Baseball & Optimism

Ever since I was a kid I have loved the sport of baseball. My brother and I would spend hours upon hours playing MLB 2000. (Here is a clip of some gameplay from YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_PwkpvuVXIE those graphics take me back to the good ‘ol days!) After we would turn off our PlayStation 1, we would head outside and imitate the iconic batting stances of Sammy Sosa and Gary Sheffield. From then, my brother declared his fandom for the Cleveland Indians and I gained my never-ending passion for the Chicago Cubs. Life was simple then and our love for the game was pure.

Years passed and my brother and I played on local teams. Neither of us were very good, but we enjoyed the experience. Once I got into high school, my love of the game changed.

In my Freshman year of high school my team went 0-17. Although there was some natural talent on our team, many of my teammates had inflated egos and would brag about how they “almost hit a home run” or how...

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Three Tips to Developing Effective Routines with Children & Toddlers

parenting sleep coaching Sep 13, 2021

Many parents are trying to get into the swing of their kids going back to school and adjusting to that routine during this busy time. But routines are just as important for infants and toddlers. 

Why are Routines important?

Kaplan Early Learning explained that “routines influence infants and toddlers' social, emotional, and cognitive development”. Children don’t get to choose much in their day. We tell them when they can get out of bed, we make them breakfast, we drive them to school, etc. Children often get caught up in something like having 2 specific stuffed animals at bedtime because they know it is something they can choose and control. Routines help children know what is coming and what to expect. Infants and toddlers who are in a routine act out less and throw fewer tantrums. They get to be in charge of smaller decisions because they know what is going to happen that day.

 

How to create a routine?

Creating a new routine can seem daunting at first,...

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5 Tips to Teaching your Kids

Was there color when you grew up?

 

When I was about 6 years old I turned to my mom and asked her, “Mom, was there color when you were growing up?”

 

My question was innocent, my mother laughed and said, “Of course, Justin, there has always been color.” 

 

“Then why was there no color in “The Wizard of Oz?”, I replied.

 

She explained to me about technicolor and a little bit of the history of television.

I often ponder our conversation as I think about parents’ role in the learning and development of children. I feel very grateful that I had a mother who took the time to help me make sense of the world around me. Now, as I am a parent, I eagerly look forward to opportunities to teach my kids. Whether it is helping them learn to talk or teaching them basic math, teaching is one of my favorite pastimes.

 

Here are 5 tips to teaching kids:

 

  1. Focus on them 

Their learning, not your time or your...

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Things you MUST DO before choosing a preschool

family parenting Aug 09, 2021

This fall, my two children will be attending preschool for the first time. Searching for the right childcare/preschool program was a really difficult process for me. It was really easy to get caught up in finding the one that is the closest or the cheapest. But there is much more that I needed to consider when choosing a place for my children. In this blog I am going to cover some of the most important things to consider and questions to ask when choosing a place for your little ones.

The first is taking a good look at the teachers and staff that work there. Ask about the teachers and their qualifications, how long have they worked there, what is the staff turnover? It is normal to have employee turnover, but a lot of turnover can be an indicator that they don’t enjoy working there or they get burnt out with the kids etc. It is also unsettling for a 2 or 3 year old to have a different teacher each month. 

Next, look at the basic discipline and guidance that they use. At...

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Core Values & Mom Guilt

parenting relationships Jul 13, 2021

Growing up with a stay at home mom, I always envisioned a more “traditional” life with myself being at home with my children while my husband went off to work. This was my dream. As we have started Crib Coaching and Bertelsen Education, I did not realize how much I would enjoy the challenge of starting and growing a business with my husband. However, as my lifelong dream of being a stay at home mom and my professional goals have changed, often I feel a conflict inside myself. I know that neither being a stay at home mom nor running a business is “bad” or “better than the other”.  For years I have felt uneasy. During the pandemic as I have tried to balance both, I have come to realize I can’t. In this blog I am going to talk about mom guilt, working from home burnout,  and how to feel confident in the choices you make as a mother and a professional.

Mom Guilt

Mom guilt is “that pervasive feeling of not doing enough as a...

