Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Surf's Up: Relaxation for Teens

Surf's Up

Our newest resource for teens is available now.

Here's a sneak peek at what's inside:

Here's what you'll get:

~ 19 pages of therapeutic-strength support and guidance to help tweens/teens relax, calm down and reduce stress. Teens with less stress can sleep better, learn better and behave better. WIN, WIN, WIN!

~ 6 stress-busing activities that are appropriate for tweens/teens ages 12 and up.

~ Printables with directions. On some of the activities, we also provide you with alternative ideas on how to use the handouts. We leave the actual printable void of directions, so you can add your own twist whenever you'd like!

~ BONUS MP3: 1 hour of "Surf Sounds" MP3 for relaxation.

~ All delivered to you via a link to Dropbox for ease of opening and accessing your resource.  You'll use this again and again. It's appropriate year round! Yesiree, even when the wind is howling and the snow is blowing! That's the best time to take a "mental vacation" to the beach!


 NOW 40% OFF
through Saturday, 5/23/15
@ 10 pm EDT.

Just $15.00 NOW,
but will retail for $25.00.

Add to Cart


It includes a BONUS MP3: Surf's Up
An hour-long relaxation MP3
of Surf Sounds.

Add to Cart

Sneak peek of what's inside:

You can only get here, using the link below! Like our recent resource for kids, Calm Down Kids at the Beach, this workbook is filled with 6 activities to support stress management and relaxation, specifically designed for the tween/teen population.

Add to Cart


This resource will retail for $25.00
but you can get it NOW, at 

40% OFF!
You won't find this available
anywhere else right now!

JUST $15.00

until Saturday, May 23th
@10pm EDT

Add to Cart
(This is an instant download product.
No physical product will be shipped.
A link will be delivered to the email from
which your payment originated.)

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Lighthouse Crafts and Activities for Kids

Lighthouse Crafts and Activities

Lighthouses are a wonderful thing to read about, study and learn more about during the summer months.  Here, we've assembled some great crafts, activities, reads and ideas that you can add to your summer fun.  Use these ideas in class, at camp, at daycare, in scouting and more! 

1: Create these fun lighthouses by following the directions found HERE.

2: Create this cute lighthouse by using these directions HERE.

3: Find coloring pages HERE.

4: Find more coloring pages HERE.

5: Try these cuties out by going HERE.

BONUS: Find out how to make a lighthouse sandwich HERE.

Need a Beacon of Light for Parenting {and Teaching}? 

(Sometimes we just do....and this can help.)

Find Your Beacon of Light HERE

More Summer Fun with a Purpose 

Our newest Kidlutions resources help young children through teens deal with stress! Teach them while they're young, and this skill will last a lifetime!

For children ages 3-12 try:

For Teens ages 13-up try:

Media preview

(This one's more than 50% off NOW through Weds 5.19.15)

#BloomParenting: A Beacon of Light for Parenting and Teaching

Don't Get Lost at Sea

If you're feeling lost at sea sometimes when it comes to dealing with common early childhood behaviors (biting, sassing, tantrums, aggressiveness, sleep troubles, anxiety, anger and MORE), give BLOOM: 50 Things to Say Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids a try. Like a beacon of light to a lost ship, this book can help you find your way back to the family you always dreamed you would have. BLOOM can help you get out of damage control with your kids and into a relationship with them that makes them want to behave.

Expert Help

In this book, you'll receive expert help from two clinicians who are moms first (Dr. Lynne Kenney and yours truly) and who have consulted to early childhood programs. We'll teach you the why's behind challenging behaviors, then we give you the thoughts to help yourself calm down and the exact words you can use (or tweak) to help move your child towards more skillful behavior quicker.'ll get exclusive videos that go with each chapter, that you access online with a QR code from the book.

IN'll get printable mantras that you can cut right out of the book (or download and print from online), to hang on your fridge, bulletin board or bathroom mirror...wherever you need more support or assistance. (Some have told us this alone was more than worth the price of the book.)

AND...we cover some of the toughest topics not usually covered in parenting books: helping kids cope with trauma and grief. We hope you don't need those chapters, but if you do, the guidance will be so helpful and available on the spot.

Stop Drifting

If you are merely drifting along and find yourself in a reactive mode...waiting for the next big wave of behavior to knock you down or pull you under, take note and take heart: BLOOM can help! The strategies offered in BLOOM have been used with thousands of kids in homes, classrooms and daycare settings. With techniques that can help even the most intense kids, imagine what BLOOM can do for your child, your family or your classroom. Get back on course.

From Tots to Teens

The book is in full color and features the latest neuroscience and best practices in early childhood. Have teens in the house? No worries...the techniques in this book apply to well as to pretty much every other human relationship you can imagine. If your kids are tots now, start using BLOOM as they grow and enjoy a closer relationship with them as teens and beyond.

BLOOM, the book that can change everything!
Read it now and start using the strategies five minutes later.
It's the book both Lynne and I wished we had when our kids were young!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: Resources That Help

Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: 
Resources That Help

In a recent post, we shared about trauma-driven behavior in children in kinship care and about building in resilience.  There are challenges and opportunities that abound in kinship care arrangements and grandparents (and other kinship parents) often have many questions.

