kids

How to Help Your Child Sleep Better

While it is always important to allow playtime for your child, it is even more crucial you consider how many hours they sleep in a day to enhance physical and mental well-being. Bedtime can be really troubling when your child does not want to abide by the bedtime routine. If a child has problems sleeping, it also affects the care giver's sleeping patterns, which can lead into a difficult cycle of sleepless nights that can prove to be hard to break. 

So how do you help your child get the sleep that you both deserve? 

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Create A Bedtime Routine

If your child is either a toddler, preschooler, or an infant, creating a consistent bedtime routine will help you put them to sleep. A good bedtime routine promotes self-sufficiency that enables a child to go back to sleep at night. This could include sending them to bed at the same time every night, hopping into their pajamas, and reading a book together to tire the eyes. 

Help your child become an independent sleeper by developing routines that make them feel safe sleeping on their own. If you create activities such as bedtime stories, you set a perfect sleeping atmosphere, and your child relaxes and automatically become sleepy.

Reduce Stressful Activities Before Bedtime

Participating in engaging and stressful activities before bedtime can trigger the release of hormone cortisol that plays a role in sleep. Higher levels of cortisol means higher levels of energy. Always keep the environment quiet and tranquil to minimize the release of this stress hormone and help them get to sleep quicker and easier. 

Create an Individualized Bedtime Schedule

It’s important to understand the sleeping patterns of your child for you to create an effective sleep and bed time schedule for them, and to do so,  you must realize that children need different hours of sleep according to age. Although not all kids need or want the same amount of sleep, the usual rule of thumb is to make sure that they sleep between nine and eleven hours each night. An individualized bedtime routine will guarantee that your child wakes up refreshed despite the difference in sleep and wake-up times.

Power Down Electronic Devices A Few Hour Before Bedtime

Screen light from devices such as television can increase brain activity and inhibit the production of sleep-time hormones. High levels of melatonin and serotonin means that your child is ready to sleep. Ensure that your child participates in physical activities to drain their energy instead of watching children programs on devices. You can improve your child sleeping patterns by ensuring that the bedroom is a screen-free zone.

Create A Sleep-Inducing Environment

Although toys can provide protection and reassurance from bedtime fears, do not stuff the bed to make it easier for the child to sleep. Make the bedroom more comfortable by adding cozy bed sheets and regulating the room temperatures to their preferred sleeping environment.  

Make sure that your child gets enough sleep to help them fight off illness and promote physical well-being. If you notice that your kids have trouble getting to sleep, or even detect irregular sleeping patterns, talk to their pediatrician for professional help.

NannyPod provides long term nanny matches and short term occasional date-night babysitters and infant care on demand, at an affordable price. Our service is convenient, safe and secure for families and our staff. Parents can request childcare instantly by using the NannyPod app. Get started with NannyPod today and find babysitters or nannies for your childcare needs!

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6 Creative Ways to Beat the Heat this Summer

Hot summer days are upon us! Whether you are loving the sunny summer weather or not, there will be some days where you just need to beat the heat. We’ve put together a few creative ideas for indoor enjoyment that the whole family can enjoy during those inevitable heatwaves.

Top Life Hacks for Managing a Chaotic Morning Routine

Do you remember the last time you woke up energized and ready to go, the kids got dressed and ate breakfast in a timely manner, and everyone shuffled into the car peacefully? Yeah, me neither…

Mornings with kids have become notoriously chaotic. Some days getting everyone dressed, fed and out the door can feel as challenging as climbing a mountain. But we believe it doesn’t have to be this way! Let’s talk about a few simple ways you can take back control of your morning routine.

7 Playful Activities that Encourage STEM Learning

STEM Learning (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) is incredibly important for young minds and helps develop, early on, a variety of problem-solving skills and methods of strategic thinking. There are so many activities that spark this type of STEM learning that are also fun for kids, thus building a positive foundation for their education as they continue to grow.

So, let’s get creative, put on our thinking caps, and maybe get a little messy!

Creative (and Realistic) Ways to Get a Workout In While Spending Time with Your Kids

I’ve heard it said that out of (1) social life, (2) family time, and (3) exercise, you can only really have two. But, I don’t believe that and neither should you! While yes, having kids can feel all-consuming at times, you don’t have to let your exercise fall in the priority list. Having a consistent and healthy exercise routine is critical, not just for your physical well being, but for your emotional well being and confidence.

Top Stress-Busting Ideas for Parents

Whichever way you shake it, we live in a “go-go-go” society. Oftentimes we glorify how busy and productive we are, and feel guilty if we spend too much time relaxing. Raising kids is difficult enough on its own, let alone balancing a job, marriage, and some semblance of a social life.

6 Musical Activities for Kids (that Spark Developmental Learning)

Exposing children to music is beneficial in many ways, beyond just having fun or learning an instrument. Musical learning covers a variety of skill sets, from critical thinking to hand-eye coordination. Additionally, it encourages creativity, unique personal expression, and collaborative teamwork!

Top Tips for Staying in Control Without Raising Your Voice

We know that sometimes it feels like you’re about 3 seconds away from losing your mind. You’re running late, someone is crying, there is a pile of toys that needs to been picked up. It’s easy to let things boil over until your patience is maxed out!

