Baby Sleep Tips For The Holiday Season

By Shan Roth

Jammy Time Sleep Solutions

As I drive down the street, I see Christmas trees shining through frosty windows and twinkling lights are popping up on houses throughout my neighbourhood. The Christmas season is almost upon us.

And I am sure by this point you have received a call from your mother-in-law asking (or maybe telling!)you the plans for Christmas.

You fondly remember going to your parents and even your in-laws for Christmas because someone did the cooking for you, you could sleep in and just take in all the season had to offer.  After all, you were on Christmas holidays!

But the days of staying up into the wee hours of the morning, sipping rum and egg nog by the fire and crashing wherever there was room have long passed.

You have a baby now.  Christmas is such an exciting and magical time with children.   And so many cherished memories will be made during the season.

But things just got a little bit more complicated!  Suddenly spending 5 days at the in-laws doesn’t sound quite as appealing with a baby in tow.

Are you worried about unsolicited advice from Grandma?

What if your baby cries and keeps everyone up all night?

Where will everyone sleep?

How do I manage to get my baby to bed on time?

All these questions are dancing around in your head!

With a little preparation and planning,  your little one can sleep well during the holiday season.

  • Respect your child’s sleep needs and do not over-schedule.Plan for some down time where your child can have naps that are not on the go.  It is tempting to see as any people as possible, but it will just leave everyone miserable at the end of the day.  You won’t have a good visit with Great Aunt Edna if your baby is crying the whole time or your toddler is having a melt down.
  • An occasional car nap or slightly later bedtime is okay.Most children can tolerate this without too much disruption to their overall sleep patterns. However, consecutive days of naps on the go and later bedtimes will wreak havoc on their sleep.  You still want to aim for no more than 20% of naps out and about.
  • Your child may test the boundaries and protest more in their new sleep environment until they get used to it. If that happens, you might start to get very nervous because your baby, who has been happily chatting herself to sleep for weeks, is now crying again, and your mother-in-law is standing outside the door repeatedly asking you if you’re sure the baby is okay.  You may start to give into this pressure and bend your expectations for your baby’s sleep.
  • Deal with it the same way you would at home by going in and out of the room every 10 minutes and provide some quick reassurance.  Be very consistent for the first few days and nights and your child will be used to their new sleep space and go back to sleeping well, which will make for an enjoyable Christmas for everyone.
  • Bring your child’s blankie or stuffie, sleep sack and white noise. Set up a sleep space that is dark and separate from you.Hallways, bathrooms and closets can work well to set up baby’s temporary room.  There is a great product out there called the SnoozeShade that fits over most playpens. It is a breathable, blackout cover that works great for blocking out light and providing some separation from your baby if you happen to be sharing a room.
  • As tempting as it might be to bed share for a few nights, it is not a good option. Often your child will decide this is his new preferred location to sleep and you may find yourself back to square one when you return home.
  • If you have to take a plane ride, it is best to plan ahead and do whatever you need to do to keep your child comfortable and occupied for the journey. He may have a nap in your arms and that is okay.
  • If you are doing a driving trip, planning to drive during nap time works well. It is just best to ensure that all naps are not happening in the car. And stop and take breaks to eat and stretch!  Your child needs this too!

I wish you a season of precious memories, hearts full of love and silent nights!

Shan – Jammy Time Sleep Solutions 

Win the 5 Days to a Better Night’s Sleep on-line course from Jammy Time Sleep Solutions! This package includes instant and lifetime access to the on-line course 5 Days to a Better Night’s Sleep, one 20 minute support call with Shan Roth – paediatric sleep expert and access to a private Facebook support group. Please enter here to win http://gojammytime.com/mommyconnections

This contest closes on Nov 27th at 11:59pm. If you are struggling with sleep and can’t wait for the draw date check out our 5 Days to a Better Night Sleep http://gojammytime.com/5dayscourse and enter code iamtired to get $20 off the course. Cheers to better sleep!

P.S: If you purchase the course and happen to be the lucky winner, I will refund you your money!!!

