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How To Prevent Lost Items and Improve Organization With Name Labels for Kids

The daily chaos of school and extracurricular activities can turn any parent into a detective, constantly on the lookout for lost items. From backpacks to water bottles, kids have a knack for misplacing their belongings, causing frustration for both parents and little ones. In this whirlwind of confusion, high-quality name labels emerge as the unsung heroes, ensuring that lost items find their way back home and promoting a sense of organization in the midst of chaos. 

Preventing Lost Items

Every parent has experienced the sinking feeling of realizing their child has lost something valuable. It might be a favorite jacket, a school textbook, or a cherished toy. Apart from the financial burden of replacing these items, the emotional toll on both the parent and the child can be significant. Lost items can cause stress, disrupt routines, and lead to a sense of disorganization, especially during the busy school days.

High-Quality Name Labels

High-quality name labels act as tiny beacons of hope in the world of lost items. These labels, often made from durable materials like waterproof vinyl or iron-on fabric, are designed to withstand the wear and tear of a child’s daily activities. Unlike generic labels or markers that fade away after a few washes, high-quality name labels stay intact, ensuring that your child's belongings are easily identifiable.

Preventing Mix-ups and Confusion

In school settings, where multiple children might have similar items, high-quality name labels play a crucial role in preventing mix-ups and confusion. A well-labeled lunchbox or a backpack stands a much better chance of finding its way back to its rightful owner. This not only saves parents from constantly replenishing lost items but also teaches children a sense of responsibility for their belongings. 

Promoting Independence

When children know that their items are clearly labeled, they gain a sense of independence. They can confidently identify their own belongings, which is especially important in school environments where personal responsibility is encouraged. This independence not only boosts their self-esteem but also instills a sense of organization and orderliness from an early age.

Customization and Personalization

High-quality name labels, including innovative options like name stamps for clothes, provide an invaluable solution to the age-old problem of lost items. In the whirlwind of childhood activities, these labels emerge as unsung heroes, offering parents a sense of peace and assurance. The beauty of these labels lies not just in their durability and functionality but also in the myriad ways they can be customized to suit a child's unique preferences.

Cost-Effective Solutions

While high-quality name labels might seem like a small investment, they are incredibly cost-effective in the long run. Consider the cumulative cost of replacing lost items throughout a school year. From clothing to stationery, these expenses can add up significantly. High-quality name labels drastically reduce the frequency of these replacements, saving parents both money and the hassle of constantly replacing lost items.

In the whirlwind of childhood activities, high-quality name labels offer parents a sense of peace. The knowledge that their child's belongings are clearly marked and easily identifiable provides reassurance. It's a small but powerful tool that promotes organization, independence, and responsibility in children while saving parents from the frustrations of lost items. Investing in high-quality name labels is not just about preventing lost items; it's about instilling valuable life skills and fostering a sense of orderliness that will benefit children throughout their lives. So, equip your child's belongings with these tiny yet transformative labels and enjoy the peace of mind that comes with a well-organized, labeled life.

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How to Prepare Your Kids for Relocating

Deciding to move is a big deal for any family but especially for a household with children. Everyone understands and processes change differently so there is no “one-size-fits-all” when it comes to formulating a plan to make moving easier on your kids. Your children will react differently depending on their age and personality; you must respect their feelings and their emotional process. Here are 5 ways to help to make moving easier for your family for you to try. 

1. Have A Family Meeting

Have a family meeting to ensure that you are all on the same page about your relocation. Your children must understand that it is not a punishment and that they haven’t done anything wrong. If your relocation is because of finances, don’t project your stress onto your children – instead make them focus on the exciting opportunity of starting a whole new chapter in a new place. Allow your children to be part of this by letting them help pick out a house from the wide selection of Daybreak homes.

2. Get Them Excited

As stressful as moving house is, especially during a pandemic, you need to get the kids on board with the entire of relocating. They are going to have their fears and doubts and as a parent, it is your job to reassure them that everything will be great. Please note I didn’t just say “fine” – you need to work on getting your kids excited about all of the opportunities they will have in their new home and neighborhood. Get them to think about all the fun and exciting times ahead. If they have something to look forward to then they will be excited about the move.

3. Make Your Children Feel Included

If your children feel like they are not in control of a situation, they could act out. The last thing you want when dealing with the stress and pressure of orchestrating a move is to then also have to deal with tantrums and upset kids. You can make the move easier on your kids and ultimately your whole family by including them in smaller decisions like which room to pack and what to take with you. Give your children three boxes each, one for stuff they want to donate to the less fortunate, one for the items that are to be thrown away, and one for the things they want to keep.

4. Respect Their Feelings

Your children will experience understandable levels of angst when it comes to moving house, they are going to need to grieve the loss of the home they know, the neighborhood they know, and the friends they know. Be understanding of their feelings and how difficult it is for them to make this seismic change. It is also important to know that it can take your child up to six months to settle into their new life, so be patient – even after moving day.

5. Stick To Your Normal Schedule

One of the most effective ways to make moving easier on the kids is to make sure your stick to your normal routine/schedule – if dinner is at 7 pm then keep dinner at 7 pm, even when you’re crazy busy packing etc. This will help keep their sense of normalcy and comfort, the more at ease they are, the easier moving will be on all of you.
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Summer Reading Essentials From Nat Geo Kids + Giveaway

For many of us, summer break is already under way or is soon to come. During the summer break, there are several ways to keep your kids' brains engaged and active. Encouraging reading is a fantastic way to stimulate their minds, whether it's through a summer reading challenge or joining a local library program. Engaging in hands-on activities like arts and crafts, puzzles, and building projects can promote problem-solving skills and creativity. Encouraging them to explore nature through outdoor adventures, such as hiking or gardening, can foster curiosity and a deeper understanding of the world around them. Additionally, enrolling them in summer camps or workshops focused on science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM) can provide structured learning experiences and spark their interests in these fields. Lastly, limiting screen time and encouraging social interactions with friends and family can promote cognitive and emotional development. By incorporating a variety of activities, you can ensure a summer filled with fun and continued mental growth for your children.

