Category Archives: Toddlers 1 – 4

How To Survive Thanksgiving With Babies and Toddlers

Thanksgiving With Babies and Toddlers can get pretty hectic

Are you spending Thanksgiving with a baby or toddler this year? Are you dreading what may happen at the dinner table, or how much longer it will take to prepare for the Thanksgiving festivities? How about entertaining them? 

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I know I am! I am a very seasoned mama, but this year I was dreading Thanksgiving because I already have a hard time just getting everyday things done. I don’t want to imagine what it will be like trying to cook and all that. 

I know you’re thinking but mama, you literally have had babies and toddlers in your care for the last twenty years! 

You are right, I have spent plenty of years at the mercy of surviving Thanksgiving with toddlers and them. 

Why is this year different? I don’t know? Have you ever felt that? 

Yaidan is still a very high needs child. Everyday is a worry of what will he get into, what foods will he refuse, what thing will he try to climb all the “what” can get tiring. 

Thanksgiving this year will just be us, so it is like cooking dinner on a regular night and with Yaidan, this isn’t easy to do. Most times he is on my hip. It seems like he still has colic, he still has lots of his crying fits. He basically cluster feeds now. And you guessed it, no-one else exists to him for the most part. He will go to others, for maybe ten to fifteen minutes at a time. Barely enough time for me to catch my breath. 

Mama, you aren’t alone in wondering how you will make it through

Thanksgiving With a Baby or Toddler

I have been following and joining many conversations on Facebook with other moms and what will they do with their baby or toddler while they are busy running around cooking, cleaning and entertaining guests. 

The common answer I see is, “the child will be so busy with guests and not to worry about it.” – But what if that isn’t the case? – What happens when it just isn’t that easy to do? What if you have a child with sensory or other limitations?

 I know the photos we see all across Facebook and Instagram will only show the fun parts of Thanksgiving, but what is really going on there? This year, I can’t show you my behind the scenes workload. If you would love to send in your Thanksgiving story with your baby or toddler, we would love to add it to this post ( email us the story and a photo that we can share to marilynprteam @gmail .com )

I cheated and we ordered catered foods! I honestly didn’t want to stress myself out. What else am I doing to make eating with a toddler easier, healthier, safer and overall stress free? I created a meal plan, a menu for Yaidan and collected some activities. 

Keep going, there are so many resources below, go through them all so you can have a wide variety of things to choose for your own baby or toddler.

Thanksgiving Toddler Food and Meal Plan

Have you been wondering what to feed your baby or toddler? 

Yes! This is so common, I’ve seen at least fifty conversions with at least one-hundred other moms replying to those posts; All wondering the same things about foods and our little ones. 

What to do when Aunty Jeanny wants Maxy (who is under six months old) to “try” some gravy, mashed potatoes or how about a lick of some ice cream, oh but Maxy will devour some of my pumpkin pie! 

Are … You … Cringing Yet?!!? I know I am. 

This taste or that lick isn’t good for such immature GI Tracts at all. Humans simply do not have digestive enzymes to digest anything but milk until after they are six months old. You are causing harm to their GI Tract by giving them something their body isn’t physically capable of processing just yet. You know those adults with things like GERD, IBS and other GI issues, well it all started with a taste, a bite and a lick of something other than milk before age six months old.

Put together a meal plan, with a menu. Include the whole days worth of food and drinks, not just dinner.
Here is  Free Download and Print Baby – Toddler Menu and Meal Planner.

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So what can you give your baby that is older than six months old? They just aren’t exactly ready to chomp on everything on our plates but you don’t want them grabbing at your foods either. And you want to help them feel like they are inclusive of family Thanksgiving dinner. 

Check out some nutritional information about what we are eating on Thanksgiving Day

Food And Drinks For a Filling and Healthy Thanksgiving Baby or Toddler Belly

Ideas of food choices for older babies ( 6+ months ), toddlers and even some preschoolers can easily and safely enjoy Thanksgiving meals from brands such as Earth’s Best, Ella’s Kitchen and Gerber. 

Make Little Ones Little Foodies By Introducing Flavors And Textures – Even Spices! Little Ones Can Enjoy Cinnamon, Cumin & Rosemary. ~ Get Your Little Foodie Going This Holiday Season! – Deena Blanchard MD, MPH is a board certified pediatrician working at Premier Pediatrics.

A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving breakfast can include some fruit , yogurt from Gerber, Cheerios an egg (for toddler) and a couple of ounces of Ella’s Kitchen juice. 

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Breakfast Meal Idea

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Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Breakfast Meal Idea

 

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A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving Lunch can include Ella’s Kitchen – Chicken Casserole, some Earth’s Best Mac n Cheese with Carrots and Broccoli pieces, if there are any fruits left over from breakfast and the remaining juice from the morning. 

