Fun Ideas for Mother’s Day: How to Feel Super Special as a Mom to a Preschooler

Yes, if you’re reading this blog, you’re probably mom to a toddler or preschooler and chances are they wouldn’t know how to celebrate Mother’s Day without a little guidance from you.

So, here are some simple tips to feel super special this Mother’s Day:

1. Snuggle Up Together in the Morning

Let Mother’s Day start with a smile and snuggle up in bed with your little one. Tickle, kiss, or just snuggle. Breathe in that toddler smell and hold on to it. Best way to start your day, isn’t it?

 2. Have Pancakes (or Brownies) for Breakfast

Your littles may not be able to make and bring you breakfast in bed but you sure can whip up a special treat or two. Have whatever is your favorite food for breakfast. Pizza in the AM, anyone?

 3. Let Your Toddler Dress You Up

Ahh, now this should be fun. Ask your kids to pick out your outfit for the day. To be safe, give them a choice between two outfits you’ve already picked. Help them find accessories that match and if you’re brave enough, suggest a lip color as well.

 4. Make Little Love Notes for Each Other

Have fun painting or glueing together alphabets and heart signs to make little ‘I heart you’ notes that your toddler can then take in his back pack or lunch box during the week. You can put yours up on the family bulletin board, the mirror and your wallet. Yes, I totally do that!

5. Hug Often and Say ‘I love you’

Finally, what makes Mother’s Day super special is being loved by our little ones. So, during the day, no matter how busy or crazy it may be, stop every now and then, kneel down, look your little one in the eye and tell them how much you love them and hug them. Tight.

How will you be making Mother’s Day special for your toddler and you this year?

Posted in Kids' Activities and Ideas | 2 Comments

{Contest} Making Hygiene Fun with Wett Giggles and the Potty Tots!

Here at the Potty Tots blog, we’re all about about having a lot of FUN with potty training, staying healthy and developing good hygiene.

That is why every month, we have a cool giveaway to help make your potty training journey easier and better.

This month, we’re thrilled to be partnering with a super-cute soap company, Wett Giggles. Owned by a mom who also makes the adorable animal and planet-shaped soaps, Wett Giggles is all about fun and good hygiene.

The Wett Giggles soaps are made of natural ingredients, essential oils and have a cute toy AND nail brush as well. Talk about clean hands!

Have you met the Wett Giggles? They all have cute Shakespearean names and lovely fragrances as well. Check ‘em out and you’ll know why they’re such a HIT with parents and kids, alike.

Now YOU can win a Wett Giggles soap just for your little one!

To enter:

Visit the Wett Giggles site and tell us which Wett Giggles soap do YOU like the most?

For additional entries:

Follow @pottytots and @wettgiggles on Twitter

Join the Potty Tots and Wett Giggles on Facebook

Sign up for our newsletter

Giveaway is US only and is open till 05/10.

So, go ahead, enter and make kiddie hygiene a lot of fun!

Posted in Giveaways and Contests | Leave a comment

Summer Fun for Preschoolers: The Big List of Activities to Keep Toddlers Active and Engaged When Days are Hot

With the days getting longer and the sun getting hotter, chances are you have a bunch of kids at home wanting to ‘do something’ and not knowing what. Yes, the summer season can be a long one if you don’t have a lineup of activities to keep the little ones engaged and occupied so that you can get a meal made or a load of laundry done.
Here is a list of summer fun activities to keep preschoolers happy when days are hot:
1. Reading picture books.
2. Coloring books and printouts.
3. Sticker fun. Great way to make greeting cards for the whole family.
4. Craft activities. Need inspiration? Here’s a list of 30 craft sites filled with ideas!
5. Floating paper boats in the bathroom or kitchen sink.
6. Swimming sessions in an indoor pool.
7. Splash fest in the bath tub. Messy but lots of fun.
8. Make ice cream or ice lollies.
9. Make summer-themed sandwiches.
10. Baking cookies or cupcakes.
11. Decorating cookies or cupcakes.
12. Playing in the freshly washed and dried laundry and helping you sort after that.
13. Build pillow forts and castles.
14. Spray cleaning their toys with a spray bottle filled with clean, drinking water. Yes, my daughter loves this.
15. Pretend play.
16. Popcorn and movie afternoon.
17. Stargazing and moon watching.
18. Visit a friend or relative.
19. Write a letter to Grandma and Grandpa or a favorite aunt or uncle.
20. Visit the post office to send the letter and see how a post office works.
21. Have a picnic in your front lawn or backyard or the family room!
22. Stage a play. Tape it and then watch it together for some snuggle time and lots of giggles.
23. Visit the library.
24. Play board games, like Tumbling Monkeys or Hungry Hippos.
25. Sleep in late.

