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Precious Moments Babeez | Niagara Region

“I wish I knew about you when I needed you.”  These are words Precious Moments Babeez staff hear all the time.  What is Precious Moments Babeez?  It is a team of pre-natal and postpartum professionals that offer a diverse range of services to support your journey from pregnancy, through childbirth and into parenting.  PMB was founded by Debbie Fazio 8 years ago.  Debbie has three children, two of which are twins.  When Debbie had to go through the birth of her children she found there was little resources for multiples.  So she built this organization from the ground up.  They now service Toronto, Peel-Halton, York, Hamilton-Burlington, Dufferin, Kitchener-Waterloo and the Niagara Region.  Together, these wonderful women work as a team including Naturopaths, Paramedics, Nurses, Doulas and Sleep Consultants.  Some of the PMB services need can be claimed if clients are needing that help financially.  They are also working with community partners on a fund raising project that would help support families who may not be able to afford it.

Meet Natasa Oliveira.  She’s a Professional Doula, servicing the Niagara Region and surrounding locations as the Director for Precious Moments Babeez Niagara Region. 

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Initially Natasa decided to become involved because of mutual friendships, she’s always been the caring, nurturing type.  It opened up a world she didn’t know existed and now she’ll never look back.  Recently Natasa helped a mom with three beautiful 4-5 lb triplets.  She was very involved with their family and found the experience especially rewarding.  “What you get out of supporting a family makes everything worth it.  It’s being there when they need you most.  It’s endless support.”  Natasa says that once the contract ends with a client, the support continues, as they keep in touch and she always offers to continue to help.  Natasa works with a team of 6-7 women servicing Niagara.  She specializes as a labour and postpartum Doula.  As the Director, she intends to roll out some great programs including Babeez Ed, which is a Baby Basics program and Pre-natal classes which Dads will be excited to attend.

This spring PMB will be hosting a baby shower, where pregnant moms can visit and enjoy being pampered.  It’ll be a smaller scale event where pregnant moms can find out more about family friendly professionals available in their community.  For more information on Precious Moments Babeez Niagara, please visit their website.

 

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Beautiful Chore Reminders

A beautiful way to remind our children to participate in our family’s daily activities, without looking too out of place with the decor.

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Just a quick note – if you’re going to do this as well, I would recommend choosing the smaller rocks for smaller chores.  Little children can pick those.  The larger rocks are for tweens or teenagers, able to do more advanced tasks, such as taking out the garbage and emptying the dishwasher.

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Potty Training Time

My Henry.  Completely captivated by Lightening McQueen and all things cars.  He asks to sit on the potty often, wanting to have that alone time where he can choose the short video.  As with all my children, I have many moments every day where I’m sure he is truly the cutest child ever.

potty training help, potty training tips, niagara parenting blogAlthough I’ve succeeded in this three times before, but I have to say, it does not seem to get easier.  What does get better is the ability as a parent to be patient and constantly praise your child for all the little things.  As soon as the experience is one your child doesn’t enjoy, you’ve lost them.  Here are some tips for helping your little one keep wanting to sit on that potty, which is half the battle.  From a mother of four…

  1. Find videos that your child can play on your phone or portable DVD player while sitting
  2. Use a potty seat that he/she is excited about using
  3. Don’t start too early.  If he/she can’t pull up her own pants and you have other children at home, it’s just not possible to be there and see the signs of having to go
  4. If you or your child feel frustrated, take a break and try again later
  5. Use cloth diaper training pants
  6. Read books together about the potty that are gender specific
  7. Offer the potty before every meal or snack time or use a timer, giving them something to look forward to when they’re done trying
  8. Sing potty songs with your child while they are on the potty, just add their name to make them feel even more special
  9. Use lots of rewards, stickers, smarties, whatever makes your child really excited
  10. Hug, praise, kiss, praise, and repeat
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Keeping Bath time Fun

My Lily.  A bundle of energy.  A truly artistic soul.  There are days where she’s up before all of us, so excited to begin a new craft project that she couldn’t wait.  One of her favourite things is using her imagination during  bath time, telling me what she “sees” in the sky as I rinse the shampoo from her hair.  Unicorns, stars, flowers, and so many different colours of clouds.

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I have four beautiful children. Their ages are 12, 5, 4 and 2. The youngest three still have baths, and it can be chaotic with so many babies.  I keep it as relaxed as possible by playing some simple games throughout   Here are some examples of ways you can keep your child’s bath time fun as well.

Ways To Keep Bath Time Enjoyable

  1. Have plenty of bubbles and water safe toys ready to go, inviting them in to a fun space
  2. If possible, only bath one or two children at a time.  This will reduce the noise and arguing over bath toys
  3. Sing silly bath songs, simply think of a song and change the words to include your child’s name and his/her favourite activities
  4. When washing their hair, have a mirror handy so you can show them the crazy stuff their hair can do when filled with shampoo bubbles
  5. Allow them to help, washing their hair and feeling the shampoo bubbles between their fingers
  6. When rinsing their hair, ask them to look up at the ceiling and tell you what colour the sky is today.  What else do they see in the sky?  (Using their imagination, of course)
  7. When they’re done, invite them out by asking them if they want their towel wrapped like a hot dog (arms tucked in at their sides and towel tightly wrapped all around them) or like a superhero (towel fastened in front with a clip, like a cape)
  8. Have a relaxing activity to look forward to after the bath, like story time or a small snack like crackers and water before bed
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Encourage Them To Follow

There are days when things are so hectic, it can be hard to stop and reason with my little ones. Sometimes I just need them to follow me to the next errand that needs to be accomplished.  To keep things fun and save time, I use the distraction technique. Here’s a quick list of ways you can keep things fun while they follow you as well.

