Parents want nothing more than to ensure their children are physically and mentally fit, and fully capable of handling social as well as personal situations. Having good self-esteem from childhood is key for growing into a successful and self-satisfied adult.
From a very young age, children are faced with situations that demand confidence, whether it is going to a new school or performing at a spelling competition. So how can you establish confidence in your child to allow them to believe in themselves and face the challenges of everyday life?
1-Give them plenty of chances at success
Children can acquire a great deal of self-confidence if they have achievements littered along their life, regardless of how big or small. Make them feel competent by enabling experiences that let them realize their own capabilities.
This can include encouraging them to sign up for an art competition if they have a natural talent for painting, or to perform at the school play if they particularly enjoy drama class. However, avoid pushing them to do something against their own will.
2-Vocalise your appreciation
As long as the compliments you give are genuine and not misleading, they can go a long way to making your children believe in themselves. Don’t make them believe something that isn’t true as this will only disappoint them upon realization.
3-Avoid using unwarranted labels
This especially applies to calling your child shy or nervous, regardless of how introverted he/she really is. Whether speaking to your child, or about your child to others, using a label such as ‘oh he’s really shy he doesn’t speak very much’, prevents him from doing any different and becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The best approach is to rephrase his reluctant nature by a general statement such as ‘Thomas enjoys listening to other views before expressing his own opinion’.
4-Don’t step in on your child’s behalf
Often when children behave in a shy or hesitant manner, parents have a tendency to step in and perform on their behalf by, for example, answering a question directed at the child by another adult.
Try not to interfere as your child is always in a position to learn from new experiences and situations and could become too dependent on others when faced with something they cannot handle on their own.
5-Avoid coming across as dismissive
Always have a supportive response in situations where your child becomes upset or nervous. Your tone should be full of warmth and understanding. Stating a sentence of comfort such as ‘it looks as though you’re a bit scared around the neighbor’s dog, that’s understandable” as opposed to ‘stop being scared of the
neighbor’s dog, that’s ridiculous at your age’ can make a world of difference.
6-Make your child home-wise
Assigning household responsibilities to your child, which he/she can complete with good ability can also help improve confidence. Whether it is doing the laundry or the dishes, it gives them the chance to trust themselves after being trusted with new tasks, and this filters through to their confidence outside of the
By labeling these tasks as ‘special jobs’ you can entice children into feeling good about what they are doing, even if they are just household chores.
It can sometimes be frustrating watching your child struggle with everyday encounters or shy away from new experiences and responsibility. However, remember that confidence only comes after years of being faced by situations where our strengths and weaknesses are tested and we become familiar with navigating around our fears and reservations.
Try to let your children find their own strengths and then find success in these areas of strength, and support them in this process of trial and error.
About The Author
Every year, it seems as if school lunches are on the up and up. If you have two, three or even four or more kids, these paid lunches can add up so fast! Just like eating out at work, why throw all this money away, when you can do something about it.
If you don't think you have time to pack your child's lunch, it's time to think again! Packing a lunch can be done within a few minutes, if done right.
Offer a Variety
Don't stick with the same ole' peanut butter and jelly every day. If you do, your child is going to get sick of it pretty fast. Instead, try to offer a variety. While you don't have to have something different every single day, try to switch it up throughout the week.
For example, start with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, followed by a ham sandwich, etc. If you have leftover pizza, be sure to throw a pizza in to spice things up. The same can be said about the snacks, vegetables, pudding and fruits.
Your child doesn't want to open up their lunch and see a bunch of blah colors. Instead of sticking to the same old boring sandwich, try to liven up the lunch bag with colors. By adding vegetables and fruits, this is a fantastic way to add color and a lot of nutrition to your child's life.
When packing a lunch, you just have to remember that some fruits and vegetables won't last long in a locker. Try to stick with apples, bananas, tomatoes and berries.
Have Fun With It
This trick tends to work for children who are still in elementary. With their sandwiches, fruit and vegetables,
consider cutting it up into fun shapes and objects. For example, if it's Halloween, consider grabbing a cookie cutter and create a sandwich that looks like a pumpkin. This is a great way to motivate your child to look through most of the food in their bag.
Make it Easy
No child wants to eat something that is messy, like last night's lasagna. Kids, no matter what their age, are going to like easy-to-eat foods. Like what I've mentioned above, try to stick to the finger foods, such as sandwiches, fruits, vegetables and chips. If you're going to pack something, like a pizza, try to cut it up ahead of time, if you have the time.
Chances are you're going to talk with your child before they head out the door. If you do, be sure to take advantage of this. Ask your child what they want in their lunch, but instead of simply asking, give them options. So instead of saying, "Hey, what kind of fruit do you want?" you could say, "Do you want an
apple or banana?" Children love choices, and if you give them viable options, it should be easier to get an answer out of them.
Don't Forget the Treat
So many times, the parents often forget the treat inside of the bag. Yes, while it's great to focus on the great food, you don't want to forget about a sweet treat. Today, there are so many great options that you can choose as a sweet snack. This can include homemade muffins, Rice Krispie treats or a healthy chocolate granola bar.
Now that you know how to spice up your child's lunch, here are some tips to make packing a lot easier:
- Throw chips, cookies and anything else that can last in a pantry inside of a baggie. Store this inside of the pantry so that you can just pick them up and throw them in the bag.
- Set aside one day a week to whip up something fun, such as bread, muffins or cookies.
- Take the meat from last night's dinner and consider using it on sandwiches.
- Lastly, have motivation! Once you get into the habit of doing this, it will become a habit to you. Not only will your child thank you for it, you can save a lot of money by allowing your child to skip the hot lunch line.
Stephanie is from howmuchisit.org. Here, you can find thousands of cost helping guides. Whether you want to know something that is baby or health related, be sure to keep this resource in mind that next time you need to know the cost of something.
Cape Cod Mommies received samples of Ocean Spray's new juices in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions are the author's own.
