Preschooler Water Safety

With temperatures in the 100 degree range, my mind immediately and excitedly races to the idea of hitting the swimming pool. I mean I love to swim and hope that my little guy will to. But, with the desire for him to develop a similar passion does come a fair amount of fear. Recently, a young child lost his life to the dangers of the water. So, to ease my worries I recently enrolled my son in swimming lessons at a local center. With hopeful anticipation I then began scouting out all open swim times in the area. In case you are like me don’t forget the following water safety tips, let’s work together to keep are little’s safe:

  • Always keep your eyes on your kiddo, accidents happen quickly and you want to be able to act fast. For kiddos under the age of 14 drowning is on the most common cause of death list. A child can drown in less than 2 minutes if their head goes under water.
  • Always do a quick foot dip test; this will allow you to asses the water temperature before you dive in. Extreme water temps can shock your body. A slow descent is sometimes best with a little one.
  • If possible swim with a buddy or two; the more hands and eyes on the kiddos the better.
  • Use flotation devices, not only will this give you child a sense of independence and added fun but will free you up to swim a few strokes hands free.
  • Remind the little ones to walk and not run, areas around the pool are very slippery.
  • Keep food to outside the pool, you don’t want to choke or facilitate a messy clean up.

Remember, these are just a few ideas to keep in mind. Your parental intuition is your best guide, don’t second guess it!

Most importantly, have fun with your little and enjoy this fleeting moment with them while you can. I plan to!

As always don’t forget to be the sweet in someone’s day. BSM

 

Keep Me In The Valley

When I logged on this morning this first thing I saw was the Daily Writing Prompt. Now, I have seen them before, they all seem very interesting but never really spoke to me however today’s was different: Take the third line of the last song you heard, make it your post title, and write for fifteen minutes.  It is funny what can send you into a total reflective mode; and, for that I say thank you Daily Prompt.

The last song I remember hearing before getting out of the car this morning is titled “My God Is Awesome”.  Possibly the reason this prompt spoke to me is because this is one of my favorite songs. Nonetheless, the third line of this song (depending on how you look at it) is – Keep Me in the Valley, it then goes on to say Hide Me from the Rain. (Keep Me in the Valley, Hide Me from the Rain).

The past 18 months of my life’s journey have been a roller coaster ride to say the least, it has vacillated between the long slow climb up the first incline of the coaster to the brief pause at the top peak to the instant yet surprising downward plunge of the first hill.

During the starting months of this roller coaster ride of a time, I was working a job that I did not particularly care for, was pregnant, in a relationship and then not in a relationship. It was not until today, this Daily Prompt, that song lyric, that I realized that the Lord is faithful and has been ever so to me. While in the valley’s of these past months He truly has hidden me from the rain. I cannot even imagine (nor do I want to)what or where I would be had the Lord not sheltered me when I thought my life sucked. It is now through thoughtful reflection that I can see that He is using this time to bring me into a closer relationship with Him and to teach me some things about myself.  I am learning the emotion behind Psalms 23. Meaning, that when I feel that valley moment approaching , when I walk “through the valley of the shadow of death” that God is with me, that He comforts me, and that with Him I do not need to fear. I am more than a conqueror!  But, here is the real beauty of being kept in the valley and hidden from the rain: even during my early difficult moments God gave me Joy. In July 2012 I accepted a new position that I absolutely love and most importantly I welcomed my precious love, my son! Both of these things are sweeter because of the preceding disappointments. They give me life! Sure there are times where I think I can not make it or how can I do this or the classic Why ME?. But, through it all, I have learned God is Faithful – He is Good, and if you allow him to hide you from the rain while in the valley moments of life, if you can trust Him he will give you Joy. So what am I trying to say: I am simply saying that I am growing and changing, I am leaning and depending, I am trusting and letting go. And, because of this I know I will continue to experience Joy even while being kept in the Valley.

Don’t forget to be the sweet in someone’s day! BSM

 

The Vacation Is Over: Going Back to Work with a Toddler at Home.

My Story     

This time last year I was snuggled up close to my three week old son, reveling in all the joy of being a first time new mom. Each time that I would look in to his eyes, I would wonder how I was so perfectly blessed and beautifully selected to behold such a precious gift. As the days passed a gloomy thought began to enter my head — You have to return to work soon. When the dreaded day approached and I left my not even eight week old precious baby boy with his grandparents (blessed, I know) and began my transition back to the work force, I felt that I was living life in a foggy daze, each moment felt surreal but, somehow, I managed to make it through the year. Now, let me add here that I am in the education field so I did have the great opportunity to spend most Holidays at home with my son. And, also share one of the most important perks of all SUMMER VACATION. This, however, is where my tragic sadness begins…
 
There is a term that used to describe what children go through when apart from their parent after a bond has been established, but I would like to suggest that I am too am going through this very same thing, “Separation Anxiety”. However, a more advanced type, because mine was also preceded by depression. Why? Because, I knew it was coming! An interesting survey was cited in the book Working Mom Survival Guide: “67 percent of the working moms surveyed experienced separation anxiety when they first returned to work.” But, here is my truth, and no I am not afraid to say it — I did not feel this way until this year. The SECOND time I had to return to work. Was it the newness that had me blinded the first time? Now, I admit I am in a unique situation but this is an awful feeling. Is this how he feels? I ask myself, is it the age of my son that has me wearing a frown this time? Am I alone? or Can I get an Amen? (yes, I’m churchy)
 
Last year I had a newborn, and yes I loved the beauty of that moment. But, this summer I have a toddler! A walking, talking, drooling, teething, laughing machine. Each summer day my son and I made new discoveries and learned more about each other. Sometimes, we would take a break from the world and isolate ourselves inside our home, where we would play, talk, read, nap and eat only to repeat this same pattern the next day. This summer compared to last summer was absolutely different (minus the diaper changes, of course). I was able to see first hand the rapid growth that my son was making and wanted to influence it every step of the way. More and more of his infectious personality was bursting out and I was hooked, totally and completing in love with my baby boy. And then… yep, you guessed it, the thought and now the reality, the vacation is over…back to work.
 
So, here I sit…

Trying to get busy with work, focus on my passion, and make a difference in the world when all of my thoughts are on ten little fingers and ten little toes running around my parent’s house and the next free moment I will have to call him and hear his sweet darling voice. It has been and will be an uphill battle this year, but as long as my colleagues will indulge me in the constant conversation and a daily photo share around my son, maybe I will survive. I will keep you posted. Until then, remember to be the sweet in someone’s day!

BSM