Summertime spells fun in the sun, family vacations, and of course, bar-b-que, because what's summer without at least one bar-b-que?! Although there are a lot of things to look forward to during the summer, like the 4th of July, highly anticipated movie releases and pool days. Most children, mine included, look forward to no school and having the opportunity to stay up a tad bit later than their normal bedtime.
I'm all for fun and making lasting memories but I also have the philosophy that learning never stops, especially for my school-aged children. Some of the best memories can be made while learning especially if the atmosphere is engaging and interactive. When school ends for the summer I ensure I have a good blend of summer activities mixed with a level of learning and focus on preparedness for the next school year. You are allowing a huge disservice to your children if you don't require that they have any form of educational stimulation just because school is in recess and it's summer break. Learning truly does begin at home and as your child's first teacher, summer doesn't mean education should stop.
Learning and fun definitely go together. Some ways to successfully prepare your child for the next school year by blending the two are:
No matter your destination, the thought of traveling with young children can be overwhelming, and the much-anticipated trip can quickly turn into an anxiety attack waiting to happen if you think about all the things that can or will go wrong if you're being honest. Whether by plane, car, bus, or train, the key to traveling with children is trying to anticipate the needs and wants of your children before your journey. Older children are usually much more self-sufficient and can entertain themselves with handheld gaming devices, smartphones/ tablets or chapter reading. I'm talking children about 7 and under who might have a hard time being forced to sit still for extended periods of time.
When I was younger, I was a great big ball of energy and my mother regularly would tell me to go play in the yard to " burn energy". I enjoyed being able to run free and explore. Even if your children aren't as energetic, it is so tough for younger children to be restricted or confined to one area; so traveling and being confined to a small area can be tough for them and you.
I've done my fair share of travel with little ones, being a mother of three, all aged 6 and under by the way so I I think I have hassle-free travel down to a tee.
Here are some tips for hassle-free load traveling with children:
If you've ever had the pleasure of nursing a child or feeding your little one breastmilk through a bottle, then you know first hand, the liquid gold, as it's been referred to, stains! When I stay stain, I don't mean, I didn't have time to clean the spilled milk so it dried stain. I mean, I wiped my couch with soap and water and the milk is still there stain. Yep, the hard to get rid of type of stain.
With 3 children that I have nursed and one that I am still nursing (whoo hoo) I have had my share of " liquid gold" splashes throughout the house. The floor, the comforter, the sofa, every type of surface you can think of.
However nutritious and beneficial breastmilk is, I didn't want to see it spattered on surfaces throughout the house. It's daunting enough when one drop goes to waste. If you have ever tried to pump, nurse, or build a supply, or lived with anyone who has, you know exactly what I mean, Ha!
When different types of cleaners failed to remove the white blemishes throughout my home from dried breastmilk, in steps white vinegar to the recuse. Yep, you've read that correctly, Vinegar. You probably remember your grandmother using vinegar for several reasons maybe mainly as a household cleaning solution, I surely do. When I remembered vinegar as an option, I knew that I found what I'd been needing. Because I'm that type of friend, I'll share my secret ingredient with you.
I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to breastfeed all three of my children. I am currently still nursing and pumping for my youngest child who is 11 months. Previously, for my oldest two children, I exclusively nursed and pumped for 8 months for each of them, until my milk production halted and I couldn’t sustain the amount they needed for child care as I was a working mother during both occasions.
This time around I have the pleasure of being a stay at home mother for the majority of my little one’s 11 months, which has been a difference maker in addition to some other tips that have allowed me to have an abundant milk supply.
There are a plethora of products on the market geared towards helping lactating mothers with their supply and having nursed three children I can say I’ve tried my fair share. Do any of them really work well and can prove to be a noticeable difference maker...: that is up for debate. I can’t personally swear by any. I’ve tried some of the most popular like the Mother’s milk tea and various lactation bars, and my milk production didn’t jump leaps and bounds. If you are intrested in knowing which ones I've tried, send me a message and I'll certainly share.
What has worked however is frequency of pump/nurse sessions and a well balanced diet, which lead to an abundance of milk. So much so I even had to buy a deep freezer to store all the milk because it began to take over the freezer space, my husband started to tease, that the rest of the family wanted to eat and we needed more in the freezer than frozen breast milk.
I hope you have a note pad handy; because here are some tips to try that allowed me to increased my milk production which meant more milk to store.
One of my greatest joys in life is being with my family. They show me so much love, it's an honor and privilege to be a mother and a wife. I'm grateful to be a sister, daughter, and friend. This is a space inspired by the journey and the things I've learned over the years....it hasn't been that long so bear with me. Proverbs 17:6 " Children's children are the crown of old men: and the glory of children are their fathers."