By: Sung Bin
In an effort to save some money on organic baby care products, I set out to make my own shampoo for my household. I wanted to make something that was natural and organic with ingredients that I could name and know. The California Baby Shampoo that I have been using for my toddler was great but the price tag for a family size bottle was not. Plus I wanted to be able to use it too so we would just use one kind that was safe for all. Anyway, this turned out be a pretty humorous task. I experimented with a few recipes I found online, mostly using Dr. Bronner’s Castile Soap as the base. There were quite a few concoctions, some were too watery, too oily, too messy, but my toddler bared with me through it all. She was my guinea pig in my quest to make the perfect natural shampoo and at certain times her hair was a bit too scraggly or oily.
While, I haven’t found a perfect recipe yet, I have found a decent mix that kept our hair clean. The castile soap was also amazing for other uses so we use it as a body wash and hand wash. You can probably try any brand of castile soap for a shampoo but I liked the Baby Mild Shikakai from Dr. Bronner and I purchased a larger size bottle. For my coarser hair, I use the soap full strength with a few drops of rosemary essential oil in a small pump bottle. For my daughter’s hair and for a bubble bath I use a foam soap dispenser since she does not need as deep a clean for her fine hair. For her shampoo/bath wash I dilute the baby castile soap about ¼ part soap and ¾ part distilled water and a drop of vitamin e oil, and a few drops of lavender
and orange essential oils. My husband was not as excited about using a few pumps in the water for a bubble bath because it wasn’t like a typical bubble bath wash. It does not make suds but it does lather pretty well. I got the foam dispenser idea online too and since you use less soap, it lasts longer. The best part of making my own shampoo is that I can add any essential oil. Just a few drops of eucalyptus is great for a bath wash for colds or I can make a batch with lavender for relaxing. I’ll have to keep working on the
bubble bath but so far the shampoo has been great and the economic bottle will last us quite a while.
Lullaby Muffins -see below
By: Michelle Donaghy, Pediatric Sleep Consultant – Certified Gentle Sleep Coach
Nothing will substitute your child learning independent sleeping skills but here is a fun bit of information that may help at bedtime and get the sleepy hormones stacked in your favor.
#1 Bananas. They're practically a sleeping pill in a peel. In addition to a bit of soothing melatonin and serotonin, bananas contain magnesium, a muscle relaxant.
#2 Chamomile tea. The reason chamomile is such a staple of bedtime tea blends is its mild sedating
effect - it's the perfect natural antidote for restless minds/bodies.
#3 Warm milk. It's not a myth. Milk has some tryptophan - an amino acid that has a sedative - like effect - and calcium, which helps the brain use tryptophan. Plus there's the psychological throw-back to infancy, when a warm bottle meant "relax, everything's fine."
#4 Honey. Drizzle a little in your warm milk or herb tea. Lots of sugar is stimulating, but a little glucose tells your brain to turn off orexin, a recently discovered neurotransmitter that's linked to alertness.
#5 Potatoes. A small baked spud won't overwhelm your GI tract, and it clears away acids that can interfere with yawn-inducing tryptophan. To up the soothing effects, mash it with warm milk.
#6 Oatmeal. Oats are a rich source of sleep - inviting melatonin, and a small bowl of warm cereal with a splash of maple syrup is cozy - plus if you've got the munchies, it's filling too.
#7 Almonds. A handful of these heart-healthy nuts can be snooze-inducing, as they contain both tryptophan and a nice dose of muscle-relaxing magnesium.
#8 Flaxseeds. When life goes awry and feeling down is keeping you up, try sprinkling 2 tablespoons of these healthy little seeds on your bedtime oatmeal. They're rich in omega-3 fatty acids, a natural mood lifter.
#9 Whole-wheat bread. A slice of toast with your tea and honey will release insulin, which helps tryptophan get to your brain, where it's converted to serotonin and quietly murmurs "time to sleep."
#10 Turkey. It's the most famous source of tryptophan, credited with all those Thanksgiving naps. But that's actually modern folklore. Tryptophan works when your stomach's basically empty, not overstuffed, and when there are some carbs around, not tons of protein. But put a lean slice or two on some whole-wheat bread
mid-evening, and you've got one of the best sleep inducers in your kitchen.
For an extra treat, here's the ultimate sleep-inducing snack...
Makes 12 low-fat muffins
Between the bananas, the whole wheat, and the honeyed touch of sweetness, these muffins are practically an edible lullaby.
