When my first child was born, I had no clue what I was doing. Sure, I knew the basics, but sometimes the best lessons are learned ‘on the job’. Here are a few tips and ideas I’ve picked up through the years that I think every Mama should know!

Make sure you’re in the picture

Nobody needs to tell you to take pictures of your kids, but remember to include yourself in them, too. Years from now, they’ll want to remember the time you spent with them. So don’t worry about what your hair looks like; take a selfie with the kids!

Get silly

Being silly with our children is the easiest way to turn a bad day around and kids always get a kick out of it! Tip: take “silly selfies” with your kids – sticking out tongues, making funny faces, etc. They are the pictures you will treasure when they’re older.

Have a “yes” day

If you’re not sure what a YES day is, check out this book. Being a fairly “tough” Mom (my kids hear “No” often!) I couldn’t understand how I’d do this, but I am completely intrigued at how it changes the dynamic in the house. I love the idea of saying yes to everything – just for one day. It lets the kids be in charge of our itinerary, with almost no restrictions, and they love it. (Eating ice cream for breakfast? YES! Building a fort in the rec room and “living” in it all day? YES! Chocolate chip pancakes for dinner? YES! Staying up really late? YES!)

Try making your own baby food

Many Moms are intimidated by the idea of making their baby’s food, but it really is easy. Chopping fruit or steaming veggies, then pureeing in a blender (I liked using the easy-to-clean Magic Bullet) is simple and not too time-consuming, especially if you make a large amount and freeze it. The quality and taste is much better than store-bought food and you’ll save a ton of money. (Bonus: you’ll never have to worry about processed food safety recalls.) I used KidCo freezer trays and a feeding dish, and supplemented with Baby Cubes (for when I made lots of extra for freezer stock) – a $45 investment that lasted through two kids (and has been passed on to a third). Tip: one of my favourite feeding products is the Boon Squirt spoon – genius!

 

Don’t stress over toilet training

After going through it with two kids, I will tell you something that many other parents have affirmed – your child will go on the potty when they are ready, and not a moment sooner. I’ve known children whose parents “trained” them at 17 months of age, but end up wearing Pull-ups at night until they’re five. Some kids catch on sooner – and their bodies are ready – before other kids… and that’s okay. I’ve learned not to make it a struggle; just show your child what to do, have the tools for him to do it (potty seat, step stool, etc) and with some encouragement (potty training storybooks, sticker chart, etc.) he’ll do it in his own time. (In case you’re wondering, my children both trained at the age of three. The first one I stressed over; the second one I didn’t… go figure!)

 

Don’t leave home without rice biscuits

Every Mom I know swears by rice biscuits. They’re beloved by little ones, and made with simple (and few) ingredients. The best part? They practically melt in babies’ mouths so there’s little chance of choking. My kids loved the Mum-Mum Organic and President’s Choice Organic brands. As long as I had some rice rusks with me, my babies were happy….and that made me happy!
Do you have any parenting tips or must-have products that you swear by? We’d love for you to share them with our community, using the hashtag #CMRmomtip. You can…

I’ll compile all comments in a future post, and will be sure to include your name along with your tip!


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