Back to School Anxiety Soothers

Is back-to-school anxiety worrying your kid? Try these calming tips.

Will I get more homework? What if my teacher is mean? Starting a new year comes with a lot of unknowns, so it’s no wonder that many parents report that their kiddo is struck with anxiety this time of year. The biggest clues: Her happy summer mood has quickly turned restless, irritable, or withdrawn, or she starts complaining about headaches, stomachaches, or sleep problems. The good news? It’s nothing for you to worry about, because we’ve asked the experts what you can do.

1. Share your story 

Tell your child about that time in third grade when you were so worried about [whatever] but it ended up being totally okay. It will be proof that she’ll be able to overcome her stress as well.

2. Get them moving 

All of the sitting still that comes with the return of school can wreak havoc on a kid’s nerves. To counter that, make sure your child gets plenty of exercise after school. Physical activity is great for preventing — and alleviating — anxiety.

3. Reset sleep

If you can, try to adjust summer sleep times to the school schedule one to two weeks before the first day. A sudden change in routine can trigger stress. If it didn’t work or if sleep is just hard to come by, practice deep belly breathing right before bed.

4. Make a plan  

For instance, if your child is worried about meeting new friends, have him wear (and look for) conversation-starter clothes. How it works: He spies a classmate with an Angry Birds T-shirt. He likes Angry Birds, too! Ask potential-new-friend if he likes Angry Birds Star Wars. Bond created!


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Effective Child Discipline – Focus on your Parenting

Although discipline tactics and time-outs can be a more unpleasant part of raising children, it is necessary to recognize naughty behavior and act accordingly to ensure your little one knows right from wrong. It is absolutely essential to reward and reinforce good behavior while also making it very clear to guide your child away from acting inappropriately. There are many different methods to discipline your child depending on your child’s learning style and your own personal preference. To be most successful in disciplining when your child acts out, it is important to use a variety of tactics to see which one works best for your family.

Time-outs are just one of the many techniques to choose from, but should not be used alone. Time-outs should be used as a break in communication between child and parent, allowing for the child to practice calming his or herself down. This not only lets the child know that what he or she did was wrong, but helps to establish self-control and encourages independence. Here are three tips that we recommend:

1. Punishing your child for every little thing he or she does will not do anyone any good. It is extremely important to help your child form healthy habits and learn that it is wrong to act violently, dangerously, or inappropriately. Figure out what is most important to you. Differentiate the behaviors that are absolutely not okay and the behaviors that are indicative of early childhood. For example, will you reprimand your daughter if she insists on wearing the same pink skirt for a week or would you rather instill the notion that biting is very bad? It is absolutely normal for children to have bouts of anger, confusion, and frustration and it is our jobs as parents to help them. If you punish your son or daughter every time they cry, this may confuse your child into thinking feeling sad, angry, or upset is wrong. Choose your battles wisely in order to properly discipline your child.

2. Consistency is the key. Your reactions to your child’s behavior must be consistent in order to help them understand the difference between good and bad behavior. There is no set schedule or explicit guidelines to follow to ensure your child will stop behaving inappropriately; therefore, it is important to consistently reinforce your corrections. For example, if your child is using hitting to communicate, use a similar tone of voice and volume to state that this is not okay.

3. Be clear, short, and simple when disciplining your child. Although it may be difficult, try not to get emotional. For many of us, it is hard not to give in, reasoning through lengthy conversations of why this is wrong. This may do more harm than good, confusing your child into thinking that the bad behavior is acceptable. Keep it short and simple by speaking in short sentences, using expressions, and a stern tone of voice. Repetition is helpful as well, establishing these lessons and allowing for them to sink in.

These are three of my most influential discipline tips I have found to be effective in raising a well-behaved and confident child.

Hanson, Cynthia (n.d.). 7 Tips for Disciplining Your Toddler. Retrieved July 15, 2013, from

Blog written by Rebecca Eisenberg. View more of Rebecca’s work here.

How to Discipline Kids: What I’ve Learn

Recently, my sister and her two children came to Long Beach to pay a visit to my family. Their weeklong stay was filled with excitement, activity, and laughter! Unfortunately, happiness wasn’t the only thing that filled these seven days. My son, Ethan, normally a very happy and well-behaved child, suddenly became a midnight terror. Relentlessly running around and hitting his cousins, Ethan persevered without remorse. I realized that my child was in need of some serious discipline.

