January 29, 2007

Educational Toys and Games

When we are looking for educational toys and games for our children, it is always helpful to know what children are like at the various stages of their development.

During infancy, nearly everything a baby can touch, taste, smell, see, hear or feel is a learning experience, but there really are very few educational toys and games for a child of this age, with the following exceptions: language ‘games’. Learning language, even from birth, is of extreme importance to your baby’s mental development and preparation for school. Talk to your baby!! If you name objects many times a day, these objects become his ‘educational toys and games’! Your baby is learning to associate a particular sound with the particular object, whether it is a toy, or baby’s feet during bath time, or your nose (and baby’s nose), and so forth.

You can also talk about activities throughout the day, every day. The repetition of words is key. Our babies recognize many words long before they can speak even a single word. How would your baby ever know to say “mama” or “dada” if you did not repeat these words hundreds of times?

I remember when my first-born learned the word for moon. There was a favorite soft book of his, with dozens of pictures that we would look at together, every day, saying the word of each object. When he was about 16 months, there was a full moon in a clear sky. We went out on the porch to enjoy the early evening, and he spotted the moon. His enthusiasm was immense, as he alternated his little feet in a fast dance, and pointed to the sky exclaiming, “Moon, moon, moon!!” This was the first time he had ever said the word.

As your baby gets older, educational toys and games are in abundance. Blocks, crayons, easy puzzles, hand puppets, stacking toys, mobiles, and so on, all help to develop motor skills, spatial awareness, recognition of various sounds, and language skills if baby has ‘talking’ company for some of the time when he is engaged in play. Of all the toys your pre-school child might have, their value will be enhanced dramatically by your participation in his play, with spoken words, words, words! Language skills are further increased by naming the surroundings, the travels from one room or one place to another, and so forth.

Educational toys and games are a big part of your child’s early years when they are fun! Babies and children are naturally curious, from the first few weeks of life. They are hungry to learn. But the keyword is “fun”. We should not try to teach letters and reading and math until a child is ready to learn, and this is generally not during the preschool years, even though there are some exceptions. Follow the child’s lead, and if she points to a magnetic letter on the refrigerator and says its name, we can applaud and share in her enthusiasm.


Welcome To My Little Toys! My Little Toys offers products of the highest quality that will enable you to make your child’s world a delightful, stimulating, educational and safe environment. Please visit us often as our product catalog continues to include more toys for all age groups.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Pamela_Emerson

January 28, 2007

The Best Gift for Your Guy This Valentine’s Day is You


(ARA) – With the most kissable day around the corner, couples scramble to find the most meaningful and personal gift for Valentine’s Day. With flowers, candy and stuffed animals being so stereotypical and other gifts being costly, why not give the one thing that brought you together in the first place: You!

Valentine’s Day is a great reason to get a makeover and unveil the new you. Not only will you feel great, your special guy will adore the dreamy new look of the woman he fell in love with. A hot new you doesn’t need to come from expensive doctors or spa treatments. Try these ideas at home for a ravishing appearance that is bound to surprise and delight him:

So many of us fall into hair ruts each day as our mornings are short and styling time is sacrificed. For Valentine’s Day, do something out of the ordinary. If you wear your hair down, try an updo; if you often wear a ponytail, leave locks to flow down your back. Wispy curls can add romance to any hairdo. If you are really ambitious, try a new shade or add some highlights.

Despite the large wardrobes that most women have, the amount of clothing they actually wear is small. Look through some of those items that got pushed to the back of the closet. Maybe there’s that little black dress you forgot about that you wore on your first date. Does he have a favorite outfit that you don’t usually wear, but could surprise him with? And don’t forget about shoes! High heels give you a feminine confidence and make legs appear sleek and long, something he is sure to notice.

A study conducted by Kelton Research of 600 men determined the high importance of a kiss-worthy mouth. A beautiful, white smile is one of the first things partners find attractive in one another and nearly half of the men surveyed stressed that white teeth are a deciding factor for a second date. It’s easy to keep smiles bright with Crest Whitestrips Premium. Use them just twice a day for 30 minutes and start to see results after just three days, with full results in seven. They’re perfect for men and women alike who don’t want to spend a lot of money. So pucker-up and give your sweetie a whiter, more kissable smile this Valentine’s Day.

The finishing touches to your look are in the details. For example, jewelry with a little sparkle can add glamour to your look and dangle earrings can draw more attention to your face. Maybe there’s something special he’s given you that you can wear. Make sure you smell delicious by lightly spraying on his favorite perfume. Polish with a bit of makeup. Try dark smoky eyes for an exotic, mysterious look. A glossy lipstick will add to your already beautiful smile.

This Valentine’s Day, don’t fret over what gift to give your special guy. Give him what he loves above anything else…you! He will be surprised at your new romantic look and impressed that you went through all the effort just for him (we won’t tell him that you didn’t mind all the work). For more information on a gorgeous white smile, visit www.whitestrips.com.

Courtesy of ARA Content

January 26, 2007

Teenagers and dads – The “Teens Don’t Like Adults” Myth

As a father of two teenage daughters (15 and 17) I have continually heard the comment that goes something along the lines of “Whoa, that’s a tough age. I guess you’ll get to talk to them again in six years!”

I have also run into numerous dads (moms too) that say, “Yeah, my kids don’t even want to be around me these days. They are so into their friends.”

The first comment is a myth. The second is a cop out.

Granted, teenagers want their independence, but they still want their parents in their lives. More on this later.

What I believe happens is that parents get intimidated and busy and stop taking the time to ask children simple, conversational questions about their lives.

