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Educational Toy Ideas

Instead of giving your child another toy that will just sit on the shelf after a few weeks, give your child the gift of knowledge that will last a lifetime. Here you will find a guide to some of the top learning toys. Infants and Toddlers Nest and Stack Buckets: Babies love to stack and sort. With this set, there are 9 different sized stackable buckets and 4 blocks that come in different shapes and colors. The largest bucket has a snap-on lid that allows babies to match up the shaped block to the bucket opening. The buckets can be put inside one another or stacked up to make a tower. Take Apart Toys: Toddlers love to build things almost as much as they love to take them apart. To pique their interest and actually give them the opportunity to take something apart, without getting in trouble, these toys are perfect. Each set comes with the tools needed to do the job, which also promotes motor skills. You can find take apart toys from Battat, Tomy Constructables, Black and Decker and more brands online. Vtec...

 


Turn Back the Clock with a Mommy Makeover

Every woman has concerns about their appearance after pregnancy. Will I lose the weight? Will my stomach every return to normal? Will my breasts ever be the same again? It is the price women pay for having children. The babies are worth it but the strain on our bodies is severe. In fact, the older a woman is at childbirth, the harder it can be for her body to bounce back after a pregnancy, up to 18 months by some accounts. If it is a repeat pregnancy or, worse, a back-to-back pregnancy the recovery can drag for years. Whether from natural childbirth or a c-section, the stomach can appear distended or loose skin can hang while breast-feeding can cause the breasts to sag and lose their natural shape. Enter the mommy makeover. This may sound like a simple afternoon that includes lunch with friends, a haircut and some fresh makeup but it is much more involved than that. A mommy makeover is actually a three-pronged surgical attack. Plastic surgeons perform a breast lift (mastopexy) to revive sagging breast and re...

 


Creating a Safe Home Environment

Home is supposed to be your safe place, but the home is full of potential dangers. Some are obvious, but some aren't as obvious. Nothing brings home safety to the forefront like having a child in the house. Whether it's a grandchild or your own baby, you suddenly see your home for what it is - a trap full of danger. Seriously, though, you can make your home a lot safer just by being cognizant of the potential dangers and acting on the advice here. Medication Keep all medications up and out of the way of little hands. This is not always possible due to the fact that children are known to climb to find things they aren't supposed to have. And sometimes the person who needs the medication can't reach an area out of sight of the kids. The best thing to do is get a locked box that cannot be opened by anyone but the person using the medications or delivering the medications. You can purchase a simple locked box like this one with a combination lock. They also make some with keys: http://www.amazon.com/Combinati...

 


Essential Fire Safety Tips

The very best fire safety is fire prevention. It's important when cooking, or starting a fire in a fireplace, or using a space heater, to always be aware of the dangers and practice smart safety tips. Always read the directions of any equipment the first time you use it, and take precautions to avoid accidents - such as not allowing children to light candles or cook alone. Install a fire alarm in every room of the house and test it periodically to be sure it is working. House Fires House fires are one of the most feared and devastating disasters a family can face. They can occur at any time and get out of control quickly. That's why it's important that the entire family is trained (where age appropriate) to use a fire extinguisher, and how to get out of the house during a fire. Regular fire drills should be the norm in a house full of children. Children who are trained how to get to safety during a house fire are much more likely to survive than those who are not trained. Teach them if they catch their cl...

 


Nursery Design 101

Before you start decorating that nursery space, think ahead a few years. What will your child like at age four or ten? Chances are they won’t adore the baby elephant wallpaper you're planning to use. If you want to save money and time later on, create a nursery that grows with your child at any age of life. You can do that easily on any budget, keeping only a few things in mind. Think Beyond Traditional Colors Stop thinking blue for boys and pink for girls. You can choose colors beyond these that work nicely, and are easy to accessorize. Consider yellows, greens, even neutrals such as white or beige. Neutrals pair nicely with bright colors, and you can decorate a number of ways with them. Teens often love bright colors in their room, so you may not even have to paint for several years, if at all. If you love pastels, you can have them as accent colors, rather than dominating the entire room's color scheme. Wallpaper is not the Only Option Use fabrics that tie well to your theme, instead of wallpap...

