Archive | March 1st, 2013

Do-it-Yourself Gifts Kids Can Make

Gifts are a delight for toddlers. They do not just love receiving them but they also want to make them. Having your toddler make presents will emphasize the fact that time, kindness and effort are just as precious as store-bought presents. Here are some suggestions for gifts kids can make with a little help from their parents.

Alphabet Crayons

What You Will Need

  • Small, broken or old crayons with the wrappers removed
  • Letter molds
  • Baking sheet


  • Set the oven at 300 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Preheating the oven makes the crayons dissolve faster and more evenly.
  • Break each crayon into tiny pieces and fit them into the letter molds. You can either pile them according to color or mix the crayons together.
  • Place the molds into the baking sheet and then put the sheet into the preheated oven for 10 minutes or until the crayons are fully melted.
  • Take the baking sheet out of the oven and let it cool for a minute or two. Turn the letter mold upside down to pop them out. Be careful not to break them.
  • Wrap them along with a cute notebook in a clear plastic wrapper and tie it up with a ribbon.

Homemade Cards

What You Will Need

  • Blank pieces of paper (can be bond paper, art paper or construction paper)
  • Art Materials (crayons, markers, paint, sponges, buttons, yarns, etc.)
  • Pen
  • Scissors


  • Fold the paper in half horizontally. Trim the edges with scissors until paper is of the same size.
  • Let your toddler decorate it with whatever he wants.
  • Ask your toddler to write a thoughtful message.

Picture Frames

What You Will Need

  • A picture of the person who will receive the gift
  • Plain wooden picture frame
  • Acrylic paint
  • Acrylic varnish
  • Paint brush
  • Foam letters
  • Glue


  • Pick a color that complements the photo and the design.
  • Paint the picture frame with a base coat of white so the color will stand out better.
  • Let it dry and then coat with acrylic varnish.
  • Once dry, glue foam letters to the frame.
  • Set aside to dry again and then insert the photo.

Ink Blot T-shirt

What You Will Need

  • Plan t-shirt
  • Fabric paint
  • Poster board or cardboard
  • Scissors


  • Put the t-shirt over the poster board or cardboard.
  • Make a line down the left side of the shirt on the board to create your cutting line.
  • If the board is too big, cut it to make sure it is the same size with the shirt.
  • Take the board out of the shirt and fold it in half, lengthwise. Put the board back in the shirt.
  • Let your toddler paint whatever he likes. Your toddler does not have to follow a pattern.
  • Once done, fold the shirt in half and then carefully open it.
  • Let it dry (only take out the board once the shirt is dry).

Marshmallow Swizzle

What You Will Need

  • 200g marshmallows
  • 4oz chocolate milk
  • Chocolate strands
  • Sprinkles


  • Mash the chocolate into pieces. Place them in a bowl over a pan of boiling water and leave until melted.
  • Dip marshmallows into melted chocolate to coat. Shake off any excess chocolate.
  • Dust marshmallows with chocolate strand and sprinkles to cover marshmallows completely.
  • Put them in the fridge for 30 minutes to set.
  • Wrap them in a small decorative jar.

Letting your toddler make his own gifts is not only fun. It can help boost your toddler’s creative skills and make your toddler realize that gift-giving does not have to be expensive.

Posted in Playtime, Toddler CraftsComments (0)

Dressing A Child – How To Keep Your Toddler From Undressing

You get him dressed, you turn around to grab something and the next thing you know, your toddler is halfway through removing his pants again. Dressing a child can be tricky, especially if he would rather be naked. Here is what you can do to keep your toddler fully covered.

Check The Clothes

One of the most common reasons why toddlers undress themselves is because their clothes are uncomfortable – the material is itchy, the fit might be wrong or they feel too warm. Take time to look through your toddler’s clothes. Discard clothes that are either too small or too big, those that restrict movement, those that are too heavy and thick, clothes made of brocade and nylon and garments with embellishments such as sequins, lace and ruffles. Toddler clothes must be soft and cool to prevent trapping body heat which can make toddlers uneasy.