Nothing can be more intimidating than walking into a room of seven teenagers talking about music or anything, and feeling completely outnumbered, out-cultured, and out of sorts. It is easier to walk away than say, “What’s going on?” It is easier to walk away than ask that new pimply-faced boy you haven’t seen before, “Where do you go to school? “How are the grades going? Where did you go to middle school?” This starts the dialogue. Walk into the teenage fray we must. Take a deep breath, walk in, and ask away!

Let’s face it: we parents are human beings too. And half the time these kid’s parents have stopped talking to them and their teachers are basically time police. You may be the first adult who has asked them a considered question in the last month. People, even teenagers, love to talk about themselves. So if you give them half a chance they will. You can become an oasis of freedom to talk about themselves. This goes for your own children as well. It doesn’t have to be an interrogation. Just a question about school, about a friend, about music. You don’t have to be cool or “in the know.” “Who is that group? Are they popular?” You don’t have to know that Eminem is back with Kim. The key, I believe, is to not give up on the initial push back – or non-push back in the case of teenagers. They won’t be forthcoming. They won’t answer. They may shrug and say “Oh, nothing.” But believe me they want to talk. They are dying to talk. Even if they don’t.

Some how to’s:

1. Be the house they can come to. Let kids gather at your house. Anytime.

2. Food. Have lots of food. Kids (especially boys) love food. Don’t take, “I’m not hungry,” for an answer. Teenagers are always hungry. Food is the lubricant for talk.

3. Don’t be judgmental. I am not saying to let them have drugs in your house. But don’t let the disapproval of a little tattoo or funky hair on your kids friends show on your face.

4. In and out. Don’t hover. Come in, ask a few questions. Then get out. Let them breath.

5. Rules are OK. I like to keep them reciprocal. I respect you. You respect me is my favorite. I don’t talk to you that way, you don’t talk to me that way.

One last word on kids wanting you in their lives: Have you ever met a thirty year old that said, “I sure wish my parents hadn’t been in my life when I was a teenager.” I haven’t. Mostly we hear the opposite. Kids might be confused, they might even be angry. They may even be embarrassed by you – but then again everyone’s parents are an embarrassment. But, you are like the old best friend that you haven’t seen in ten years. Even though they would never tell you, your kids want to see you and most importantly, talk to you.

“Teens Don’t Like Adults” is a Myth. Don’t buy into it.

For more assistance on dad teen relations, please visit: http://www.greatdad.com
Author is an expert author for kids related advices. You can contact anytime for kids or parenting related issues.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nalini_Niraj

January 25, 2007

Names I Don’t Like, And Why

This is a really funny post from Jane Copland at Drivl about names she doesn’t like. All about western names and not Indian names, but still a must-read.

Here’s a summary:

# Jenny: Jenny is the rosy cheeked, fat girl who likes to dance.
# Jenn: Jenn will try to kill herself. I’ve known two Jenns; both attempted suicide and one succeeded.
# Taylor: As a girl, Taylor is a nasty bitch. As a guy, he wears pink Lacoste polo shirts and loves himself way too much.
# Raquelle: Raquelle is seventeen and knocked up.
# Rachelle: Begins with “rash.” Aside from this, is exactly the same as Raquelle.
# Lindy: The most boring, personality-void, toneless shit of a name.
# Amanda: Friends ruined this for me. She’s a man, duh.

Names I Don’t Like

Ravi Jayagopal

January 23, 2007

How To Prevent Getting A Cold This Winter

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Acute viral nasopharyngitis, also called as the common cold, is a mild viral infection of the nose and throat. A cold is accompanied by its best friends: sneezing, sniffling, runny nose, nasal congestion, cough and sore throat. A cold is the most common human disease, and can typically last three to five days. Children and parents are the ones who are usually infected the most, largely because of the physical interaction between kids at school, and because avoiding physical proximity with a sick child is almost impossible for a parent.

So, how can you avoid getting a cold, or other flu causing viruses? Here are a few tips for keeping that cold at a foot’s length:

  • Avoid touching things that may have been infected.
  • Use a paper napkin to open/close bathroom door knobs (especially in public rest rooms)
  • Use the back of your hand to flip light switches
  • Sneeze into your elbows instead of into the palm of your hands
  • Avoid touching others’ keyboard, mouse and phone

Ultimately, the only way to avoid a cold is to avoid physical or close contact with those who are infected, and avoid touching potentially infected objects. Anti-bacterial soaps work well against common house-hold germs, but prove to be no good against neutralizing the cold virus.

How to blow your nose
Yes, there is a right way, and a wrong way to do even the simplest of things – like blowing your nose. The best way to blow your nose is t keep one of the nostrils open, while gently blowing out through the other. Blowing too hard, or blowing while keeping both nostrils open, could result in putting too much pressure on your ear drums and sinuses, and might even cause the infection to be pushed into the ears or sinus, thus leading to an ear or sinus infection.

Is there a cure?
The common cold, caused by frequently mutating viruses, makes medication or immunization impractical and ineffective. Also, because a virus need a “host” (you) in order to multiply, and cannot multiply on their own, and because anti-biotics work only on bacteria and not viruses, doctors usually leave the cure to your body’s immune system.

However, there are some things you can do to feel better sooner than later:

  • Keep your body hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  • Get plenty of rest – stay home if possible.
  • Try to avoid public places if possible to prevent infecting others
  • Take pain and fever reducing medication like Acetaminophen or Ibuprofen.

– Ravi Jayagopal
Warning: The materials in this web site are in no way intended to replace the professional medical care, advice, diagnosis or treatment of a doctor. The web site does not have answers to all problems. Answers to specific problems may not apply to everyone. If you notice medical symptoms or feel ill, you should consult your doctor.