 


Keep Your Child Safe on the Computer

Using the internet is sort of like letting your children loose in NY City. It's a dangerous place and much can go wrong if you're not educated on the facts. You need to understand how dangerous the internet is, what can happen, and how to prevent the bad things from occurring. You don't want to keep your kids from using the internet to discover wonderful things, but you do want to protect them from the seedier parts of life as long as you can. Talk to Your Child Talk to your child about the internet and how it's not private. They're not anonymous on the net no matter how careful they are with screen names, picture sharing and other instances. While most social networks offer some privacy settings, there are always those who can find ways to get around them. Assume anything you say or share online is available for the world's viewing. Any strange who asks to meet them is a danger. Monitor Your Child Place the computer in the family room while children are younger. After a child has reached an older age, ab...

 


Making Your Home Baby-Proof

Before you bring a child into the world, you need to make sure it’s safe to bring him or her into your home. Baby proofing is an important step in parenthood; one you should never neglect. However, preparing your home does not have to be overly complicated or expensive. Use common sense plus a few safety products to baby proof you home and you will be well-equipped for your bundle of joy. Think Like a Baby Look at anything that exists from your knees down. Your baby will eventually be crawling and getting into mischief. Anything floor level is their domain. Prevent injuries by using top baby safety products in the home. Outlet plugs are one of the best safety devices available to parents. They're inexpensive and prevent your child from sticking anything into a live outlet. Consider the sharp corners of your table or its stack of books. These can easily fall onto a baby with one quick motion. You can make the corners safe with table bumpers. Put all breakable or harmful objects out of baby's reach. ...

 


5 Most Important Teen-Driving Safety Issues

There comes a time in all parents' lives that they dread - their teenager getting behind the wheel. But, driving is a teenage rite of passage and one that most do safely when trained properly. The statistics are staggering, however. Half of all deaths of 13- to 19-year-olds happen due to a car crash with 16-year-olds having the most. There are ways that you can reinforce safety to your teenager, and that is by example. 1) Don't Talk on Your Phone Most teens do report to talking on their phone while driving, and guess what - an even higher percentage of parents do. You may think that your years behind the wheel make it okay but the truth is, kids do what they learn. Don't do it. Set the example for safety to your kids and they will be less likely to talk on the phone too. 2) Wear Your Seat Belt Not only should you wear your seat belt, you should also insist that everyone in your vehicle wears a seat belt. Studies show that teenagers who have parents who demonstrate this practice consistently are more likel...

 


Play Safe - Child Safety at the Playground

Playing is fun, but it can also be dangerous. It's important to use a few rules and common sense when your children are playing to ensure they stay safe as possible. There are issues that can happen in a split second that you may not have foreseen. Toys and playground equipment can be dangerous without you even realizing it. There are safety regulations in place, but sometimes a toy or a piece of equipment is old and was made before a new regulation was put into place. Even in the best circumstances, using a little common sense can go a long way. Toys Ensure that the toys your child is using meets the right age requirement. Those age restrictions are in place to help prevent strangulation, choking and other issues. For instance, a puzzle meant for a six-year-old, might be able to be put together by a 3-year-old, but they probably shouldn't because the pieces might be choking hazards. If a toy fits in a child's mouth all the way, they probably shouldn't play with it unless you're directly supervising them...