Does this sound like you: You know that what you’re doing isn’t really working, but you’re not sure how to make things better. Rest assured, that’s okay—you’re not supposed to know all the answers. Many parents have a hard time being consistent and struggle because of guilt, self-doubt, or just sheer exhaustion.

Here’s the good news—you can overcome the obstacles you face. Even if you think you’ve been inconsistent up to this point with your child, it’s never too late to change. Let’s take a look at why it’s important and how you can start being more consistent right away.


Why Consistency is Important

No one can be 100% consistent 100% of the time, but what happens when you’re frequently inconsistent? You’ll find that your child’s behavior will get worse—and you’ll be more tired and worn down as a result.

Why is consistency important for kids? Children need to know what to expect because it helps them make informed decisions. As they grow, they learn that certain behaviors lead to certain outcomes. Children need boundaries to understand what is acceptable and what is unacceptable. Inconsistency doesn’t set boundaries…it creates wiggle room. And wiggle room leads to potential bad behavior.

To make matters worse, there’s a good chance you’ll be seen as less of an authority when you’re not consistent. This is because you might say one thing, like “Don’t swear,” but fail to consistently back that up with actions that show you mean it, such as providing a meaningful and effective consequence each and every time. When your child gets the message that you don’t mean what you say, what you say starts to lose meaning.


Why Staying in Control is Important

The key to staying in control when your child is having a meltdown is to try to keep your composure even when your blood is reaching a boiling point. You have to control your emotions. Violence only breeds violence and what your child sees and feels may spur the same kind of actions towards others.


Why Moving from Punishment to Love is Important

There is an excellent parenting book by Alfie Kohn called Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason. One basic need all children have, Kohn argues, is to be loved unconditionally, to know that they will be accepted even if they screw up or fall short. Yet conventional approaches to parenting such as punishments (including “time-outs”), rewards (including positive reinforcement), and other forms of control teach children that they are loved only when they please us or impress us. Show your child that you still love them, although you may be disciplining their actions. After their punishment, return to being the open and loving parent that you are.

Lastly, BREATHE! Remind yourself that you are doing the most challenging thing in the world – you are raising a human being. Laugh and have fun! Don’t take things too seriously.


Avoiding Toxic Products for Your Kids

One would expect that the toys our children are exposed to are safe. Moms have enough to worry about without the notion that their kids are handling products containing hazardous, disease-causing carcinogens. However, tragically, there are a shocking amount of manufactured goods containing harmful levels of toxins such as lead and cadmium. Selecting nontoxic products for your children is absolutely imperative to maintain a long, healthy, and happy childhood. Reading up on toy safety is important to keep up with the nontoxic toy trends and provide your child or children with fun, reliable merchandise.

To give you an overview of hazardous chemicals often found in toys, there are three major contributors. Lead is a very toxic element that can lead to serious health problems. When it is absorbed (by inhaling or swallowing it, in most cases), it spreads throughout the body, acting as a poison wherever it is dispersed. Most of the time, lead damages bone, negatively affecting the body’s ability to absorb calcium. Presently, most of the lead used in the manufacturing of toys has been replaced by cadmium, which is also detrimental to child health. Cadmium has been known to weaken bone structure, negatively impact kidney function, and slow brain development. Phthalates are another issue. This chemical is used to create flexibility or soften hard plastic in toys and is known to damage hormone development. Along with these poisonous contaminants, it is important to beware of small pieces that your child could possibly choke on, such as magnets. Unfortunately, studies have shown certain toys to have choking misinformation or ambiguous warnings. Magnets and small pieces accidentally swallowed can lead to suffocation and intestinal blockages. In order to avoid these pollutants in your children’s toys, there are specific actions you can take.

To name a few tricks to keep your loved ones out of harm’s way, be extremely careful of what you buy. Educate yourself about toy safety and the products you buy. It is important to understand that certain toys are more dangerous than others. Read up on parenting blogs that support nontoxic products, such as BB Waters’ site: This is an excellent resource to answer your toxicity-related questions and explore opinions and information from like-minded, caring parents. BB Waters’ newest creation is a must-have stroller accessory, transforming your beach experience into a total breeze. The BeachBaby Towa’Round fastens to your child’s stroller, allowing you to effortlessly navigate through the sand. All products featured on the site are eco-friendly and 100% nontoxic.

If you can, try and purchase natural products such as unpainted wood. Avoiding plastics is a huge step in the right direction, steering clear of lead and phthalates. Additionally, more naturally made, nontoxic toys last longer and will save you time and money in the long run. Also relating to the importance of buying naturally crafted toys, stay away from low-cost, plastic jewelry, frequently known for containing both lead and cadmium.