Job Posting: Program Manager & Social Media Manager

We are looking for some amazing people to add to our dream team! Please take a look at the following job opportunities and see if you think you’d be a fit with our organization! We are all about community and connection so if this is one of your core values, think about sending in an application! There are two postings, we will require the following for each position:

  1. Please send a cover letter and resume to our director Katherine at katherinemcyyc@gmail.com. In the cover letter, let us know WHY you are applying, WHY you think you’ll be a great addition to our dream team and as well if you have taken a program with us before.
  2. Deadline for application for both of these jobs is November 18th. Please do NOT contact us, we will contact you if you are chosen for an interview.
  3. In person interviews will be held during the last two weeks of November, with the two successful candidates chosen and beginning in early December. Training done during December (prior to the holidays) with both starting in January after the holidays.
Program Manager – Mommy Connections Calgary
* The successful candidate is someone who is organized and efficient, who has an administration background and is capable of working with and managing a team. This person will be working from home, so highly motivated, and is able to work during daytime hours primarily. Here are the details of the position:
1. Program Planning (planning 8-12 programs every session – 6 sessions a year)
2. Facilitator Documents & Agendas
3. Business Development (2-4 new businesses per month)
4. Responding to emails regarding programs (inquiries)
5. Rebooking presenters if they cancel last minute
6. Manage facilitator booking, contracts and invoice checking
7. Managing day to day of programs – any issues, you are the first point of contact
8. Weekly email to Director, Administrator and social media manager of what is coming up in the week and making sure all tasks are being attended to (keeping the team organized and efficient)
9. Managing workshops and events – booking facility space and presenter – following up with presenter, etc.
10. Any other duties as discussed and agreed upon.
Approximate Hours a Week: 15 hours (2 – 4 hours a day) * These hours will be daytime, but some may be in the evening. You will be working primarily from home with the occasional time you are required to attend programs, events and or workshops.
Compensation: To be discussed based on experience.
***
Social Media Manager:
The successful candidate is someone who loves social media, helping women make connections and understands the needs and wants of pre and post natal Moms! There are no ‘set’ hours of day, but there is a minimum requirement of posts and engagement on a regular basis required. You do not work at an office, you will be working at home, so you must be highly motivated. Here are the details:
1. Create content on Facebook and Instagram on a weekly basis
2. At minimum 2 – 3 posts per day on facebook and instagram
3. Creating Facebook events and doing instagram live stories (sometimes on location)
4. Responding to people on facebook and instagram (answering questions and emails)
*** 5. Option of doing ‘live’ hits at classes
6. Posting photos taken by facilitators, from events and workshops
7. Posting positive feedback as well from participants
8. Any other social media duties as discussed and agreed upon.
Approximate Hours a week: 3-5 hours a week * These hours can be anytime of the day and you will be working from home, with the occasional time you are required to attend programs, events and or workshops.

Compensation: To be discussed based on experience.

 

Tame Your Little Devil – Life Saving Tips for Managing Tantrums

Originally posted by Bright Path Kids – the original article can be found here. 

Tantrums are tough. In the grocery store line up. At bedtime. When it is time to leave the house. Tantrums are tough. When times are tough, it can be difficult to manage our emotions and be calm. Here are some tips to help manage tantrums and try to keep your cool at the same time.

It helps to understand that when a child has a tantrum, they are communicating something to us. Often it is that they are not equipped to deal with the situation. They cannot handle the strong emotions they are experiencing, such as frustration, disappointment, or anger. Here are steps to help you help your child in these moments:

1. Validate the emotion

It is important to accept and validate your child’s feelings, even if you think they should not feel that way. By labeling the emotion, you help your child understand their feelings and then you can work toward how to handle them in a positive way. Empathy reduces levels of arousal.

  • “I can see you are very angry. Maybe I can help you with that.”
  • “You are frustrated that we have to go when you are playing your favorite game. I understand that it is hard.”
  • Try to get below your child’s eye level and use a very soft voice/whisper.

2. Set limits and be consistent

By showing empathy, you are not telling the child that their behaviour is OK. You are telling them that you understand their emotion.

Ask questions to help them problem solve (if they are calm enough to be able to engage with you) – “What is a good thing to do when we feel upset?” “It is OK to be mad, but it is not OK to hurt anyone. What else can we do when we are mad?”