We'd like to share some resources from around the web, that can get you started in finding the answers you seek.  

If you know of extra resources we might wish to add, please leave them in the comments.

In no particular order, here are your resources:

Grandparenting resources from 

Grandparenting resources from Western Michigan University

Here's a state by state listing of resources available to grandparents raising grandchildren:

Go HERE to see the resources.

Internet resources:

Go HERE to find internet resources.

Legal Issues:

Go HERE to find legal resources.

Information from AARP:

Go HERE to get information from AARP.

Raising Competent Children:
With Grief and Trauma in Mind

Parenting your grandchildren can take loads of patience and proven way to communicate, discuss and handle some of the tougher spots. This is particularly true in light or trauma and grief issues that often come when parenting grandchildren or being a kin provider/parent.  BLOOM can be a great support to you, by helping you understand the developmental and neurobiological underpinnings that lie beneath some behaviors and then showing you the best way to respond to and support children.

You can find all of Kidlutions' products to help raise incredible kids HERE.'

As always, from Kidlutions, we wish you happy {grand}parenting and teaching,

Monday, May 11, 2015

Calm Down for Kids at the Beach

Skills Change Lives

Do you know a kid with over-the-top feelings and behaviors? Teaching kids to calm down goes a long way towards helping them learn to manage it all.  Summer is coming and that makes it a great time to help kids gain these skills that will help them in just about every life situation imaginable.

Limbic or Logic

The limbic system is the seat of our emotional brain and it doesn't function on logic.   When the limbic system is in full gear, you'll see the out-of-control, over-the-top behaviors that can be so challenging to deal with. We need our neocortexes to help mediate it all.  The only problem is, when emotions are like runaway freight trains, the neocortex has a hard time reining it all in because it goes "offline" when our fight, flight or freeze response kicks in.  So, how do we help the limbic system calm down so the neocortex can do its job?

Strategies Enhance Coping

Learning new strategies and coping tools (like relaxation and mindfulness) is one of the most useful ways to help kids restore their equilibrium, so they can get back to the business of happy, healthy living!  We all want that...for our kids and for ourselves.  If you're a parent and you struggle with regulating your own emotions, you just might find that the techniques offered in Calm Down Kids and the Beach work like a charm for you, as well!


PLUS you get this 1 hour MP3 BONUS:

So many of you have already taken advantage of this offer and I'm tickled that several of you have emailed to let me know how you're using it:

~ Summer programs in the schools
~ In counseling offices
~ In daycare centers
~ In School-Based Health Centers

Here's what you'll get:

~ 25 pages of therapeutic-strength support and guidance to help kids relax, calm down and reduce stress. Kids with less stress can sleep better, learn better and behave better. WIN, WIN, WIN!

~ 6 stress-busing activities that are appropriate for kids ages 3-12

~ A breakdown of how to use this resource with younger kids and older kids. We also supply you with two sets of printables, where necessary (one for older kids/one for younger kids).

~ BONUS MP3: 1 hour of "Sand and Surf" sounds for relaxation.

~ All delivered to you via a link to Dropbox for ease of opening and accessing your resource.  You'll use this again and again. It's appropriate year round! 

Here's a quick recap:

We think you're going to LOVE it!

JUST $25.00
(but to work on these activities in a therapy office 

could end up costing over $1,000.00)

(This is an instant download product.
No physical product will be shipped.
Immediately after purchase, 

you will receive a link to download.)

Add to Cart

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Trauma-Driven Behavior: Resilience and Hope

Note: The information shared in this post is for informational and educational purposes only. It does not constitute professional care. Professional care can only be delivered in professional setting between a therapist and a client or a client system, after sufficient evaluation and development of a treatment plan. If you are dealing with challenging life situations, please seek a referral for professional care from your family physician.

A grandparent recently wrote in:

"Hi! We very recently became legal guardians of our 5 year old grandson. He has spent every weekend since birth with us but when mom went to jail in January, he came here full time. Mom is now out of jail but can't handle all of her kids so asked us to keep our grandson with us. He visits her two nights a week. He doesn't understand why he can't be with mom and has been acting out. His dad, our son, has been around a lot more but isn't prepared to be a full time parent economically or otherwise either. Our grandson’s teacher sent us to your site and said you had some great info. After digging around a bit, I just don't know where to start. Our situation seems to flow between several different topics. Any suggestions on a good starting point for us? Thank you! I would very much appreciate your addressing the issue on your blog! The information I have gleaned from your site and blog has been excellent. If you need any other info, please don't hesitate to call or email. Thank you so much Wendy."
             ~Grandparent providing kinship care

Dear grandparent,

Thank you for being there for your grandchild. 

You are not alone. With nearly 2.5 million children in kinship care, these types of arrangements are more prevalent than you may think. I have been honored to work with multiple families where grandparents are raising grandchildren.

There are no easy answers to the complexities that comprise kinship care, particularly in the situation for which you are seeking assistance.  There are multiple issues that contribute to what your grandson is likely experiencing now. 