What are your plans for summer? Do you have some fun activities lined up for the little ones?
Share with us in the comments below or head over to the Potty Tots Facebook page and join in the discussion there.

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots fan.

Photo Credits:

Photo1 : madgerly

Photo 2: Eva Blue

Posted in Kids' Activities and Ideas | Leave a comment

Fun Chores for Preschoolers: How to Encourage Your Toddler to Help Around the House

We’ve been talking a lot about getting your little ones ready for preschool and making their first day at preschool tons of fun. So, naturally, now that they’re ready for more independence and responsibility, let’s see what chores can they help out with:

1. Toy Clean Up

One of the easiest and yet, most important ‘toddler’ chore that a preschooler can start helping out with is cleaning up after play time. Yes, deal with toy clutter by enlisting your toddler’s help. You can of course, help out but do more directing than actually helping. Tell your little one where to put the books, trucks and dolls. Make clean up time easy and fun by singing a fun song and by using picture or letter labels to indicate what goes where.

2. Laundry Sorting

Another fun chore is sorting the laundry. You’ll get some help and your preschooler will get number or color practice. You can give him the responsibility of sorting the different colored socks together or counting the number of tees while putting them aside.

In fact, if you line dry your laundry, you can ask your little helper to help you put the clothes out on the line or drying rack as well.

3. Laying the Table

Now, you don’t have to hand over your fine china or glassware to those chubby, little hands but you can certainly enlist their help in laying the spoons and cutlery out or unbreakable glasses on the table. Not only will your kids learn an important skill, they’ll also enjoy playing a part in the family meal.

Things to keep in mind when giving chores to toddlers:

  • Praise efforts and reward them occasionally. Rewarding every chore sets the wrong expectations.
  • You could, however, use a chore and reward chart where at the end of the week, you tally up the stars or stickers and let your toddler choose a reward.
  • Be patient. Your preschooler may struggle with sorting socks or may place the spoons and glasses the wrong way. That’s fine. It’s all part of the learning process. Correct but don’t criticize.
  •  Make it fun and not forced. The toddler years are years of learning, exploration and new found determination. Forcing a toddler to help you is not going to make either one of you happy. So, make chores fun and something that a preschooler will want to do, willingly.

What chores does your preschooler help you out with? How do you make it fun and interesting?

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Photo Credit: Abigail Batchelder

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler | Tagged | 1 Comment

How to Make the 1st Day of Preschool Fun for Your Toddler

So, the big day is here. Your li’l one is ready for preschool. And YOU want to make sure that the first day is just perfect.

Here are some tips to help you make the first day of preschool fun for everyone:

1. Pack a Special Lunch

The night before, involve your child in making and packing lunch. Talk about how he’ll have it along with all his new friends. Pack a special treat along with the healthier options and let him know that its for his first day. Here are some really great 1st day of preschool lunch ideas.

2. Put a Love Note in the Backpack or Lunchbox

Write a special note for the li’l guy or girl and slip it into the backpack. Make it visual since that will be easy to understand. A simple drawing of a heart with his photo on the card will tell him that you love him. Print out some of these lovely lunch box love notes from Picklebums and add your own photos and images for your preschooler.

3. Drop Your Child to School

Yes, even if you’ve opted for the school bus, make sure you drop him to the class on the first day. Introduce him to his teacher, help him identify kids he may know from the neighborhood or help him find his locker or table, and basically, ease him into the class environment.

4. Talk Up Being at Preschool

On the drive to the preschool, talk it up. Don’t make it a fancy, magical place. But talk about how much fun she’ll have, the new friends she’ll meet and the activities that they’ll do. If she’d accompanied you to the preschool earlier and is familiar with it, help her recall the playground, the toys in the class or the books that she’d enjoyed looking at.

5. Make Saying Goodbye Easy

Finally, make saying goodbye easy on your little one. Don’t start crying yourself, else you can be sure of a meltdown. Instead, give him a hug and kiss, let him know that you’ll be there to pick him up and take the teacher’s cue to leave. Whatever you do, don’t slip out of the class without saying bye and don’t bring him out of the classroom to calm him down. Both these situations are bound to upset your child more than ever and make leaving very difficult for both of you. So, make saying goodbye easy by being loving yet firm.

