But First, Coffee. How to Really Enjoy Summer With Your Kids This Year

Every. single. morning. I have the same routine. When I hear one of the kids wake up, I throw some clothes on and put on my glasses. I get both of them downstairs, change diapers, give the toddler a drink and fruit, feed the baby if she needs to be fed, and I turn on PBS. (Yes, the baby watches way more TV than my toddler did, and no, the tv is not on all day.) I choose this time wisely to make our tv time, because ya know what I always do next?

Drink my coffee. 

Yes, I realize that a great portion of America drinks their coffee in the morning before really starting their day, but this ritual is more than just “waking up.” It’s not really about the coffee, but more about the me time. Yes, it may seem selfish that I want to enjoy a hot cup of coffee while my kids watch tv, but they are also playing, overjoyed to see one another, and just waking up themselves and this is an absolutely necessary routine we have grown to love. I believe in the importance of independent play with supervision and this is a great way to practice too :).  Plus it only ever lasts about 10 minutes, trust me!

As a stay-at-home mom, my kids need me ALL DAY LONG. I am always there for them. It’s the most amazing thing in the world. Also the hardest. Every mom needs a minute to herself, and I choose to take this minute right when we wake up. It refuels me. It gives me strength. It allows me to take a deep breath before starting the day so that I can reflect on how to be the best mom I can be, before I let myself feel upset or defeated. It’s everything.

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Summer Sensory Play – For Toddlers and Babies

I’m often on the lookout for fun activities that both my children can enjoy. As they get older, it’s much easier to find developmentally and safe things they both like. They even “play together” now sometimes, which I love of course! Toddlers are naturally more independent than babies, but there’s no reason why you can’t enjoy some sensory play this summer with both of your children, which in my case are both under two years old!

I am a bit of a minimalist when it comes to my kids. I love buying things for them, but I almost always get rid of something when we get something new, usually in the form of toys ;). I promote good, old-fashioned fun, and you wont see a ton of complicated homemade Pinterest devices here on the blog. I’ve been there, done that, especially as an elementary teacher. But over the years I’ve realized that kids will probably have more fun with a bin of recycled materials that I already had than an ornate sensory bin that I made myself. Just speaking from my experiences.

Therefore, below you will find some of our favorite, simple, inexpensive ways to ignite your child’s senses, practice motor skills, and have a lot of fun while doing so. Good old outside summer fun. Enjoy!

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Trust

“And you ask “What if I fall?”

Oh but my darling,

What if you fly?”

Erin Hanson

Having trust is tough sometimes. We’ve all been through experiences that have tested our faith and trust and caused us to give up hope. It’s also a tough thing to admit. I’m feeling extra inspirational this week and inspired by the Easter holiday coming up, so I thought I’d share the toughest experience I’ve ever been through – my son’s birth. I hope you gain some inspiration as well, and remember to never be afraid to share your story or give up hope. <3

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