Category Archives: One Parents Perspective

Spotlight on opinions, perspectives and experiences of parents in Kamloops.

Hitting the Trails with Dirty Feet

Last Sunday, over 360 participants ran in the first North Face Dirty Feet Trail Run of the season in the Batchelor/Lac Du Bois Grasslands Park.

It was the second year in a row that our entire family has participated in the 5km event and the kids were far more engaged this year!

DSCN4833

My husband ran with our six year old while I ran with our youngest. It was a little chilly at the start of the race for the little one, but it quickly became comfortable enough for her to shed a layer.  The rain that threatened to fall before the race never materialized and all of us racers enjoyed the calm weather and dry terrain.

RSCN4854

My daughter ran/walked the entire way, stopping only to take off Continue reading Hitting the Trails with Dirty Feet

Back-To-School: 2015 Edition

The KP Been There Done That Squad is a group of parents sharing their thoughts and experiences on a few topics related to raising their children in Kamloops.

Read more about the BTDT Squad, here. 


Today’s question is:

What are your tips for a smooth transition to a back-to-school routine?

Naomi, mother of four boys, age 11, 5, 2, and 10 months:

My eldest son has high functioning ASD, so a smooth transition back into the school year is essential in order to avoid meltdowns. Although we homeschool, it is basically the same as what we will be doing for the five year old, who is starting kindergarten in public school this year.  I really try to maintain similar rhythm and routine through the summer months. It helps children to stay somewhat on schedule. We don’t give them extra TV or computer time for example, and we try to include crafts and learning opportunities so they don’t get out of practice.

We are very gradual in our build up back to a full day. I start off with a week of “warning”. We talk about how things are going to be changing to get back into the swing of things. We post a schedule. The next week we start with the school year routine (early rising, getting dressed on time, etc). The starting week of school we amp up slowly. Day one is an intro with a special breakfast and a cool activity. Day two includes one subject. Day three we add something else. We continue in this manner until we are fully back into routine.

We also love to include lots of visual schedules all over the house to reduce panic over the “unknown”, and help us transition easier. They aren’t fancy, but they are simple reminders, especially for the children who can’t read. These include morning routines, and a daily school schedule.

It’s hard to believe the summer is almost over, but to be honest, getting back into a routine is comforting for me!


Christina, Mom of 4 girls born in 5 years:

ChristinaBTDT1) I made an area to keep track of everything at the main door where we leave the house. There are pockets for each kid to sort notices and homework. It also has a white board for shopping lists and emergency information. A large calendar to record all of our upcoming events (sports, trips, special school days) hangs in the middle low enough for the kids who can read to see, but high enough to keep it from being used as a doodle pad.

2) I’ve decided that I will not be bringing out fall wardrobes until after school starts. In the past few years I have and it’s still warm enough that they want to wear their summer clothes. The extra clothes just add more confusion in picking out outfits and extra laundry chaos.

3) I’ve been baking for easier lunches and breakfasts (loaves and muffins) with in season fruits and veggies from the garden.


JodiBTDT

Jodi – Mom of 5 & 6 year old:

Of course, our week-long summer holiday fell within the last two weeks before school starts, so we slowly began preparing by mid-summer.

First, I myself started getting up earlier. During the 2014-2015 school year, I found that on days that I got up earlier than the kids were more productive and less stressful.

We also began serving the kids more breakfast and within a half hour of waking. No more grabbing a banana or cookie and playing for a couple of hours before wandering back into the kitchen for breakfast! Same for lunch…this summer, we got into the habit of eating snacks and missing lunch entirely, until 3 o’clock rolled around. So we began preparing lunch around noon.

***Disclaimer: The above all went out the window once we left on a trip, travelling east through several different time zones! But, we tried.

So, in the days leading up to the first day of school, we’ll get the kids Continue reading Back-To-School: 2015 Edition

Prenatal Yoga and Parent and Baby Yoga – Grounding as an Essential Life Skill

One of the first things I tell Moms-to-be in a prenatal class is that it is a place where you can actually be pregnant.