  • “It is OK to be mad, but it is not OK to be mean.”
  • “Calm first, talk second. Do you need help to calm down or can you do that on your own?”
  • “Do you need a break?” “…to try again?” “…help?”
  • “I’m curious about what happened here…”
  • Try helping the child engage in actions to help calm – an action like jumping, counting backwards, deep breaths – and then prompt them to ask themselves “What do I need?”

3. Calming options

If the child is too upset to engage in any other options or in problem solving, they need time to calm down. Do not leave your child alone to do this unless they want that. Use TIME-IN instead of TIME-OUT.

  • It is not a punishment. You are teaching your child the skills they need to be able to self-regulate and calm.
  • You may give them a choice of where they want to calm down.
  • If they need help to settle, ask “Do you need some help?”
  • Set up a calming box containing items that the child finds relaxing – books, silly putty, stress ball, pinwheel (to blow for deep breaths), etc. Teach your child how to use them during calm times, and then support them to use them when they are upset.

To try to prevent tantrums (because who doesn’t want that!), try the following:

  • Tell your child the expectations before the situation arises. For example, “We are going grocery shopping and I will not be buying you anything from the store. You can have a treat when we get home.”
  • Provide as much structure and routine as possible. Let children know when there will be changes to the schedule.
  • Give your child two choices when possible.
  • Avoid power struggles – if you need to, tell your child, “I know you don’t like my answer, but I am not going to argue with you about it” and walk away and DO NOT ENGAGE. You can offer them options to engage in instead, but that is it.
  • Teach skills – help your child develop skills they may be lacking which can cause tantrums – social skills, frustration tolerance, calming skills, deep breathing, give and take, sharing, clean anger versus dirty anger.

The most important thing to remember when helping your child through a tantrum……TAKE A DEEP BREATH. It will get better.😊

Resources:

Tina Payne Bryson and Daniel Siegel. No Drama Discipline.

Tina Payne Bryson and Daniel Siegel. The Yes Brain.

Tina Payne Bryson and Daniel Siegel. The Whole Brain Child.

www.copingskillsforkids.com

www.lemonlimeadventures.com

www.parents.com

www.positiveparenting.com

www.triplep-parenting.ca – There are Triple P Parenting Programs offered throughout Canada if you are interested in learning further strategies for parenting.

The Greener Cleaners: Self Care Experience

It is no secret, that my favourite day of the week is every second Friday when The Greener Cleaners visit my house. With two little ones under the age of 6, life is busy. But there’s nothing like that feeling of a clean home! Therefore, I have always said that hiring a cleaner was the best thing I’ve ever done for SELF CARE!

Last week, we had a chance to connect with the owners of The Greener Cleaners, which are a family run business. We are huge supporters of local community based businesses, so we wanted to share with you more about them in case you’re looking for a reliable cleaning service too!

* Tell us about your family business:

We have been running our Family business for 4 years. We started as a Mother Daughter duo and it has grown from there to an entire team of wonderful people.

* What makes you different from other cleaning companies in the city?

We are different from other cleaning companies because we care for each individual home as our own.

* What is different from your products you use to clean? (natural products)

All of our cleaning products are made by the owners. They are all natural and contain no chemical ingredients.

* Do you have different people per week or is it the same crew?

We have a variety of staff that all have a passion for cleaning. We can accommodate requests to have the same crew come to your house every time, but we also like to give them a chance to work with others so we rearrange the crews on a regular basis.

* Would you offer a discount to first time customers that call you from our Mommy Connections community?

Absolutely! If you are interested in trying The Greener Cleaners, call us and we’ll give you a discount for a first time clean!

Calgary Baby/Tot Show Gift Basket Winner

Thank you to everyone who joined us this past weekend at the Calgary Baby & Tot Show! We met hundreds of families and had a blast doing it! All we can say is there’s lots of babies coming this December – January and we can’t wait to meet them all!

The lucky winner of our baby gift basket is:

Ashley Z.

Thank you again to everyone who came over, talked to us, did some crafts and or watched our presentation. It was lovely to meet and connect with all of you. We hope to welcome you to a program, workshop or event sometime soon!

