Fun Ways To Get You and Your Little Ones Outside

Fun Ways To Get You and Your Little Ones Outside

Our weekends mostly consist of being outside all day long. If the sun is out so are we and it will be this way until the clocks turn back.

Studies have shown that all we need is at least 20 minutes a day outside. Nature came be healing and beneficial for the mind and body. Benefits include:

  • Improves mood — Researchers have found that nature simply makes us happy. Anxiety, depression and anger are notably decreased after spending time outdoors.
  • Improves focus — Studies show that both adults and children who have difficulties focusing or controlling impulses are better able to concentrate after being in nature. The natural world allows our brains to take a break from all that mentally drains us, and even reduces symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). (Source from Sharp.com)

Sometimes it can be hard to get little ones to go outside, so here are some fun ways to inspire them to ditch the electronics and get outside!

1000 Hours Outside

1000 Hours Outside is a global movement designed for any age child (or adult) and any environment. The entire purpose of 1000 Hours Outside is to attempt to match nature time with screen time. They provide challenges, trackers and activity ebooks for the whole family.

The Best Homemade Bubble Recipe

Just realized you are out of bubbles? No need to worry with this easy recipe with ingredients you most likely have on your home already! Head to Caitlin Houston Blog for this recipe!

DIY Children’s Garden

Create a garden for your little one that includes a ton of imaginative play! While growing plants of your choice, your little one can decorate with rocks, stones and figurines of their choice! Head to Mid Morning Mama to see how they did theirs!

DIY Backyard Binoculars

This fun craft is an oldie but goodie of The Robins Nest! We made these last year and were a hit when we went outside. They are even great for rainy days and want to do some hunting your home.

Go On A Nature Walk Scavenger Hunt

Don’t forget these printables on your next nature walk! You have the choice of drawing your own finds or circling the images you see on your walk. It gives your little ones a reason to look around them while on their adventure.

Watercolor Painting Outside

Create a mess free masterpiece while getting inspiration painting outside. These watercolor paint pens are ideal for your kids painting outside! Check out The Very Best Baby Stuff for more info!

DIY Glow Jars

How cool are these fun diy glow jars from Our Tiny Nest? This easy activity is great for little ones who enjoy warm nights outside.

Seed Bombs

Our Tiny Nest is also sharing these awesome seed bomb diys. Just in time for Earth Day these little earth seed bombs will plant into beautiful wild flowers. Go check it out!

Outdoor Games

There are so many fun games to play outside! Check out Chronicles of a Momtessorian for some fun game ideas.

35 Additional Outdoor Activities

There are so many reasons to get outside and have fun so check out Happily Trista for 35 additional activities to do outside!

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Easy Last Minute Easter Ideas

Easy Last Minute Easter Ideas

Yes you are reading that right, last minute Easter ideas because it is only a few days away!

Don’t ask yourself how this happened and how to it! I am sharing some easy last minute Easter ideas to get your little ones excited for this spring holiday.

They are easy enough that some of these activities can be done at home, or for very cheap! Check them out below.

1. Easter Bunny Footprints

Print out this free template and carefully cut out the bunny feet to make a stencil. Place stencil on the floor and sprinkle powdered sugar. Do this a few time to make a trail.

2. Free Spring Printables

When you sign up for my newsletter, you will get a set of spring themed printabbles including Easter pennants, toppers and coloring pages.

3. Naturally Dye Eggs With Onion Skin

Coloring eggs has never been this fun! Head to my previous post on how to color eggs with onion skin!

4. Easter Bunny Bait

Mix some dried oats, colored sprinkles and anything else you want to add to sprinkle for the Easter Bunny when he comes at night.

5. Dollar Store Easter Basket

Head to your local dollar store and stock up on the ultimate Easter basket! Everything you see hear is from Dollar Tree or Target Dollar Spot. You can add snacks, bubbles, Playdough, sippy cups and more! Also how cute are these sunglasses? I decided to glue some letter beads to customize them.

6. Jelly Beans in the Toilet

Throw some jelly beans in the toilet and even add some green and purple food coloring. Add the note for the Easter bunny saying they forgot to flush!

Pin This for Later!

Some blogger friends and I are teaming up to share some fun Easter Basket ideas! Follow our blog links for more inspiration!

Kimmy

Ally

Amy

Lexie

Food Dye Macaroni Plus Free Printable

Food Dye Macaroni Plus Free Printable

Macaroni is one of the basic food groups in our house but when you can play with it, it makes things 10 times better!

I always had thing with sensory bins because I had fear of all the mess it would make but after months of quarantine I let things go.

Macaroni has such fun shapes and when you find unique ones at this Dollar Tree you gotta act fast because you never know when you will see them again!

I grabbed some food dye as well at Dollar Tree and decided to make a bunch of colored macaroni for a fun activity.

If you can’t find these at your local Dollar Tree you can snag these materials here!

I separated the shapes and put them each in a small container. I added about 4 drops of each color and a tablespoon of alcohol.

I closed the lid and had Franco shake it up until all a macaroni was covered in dye.

We laid them all out on a paper towel and let them dry, about 15 minutes.

I created this rainbow printable just in time for St. Patrick’s day and we used the macaroni to create a colorful rainbow.

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Moving and Working Remote During Changing Times

Moving and Working Remote During Changing Times

The work landscape has changed dramatically this past year and more than ever, companies are hiring people to work remotely. According to FlexJobs survey, 65% of respondents report that they want to work fully remote post-pandemic, and 31% want a hybrid remote work environment. As a total 96% desire some form of remote work.