I am a fan of go-to, tried-and-true meals. As a mom of three, I don't have a lot of time to prepare and fuss with high maintenance dinners. Throw in a 16 year old who ALWAYS has to modify his version of the meal, a picky 4 year old who will NOT stray from her approved menu of acceptable foods, a 2 1/2 year old that tries to eat everyone's food but her own, and a husband that has been working overtime and rushes in the door ten minutes after food is on the table and you have a recipe for one mom who needs herself a refreshing cocktail. I kid.
I "shop" out of my pantry and freezer much of the time, because who really wants to load up two wiggly kids into the car to run to the market to find the exact ingredients a recipe calls for? Not this mama. Typically I marinate chicken in Italian salad dressing or sprinkle with seasonings before baking and serve with egg noodles or rice and some veggies. Nothing fancy.
I had the opportunity to try out some tasty Ocean Spray juice products and decided to try and make a new
version of one of our regular recipes using citrus flavors instead of the usual savory palette I gravitate towards. Would it work with my sometimes-high-maintenance crew??
I pulled some chicken breast out of the freezer the night before and tossed it into a container to marinate in some Ocean Spray Citrus Mango Pineapple 100% juice. The littles drank a bunch of it (I always mix their juice with a bit of water to cut down on sugar
intake as well as stretch our budget). When it was time to prepare dinner, I tossed the marinated chicken breasts onto a pan and added a few handfuls of some fresh pineapple the girls had been snacking on earlier in the day. Into the oven it went.
We love black beans at our house, well except for the picky 4 year old. As a side dish for the chicken, I sautéed a bit of diced onion and green pepper in a bit of olive oil then added a rinsed can of black beans, diced tomatoes and corn along with a dash of cumin and chili powder and a good splash of the citrus juice. In about 15 minutes the whole pan is sizzling and filling the kitchen with ridiculously mouth watering aromas. This is usually when I burn my tongue stealing spoonful's of steaming hot beans while hiding from the family.
As a last minute thought, I pulled a half full jar of corn and black bean salsa from the fridge and mixed in the rest of the pineapple. The chicken was topped with the salsa and the bean mixture was scooped onto a pile of rice. As a special mama treat, I added some pineapple rum to a glass of Ocean Spray Sparkling Citrus Tangerine juice drink. Um.... delicious!!!
The picky eater ate the chicken diced into cubes (after I scraped the pineapple off). The 16 year old made wraps out of his dinner fixings, and the 2 1/2 year old ate from my plate. Obviously. I was a huge fan of the citrus flavor the chicken soaked up from marinating in the juice, and the rest of the family seemed to approve as well. While my culinary skills might not be Top Chef quality, I enjoyed the new flavor profile and am encouraged by this success that didn't take any longer than my regular dinner prep does.
To celebrate the new flavors Ocean Spray has added, we are hosting a giveaway sponsored by Ocean Spray! One lucky Cape Cod Mommies fan/reader will receive: a sample of each of the products (100% Juice Citrus Mango Pineapple, 100% Juice Citrus Tangerine Orange and Sparkling Citrus Tangerine) plus recipes and a cocktail shaker. To enter, simply fill out the form below! Contest will run until November 11, 2013 at 11:59pm EST. Winner will be announced on November 12, 2013. Ocean Spray will be responsible for shipment of the prize package. All entries will be validated, winner will be contacted via the email they provide on the form. Winner has 24 hours to respond otherwise another winner will be chosen.
By: Jennifer L. Long, RN, NCN
Do you have a love-hate relationship with your food? I hear it all the time, people’s love of food and eating become a burden. They try to restrict and deprive themselves from what they love, thus developing a hate for “healthy eating” and “dieting”. Well, I’m here to tell you can quit the dieting and go back to your love for food! It’s all about changing your relationship with food and learning how to make it work for YOU and your body!
Lets talk about the dreaded “diet” for a minute. What is a “diet” to most people? A hated word associated with “I can’t have” or “I shouldn’t eat that” and worse, “If I eat that, I have to work out for 2 vigorous hours to work it off!” This is madness! First of all we need to get back to basics. The word DIET means the foods that make up what we eat on a daily basis, not a period of time where you go without things your body actually needs. All too often people tend to go on a “diet” around or after the holidays out of guilt for enjoying the pies, potatoes and stuffing.
What if I told you that you no longer have to feel that way and can still have what you love from that dinner table at Thanksgiving and for the REST OF YOUR LIFE? Well, its true. It’s all about what I teach my clients, that stabilizing your blood sugar and learning how to eat will avoid spikes and crashes in your blood sugar, preventing fat storage and increase lean muscle. This in turn will ensure stored fat to be released and burned up in the muscle, increased metabolism and sustained energy throughout the day.
So how? The key is learning not to restrict or deprive your body from the key macronutrients it needs everyday. Your body is a fuel as it goes machine, it needs to be fueled every 3-4 hours with protein, fat and carbohydrates to sustain energy and brain function. If you deprive your body and brain of a key element in maintaining homeostasis (balance), your body will go into starvation mode and begin to store fat as a result.
Most “diets” require either a temporary or permanent avoidance of a particular macro and an increase most commonly in protein. Lets say your to restrict on carbohydrates (most common), you avoid these foods for a period of time, how do you feel? Usually, the first few weeks you can maintain, but shortly thereafter, your brain cannot take any more restriction of the one thing it needs most for function, glucose. The brain requires carbs for glucose to maintain focus and energy. So, you eventually think you cave and give into “temptation” and have a bagel or a cookie. So now you go back to eating how you were before, and gain everything you lost and maybe even more! Now you feel an unnecessary moment of FAILURE! Did YOU actually fail? NO! YOU did not fail the “diet”…the diet failed you! Dieting does NOT work because it is not designed to be a lifestyle change. Blood sugar stabilization WORKS because it is exactly how we were designed to eat since the moment we were born. It is something you can do for life. Ditch dieting and learn a better way! I can show you how to eat to live, how to enjoy living and make the most of your workouts, all while looking and feeling your absolute best!
“Transformation Begins With Nutrition”- Jennifer Long, RN,NCN.