There will definitely be times where kids have a lot of moments waiting in an airport, in the car, or even when they feel like they have nothing to do. Thankfully children's books from National Geographic are a perfect way to fill the time. It's even better when learning about animals is involved. I want to share some titles that your kids of many ages can enjoy this summer. *Please note that this post contains affiliate links. 


Little Kids First Nature Guide: Explore the Beach (ages 4-8, Flex-Bound, $9.99)

Make the most out of any trip to the beach wit this take-along nature guide that helps young children find, identify, and learn about the fascinating animals, plants, and other wonders to be found at the seashore. Young explorers discover a variety of cool creatures, shells, plants, and more at the beach, from crabs skittering across the sand to fish riding the waves to seagulls flying high in the sky. This sturdy take-along guide features:

  • Easy-to-understand profiles of a wide variety of plants and animals commonly spotted at the beach, as well as fan-favorites out in the waves like dolphins, seahorses, and jellyfish
  • Vibrant National Geographic photography that brings the subject matter to life and makes identification easy
  • “Check Me Out!” fact boxes that provide more information about each creature, including its size and color, where it’s found, and what it eat
  •  Gallery pages featuring various beach environments, such as tide pools and sand dunes
  • Cool fun facts sprinkled throughout
  • Simple text for reading aloud or for beginning readers
  • Games, activities, and tips for how and where to explore
  • Helpful glossary
  • Flexible binding for durability



Did you know that a giraffe’s eye is as big as a Ping-Pong ball? Or that about 19 million hot dogs are sold at major league baseball games every year? Or that there is only one bone in your body that’s not connected to another one?  This book is chock-full of fascinating facts, silly stats, and catchy little knowledge nuggets in all kinds of awesome categories, from amphibians to black holes to the gold rush.

Special features include Extreme Weirdness, Strange Places, What's the Difference, and more. Bold, colorful photographs in a supersized format and spectacular information create a winning combination for curious kids who can't wait to learn more about the world.


National Geographic Kids Almanac 2024 (ages 8-12, Paperback, $15.99)

The New York Times best-selling Almanac is packed with incredible photos, tons of fun facts, National Geographic exclusives, games, activities, and fascinating features about animals, science, nature, technology, and more. 


National Geographic Kids Personality Quizzes (ages 8-12, $9.99, Paperback)

What's your shark superpower? What kind of friend are you?

From weird and wacky (What stinky animal are you?) to thought-provoking and informative (What kind of explorer should you be? Which mountain should you climb?), there’s a personality profile for everyone in this totally unique book. Inside you'll find all kinds of quizzes: flow charts, multiple choice, this or that, and more and while you're at it, get to know about amazing animals, places, cultures, and even careers around the world!


Puzzle Book of the Ocean (ages 8-12, Paperback, $6.99)

Headed to the beach this summer?  Make the trip go by in a flash with this ultimate backseat boredom-buster!

Dive into pages and pages of crosswords, sudoku, word searches, mazes, quizzes, word scrambles, and spot the difference puzzles as well as fun facts and vibrant photos of fish, dolphins, sea turtles, and all sorts of ocean animals.  This book will have you swimming for hours through amazing information about the deep blue—just don’t forget to surface!



Adventure, danger, and a thrilling global mission await 12-year-old Cruz Coronado as he joins an elite school for explorers.

In this fan-favorite fiction series, Cruz leaves his tranquil home in Hawaii to join 23 talented kids from around the globe to train at the Explorer Academy with the world's leading scientists to become the next generation of great explorers. But for Cruz, there's more at stake. No sooner has he arrived at the Academy than he discovers that his family has a mysterious past with the organization that could jeopardize his future. In the midst of codebreaking and cool classes, new friends and augmented-reality expeditions, Cruz must tackle the biggest question of all: Who is out to get him ... and why?  Readers can get in on the excitement with puzzles and codes embedded throughout. Learn more here: https://kids.nationalgeographic.com/explorer-academy

GIVEAWAY

These titles are really great and will provide many hours of fun! They are all available on *Amazon, and make a great gift to family and friends. Thank you so much National Geographic Kids for the sample books, and for providing a set for a giveaway for one lucky Mom Files reader to win. Be sure to visit the National Geographic Kids website: http://kids.nationalgeographic.com/

If you are interested in winning a Prize Pack of these National Geographic Kids Books, enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
This giveaway ends on June 17, 2023 and is open to U.S. and Canada Residents only. Please note that Mom Files is not responsible for any lost or stolen prizes since our sponsor takes care of prize fulfillment. All opinions are my own. Thank you for stopping by today! 
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Summer Camp Essentials: Outdoor Health & Safety Checklist

Many kids are getting ready to head to camp this summer and enjoy the great outdoors – but coming down with a sunburn or a painful bug bite can easily put a damper on their day, and even cause long term illness. 

MedStar Health shares the checklist below to help parents pack the essentials for any outdoor adventure: 

Bug Spray 

Your kids will most likely explore spaces occupied by creatures such as ants, spiders, flies, bees, mosquitoes and ticks, which can cause harmful rashes, or serious illness (such as Lyme disease). Make sure they apply bug spray on their exposed skin and clothes before venturing outdoors. Children should also have long pants and long sleeved, lightweight clothing options to wear on hikes to help decrease the risk of insect bites. It is also important to teach your children how to check for ticks each night.

