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Happiness comes from the little things in life,
and that's true for for both kids and parents alike. Here's a list of little things
you're probably doing to make your kids happy that you should be doing for
yourself too. You deserve it!
1. Wear only underwear that makes you happy
You don't expect your 4-year-old to accept boring underwear, so why should you have to? They make superhero underpants for adults too, you know.
understand that kids need to have the freedom to get messy,
whether with art or food or splashing through mud puddles in the rain. Adults need to make a mess, too, for our own sanity. So buy yourself a
pair of galoshes and go to town on those puddles. Your kids will love it.
3. Put the phone down
We make valiant efforts not to look at our phones and other devices in front of our
children, but once the kids are asleep we often find ourselves mindlessly
surfing the web or getting two years deep into the Instagram accounts of people
we only barely knew in high school. Adult relationships, both romantic ones and
friendships, need the same kind of respect and screen-free quality time that we give our
4. Stand up for yourself
When something is wrong in your kid's life, whether
it's a bully in their school or a skill they are struggling to master, we don't ignore it. Our mother bear instinct prompts us to take
action to right the wrongs in their life if at all possible. Don't lose that feisty ambition
when it comes to tackling the problem areas in your own life.
5. Explore your interests
you're taking a walk with your toddler, you probably stop several times to blow
the fluff from a dandelion or watch the squirrels climbing a tree. When you're
on your own, you probably don't allow things to catch your eye or your interest. Curiosity
is not a waste of time, at any age. Keep learning about things that interest you.
6. Keep the holidays magical
What's your favorite thing about Thanksgiving,
Christmas or the Fourth of July? Have your old annual traditions been getting
skipped over in favor of new holiday traditions for the kids? Make room to keep
the magic alive for yourself. It will only make the holidays richer for the rest of the family.
For our kids, we meticulously cut off sandwich crusts and make perfect Disney characters out of pancakes. Then for our own meals we end up eating a pile of various leftovers smashed into one big brown blob in a Tupperware. You deserve better. If you pack a
lunch, take time to make it look attractive and appealing, whether that means smiley face on your sandwich or an obsessively neat and organized little bento box.
Kids' birthdays are always a big deal and that's wonderful. But parents, when your birthday rolls around, don't let it go by unnoticed. You don't need to throw a party or spend all day baking yourself a birthday cake (unless you really
enjoy the baking part.) If no one else in your family can cook then go ahead and buy yourself a cake, or a pie or whatever your favorite birthday food is. Just make sure there are candles and singing.
9. Pack snacks you like
Any parent knows to not let a child
go too long without eating for too long or the low blood sugar will surely
result in a meltdown. But what about yourself? Although a mother's "hangry" meltdown may or may not be as obvious as a kicking
and screaming tantrum in the grocery store, it's just as unpleasant. When snack time rolls around, it should include everybody.
10. Make bedtime a comforting ritual
Every night, kids get sent off to sleep with lavender baths, lullabies and warm fuzzy pajamas. Then a few hours later, parents end up dozing off while paying bills on their cell phones in bed. This is no way to drift off to sleep. Find one or two small things that make you feel relaxed and happy and make it part of your own pre-sleep ritual.