There are lots of fun activities going on this weekend on Cape Cod and the surrounding communities in celebration of Halloween and the Harvest Season. If you haven't planned your weekend yet check out some fun ideas here! Getting in the spirit is Melissa, the new owner of Mommy & Me Children's Consignment Boutique in Falmouth! She is having a:
Halloween Trick-or-Treat Open House
(click above for more info)
from 12-5pm tomorrow October 26, 2013.
There will be organic candy for any age trick-or-treater in costume and a $5 off a $10 or more purchase for the big kids (mention Cape Cod Mommies and seeing this on Facebook).
Mommy & Me Children's Consignment Boutique is a great place to pick up clothes for the kids and in just in time for the holidays too! They have beautiful designer baby & children's clothing and accessories at great prices! Something new every day!
Clothing sizes from Newborn - Pre-teen/Juniors! Lots of great baby gear, books. Check out their Facebook page: http://facebook.com/MommyandMeCapeCod
Looking for an adult night out? How about a free night out with a guest where you get to participate in the longest running, albeit bizarre, show running?
Come join them as an audience member in Buzzard's Play Productions offering of:
"The Rocky Horror Show"!
Please check their Facebook Page or their Website for more information!
You can also check out their Facebook event page for show times and to buy tickets online.
Now I mentioned free tickets didn't I? Well enter our giveaway contest and follow the steps with the Promo Simple form below. A random winner will be chosen Wednesday, Oct 30th at 8pm and announced back here on this blog (winner will be contacted by email provided below). The winner can choose to see one of the five shows next weekend. They will also receive a free prop bag to fully participate in the "Rocky" Experience.
Welcome to Liz S., our latest Cape Cod Mom who has joined our blogging team! Read more below her blog for her bio!
By: Liz S
*My 9 year old daughter and I made this together. Kids of most ages could participate in some or all of the steps I.E. unwrapping crayons, gluing them on the pumpkin, holding blow dryer etc
Supplies needed- pumpkin, craft glue or hot glue gun, crayons, hair dryer, newspaper to put down under the pumpkin. We were outside to avoid a splatter catastrophe :)
1. Take the wrappers off of the crayons
2. Break crayons in half depending on size of pumpkin
3. Glue pumpkins around the top stem of your pumpkin
4. Once crayons are secured, use hair dryer on high.
5. Blow the hot air directly on the crayons one at a time, moving around a bit once you get a feel for it. Some crayons splatter, some pool along the stem- just play with it to get the look you want.
This takes some patience! About 30 min of blow drying. Once they melt, the crayon wax hardens and you can instantly move the pumpkin around.
Liz Smith is a wife and mother living in Harwich. After growing up in Scituate, MA she lived in Boston and Salem before meeting her husband and moving to Cape Cod in 2000. She is a licensed preschool teacher working as a nanny. She attends Bridgewater State University as a full time student studying Early Childhood Education and Psychology. Liz returned to school at age 40 after being laid off when her company downsized. After 20 years as a successful retail manager, she started at Cape Cod Community College focusing on a new career and graduated with high honors
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Please see www.tracylamperti.com for more information about family dynamics and helping your children to
thrive. If you would like 1:1 assistance, please contact Tracy Lamperti for a consultation.
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC,
BCETSPsychotherapist, Educator, Consultant
By: Brittany E
We love this recipe that one of our Cape Cod Mom readers (and hopefully soon to be regular contributor), Brittany has submitted to us! We love crock pot recipes and this one sure looks fantastic and tasty, perfect for the colder weather settling in! You can almost smell it! Nom Nom!
Take 1 package chicken tenderloins, 1 package sliced mushrooms, 1 package grape tomatoes sliced and put them all
in crock pot.
Add olive oil & chicken stock, enough to cover the ingredients. Add salt & pepper to taste. Also add 1 clove of elephant garlic.
Cook in a crock pot for 6 hours approximately.
Half a spaghetti squash, seed it & rub the inside with butter. Cover with tinfoil and place in cookie sheet with the open side up. Depending on the size of spaghetti squash, bake for a minimum of 1 hour or a Maximum of 1.5 hours - until you can easily scoop out the spaghetti like insides.
Put spaghetti squash on plate cover in chicken mushroom mixture from crock pot and enjoy!!!
By: Suzanne Golden, M.S., CCC-SLP
At work and at home with my daughter, I find that the iPad is a great tool for learning and fun. Technology is so motivating for children and I use my iPad as a therapy tool and as a reward. Often, the children don’t even realize they are targeting their therapy goals because they are having so much fun playing with the apps!
Here are some of my favorite apps for fun and for therapy.
My Play Home
Developer: Shimon Young
My Play Home is an interactive doll house that is entertaining for all ages! Choose your characters and move them to various rooms in the house to do some exploring. Your character can cook some food, jump on the trampoline or take a nap in the bed. There are always more hidden things to find throughout the house.
· Create sentences about what your characters are doing (He is eating. She is sleeping. They are jumping.
· Give your child verbal directions to follow using the app (“Take the milk out of the fridge, pour it in a glass and give it to the boy.”)
· Go on a scavenger hunt around the house looking for items that begin with your child’s target speech sounds (“lets find everything that starts with /p/”)
Developer: Smith Micro Software, Inc.
Choose your own sock puppet, scenery and props. Then, touch your puppet and speak into the iPad and watch your sock
puppet lip-synch to what you say.
You can create a short film where your sock puppet is the star!
· Create short social scripts and model them using the sock puppets. Watch the video and talk about the social interaction.
· Have your child practice words and sentences with his/her speech sounds using the sock puppets.
Then watch the video together and talk about how well your child produced the sounds.
Toca Boca Apps
Toca Hair Salon 2, Toca Band, Toca Train, Toca Kitchen, Toca House, Toca Store, Toca Birthday Party, Toca Tea Party.
Price: $2.99 each
Toca Boca creates colorful, engaging and easy to use apps for kids. Cut and style hair in the salon, have a jam session with the Toca band or cook up some food in the Toca kitchen. These apps provide hours of fun and learning for kids.