Calamine Lotion

Bug bites are very common during the summer months.  When bites occur despite use of bug spray, calamine lotion can be applied to ease itchiness and irritation.  Be sure your child knows to notify staff if there are any signs of infection, such as oozing, pain, increasing redness of the  area affected, so they can be seen and treated for a possible infection. 

Sunscreen 

A sunburn can creep up on you, especially during a hike! Medical experts recommend the use of sunscreen lotion with an SPF of 30 or higher for any extended outdoor activity. It’s also important to reapply sunscreen every two hours - more frequently if you’ve been sweating or swimming. 

Sunglasses

Sun exposure damages the eyes as well as the skin. The best way to protect your eyes is to wear sunglasses that provide 99-100% UVA and UVB protection. This will greatly reduce sun exposure that can lead to cataracts and other forms of eye damage.

Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen 

Sunburn can be painful and uncomfortable so acetaminophen or ibuprofen can be used to help alleviate the pain or discomfort.  Sun poisoning can cause a range of symptoms including headache, fever, nausea and fatigue so young campers should know to reach out to an adult if they have these symptoms along with a significant sunburn, as they might need additional treatment. 

First Aid Kit

Not only will a great first aid kit help you with injuries that commonly occur while out camping, but it can keep you prepared for survival situations that might arise while you are on your trip.

Refillable water bottle

Staying hydrated is extremely important, especially with increased outdoor activities over the summer.  Be sure your child knows to drink at least 3 bottles per day.  Help them get into the fun of having it with them all day by decorating it themselves with stickers and such.

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Can Video Games Actually Be Helpful to Kids?

Have you ever wondered if video games are harmful or actually helpful to kids? There are arguments on both sides for good reason. You can definitely have too much of a good thing, but are video games for kids that bad? 


No matter how much you try to escape it, technology is a huge part of everyday life. We rely on computers and smart phones for just about everything. Workplaces and schools require using computers. I remember when my kids were little, I was the anti-gaming mom. I only saw the negatives in it. It turned out that I was so wrong. I came to the realization that gaming can be a tool for learning. If your child is just starting out on the computer, gaming can help them learn more about the keyboard which aids in typing practice. That is how my son improved his typing skills. 

For younger kids, some games can help them perfect using the mouse properly and how to use the arrow keys. There are so many fun games for kids that help with matching, math, reading and just for having some downtime. I highly recommend Penguin Cafe Restaurant simulation game. It definitely helps with focus and coordination, while having fun. Your kid will have no idea they are learning! 


Can I tell you something? I enjoy playing computer games myself. I can play Solitaire for hours. It helps to keep my mind stimulated in a positive way. I am always trying to beat my previous score on each game. I need to try some other versions of Solitaire like my daughter does. 


Obviously, you don't want your child to be playing computer games for hours on end, so it is important to set time limits. You can even give them an incentive of extra gaming time if they did a good job in in school or got their chores done early. I have really changed my mind with gaming. It has been very beneficial for my son since he is in virtual school. His typing skills have greatly improved as well as his reading. As a parent, gaming can be a stress reliever. 

Do you have a favorite computer game? 
Shelly 
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How To Go on a Long Bike Ride With Kids

In recent years, several suburbs, towns and cities have created new bike-routes within their borders as a means to provide safe spaces for cyclists. At the same time, recreationally-minded groups have worked to form vast miles of smooth limestone and dirt trails nationwide. These developments expand opportunities for family bike rides that can include all ages. However, how do you prepare kids for relatively long days cycling, either as a passenger or pedaler? If you want to be sure your young child can stay on the saddle for a few hours, get into gear with these child-friendly cycling tips. 

Situating the Youngest Passenger

If you are planning to take an infant on a ride, age becomes the primary factor in whether you and they are ready for the first journey. You can place older infants in a trailer that you pull behind your bike if you are comfortable and they are physically ready. You should choose relatively smooth surfaces to avoid too much head jostling, and you should practice pulling the empty trailer several times before your baby’s first ride. Keep in mind, good comfort bikes can help you dramatically increase your trailer-pulling mileage. 

Carrying the Toddler

An older child may enthusiastically sit in a kids bike seat; options include those that attach to your handlebars, the middle of your bike or behind your seat. Any one of these seats can be a platform for creating a wonderful shared cycling experience. These choices require that your passenger has sufficient neck strength to keep the head stable and wears a helmet. And as with the trailer, practice riding with the bike seat empty initially.

Pulling the Young Child

As your child grows and develops leg strength, bump your cycling partner up to a co-pilot bike arrangement. Co-pilots, which look like bikes with the front wheel and fork removed, attach to the adult rider’s seat post. Because you pull these appendages, your child can pedal as much or as little as desired while keeping up. You can teach and encourage proper cadence, and your child will gradually adjust to sitting on a bike seat for an extended period of time. 

Riding With the Older Child

At some point, your child will be ready for the next bicycling stage. Whether you are considering hybrid bikes for sale or already have a comfortable cruiser, you can choose a kid’s model that can go the distance with your own cycle. To make sure your child can partner with you and other older riders on a long ride, follow some preparation guidelines:
  • Fit the bike appropriately to your child’s size
  • Purchase a multi-gear bike for hilly conditions
  • Teach proper pedaling cadence
  • Build endurance by systematically increasing distance
  • Pack water and snacks for any lengthy rides
The goal is to ensure your child embraces cycling without facing significant frustration along the way.
Bicycling is a natural family activity. It provides exercise, recreation and bonding experiences within a fun framework. If you manage cycling appropriately during each stage of a child’s development, you can ensure your youngsters will remain enthusiastic about family cycling for years to come.
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5 Ways Parents Can Teach Their Kids Important Money Lessons During the Holiday Season

The holiday season is especially fun for kids, but it also provides parents a great opportunity to teach their little ones important lessons about money. What are the best ways mom and dad can do this without their children losing interest?