Top Kids Christmas Gifts by Age for 2017

It can be tough keeping up with what kids are interested in playing with from year to year - especially in the younger years from age 3-7 when they change so drastically from one year to the next! Here are a few gift ideas for Christmas 2017 to give you a little head start on the season. 

1. Age 3

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  • LeapFrog Scoop & Learn Ice Cream Cart
    Age range (2-5 years)
    Price $39.99
    A whimsical ice cream cart that is fun for "make believe" role-play, as well as learning flavors, colors, and numbers.

  • The "Land of Nod's" Wild Animal Sleeping Bags
    Age Range (3+)
    Price $99
    These are the sweetest little sleeping bags that your 3-year-old can use and grow into for several years. You can choose from a zebra, fox, dinosaur, penguin, or puppy. Perfect for overnights at the grandparents, or camping out in the living room.

  • Kardboard Kingdom
    Age Range (3+)
    Price $40
    From Box Creations, the Kardboard Kingdom is an easy to assemble playhouse made of cardboard. Complete with tunnels, a courtyard, and interior play space, this is the perfect gift for a wild imagination.


2. Age 4

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  • Skip Hop Zoo Pack
    Age Range (3+)
    Price $20
    These little backpacks are not only totally adorable, but are a great way to allow your kids to express their individuality. There are dozens of different ones to choose from, and will make packing up for school and car trips a little bit more fun.

  • Eco Dough
    Age Range (4+)
    Price $20
    We all love a good playdough session, and Eco Dough brings all of the fun with less of the chemicals. Made from natural ingredients, which are better for the environment, and better for the kids to be handling!

  • Fingerlings Interactive Baby Monkey
    Age Range (3+)
    Price $17.99 or $90 for all six
    These little monkeys help teach young kids how to care for a pet and be a good friend. They are interactive, and respond to being rocked to sleep, hung upside down, talked to, and pet! Good for little animal lovers.


3. Age 5

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  • Temporary Animal Hand Tattoos
    Price $12
    Including a variety of different animals and monsters, these hand tattoos are a fun twist on the traditional temporary tattoo. Perfect for a sleepover or kid's party. Easy to apply and non-toxic.

  • Build-A-Bear Stuffing Station
    Age Range (4+)
    Price $30
    Bring the fun of Build-A-Bear Workshop home! The kit includes materials for 2 "furry friends" with accessories, t-shirts, birth certificates, and easy instructions.

  • FurReal Friends
    Age Range (4+)
    Price $30-$130
    FurReal pets are one of the biggest trends in kid's toys in 2017! The pets are interactive, and have different sounds as well as sound-motion combinations. These toys are perfect for teaching children how to care for and take care of a pet.


4. Age 6

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  • Hatchimals
    Age Range (3+)
    Price $3-$30
    Hatchimals are "collEGGtible" little critters that hatch from an egg! So it is a fun surprise finding out which hatchimal you get each time. The hatchimal "world" has a lot of additional activities, including coloring book downloads, activity books, and videos and games online.

  • Kiwi Crate
    Age Range (5-8)
    Price - Monthly box subscription ($19 a month, or cheaper if you pay for 3, 6, 12 months)
    We've heard of subscription boxes for adults (Stitch Fix, Birchbox, Le Tote, etc.) but this is a uniquely crafted box for kids! The Kiwi Crate is for ages 5-8 and encourages STEAM (Science, Engineering, Art, Math) learning, creativity, and exploration. Each box comes with a "Maker Project," Creative Learning Materials, an "explore!" Magazine, and Online DIY Ideas.

  • Root Vue Farm
    Age Range (4+)
    Price $40
    This visual garden, let's your little gardner plant root vegetables and watch them grow. Fun and educational, they'll learn how to plant, water, and pick the vegetables!


5. Age 7

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  • VTech Kidizoom Action Cam
    Age Range (4-9)
    Price $40
    Kids love taking photos - we know this from our maxed out storage on our iPhones! - and this vtech camera is made for kids, allowing them to take videos and photos and get creative. It comes with a USB cord, so you can upload and share with family and friends.

  • Rory's Story Cubes
    Age Range 6+
    Price $12-25
    This game will bring out your kids' wildest imagination and creativity - and it's fun for adults too, so it's the perfect game to play during family night. You roll the rice, which have different icons on them, and create imaginative stories based on the characters and things you roll.

  • Selfie Mic Music Set
    Age Range (7+)
    Price $20
    We're in the age of "Selfie's" and we might as well embrace it! This app/music set combo allows the kids to connect a microphone and selfie stick to a phone, and record themselves singing and rocking out! Perfect for the musically-inclined to explore their talents and break out of their shell.

Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for more great tips, hints, and quick reads on all things parenting in Charleston SC!


 
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NannyPod provides babysitters, nannies, and night nurse infant care on demand, at an affordable price. Our service is convenient, safe and secure for families and our staff. Parents can request childcare instantly online or by using the MindBody Connect app. Get started with NannyPod today and find babysitters or nannies for your childcare needs!

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