The joys of stress-free parenting

by KidSnips

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We’ve got some ideas to simplify your summer and make parenting less stressful. Like getting a $10 buzz cut at KidSnips to make your mornings easier.

Ice cold popsicles. Their first swimming lesson. Making s’mores over the fire. Endless time playing in the sun. These are the best parts of summer, and the parts you’ll remember the most.

But what about the things you don’t want to remember? Like all the time you spent in the car shuttling your kids from one activity to the next. Or the temper tantrum they threw when you were getting them dressed for that first swimming lesson. Or maybe the time they let their cherry red popsicle drip all over their brand new bathing suit.

It’s easy for summer to become more stressful than fun. But this should be a time to make memories with your family—not exhaust yourself trying to manage it all. So we’ve got some tips to help you stress less this summer season.

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Don’t expect perfection.

In Glennon Doyle’s article entitled “Don’t Carpe Diem,” she says, “Everywhere I go, someone is telling me to seize the moment, raise my awareness, be happy, enjoy every second…I felt guilty because I wasn’t in parental ecstasy every hour of every day and I wasn’t MAKING THE MOST OF EVERY MOMENT like the mamas in the parenting magazines seemed to be doing.”

We love our kids so much that we want each and every moment of their lives to be full of meaning, learning, and beauty. Instagram and Pinterest are constantly telling us our kids won’t grow up to be awesome unless we provide them with the best of the best. The healthiest food, the most effective extracurriculars, the most exciting activities. None of these things are bad on their own. Of course we want our kids to be as healthy and smart as they can. But the reality is—the goals we set for ourselves and our children are often unrealistic.

As difficult as it is—we need to let go of “do it perfect” expectations and let ourselves relax. Not every moment will be perfect. It’s ok if your child has a meltdown on your well-planned vacation. It’s ok if they have an extra slice of cake just this once. And it’s ok if you have an extra slice, too.

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Avoid helicopter parenting.

Many of us are a little too familiar with this term, either because we have helicopter parents or because we have friends with helicopter parents. These parents want to be involved in every detail of their kids’ lives—even if their kids don’t want them to be. They’re the parents that argue with teachers about bad grades or plot out a 20-year plan for their child and make sure they’re sticking to it.

But according to this video from The Atlantic, “Kids have to be able to make their own mistakes growing up. Life is about having confidence that if you took the wrong path, you can get on the right path. That if you fall down, you can get back up.”

Our kids have to do things outside of our watch sometimes. They have to learn their own lessons, make their own mistakes, and figure out how to recover from those mistakes. While the world may seem scary and unmanageable sometimes, we need to give our kids that space to grow. So this summer, try to let go of some control and trust that your kids will figure it out. Maybe you could let them make cookies without your help (even if it’s just pre-made cookie dough that they have to place on a cookie sheet) or let them create and hang flyers around the neighborhood offering their dog walking services. It’s ok to be there for them when things don’t go as planned or they get frustrated.

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Take it slow.

Many of us aren’t raising children—we’re raising busy little bees. It’s summer, you say? Great, I’ll enroll them in four classes and three sports with a side of regularly weekly playdates, please.

This constant busy-ness seems to be a symptom specific to American parenting. We want our kids to grow up to get good jobs that help them buy nice houses, so we’re spending their childhood stuffing them with as many hobbies and as much knowledge as we can.

But this isn’t actually as healthy as it sounds. Activities are valuable, but breaking up those activities with plenty of downtime is good for kids. It gives them time to think and process their experiences and to let their minds wander as they develop their creativity and imagination. Cutting out a few activities to make time for rest will make life less stressful for both you and your kids.

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Go for the buzz cut.

And one activity you might want to cut out is all that time it takes to clean and brush your kids’ hair. Your kids will be playing and sweating and getting dirty this summer, and buzz cuts are a great way to make clean up a piece of cake—and to get rid of the “ouch!” of detangling altogether. So this month, we’re offering $10 buzz cuts to make summer a little easier.

Note: Offer applies to buzz cuts only and cannot be applied to scissor cuts. Offer valid from July 1–31, 2019. Not valid with any other offers.