 


Marriage to Parenthood – Make a Healthy Transition

You may have been married for several years or are still a newlywed. If you are beginning to consider a family, how do you prepare your marriage for parenting? The idea of going from two to three or more can be daunting; but, with a few considerations and discussions with your spouse, you can make your marriage ready for parenthood. Start Discussions Now Start having frank talks about raising a family. Not just on nursery themes; but, on important issues on which couples may be divided. Talk about discipline methods, cloth diapers vs. disposable, day care vs. staying at home, and other important topics. Don't forget to discuss the responsibilities a baby brings, such as midnight feedings and sleep schedules. You may not agree with some of your spouse’s parenting tactics. Both of you will have opinions on whether to make or buy baby food. You might consider day care, while your partner will not hear anything of the sort. Expect and accept some disagreement. No marriage can survive with both parties ...

 


Keep Your Favorite Outdoor Activities Safe

Everyone enjoys recreation. It's great to ride your bike, skateboard and do other fun stuff when the weather permits. But, all this fun has danger attached to it. The great thing is you can eliminate and prevent a lot of accidents by practicing basic safety precautions, no matter the type of sport or recreation your children want to be involved with. Biking Every child eventually learns to ride a bike. It's a rite of passage almost as exciting as getting a driver's license. It's also almost as dangerous. Riding a bike is a great mode of transportation for children, as well as a great way to explore the neighborhood and do things with friends. But, used improperly it can be deadly. Ensure that the bike is the right size for your child. Using a bike too small or too big can make falling more likely. In addition, all children (and adults) riding bikes should wear a helmet. Riding a bike without a helmet is a bad choice. Even professional bike riders have accidents that would kill them without a helmet. Skii...

 


Calm Your Baby's Daiper Rash The Natural Way

Diaper rash is caused by moist skin and diaper friction, and most babies at some point will get it. A few preventative actions you can take are to change your baby frequently, use cloth diapers and/or put the diapers on a little looser so baby’s skin can breathe. If you baby already has diaper rash though, there are a few things you can do to relieve the pain and discomfort for your baby while it heals: Let them be free The best way to cure a sore baby bottom is to let baby run around with no diaper at all. This lets the air get to the affected area and helps to clear it up. Not to mention baby will love it! But, unfortunately, your baby can’t always be running around with no clothes so for those times when a diaper is required, try some of these all natural remedies. Soft cloth and Warm Water Commercial diaper wipes have perfumes, alcohol and lots of stuff that’s hard to pronounce, which isn’t good for baby’s delicate skin. Using these products can make even a mild ...

 


Cars and Child Safety

The safety of your children is of course very important to you. You would never knowingly do anything to harm them. But, there are times when people are trying to be safe but are still accidentally putting children at risk due to lack of knowledge about whether something is safe or not. Let's go over car safety and how kids can be kept safe. Car Seats First, every child should have a car seat. This is needed from infants until a child is at least 12 years old or tall and big enough that the seat belt can fit them properly. A seat belt should lie across the upper thighs and shoulder in a snug manner. Seat belts do not go across the chest and stomach. In addition, children should always ride in the back until they're adult size because it is safer. There are two basic types of car seats: * Infant seats - These are for children who are under 12 months of age and are rear facing. You can buy seats which are only for infants or that adjust for older children. However, keeping them in a rear facing position is ...

 


Sibling Rivalry – Getting Your Child Ready for a New Baby Brother or Sister

Your family is growing! You may have a preschooler or two and don't know how to prepare them for the new baby. This is a big change in a child's life, so preparation is key for introducing the idea of a new sibling. Starting the process early will help make the transition easier. Talk to Your Preschooler Read books together on new babies, such “The New Baby” by Mercer Mayer or “What To Expect When the New Baby Comes Home” by Heidi Murkoff. Show your preschooler pictures of their baby days and read their baby book, sharing memories. Emphasize that your preschooler will soon have their own special memories of a baby to share with the family. Answer Questions and Offer Information Your preschooler may have a lot of questions about the new baby, such as how it got in your tummy, or what do babies eat. Consider their questions carefully and answer in a way you feel is appropriate. You can try a technique where you let your child lead the conversation, replying to questions with your se...

 


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