    1. “Let’s walk like dinosaurs, with really big steps.”
    2. “Let’s fly like magical fairies.”
    3. “Let’s form a line like a train and make choo choo sounds.”
    4. “Let’s walk like and talk like robots all the way to the van.”
    5. “Let’s take little tiny steps together.”

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Children are much more willing to listen to a light-hearted game request.  I do not recommend doing this all of the time, however.  It’s important that they learn to listen to you without games as well.  In the real world when they’re older, their boss won’t make everything fun.  Consistency is necessary and I use Jo Frost’s “naughty step” technique.  At this point though, they are children.  You are forming a bond with them that will lead them in the right direction throughout the course of their lives.  It’s ok to have some fun doing it.

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What Type of Parent Are You?

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about parenting.  Mostly because I started this blog, but also because I want to understand myself more.  I want to feel secure in my parenting methods and know what to do as situations arise.  I tend to like to be organized so preparing for situations before they happen seems to make sense.  Here’s a quiz on figuring out what kind of parent you are.  There are many different types of parenting styles, but this quiz focuses on Authoritarian, Permissive and Authoritative types.

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Here are their listed descriptions:

“An authoritarian parent ‘attempts to control a child’s behavior and attitudes, stressing the importance of obedience to authority and discouraging discussion. Parents who use this method tend to rely upon punishment, which is often spanking or other physical measures’.

A permissive parent ‘exercises minimal control. Children of permissive parents are allowed to set their own schedules and activities. Permissive parents generally do not demand the same levels of behavior as authoritarian and authoritative parents’.

An authoritative parent ‘operates on the belief that both the child and the parent have certain rights and that the needs of both are important. The parent is sure that she is in control and doesn’t need to assert physical force to keep the child on the right track. Rather, an authoritative parent is more likely to control her child by setting rules and explaining why these rules are important and why they must be followed’.” -Pedatrics.about.com

 

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Overcoming the Busyness | Self Care

While consistently teaching your little ones, it’s incredibly important to take care of yourself in order to truly truly help them learn and grow.  Here are some tips to follow to keep you from feeling overwhelmed.

Go to sleep at a reasonable hour.  I have to confess, this is one of my biggest problems.  I tend to try to get as much done as I can while my children are asleep, that way I can spend more time with them during awake hours.  It’s counterproductive.  If we get the sleep needed each night, we’ll have the energy required to be able to accomplish so much more.

Turn off the electronics, whether it be your phone, computer, or television.  Time spent on those things isn’t productive for you or your family, unless you’re reading this blog, in that case after this post turn it off.

Make a list, and then do it.  It may not be everyone’s favourite thing to do, but making a list will help take a load off your mind, since you no longer have to hold that information inside, and you can then focus on doing those tasks.  Once it’s written, get started.

Stay home.  Getting things done at home is pretty much impossible when you’re not there.  As much as you may love going out to various functions and spending time with others, if you prioritize your families needs you will find that staying home will be the answer to getting more work done.

Schedule time away.  It’s important to get away from everything at least every once in a while.  For me, I find that once a month is sufficient.

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Teeth Brushing Troubles?

When I discuss life and love with people, I always talk about my children.  When I mention that I have four they usually don’t believe me, and they always, always say “wow, you’re busy!”  It’s so true, my little ones are 12, 5, 4 and 2.  Life around here is busy.  How do I balance children and work?  How does my house stay tidy?  How do I convince my little ones to listen to me?  Phil, my wonderful, supportive husband is a large part of the reason for my sanity.  Another reason is constant prayer for patience.  Yet another is this wonderful creative brain.  I’ll share some of the creative things that we have learned to do as parents that make life easier.  Here’s my first post on that subject.

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To make teeth brushing time a little easier, try reading Robert Munch’s “Mmmm Cookies” to your children at bedtime.  Put extra emphasis on the teeth brushing that Christopher’s’ parents have to do after eating play clay cookies.  After the story, give your children imaginary play clay cookies and make similar sounds to those repeated in the book.  They will want to go brush their teeth just like they did in the story.  You can also download the audiobook here.

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Brush their teeth with the lights off and flashlights only.  Your kids will love the unexpected nature of this one, and it’s very easy to do.  The flashlights are also helpful for inspections by parents afterward.

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Sing a silly teeth brushing song.  They say children should brush their teeth for two minutes, so make it a long song, that way they continue to brush longer.  This will help keep brushing their teeth a fun experience.

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Pretend you’re a dentist.  Speak in an accent.  Count their teeth just like when they’re at the dentist and if you notice any spots that need extra attention, you’re the dentist now so you can help them out.

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Let them brush yours.  It sounds ridiculous, but they love to have the control over that brush.  It tickles like crazy and you will all be laughing so hard, you’ll wonder why you never tried this before.

I do not consider myself an expert on parenting, but I do try my hardest each day to keep things fun for my little ones.  Life’s too short.  Make each day count.