Big Kid Bigger Emotions

Feelings are good to have. But why do we expect our children and teens to “Control” thier emotions?

By control do you mean?

Just be happy. Don’t let things affect you. It’s not that big of a deal.

How would you feel if someone told you? “It’s not a big deal.” “Why are you worried about that?” “You’re so sensitive, you need to relax.”

Doesn’t feel good does it? It may bring up other feelings as well, such as shame, embarrassment, helplessness, hopelessness, inadequacy, frustration and anger.

Children and teens are the same. Those feeling cause them to act out a certain way. Usually an unhelpful way.

So how do you help?

1. Be a good role model. Start with your own self-care. Children learn what they live.

2. Talk about feelings, good and bad ones.

3. Respect their struggle. Validate their emotion. Growing up is hard. Do you remember being a kid?

4. Teach them new ways to keep calm, and relax. Make it part of a daily routine.

Pressures build up for children and teens as they grow and develop. They become more aware of the stressors around them. They can look things up on the internet. They have more expectations put on them.

Time management, friends, family, social skills and school are real concerns. Things you can’t take away, but you can teach them to deal with their stress and emotion in a helpful way.

Sit down with your kids and ask them what will help. It will take time, but eventually you will help them to turn to helpful coping when they start to feel strong emotion.

If you need a some help, I have created some helpful worksheets that can be found at the link below.


My Daughter’s Allergies Have Given Us More Family Time

At seven months old we found out my daughter had food allergies. Milk, soy and egg. At first it was a struggle, but it quickly became a way of life. Vegan websites and recipes were a life saver. A few weeks ago my poor daughters face turned a bright red. It was an allergic reaction, but to what?

We have been doing a food elimination, while we wait to see the allergist… in August (insert sigh here).

Family doctor told us to remove all food with preservatives. I’m happy to say we didn’t need to remove much, but it’s tough as a kid to not have some of those fun foods. School snacks were easier to purchased store bought.

So my daughter started doing some research on clean eating. She put together a few recipes and made a list for the grocery store.

I have to say we all pulled together as a family to make it work. We were in the kitchen for a few days preparing new snacks and meals. I have to say I quite enjoyed it, as you may know quality time is my fav.

We have made some yummy food. The bonus is I found some new foods I know love to eat. I would have never eaten chia seed pudding (the texture did NOT look appetizing)

I LOVE it! I tried it with almond milk, cows milk and coconut milk out of the can (this is my fav).

We made: kale chips, granola, chia seed pudding with cocao, apple chips (that never got crispy) and protein balls (that fell apart).

Im looking forward to expanding our menu!

Little Kid BIG Emotions

Major meltdowns, crying, screaming, kicking. Sound familiar?

It’s normal, up until five years old to have temper tantrums. Regardless of the child’s age, it’s important to give them support and empathy.

How can such a small person have such big emotions?

They do, they feel things bigger than we do. An adult thinks more rationally, children think more emotionally. Life is new to them. Experiences happen and they don’t know how to react in a helpful way, so they act out.

The good news is you can teach them.

What do your children do to calm down? To relax? What makes them happy?

If all of these questions are followed by electronics, you have a problem. Electronics are just part of our lives, but they shouldn’t be used all the time.

Build relaxation and down time into the routine. Make a list with your child of what would help them. Buy some fun things to add to a relaxation box. Make a playlist of relaxing music. Get some books from the library on feelings. Work on it together. Build a calm down spot.

Practice when they are calm. Trying new strategies in the moment is not the time to teach them. When big emotions come up they can start using the tools they practiced while they were calm.

If you are stuck or need a visual to help I will have instant downloads in my etsy store coming soon!

Why Can’t my Kids Just Get Along?!

You had more than one child so they could grow up together. A live in best friend. A perfect playmate.

Instead you have two beings that despise each other. Your playroom is a war zone.

So why don’t they get along?

So many reasons. Here are a few possibilities.

  • Too big of an age difference (I don’t want to play with them, they’re too little)
  • Too close of an age difference. (I haven’t had enough time with mom and dad and now a new baby is moving in!)
  • Very different personalities (they don’t have a lot in common)
  • One is an introvert, one is an extrovert
  • Parents give more attention or spend more time with the better behaved child
  • Parents give more attention or spend more time with the child that struggles with behaviour.
  • Do they struggle with social skills, self regulation, poor tolerance (or all of the above)?