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Lunch Meal Idea

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Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Lunch Meal Idea

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A Baby or Toddler Thanksgiving Dinner can be the main feast! Earth’s Best has a tasty Turkey dinner. Your child wont have to miss a thing when it comes to sharing foods that are like our own, except their foods have just the right amount of seasonings that are just right for their developing and growing bodies.

Baby’s First Thanksgiving Dinner Meal Idea

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Toddler’s First Thanksgiving Dinner Meal Idea

toddlers-1st-thanksgiving-dinner-meal-idea

 

Thanksgiving Snacks For Baby Or Toddler

If you can prepare some snacks ahead of time, that would save you some anxiety on Turkey day. If not, here are some snack suggestions to keep on hand for your baby or toddler. Sometimes they just need a little snack in between meals. Have these ready to eat so reduce hunger meltdowns.

thanksgiving-baby-or-toddler-snack-ideas

How about Toddler Thanksgiving Entertainment, What Can They Do? 

Set up a Toddler activity center. Get various art supplies that are safe for toddlers like crayons made for toddlers, paper, feathers, glue sticks, Popsicle sticks and other fun items. Let them explore the supplies and freely create something.

The more items that can be used independently without too much help from you, the better. One item can entertain a toddler for about fifteen minutes. That gives you time to check on the turkey! 

Prepare multiple activities ahead of time when it comes to having toddlers or preschoolers during the thanksgiving celebrations. Make a Thanksgiving Sensory Bin with items that let them use various senses. Items can be Thanksgiving themed felt pieces, colored rice, feathers,  buttons, pumpkin scented Playdoh and other Thanksgiving related items that are also safe for your child. 

Put together an activity center where it’s not in the way but you can also keep a watchful eye out. 

Check out Toddler Workboxes, setting this up ahead of time will save so much frustration on thanksgiving day. Click through this slideshow for more Thanksgiving fun that are baby and toddler friendly.

 

DIY Thanksgiving Hat Kids Craft Honey and Lime Blog

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DIY Thankgiving Turkey Hat Tutorial | Thank you Deanna for your contribution!

Halloween Goodies Swap Challenge

Halloween Goodies Swap Challenge

I am challenging you to participate in a Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap. How many times have we gone trick-or-treating during Halloween and get a humongous bag full of candy for our little ones?

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Every single year, right! With so much information out there about our nutritional needs we can especially use them for Halloween too.

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Halloween marks a time when many begin to fall off their wagon and give into all the sugar and simple carbs that we are bombarded with.

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We can begin to change this behavior starting out with our children is really important.

What we do with our children today shapes their entire future. Below are some interesting things to offer.

Goodies don’t have to be just candy anymore.

Halloween time has such a huge selection of fun things to use as goodies for Halloween parties and even your trick-or-treaters.

Greet your Halloween guests with various Halloween goodies such as toys, books and a wide range of tasty snacks.

For example when your party guests arrive, greet them with a smoothie. Instead of juice, a smoothie is a nutritional Halloween Snack Swap choice. This smoothie is also a great choice to take along your Halloween Trick-or-Treat route.

ellas-kitchen-strawberry-blast-smoothie

 Year after year, it is the same thing. Going from neighbor to neighbor all handing out things that contribute to diabetes and other health issues.

What about those children who have food allergies? Or children whose parents do not give them candy. Offering alternatives for children allows more children to participate.

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What about tired toddlers and preschoolers? Having a toddler and preschooler party allows children in these age ranges to feel included in the festivities. It gets tiring walking around.

Do you host or attend a Toddler Halloween Party?

I am already planning my toddler and preschool friendly Halloween party for next year.

What else can you include in your Halloween Goodies Swap

It is time we adopt new Halloween goodies traditions.  Have you ever tried to hand out something other than candies like little toys little mini books crayons, coloring books and healthy snacks.

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These are some fun Halloween goodies to pass out that gives the children something else to do, other than goggle up cavities….. ooops, I mean candy.

There Are a Variety Of Nutritional Halloween Snacks Are Available Including Activities to Use Them With

Have you seen Kate’s Green Halloween Treats I love her ideas, they are fun and the kids don’t even realize the focus is on healthier snacks.

I saw that Earths Best has little cookies with letters on it. How cool is that to give away some little snacks that has letters on them. Not only are they a nutritional snack but also a fun activity the kids can use for spelling out words.

We went and picked up some letter cookies

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They can help each other spell their name, a  pets name,  your name,  dad’s name oh my gosh just the possibilities would be endless.

What a great way to introduce your preschooler into phonics as well. Letter recognition, matching letters and even beginning how to spell two letter to three letter words.  

