HOW TO GENTLY TRANSITION YOUR BABY OR TODDLER FROM CO-SLEEPING




5-INGREDIENT MAGICAL FUDGESICLES

These are so lusciously creamy, sinfully rich-tasting – the kind of thing you put in your mouth and kind of can’t believe what’s happening. Vegan, almost raw, and full of whole food ingredients, they are also downright filling!

5-Ingredient Vegan Magical Fudgesicles
Makes 4 cups / 1 Liter / 10 fudgesicles
Ingredients:
1) ½ cup / 75g unroasted, unsalted cashews
2) 1 14-oz can / 400ml full-fat coconut milk
3) 1 large, ripe avocado
4) 1 cup / 250g pitted, packed soft dates
5) ½ cup / 55g raw cacao powder (cocoa powder will also work)

Optional add-ins:
1) a few pinches sea salt
2) vanilla (seeds from 1 pod, powder, or extract)
3) a few drops of food-grade essential oils (peppermint, orange, almond etc.)
4) finely diced fresh fruit (strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, mango etc.)
5) a pinch of cayenne pepper
6) espresso powder
7) finely chopped toasted nuts (cashews, hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios etc.)

Optional toppings:
1) melted raw chocolate (recipe here) or melted dark chocolate
2) cacao nibs
3) finely chopped toasted nuts (cashews, hazelnuts, almonds, pistachios etc.)
4) dried fruit (I used raspberry on the ones pictured)
5) citrus zest (lemon, orange, lime)

Directions:
1. Place cashews in lightly salted water and let soak for 4-8 hours (overnight is fine).

2. Drain the cashews and rinse well. Add to a blender (a high-speed blender is highly recommended) with the remaining ingredients (and any flavourings, if using) and blend on high until as smooth as possible. Add water only if necessary – you want to mixture to remain quite thick.

3. Spoon mixture in popsicle molds. Firmly knock the molds on the counter a few times to remove any air bubbles. Insert a popsicle stick into each mold and place in the freezer until set – at least 6 hours. To remove popsicles, run the mold under hot water until you can easily pull a fudgesicle out.

4. If you want to decorate your fudgesicles, dip or drizzle them with melted chocolate and sprinkle with desired toppings. Eat immediately, or place back in the freezer to set until ready to enjoy.

4 Things Worse Than Not Learning To Read In Kindergarten

The year Sam started kindergarten, he turned 6 in October. He was one of the oldest children in his class, and he didn’t know how to read. When he started first grade he was almost 7, and he still didn’t know how to read. Fortunately for Sam, he entered first grade in 1999. And his teachers, Mrs. Gantt and Mrs. Floyd, didn’t panic if a child didn’t learn to read in kindergarten. In fact, they expected that most children would learn to read in first grade. (They also supported and encouraged children who learned to read easily in kindergarten, like Sam’s brother Ben.)

20 Guaranteed Ways to Mess Up Your Children

Parenting is nerve-wracking. You love your children and want them to grow up to be happy, successful adults, but some days you’re not sure how to make that happen.
Sometimes you fear that something you’re doing or saying will mess them up permanently. But here’s the good news: Part of great parenting is avoiding mistakes. Even better news is that you don’t have to discover these mistakes for yourself.
- See more at: https://www.familiesforlife.sg/discover-an-article/Pages/20-Guaranteed-Ways-to-Mess-Up-Your-Children.aspx#sthash.7UKv8IoI.dpuf

Stop Telling Me I'm "Lucky" To Have A Husband Who Helps With The Kids

But despite all of my husband’s wonderful qualities, I have to admit that it’s always made me slightly uncomfortable when anyone has told me how “lucky” I am to have the type of husband that I do — the kind that thinks of nothing of getting up with our kids at night, the kind that happily makes dinner, the kind that I would never doubt could handle all four of our offspring on his own if I happened to have an overnight business trip. (Hey, a girl can dream, right?)

Teaching Young Children About Bias, Diversity, and Social Justice

We've somehow decided that little kids can't understand these complex topics, or we want to delay exposing them to injustices as long as possible (even though not all children have the luxury of being shielded from injustice).

However, young children have a keen awareness of and passion for fairness. They demand right over wrong, just over unjust. And they notice differences without apology or discomfort.

Racial identity and attitudes begin to develop in children at a young age. Two- and three-year-olds become aware of the differences between boys and girls, may begin noticing obvious physical disabilities, become curious about skin color and hair color/texture, and may also be aware of ethnic identity.

5 Elementary Strategies

1. Use children's literature: There's a wealth of children's books (check out here: http://www.adl.org/education-outreach/books-matter/#.VwQW3_krLcs) that can be read aloud and independently to approach the topic of bias, diversity, and social justice.

2. Use the news media: Find topics and news stories that bring forth these themes and discuss them in the classroom -- like the nine-year-old boy who was banned from bringing his My Little Pony backpack to school because it was the source of bullying.

3. Teach anti-bias lessons: Social and emotional skill development lessons are the foundation, and then teachers can move to lessons on identity, differences, bias, and how bias and bullying can be addressed individually and institutionally.

4. Give familiar examples.
Take advantage of children's interest in books, TV shows, toys, and video games, and use them as opportunities to explore diversity, bias, and social justice.

5. Explore solutions: Re-think the concept of "helping others" to include discussions about the inequities that contribute to the problem and consider actions that can address it. For example, while it's useful to provide food to homeless people, we want to deepen the conversation to convey a social justice perspective and a wider lens with children. Therefore, discuss the stigma and stereotypes of homeless people, learn about unfair housing policies, and reflect on solutions that will reverse the problem in a lasting way and encourage students to take action.

2 Week Meal Planning

Ever since I took on the job of SAHM, I’ve tried my best to save our family money while also continuing to cook healthy(-ish) meals at home. I’ve always enjoyed cooking and coming up with new meals for Mr. Oyster and me to eat – but my excitement for it has changed a bit since having to juggle 1 or 2 children while cooking and also cooking things that they won’t eat. I know it’s a common parenting challenge, but it’s one that’s definitely taken away some of my enjoyment of cooking.

Meet the 11-year-old girl who scored an $11million deal with Whole Foods to sell her lemonade that's sweetened with honey in an effort to save bees

Mikaila Ulmer's BeeSweet Lemonade will be carried by 55 stores in Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Louisiana. When Whole Foods saw the promise in her lemonade, the supermarket agreed to sell the products in its regional stores. If Mikaila's lemonade does well, it'll eventually be sold nationwide.
The savvy 6th-grader from Austin, Texas, has developed her signature Me & The Bees lemonade stand into a thriving national business.

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Toddlers are true innovators who think outside the box, and they work quickly. By that, I mean, you can’t leave them alone for a second or they will bathe themselves in Vaseline or eat food from the dog’s bowl. Once, when I was trying to write an email, my toddler found a pair of scissors and decided to give herself bangs. The problem was that the bangs were on the side of her head and not the front, which was not a great look for her.

Should We All Be Raising Gender-Neutral Kids?

After the birth of my daughter, FaceTime conversations with my mother or my mother-in-law usually consist of a lot of cooing. “How’s my little princess doing today?” one of them will ask my five-month-old. “She looks like such a beautiful doll today,” the other will say. After ending a recent call, my husband came up to me and asked if we could please tell the grandmothers to stop referring to our daughter as a princess or a doll. “All dolls and princesses have to do is sit and look pretty,” he said. “Is that the kind of message you want her to grow up with?”