Steve Siebold is a Certified Financial Educator (CFEd) and author of the book “How Money Works,” which is written on a level that even children can understand the basics of money. www.howmoneyworks.com


His 5 tips to help parents better explain money to their kids this time of year:

Invest any money they are gifted: When your children receive checks from relatives far away or if you decide to gift your children money as a holiday present, don’t just put it away in a savings account that will yield practically no interest. Teach them to invest their money so it can work for them. Show them the different places they can put that money, the potential for growth and risk for loss.

Let them get involved with budgeting: As you do your holiday shopping this year, involve your kids. Let them see how money work, how you create and stick to a budget. Explain to them the benefits of a budget, and how it prevents you from overspending. Be frank with them and show them that if you go over a budget, it impacts other important things you need money for.

Explain wants vs. needs: The holiday season is a great time to explain to your kids the difference between wants and needs. For example: they might want a Play Station 5, a new iPad or that new bicycle. Let them know a need is something like clothes, food, a place to call home and a bed to sleep in. Explain that there’s nothing wrong with “want” gifts, but that needs always supersede wants.

Teach them to think before spending: One of the biggest reasons so many people struggle with money is because they don’t think before they spend. That’s even more so during the holidays because Madison Avenue does a good job of convincing us of all the things we supposedly need to buy. Teach your kids to stick to logic when it comes to spending this time of year, and to leave their emotions on the shelf.

Teach them it’s better to give: Most children love waking up on Christmas morning to open up all those gifts under the Christmas tree. Use the holiday season to also teach your kids the importance of giving. Explain to them how it’s nice to help others in general, but especially this time of year. One of the greatest lessons you can share with your children is purchasing a gift for a child who wouldn’t otherwise receive one this holiday season.
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3 Great Ways to Involve Your Kids in a Second Wedding

Second weddings can be tricky. Sometimes they are the result of a tragedy, while other times they can be chalked up to mistakes from the past. No matter the situation, though, there is no reason to make it any less special. After all, this is the start of an amazing journey, and you want your special day to be great and memorable.


One additional complication, however, can come in the form of your kids. Especially for young children, they may be confused about what's going on. And kids of any age are likely to have some strange feelings about how their family is changing.

The best advice is to confront this head-on. Don’t let complex emotions bubble under the surface and turn into real issues. You want to treat your kids as smart people and try to explain everything that’s appropriate to say as clearly as possible. Certainly, this won’t always solve everything, but it is a needed step during the process of change.

And it will only be further solidified with actions. In general, it will be helpful to include your kids in your second wedding from the start. The following tips represent three of the best ways to get them involved and keep them from experiencing any unnecessary confusion.

1. Family Decision-Making

To help make sure all the kids — no matter their age — understand what's happening, you'll want to involve them as early in the process as possible. One great way is by including them in a few decisions from the get-go. Sit them down as you go through things like picking out the invitations and save the date cards. This will show them there is an actual day on the calendar when the change will take place. And that will help make it real in their minds.

2. Guest List Comfort

At the same time, you can also involve the kids in the guest list planning. Much like choosing and sending out invitations, this will further help reinforce the fact that this is an actual event that will take place a few months down the line. But it will also be comforting for them to see how many of their loved ones will be there. They may still be struggling with the change, but this shows them many of the people they know aren’t going anywhere. Many of the extended family and friends who have been constants throughout their life will be right there standing beside you.

3. Wedding Day Considerations

Of course, you also want to involve the children as much as possible on the wedding day itself. As many brides and grooms know, it’s often the young ring bearer and precious flower girls who the rest of the family gets the biggest kick out of seeing. Or, if they're old enough, they may even want to sit at the head table or say something during the reception. Go with your instincts, and no matter what, be sure to check in on them regularly throughout the day. They may be going through some emotions that come out all at once. That's why you need to be there for them, even if it’s easy to get caught up during what is supposed to be your event.

Second Time's the Charm

With any luck, your second wedding will go even better than the first. You've got some experience now after all, right? But while this may be another go-around for you, it might be new for your kids. At any rate, they will certainly be experiencing this event much differently than you.

Transparency and inclusion will make it easier for everyone. Involve the children as early on as possible when it comes to both picking and sending out invitations and save the date cards. Show them the guest list at the same time, so they can see who will be there. And be sure to watch for any problems or insecurities on the wedding day itself.

Kids are resilient and can handle almost anything. Honestly, it seems like they are tougher than adults sometimes. But they are still young, and they can struggle to understand mature subjects. So, be aware of that and try to help them along. That way, the start of your new relationship can be embraced by everybody in the family.
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What to Give Your Children for Christmas


It is not surprising that children get really excited about the prospect of waking up to find a load of presents neatly arranged under the Christmas tree and the big question you need to find the answer to is what gift items will you be wrapping for your children?

Your child’s tastes and preferences will often change from one year to the next and choosing gifts for 12-year-old boys, for example, will most likely prove to a different buying experience compared to buying for a girl of the same age.

There are also some other Christmas gift options to consider that won’t break the bank, so here are some suggestions to help you decide.
Photo by Mel Poole on Unsplash
Go for quality over quantity

It is worth remembering that kids can almost get overloaded with presents these days as they seem to get so many gifts compared to some previous generations.