This may sound silly, redundant even, but a women fulfills so many roles – wife, daughter, sister, co-worker, confidant, taxi driver, grocery buyer (add your own) – that while people may be overjoyed to hear our news, we are still required to fulfill all of the duties that come with those roles. All this, while our bodies work at a literally dizzying pace to create brains, hearts, bones, lungs and cute little toes.

We are held on pedestals while pregnant, we become public property, but in a manner of reverence, from my experience, as if we are the saviours of the future – which we actually are.

But after we have our babies, for many there is a sense of being dropped, as if that relatively comfortable hammock of support is pulled out from beneath us. We are left alone – with no manual – in a state of complete exhaustion. And when does our body and nervous system heal and renew?  When we rest.

_MG_2268

Pre and Postnatal Yoga provided me with a sense of stability. I have seen many women make the transition into Motherhood with grace and ease. I was not one of those women. After my first birth I developed post-partum depression. My birth went nothing like imagined, ending in a scheduled caesarean birth. After following every conflicting tidbit of advice and intervention, I couldn’t breastfeed. Even with support, I spent three weeks without stringing three consecutive hours of sleep together.

Leading up to my birth I attended prenatal yoga classes. We focused on grounding, breathing, and moving – in that order. I came to Continue reading Prenatal Yoga and Parent and Baby Yoga – Grounding as an Essential Life Skill

Frozen in Time With Aria Arts Photography

Like all parents, I feel like my children are growing up way too fast. Since they are so close in age and our family does a lot of activities together, the milestones and years just seems to be slipping by at an alarming rate.

I recently took the children to a photo session with Melanie from
Aria Arts Photography. Not only did she take the time to make the children feel comfortable in her studio but she also followed their cues and patiently waited through outfit changes. My daughter even allowed her to brush and put a curl in her hair, something that I’ve never even been successful with!

Fast forward a few days, and it was time for our second appointment with Melanie, in order to view the images and select the ones I wanted to be printed for their individual folios.

I walked into her studio, was offered a cup of coffee and sat down on the sofa. When she opened up the folder containing the images, I gasped.

DSC_0059

Melanie managed to “freeze” both my children for a brief amount of time and in doing so, captured their true “self”.

Anyone who knows my 5 year old boy would say that he is an “old soul”, which is exactly how he appears in this photograph. Also, it is worth noting that he is not the easiest subject to work with in the first place!

DSC_0051

At 4 years of age, it is my little girl who has made the biggest Continue reading Frozen in Time With Aria Arts Photography

Get Your Family Started With Geocaching!

“Geocaching is when you find secret treasures hidden under logs or under benches by looking on the map and seeing if it’s 100m or 2m or 14m away.”  – definition by S, age 7.

Geocaching is the use of a GPS to locate a hidden treasure by moving to the designated coordinates.

photo (3)

My husband and I like solving puzzles and riddles and have passed on that interest to our kids. We like giving them tasks to accomplish and they LOVE earning the rewards that they can earn.
We like to set up challenges around town and enjoy exploring the outdoors and seeing what we can find. Naturally, geocaching was something that we had heard about and in which we had interest. Without a GPS unit, we hadn’t had the opportunity to take our kids (9, 7, 5 and 1) to explore and try our hand at locating the hidden treasures. When eavesdropping on a coffee shop conversation one day, I was bold enough to ask a little more and was told that there is an app that can be used to help non-GPS holders to geocache. There is a free version and a full version that costs $10. I got the free version and had it loaded onto my phone right away. Then, it sat there. And sat there and sat there and sat there. We didn’t ever get the chance to go out.

Last month, on a warm and sunny day, my kids and I opened the app and selected “find nearby geocaches” There were five within a short walk from my house, in the local park. We recruited some company and set off to see what we could find.

image

My eldest son held the phone and watched as the line to the cache got shorter and shorter as we walked forward. He read off the distance and the crew got more and more excited. 5m, 4m, 3m, 2m, 1m! We looked high and low. We read all the descriptions and hints. We searched and searched in the brush. NO luck. Geocaching is lame!

We didn’t want to leave the excursion a total failure so we decided to try our hand at the next Continue reading Get Your Family Started With Geocaching!