· 2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour
· 1/2 teaspoon salt
· 1 tablespoon baking powder
· 2 large, very ripe bananas
· 1/3 cup applesauce
· 1/4 cup honey
· 1/2 cup milk or soymilk
Preheat oven to 350F. In a large bowl, combine the flour (make sure it's whole-wheat pastry flour or you'll produce golf balls, not muffins), salt, and baking powder. In a blender, puree the bananas; add the applesauce, honey, and milk. Blend well. Pour the banana mixture into the dry ingredients and stir until
just moistened. Line muffin tins with paper muffin cups, pour in batter, and bake 30 minutes or until tops are lightly brown and slightly springy.
Per serving: 119 calories; 1g fat; 2.5g protein; 27g carbohydrates; 10g sugars; 133mg sodium; 3g fiber; 35mg magnesium
Look for my next blog post where we will talk more about Healthy Sleep Habits for your Children and I will answer more of your questions. If you have a question you would like me to answer please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll include it in a future blog.
Michelle is a Pediatric Sleep Consultant and Certified Gentle Sleep Coach who offers parents a gentle and loving approach to their sleep problems. Through her years as a therapist, a mother and a sleep coach, Michelle’s approach offers tired parents an alternative to the cry it out method. Her proven solutions are medically and developmentally appropriate and look at all aspects of your child to gently get them the sleep that is so important to the entire family.
By: Heidi Ingram
Bodily-Kinesthetic Intelligence is the ability to use one's whole body to skillfully express ideas and feelings (e.g. as an actor, an athlete, or a dancer) and facility in using one's hands to produce or transform things (e.g., as a craftsperson, sculptor, mechanic, or surgeon). This intelligence is related to physical movement and the knowledge/wisdom of the body, including the brain's motor cortex, which controls bodily motion.
From an infant's looking for and grasping different objects to
the strength and coordination of an older child, the ability to use the body for self-expression develops through information gained from muscles, sensations, reflexes, coordination, and movement.
The learning environment should reflect opportunities for physical
challenges throughout the day, not just outdoors but indoors as well. The classroom should facilitate tactile experiences and the use of manipulatives in math, science, and language arts. Children who are resourceful in bodily-kinesthetic abilities learn through moving, doing, and touching. They enjoy physical activities, such as those involving hand-eye coordination and hands-on experiments.
Psychomotor-kinesthetic intelligence refers to the ability to control one's body parts skillfully. These children move expressively and are good at both informal and organized games and sports.
Young children with psychomotor talent:
· are skillful at movements such as running, jumping, and climbing, dancing and other movement activities.
· have an accurate and relaxed sense of both static and dynamic balance (hopping on one foot, walking a narrow line, balancing a beanbag).
· use gestures, body movements, and/or facial expression to show or mimic emotions and ideas and can
adapt motor skills in game situations
to reserve one of the
six additional Spots!
Click here for testimonials from Cape Cod parents and
professionals who took this training with Tracy Lamperti.
Thursday, May 9th, 6-9pm
$25 per person
The Children’s Center
115 Sisson Rd.
Harwich Port, MA
(Near the Harwich Police Department)
I urge every parent to take this training or call me directly for assistance. Between my services, other qualified professionals, Children’s Cove, Independence House, and others, every adult; parent, grandparent, aunt, uncle….should be trained, along with EVERY person providing any level of care to a minor.
Our #1 defense and method to keep children safe in our community is to begin to talk about CSA and educate ourselves about CSA.
It is an adult responsibility to protect children from sexual abuse!
Please see www.tracylamperti.com for more information about working with children and families or specifically about sexual abuse.
If you would like 1:1 assistance, please contact Tracy Lamperti for a consultation.
Tracy Lamperti, LMHC, BCETS
Psychotherapist, Educator, Consultant
Every challenge makes us stronger in character!
By: Amy E
(this is not the playground we experienced this story at.)
Recently, I took the Tiny One to a playground on the Cape. There were lots of kids playing and a little baseball game going on with parents watching and cheering on their kids! It was so beautiful out! The playground we went to had a big playground for older more advanced kids as well as a smaller, more toddler
friendly playground. As I saw down on the bench near the smaller playground, I watched as my Tiny Man walked on over to this super cool structure. I noticed a few bigger boys on the smaller playground and watched one of them studying my son very intently as he ambled on over. As a former elementary school teacher, I can read kids pretty well and my heart sank in my chest because I could tell by this other child’s body language
what was about to happen and I knew that I would have to let it just play out in front of me.
This older boy, let’s call him: Alan (definitely not this child’s name but for the sake of making this easier to read we will give him a name). Alan was standing at the top of the stairs of the play structure, his arms were on his hips, and his eyes narrowed at the approaching Tiny One. As my fearless little man began to climb up, Alan’s eyes narrowed even more. When the Tiny One had reached the top he was blocked by Alan.