It has been reported that with working at home there are fewer interruptions, more focused time, quieter work environment, more comfortable workspace, and not being involved in office politics. Another benefit is that people who work are realizing that they have more real estate choices and opportunities.

As full time working parents, working remote has provided my husband and I flexibility while taking care of Franco. It is not easy, but we are thankful to have that option. The layout of our house is not ideal for remote work since there is a lot of open space and not much room for an office but we do our best to make it work.

I was talking to my husband the other night and we talked about what we would do if we were to buy a house today. We talked about how we would want more office space and more of an ideal location than where we are now. We used a mortgage calculator to compare and and get a better estimate if this is something we are seriously considering. According to Home Ownership Matters buyers want enclosed or flexible spaces within their home that can serve as a private home office. Homes that offer an additional bedroom or a finished basement or attic space are often in greater demand.

Because of working remotely, we are spending more time in our homes and it’s changing the way we look and the criteria we use when we shop for a new one. I have had friends move to another state this past year because their job would allow it. They finally got the dream they always wanted by leaving Upstate, New York and moving to the beach in North Carolina.

According to flexjobs.com these states have the most work-from-home-friendly counties:

  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Colorado
  • Georgia
  • Florida
  • North Carolina

The pandemic and remote working went hand-in-hand in changing the way people conduct business and live their lives. The pandemic didn’t force us to embrace remote work; it accelerated our embrace of being a remote worker.

As more companies decide to extend remote work opportunities in the coming months, and as more people realize they’re not tied down to their locale for their jobs, the residential real estate market is likely to continue its shift. If you’re ready to hit the road, do your due diligence to make sure moving is your best all-around option.

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My Psychiatrist Dumped Me a Week Before the World Shut Down

My Psychiatrist Dumped Me a Week Before the World Shut Down


After being on different trials of medication since my son Franco was born, I thought I finally found the one that would work. The past year had many transitions and struggles which unfortunately led me to feel that it was not working for me. My anxiety and depression increased and found it hard to complete simple tasks. 
In agreement with my therapist, I decided to call my psychiatrist and make a sooner appointment than already scheduled. I was lucky to get in the next day and just assumed it had to do with a cancellation opening. 


I went in hopeful that things were going to change moving forward and this was the tool I needed to help me get back on track. I sit down in my doctor’s office and noticed something wasn’t right. There were no pictures on the walls including all of his degrees and licenses. Before I could say anything he said ” So, you are here for your last appointment?” 
I just stared at him and barely got the word “What?” out.


”Oh, you didn’t know?” 

He asked insincere, “Someone was supposed to call you and let you know I am no longer practicing at this location and you are here today to prepare a discharge plan.”


”How would I know? No one called me!” I raised my voice out of fear and anxiousness.

” I just called yesterday and no one said anything to me.”


”Oh,” he said quickly, “well I moved to a different practice and you are welcomed to join me there, otherwise I can provide you with a list of providers you can try.”


There were two problems though, his new practice was too far of a drive for me and the list he provided was so old and unreliable, some providers weren’t even practicing anymore. 
I had such a look of disgust on my face I couldn’t even say anything. 
He told me I didn’t need to decide now and he would provide me with one more refill of my current medication. I explained to him the medication I was taking were not helping and possibly making things worse and I did not want to continue them anymore.


”Well, if that is the case then I think it would be best to part ways and for you to see someone new.” He didn’t even look me in the eye and continued to type on his laptop. 

At this point I realized my psychiatrist of 8 years has given up on me. I am too complex to fix and he just didn’t want to try anymore. 
I quietly nodded my head in agreement and didn’t listen to anything else he had to say. I left feeling pretty hopeless and hurt. The first person to ever give up on me was my own psychiatrist.


Taking this as a blessing in disguise, I called and emailed over 20 providers the next day and was able to land an appointment with a practitioner who was highly recommended by a friend. I was able to get in by the end of the week.


I was re evaluated and was put on some brand new medications I have never tried before. I was nervous but excited to make another appointment in four weeks to see how I was doing. 


A week after my initial appointment, a pandemic has been declared and a national shutdown started to begin.



Schools and businesses have closed, and I was forced to work from home while trying to take care of my son. Fear was instilled into us and grief started to take over all while trying to live a new life. 
I never thought over the past month I would lose a loved one and not be able to say goodbye, try to explain to my four year old why he can’t go to school anymore and work from home acting like nothing has changed. 


I would keep seeing articles to do yoga and drink smoothies to help reduce stress or watch webinars on ways to reduce stress which included doing yoga and drinking smoothies. 
Honestly, it only increased my stress.


Feeling like a failure as a mom, wife and employee, my guilt was sky high and so was my anxiety. I had no idea if my medication that I just started to take was even working. 
Thankfully, I continued to work with my therapist and prescriber through virtual therapy and I feel comfort in that.

I have felt a lot of anger and resentment these past 10 months, but I have no one to blame. I want to blame my psychiatrist for doing this and the system for allowing this, but for me I saw it as a blessing in disguise.

Unfortunately, this is not the case for everyone.

Resources during this time of uncertainty: Crisis Text Line-Text HOME to 741741 to connect with a Crisis Counselor.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline– Call 1-800-273-8255

Postpartum Support International-HelpLine: As always their HelpLine is open, and available for calls from moms, dads, and families, or anyone who may be looking for resources to help a loved one.Call 1-800-944-4773 (4PPD), English and EspañolText a Message: 503-894-9453 (English) or 971-420-0294 ( Español)

Be kind, be hopeful and for the love of God, psychiatrists, please don’t give up on your patients.

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