The first day of preschool is an important milestone in a child’s life. Helping a child to get used to the idea of being away from mom, dad and the familiar environment of the home and instead, be surrounded by new faces needs patience, compassion and lots of love. Here are some more ideas on making the first day of preschool super-fun.

Meanwhile, do share what tips do YOU have for easing a child into preschool life?

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Photo Credit: Elizabeth/Table4Five

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler, Preschool Tips and Tools | 1 Comment

{Contest} What’s Your Favorite Potty Tot Moment?

Here at the Potty Tots blog, we’re all about making potty training easy, empowering and stress-free for everyone. We’re also about having a lot of FUN.

That is why every month, we will have a cool giveaway to help make your potty training journey easier and better.

Kicking off the monthly giveaways, we’re thrilled to giveaway ONE lucky reader a complete Potty Tots potty training kit (choice of boy/girl)!

Have you met the Potty Tots yet? Check ‘em out and you’ll know why they’re such a HIT with parents and kids, alike.

To enter:

Simply tell us your favorite potty training moment. It could be an incident, a tip, a photo even. If you haven’t started potty training, don’t worry. Just share what you’re looking forward to the most.

You can comment here or on our Facebook page.

For additional entries:

Follow @pottytots on Twitter

Join the Potty Tots on Facebook

Sign up for our newsletter

Giveaway is US/Canada only and is open till 03/31.

So, go ahead, enter and make potty training a lot of fun!

Don’t forget to Vote for the Potty Tots to Get on the Shelf at Walmart! There’s less than 2 weeks to go now. You can vote everyday!

Posted in Giveaways and Contests | 5 Comments

5 Goals for Preschool Readiness: How to Know Your Toddler is Ready to be a Preschooler

The moment is bittersweet. It arrives all of a sudden. You’re not sure if you can deal with it. Yes, the time when your toddler gets ready for preschool is a major milestone for most parents.

How do you know that its time? How can you assess whether your little one is ready to be a part of a bigger world?

Here are 5 goals that can help you assess preschool readiness. Help your toddler shoot for these and you’ll know it is time to go looking for preschools:

1. Independence

Is your baby independent enough? Can she feed herself easily? Can he wash his hands on his own? Fostering independence in toddlers has many advantages and when you see that your baby is able to do quite a bit on his own, you can be fairly confident that he is ready for preschool.

2. Communication

Communication skills play an important role in assessing preschool readiness. A child who cannot communicate needs and wants clearly would find preschool life more difficult and challenging than one who can. So, if you feel that your li’l guy needs some more time to express his needs, hold off on the preschool application and instead, encourage him to talk and converse more with all of you at home.

3. Routines

Going to preschool means following a routine. Is your child capable of doing that? Do you have regular naptimes, bed and bath times or is everything unstructured and free-flowing? If preschool is on your agenda this year, then now is the time to start using a flexible yet structured routine for your toddler.

4. Social Skills

While preschools, themselves, are a great way to encourage socialization of toddlers, before you enroll your child, you need to assess whether he’s comfortable around strangers. Has he never spent time away from you? Or will the separation anxiety stress out both of you completely? If yes, you may want to start gently by leaving him in the care of a trusted friend or family member for short durations, before just leaving him at preschool.

Does he like working on projects on his own and can concentrate or focus on individual tasks? If so, he would be comfortable with preschool activities and would not find them difficult or challenging.

5. Potty-Training

Finally, most preschools require that children be potty-trained before they’re admitted. Not only is it easier for the school authorities, but it is much better for your child to be comfortable with using the potty on his own. It increases the sense of independence that young children value so much. So, make sure you’ve introduced the potty chair to your toddler before you fill out that preschool application.

Does your child go to preschool? How did you decide he was ready to be a preschooler?

The Potty Tots are participating in the Walmart Get on the Shelf Contest. They’d LOVE to reach more parents and kids all over the globe and could really use your help! VOTING is March 7th- April 3rd. Please vote using FaceBook or text 5145 to 383838 EVERY DAY! The Tots will love you for it!

Post by Prerna Malik, the resident Potty Tots blogger and mama to a Potty Tots Fan.

Posted in Parenting Your Toddler | Tagged | 2 Comments