How to Talk To Your Daughter About Her Period

The day I started my menstrual period, I thought I was dying. Although I lived with my parents, and two older sisters, no one had prepared me for the changes my body was going through and certainly not what a period was, and what I was suppose to do with it. I was so unprepared for that change that my emotions took a huge hit that day! I guess parenting tips were just something that people didn’t share back then.

How to Talk to Your Daughter About Her Period | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Talk to Your Daughter About Her Period

I will never forget that day when my period started, and the events surrounding it.

Our family was preparing to go to a birthday party for a neighbor, and we still had our evening things to do for dinner before going. I hadn’t felt very good in my stomach that day, but didn’t say anything because I thought that my mom wouldn’t let me go to the party.

About an hour before dinner, I went to the bathroom and instantly, I thought I was going to die because I had never heard of anyone bleeding like this. I knew that I was sick, and that I needed to tell my mom.

Crying hysterically, I told my mom, expecting some kind of commotion to save my life.

Instead, she hands me the largest bandaid that I have ever seen and told me to put it on. That is it… a bandaid! As well as where to find more of them, and how I needed to change them often.

Like all bandaids I have ever seen, I applied the sticky part to my skin, and went to my bed to cry because even my own mother wasn’t bothered that I was dying.

Listening to my mother, I went to change the bandaid often to only find that the bleeding was getting worse and how horrible it hurt to remove those bandaids!

My sister finally found me, on my death bed, crying that no one loved me and wondering if they would even notice when I died or if the party would go on as normal.

As all big sisters do, she explained to me that I wasn’t dying but that I started my period. She continued to say that I will have this happen every month, and it isn’t anything to be afraid of.

When I finally calmed down, I asked her why the bandaids had to hurt so much and if there was a way to make it easier to change.

She laughed so hard when I told her how I had applied these ‘bandaids’ and further educated me on the proper applying and name of the feminine pads.

When we went to the party that evening, I thought everyone knew. I felt so awkward that I just wanted to go home.

As I share my story with other women with daughters, I do it to help them understand what it is like for a naive girl to find out about this on her own, and how traumatic it really can be to them.

It doesn’t have to be, with just a few things in place.

Knowledge Is Power

Change can be a scary thing. It is the unknown that often gets most of us. In all of my own life experiences, the more I know about something new, the easier it was for me to go through.

From child birth, dental procedures, surgeries, seizures caused by fevers and more were all made less stressful because I was given knowledge to know how to handle this new experience.

There is a calm that comes with knowledge.

Share With Excitement

My daughter was well prepared for the day she started her period because I didn’t want her to go through what I did. I decided that I wanted her to be excited about the day her body started its path to womanhood.

She knew what feminine pads were, and how to use them.

We made plans that the day it happened, we would go out on a mother/daughter date to celebrate the start of her womanhood. It seemed like the perfect way to build excitement around what could be an emotional day for a girl.

Eliminate All Myths

Girls and their imaginations can come up with all kinds of myths and believe them.

Things like believing that everyone will know the moment they start because they now have a different look. That isn’t true, so be sure to let them know that people don’t know when someone has their period unless they tell people.

In addition to thinking that they look different, they may think that people will think differently about them. Ensure your daughter that no one will ever think differently of a person because of a natural change that all women experience.

Explain the Limitations 

Having your daughter understand that with a period there may be limitations to what is normal for her.

This may include bleeding heavier when running or being active. Let her know that during that time, she may want to try a heavier absorbent feminine pad, verses a regular one that would be just fine any other time.

Swimming may not be an option, unless you feel comfortable sharing tampons knowledge with her.

You may also want to explain how a period could also cause mood swings and possibly even stomach cramps. Always provide a solution for your daughter to reassure her that there are options to any of the limitations she may experience.

Teach Her How to Track Her Period

Not all girls understand how important it is to track the start of each period. Some girls experience lapses in their period and they become irregular.

The more she understand how important this is for many health reasons, the more of a habit it will become.

Start this Talk Early

Don’t wait until your daughter is in her teens, because many girls today are starting at 9 and 10 years old.

Start discussing the changes as soon as you are ready, but especially when your daughter is approaching 9 year old, because the last thing you desire is for her to think she is dying.  Trust me on that one!

 

How to Keep Ladybugs Out of Your House

When we moved into our new home several years ago, I was surprised by the ladybug invasion that happened in the fall. It was during that time that I learned that these ladybugs were actually lady beetles, looking for a place to hibernate, and our light colored home was the perfect location. Within just a few days, we have hundreds of these insects flying around our home and taking to our high ceilings in our entry way.