Buy your toys selectively, putting your child’s best interest first. Use this information to contribute to the overall wellbeing of your family.

Sources for this article:

“Cleaner Living: Non-Toxic Toys for the Holidays.” CT Working Moms. Web. 31 May 2013.


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Blog written by Rebecca Eisenberg. View more of Rebecca’s work here.

Living in the Moment

Mindfulness can be seen as the practice of “being in the moment” – but what does this actually mean? Does it mean that if we’re mindful we should never think about the past or the future, never try to plan or to reflect on our past experience?

Actually, being in the moment means being mindfully aware of what is going on right here and now, in our experience, and this includes any thinking we do about the past or future. I never put much thought into this notion until I became a mother.

It began when my son, Ethan, began displaying poor sleeping habits. Ethan was a great sleeper from the start, but when he turned six weeks of age, sleep became a thing of the past. He developed ‘sensitivity to dairy’ and ‘reflux.’ So in his discomfort, sleep eluded him and kept both my husband and myself up during the night. I attempted to try to solve the problem and found a product called Colic Calm, which did help slightly, but didn’t come close to “solving” any issue. Our frequent and pleasant trips to the beach were soothing, but again, did not seem to tire him out enough to solve his problems.

It just so happened that around this time, I began implementing meditation into my daily routine. After realizing how stressed, tired, and over-reactive to Ethan’s behaviors I was becoming, it dawned on me that I needed to start doing something for myself as well. I suddenly found myself calmer. Collected. I found myself able to concentrate on what was currently happening. Instead of obsessing about Ethan not staying asleep in his crib, I found comfort that he slept in my arms. My meditation sessions grew longer and I found myself looking forward to cuddling him, rocking him, and enjoying the silent moments we got to spend together. The house suddenly relaxed.

After a few weeks of this, my son’s reflux dissipated. While I do believe that there were other factors that played in this sudden resolve, I also believe that children are amazing balls of energy that cannot help but absorb the energy around them. Ethan’s behaviors were a direct result from all the anxious and nervous energy I was bringing into the house.

Through these phases and through other personal phases of my life as a mother, I have found that patience and mindfulness help ease the tribulations that parents often go through. I’ve learned to be in the moment. To take deep breaths. To relax a little more. To live in the moment because, in the end, a life is measured by moments like these.

What I Loved About Pregnancy

Since we formally introduced our company and provided you, the reader, with a little insight of how BB Waters came to be, I thought it only natural to write a blog based on what I loved most about being pregnant and why I love parenthood so much!

I recently read an article that opened with a piece of advice, “Just like a good wife never complains about her husband, a good mother never complains about her pregnancy.”  I’ve often heard that saying in regards to husbands, but I’ve never heard it applied to pregnancy before.  It dawned on me the reasons why a saying like this would exist and I began chronicling all of the aspects of pregnancy that I truly loved.

While some may find it arguable, I think it is true – a good mother never complains about her pregnancy.  There are so many times a woman is pregnant in a lifetime and it seems cavalier, even detrimental to spend it complaining.  Sure, it can be hard at times, uncomfortable, mentally draining, and physically excruciating at times, but this is all part of the miracle of pregnancy – and it IS truly a miracle.

I was grateful to be pregnant.  I do admit that during my first trimester, I wasn’t totally in love with all of the changes my body underwent.  Losing my abs and experiencing hormonal changes wasn’t always a mental walk in the park.  The morning sickness and the nauseous feeling after eating meals were not at the top of my “favorite things about today” list.  At about my fourth month though, I read Brain Rules by John Medina.  In his pregnancy chapter, he uncovers many new insights about a baby’s mental life in the womb and delves into the mystery of how brains develop – all starting from a handful of tiny cells.  I realized it was time to change my attitude and really focus on all of the things that are so wonderful about being pregnant – not only for myself, but for the health of my child.

I allowed myself to embrace pregnancy and to connect with my changing (and growing) body as well as connect to the little being inside my belly.  I miss that belly.  The second half of my pregnancy was more nurturing than I could have ever imagined.  Coming to the realization that I was going to miss all of the great moments by focusing on the not-so-great moments allowed me to experience more compassion and mental connection than ever before.

There are only a number of times a mother feels her baby kick.  A limited number of times a mother watches her body grow a baby.  A limited number of times a mother gets to hold her new infant for the first time.  These are the moments I want to remember.

For me, pregnancy is the grandest example of the body’s amazing capacity to grow life and the soul’s ability to love someone without ever meeting.