You might find yourself struggling to find what could be classed as the perfect gift for your child and that could lead you to overspend and buy too many presents in your quest to get them exactly what they want.

Some parents like to follow a formula known as the 4 gift rule to help ensure that they buy certain items that fall into a category rather than randomly buying an assortment of things you think they will like.

The 4 gift rule is simple to follow and involves buying something they want, something they need, an item to wear, and something to read.
Photo by Євгенія Височина on Unsplash
It’s not all about money

You don’t have to spend fortunes on your kids to give them some nice Christmas gifts they will love and taking this route with some or all of your gift options will help teach your kids some valuable lessons at the same time.

If it is cold where you are you could maybe hire some ice skates or get a used pair from a thrift shop and give them the gift of spending some time skating with them and just hanging out together.

The gift of time shouldn’t be underestimated and those magical memories created when you do something fun together are priceless.

Be guided by their age

When you do want to put some presents under the tree it can be a real challenge to find a gift that is appropriate for their age and stage of development.

Teenagers are notoriously difficult to buy for and that is why the default option often tends to be a gift card, which is a bit boring and unimaginative.

A practical gift for a teen could be an external power station external battery, for example, as many kids of this age seem to manage to drain the battery in their smartphone at an alarming speed.

Another age example would be a ten-year-old child, who is often somewhere in between being a kid who still loves playing with toys and becoming a tween with more of a focus on more grown-up gifts.

Think about what gift would be appropriate for their age and then consider if that is where they are at with their development so you can adjust your choice of potential Christmas gifts accordingly.

Start planning for Christmas as early as possible and it should give you enough time to work out what the perfect gift would be for your child.

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Birthday Gift Ideas For Kids 10 And Under That Aren't Toys

Struggling with birthday gift ideas for kids under 10? We’ve got you covered!

You’d think with having the whole world at our fingertips that finding the perfect birthday gift for our little ones would be a piece of cake. With so many user-friendly apps and online stores with an abundance of toys and gifts to choose from, it’s almost as if you don’t have to put any thought into your shopping at all.

But isn’t that the problem? For consumers, everything is always well within reach or suggested to us via clever marketing. But what about a gift that really means something? A gift that won’t end up at the bottom of the toy box with all the other plastic toys that they own but don’t even play with…? Well, here you’ll find 5 of the most popular gifts for children under 10 years old and none of them are toys.

An Investment In Their Future

Sure, your kids can’t play with a savings accounts – not until they’re older anyway – but investing in their futures and putting something away for them to utilize when they’re older is a wonderful commitment and gesture of love. Check out Golden Eagle Coin for investment pieces as well as somewhere to buy silver bars, gold coins and other items, you can also get the latest information on items that will increase in value over time. Alternatively, speak to your local bank about an IRA or a savings account.


Lessons

Do you have a budding Picasso at home? Or even a mini Serena Williams? If your child has a passion or a hobby, why not help them take it a step further with some lessons in their favorite interest? Not only will it give them more confidence, but it could even take them down a career path when they’re older. In addition, joining things like dance schools, theatre groups or sports teams allows them to experience things like competitions or exhibitions, the value of teamwork, or focusing on tapping into their own creativity. It’s character-building, to say the least.


A Dress-up Box

All children enjoy dressing up as their favorite princess or superhero, but what about something more realistic? Simply go through your wardrobe at home and see if you have any items you can donate. Hats, scarves, trousers, shoes, bags, costume jewelry, dresses, gloves, etc. Or visit your local thrift shop and see what you can find. Let their imagination run wild!

A Charitable Donation

The gift of giving is a wonderful thing, especially to those less fortunate than ourselves. So, incorporating a donation as a gift will teach your children about charity, kindness and it will make them feel good. This could be sponsoring a child in a foreign country, helping to plant more trees, sponsoring an endangered animal or even adopting an animal at a local rescue center.


Time

They say the greatest gift you can give any child is your time. So, take a weekend and dedicate it to some quality time. Let your child decide where they want to go, what they want to do, and make sure you take plenty of photographs to document that time spent together. You can have a photo book made so your child can look back on those fun memories.

Do you have any other gift ideas to add to this list?
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Best Summer Activities For Kid's Growth & Development

Summer is known as that lazy, relaxing time of year. While all kids deserve a break, they still need structure and stimulating activities that nurture their growth and development. Do you need some tips to keep in mind when it comes to your kids this summer?

Vinay Saranga M.D. is a child psychiatrist and founder of Saranga Comprehensive Psychiatry (www.srangapsychiatrycom) and offers this advice:

Create A Summer Schedule: You don’t have to schedule something for every second of the day. The idea is to develop a predictable but flexible daily schedule that can help children thrive. Remember, sometimes boredom can be a trigger for bad behavior. The idea is to still have a routine and agenda, but know that it’s okay to be a little laid back when it comes to sticking to it.

Create A Calendar: Make it visible to your entire family. Write down daily activities and include a chore/activity chart. This helps children understand what’s expected of them. It also helps enrich their sense of responsibility and integrity all while building their confidence.
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Don’t Skip Reading: Reading should be part of their everyday routine this summer. Whether in the morning or before bed (or both), make it a priority to read with your kids. Of course, the goal of reading is to make it enjoyed. Get your child involved by going to a local library and scouting out the latest book by their favorite author.

Sleep Is Still Essential: Sleep, especially at a young age, is essential for healthy growth and brain development. We all benefit from a good night’s rest! Even if you extend bedtime during the summer, make sure your child is getting the recommended amount of sleep each night. Try not to get too far off of their school routine because it will be back in session before you know it!