Hot Mama Fitness: Workout & Bring Baby!

Hot Mama Fit – Moms work out while their kids play! We offer group fitness classes for moms who want a quick, effective and fun work. We welcome all moms, whether you are newly postpartum and looking to get back into fitness or an experienced exerciser!

Hot Mama isn’t just about fitness; it’s about empowering women, building community and embracing family fitness. Mamas often take care of everyone else before themselves. Hot Mama provides a safe, supportive space where they can work out while not worrying about childcare. It’s a bonus that the kids witness firsthand what an amazing, strong role model their mama can be!

Each Hot Mama location offers a variety of classes, from low impact, strength-based workouts to high intensity Cardio Blasts. Don’t worry… Every class can be modified to your current fitness level.

We also offer Body Smarts, our 12 week nutrition program designed by a Registered Dietician and PhD in Exercise Physiology (next session starting this week and again in January 2019), Bootylicious Run Group, our super popular 12 week program designed for the beginner to intermediate runner (next session starting Spring 2019) and Screw The Scale, our 8 week fitness education and self-love program.

There are currently 3 locations in Calgary – Calgary SE, Calgary NE- Marlborough and Calgary West Sarcee. Your first week is always FREE to try! Moms who are 8-24 weeks postpartum get four weeks of classes for FREE (2/week) as part of our Postpartum Initiative. Visit http://hotmamafit.com/ to find the location nearest you and email us to get started!

Hot Mama Health & Fitness is giving away a 4 class pass (valued at $59.97) to use at any one of our three Calgary locations – SE, West or NE. The 4 class pass will be valid for 1 month from first use. Enter HERE for your chance to win! 

Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of Calgary.

Fall 2018 Baby Tot Show Ticket Winners

THE CALGARY BABY & TOT SHOW
FOR BUMP, BABY & BEYOND!
September 29th & 30th, 2018
BMO Centre, Stampede Park

A premier parenting event designed to put everything you need under one roof. Featuring local and national exhibitors showcasing the latest in apparel, services, products and toys to assist parents and caregivers every step of the way. Join industry experts in the seminar theatre, with educational presentations discussing everything from pregnancy to preschool! Interactive play areas, arts and crafts and ongoing entertainment for the whole family!

Mommy Connections Calgary will be hosting the Craft Booth as well as doing an interactive talk on building your community and getting you connected to other Moms in the city!

THE WINNERS:

Week 1 Giveaway: This week’s winners are Elaine B., Amanda M., Rebecca O., Chantelle L., Emily K.

Week 2 Giveaway: This week’s winners are Anna C., Christine S., Adriana A., Anita, Jessie

Week 3 Giveaway: This week’s winners are Nicole L., Chelsey M., Christine M., Rachel E., Lindsey D.

    10 Tips To Fall Into Self-Care

    Written By Lori Pohl of Lori Pohl Massage & Wellness

    Fall is in the air, the kids are back to school and routines are being re-established. I don’t even have kids old enough to be in school and I love how life just seems to go back to “normal” in September. Things just seems more routine, structured, less chaotic and I have more time for ME. Anyone else?

    This is always such a great time to re-establish self care practices that seem to get forgotten during the summer. Everyone is so busy going here and there, travelling, camping and enjoying the sun that normal everyday things like regular self-care get forgotten about.

    But what is self care really? When someone asks what you do for self-care, how do you respond?

    Most people would give an answer like go for a walk, take a bath, read a book, watch a funny movie, get your nails did, or get a massage!

    And those are all really great things to do – especially that last one!

    But I am biased being a Massage Therapist. 😉

    Really, though, self care is the art of practicing self love. In talking to people who struggle to find the time for self care and upon digging deeper what we actually discover is that people struggle to find themselves worthy of taking time out for themselves. They feel guilty when they do.

    Give that a minute to sink in.

    As moms we give, give, and give some more. It’s so important to give back to ourselves in order to fill our cup as well as allowing ourselves to receive. Ever heard the saying “You can’t pour from an empty cup?” Well, I’m here to remind you it’s true.