I was done, and on a mission!

How to Keep Ladybugs Out of Your House | www.joyinthehome.com

 

How to Keep Ladybugs Out of Your Home

All the research was showing how to provide alternative housing for these ladybugs or lady beetles, but honestly, I wasn’t willing to even be that hospitable to bugs.

I just wanted them gone, and out of my house for good!

We had no choice but to vacuum up as many as we could our first two years, but by the third year I was prepared for war!

I grabbed my Peppermint Oil bottle at the first signs of them flying in my home.

I was surprised to see how many of them had congregated on our front porch in just a matter of a day! Just stepping on the porch proved enough to allow several to fly right in, and to land on all parts of my body.

Prepared for battle, I began to apply straight Peppermint Oil to the edges of the front door, where the frame meets it. This was the exact place of entry for these ladybugs or lady beetles.

I knew most insect do not prefer the fragrance of this oil, but I wasn’t prepared for what I saw!

These lady beetles completely turned around before reaching the actual place where I put the oil. Again and again, I watched one after another try to find entry into our home, as the others did before them, but atlas I had stopped them.

The next year, I was prepared.

I was looking for them every day with my Peppermint Oil in hand, but I didn’t want to apply it too soon, in case it lost its potency before the invasion.

They beat me to it, but only with about 50 of them getting in before I applied straight Peppermint Oil to the edges of our front door for the second year in a row.

It stopped them again!

We only had a few to deal with and I felt as though I was winning.

This year, I had ran out of Peppermint Oil and the day of their arrival was quickly approaching (yes, I knew when they normally came to our front door), so I got it ordered and waited for them.

They next came!

Week after week, I scratched my head wondering where my opponents were, but they never showed up.

I was so shocked by the victory, but excited to know that this was such an easy way to keep ladybugs out of my house for good, without having to have the extra concern about setting up another alternative for them to hibernate for the winter.

Kid-friendly Roll On Oils | www.joyinthehome.com

10 Water Activities – No Pool Required

Everyone loves beating the heat, but not everyone has a pool at their disposal.  Although we can go to a pool often, I know my boys would love to have some refreshing water activities to enjoy the summer months and so I went looking… on Pinterest, because where else would you find such good ideas?

I wanted some new ideas, ones that my children may not have enjoyed yet and I found some!

10 WATER ACTIVITIES - No Pool Required - Bring some new ideas to your summer! | www.joyinthehome.com

Here are 10 Water Activities – No Pool Required

  1. Sponge Water Bombs – These are as fun as they sound and I can't wait to bombard my husband when he returns home from a long hot day, because we roll that way in our home.
  2. Water Balloon Pinatas – This idea takes water bowls (one of my families favorite summer fun) to a whole new level of fun.
  3. Hand Eye Coordination Play – My son absolutely loved this summer fun – all year long! And he still does!
  4. Marble Run Water Slide – What a ‘cool' idea to get the kids playing outside, splashing in the water and having fun together.
  5. Roll Six and SPLASH! – What a fun game that can be played and enjoyed by the youngest and oldest members of your family.
  6. Bobbing for Nemo – This twist for bobbing for apples would be a big hit in our home.
  7. DIY Water Slide – One of my children's favorite thing to do is summer is to attach a hose to our play set and create their own water slide.  They will go up and down that slide for as long as we allow them to run the water.
  8. Water Balloon Slingshot – We picked up one of these at the summer clearance sale and we were smart enough to buy two of them. Instead of ‘dodge ball' we are going to play ‘dodge balloon' and I. CAN. NOT. WAIT!
  9. Water Table – This was a great invention for little ones! They just love to pour and dump.
  10. DIY Slip N' Slide – Purchase a good size tarp, add a small amount of dish soap and then the water. This will prove to be a great cooling off activity the whole family would enjoy!  Of course, you will need to see who slides the furthest, so consider water prove shoes as markers. If you have a lot of space, you may want to purchase the world's longest backyard slip n' slide!



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Nutter Butter Truffles

Nutter Butter Truffles are so easy to make, and incredibly delicious. My family was in love with these immediately! These are the perfect dessert to do ahead of time, and would be a hit to any gathering.

Nutter Butter Truffles - These are SO delicious and incredibly easy to make. No baking necessary! Get your peanut butter fix with these yummies! | www.joyinthehome.com

Nutter Butter Truffles

Our family has enjoyed Oreo Truffles, and one day I wanted something with peanut butter. I started to think about what to make and I wondered how it would turn out if I used Nutter Butter Cookies to make truffles.