Cut Back On Screen Time: Sometimes it’s too easy just to turn on the TV. When they’re not swimming or riding bikes, find something productive for them to do. Stock up on fun and educational activities that will help your kids continue to grow and learn over the summer break. Coloring books, crosswords, puzzles, and board games are all great ideas.

Some Downtime Is Good: Remember that long days at the pool/beach can cause exhaustion which leads to frustration and overwhelm. Figure out what the right amount of activity is to stimulate your child and incorporate enjoyable activities into their summer routine.
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Keep them social: Summer camps, group play and trips to the local playground are all ways to entertain children without screen time. Social settings often encourage imaginary play and creativity all while developing social skills that are essential for a child’s development.

Incorporate nature: Let nature be your inspiration this summer! Get your children outdoors for some fresh air. Plan a game of hide-and-seek or set up a nature scavenger hunt that will keep them entertained in a healthy way.

Make time for family: Our kids grow up so quickly, so make time to enjoy the summer as a family no matter how old your kids are. Whether planning a vacation out of state or simply a day trip to the beach, the best activities are enjoyed together.
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Futuristic Construction Games for Kids

Kids love building things and there are many futuristic construction games they can play and some can be found on Mini&Maximus. They are very enjoyable and parents can play with them too. These games are also very realistic and 3D. If your child wants to go into construction in the future, then here are some popular ones, all of which involve driving round in a wide range of different vehicles.

Construction Stimulator Pro 2017

Construction Stimulator Pro is a building game and you can handle a wide number of vehicles including bulldozers and cranes. This game is one of the best out there and it gives you a massive opportunity to build a name for yourself in the construction industry.


SimCity BuildIt

In SimCity, you can build your very own dream city. In this game, you can become the mayor which will leave you responsible for countless tasks for building the city. It allows you to solve real-life situations too. You can also connect and compete with other players.

Megapolis

Megapolis is an extremely similar and enjoyable game to SimCity BuildIt. You can build and design things from houses to airports. Build yourself a functional and modern city you can enjoy. Megapolis is a variant of the word megalopolis, this means a large city or urban area.

Skyscraper Construction Sim 3D

Skyscraper Construction is a construction game particularly aimed at skyscraper fans.
You can build your own skyscrapers and drive around in a large variety of vehicles. You can manually hand-design buildings by scripting with corresponding coordination for every object.

Big Machines Stimulator 3D

Big Machines Stimulator is an excellent choice of game if you are into heavy machinery. This game allows you to drive around in a large variety of different vehicles, including cranes and earthmovers.

Bridge Construction Stimulator

The aim of this game is to build safe and strong bridges. These bridges need to be built strong enough for heavy vehicles such as trucks and school buses to drive over. It is fun to play and good if you want to go into building bridges.

City Builder 17 Federal Prison

In this game, you need to build a high-security federal prison. You begin with simple tasks and move up to more complicated ones. As the game player, you are responsible for the different features of the construction process.

All of these games are very fun for kids and will lead them into the construction industry if they are used sharply.
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Top Gift Ideas for Girls Aged 10 Years Old

Ten years old is a preteen age. The kid becomes aware of their image and the surrounding world. They are quite picky, hence finding the right present is difficult. Girly gifts are excellent ideas but having some balance is essential and for more ideas check out StarWalkKids. Make her face light up with a gift that is not only entertaining but improves creativity, reasoning and logic skills. Some suggestions of gift ideas that will help a girl explore their personality include:

1. Origami brainteaser 

An Origami brainteaser has ten puzzles which kids can take as much time as they need to master. There are a variety of outcomes for puzzles such as the Flexi twist and Lotus of the Heart. The puzzles are brainteasers with many bold colors that spur creativity and art. It helps the kid master patience, think logically and overcome a challenge. The kid learns to stick to a project until its completion.

2. Spirograph deluxe design set 

Spirographs assist kids in creating a variety of shapes. The endless designs are fascinating to children. The kit has swirls and geometric patterns that make it easy to create any spiral shape imaginable. Children can learn the art of layering and alternating colors to come up with a transformative piece that they can show off to friends. Spirograph brings to life traditional hands-on art that enhances imagination. Kids can design with their friends hence fostering social relationships.

3. DIY wear friends forever jewelry 

Affirming long-lasting friendship is vital for 10-year old girls. Friendship bracelets are a great physical representation of a bond. The kit comes with looms for making bracelets, embroidery floss of different colors, beads, and a beading needle. The gift is perfect for nourishing social relationships and learning teamwork.

4. Hearth song large super soft plush 

Get your child the Hearth song large super soft plush if they love cuddling toys or are big fans of Dazzle the Unicorn. The plush has hearts, a pink collar, and the mane and tail are also fluffy. It is a perfect travel buddy or a bedtime companion for your kid to stroke and cuddle. It is a durable gift and easy to launder.

5. Color your pillowcase

The child can color and design the pillowcase using washable fabric makers. You can launder the pillowcase due to the washable makers. It encourages creativity; a child can draw their favorite their favorite characters or doodle anything.

6. Fabulous flowers hair accessories

The kit is meant to keep the girls busy making great hair accessories. It has crystals, glitter gel, and rhinestones for decorating the hair accessories. It is the perfect gift for girls with an inclination towards art. It fosters creativity as the kids spend hours creating unique patterns and designs.

7. Melissa and Doug friendship stamp set

It is a unique art and craft kit that encourages children to stamp a variety of pictures and then color. The set has colored pencils for sketching and coloring and pads of washable ink. The game promotes creativity and concept. The kids can use it to make cards and various scenes which enhances the motor ability and coordination skills.