Can you say yes to one or more of the suggestions above?

What do you feel is the issue? Are your expectations too high? It’s not normal to get along with your family all the time.

Did you introvert child have any down time after school? If they are over stimulated at school and then they are expected to come home and play with their very active sibling, that can be hard. Some down time can help them gain back some energy and then they can go play with their sibling.

Do your children know how to compromise, to take turns, to talk it out instead of physically fighting it out?

These skills need to be taught and then practiced. If you’re too tired or frustrated yourself to work on this, the children will pick up on this. Is it really a priority?

I’m asking you questions because I’m not in your home. Step back and see what is really going on. They may need you to role model how to negotiate or be a good loser.

You may give in to one child all the time, because you don’t want to deal with the fight or the meltdown. This gets very frustrating for the children that do well. These feelings of anger and resentment can lead to sibling conflict.

Lay down the foundation. They may not be best friends, but it can get better. Be patient, this can take some time.

A Natural Consequence Can Be the Best Lesson

Natural consequences are the ones that happen on their own.

1. Not wearing a hat on a cold day.

2. Forgetting an umbrella on a rainy day.

3. Going to bed late when you have a early morning practice the next day.

4. Waiting too late to study and getting a bad grade.

As parents we have to let some of these consequences happen. The exceptions would be if there was a safety concern.

When they do happen, don’t shame them or rub it.

I told you so

This phrase may be hard to hold back. But try your hardest not to say it. Instead use this opportunity to do some problem solving.

Let’s do a “Do over”.

Validate their struggle. How can they do things differently? Give them time to think it over. This may take more than one conversation.

Offer some suggestions, but don’t jump in to fix everything. The key to problem solving, is working it out yourself. So you can do it again later when trouble comes up.

Problem solving works best if its a collaborative effort.

Your children did support, but they don’t need all the answers. If you give them everything, they don’t learn to think on their own. The next time they aren’t around you and a sticky situation comes up, do they think “What was it that mom told me to do?”. They go ahead and do what comes naturally and impulsively.

The skill of impulse control and problem solving in the heat of the moment can take awhile to master.

The brain is under construction until 25

Your children need time to practice. Don’t overprotect them from situations that can lead to learning.

Natural consequences are the best teachers.

Do you feel like you are barely keeping your head above water? Life can be different.ย 

Sometimes we get stuck in a cycle that is not helpful. We feel like there is never enough time to relax and enjoy the smaller things in life. To save time we end up doing more. Making us tired, resentful and stuck in a rut.

How can you make it a #teamfamily house hold? Watch my video at the link below.




How to Pick your Word of the Year

Why a word of the year? It’s a focus, a motivator and a reminder of what you are working on for the year.

Write a paragraph, or more of your intentions for the year. What you want for yourself, what your goals are. When you finish, read over the paragraph and look for a strong message. 

(I will also take this facebook message and run with it)

Last year I started with one word Focus. After some more thought, I added another two: Fantastic and Grounding. 

I put a lot of effort into focusing on what was important: 

  1. My self care
  2. Quality time with family and friends
  3. Finding my passion in life. 

This is where my entrepreneurial fire got ignited. I started reading, researching and talking to people about my aspirations.

I started working out, being more mindful and having more fun! It was a fantastic year in many ways. 

This year I feel empowered and excited about all the possible opportunities. 

The main themes that came out of my intentions paragraph were:

  • Continue moving life in the direction I want it to go
  • I want to feel fulfillment, passion, excitement
  • I want to learn more and feel stimulated each day
  • Surround myself with like minded people, laugh, love and be positive
  • Push forward, create success and fulfilment

I already started doing these things last year. I stepped away from  fear and into the world of faith, hope and taking chances. 

This year I continue on my path with these three words to help me on my journey:

                      Fulfillment โค  

                      Empowered ๐ŸŒผ

                      Create ๐ŸŽ‰

 Try it! I’d love to hear your words. Comment below or send me a message.