I can't tell you just how moist and amazing this recipe is, so you will have to try it for yourself! (Be careful, they are VERY addicting!)

You can freeze these, so feel free to double or triple the recipe and put some in the freezer for another time.

How to Make Nutter Butter Truffles

You will need to buy 2 packs of Nutter Butter Cookies, but if you double the recipe, you will use all but one cookie with three packages of cookies. You will need 1 – 8oz Cream Cheese, about 1 1/2 package of Reese's Peanut Butter Chips and 3/4 cups of Coconut Oil or Crisco.

In a food processor, you will add 40 Nutter Butter Cookies. You will want to make the cookies into crumbs. If you have any bigger pieces just crumble them in your hand.

Next, add the softened cream cheese and mix it together in the processor until a round ball is formed.

Remove the ball of dough, and place it on a prepared cookie sheet lined with wax paper. Using a small melon scooper, scope balls and place on wax paper. Freeze for at least 20 minutes.

A few minutes before removing the balls from the freezer, melt the chips and coconut oil or crisco in the microwave. Be sure to not over cook the chips, by doing only 20 seconds at a time, and stirring in between the next 20 seconds.

Nutter Butter Truffles - Easy to make, and deliciously moist! | www.joyinthehome.com

Place several toothpicks in several balls (one per ball) and dip into the melted mixture. Spin the ball in the bowl to remove the excess coating. Place on wax paper to harden.

To remove the toothpicks (and reuse them) just twist it a few times, and it will come out.

You can cover the whole that the toothpick leaves, by drizzling melted chocolate chips over the top.

This recipes makes approximately 42 balls. Store in the refrigerator or freeze until you are ready to serve. They only need about 30 minutes to thaw.


Feel free to print this recipe for your own cookbook: Nutter Butter Truffles Recipe Card

Nutter Butter Truffles Printable Recipe Card | www.joyinthehome.com

 

S’more No-Bake Bars

S'more no-bake bars is a twist to an old-time family recipe, we call Pollock Fudge. I'm not really sure why it is called that in our family, when most people call them no-bake cookies, but it is what we grew up saying. I decided to switch this recipe up with three flavors that Americans love… chocolate, graham crackers and marshmallows.

Chocolate, graham crackers and marshmallows make us all think of S'mores. This no-bake recipe delivers the s'more taste in a bar! | www.joyinthehome.com

S'more No-Bake Bars

When my kids caught me in the kitchen experimenting with a new idea for a dessert, they got so excited to see that I was putting two of their favorite desserts into one.

I grew up making the Pollock Fudge, whenever my dad desired it to be made. He always wanted to clean out the pan, because he loved the taste of the warm dessert. It was so disappointing to not get to enjoy that all to myself, after making it, but my dad always made me feel good with his compliments of how good it tasted.

As I approached my Senior year in a private school, I had to take Pollock Fudge for frequent bake sales, and it always sold out first.

So when I had a family of my own, I brought out my sauce pan and introduced them to an old family favorite. It quickly became a go-to recipe if a sweet tooth hit us. Now, I get to enjoy the warm dessert scrapings of the pan while the rest is cooling in the pan. However, when my daughter learned to make it herself, I passed on the joy of cleaning the pan before putting it in the skin.

After she recently made me our Pollock Fudge recipe, I started to get inspired for a twist. I know they would love it!

This is just as easy to make, too!

How to Make S'more No-Bake Bars

In a medium to large saucepan, melt 2 sticks of butter on medium heat. Once it is melted, add 1 cup of milk, 1 cup of Dutch Process Cocoa and Evaporated Cane Sugar. Continue to stir this together until it comes to a boil.

Stop stirring, and boil for 5 minutes.

While the mixture is boiling, butter or spray a 9X13 pan. Get the following ingredients ready (don't add yet):

Once the 5 minutes is up, remove pan from the heat and add the vanilla and Marshmallow Fluff. Stir quickly until it is completely melted. Add the cereal, and stir. Gently fold in the miniature marshmallows, and quickly add to the prepared pan.

Cool completely. Cut and store in air tight container.
S'more No-Bake Bars - We doesn't love the taste of chocolate, graham crackers and marshmallows? These quick and easy bars are delicious! | www.joyinthehome.com

These bars are so easy to make, and a hit with the family. You will definitely want a big glass of milk to go with it, because these are very sweet.

