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Challenge: Raising kids is stressful. Let’s share ways to make it less so.

My Kids in One Picture

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​I have kids that are 20 months apart and they are totally different and yet very similar. But, realizing this early on, has helped in parenting them. My 6 yo can be mad for a solid hour before giving in and getting back to having fun. My 4 1/2 yo can snap out of a bad mood in a second with a simple smile or a joke. Time outs work for one, but not the other. And, yet, they both adore each other and would do anything for the other. One will give up all the stuffed animals in his room, if he thinks his sister would be happier with them. She will feed him all of our goldfish, if she thinks he needs just a little bit more of a snack, after I have said no. 

Getting kids out the door for school can be tough. My time-saving tips are to set out clothes the night before, and ask your children to be a part of the process so that there is no discussion or negotiation in the morning. 

Making lunch the night before is a help as well and involving the children in making lunch may not save time, but can make for a better experience at lunch time. 

Setting out the toothbrush, with toothpaste is a time-saver, as well. 

Backpacks, shoes, jackets and hats are always by the front door and that has helped a lot with getting everyone out on time. 

Waking them up early to have a morning snack together or watch a tv show or read a book is always great, because it starts the day off at home, with a fun activity. 

At the end of the day, stress can get the best of us. It can make parents and kids grumpy. But, laughter and hugs can help. No matter what, I give my kids hugs and kisses, even if they have had a rough morning. Laughter and love are critical to a families well-being. 

I have learned that sometimes, when your kids aren't doing exactly what you want them to do, or if they are not paying attention or simply being kids, its okay to laugh. It's okay to simply wave the white flag and just observe their silliness. Because, the perfect day for kids is having fun with their grownups. And, seeing their parents or caregivers laugh with them, is a pretty special thing for them to witness. This picture sums up my life as a parent and makes me laugh every time I see it. 

So, do the shortcuts that will help make life a little less stressful. Because if you can't enjoy it, you will miss out on moments like the one in the picture. Two crazy kids at Coney Island.



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