· Follow directions using Toca Kitchen (Find the red tomato, cook it on the stove, then feed it to the boy)
· Work on turn taking and manners using Toca Tea Party and Toca Birthday Part.
· Label all of the items you can find in the Toca Store and work on money skills/counting while you check out.
I hope you explore some of these apps and I look forward to sharing more of my favorite apps with you in some of my future blog posts!
The Emotional Climate of the Family Part 3 of 3
(Part of the Family Climate Series)
by Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
“I screamed, from the depth of my inner being, ‘WHAT’S THAT?!!!!’”
Fifteen or so years ago, my husband and I were coming home from Hyannis at dark, down the stretch known as “suicide alley.” Up ahead, I saw a large object right in our path. To me, it looked like a large railroad tie lying across the road. Lacking confidence to say something, because surely my husband, who was driving, saw it also, I kept quiet. As we got closer and closer my eyes got wider and wider until…I couldn’t take it for another second. I screamed, from the depth of my inner being, “WHAT’S THAT?!!!!!” My husband, assuming all along it was a big cardboard box and he would just drive over it, cut the wheel sharply, sending us on a skidding, tire screeching adventure around the object, back toward the centerline, back again to the shoulder for a double 360, to finally rest on the shoulder. We looked back and saw the car behind us drive right over the cardboard box.
My husband is an excellent driver, I must say! Had I just mentioned my concern a little earlier, the harrowing experience could have been avoided, though he did do a fine job saving our lives had it been the board I thought it was.
Many times, couples and families come for my services at a point where they feel like a sharp turn is needed. They think they can make a drastic change, or that I will use my expertise to facilitate some drastic change to solve the problem.
Discouragement and defeat follows and they are no further ahead.
In my many blog posts over the last year, I have given lots of suggestions to strengthen the family. They are
meant to be used like turning the wheel gradually. A mom who decides one day, “Ok, no more TV, processed foods or video games; Family dinner will be Monday night; Game night on Wednesday; Movie night on Friday….” is likely to be frustrated and met with a lot of opposition from young children, teens and their spouse.
Consider starting with a sit down with your partner. Brainstorm qualities that you each of you would like to improve in the family:
· Siblings being kinder to each other;
· Family member being more interested in each other and their day;
· Squashing sour attitudes;
· More working together;
· Happier interactions at the dinner table;
Or maybe there are individual issues:
· Jesse is anxious all the time and we want to help her as a family to feel more calm;
· Arnold gets all of the attention because he is so hyper;
Or let’s say you are a single mom. Get together with a trusted friend or family member. Maybe “Aunt” Susie can come to dinner every other Monday night and bring her sunny attitude!
You name it, every family has areas that could be improved. And let me be very clear; children do better academically and make better social choices when they live in a family that has a positive emotional climate.
If you need any assistance with the emotional climate in your home, please contact me. I would love to help you complete the “Family Report Card” series, which helps couples and families identify strengths and needs and formulate reachable goals.
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Please see www.tracylamperti.com for more information about family dynamics and helping your children to
thrive. If you would like 1:1 assistance, please contact Tracy Lamperti for a consultation.
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Psychotherapist, Educator, Consultant
By: Sung Bin
This time of year, we love to collect the many colors of autumn in leaves. There are so many rich reds and yellows and we love to use them to craft decorations. This week we have been reading The Little Yellow Leaf by Carin Berger, a beautifully illustrated tale of a single autumn leaf who finds another brave companion. The book inspired us to make a window decoration with several colorful leaves and some clear packing tape. Technically, you are supposed to use clear contact paper and press the leaves between two sheets of clear contact paper for a transparent leaf decoration but we only had clear packing tape around. First, I laid out strips of the clear packing tape overlapping slightly to form a larger sheet and my little one and I arranged the leaves on the sticky side of the sheet. The fun part is picking out the leaves and pressing them flat on the sticky tape. Then we laid out another sheet made of strips on top of the leaves with the sticky side facing them to form sort of a sandwich with the leaves in between. We cut the finished sheet into the shape of a large leaf and trimmed it with some pieces of colored in paper. The finished product was a collaborative work that made for wonderful window art to usher in the Fall. We enjoyed collecting the leaves and talking about the changes in the season.
By: Gary M. DellaPosta, CPA
Some people are surprised to learn they're due a large federal income tax refund when they file their taxes. Others are surprised that they owe more taxes than they expected. If this has happened to you, then it's time to check your federal tax withholding or payments.
Here are some tips to help you bring the tax you pay during the year closer to what you'll actually owe--and avoid a tax surprise when you file your 2013 tax return next year.
Wages and Income Tax Withholding
Self-Employment and Other Income
Gary DellaPosta is a CPA and founder of the firm: Gary M DellaPosta, CPA's & Business Advisors. A graduate of Bryant
Mark Your Calendars Moms & Dads! Falmouth Academy is hosting an Admission Open House Saturday, October 26 from 2-4pm! Parents in the Cape Cod, the Islands, Plymouth, Marion and surrounding areas are encouraged to visit Falmouth Academy for this event!
My five year old has been telling all our neighbors that we went back in time on Sunday. People laugh and
think she’s pretending, but they don’t understand that she believes this to be true. This weekend we went to King Richard’s Faire in Carver. Once you leave the parking lot and enter “Carvershire”, it feels as though you’ve stepped through time directly into an English Renaissance village. There are finely crafted cottages that serve as “shoppes” throughout the town, with charming details such as a roof in the shape of a dragon. It really was impressive! We visited on a cold and gray day, which meant there were not a ton of visitors and there were more actors interacting with just us. This really helped immerse us into the time period represented and made the girls feel like they were experiencing history.
Of course we HAD to dress up! My big girl decided that she would not be a princess, but a knight instead!
A flurry of messages was sent off and another awesome Cape Cod mama helped me out by letting me borrow a knight costume for her. The little one, as she does most days, dressed as a princess. I dressed up too, my husband laughing at me as I added jewels and crowns all the while saying “It’s for the children!” Sure, sure!
