#Healthy, Parenting, Technology

10 Types of Cyberbullying Parents Should Know About

Jack Prommel– Upsplash

Stay informed to protect yourself and children!

Cyberbullying is best defined as the use of electronic communication to bully a person, typically by sending messages of an intimidating or threatening nature. Over the past decade or so, cyber bullying has become more and more common due to the constant increase in technological use. To help parents stay informed about Cyberbullying, a list of common types of cyber bullying is provided below:

Harassment

Harassment occurs when the bully sends offensive and threatening messages via electronic forms of communication to his or her target. Multiple people may even gang up to send thousands of messages to the victim at once.

Impersonation or Fake Profiles

Impersonation is when someone creates a fake profile in another person’s name or hacks into another person’s account. The cyber bully pretends to be his or her victim online, and tarnishes the victim’s reputation.

Flaming

Flame wars involve the repeated exchanges of “angry, rude, or obscene [electronic] messages” between individuals.

Denigration

Denigration is an attempt to damage the victim’s reputation or ruin the friendships he or she has, by spreading unfounded gossip or rumours online.

Exclusion

Exclusion occurs when someone has been intentionally excluded or singled out from online group activities such as group conversations and multiplayer games.

Outing

Outing occurs when the cyber bully uses technological means to publicly “[share] private information without permission with the intent to hurt” the victim.

Natasha Hall– Upsplash

Dissing

Dissing is the act of sending or posting cruel information about your child online, to damage their reputation or friendships with others.

It can also include posting material online such as photos, screenshots or videos. The cyberbully wants to put your child down, so draws attention to what they are saying about them to make other people think they’re not cool. The cyberbully is usually someone your child knows. This can make it really upsetting.

Trickery

The cyber bully may employ methods to trick his or her victim into believing “they are speaking in confidence with a close friend so that they share sensitive information”, such as secrets or humiliating information. Once the cyber bully has obtained the information, he or she will use it against the victim by publicly disseminating it to others, “in an attempt to shame the victim.” The two forms of cyber bullying – outing and trickery – often go hand-in-hand.

Cyber stalking

Cyber stalking is a form of harassment. Victims usually receive threatening and intimidating electronic messages from cyber bullies. Victims may often start to believe “the intimidator can move offline and harm them physically,” causing them to be overly suspicious of their surroundings as well.

Cat fishing

Catfishing is when another person steals your child’s online identity, usually photos, and re-creates social networking profiles for deceptive purposes.

A catfish is someone who wants to hide who they are. They will look at your child’s social networking profile and take any information they want to create a fake persona. Sometimes they will only take your child’s photos and use fake names and information.

Nathana Rebouças– Upsplash

The Cyberbullying Problem

What you can do

Problem: If has been a crime or someone is at immediate risk of harm.

Solution: Call 911.

Problem: Someone is feeling hopeless, helpless, thinking of suicide.

Solution: To talk to someone now:

For Spanish speakers:

For deaf/hard of hearing:

Free and confidential support resources are available to you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Problem: If someone is acting differently than normal, such as always seeming sad or anxious, struggling to complete tasks, or not being able care for themselves.

Solution: Find a local counselor or other mental health services

Resource: StopBullying.Gov

Parenting

Father’s Day Gift Guide 2021 (DIY, Online, and Retail)

man in black leather jacket carrying boy in black leather jacket
Photo Credit- Kelly Sikkemma from Upsplash

With Father’s Day around the corner, its time to consider which gift would make the perfect gift for Father’s Day. To help eliminate any confusion, Here is a compiled a list of gifts on this Father’s Day Gift Buying Guide to get your brain spinning on ideas.

Amazon.com

Fathers Day Nut Gift Basket in Wooden Tray + Red Ribbon

Best Dad Ever Custom Blanket with 4 Photos Personalized Picture Blanket Customized Gifts for Daddy/Grandpa for Birthday Father’s Day

Neck Shoulder Back Massager with Heat

Father’s Day Gifts, Personalized Dad Cutting Board

Picture Frame

D.I.Y. Gifts Children Can Make For Dad

Grill Master Handprint Platter

Click the photo to visit- Intersweetz.com

Yoda Best Dad Hand Print

Click the photo to learn how to create this craft!

Best POP in the World Popcorn

Click the photo to learn how to create this craft!