Always pick a gift that enhances the kid’s personality or develops their hobby. Do not forget to include something pink and pretty.

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Six Hacks for Breezing Through the Airport

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When it comes to travel one of the most familiar sights is that of an airport. Depending on how you prepare and how you spend your time there, an airport can either be a tedious drag, or it could be a true highlight. This is especially important when you have children with you. The younger they are, the less patient they will be with the waiting aspect of flying. By following these six hacks, you can vastly improve your airport experience for the whole family and make getting through the airport a breeze:

Hacks for Getting Through Security 

     1. Have Everything Packed for Easy Security Checkout 
Have your liquids and electronics within easy reach so that you can quickly and efficiently unload your luggage to be scanned. It is wise to also refrain from wearing metal and to remember to remove the items like coins or keys from your pockets.

     2. Teach Your Children Before You Go 
If this is your child’s first time flying remember to coach them on what is going to happen before you go. That way they will know what is going on and won’t need to ask questions.

Hacks for Making the Wait Easier 

     1. Have Games and Activities Ready
Games and activities are a sure-fire way to keep kids entertained, but just remember that electronics shouldn’t be their only source of fun. Bring coloring books, a doll, and other quiet activities for them to enjoy.

      2.Try Walking Around When Children Are Restless
If your child is restless, then walk around with them. Let them go into the shops and engage with the world around them. You will know exactly when your flight is boarding and when you need to go back, and letting them run around inside the airport should blow off some steam, so they rest well on the flight.

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Hacks for When Your Flight is Delayed 

     1. Know What Your Rights Are 
You have rights when it comes to flying, but depending on where you fly, and with who you fly, those rights will differ. Flying in the EU means you can enjoy EU protections and regulations, but other airlines and destinations aren’t so lucky. Check in advance so you know what your rights are without stressing about a delay or cancellation.

     2. Get Compensation
Whether you travel for business or leisure, a delay at the airport will likely cost you. Perhaps the only cost will be lost time at your holiday destination, but more likely there will be extra transportation costs to cover the delay once you land. Do not let these inconveniences ruin your holiday. Instead, rest easy knowing which compensation plans are applicable. In the EU, for example, you are covered by government regulation, making the compensation process as easy as going to FairPlane and filling out their online form within six years of your flight’s delay. 
Photo by Dmitry Sovyak on Unsplash
Flying with children doesn’t have to be a nightmare, you only need to prepare your children and pack accordingly. By following these six hacks, you can actually turn the waiting hours at an airport from boring and stressful to fun for the whole family.
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Cooking For Performance: Fueling Your Teen Athlete

There are parents out there who have to feed teen athletes that need to perform. The right diet can help take your teen’s athletic performance to the next level. A small improvement can be the difference between your teen being recruited by colleges or ending their athletic career in high school. A great diet cannot make up for hard work in the gym, and on the practice field. Diet can only set your teen up for success as your performance is directly correlated to your overall diet. The following are tips that will help you cook for your teen to perform to the best of their ability.
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Let Them Define Their Goals

A diet that works for one type of athlete might be too high or low in calories and other nutrients. Wrestlers might be trying to drop weight in a healthy manner, while a football player wants to gain weight without losing foot speed. Goals can change from season to season so make sure that you are up to date with what your athlete wants to accomplish. This can be done as a family as accountability when it comes to diet, and is important especially if your teen wants to become an elite athlete. If you have more than one athlete, then you are going to be doing much more cooking. As a parent, you need to set your children up for success.

Do Some Research

Far too many people do not know how to eat for performance, and they usually just eat to survive. The right ratios of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates differ from sport to sport. Do not try out a fad diet on your young athlete, but rather feed them natural foods and avoid overly processed options. The internet is full of dietary programs for people trying to accomplish a variety of goals. If you do not trust internet experts it can be wise to go make an appointment with a nutritionist. This professional can help you by letting you know what to cook, and can even give you options that will make meal prepping quite easy.
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Use Healthy Alternatives To Cook With

Coconut oil’s uses and benefits are immense with the oil being great for the skin and hair. This is also a great alternative to cooking rather than using vegetable or canola oil. Many people think that it will impact the taste to the point of being bad tasting, but this could not be further from the truth. Other ingredients you can swap out is grain pasta. You can opt for a "riced" cauliflower instead. Small tweaks to certain recipes can make the diet of the entire family much healthier without sacrificing good tasting food. A general rule of thumb is to avoid processed foods, and have a diet full of fruits as well as vegetables. Lean proteins like chicken, bison, fish, and some cuts of red meat can help maximize protein without consuming high levels of fat.

Fuel your teen athlete appropriately and watch them reach their full athletic potential! Sometimes all your diet needs is a few tweaks to take your game to the next level.
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Basic First Aid Tips for Parents

Children are very prone to accidents and it is important that any sort of injuries are treated properly. When you are a parent, you’ll want to help them get through their pain as soon as possible but how can you do this if you don’t know how to properly perform first aid? If you’d like to know more about how you can help your child with their cuts, burns and sprains, keep reading our basic first aid tips below.

Having the right kit

Before we get started on our tips, you must first understand the importance of a proper first aid kit. Medical first aid kits can be purchased online that provide you with everything you need to help your child with their injury. You’ll need to make sure that you have all of the important first aid items in your kit. This includes things like plasters, bandages, pins, wipes and tweezers. Make sure to keep your first aid kit restocked so that you are covered in an emergency.