In my preparation research for this trip, I kept reading how very expensive a day at the Faire could be,
since we are on a budget I wanted to try to minimize as many of the costs as possible. We packed a bag full of lunch and snacks for the girls and ourselves to decrease food costs. We also set limits with the girls on the number of rides they could go on and the number of purchases that could be made.
The ride to Carver was an easy 1 hour trip from the Lower Cape and we arrived at 11:00am. We spent the
WHOLE day there, finally leaving at 5:30! Even though it was chilly, the girls never wanted to leave.
Upon arrival we went straight to the costume rental shop, Seams Like A Dream, which is right by the entrance and all the costumes are made by an onsite seamstress. We rented a villager’s outfit for Matt (who clearly married above his station in his marriage to me, a princess). This can be a bit pricy ($30 is the least expensive men’s outfit rental) but it is really fun to feel like a part of the Faire and the quality of costume and service provided by the staff there made it worth it. They have costumes for men, women, and children (even babies!) that range from peasants to royalty. Very fun to explore!
After Matt was appropriately attired, we familiarized ourselves with the schedule for the day and talked
about which shows we really wanted to see and planned out our day. The girls were dying to see the horses and the knights, so we went to see the first joust of the day. One of the cast members, upon seeing that Fiona was a girl knight, explained that girl knights are called Dames instead of Sirs and told her about Joan of Arc and how she led a whole army. There is no charge for the jousts and they are amazing to watch. The skill of the knights is amazing, the horses are beautiful and their bond with the riders is very clear. It’s obvious how much training and work goes into learning the historic knightly skills that make these joust so exciting! Each quarter of the jousting field is represented by a different knight, and you cheer for the knight closest to you. Our knight won the joust and the girls LOVED it!
After the joust concluded, we went to see Jacques Ze Whipper’s show, which was really fun and I will let
you mommies know that many of the women in the audience enjoyed seeing Mr. Ze Whipper take his shirt off and perform his flaming whip finale. Everyone in the audience enjoyed seeing his skills with the whip as well, but maybe not quite as much as the ladies.
One thing to be aware of is that the performers in the Faire’s shows are not paid by the Faire, they instead
earn their living through the tips they make after the shows are finished. This means it’s very nice to put some money into the hat for these skilled performers. We never felt pressured by the performers but they did let you know that a tip was greatly appreciated. In truth we were happy to do that and the girls enjoyed meeting and thanking the performers afterwards.
After that we brought Fiona to “Knight School” which is also free. There a “Grand Prince” and his knight
give some history about the knight’s roles and duties and gave some sword instruction to the students. All of the young knights were then brought to a stage where they were introduced to King Richard himself. The young knights were then knighted by King Richard and introduced on stage as Sir (or in Fiona’s case Dame). Coco and some of the other young princesses were also made “Ladies of the Realm” at that point and introduced as Lady to audience. The King and his court of nobles then invited the young knights and ladies to parade through the Faire with them, which both girls really enjoyed. Everyone bowed and clapped as the
parade went through. The parade ended on the jousting field and King Richard congratulated all the young knights and ladies and then invited them to stay for the next joust.
This was a real highlight of the day for them, Fiona has been telling everyone that she was knighted and it made the girls feel so special to be involved in the show in this way. The school, the knighting, the parade,
being on the jousting field – this was all free and simply a part of attending knight school. For those who have been scared off from attending the Faire because of cost, I am here to say that it is possible to have a great time at the Faire without going bankrupt!
We stayed and watched the second joust because the girls really couldn’t get enough of the horses and
knights. One thing to know is that there is a storyline to the jousts that I wasn’t aware of, the first joust ends with all four knights having won a different contest within the joust. The second joust ends with a final victory
by only one knight. One of the defeated knights ends up being a very sore loser and has one of the other knights shot by an arrow – which fortunately doesn’t hurt him because of his armor. However this sets up a challenge between the knights for a final joust at the end of the day which is to be fought “to the death”! Having two very sensitive kiddos, we purposely chose not to attend the final joust of the day, knowing that it would involve death and fighting. Of course this is all a show, but my two are still young enough that this feels
very real to them and I knew it would be too much for them to process. I’m sure other kids would LOVE that part of it, but that’s for you mamas to decide for your own families.
After the second joust, we decided to have some lunch. We did end up buying $10 worth of food tickets – the
Faire choses to use this ticket system instead of cash which requires you to buy a minimum of $5 worth of tickets. With our $10 worth of tickets we were able to buy two big servings of French fries as a treat to supplement our food from home. Not terribly historic but warm and yummy on a chilly day. So, yes, food is
expensive there but you don’t have to buy it and there are some delicious options if you do chose to buy tickets.
Princess Academy was held after lunch and was taught by three princesses of the royal court. They gave
some historical background on princesses and ladies and their roles at court. They taught the girls princess skills such as curtseying and how to rise up those curtseying too you. It was much shorter than knight school, but enjoyed very much by my three year old.
We then went to see some of the amazing craftsmen who have shops at the Faire. Fiona was awestruck by the blacksmith and loved seeing him pound away at making a sword. She could have watched him work all day and would have LOVED to bring home one of the swords he made.
The girls were then allowed to pick two rides each (they all cost about $3/person). First they chose the pony ride, where they were able to ride a tiny pony (for Coco) and an actual large horse (for Fiona) along a wooded path, they really enjoyed themselves and said it was the best pony ride ever!
Next they picked a swinging boat ride where the riders sit in a large boat which has rope pulls hanging
inside of it and one person pulls one rope and the other pulls the other rope which makes it swing back and forth. There are also really large men there that help push the boats high and fast. The girls were shrieking with laughter. This ride also costs $3/person.
These were the only rides we went on as part of our cost containment system, though there were many others that the girls would have loved to have tried. After the rides we thought we would go see the Mud Show, but we didn’t last long as the raunchy humor was far above the girls’ heads and they were getting bored. The show was clearly hysterical for adults and I was bummed out not to watch it. Instead we went over
to see the Tale of the Tiger show. The girls were excited to see this as we had heard there is a Liger (a rare animal that is a combination of a Lion and a Tiger, which I had never heard of before I saw Napoleon Dynamite).
