the major events and holidays in a child’s life.

Cute Food

Turning party snacks and meals into edible art not only adds a touch of whimsy to any party, but can also encourage kids to be a bit more adventurous in terms of eating. The ideas in these five blog entries can help you get started on your quest to create the most adorable edibles on the block and can serve as inspiration for your own food art in the future.

Party Games

No party for the smaller set is complete without plenty of games and diversions. While free play definitely has its merits, a well-planned party with a general schedule that includes structured activities will allow you to maintain a bit more control over the tone of the party and stave off some feuds over toys and unstructured play. These five blog entries are a treasure trove of party game ideas and can help you find the perfect activities for your child’s fete.

Decoration Ideas

Part of the fun in planning a party is deciding on the theme and then decorating accordingly. If you’re a crafty parent who loves to turn out your own decorative creations, the ideas in these five blog entries can serve as a great jumping off point for inspiration. Remember: you’re only limited by your imagination!

DIY Party Favors

Kids love party favors, especially those that are a thematic match to the party they’re attending. The best way to make sure that your favors work with the chosen theme of your party is to make them yourself, a task you can complete with relative ease after perusing the ideas offered by these five bloggers.

Kids’ Party Etiquette

Part of planning the perfect party or accompanying your child to a party he’s invited to is making sure that the little guests or guest of honor that you’re responsible for have a basic idea of party etiquette. If you’re a bit in the dark about proper party manners yourself when it comes to shindigs for kids, these five blog entries can help you avoid any major breach of etiquette.

20 Blogs with the Best Make Your Own Valentine Ideas

February 3rd, 2013 by admin

There are so many creative ideas out there for making your own valentines that there’s no need to buy pre-made options.  Your child can put their own spin on the valentines, making them personalized and unique.  Together with your child, you can make several different kinds of valentines.  The easiest ones are the ones that you can print at home and cut apart.   If you want to get a little more involved, you can make regular card style valentines with sayings that your kids pick out.   Or, if you want to get even more creative, there are all sorts of 3-D cards that will really ‘WOW’ the recipient.  And if you want to be more generous with the treat, you can make bag toppers and give out goodie bags full of treats to all of your valentines.  Take a look at these 20 blog entries to get some ideas.

Printables

If you are trying to save some money or you forgot to get valentines and are trying to put something together last minute, these printable valentines would be ideal for you.  You can print them off on your own printer on cardstock and cut them apart with scissors or a paper trimmer.  Have your child write their name on each card and you are ready to roll.  Check out these five blog posts to see what your choices are.

Card Style

If your kids want to step it up a notch, they can make folding cards.  This might appeal to some kids because they will look more like the type of cards you can buy at a store.  You can get two cards from one piece of 8 ½ by 11 cardstock.  If you want to put the cards in envelopes, you will need A2 size envelopes.  These five blogs will go into more detail on how to make some handmade cards.

3-Dimensional

Help your kids really make a statement this Valentine’s Day by creating 3-D valentines for their friends and teachers.  Some of these 3-D valentines look complicated, but are actually very simple to create.  Don’t worry that you will have to do everything, because these are all kid-friendly crafts that your kids can definitely help with or even complete on their own, depending on their age and skill level.  These five blog articles have unique valentine ideas that will have the other kids raving.

Bag toppers

Tired of the same old valentines where you try to tape on the candy? Why not do a treat bag with a topper instead?  You can let your child fill the bags and cut the toppers.  The kids might even be able to staple the toppers onto the bag if you help them.  These five blog entries will give you some printables and other ideas so that you can make your own treat bag toppers for this year’s valentine exchange.  These are so simple to do; you may end up giving them to all of the teachers.

Now that you’ve got some ideas, grab some paper, grab the kids and get to work on your valentines!  There’s no time like the present.