Dinosaur Card

Click the photo to learn how to create this craft!
  • Fathers Day Lego Jar- Click Here
  • You Rock Dad Art- Click Here
  • Teenage Survivor- Click Here
  • Golfing Art- Click Here

  • Your Little Peanut- Click Here
  • O-Fishally Awesome- Click Here
  • We’re Nuts About You Dad- Click Here

Retail Stores

  • Strap Sandals- Click Here
  • Safari Hat- Click Here
  • Pajama Set- Click Here
#Healthy, Nighttime Routines, Parenting, Sleep

Types of Common Sleep Disorders in Children

Annie Spratt from Unsplash

When thinking about the topic of healthy sleeping patterns for children, there is a lingering question of ‘how’ and ‘why’ are sleeping patterns potentially unhealthy for children? As a means of providing factual information, a general background to common sleeping disorders is provided.

As always, parents are encouraged to consult with a medical professional if there is a concern. The evidence within this article are for factual purposes only and not intended for medical advice.

At times, children experience discomfort before and during bedtime. This is normal. However, sleep disorders are generally diagnosed when there seems to be a lot of problems in bed.

What is Sleep Apnea?

Sleep Apnea is best defined as when a person stops breathing for a specified amount of time during sleep. This is usually due to an obstruction or blockage in an airway. The medical term is obstructive sleep apnea. Over time, sleep apnea has a long term effect on learning, growth, behavior, and heart problems. When children experience sleep apnea, their oxygen levels fall. In turn, this causes the child to experience discomfort in sleeping due to the inability to breathe.

Common signs of obstructive sleep apnea in children include the following:

  • Snoring, snorting, or gasping for air, breathing heavily
  • Bedwetting
  • Restless sleeping and sleeping in unusual positions
  • Sleepwalking and waking from nightmares

What is Restless Leg Syndrome?

Restless Leg Syndrome is a sleep disorder that can affect children and adolescents. Restless Leg Syndrome occurs when a child is uncomfortable and resists the ability to stop moving his or her legs. Although this can occur throughout the day, when the symptoms occur during sleep, it can then be considered a sleeping disorder.

When experiencing these symptoms, children generally get up and walk around, toss and turn and kick. As a result, the child misses a significant amount of sleep when restless leg syndrome occurs, due to this discomfort. When attempting to fall asleep with restless leg syndrome, children may need to get out of bed to stretch and move around. Children with this sleeping disorder are often sleepy during the daytime and may require additional sleeping time or naps.

Restless leg syndrome may also cause moodiness, irritability, hyperactivity, and difficulty concentrating at school.

What Are Nightmares?

Leo Rivas from Unsplash

If you have children, I am sure you have been awaken in the middle of the night to re-tuck them into bed due to a bad dream or nightmare. Nightmares cause children to wake up crying and can lead to stress at bedtime. Nightmares are scary dreams. Nightmares tend to happen when children have reached another level within their REMS (Rapid Eye Movement Sleep) cycle. The longer a child stays asleep, the more intense the dream tends to be due to the increased stage within the sleep cycle.

Once a nightmare occurs, children experience difficulty with going back to sleep. When a child is experiencing a nightmare, parents are cautioned to look out for the following: crying, shaking, kicking, screaming, disorientation, sweating and breathing fast. Nightmares can have an effect on children during the day, as they may have lost significant hours of sleep the night before.

What Is Hypersomnia?

Annie Spratt from Unsplash

Hypersomnia is narcolepsy. Narcolepsy is the inability to stay awake during the daytime hours followed by hallucinations and loss of muscle movements. Children that experience hypersomnia are expected to need additional naps, to get through the day. This condition is stated to be rare in children. Children that experience hypersomnia will require additional sleep after waking from 10 or more hours of sleep. Common symptoms associated with hypersomnia are disorientation, a need for naps, slow speech, and loss of appetite.

#Budgeting, #Healthy, Cooking, Grocery Shopping, Parenting

How To: Grocery Shopping On A $4 Daily Budget

There are many joys to raising one big happy family. But, let’s get real, feeding one big happy family is another story. Parent’s of one or multiples can relate to this blog post. There are many ways to maintain a daily, weekly, or monthly grocery shopping budget. We are going to explore some of these areas as a means of learning more options when it comes to grocery shopping for your family.

Meal Planning

One strategy is to meal plan. If you’re anything like me, your car wheels are spinning from sun up until sun down, most days. Meal planning eliminates the temptation of stopping at local fast food restaurants and provides a health meal alternative for you and your family. To successfully meal plan, it is suggested that the “planner” and “meal prepper” arrange all of the meal items on Sunday prior to the week.

