Praise for Playful Parenting

Yesterday, I mentioned that I have been reading a great parenting book. “Playful Parenting” by Lawrence J. Cohen has reminded me of how much my boys need me to play with them. They need me to play with them much more often than I have been playing with them. They need me to be involved directly with them much more than they need me to be spending a great deal of time concerning myself with household tasks like dishes, laundry, cooking and cleaning. Of course, the fact that my sons need me to play with them and focus exclusively on … Continue reading

Redefining Rainy Day Fun

Many people think about indoor activities like reading, doing crafts, watching movies, or baking whenever they hear the words “rainy day fun”. Tuesday was a rainy day here, but we just were not having much fun indoors. There are plenty of fun things to do indoors at our house. We have blocks, a workbench with tools, tons of toy vehicles, stuffed animals, inflatable blue dogs that you can sit on and bounce around the living room, art supplies, books, movies, and more. However, even though it has officially been springtime for almost a month, the weather here has been cold … Continue reading

Oh The Ways That They Play

Did you know that a certain amount of wild energy and boisterous play is not only normal but appropriate for toddlers? If you watch any nature show where there are groups of young animals, you will notice that roughhousing is as much of a part of their daily lives as eating and sleeping. While we are not animals, children do still have needs to wrestle, climb, and jump. Now that Blake is about eleven months old, he is moving around a lot by crawling and cruising. He loves to play alone, but he really loves to play with his big … Continue reading

Ideas for Active Indoor Play

It is the middle of winter here in the North Country. For parents of toddlers, it is a time of year when you probably want to be outside with the kids enjoying the snow as much as possible. However, you may find yourself indoors most of the time because little kids can only really be outdoors for a little while before they get cold. You may also have noticed that toddlers’ energy levels do not have any regard to the seasons or the weather. Your active toddler has just as much energy in the middle of winter as he did … Continue reading

Today was a Great Day

Some days, I am so exhausted by the time that the boys go to bed that it is a wonder that I have any brain power left to write blog posts, do dishes, or do any of the other things that I do in between the time that they go to bed and my own bed time. Parenting small children requires a great deal of physical and mental energy, and some days require more than others. For the past few days it felt like it took enormous amounts of energy just to get through the day with everyone being fed, … Continue reading

Snowy Days are Here Again

It’s cold outside right now, and as Dylan sleeps the night away, it is snowing like crazy. We have not had much snow at all yet this winter, and winter in Vermont is normally associated with snow and plenty of it. It is possible that this storm will bring anywhere between six and eighteen inches of snow to our home. Tomorrow morning, Dylan is sure to be excited when he sees what happened overnight. He loves to be outdoors, even in the snow and the cold. If you have a toddler or two at home, chances are that your little … Continue reading

First Friends

Every parent wants their toddler to be well liked. After all, we adore them, so why shouldn’t they have tons of friends and other adoring fans? Many toddlers revel in attention and enjoy social interaction. Others prefer to explore their surroundings independently and may seem shy and quiet. Part of paving the way towards positive social experiences for your toddler is observing how different types of social settings affect him and seeking out the kinds of social experiences that he enjoys. Play dates can be a lot of fun, but they can become overwhelming if there are too many children … Continue reading

How to Get the Ya Ya’s Out

It’s cold outside, even if it is not snowing. It seems like we have spent most of our time indoors for a few months, now. If you are the parent of an active toddler, then you will probably agree that you miss outdoor play as much as I do. Not only is it healthy for kids to play outside, there are plenty of opportunities for them to run, jump, climb, and otherwise make good use of their boundless energy. Now that play time has primarily moved indoors, our active toddlers need one or more outlets for all of that energy. … Continue reading

Places to Play

The temperature has consistently been over 90 degrees in our area of North Texas for weeks. It’s not even mid-June yet and we’re sweltering. I love the heat, but it’s not the best to be out in for long periods of time. I’ve written about how our lack of a fence limits how Jessie can play outside. This leaves me looking for safe places where Jessie can play. I took Jessie to the park in the middle of our small town. We didn’t stay long because the play equipment was geared toward older children instead of toddlers. This was very … Continue reading

Gymboree Play & Music

In March 2009, my mom suggested that Jessie would probably benefit from an activity with other children her age. What? Jessie doesn’t get enough interaction from watching me work at home? Mom’s suggestion was Gymboree. It sounded like a good idea to me. I looked up the website and found the location nearest to me. Oh my! The nearest location is about an hour away. That’s okay; we’ll just go try the class. Little did I know that I would love Gymboree. The jury was still out for Jessie, but enough parents told me that sitting and watching was common … Continue reading