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Confessions Of A Homeschooler offers free Letter Of the Week printables, she has paid versions too. Use resources like this with these cookies, it is perfect and it fits really well with it too.

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What Nutritional Halloween Snacks Did You Make The Switch With? 

You can give your child a pouch food to snack on while your trick-or-treating or just before you go trick-or-treating that way they’re not saying “hey I want to piece of candy”. Not knowing whether the candy from this house or that house is a safe piece of candy before you can get a chance to check the candy to make sure it’s OK.

Check out the snack variety Ella’s Kitchen offers

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I highly suggest  taking along some snacks to give your child a snack for the Halloween adventures.

 I took the Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap Challenge and here is what I came up with:

  1. Ella’s Kitchen pouch foods 
  2. Ella’s Kitchen juice box and a smoothie
  3. Earth’s Best letters and their chocolate chip cookies in a little Ziploc bag 

Before we left my toddler ate some of his fruit and veggie melts that I make for him daily.

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What choices did you make for the Nutritional Halloween Snack Swap? Give us some suggestions in the conversation below. 

Here are some other Spooky Halloween things to do too

Bloody Eye Popcorn

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Here is the simple recipe: ½ c dehydrated strawberries, ground into powder. 4 c of popcorn, popped. 1 Tbl. Betsy’s Best peanut butter, almond butter or seedbutter. 3 Tbl. rice syrup 4 Tbl. butter 1 bag eyeball candy Melt together the butter, Betsy’s Best and rice syrup in a microwave for approximately 30 45 seconds, remove and stir until smooth. Add the strawberry powder and mix until smooth. Pour over popcorn in a bowl and mix with spatula.

halloween-safety

Kids Academy Preschool App and Printables

Have a preschooler or a child that needs help with writing, letters, numbers, spelling and more? I found a great kids learning resource for you!

This blog has partnered with Mom Buzz Media to announce this exciting information!

Kids Academy Releases Preschool Education Center
for iOS and Android!

Kids Academy – the team behind some of the top educational apps for kids with over 10 million downloads worldwide just released the long-awaited version of their flagship app – Preschool Education Center.

Jehzel, who is 7 years old has a hard time with writing. He read his very first word in April, so he is still learning lots about how to sound out letters, words and write them as well. I will be printing off some worksheets for him.
Preschool Education Center is an all-in-one educational app for kids and toddlers. The app covers all aspects of early childhood education from the alphabet and reading to writing, building vocabulary and developing math skills. Based on the proven Montessori method the app offers a number of fun games that help master essential learning skills through play.

I love this learning resource because it offers alot and gives me options.


Until now, Preschool Education Center has only been available on iTunes but today’s release makes it finally available for Android device on Google Play! This fun and free app is currently being featured in the Family section of the Android store in the USA, Australia and Canada.

I am so excited, because Jehzel has his own tablet, but it uses Google Play, now he can easily access his app.

Get the app free on Google Play!

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iTunes Kids AcademyFor iOS devices:

Kids Academy have also updated the iOS version of the app: Preschool & Kindergarten Early Learning Games adding new games, books and educational cartoons and shows as well as printable worksheets.
– The update boasts a bunch of cute little monsters that will teach your kids about money and how to count it.
– Kids Academy TV now has a 24/7 Live Zoo channel offering web-cam views on real-life animals.

Grab your free copy of the update on the iTunes App Store!

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free worksheets

BONUS!
Free Preschool & Kindergarten Worksheets for Kids

Kids Academy is also finding a way to expand beyond the screen and help master pen and pencil with free printable worksheets. You can get free preschool worksheets on a variety of subjects from alphabet to math (the library is being constantly updated).
Download, print out and get start practicing with good old pen and paper in seconds!

Head over to to the Kids Academy to get your FREE PRINTABLE WORKSHEETS and get your kids busy!

Mom Conference

Mom Conference – Helping both you and I become better moms <3

I attended this Mom Conference last year. It is great to be able to have these conferences. This type is done virtually, whew. I love virtual stuff, sometimes it just isn’t feasable to attend in person. Last year I gained lots of great information. This year isn’t any different. I will be coming back to this post and add what i have learned this year. I’d like you to come join me, it is free. When you are done, come abck and let’s discuss! Sign up free here -> Mom Conference

I am excited about this conference. I will be getting copies of it as well for reference. I know I am busy and I get distracted so getting a copy of the conference is best for me, yes even as a seasoned mom of 19 years. Each year I learn something new or my information and education on a topic is renewed.

Meet the speakers:

Holly Rigby

Mom conference speaker

Crystal Paine

mom conference speaker

Richard and Linda Eyre

mom conference speaker

John Maxwell

John-Maxwell

 

 

 

register for mom conference