Happy New Year!

Who Do You Want To Be In 2018?

It’s a new year, a new start. Do you feel you need a re-do, a re-make or a complete makeover? I’m not talking about makeup, hair and clothing. Well, it could be about that but, more importantly how do you feel on the inside? 

  1. Who do you want to be this year? 
  2. How do you want to feel? 
  3. How do start being your true authentic self? 

How are you feeling? 

  • Confident
  • Happy
  • Relaxed
  • Fulfilled
  • Passionate
  • Strong
  • Energetic
  • Smart
  • Motivated
  • Empowered
  • Creative
  • Hopeful
  • Successful
  • Grateful
  • Proud
  • Satisfied
  • Content

How many can you check off? Are you happy with the number? How can you add more check marks to the list? 

How do you feel more confident, happy or grateful for example?

  • Confident:
  1. I can get more active 
  2. Buy some clothing that fits well (instead of trying to fit into the pants from five years ago and feel bad all day)
  3. Smile more often
  • Happy:
  1. Do more things that fill my cup: cuddle with my dog, hang out with friends, read more
  2. Think more positively. Put positive mantras all around you
  3. Spend time with people that make you feel happy. Get rid of the energy suckers in your life
  • Grateful:
  1. Start a gratitude journal
  2. Focus on what you have, instead of what you don’t have

Make goals, write them down. Talk to others about what you are hoping to achieve. Motivate each other. Build up those around you, be inspired by the people you want to be like. It doesn’t need to be a big change. Small consistent steps will slowly lead you to where you want to be. 

Enjoy the journey, focus less on the end result. Make it a priority. Book it into your schedule. You deserve it.

Happy New Year! It’s going to be a great year!

Celebrating with Christmas Traditions

I love all the holidays. Quality time with family and friends is the best part. Each holiday brings special moments. Traditions fill my heart with a special joy.

As Christmas Eve draws near I think about all the happy memories. As a Polish family we have many traditons on Christmas Eve. St. Nick visits on Christmas Eve asking the  to answer a question or sing a song for their gift (we never had St.Nick visit our home, but we opened gifts Christmas Eve because of this).

Our meal is very specific. No meat is allowed, but fish and seafood is abundant. Beet borscht, pickled herring, cod, potatoes just to name a few. My job is making the paszteciki. It’s a mushroom filling with a bread pastry around it. I have to make double the amount because my kids won’t stop eating them!

This year I made my own pastry..yup I bought the pastry before. With more time to experiment, I decided to make my own. The best part was having my daughter ask to help me. The seal of approval was the second best part. 

Tradition number 2: a Christmas ornament to commemorate the year. Each of the kids get one and I buy one for my husband and I together. 

I buy a “Ruby” ornament from The Bombay company each year. We do love our dog ๐Ÿ˜‰

Our first Christmas together as a married couple.

Disney Vacation 2012. The Elmo and Zoe in the background belong to my daughter, she was a HUGE fan years ago.

As you can see putting up the Christmas tree each year is a stroll down memory lane. 

Tradition number 3: The kids exchange a special gift, a book. They sign the inside and I hope they keep them and cherish them forever.

What traditions do you celebrate? 

Maybe this year you start your own.

Merry Christmas!

It’s the Best Time of the Year. I’m Just too Tired to Enjoy It.

So many expectations, so little time.  

Gifts to buy for: teachers, babysitters, cousins, grandparents, coaches and secret santa exchanges. Meal planning, Christmas baking, wrapping and cleaning.  Christmas parties to attend, grumpy family to deal with and photo sessions to arrange. I could on and on.

How much of this pressure are you putting on yourself? 

  1. Can you simplify? 
  2. Do you have to do it all? 
  3. What are your priorities? 
  4. What are the things that are really important to you?

Warning! These changes can cause you stress. These changes can make those around you upset or angry. Change is difficult, even if it’s a positive change. You will have to set limits and communication is key. Let those around you know the changes you plan on making and then follow through. To do this you will have to tolerate the distress in others, and in yourself. It will take time and lots of practice. 

Each time you set a limit it will get easier. Try it today. You deserve to enjoy the holidays as well.