Now let’s look at Meal Planning On A Budget. This simply involves the core components of a meal- the protein, vegetable, and carbohydrate. The simplest and cheapest way to accomplish this is by sticking to one protein (chicken, fish, broccoli-for vegan families), one choice of carb (rice, sweet potato), and mix up the vegetables throughout the week. Boring right?! You’re encouraged to get creative when fixing these items for your family. Change up the spices blends and cooking styles. Instead of grilling the chicken, place a few pieces in the oven or boil them.

Tips for Meal Planning On A Budget

  1. Create a menu in advance
  2. Purchase meals around sale items
  3. Plan one meatless meal a week
  4. Check your inventory at home, first
  5. Make a meal that your family loves
  6. Utilize those leftovers
  7. Integrate grains and veggies
  8. Make extras-when possible

Keeping Your Grocery Bill at $120 and Under

Living on a Cheap provides some very reasonable solutions to maintaining a $4 day grocery bill. This averages to about $120 a month. For larger families, the budget might need to be adjusted, however, the same concepts can be applied. These tips, along with my personal experience tips will be given:

  1. Eliminate Bottled Water- Purchase a water diffuser pitcher or faucet attachment one time versus constantly purchasing a $4 case of bottled water weekly.
  2. Eliminate Fruit Juices and Sodas- Fruit juices tend to cause dental health. Sodas are packed with sugar. Eliminating this item will help your pockets in more than one way.
  3. Eliminate Coffee- One cup of coffee at Starbucks ranges from $4-$6. Making coffee at home can add up as well. There is creamer, sugar, coffee grains, and filters. This one will be hard for coffee drinkers.
  4. Eliminate Alcoholic Beverages- Eliminate or save these items for a special occasion.
  5. Purchase Fresh or Frozen Fruits- Many times, the frozen fruit are much cheaper than fresh fruit. It may not be a first preference for most, however, it gets the job done.
  6. Purchase Fresh or Frozen Vegetables- The same concept applies to vegetables. However, frozen store brand vegetables are significantly cheaper. One bag of Great Value brand (Walmart) broccoli is $.99 compared to other $2.99 brands.
  7. Keep Snacks Simple- Snacks need to stay simple, plain and simple. At most homes, snacks go FAST. I suggest keeping these items simple when possible. Rather than purchasing an already made cheese and cracker for $3.29, purchase a $.99 cent box of crackers and $.99 cent cheese. This is just an example. All families have their own favorite snacks. See if you can re-create them cheaper!
  8. Purchase Beans and Grains in Bulk- I always, always, always have some sort of rice on hand. Rice is a simple go-to and easily purchased in bulk. The same for beans. When searching, purchase these items in larger bags and portion them out when cooking for the week.
  9. Purchase Raw Foods Over Already Prepared- This goes for chicken, fish, beef, steak, and even some vegetables and pastry’s. Kroger is currently selling a “Meal Kit” for a family of 4 for $19.99. This only feeds your family for one night versus purchasing raw items and portioning them out for much cheaper.
  10. Focus On Nutrition- Focusing on nutrition while shopping will eliminate MOST of the store items, trust me.
  11. Milk, Milk, Milk- I tend to find myself buying two gallons per week. That’s a lot of milk! When possible, replace the milk drinking with water.

Grocery Shopping Tips

  1. Shop On A Full Stomach- Yes, everything looks delicious when you’re hungry. Just don’t do it.
  2. Create a List and Be Prepared to Say No- Your children will go find the largest box (64 OZ) of cereal when you already have some at home. Just create a list and be prepared.
  3. Buy Non-Grocery Related Items at Dollar Store- This includes laundry detergent, washing powder, soap, and bleach, etc. These items are much cheaper outside of the grocery store.
  4. Shop Store Brands- Not all store brands are created equally, I know. Shop around. There are some really great buys in store brand.
  5. Don’t Fall for the 10 for 10- Only use this purchase, if you are truly going to use 10 items of the same thing. These sales are a quick way to rack up you total.
  6. Learn to Bake or Cook- When in doubt, just cook it at home. The frozen chicken alfredo lasts one night versus purchasing the items at and cooking 2 days worth.

