Circadian rhythms refer to the things that occur during a 24 hour period, affected by the amount of light and darkness- plants and animals experience circadian rhythms and our sleep patterns are connected to the circadian rhythm.
Halloween and the time change in one weekend! I am here to support you and your child!
* Make healthy food choices available- have fruits and veggies washed and prepped for easy, healthy snacking. Drink lots of water! Have a plan for meals so you aren't tempted to overindulge.
* Get outside! Rake those leaves as a family, go for a walk in the neighborhood, take a hike and enjoy the leaves, hit the bike trail as a family!
* Allow extra time for your normal bedtime routine- consider extending bath time, read an extra story, be patient!
* Get plenty of rest! Your whole family needs it!
I know, it is October and people are already talking about the holidays. We know that the next few months will be a whirlwind of activity with parties, celebrations, gifts and memories.
Get a head start and get organized now so that you aren't overwhelmed with all of those toys/games/books/etc. I saw a phrase today that resonated with me- "don't just declutter- de-own"- an entire movement over on the "Becoming Minimalist" website- http://www.becomingminimalist.com/dont-just-declutter-de-own/
I had the pleasure of working with two awesome families over the past week- both families have 2 children under the age of 6, and both were swimming in "stuff". I was talking with one of the moms about letting go of stuff that is no longer useful or that the children don't enjoy. We talked about how moving things from her home would not only free up physical space but emotional space as well. She nailed it- by the time I left she had an entire wall lined up with toys that she was going to let go of. She was proud of her work, and so was I!
What to do with those things that you are letting go of? So many options- many of you are on Facebook groups for Moms in your area- take pics and post there. I suggested to this busy mom that she could host an "Toy Open House" to sell things- think garage sale, but not as labor intensive and the prices would be a little bit more because the items would be good quality. We also talked about finding a local Y or other after school program that would gladly accept gently used toys or dress up clothes.
This work is big work that you undertake when you let go of stuff- it isn't easy because of the emotional connection you may have to a toy, or maybe you feel obligated to keep it around because the gift giver would notice that it isn't there. Bottom line- your child enjoyed the toy/gift and now another child will benefit as well.
Contact me to schedule your session- booking for November now! email@example.com
I will wager that you have piles of your child's artwork, right? Items that you just can't bear to throw away, but how to display it? I have a solution! Check out this frame from IKEA- It can hang on the wall, but it can also be an easel!
This little gem is easy enough for children to manipulate themselves as well. When all that artwork comes home, I encourage you to sit down with your child and create a few "piles"- "To Display", "To give away" and "To recycle". You can also get in the habit of re-using those papers for lists, or for wrapping paper, or notecards-- so many ways to repurpose your child's artwork.
I love this frame because it is also fairly inexpensive- $4.99 at our local IKEA. Have a few of these in your home and empower your child to hang their artwork independently!
When a young child creates artwork, it is much more about the process and less about the product, but I believe that we still give that artwork meaning by the way that we respond when they show us something that they made. Do we say "I LOVE that!" or "Those are just scribbles"
I challenge you to think about responding to your child's artwork in another way- "I see that you used red" or "Tell me more about this" or "I was watching you while you were drawing. You had a smile on your face".
Let's get away from gushing praise and move towards being authentic with our children. I don't want my son to expect me to go bananas over every.single.thing.he.does! I want him to have an internal sense of satisfaction about his work and be in touch with how he feels when he is creating.
As we move towards shorter days/more inside time- think of ways that you can empower your child. I would love to work with your family to help you achieve your goals.
It is finally feeling like autumn here- my son was insistent on wearing his winter hat today (a brisk upper 50s). October feels like a good month to pause and take a breath. September was busy with new school, new friends and lots of family birthdays. Little Acorn was busy at various events, which meant time away from my sweet family.
October is that sweet pause before the madness of the holiday rush begins. True, some retailers already have ornaments and decor out, but for the most part, everyone is embracing pumpkins, the changing leaves, the crisp air, apple picking, and relishing the time spent outside. We know that the daylight ends a little bit earlier each night, so we soak up the air and allow it to fill our lungs. I love Spring, and many people associate it with rebirth, but for me, it is all about Autumn.
Here is the truth. I crave the simplicity of Autumn. The sheer beauty. The realization that beauty is fleeting and that the leaves will change and turn brown and then you have to deal with them. I appreciate that we are given this gift- it is almost as if nature is reminding us that our time here is short, and that we need to live it and experience it and let it wash over us. I loved our little walk in our backyard today noticing all of the changes- the garden boxes look bare, except for one lone pink dahlia bloom. There were some leaves in the yard, and hearing my son's awe and admiration for each leaf- watching him crouch down and inspect and smell and then try to pick up every.single.leaf! His hands were overflowing and he asked for help carrying his treasures. He collected acorns and sweetgum ball seeds "to help the squirrels mama" and placed the leaves in piles. I marveled watching him sort the leaves into categories. Most of all, I was grateful for the gift of today and time spent with him. Seasonal allergies affect his little chest so he had a day off from school. My "to do" list is longer than I would like to admit, but the whole point of me stepping out of the classroom was so that I could be there with him and focus on our family and building and growing this business.
I have big dreams for Little Acorn, but I need your help! I would love to find a place to hold classes for children and parents, to be a resource to the community, to have "in stock" items like all of those sweet pitchers and little cheese spreaders and children's aprons/napkins/placemats. I want to be able to serve families and help them refocus on their family by simplifying and creating order and routine. October is a month of quiet preparation- I am immersing myself in the business side of things and learning all sorts of new things about social media and the nuts and bolts of running a business. This business isn't about making money for me- that is not what life is about. For me, the point of Little Acorn is all about connections- connecting to your child in another way, connecting and empowering their independence, their dignity, their grace. Learning something from your child and being present to witness everyday miracles.
If you are interested in more about Montessori philosophy and making it more a part of your family, please contact me and we can work together. Allowing a stranger to come into your home and make suggestions can be intimidating, and I appreciate the trust that you have in me and in our partnership together. Each time I meet a new child and family, I marvel at our stories. Family matters. It is what drives me to do this work- for my family and in service of yours. I look forward to working with you.
Beth is a mom first and foremost. She is also a trained Montessori teacher who is passionate about making the lofty ideals of the Montessori philosophy more real and manageable for families.