Thursday, January 30, 2014

Happy Kids = Happy Mom

As a health and wellness blog, one thing I frequently forget to blog about is a healthy mind.  With two young boys running around, sometimes my sanity is the last thing I seem to have control over.  So moms, this post is for you.  For anyone who's ever lost it when your kids are driving you nuts because you are stuck inside all day.

You've heard the saying "If momma ain't happy, ain't no one happy!"  Well, I think it goes other ways too.  Like when the kids are happy, momma's happy!  When they are bored and cranky, my world starts to get crunchy.  I morph into a non-patient mom-ster ready to bite anyone's head off.  Especially on no nap days when the kids are particularly restless and in full trouble making mode.

One of the best cures is to take a moment for myself, get collected, and then break out an imagination game.  Generally, when my boys are the wildest, it's because they desperately want my attention. The trick is to put down the phone or my computer (FB, emails, Candy Crush...) and simply spend some time playing with them.  This can be difficult when I have a list of other things I'd like to get done that day.  But in the end, a little time spent with my kiddos goes a long ways.

Here are two ideas of things you can make for your kids on a low budget that will stir the imagination.

No Sew Superhero capes

I have boys so this one was a huge hit but you can also make princess outfits or tutus for girls for pretty cheap too.  What I've found is most little kids love to play some form of "dress up".  These capes where made out of simple t-shirts.  I went to my local thrift store and picked out two XXL t-shirts in the men's section for a dollar a piece.

Next I laid the shirts out on the floor and cut out a triangle shape with the collar in tact at the top of the triangle.  Then, with some iron on transfer paper, I printed superhero logos and ironed them on my capes.

That's it!  The kids love them.  I love that they use their imagination and I even let them wear them in public which they think is the coolest thing ever.  And when they are happy, I am happy.

DIY Fort Kits

Using the leftover material from my capes, I fashioned two bags.  Simply cut a long rectangle out of the remaining material keeping the bottom hemline in tact.  Fold over in half so that you now have a square of material.  With the hem line of the t-shirt facing the top, sew the bottom and the side leaving the top open.  Turn inside out to hide the hem.  String a shoelace through the hem line (what was the bottom of the t-shirt) to make a draw string.  If desired, make an iron on for the front with the child's name on it.  Fill the bag with sheets (I got cute ones for cheap from the thrift store), clips, rope, and a flash light.  On days you are stuck inside, bust out your fort kit and let your imagination flow.

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