 


 

Feel free to print this recipe card here: S'more No-Bake Bars Printable Recipe Card

S'more No-Bake Bars Recipe Card - Print the card for your personal cookbook! | www.joyinthehome.com

 

Clean Air Naturally to Combat Seasonal Allergies

Seasonal allergies haven't been a big thing in our home. That is until the last few years. I have been getting more sensitive to seasonal and indoor allergens. While attending a blogging conference, I came across a sponsor table for Venta-Airwasher, mostly because I immediately noticed a difference in the air around their space.

Clean Air Naturally to Combat Seasonal Allergies - Venta - Airwasher is the best humidifier and air washer. | www.joyinthehome.com

Clean Air Naturally to Combat Seasonal Allergies

I have always loved the first signs of spring, and will open my windows at the first possible weather to air my house out and give that fresh smell going through my entire house.

The problem with doing this will be that I'm also opening my home to pollen. In the past, it just meant that I needed to dust more. However, that has changed in the last few years. I realized that I would start getting more headaches near my sinuses, along with scratching in my throat and eyes.

I was shocked when someone told me that what I continued to experience were allergies. Thankfully they are still mild, and I'm able to continue with life without too many issues.

When Venta-Airwasher gave me the opportunity to review their home unit, I was quick to say, “Yes!” (This is my honest review of their product, and how it has helped our family with more than just seasonal allergies)

Venta - Airwasher | www.joyinthehome.com

We have been using it in our home for just over 2 months at the time of this writing and I'm so excited to share just how amazing this one unit has done for our big house.

Winters are hard in our home, as we experience really dry air. The dry air leaves our skin scratchy and chapped, even though we drink water all day long. Our daughter always gets so bad that her hands bleed, and she needs to use products to keep moisture in her skin. This was the first year in a very long time that this didn't happen.

In addition to our skin staying healthy through the winter months, our hardwood floors seemed to enjoy the added moisture this humidifier has provided.

However, the best experience of all of this has to be our youngest child's benefits from using Venta-Airwasher. He deals with dog dander allergies, which causes him to cough and sniff, ALL.DAY.LONG. Within the first day of having clean air in our home, his symptoms were completely gone.

We were sold!

There has been few days that we overlooked our new habit of just adding water to this humidifier and purifier in one, and his symptoms were back. We quickly would get it filled back up, and he would stop his sniffling and coughing. He loves it so much that he tries to help us keep it running all the time.

Having these experience, along with enjoying the windows open this week with gorgeous weather and not having the issues with the seasonal allergies that have been plaguing me over the last few years has been a huge joy in our home.

With the help of clean air in our home, I know that I now have a natural way to combat the seasonal allergies before they start invading my home and causing the havoc on my sinus.


Although this has been a sponsored post by Venta-Airwasher, my comments and experience have been shared without bias and exceeded my expectations. I'm certain that your family would find joy in having clean air in your own home, as well. 

 

Preparing a Hope Chest: Reawakening a Tradition

Have you ever heard of a hope chest? I was a mother of three before I have ever heard of the term, and what it really means to have a ‘hope chest'. The moment I learned about it, I was ready to reawaken the tradition with our daughter and we did on her 16th birthday.

Preparing a Hope Chest: Reawakening the Tradition - An old fashion idea or one that builds a legacy of love that will be cherished for a lifetime? | www.joyinthehome.com

Preparing a Hope Chest: Reawakening the Tradition

When I first came across the book, The Hope Chest: A Legacy of Love, I hadn't ever heard of the tradition for a young girl to prepare a hope chest for her own future home.

Being a romantic at heart, as well as a practical woman who loves to give gifts that will last a long time, this concept of preparing a hope chest appealed to me immediately.

At the time when I shared the idea with my husband, he thought it was a great idea for our daughter's 16th birthday that was approaching. He would have loved to create a hope chest on his own, but the time wasn't available to us, but looking back, I really wish we had made the decision to have my husband hand craft one for her.

At the time of us giving the hope chest to our daughter, she was still in that awkward stage of not feeling much like a lady, although she knew she strongly desired to be a wife and mother. Part of her problem at that time was that she really didn't enjoy the work in the kitchen, although she had great skills for cooking and baking.

What we didn't expect when we gifted her with her own hope chest was that her interest of all things home would ignite because of the gift.

She immediately started finding things in her room that were important to her. Things that she would want to hand down to her own daughters one day, like her American Girl doll, America Girl ornaments, her favorite books and more.