My heart sank even lower in my chest, but I still sat perfectly still and calm. The Tiny One told Alan, “Please move, I’d like to play.” Alan vehemently shook his said and screamed: “NO!!!!”. I looked around, where was this boy’s mother????? Nowhere to be found at this point! The Tiny One asked again, ever my polite and friendly little boy: “Please I want to play too!” Alan shook his head again and shoved the Tiny One. At this point both Alan and my son looked at me and I called on over: “We don’t use our hands on others; everyone should be allowed to play.” Seriously this was one of the hardest things I have had to do thus far as a parent. But a valuable lesson was going to be taught.
At this point the Tiny one ambled back on over to me and Alan took off for the other structure with his friends but kept staring at us. The Tiny One was confused and asked: “Mama, that boy not nice, why not nice to me?” My heart shattered into a million pieces as I realized this was going to be just the beginning of the long road of life which has more mountain high successes and praises and valley deep rejections. I explained to him simply that sometimes other kids don’t want to play with us, but I was so proud of him for standing up for himself and still offering to be friends with this boy.
Over the next hour, I watched as my loving and forgiving child would play and then see Alan and would try to become friends with him and his buddies. But Alan kept rejecting him, yelling at him, trying to push him, etc. It was so hard to watch my son learn this lesson, but it is a fact of life.
Over that hour of playing I studied all the kids playing on the playground and “eavesdropped” on all the conversations taking place. I warn you, what I heard was both shocking and heart breaking. Every single little group of friends, boys and girls alike had little groups they were playing with and EVERY SINGLE
GROUP was being “mean” or bullying a child. I watched as a gaggle of boys ran around ostracizing a little boy who was playing with sand saying: “he isn’t cool because he likes to play with sand.” (WHAT?!?!I I must be really uncool then) watched another little group running around talking “smack” about another child saying how bad she was at sports and she was “ugly”. Kids were getting into fist fights, finally a coach walked past and told them to knock it off. I really wish I could have recorded all this to share with you Moms, because it truly was a shocking eye opener for me. I just could not believe the amount of meanness and ostracizing that was taking place on a playground filled with children under 10!!!!
What has happened to our children?!?!!?!? Is this what is taking place on the playgrounds across America right now? Why are our children so angry, vengeful and hateful? When did it become like this? I know that it
takes places sometimes, but the bullying was rampant and it has increased since my years as a teacher! What have we done to our children to make them this way? The honest answer moms…. We have failed as parents and caretakers for our little ones. Children learn behavior from home, from other people around them and from one another. If these children are angry and mean, it is because they see angry and mean behavior at home. This is UNACCEPTABLE! Don’t get me wrong, I know heartache is going to take place.
I know my Tiny One as he grows will have his share of rejection from others, IT IS A PART OF LIFE! However what I witnessed was extreme and concerning! I have heard from my friends who now have children in the elementary schools who say they see the same things. It breaks my heart. We all want to protect our children and shield them from the negative parts of our world. But we do have to let them experience the good with the bad.
Right before we left the playground, we were swinging. I watched little Alan, run up to his mother who had finally appeared and finally it all clicked for me. I watched as this mother, who had 4 boys showered the oldest with praise and attention and ignored Alan even as Alan got picked on by his brother and friends. I watched as other kids threw rocks at Alan and my heart began to break for this little misunderstood boy who just wanted and needed more attention. Alan picked up a rock like one of his other brothers and threw it at the Tiny One. I saw the oldest brother looking at me, waiting for my reaction. As the Tiny One picked up a rock to return fire, I calmly told my child, “No we don’t do that, rocks are not for hitting people with, we play with them but we do not hurt others.” The older brother walked over to Alan and told him the same thing. Modeling appropriate behavior works! At this point Alan came over and helped my son collect rocks.
When it was time for him to leave with his mother, she seemed to have little patience for him wanting to bring home his new rock treasures, Alan was very disappointed but stuck them in his bag anyway.
On the way home, my son and I talked about the whole situation. We talked about how the boy eventually became our “friend” because we kept reaching out and being nice to him. That in life there would be people who would not want to be his friend, but that he should always, ALWAYS respond with kindness to others.
I’m not sure if the lesson sank in for him, but the Tiny One was ecstatic that eventually the boy played with him!
In my heart, I know there will be countless more times when my son will be rejected and it makes me so sad. But I was also bursting with pride at how well he had handled the situation and how he responded with kindness each time. I leave you with a final thought…..
