Keeping Kids Connected to Nature

Encouraging your children to connect with nature has many benefits for children’s health and development.Connecting kids to nature is a great way to disconnect them from their cell phones, TVs, and other electronic devices. Most kids love to get down and dirty in the great outdoors. If you’re a parent to a foster or adopted child, exploring nature can help you bond and provide a smoother transition for both of you.Physical and Mental HealthInstead of raising a couch potato, take your kids out to plant potatoes. It’s the best way to keep them healthy, both physically and mentally. Being outdoors helps them build a stronger immune system and relieves stress. The sun provides vitamin D, a necessity for keeping your mind and spirit at its best. You’ll notice a child who is cooped up indoors will often seem listless and grumpy. They may simply lack vitamin D and sunshine.Nature also

Signs of Insomnia and How to Help Your New Child Sleep Well

Understanding the causes and potential treatment of insomnia can help parents ensure their children get enough rest. Most children have no problem falling asleep after a day of learning and playing. However, some may have more difficulty getting into dreamland than others.  Recent studies indicate that more than 30% of children are sleep deprived. Apart from having trouble falling asleep, some children also deal with sleep disorders, the most common of which is insomnia. Insomnia varies in severity, and while in some cases it can be corrected at home with a few hacks for better sleep, some forms may require a professional’s help for proper treatment. Here’s how to know if your new child has insomnia and how you can help them cope. Always Cranky, Forgetful, and Tired?Most people associate insomnia with constantly stressed and busy adults, but even children can have difficulties sleeping or staying asleep. If your new

7 Tips to Help Build Your Child’s Writing Skills

Helping foster and adoptive children develop reading skills as young as possible will set them up for future success.For every child, adolescence is marked by constant growth and changes. Personality, emotions, mental aptitude, and interests all emerge and fluctuate. But even in the most favorable conditions, these changes can be challenging for the little ones.  Now imagine adding one other aspect to these changes by being placed under foster care.In the US alone, nearly half a million children enter foster care every year. Various studies have shown that foster children face a unique set of challenges in the learning environment. As a teacher or foster parent, it’s important to understand and learn the best practices and strategies to help these children achieve academic success and ease the stress that comes with the changes they’re going through. One important skill a child needs to build up on, is writing. It takes time

Self-Advocacy in the Adoption Process

Hopeful adoptive parents can take action to increase their chances of getting matched. Tanya F., her husband, and their 8-year-old son began their adoption process of two years in June 2017 by attending a meeting/matching event to gather information about the process and available local children. “We’d been talking about adopting an older child from foster care for several years, and it finally felt like the right time in our lives to jump all in,” she said. “Little did we know what a long journey it would be.”That journey was one, like so many others, spotted with waiting, hoping, and disappointments. Above those things, though, it was one of self-advocacy and action. The adoption world is filled with many interests: the state, the birth family, foster parents, the children themselves, and the professionals trying to assist each of these groups. The more proactive hopeful parents can be, the higher the chances of

How to Help Your Adopted Child Acclimate to Your Family

Adoptive parents can take steps to help their children adjust to a new familyThere’s no better feeling than welcoming a new member to the family. Weddings, births, adoptions: it doesn’t matter. Having a new child enter your life is a special kind of joy. Sweet, right? That doesn’t mean these joyous changes are going to come without their fair share of challenges. If you’ve just adopted a child, you’re probably starting to figure that out. It’s a brave new world, and you want to make sure everything is perfect for the new little miracle in your life.  Here are a few tips to help your child adapt to your home.Chef it Up Meals are one of the best ways to build community in a household. They are a time for everyone to come together and just be around each other (and complain about their days). Making your child healthy meals

The Importance of Dental Care for Foster Children

Help your foster children develop positive oral hygiene habits now for a healthier future  About 20% of children aged 5-11 have at least one untreated decayed tooth. While it might seem difficult to get the children in your care to brush, it doesn’t have to be. Supporting and encouraging your foster child to have healthy dental habits can make a positive difference in their lives and establish healthy habits down the road.Why it Matters To some parents, skipping a brushing or flossing here and there might not seem like such a big deal. After all, their baby teeth will fall out, right? While that might be true. Implementing proper dental habits into your foster child’s routine while they’re young can lead to healthy dental habits in their future, preventing heavy dental bills due to rotten teeth, gingivitis, and many other conditions associated with poor oral health.Make it Fun Regular tooth

Tips for Writing an Adoption Reference Letter

Understanding the major pieces needed for writing an adoption reference letter will make the process much easier.“Reference letters are a good way for social workers on that file to understand what the adoptive family is like,” Nancy Goodman, editor at Best Assignment Help and Essay Writer, said. “They provide an external perspective to the family, which is a better-rounded picture of the home situation.”   Your friend, colleague or neighbor has just asked you to help them in the most exciting time of their life – their adoption journey. This process requires one or more reference letters from people who know the prospective parents well, and this just happens to be you.  You’re understandably honored and happy to help them make their dream a reality since you think they would be great parents. Once this sinks in, however, it’s normal to feel worried about what to write since this is such

Coping with Grief After an Adoption Falls Through

One mom shares her advice on grieving the children you are not chosen to adopt.  When Greg and Jennifer Wolff decided to grow from a family of three, they opted to pursue adoption through the U.S. Foster Care system. “It was kind of a dream adoption scenario,” Jennifer said. “From the day that we did our foster parent training to the day that his adoption was finalized was just over a year. Everything went very smoothly, and it was an easy transition. That was our first experience, so we thought all adoption was that easy.” Thirteen years after adopting Keon, now 15, they are three years into their second adoption. The couple has experienced eight failed adoptions at the Interstate Compact on Placement of Children (ICPC) and selection committee levels, which fall toward the end of the adoption process depending on the state.  “The biggest heartbreak was back in October,

The Importance of Emotionally Investing in Children

Children are precious stewards of our future; caring for them and raising them to be healthy, well-adjusted adults should be our ultimate priority. In a world increasingly fraught with danger, tragedy, and uncertainty, it is more vital now than ever to equip our children with the social and emotional skills that they will need to navigate their world that is sure to be vastly different than ours.Whether you are a parent, a friend, an aunt, uncle, or grandparent, the responsibility lies with you to ensure that each child you come in contact with has the tools that they need to become successful, fully functioning adults. How can you take your precious time with these precious ones and use it in ways that enrich everyone involved? Here are some simple ways that you can foster their natural curiosity, innovation, and intelligence in ways that boost their self-esteem and increase their confidence

Homemade Crafts For Your Mom This Mother’s Day

Mother’s Day is coming up fast, are you ready? Here are some great last minute gift ideas that the ladies in your life will cherish forever.Decorated Candy StashYou can never go wrong with candy as a gift, especially when it’s in an adorable hand crafted box. All you need is a tackle box organizer and feel free to decorate it however you want!Herbal Floral PerfumeAll you need is water, assorted flowers and herbs, essential oils, and a spray bottle! Not only does it look beautiful inside the bottle, it also smells great.Book About MomThis is a wonderful gift that mom will cherish for life. You can ever put a twist on it by adding your own prompts and drawings!Framed FlowersGive the gift of beautiful flowers that will last forever without the hassle of having to water them.Sand CandlesThese beautiful candles can be made in just 10 minutes! All you need