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How to Teach Your Kids to Do Hard Things

I started training for a half marathon today. Let me tell you, getting ready to run 13.1 miles is hard. It requires dedication, grit, and stamina. Today we ran for 20 minutes and as we started along the running path, our 3 year old, Ross told us that he wanted to get out and run. This is normal. Sometimes when we go for a walk, he runs and gets ahead of us and then comes back. But this time, we were running as well. We had run about 1/10 of a mile and Ross turned around and said, “ I want to ride.” We put him in the stroller and continued our run. 

 

As I mentioned, Ross is only three so it’s no surprise that running 20 minutes without stopping would be too much for him. But as he gets older, how do I teach him to push through the tough things he will encounter in his life? 

 

Here are 3 tips

1. Allow natural consequences: If your kid doesn't perform as well as they would like to on a test, game, or performance, and they slacked off in their...

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Creating Space for Fathers

Men have an essential role in society and in the home. Many feel social pressure to put efforts into work because of the influence of peers, learned behavior, past experiences, and expectations from their partners. Throughout the course of the pandemic, the traditional roles within the home have changed. As the pandemic comes to a close how can we keep positive change and purge out negative habitual patterns? We must continue to create space for fathers: in our marriages, in our homes, and in our society.

Importance of Men and Fathers:

Fathers are often portrayed as the bumbling idiot on TV. They are not capable of keeping up with their wife or their children. This myth not only makes men the butt of jokes, but also teaches young boys what to expect as they grow up. Contrary to what media shows in children’s movies and reality TV, men want to be involved in children’s lives. 

Studies show that fathers who are involved in their child’s life in every age group...

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Surviving Baby Sleep During the Holidays

parenting May 13, 2021

The holidays are approaching, which can bring a lot of festivities, excitement, and family time. Trees are going up, strings of lights are being plugged in, turkeys are being cooked, and presents are being wrapped! This can be such a joyous time to spend with family and loved ones. Even though the holidays bring some of the best memories, it can also be a time of stress and chaos due to all of the planning, the cooking, or the travelling. There’s so much to worry about during the holidays, and baby sleep shouldn’t be one of them! Here are 6 tips to follow to take the stress off of baby sleep so you can enjoy the holiday season. 

1. Be Flexible

As much as you would like to keep your baby’s schedule perfect, it is likely that it won’t be exact during the holidays. For example, you may not be home during naptime or bedtime. Perhaps you are hosting a family dinner, and your guests have overrun Baby’s bedroom. It is important to stay flexible. Recognize...

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Pacifiers -- A Positive or a Pitfall?

parenting May 13, 2021

It is common that a pacifier is a necessity when it comes to preparing for baby. Along with diapers, wipes, and bottles, new parents stock up on pacifiers as well.  There is debate about which one will work best, what size to buy, and of course which one is the trendiest. But do they really deserve the attention they are receiving? There are many benefits to using a pacifier, but there are also some potential drawbacks as well. Let’s look at a few.

Pacifier Positives:

Soothes a fussy baby:

  • Babies are born with the natural instinct to suck. Sucking on a pacifier creates a soothing sensation that helps calm a baby down. According to Dr. Harvey Karp and research found in his book The Happiest Baby on the Block, sucking on a pacifier can lower your baby’s heart rate, blood pressure, and stress levels. This is a great comfort tool to offer after shots, exams at a doctor’s office, or other types of discomfort. 

Eases travel:

  • Sucking on a pacifier can be a...
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Missing out on the Rain

parenting May 13, 2021

As a 5 year old I found out I had amblyopia, I was almost blind out of my left eye. I wore glasses and an eye patch over my “good” eye so that my “bad” eye would have to work harder. This helped a little as a child, but after 3 years there wasn’t much progress and we decided to stop wearing the patch and to adjust to life.

Cosmetically people could not even tell, my eyes looked normal and I grew up playing soccer and being a pretty good student. When I was 17, my best friend had dyslexia and was going to vision therapy. I had never heard of vision therapy and she explained that they not only strengthen your eyes, but they teach your eyes to work together. 

This was different than anything I had previously done or heard of. After much thought, my parents took me in to get tested. I found out that I did not have depth perception and a reading comprehension level of a 3rd grader. I didn’t believe it because I played soccer and I thought I had...

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