Once she got the feel of the meaning of her hope chest, her heart changed and she wanted to start collecting things that would fill her home. She started filling the hope chest with things that belonged to me that I wanted to offer to her, items she purchased on her own and things that were gifts to her for many years since then.

It was during that time, that she even started her own cookbook! She would ask my friends for recipes of things that they made that she really liked, and she would add them to her personal cookbook. She still uses that same one today!

Today, as she is in her early 20's, her hope chest is full and she is waiting for the man that will capture her heart. I'm so happy that we took an old fashion tradition, and turned it into a legacy of love for our daughter. I know you would love the tradition, as much as we have.


If you liked this post, you would also like, Top 10 Gifts for Girls

Top 10 Gifts for Girls - Ideas for all year long! | www.joyinthehome.com

 

 

How to Get Rid of the Stomach Bug

We all dread the horrible stomach bug, because we know that when one of your family members get it, it will make its way through the whole family. It doesn't have to be that way. I would love to share how to get rid of the stomach bug at the first sign, and even help others not get it themselves.

How to Get Rid of the Stomach Bug - This natural remedy works fast. | www.joyinthehome.com

How To Get Rid of the Stomach Bug

We all dread the stomach bug the most out of any sickness that can be past from one person to the next. It can leave a family so exhausted, and overflowing with laundry for weeks.

For over 10 years, I have been using the same natural remedy to get rid of the stomach bug, and often times we used it as a preventative to just keep it away when we know that we have been around someone that came down with it.

The natural remedy is as simple as chamomile tea and raw honey.

Let me share why it works, and almost immediately…

Chamomile is an herb that has been referred to as the ‘gardener's physician'. It earned this nickname because when planted in a garden that has been producing ill results, the chamomile plant seems to heal the problem and allows for a healthy garden to grow. It does the same to the gut.

Chamomile has been known to calm an upset stomach, and aid in relaxation.

Next, you also need raw honey that hasn't been processed. My favorite brand that I have used for these 10 years is Really Raw Honey.

Here is how raw honey works…

Raw honey is an antibiotic, and is full of good bacteria.

When taken without processing, the good bacteria in raw honey works to overtake the bad bacteria that is causing the upset stomach, and leads to the stomach bug with either vomiting or diarrhea. The more good bacteria a gut has the better. The good bacteria will literally kill off the bad bacteria.

Explaining the good bacteria as soldiers or a super hero and bad bacteria as a bad guy or villain will help younger children be willing to drink this tea, even if they haven't been willing before.

No wonder these two working together can make such an impact on a stomach bug and bring back health before it goes through the whole house hold.

Here is how to make this natural remedy for your own family…

Bring water to a boil. Then steep a chamomile tea bag in a cup of the boiling water for 5-10 minutes with a cover over the cup for the best results. I use this brand with success.

Once the tea has cooled down to room temperature, add the raw honey. Stir it and drink it quickly.

Note: Adding raw honey when the tea is too hot will destroy the medicinal properties in honey, causing it to be sweetened tea without any power for the gut.

If the stomach bug has already caused someone to vomit or have diarrhea, I will always boil a whole pot of water, steep it with chamomile tea  (1 tea bag for every cup of tea the water will provide, usually 8-10) and pour it in this coffee thermos so I can easily and quickly serve my family a cup of this natural remedy. This has been such a stress relieve when it hits us all at the same time or in the middle of the night, because I can take it with me to where I need to serve it.

In our home, once someone has vomited or had diarrhea, and we know that something is going around, I will have each of us take a cup and it is the last we see of it.


If you liked this post, you would also like 5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System

5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System - Who wants sick kids? No one does! These 5 ways are simple and effective to strengthening your child's immune system. | www.joyinthehome.com

 

How to Treat a Child’s Cold Naturally

We hate it when our child gets sick, especially when they are so little, and they just can't tell us what isn't feeling good to them. Finding ways to treat a child's cold naturally has always been how we like to do things in our home, but often times, the natural remedies aren't easily understood or easily accessible.

How to Treat A Child's Cold Naturally - Learn how to naturally treat your child's cold and build their immune system at the same time. | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Treat a Child's Cold Naturally

Helping a child fight a cold can be daunting, especially at night time, because they can't sleep well with coughing and wanting to breathe through their nose that is now stuffed up. Just knowing a few things that will help you to treat a child's cold naturally is all that you will need to do it easier.

There are a few things that we do in our home to help them through this sickness, and even shorten it all together.