Everything I had read, raved about this show and I was looking forward to it as well. However, the show itself was kind of a dud. Ladies wearing animal prints parade out animals on a leash, including a tiger cub (SO cute!) and a few different tiger breeds, as well as a chimpanzee. They then put them on a table and fed them from a baby bottle. Two of the show’s performers spent the entirety of the show yelling at people that stood up or made any noise in the audience. It just felt weird, it doesn’t seem like the animals would be controlled simply by a leash as many of them are very large, and if it’s so dangerous that people can’t move or make noise in the environment surrounding the animals, it doesn’t seem like the safest choice having them at the Faire. At the end of the show, the performers noted that the liger has now been retired so we would not have the opportunity to see him anymore though they hope to bring some liger cubs to the Faire next year. Though I was disappointed in the shows, the girls enjoyed it and Coco even said it was her favorite part of the Faire.
This was our last show of the day, as it was about time to head home at this point. Though we only caught
a few of the shows, there are many, many more. The shows are repeated through-out the day on different stages throughout the fairgrounds, so there are plenty of opportunities to catch the shows you’d like to see. I’m not sure how appropriate the other shows are for kids, as many of them seemed aimed towards adults.
And this is my one critique of the Faire, it seems to have a bit of an identity crisis, not quite sure if it’s for adults or kids. A lot of it is aimed at adults, though they have created a few kid-specific options like the knight school and princess academy, but there is a lot more to the Faire that would best be enjoyed by adults. There
are tons of artisans there that I didn’t have the opportunity to appreciate and many shows that I would have loved to have seen if I was there without the kiddies.
It was my first time at the Faire, I’ve always wanted to go and I’m so glad we did. The day was full of shows, jousts, lessons, rides, and great people watching. It seemed like there was always a show to be watched and never a lack of entertainment. The cast members were really kind and helpful throughout the day, and went out of their way to make my kids feel special. The kids are already asking to go back and we definitely will, though maybe when the kids are a little older and can enjoy even more of it.
King Richard’s Faire is open until October 20th, go check them out and let me know what you think! If you’ve been before, what was your favorite part? What did your kids like?
By Meghan B
I can’t believe that a month has gone by! In the past month I feel like so much has happened. I’ve had the pleasure of hosting four successful parties. I’ve also met two of my companies start swell goals, earned free gifts from Thirty-One, was third on my team for September sales, and booked parties in November and December! I’m so excited! Whew……I’m exhausted thinking back on it. But it’s been so much fun!
Don’t mind my feet in this picture J I wasn’t feeling too well when I took it, but I was really excited to meet my first selling goal and get a gift from Thirty-One.
And then, just the other day I got more gifts for meeting my sales goals! Woo hoo!
I have NEVER thought that I would enjoy direct sales, but I am. It’s giving me a chance to challenge myself, meet and reconnect with people, and get out of my comfort zone. This weekend I will have the opportunity to leave my comfort zone a little more, I’m going to be at a vendor fair, selling some of Thirty-One’s product’s and trying to get my name out in the community so that I can book more parties. I am trying to get out of my circle of friends and family as fast as I can possibly do so. I have AMAZING friends who have been willing to
have parties, but I certainly don’t want to be that friend that is always asking people to have parties. My friends know how much fun I am, now it’s time for strangers to get to know that too :)
By Kelli DiDomenico
Halloween is a spooky holiday that many children look forward to every October. It starts with the thrills of visiting your local haunted houses, carving silly jack-o-lanterns with your family and friends, trick or treating for yummy candy and of course creating your very own crazy, silly and creative costumes that don’t break the bank.
It’s important, however, to balance fun along with safety, when we think about celebrating Halloween. Everyone certainly wants to have a safe, fun, inexpensive and great Halloween night that the entire family can enjoy. All it takes to accomplish these goals is some easy safety tips as a guideline and some creative, homemade costume designs that can fit everyone’s budget. Halloween season is a great opportunity to bring families together to engage in some family-friendly activities for little or no cost. All it really takes is some elbow grease, teamwork and a lot of creativity.
First things first – all parents need to know how to make Halloween as safe as possible for you and your child, before you can think about creating that fabulous, one of a kind costume for trick or treating.
· Supervision - Children under the age of 12 should be with an adult at all times. Never let your children too far ahead of you. The rule of thumb is that they should always be in your line of vision. It’s very important to educate your children to never go into a stranger's house. No matter how nice they seem, it is important to stay on the doorstep and leave promptly after you have received your treat.
· Precautions - Don’t forget to decorate trick or treat bags, costumes and all outer wear with reflective tape or stickers and choose light colored costumes to improve visibility. Your children will be out later when it is darker and it is important to be able to see them at all times. Choose face paint and make-up instead of masks, which can obstruct a child's vision. Have kids carry glow sticks or flashlights in order to see better, as well as to be seen by drivers.
· Check All Candy – Always remember to inspect all treats for signs of tampering before children are allowed to eat them. Candy should be thrown away if the wrapper is faded, torn, or if the candy is unwrapped.
· Obey Traffic Laws –Safety comes first…always use sidewalks and traffic signals when walking around your neighborhood. Cross at corners, make sure to follow the traffic signals and if there are no sidewalks, make sure to walk with the traffic.
Dressing up in costumes are certainly a fun Halloween tradition, but purchasing costumes can become very expensive for families, especially in these difficult economic times. There are a number of inexpensive ways and things you can do to create a unique, amusing and silly costume for your child and have fun while you are doing it! Encourage your child to first explore clothing and other accessories that you may have at home that can be used for a costume. Then you can spend a small amount of money on special accessories for them to create that one of a kind outfit. Here are some great ideas…
· All Black clothing = black cat or a bat
· All Red clothing = devil, red M&M or skittle (use a little tape for the M on the shirt!)