As parents we have a responsibility to instill values into our children that will enable them to be successful adults. These adults are going to be taking care of us one day and I don’t know about you, but I want those adults to be compassionate, caring, kind and passionate; but most of all I want them to be STRONG IN CHARACTER. I want adults who will be in charge of raising the next generation to improve on us and raise happy children. So please, model the behavior that you want to see our future society have, I shudder to think that if we don’t, how they will treat us all when we are older. Don’t let your children see you be vengeful, hateful or unkind. They are impressionable. We only get a short time with them when they are innocent, let them remain so for as long as possible and maybe the future might just be a better place.
Mamas, it is the time of big changes for my family that I wrote about in one of my first posts. We are getting ready to move, we are trying to figure out where we are moving to, and it is a lot harder than I thought it was going to be to find the right spot.
Preschool graduation is fast approaching, kindergarten orientation has been attended. My very sensitive, very fiery, eldest daughter is having a tough time with so many changes and with integrating all the
sensations out in the big world into her tiny body. My youngest is about to turn 3.
These are all manageable issues, but sometimes it feels like a tidal wave of emotions and responsibilities. But in the midst of all this, I am appreciating just how lucky we are to make a life here on Cape Cod. Cape Cod Mommies (and daddies and grandparents), this is our kid’s childhood and it is glorious:
In the past two weeks, spring has started to appear after a very long winter. And it reminds us all why we are here. Our kids go to the beach in their tutus. They know the sound of the waves on the ocean side and the feeling of the cold, calm April water of the bay side. They bring home sand in their pockets and dig holes in the beach with the dog. Handstands are attempted in spite of the whipping wind and they swear that ocean breezes help them run faster. It can be a struggle to make a life here, but for those of us that do it, we know it is well worth it. So huzzah to spring, sunshine, spinning at the shore, and raising kids by the sea!
By: Coach Pam Wills
Since my April “Be Your Self” theme has ended, I decided to share my updated playlist of fave inspirational, motivational, get-up-and-go tunes (in no particular order). I’ve linked the song titles to corresponding YouTube videos (not all of them are official music videos by the artists, but the tunes are there and sometimes the lyrics are, too). Lyrics are worth looking up for great inspirational quotes, just Google them.
1) Reach, Gloria Estefan
Motivational fodder for pushing beyond the limits, this was an official theme song for the 2008 Summer Olympics
2) Try to Fly, Eva
Great tune from a super talented songwriter and great friend of mine who creates her magic in Germany
3) Polka Dots, Kami Lyle
I am so lucky to count as friends not one but TWO super talented singer/songwriters! Kami spins her magic right here on Cape Cod
4) Free and Right to Be Wrong, Joss Stone
This hippie chick knows the real deal and how to express it with her crazy hot soul music
5) Brave, Jennifer Lopez
I don’t think this song is well known but it really hits the spot
6) Respect and Think, Aretha Franklin
7) Free Xone and What Have You Done for Me Lately, Janet Jackson
Love the dancing in the “Free Xone” video… “Love your Self” is a great line!… And let’s not forget the quintessential, classic Janet song
8) Just Fine, Mary J. Blige
THE way to rock the joy of being YOU, this song is my newest anthem!!!
9) Express Yourself, Madonna
“Don’t go for second best, baby”… Words to live by
10) Strength, Courage & Wisdom, India.Arie
Just the tip of the iceberg from this singer and her incredibly deep soul
11) King of Anything, Sara Bareilles
“Who cares if you disagree? You are NOT me!”… This song is everyone’s theme song who decides to stop putting up
12) Born This Way, Lady Gaga
Cannot make a list like this without this tune!
13) I’m A Survivor, Destiny’s Child
Beyonce’s antidote to hater poison
14) Shine, Estelle
All about being her Self, this woman knows exactly who she is
15) Brand New Day, Sting
Wait for Stevie Wonder to come and play his harmonica around minute three
16) Hope, Shaggy
“Never give up”… Super cool and inspiring tune by the man him Self
17) The Climb, Miley Cyrus
I know, I know, what am I doing putting a kids’ song on this list??… Just listen, it’s really a great tune about
18) When You Believe, performed by the late Whitney Houston and Maria Carey (from Disney’s The Prince of Egypt)
Inspirational at its best, sung by two powerful divas
19) Girl On Fire, Alicia Keys ft. Nicki Minaj
Caution, super hot video! Lots of fun, too
20) Fighter, Soar and Beautiful, Christina Aguilera
Fabulous tunes, all of them!
Thanks for listening with me! I hope this list:
1) made you smile
2) made you DANCE!!!
3) made you want to forward this to a friend. Why keep a good thing to your Self??
Have a great week!
Cape Cod Moms