Nighttime Routines, Parenting

Healthy Sleeping Patterns for Children

The Sleep Foundation describes the role of a healthy sleeping pattern is a key contributor to the development of young minds. Also, there is a direct relation to healthy sleeping patterns and overall happiness, as sleep has an effect on cognitive performance, mood, resiliency, learning and memory.

Image provided by The American Academy of Pediatrics.

As always, parents are encouraged to consult with a medical professional if there is a concern. The evidence within in this article are for factual purposes only and not intended for medical advice.

According to Stanford Children’s Health, parents can help their children develop healthy sleeping patterns by focusing on what’s important when it comes to sleep. Below are tips to establish healthy sleeping patterns for your children.

The Effects of Not Receiving Enough Sleep on Children

  • There is a direct correlation to a child experiencing sleep deprivation and the behavior patterns of a child with ADHD- The Sleep Foundation
  • Lack of sleep can cause many problems including decreased brain development, learning problems and more frequent negative emotions. It can also contribute to weight management problems, growth issues and increased frequency of illnesses- The Children’s Hospital of Colorado
  • Lack of sleep can cause stress and lowered motivation. Over time, children can begin to develop anxiety and depression- About Kids Health
Image credits- Good Night Baby Moon Bedtime Story

Tips To Establish Healthy Sleeping Patterns

1. Turn off computer screens and lights well in advance. It is suggested that children “power down” well enough in advance so that children have enough winding down time.

2. Establishing a bedtime routine with the help of your child. Let them decide which thing you both should do first (such as taking a bath, reading, and brushing teeth).

3. Allow your child to choose their favorite bedtime bear or stuffed animal.

4. Take a bath, read a story, or sing a song. For more information on bedtime story book lists, read 90 Of The Best Bedtime Stories. To help your child relax, read The Best Bedtime Stories To Relax Your Child Before Bedtime for an age by age guide to bedtime stories for children.

5. Stay positive and keep practicing! It is suggested that parents do not punish their children for getting up during bedtime. Avoid negative associations with bedtime and reward your child when he or she stays in bed and falls asleep.

Parenting, Self-Care

Wildflowers-What Kind You Should Be On The Lookout For This Summer?

Black Eyed Susan’s

Black Eyed Susan’s are the most popular wildflower in America. These bright flowers can be found in open fields and can reach up to 3 feet tall each. Butterflies, bees, and a variety of insects are attracted to the flowers for the nectar. Expect these flowers to bloom between June and October of each year.

Common Milkweed

Common milkweeds can be found throughout the United States, however, they are more prominent in the eastern states. These flowers are high in fragrance and attract varying types of pollinators including the Monarch butterfly. The Monarch butterfly is known to lay their eggs in the milkweed plant. These flowers bloom midsummer.

Pink Evening Primrose

The Pink Evening Primrose is native of the southeastern region of the United States. This wildflower spreads rapidly and tends to push down other plants when planted. It is suggested to grow this plant within a container to prevent wide spreading.

Fox Glove

This beautiful and unique flower is native to Europe and the Mediterranean region. Although extremely beautiful, Fox Gloves are poisonous. Fox Gloves produce 20 to 80 purple-pink flowers ranging in different colors. Foxglove’s bloom from June to September.

Spiderwort

Spiderwort is native to North America, South America, and Central America and blooms in the spring. Spiderworts can grow up to two feet. When a Spiderwort is cracked open, the stem of the secrets a white, sticky substance that becomes thread-like and silky once hardened (similar to a spider’s web). This is why the flower is named Spiderwort.

New England Aster

New England Aster flowers are native to Northeastern United States. It is recommended that these plants receive full sunlight. These flowers range in colors of white, purple, yellow, and pink with yellow centers.

Plains Coreopsis

Plains Coreopsis plant is commonly found in Canada, northeast Mexico, and much of the United States. This plant is an annual flower. Planters can expect several months of bloom and color until Fall/Winter. It generally reaches 3-4’ in height.

Animal Facts, Clever Kids Corner, Parenting, Teachers

All About Seals

Cute, lovable, and amazing swimmers! Read below to learn more about seals.

Environment

  • Seals live in the cold ocean waters of the Arctic or off the coasts of Antarctica depending on the type of seal.
  • Fur seals and sea lions live in the Northern Pacific between Asia and North America and off the coasts of South America, Antarctica, southwestern Africa and southern Australia.
  • Harp, ringed, hooded, spotted, bearded and ribbon seals live in the Arctic. Crabeater, Weddell, leopard and Ross seals live in the Antarctic.
  • Seals also make caves to live within.