Small Cuts and Scrapes

If your child likes to run about outside, it is likely that they fall and cut themselves quite often. This is normal for all children and you need to remember that the bleeding will stop in a few minutes. To stop the bleeding, you should apply pressure for around 5 to 10 minutes. You should then clean out the wound using water and make sure that there is no dirt or stones etc in the wound. After this, you can apply some antibiotic ointment and then cover it with a plaster or bandage. This is fairly simple, but you should always remember to clean out the wound!

Sprains and Strains

A strain happens when a muscle is stretched or torn. If this happens to your child, they’ll likely complain of soreness and there might even be some bruising or swelling for a while. For the more serious injuries, known as sprains, ligaments might have been torn and so it is likely to take a little longer to heal. You should always check carefully the severity of the pain and if you suspect a sprain, you should go to see a doctor to get the problem fixed as soon as possible. To help treat an accident like this at home, you should make sure that your child rests the affected part of their body. You should then add ice to reduce the swelling. After this, you can use a bandage or a splint to compress the area and prevent any sort of swelling from happening. You should always make sure that the strain is elevated so that it is above your child’s heart.

If you follow this advice, you’ll be able to react more quickly to any sort of accidents that might happen when you are at home or out in a park somewhere. Make sure to always have a stocked up first aid kit and you’ll be ready for any sort of medical emergency.

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Great Ideas for Your Child’s Next Birthday Party

Thinking of ideas for your child’s next birthday party isn’t always easy, especially if they aren’t sure what they want either. As your child grows up, they will move away from the usual fun games and cake to more interesting parties like a soft play area. However, when you have used all of those ideas, what else can you try? Here are some ideas that might be able to help you.
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Listen to Your Child’s Interests
If you are stuck for ideas, sometimes the best solution is to try talking about their interests. Although you might think you know what they like, this might not be the case. You can then take those interests and use them as a theme for a party. You are also almost certain that their friends are interested in the same things. If you are planning a surprise birthday party, then it might be a good idea to speak to your child’s friends. They may have a greater idea if they will like it or not.

Glow in The Dark Party
A party like this is especially good around Halloween as it makes a great nighttime event. You can have everything glow in the dark from face paints to neon clothing. You can also hire or buy an ultraviolet light to make the neon and white stand out. There is also a great recipe for glow in the dark play dough that the kids will have great fun making.

Indoor Drive-In Movie Theater
For the younger children, this idea will be sure to keep them entertained, especially if you put on their favorite movie. All you need are some cardboard boxes and stick on a paper plate steering wheel and wheels You can then line them up in rows and let them watch their movie in comfort. You can even give them their snacks there as they are unlikely to want to get out.

Adventure Days
There are many adventure days set up around the country; they offer several activities including a high zip wire and climbing frames. If you are looking for something involving more puzzle solving, then there are also places like the Atlanta Escape Room. They offer the opportunity to get trapped in a room that you then have to work your way out of by solving clues. These adventure activities are great for older kids, especially those that love the outdoors.

Pool Party
Pool parties are a great way to have a summer birthday party, but the weather doesn’t have to stop you. If it’s raining outside, then you can still hire your local pool complex for an hour or so and invite all their friends. Some pool complexes have inflatables that they will let you use, as well as flumes or water slides. It is a good idea to ensure that all those attending can swim before you book.

These ideas are just a few of the many you can try if you think a little outside the box. The main part of any party, however, is to have fun.

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How To Throw An Amazing Kids Birthday Party

Even if your little ones are usually total angels, if their birthday party doesn’t go to plan you soon could have some tiny devils on your hands. Planning the perfect birthday party for your child can soon turn into an incredibly stressful event. Not only do you have to keep your children’s requests in mind, but also organizing entertainers, catering and gifts can soon turn into an expensive and stressful exercise. With so much to order, it’s no wonder that Moms feel overwhelmed before they’ve even picked up the phone. However, there’s no reason why you can’t have some fun too! Check out these tips to throw an amazing kids birthday party.
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Invites
Be sure to get your party invites out several weeks before your child’s birthday – kids have a hectic social schedule too! Kids are easy to please and will be happy with either a large party or a small gathering of just family and close friends. You could also consider hiring a party planner to help design and issue invites if time is a little tight.

Themes
This is where the fun truly starts, plus it encourages you and your kids to work together to deliver a memorable and magical birthday theme. From aliens to cowboys and Indians, or princesses and mermaids, make sure that you discuss any potential themes with the birthday boy or girl first. If you are on a tight budget, then why not get your kids involved in making homemade decorations and props to turn your living room into the surface of the moon or the bottom of the ocean? Check out your local dollar store and charity stores to pick up props and arts and crafts materials that won’t break the bank.
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Fun Food
When it comes to catering for your child’s birthday, keep it simple and colorful. Try chips and dips with some vegetable crudités. You could also create some mini hot dogs or hamburgers with homemade sides, to cut down on salt and sugar. Kids aren’t fussy when it comes to food. Just make sure that you don’t put out too much candy if you want to keep the day under control!

Entertainment
Remember that any entertainment has to match your theme. From a home screening of their favorite movie to getting a professional entertainer to visit your home, the entertainment can be as lavish or extravagant as your budget. Party games cost nothing and are a great way to tire out energetic little people.

Remembering a special day
The candles and cake are long gone, so how do you remember your child’s special day? Consider using a birthday collage maker to turn all those happy memories into a work of art. This is a great way to keep the day alive for many years to come.

Once you’ve planned the day, sent out the invites, sorted your theme and arranged the food make sure that you enjoy the party too! No one likes a stressed host, so be sure to remain calm and relaxed and enjoy the birthday mood.
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