Use Natural Cough Syrups

Cough Syrups are so effective in helping reduce coughing, however using the right kind of cough syrup that is naturally made and helps strengthen the immune system is very important as well. It can also shorten the duration of the cold and will help fight off any further germs that may come in contact to your child during that time, when their immune system is already lower.

We love using Maty's Organic Cough Syrup for our children, and have used Maty's Healthy Products for over 8 years. Not only is this cough syrup USDA certified to be 100% organic, but it contains 10 immune boosting whole-food ingredients that have no drug interactions and are completely safe for children 1 years old and older.  It is also dairy-free, gluten-free and wheat-free for those needing to avoid these for their child's dietary concerns.

I love how quick and effective this cough syrup has been for our children, and knowing that it has no side-effects, makes it easy for this mom to just pull out of our medicine cabinet and give our child a dose when we are helping to treat a cold naturally.

Use a Vapor Rub

I have always been a vapor rub fan for treating a common cold, but many of the products on the market are not meant for children. So, when I saw that Maty's Healthy Products manufactured a product for children, I bought it right away and began to use it on our children when they needed it.

The Maty's All Natural Vapor Rub is for children 2 years old and older and is petroleum-free, paraben-free and chemical-free. Moms love that, don't we!

The All Natural Vapor Rub is made with all natural ingredients, and additional benefits from healthy oils that make this product gluten-free, dairy-free, wheat-free, and safe for vegetarians as well as diabetics.

You can rub it on their chest for immediate relief, or when using it at the start of symptoms, just rub it on their feet and then put socks on.

They even have a similar product called Baby Chest Rub for children 3 months through 2 years of age.

How to Treat Child's Cold - Maty's Healthy Products | www.joyinthehome.com

Use Warm Steam

There is something amazing about the power of steam to a child that is congested with a cold. We treat a child's cold naturally by allowing them to either sit in warm water or relax with their pillow and a blanket on the bathroom floor while one of us takes a hot shower. This allows the steam of the shower to assist in breaking up any congestion.

We love how easy it is to use Maty's Healthy Products for our children's needs and love seeing new products being developed all the time, like their Natural Cough Syrup Nighttime for Children.

I absolutely love how simple and easy to implement these three things can be for our family, and it really helps to keep our family functioning even when the youngest one doesn't feel very good.

This post has been sponsored by Maty's Healthy Products because I know how much my readers love learning about good things. 


 

You may also like to read 5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System

5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System - Who wants sick kids? No one does! These 5 ways are simple and effective to strengthening your child's immune system. | www.joyinthehome.com

5 Ways to Strengthen a Child’s Immune System

Who enjoys it when their child gets sick? No one does! When our youngest was a baby, his immune system was horrible and he caught everything. This all stemmed from him having a health issue that caused him not to be able to get into a good sleep, and it lowered his immune system. I would love to share with you these ways to strengthen a child's immune system, naturally and effectively.

5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System - Who wants sick kids? No one does! These 5 ways are simple and effective to strengthening your child's immune system. | www.joyinthehome.com

5 Ways to Strengthen a Child's Immune System

When you are a parent, you cringe when you see the first signs of your child coming down with something, especially if you have multiple children because when one of them catches it, they all catch it. Having a plan of attack, before the germs attack, is always the best strategy for parenting.

Anytime, one of these ways weren't followed, I could be sure that one of my children would pick up something and bring it into the home for a round of sickness that could keep us down for a week or more, depending on the type of sickness it was.

SLEEP

We all need a good night's sleep to stay healthy. However, children need around 10-12 hours of sleep each night to keep their immune systems strong and healthy. This is one thing that I have always been so thankful to be able to provide to our children through their homeschooling years, because whenever their sleeping hours are messed up, and they aren't getting much more than 8 hours of sleep, they are bound to get sick and quickly.

The best hours for children and adults to be in a deep sleep are between the 10 PM and 2 AM hours.

Sleep isn't just good for those who are sick, but it is a great way to keep from getting sick in the first place.

Need help with getting your kids to sleep better? Give the Counting Sheep Essential Oil for Kids a try!

WATER

Hydrating is so important for all people, and for children who are growing, it is very important as well, since all their cells need water to stay healthy.

For this reason, our children didn't grow up on having juice, milk or any other beverage on a daily basis, but instead, they normally would only drink water throughout the entire day.

Of course, there were times when we would allow for a small cup of juice or milk, but we restricted all soda for their growing years to not only help with their immune system but their overall health.

EXERCISE

Moving the body for a minimum of 30 minutes a day is a great way to build a strong immune system for children and adults.

