Thursday, May 16, 2013

Summer is Coming!

  Girl (3-4) on swing, portrait 

It's that time of year again!  The days are getting longer, the weather is warming up and the sun is shining, so it’s time to bring out the sunscreen.  Last week I organized our shoes to make room for our summer shoes. It's time to go through my girls' closets and drawers and remove the winter clothes to make room for the summer clothes.  I have three girls so this might take a while :-)

I don't really have to buy summer clothes for my younger girls because they get all the hand me downs, but I'll have to go shopping for my oldest one.  Of course, I still buy my younger girls new clothes too once in a while.  I like it when my girls match, so I try to buy them the same thing :-)

Are you ready for summer?

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Children Chewing Gum

  Girl blowing bubble with gum 

At what age should you let your child chew gum? I guess it depends on the child.  When children begin eating solid food they are taught to chew and swallow, but gum doesn't work that way.  I don't feel comfortable giving our children gum until they understand the concept of chewing without swallowing. 

Our five year old has asked us for gum many times, but I'm always worried that she will swallow and choke on it. She's almost six years old, so one day she tried a piece and she liked it.  She told me that she didn't swallow it and that she put it in the garbage.  I was relieved, but I'm not in a rush to go out and buy her gum.  Our four year old tried gum once and she didn't like it.  I think she's still too young to understand how gum works.  

Gum can be a choking hazard, so don't give your children gum until they're old enough.  Be patient and when they're ready you will know. 


Thursday, May 2, 2013

Cleaning Up Toys

  Asian boy in messy bedroom 

It's a good idea to encourage your children to clean up their toys.  It will teach them to take care of their things and become organized.  If they start playing with a toy and decide they want to move on to something else, remind them to clean up first so you don't end up with toys all over the floor.  Easier said than done right?  This isn't always easy, especially if you have more than one child.  Most young children have a short attention span, so they quickly go from one activity to another.

To help your children learn to clean up their toys you should be their role model.  If your children see you picking up toys and putting them away they will want to do the same.  I'm constantly picking up toys in our house, but our children have started doing it too.  Our five year old is a very good cleaner.  If we ask her to clean up her toys she does it and sometimes we don't have to ask.  If I comment about the mess she'll start cleaning up.  Our three year old usually does what her older sister does.  While I'm cleaning up the toys I explain to them what I'm doing.  For example, our three year old has a habit of colouring with washable markers and leaving the lids off of them when she's done.  I always remind her to remember to put the lids back on them because they'll dry out and won't be good anymore.  We usually sing a cleanup song while we're cleaning up to make it more enjoyable.  It's also a good idea to give them a warning ahead of time.  For example, you can say something like "five more minutes and then it's time to clean up."  This way they're prepared and they know what you expect from them.

Happy cleaning!