· All white clothing = angel
· Pajamas = a baby
· Jeans and a flannel shirt = A cowboy
· Branches, brown paper bags, string, glue – scary Halloween Tree
· Sports uniforms and equipment – basketball, hockey, soccer, golf, soft ball or baseball player…
It's also very easy for your older child to dress like his or her favorite television or book character by using things from home. You can use recycled materials to create many unique costumes as well. Put some holes in a cardboard box for a child's head and arms. Your child can be a TV, a Rubik's cube, a dice. Let them use their imaginations to create whatever they think will be a hit in their neighborhood.
Other low-cost ideas…
· Take a trip to visit your local Salvation Army, thrift store or Savers or any local resale shop that may sell gently used costumes and accessories that can be an affordable option for many families. You may be surprised at what a great selection they have for costumes and accessories.
· Start a Costume Swap with your family, friends and neighbors. It’s simple – just have everyone bring their old costumes to your swap and exchange away. Remember to set the ground rules beforehand. You may also want to invite your child’s childcare or school to get involved in a costume swap event. It’s a great activity for their PTO’s or Parent Committees to get involved with during this season. The opportunities and ideas can be endless and lots of fun for all ages!
Halloween is a great, family-friendly tradition that allows us the opportunity to spend this holiday with each other. So take advantage of the season and spend quality time with the people you love, make some life long memories in the process and stick to your budget. Happy Trick or Treating!
Kelli DiDomenico brings over 20 years of experience to her role at The Children's Workshop as Director of Parent and Community Relations. Kelli earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Social Work from Rhode Island College. She was the Director and Owner of her own School Age Program and a Program Manager for Therapeutic child care before rejoining the TCW team in 2010. She is also a very active member of the communities we serve. The Children’s Workshop is located in South Dennis and Bourne and provides learning programs and quality care for ages six weeks through twelve years. Visit www.ChildrensWorkshop.com for more information.
By: Jennifer L. Long, RN, NCN
October is here! Oh how I love the fall colors, the fall themes and especially the fall FOOD! This month makes me think of two MAJOR things, PUMPKINS and HALLOWEEN! With that being said this can also pose as a stressful season for anyone struggling with weight management or children with food allergies. I plan to cover the nutritional benefits of pumpkin and how it can help you lose weight as well as alternative goodies for trick-or-treating.
When you think of a pumpkin, what comes to mind? Well, for the average person I would assume, the color orange, jack-o-lanterns, carving, pies and maybe even Cinderella! Since we know there will not be a fairy godmother changing our pumpkins into beautiful fairy tale coaches, lets re-think this whole pumpkin idea and switch gears into how these beautiful veggies can benefit our health.
Pumpkins can boost your immune system because they are loaded with vitamin A and vitamin C to help fight the common cold; they are packed with antioxidants and can even improve your skin. They contain phytosterols, which lower your LDL (bad cholesterol). Struggle with digestion issues? Grab some pumpkin and reap the fiber benefits, which also will aid in keeping your blood sugar stable and help you shed a few extra pounds. One cup of pumpkin contains 3 grams of fiber and only 49 calories.
There are multiple uses for pumpkins. Carving, baking, cooking and even spa treatments! When shopping this October, grab a fresh pumpkin or even a few cans that can be convenient for quick use.
Trick-or-treating advice: If you are aware a child in your neighborhood struggles with a food allergy, get together with your neighbors and offer a special goody bag for that child to be able to enjoy going house to house in their costume and fit in with the other superheroes and princesses. If you are a parent of a child with a food allergy, talk to your friends and neighbors and offer to make goody bags to be handed out to your child as they bounce from yard to yard. Goody bag ideas are stickers, little party favor toys, markers, coins, etc.
Here are 2 recipes for a PUMPKIN SPICE SMOOTHIE
VEGAN PUMPKIN SPICE RECIPE: makes 2 servings
2 CUPS ALMOND MILK
½ CUP ROLLED OATS
CHIA OR FLAX SEEDS
1 CUP CANNED OR FRESH PUMPKIN
1 FROZEN RIPE BANANA
2 TSP CINNAMON
GROUND GINGER/ NUTMEG
MAPLE SYRUP (optional on top at the end)
PROTEIN BOOST with HEMP PROTEIN
FOR A THICKER CONSISTENCY ADD ICE
VANILLA PUMPKIN SPICE SMOOTHIE: makes 2 servings
2 CUPS ALMOND MILK
2 SCOOPS MONAVIE VANILLA RVL SHAKE MIX
1 CUP CANNED OR FRESH PUMPKIN
PUMPKIN SPICE/ NUTMEG
For nutrition consulting & to get your Monavie RVL please emailRNutrition2013@gmail.com or call (508) 360-2032
Jennifer L. Long, RN, NCN DBA RNutrition Health & Wellness
"Transformation Begins With Nutrition"
Would you believe it….
if I told you that of elementary age children who come to see me for therapy, I could tell you where they went to preschool by broadly assessing their emotional intelligence? Partly because of my experience with so many children, but MOSTLY because some preschools are really THAT AWESOME!
The Emotional Climate of the Family Part 2 of 3
(Part of the Family Climate Series)
by Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Some children are very intuitive when it comes to either own and other’s emotions. By and large, however, a
good early education makes a huge difference in a child’s social, emotional AND academic success.
Children begin to develop their emotional intelligence in toddlerhood, at the dinner table, in their play groups, on visits to Grandma’s house, at the grocery store, when they use imaginary play with their dolls and toys and when they are watching TV, hence, the problem with “Sponge Bob” and the like.
In our day, “permissive parenting,” where the child is given a free pass for bad behavior because they, “need a nap,” “are in the ‘terrible twos’,” are just being a pain,” they are being robbed of the chance to begin to develop their EQ (emotional intelligence).
When we talk about “Emotional Intelligence” we are talking about the following;
1. Self-awareness – knowing what our feelings are and self-confidence in our ability to do things.
2. Social Awareness – understanding what others are feeling and the ability to interact with different people.
3. Self-management – being able to handle our emotions, deal with setbacks when pursuing goals.
4. Relationship Skills – being able to handle our emotions in relationship to others, dealing with peer pressure, conflicts and asking for help.