    Do you ever feel guilty sitting in the tub thinking that you should be doing something else?

    Do you struggle to go to a yoga class because that means your significant other will have to put the kids to bed?

    Do you feel bad when you drop your kids off at the babysitter or dayhome because you want the afternoon to yourself but instead just feel like your kid will feel neglected?

    Here’s the thing: when you make time for yourself you can show up more fully as a human, a mother, a partner, a sister, an employee, and the list goes on!

    I get it. Sometimes the days get away on you when you’re dealing with babies, toddlers or older kids. But self-care doesn’t always require a ton of time.

    Here are some self care tips that don’t involve a lot of time at all but rather a shift in your mindset to one that makes choices from a place of self love and honouring yourself.

    Saying no and having boundaries.

    Don’t say yes to All. The. Things. Only say yes when you really mean it and when you want to do that Thing. Don’t overcommit and maybe you will have time to do some yoga in your living room or get out to that class! Being a people pleaser doesn’t get anyone anywhere. Do you. Have boundaries on what you can and can’t do and stick with them.

    Take some time away from your phone.

    Set your phone to vibrate. Answer it only when you want to. That’s why they invented voicemail. Take breaks from Social Media. I always have my notifications turned off and I check in when I want to. Don’t be a slave to your phone! Be present with the ones you love and disconnect from your phone.

    Watch your thoughts.

    This means being aware of your inner critic. We all have one. No one is perfect. But the difference lies in whether or not we allow that voice to rule our lives. Tell it to take a hike and replace that thought with something kind. Talk to yourself the way you would talk to your child. Yeah. Let that sink in. You definitely wouldn’t say that nasty thought to your child.

    Delegate and ask for what you need. Don’t be afraid to ask your partner to throw in the laundry or cook dinner. Got company coming for dinner and need that last ingredient? Ask them to pick it up. I’m sure they won’t mind, in fact, people love to help so tell them how they can.

    Choose foods that nourish you and help you feel healthy.

    Make a conscious choice to choose the option that is lower in sugar, has more vegetables, less caffeine….whatever! Think good, better, best.

    Get help before things get bad.

    This could be your mental or physical health. Why walk around in pain, agony or even sadness if there are professionals out there waiting to help you? Reach out. Often if you catch things early you can recover more quickly. I am a big fan of preventative wellness.

    Call a friend or make regular time to catch up with your girlfriends.

    Women are wired differently. Men have a more typical response to stress – fight or flight. Women do, too, but not so much. When women feel stressed they “tend or befriend”. The best way to produce oxytocin in your brain is to connect with another human being by nurturing or helping them, OR by having a chat with a close friend and venting about what’s REALLY going on. None of that surface crap about the weather.

    Drink enough water to stay hydrated.

    Go to bed earlier. Get enough rest. When you are tired, rest. Even if you don’t sleep, put your feet up for a bit or lay down in bed and close your eyes.

    Take 3 deep breaths to reset and release stress throughout your day if you are having “a moment”. You know those moments when you spill all the breast milk you just pumped and the dog crapped on the carpet and the babies screaming and the toddler’s cutting his own hair.

    When you make your health and wellbeing a priority in your life and take the time you need for self-care, the ripple effect it has on your family and your kids is hugely influential. You are role modelling for them what it means to take good care of yourself and create healthy habits. And you don’t have to do it alone. So whatever you need, whether its a yoga class, acupuncture, Chiro, counselling, or a spa day-make the time and book it in.

    And if you need a massage or reflexology session, I’m here to support you in that way.

    Lori is a mobile registered Massage therapist and Reflexologist in Calgary, AB. A busy mom of 2 her passion is helping moms during pregnancy, postpartum and into motherhood feel better in their bodies, relax and unwind and transition to motherhood with ease. To find out more about her services or to book a massage go to www.loripohlmassage.ca

    For a chance to win a free 60 minute mobile session click here to enter! Contest closes Friday, September 14th at  6pm.