Some great ways to get your child to be active every day are bike riding, roller skating, jumping on the trampoline, walking on a treadmill or elliptical machine, swimming, playing tag or just running.

Making it a family focused fitness and moving together for overall health improvement for your whole family is a great way to build a great habit for all your family's health.

Sometimes when kids begin using muscles that haven’t used much, they can develop soreness, just like adults. Give Muscle Sooth Essential Oil for kids a try!

LIMIT SUGAR

Sugar is one of the best way for anyone to lower their immune system, and it is in everything these days.  Limit sugar can be easier if you eliminate all drinks that include it, and replace it with water.

One of the ways that I got my children on my side when working on limiting sugar is teaching them how to read food labels and what it all meant in their way of thinking. I did this by teaching them that FOUR GRAMS OF SUGAR is the same as a TEASPOON OF SUGAR.

They were really surprised by how much sugar is in some of their favorite foods, and with just that knowledge alone, they helped me work on making better health choices for our whole family. They would often do math in the store to figure out just how many teaspoons of sugar per serving (and some servings are smaller than what they were eating during a helping) they would be eating if we purchased that item.

Cereals are one of the first places that I would recommend teaching this knowledge because it is appalling how much sugar is in popular brands.

Help support your child's immune system with Immunity Essential Oil for Kids!

WHOLEFOOD SUPPLEMENT

Having a prevention plan in place is always a great idea! Our family has trusted Juice Plus+ to fill in the gaps of our nutrition for over 10 years.

The Children's Health Study made it amazing for when our oldest children were young, and allowed both of them to take the Juice Plus+ chewables for four years while in the study.


If you enjoyed this post, you may also enjoy 5 Ways to Eliminate Constipation

5 Ways to Eliminate Constipation - Constipation is hard on a child, but these natural ways to eliminate them will help ease the pain and return them to normal. | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Empower Your Husband to Be the Head of Your Home

I cringe to think of the early years of our marriage and how I stood in the way of my husband being the head of our home. My strong personality, coupled with his easy-go personality, were the starting point of what our marriage had to endure from the beginning.

Although I grew up in the church, and attended a private school, the concept of the man being the head of the home wasn't anything that I really thought about, until I heard about it in a small group setting of women in a Bible study. I remember when I honestly asked myself, “Is your husband the head of your home?”  I knew the answer was… ‘no‘. If you are like me, you may be looking for ways to learn how to empower your husband to be the head of your home.

How to Empower Your Husband to Be the Head of the Home | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Empower Your Husband to Be the Head of Your Home

Once I found out about the Biblical structure of the home, and how God appointed man to be the head of his home, I wanted it with all of my heart. I prayed for my husband to begin to walk in this position, and take over the leading of our family.

I put all the responsibility of this desire on my husband and expected him to change, step up and take control, even without him understanding the concept and what it may look like to him.

I have to admit that this revelation was so important to me that I overlooked how important my husband was to me and treated him so poorly anytime I didn't feel that he measured up to the picture of what it meant in my mind. I became a silly woman that was tearing down her own home!

Here is what I did when I realized what I was doing, and how I changed my attention to empower my husband to be the head of our home:

Ask his opinion before sharing mine – I find that when I have respected his opinion before mine that it is close to my own. When our opinions differ, which does happen from time to time, he is more willing to hear my suggestions because I respected his role as the head of our home, allowing him to respect my role as ‘his help meet'. 

Listen longer and speak less – I can't believe how much I have dominated our discussions in the past.  I found that once I let my husband speak more in our relationship, the more we grew as a couple and our desires became more of the same.

Allow him to make mistakes – I'm giving my husband the privilege of being human, which means knowing he is going to make a mistake, as I do, from time to time. I realized that it is through the mistakes that we both grow.

Love him when he makes mistakes – When he does makes mistakes, I need to love him through it, as he does with me in my errors. I'm not sure why people think that others are the only ones that make mistakes.

Allow him to speak for your family when in a couple setting – Years ago, I heard an older woman say ‘when she realized that her speaking for the family was going against her prayers for her husband to be the head of the home', I started using invisible duck tape when we were around couples that were asking us questions about our family.  In holding my voice, my husband found his and that was a huge step in building his confidence as the head of our home. (This was truly one of the hardest things that I had to discipline myself to do)


How to Empower Your Husband to be the Head of Your Home - Tips that will help you, help your husband.