Diet

  • Seals are known to eat fish, but they will also eat eel, squid, octopus and lobster.
  • A seal mom milk can be 50% fat and baby seals can drink 2kgs a day!

Other Facts

  • It is estimated there are 2 million to 75 million individual seals, according to the IUCN.
  • Seas prefer cold water! That explains why they are found in Antartica!
  • In the wild, seals can live for up to 30 years with females having a higher life expectancy than the males.
  • Seals can sleep underwater!
  • Seal baby and mom recognize each other with a wild call after experiencing separation.

Best Seal Spotting Locations in Long Island, NY

Jones Beach Energy and Nature Center – Wantagh.

Atlantic Marine Conservation Society – Southampton.

Coastal Research and Education Society of Long Island (CRESLI) – Westhampton Beach.

Montauk State Park – Montauk.

Clever Kids Corner, Outdoor Activities

Side Walk Chalk Inspiration Ideas

Sidewalk chalk is an inexpensive activity that provides hours of fun and encourages creativity!

Look below for some of my favorite sidewalk chalk ideas.

Trolls

Mystical Reading

Fish Out of Water

Future Fire Lady

Up, Up and Away!

Swinging the Day Away

Floating in Thin Air

Me and My Pet Dragon

Over the Rainbow

Photo Credits: NJ Family, Popsugar, S & S Blog

Parenting, Self-Care

Essential Oils for Moms- How to Use And What You Should Know

Essential oils are here to stay. Whether you utilize these oils as a home fragrance, headache remedy, sinus pressure, joint relief or therapeutic treatment, we are going to explore some of the major essential oils every mom should have on hand.

Aromatherapy is the art of using natural essential oils to improve the balance of body and mind.

There are many benefits to using aromatherapy in day to day life. Read below to learn more!

Lavender

The most popular essential oil. Lavender oil promotes relaxation and believed to treat anxiety, fungal infections, allergies, depression, insomnia, eczema, nausea, and menstrual cramps. Lavender is safe for mom and baby!

One study found that when moms bathed their infants in lavender scented water, multiple benefits for both mom and baby were experienced. These benefits include calmness and encouraged the baby to go to sleep, peacefully. Lavender can also be used for diaper rashes. Read more here.

Peppermint

NIH defines peppermint as oil taken from the peppermint leaf. Based on studies, peppermint is known to treat many physical ailments. Peppermint is promoted for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), other digestive problems, the common cold, sinus infections, headaches, and other conditions. Peppermint oil is promoted for topical use (applied to the skin) for problems like headache, muscle aches, joint pain, and itching. In aromatherapy, peppermint oil is promoted for treating coughs and colds, reducing pain, improving mental function, and reducing stress.

Peppermint can be used while breastfeeding for mom when used as a topical cream. It is suggested not to use peppermint before breastfeeding, as this can have an effect on a young baby. Read more on The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health.

Chamomile

This oil is derived from the chamomile flower, similar to a daisy flower by first glance. Chamomile is known to treat all things related to digestive health including heart burn, upset stomach, and vomiting. Some have utilized Chamomile to soothe their colicky baby. As always, consult a medical professional before giving this remedy to yourself or baby.

Chamomile is also known to manage anxiety, serve as a mouth rinse, heal physical wounds, relieve back pain, and serves as a sleep remedy. Read more about this amazing essential oil here.

Eucalyptus

Eucalyptus is known for aiding as a cough suppressant and can be found in Vick’s Vapor Rub. Eucalyptus also is used as a means of controlling blood sugar, bug repellent, soothing cold sores, and joint pain relief.

Almighty Eucalyptus can also be used to get rid of small rodents, like rats. It is not advised to take this oil by mouth, as it is very toxic and can cause a severe reaction. Read more here.

Bergamot

Another type of orange tree, however, it’s called a bergamot plant (Citris Bergamia). The uses are going to amaze you because unlike most of the oils on the list, this one focuses on hair and beauty treatments.

Bergamot is used in beauty creams and is often mixed with coconut oil as a skin softener. This oil can be added into shampoo, body wash, facial scrubs, homemade candles, and air fresheners. Bergamot is used to treat acne and scars by leaving on overnight. Bergamot is also used for hair as a moisturizer and scalp treatment. For an irritated scalp, it is suggested to leave this oil in your hair overnight and tie it down for full absorption. Read more on this oil here.