5. Making Decisions – being able to consider different angles and take responsibility for choices.
Ok, I know. You are thinking, “I know a bunch of adults who missed the preschool primer.” Or maybe you are thinking YOU missed it! Not to worry. There is help.
I thoroughly enjoy assessing young children when it comes to Emotional Intelligence. It is so fun to watch how children think things through (when I ask mom or dad not to interfere).
Children need a reference, even when a facial expressions is shown on a card. When a friend has a “perplexed” look on their face, the child obviously doesn’t have that word in their bank, so they have to fill it in with another word. A parent may show an expression that the child interprets as “angry” when the more accurate term might be “frustrated.” It is not enough to just build up the child’s word bank. They need to associate the appropriate feel with the expression and terminology. This takes time, experience and education.
Through a variety of therapy tools, I can assess your child’s stage of emotional intelligence and make suggestions to take them to the next level. Absent of other significant “issues” in the child’s life, I can
accomplish this in 1 session, depending on the level of engagement from your child, make suggestions and follow up in 6 weeks to reassess. With some great tools and guidance, your child will have made excellent
progress in a short time. Feeleez and Kimochis are just two of the tools I use for assessment.
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Cape Cod Mommies was given this opportunity from NaturallySavvy.com to review the Free e-book: Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid's Lunch Box. We received no compensation for this review and the thoughts and opinions belong to the author.
“As parents, we’re not immune to temptation… It’s easy to be drawn in by conveniently packaged foods promising to save time, especially in the morning rush.”
I would say that quote from Andrea Donsky and Lisa Tsakos’ eBook, “Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid’s
Lunch Box” sums up my personal relationship with packaged foods nicely. I want to provide nutritious and
healthy meals for my son. I make efforts to minimize packaging, keep sugar low, and offer a variety of veggies and fruits with his meals. I am also lucky as my son, while picky at times, is a pretty adventurous eater and broccoli is one of his favorite foods. That being said, it can still feel overwhelming to keep up on all of the things one should or should not be feeding their child. Growing up in the 80’s when Velveeta cheese was a staple ingredient in at least one of my weekly dinners and my lunch box included a can of Coke and a bag of Double Stuffed Oreos, it is easy to rationalize that, “I turned out fine” and avoid thinking too much about ingredients.
But a lot has changed since I was a child. As consumers we are able to more easily arm ourselves with knowledge (thanks to the almighty Internet) and manufacturing processes continue to incorporate more and more artificial ingredients into foods (to make more money) while packaging and marketing them towards our
What I like most about this eBook is that well first, it is FREE, and second it condenses a whole bunch of information into an accessible and easy-to-read format. You are not lectured or made to feel guilty.
The authors are not out to build themselves up as the Ultimate Moms leaving you feeling like an inadequate parent as you read along. The eBook is designed to empower you with information and teach you some
quick ways to be a better label reader. For all the parents out there with smartphones, you can reference the
eBook right in the aisle of the grocery store.
The eBook includes their list of the “scary seven” ingredients to be mindful of in packaged goods. I totally agree with every item they list and appreciate how they have itemized things to explain why they are worth avoiding for parents who may be less familiar with the negative nutritional impact of a specific ingredient.
You are then provided a side-by-side comparison of similar products, such as two brands of whole wheat bread, to show you how to read product labels and make better choices. I already considered myself pretty knowledgeable regarding their “scary seven” list of ingredients, but when I got to the first product comparison I discovered an ingredient I had not paid much attention to before. DATEM. From the way they describe it this nasty, man-made fat somehow manages to avoid being included in the calorie or fat count on the product
I hopped onto the internet to do a quick search for DATEM, since it was not something I was familiar with.
Several websites come up that describe the chemical structure but none of them discussed any of the claims about hidden fats that the eBook contends. When doing my own research on claims like this I strive to find not-for-profit sites (addresses ending with .org, or educational sites ending with .edu). There were not a lot of those options to choose from. I then noticed that the eBook provides a citation associated with each of
their claims about DATEM. I was able to follow the link about hidden fats to the Weston A. Price Foundation. As a side note, if you are not familiar with the Weston A. Price Foundation nonprofit charity, I highly recommend you read their mission statement.
So my personal conclusion on DATEM is that I would avoid it based on the rationale provided in the eBook, but want to point out that the source they cite is from a 2004 magazine article. While I believe the Weston A. Price Foundation (publisher of article) to be a reputable source of information, it is far different from a peer-reviewed scientific article that follows strict testing standards. Going back to the citation for a minute
though, one of the key points of the article was:
Currently the levels of trans contributed by MGs and DGs are relatively low [NOTE: “trans” is referring to trans fat and “MGs” and “DGs” are other names for DATEM], even when they appear several times in the ingredient list. However, as the public becomes more aware of the dangers of trans fats, the industry may be tempted to add more MGs and DGs containing trans fats in order to obtain the qualities they want in a food without having to list trans fats on the label.
This article was written nine years ago. Trans fats were only added to food labels four years ago in 2009. So I would be highly suspect of any food containing DATEM today simply because the public is FAR more aware of trans fats now than when the article was written. I just pulled out the whole wheat bread I used to make my son’s sandwich this morning and guess what, it contain DATEM. Gross.
So where is this tangent going and why should you care? This DATEM tangent illustrates how much time it takes to investigate and research ONE ingredient that appears on a food label. I did it to make sure that
the conclusions outlined in the eBook follow my own line of thinking when it comes to avoiding ingredients. The point of Label Lessons: Unjunk Your Kid’s Lunch Box is to save you time and condense a lot of research and information that can be difficult to find into an easy-to-read format. They do not shy away from providing sources for each claim, so should you want to do your own additional investigating into a specific ingredient they flag, you can. I appreciate this kind of transparency as it makes me feel confident that
the authors of the eBook are truly out to help parents without any hidden agendas or off-the-wall claims that have no merit.
The eBook is only 27 pages long, so it is pretty easy to read through it, especially since much of the information is organized in bullet points or brief paragraphs. I expect it to be a resource I will refer to a lot as I go about finding products that do not contain any of the ingredients I want to avoid. First up for me is to find a new whole wheat bread.
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