If you found this post helpful,  you may also like this post, How to Rebuild Trust Once It Is Broken

5 Ways to Rebuild Trust Once It Is Broken - Trust can be rebuilt, but it takes both to work to make it happen. | www.Joyinthehome.com

How To Prepare Your Children to Stay Home Alone

Do you ever wonder how people leave their children home alone? As a mother of four, with over 21 years of experience, I have had to do this quite a few times. My first time doing it, I felt like my heart was going to jump out of my chest, and every imaginable thing that could happen was playing in my head. With experience, I found that the key to doing this successfully is about how to prepare your children to stay home alone, and these tips will help you learn how to do this naturally and with less stress.

How to Prepare Your Children to Stay Home Alone - Be sure your kids are ready before you leave them alone. | www.joyinthehome.com

How to Prepare Your Children to Stay Home Alone

That very first time that we left our children at home was a spare of the moment situation that my husband wanted to take me for a ride on his new motorcycle. I told him that I couldn't because of the children, and he insisted that our oldest could handle the situation for 30 minutes, and my husband can be very persuasive, so I gave in.

Prior to leaving, I made sure they knew not to answer the door or the phone until we came back. The three of them, the oldest being a very mature 12 year old, all agreed and watched us drive away from the window.

Immediately, as we drove away, my mind went through all kinds of things that could have happened in my absence and the stress was building. My husband was having a wonderful time, as I was imagining neighbors turning us in to the CPA for child neglect, much like the scene that Allison played out in the Mom's Night Out movie.

Our first trip only lasted for about 10 minutes, and to my horror, my mother-in-law and brother-in-law came while we were gone and my children wouldn't answer the door, passing their first test with flying colors, however my in-laws could hear them inside the house the whole time.

I knew that there was some preparation I needed to do to prepare our children to stay home alone, because my husband made it clear that we were meant to take many of these rides on the weekend.

Focus On Their Interaction

One of the most stressful things about leaving your children home alone is how they interact with each other. If you have a lot of strife in your home while you are there, it will only increase in your absence. I know this for a fact because my own brother would get physically mean when my parents were gone, and because of this experience, we didn't permit our children to hit one another, ever.

We also didn't allow our children to boss each other, as they are equals, regardless of their ages. We instructed them to encourage each other if one of them were struggling with obedience or their responsibilities, but they were not allowed to usurp authority over each other.

This made it easier when we would leave them home alone, but we still needed our oldest to be ‘in charge', so we had them memorize the verse, “Obey those that have the charge or rule over you.” (Hebrews 13:17) We would have our oldest be the one in charge, each time, and she tended to be bossy on normal days, so we needed to remind her that it is better to serve than be served, to teach her humility.

Set Guidelines for What Is Allowed During Your Absence

Having a list of things that they can and can't do while they are home alone will help a lot. From what they can watch, play, eat or call should all be on this list.

I learned this the hard way!

Many years ago, while I was speaking at a local MOPS meeting, I left my children home to do their school work and knowing that they have done this before, I didn't expect any issues but left my phone on just in case there was an emergency.

Right in the middle of my talk, my cell phone rings. It was home, and my heart raced! I apologized to the group of ladies, and answered it, to only find out that my 12 year old son wanted a mid-morning snack and wanted to be sure it was okay. I heard my 14 year old daughter in the back ground telling him that “I told you not to call her! You are going to be in trouble.”

My daughter was completely right!

Create a Family Phone Book

You never know what may happen while you are gone, and your children are left home by themselves, so having a phone book with numbers to neighbors, close friends and emergency numbers in a place where it can always be found is a tool that you may already have and use.

We went further with this and programmed important numbers into our phone, so they can easily dial it, in case of an emergency. This helped when our son had a febrile seizer and my older children had to help us get help immediately.

Keep Your Children Accountable

I can't stress how important it is to keep your children accountable the moment you return home. Always take at least a few minutes to ask each of them how things went, and if you need to deal with any issues. Having this accountability will allow all the other preparations to stay in place, and will allow all your children to know that the system in place is there for a purpose and you will ensure it stays that way.

Enforce any consequences immediately, and remind those that had issues that the next time you leave them home, you may add consequences if the same issues arise in your absence.

Don't forget to praise your children for following the guidelines and working together as a family!

Once our family had these preparations in place, my husband and I had more freedom to take advantage of babysitting aged children, and went on more dates with each other, and our time away grew as our trust in our children proved itself.

I still have crazy thoughts that come into my mind of all the possible things that could go wrong, but I will have to write about that another day.

I would love to hear any tips that has helped you prepare your children to stay home alone!