    Start Off The School Year With A Smile

    Back-to-school time is the perfect time to incorporate good oral health habits into a child’s daily routine. At Sierra Dental, with our Children’s Hygiene Program, we want to help you make sure your kids are ready to start their school year right, and an important part of that is making sure they have a healthy smile to show off. Sierra Dental has 3 locations in Calgary and Airdrie. We offer all general dentistry services and have a Certified Orthodontist, Periodontist, Denturist and Pediatric Specialist.

    BACK TO SCHOOL CHECKLIST:

    Schedule a dental visit

    Get back to the regular brushing routine

    Focus on good nutrition

    Practice smiling!

    Dental problems can get in the way of your child concentrating in school and even cause your child to miss school days for emergency dental appointments or tooth aches. Having a good oral care routine at home and encouraging proper dental maintenance not only builds self- confidence, but it teaches your kids how to keep their health in high priority.

    Oral care is usually listed last on most back to school to do lists, but it’s an important part of a child’s health.

    Here are some back to school dental tips to help your kids shine:

    • Get your kids in the routine of brushing their teeth at least twice a day.

    • A 2-minute brushing timer beside the sink (we are happy to provide one for you) will encourage your kids to spend time on their oral health during the school year.

    • Replace your toothbrushes regularly- we recommend that you replace your toothbrush every 3 months to avoid buildup of germs and bacteria.

    • See a dentist for your child’s regular dental exam before they go back to school, if you haven’t already.

    • Pack healthy lunches consisting of fruits and vegetables to make sure your child gets the nutrition they need. Replace soft drinks and juices with water to keep your kids sugar consumption low.

    • Schedule all outstanding dental appointments, like fillings, before your kids go back to school so they won’t have to miss any school days during the year.

    Sierra Dental’s Orthodontist and Pediatric Dentist

    Dr. Mostafa Altalibi received his D.M.D from the prestigious McGill University, graduating with the highest honour as the valedictorian of his class and having won numerous other awards including the American Association of Orthodontists Award.

    Dr. Altalibi is currently involved in exciting research at the Positive Psychology Institute at the University of Pennsylvania, to establish the means to boost his patients’ self-esteem throughout orthodontic treatment. He’s also an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Alberta Undergraduate Dental Clinic. He has published numerous research articles in respected scientific peer-reviewed journals on cleft lip and palate, surgical procedures, obstructive sleep apnea, and the new cone beam tomography technology. Moreover, Dr. Altalibi is an examiner and fellow of the Royal College of Canada.

    Dr. Amin Salmasi hails from Montreal and has studied and worked all across Canada. He has always been an avid student and has pursued multiple fields of research and science. He started his journey at McGill University studying the field of microbiology and immunology. Upon completion of degrees in microbiology and immunology, he obtained his dental degree at McGill, then entered the hospital dental residency program at the British Columbia Children’s Hospital (BCCH) in Vancouver.

    During his academic career, Dr. Amin was a clinical instructor at UBC in the pediatric dentistry department. There he would teach dental students the best methods for interacting with and treating children of all ages and abilities. Also concurrent with his studies, Dr. Amin practiced dentistry in many different communities ranging from small (North Battleford, Saskatchewan) to large (Vancouver).

    SIERRA DENTAL (CALGARY AND AIRDRIE LOCATIONS) 403-297-9600 WWW.SIERRADENTAL.CA

    Summer Toy Giveaways: Winner List

    This summer we have partnered with Mastermind Toys for a fabulous summer of toy giveaways! Every week for the length of the summer (nine weeks), we’ll be giving away an awesome toy(s) just waiting to be played with over the summer! Thank you Mastermind for being such amazing community sponsors and for these cool summer toys!

    This page will be updated regularly with the winner of the week’s prize courtesy of Mastermind Toys! Here are the list of winners:

    Week #1: Sago Bath Toys & Play-Doh: Colette V.

    Week #2: Hape Play Buckets & Brilliant Bugs Book: Jill J.

    Week #3: Pogo Stick: Amery D.

    Week #4: Fubbles: Candace C.

    Week #5: Panda Rollers Game: Soraya R.

    Week #6: Ball-A-Baloos: Andrea T.

    Week #7: Baby Toys: Carol-Anne B.

    Week #8: Owl Truck/Play-Doh: Michelle B.

    Week #9: Dianne G.