Go Shopping Together

The next time you visit the mall to buy clothes, take your little one with you. Ask your toddler to pick out a t-shirt or pajama he likes featuring his favorite color or cartoon character. Children are more willing to wear something they have some ownership of. You can also point out pictures or mannequins of children who are dressed so he will be more eager to copy them.

Avoid Too Many Layers of Clothing

Most parents have a tendency to pile the clothing on their toddlers and cover them so tightly they can hardly move. Because of this, toddlers are so eager to get rid of them and as a result, they would rather be naked than dressed in heaps of layers. Dress your toddler in weather-appropriate clothes. If it is hot, then do not make him wear long sleeves and pants. During cold days, just add one layer of clothing to keep him warm.

Say Yes Sometimes

When temperatures and conditions permit, allow your little one to take off his clothes for a period of time. For instance, you can let your toddler go naked around the house for, say, 20 minutes before taking a bath in the morning or before getting dressed. But, do associate it with his daily routine so your toddler knows when and where he can and cannot go naked. This way, if he starts undressing himself while everyone is still eating breakfast, you can say to him “Not yet. You can remove your clothes after breakfast.”.

Do Not Overreact

Try not to make a big deal out of it. If you punish your toddler, act shocked or laugh at him, this will make your child think that this is the way to get your attention and you will only set yourself up for repeat performances. Stand your ground. If he refuses to put his clothes back on, put them on for him. Your toddler might whine or throw a tantrum at first but eventually, he will realize that you are serious and he has no choice but to comply because rules are rules.

Make Removing Clothes A Challenge

If all else fails, you can try making undressing more difficult by putting his clothes on backwards, dressing him in a jumper over the diaper (so it will he harder for him to remove the diaper) or letting him wear clothes with zippers or very tiny buttons at the back.

It is normal for your toddler to remove his clothes. This is his way of exploring his body - how it works and what it looks like. So do not fret. This is just a phase that will wear off in time.

Posted in Parenting, Toddler DisciplineComments (0)

Pets and Children – Simple Pet Chores Any Toddler Can Do

Pets are a great addition to a toddler’s growing up experience. However, the only problem with pets and children is that children do not have the capability to do everything that comes with caring for a pet. Luckily, there are still plenty of ways a toddler can help out. The following are some pet chores any toddler can do.

Food Duty

This is not even considered a chore because toddlers love giving treats to their pets. Ask your toddler to constantly check if there is enough water in your dog’s bowl. Because children believe “more is more”, you might want to supervise your little one at first to prevent your toddler from giving his goldfish an entire bottle of fish food. Have him watch you as you prepare carrots for your rabbit so he knows how much to give. Or, teach him how to measure the pet’s food portion and have him place it in a bowl and feed it to the pet. It is also important that you inform your toddler of the possible dangers that can happen if he gives his pet too much food.

Mess Patrol

Your toddler may need a little prodding with this chore. After all, cleaning up after pets may be the crappiest part of having a pet. But, you can teach your toddler how to scoop out the poop in the pet’s cage, throw the waste and clean or change the bedding. Of course, do not forget to remind him to wash his hands afterwards.

Bathing and Grooming

It is very essential to keep a pet clean and well-groomed especially if they are around toddlers. Ask your little one to help you with bathing and grooming your pet. For instance, your toddler can apply the shampoo while you wash the pet or he can hold the pet during grooming. Once he knows the proper way to bath and groom your pet, he can take over. But do keep a close eye on your toddler and your pet. Toddlers tend to get too excited when doing this task and elicit a not so friendly response from the animal.


Let your toddler come with you when walking the dog. If he is old enough to handle the dog, show him how to hold the leash and have him take a turn. Again, close supervision is necessary.

Playtime Buddy

Pets and children are the best of friends because they love doing the same thing – playing. He can dangle cat toys, teach the dog simple commands like “sit” or “roll” or play fetch with the dog or toss empty toilet paper rolls, a cardboard tube or box into a cage for his guinea pig or gerbil to play in. See to it you emphasize the importance of being gentle when playing with a pet.

Having a pet can give your toddler a sense of responsibility and teach him empathy. However, do bear in mind that the level of responsibility you give to your little one should be fitting to your toddler’s age as well as the temperament of the animal.

Posted in Parenting, Parenting TipsComments (0)

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