Relational Trauma

First and foremost, we need to pay attention to and honor the fact that this young child has experienced a relational trauma. In its simplest terms, a relational trauma is much like it sounds. For our purposes, a traumatic experience has unfolded in the context of a primary attachment relationship. What comprises relational trauma is as varied as families are themselves.  In some cases, it may be abuse, neglect, emotional or physical abandonment and more. I've see this put very eloquently in one post from Empowered to Connect:
"No child becomes available for adoption or enters foster care unless something has gone wrong, terribly so.  Those who gave life to this child, those who were supposed to take care of him, those who were supposed to be there to protect him, teach him, and support him either couldn’t, wouldn’t, or didn’t.  And so one of the most foundational and important of all earthly relationships – that of parent and child – was broken or severed."
Magical Thinking and More

Granted, there are always extenuating circumstances that lead to children not being able to be with their biological parents, but when an attachment relationship has been formed and then it is severed or damaged, we cannot expect that children will not have a reaction to it. In your grandson's case, it may be that the child sees his biological mom two nights a week, but this still constitutes a break from the child's prior routine and life. It still registers as an abandonment to his little heart and soul. The fact that other children remain with their biological mom may further complicate the situation for this child. Particularly at this age, when egocentricity and magical thinking lead children into thinking that events around them happen because of them. "If I were smarter, better looking, happier, better behaved, worthy, special, mom wouldn't have to get in trouble and go away." Not being able to be with mom once she was released from jail may reinforce this kind of thinking. These are not sentiments the child will consciously be able to verbalize, but they are underlying forces that may fuel some of the behavior you are seeing and will need to be addressed professionally. Additionally, there may be circumstances and situations this child has been exposed to prior to mom's incarceration that contribute to a series of multiple traumas this child may have been exposed to.

Don't Go It Alone

This is not something you can be expected to handle on your own and not something the child will simply outgrow. The behavior is the outgrowth of the emotional pain that bubbles beneath the surface. My recommendation is that you start with your family physician and ask for a good referral to an early childhood clinician who is qualified and licensed and also understands attachment and trauma. This can go a long way towards helping your grandson process his overwhelming and difficult feelings.

Trauma Triggers

Children experiencing relational trauma may be triggered by seemingly innocuous stimuli and events that make absolutely no sense to observers. These are called trauma triggers and can be a sound, a smell, an experience, a song, etc.  It is important to know that these children need empathy and support to work through these BIG feelings. A child cannot be "talked out of" or "punished out of" these acting out behaviors. 

Building in Resilience

Children can heal, and there are many ways to promote resilience in traumatized children. A qualified clinician can be a major support to both the child and the caregiver.  A thorough evaluation will be conducted to determine what will best support this child and what interventions will be most meaningful.

Resources That Can Help

One thing you will want to do at home is help your grandson process feelings. That will go a long way towards supporting him in coping. Processing feelings as they arise is just one part of the equation. A therapist can help the child with some of the deeper issues that are troubling to the child with some specific interventions aimed at ameliorating trauma. Here are some resources you can find on our blog to help with BIG feelings at home:

(This links to many more posts on helping kids deal with feelings. Poke around a bit.)

Angry Kids: Over a Dozen Ways to Help
(This also links to many more posts.)

In Closing

This is an oversimplified response to a challenging life circumstance, but it is a start. I would urge you to get more support and assistance to help this child cope with the changes in his life, as well as the circumstances that have led up to it. 

All good wishes to you and your grandson. 

Stay Tuned

Stay tuned, because we'll give you some more resources in general for grandparents who are parenting their grandchildren in our next post. 

More Help

You may also wish to check out BLOOM: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids. In BLOOM, we have an entire chapter dedicated specifically to traumatized children and more tips about how to help them thrive.

Bloom gives you a proven approach to help work around the defensive brain, teach skill-building and coping and help children move towards prosocial behavior more quickly than punishment ever could. Filled with hundreds of printable mantras that calm the emotional brain and set the stage for stronger relationships and improved behavior. Here's one small example:

When you combine what you say with the powerful thinking and doing strategies, you are well on your way to helping kids become the best version of themselves. Best of all, you'll do it while maintaining your own composure and balance. You are going to love the change it brings to your family! Find it HERE!

To help kids learn relaxation and mindfulness, TRY THIS.

Hope is on the horizon.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Be a Bloomer and WIN: The Inside Scoop on #BloomParenting

Be a Bloomer

You want to be a parent who is calm, cool and collected, yet the realities of the day-in, day-out grind... sinks full of dishes, toys strewn across the living room floor, plumbing that's backed up, tantrums, sibling rivalry, sassing and MORE sometimes has you singing the blues...and blowing your top!

Dr. Kenney and I have been there. Boy, have we ever! And as researchers and clinicians, we know the way out! We know the way to a more peaceful and serene inner-dialogue that changes your brain and your heart...and the very way you feel, so you can pass that along to your kids. BLOOM is the way, and it's coming. It's going to make a splash on May 5, 2015...just days away...and we hope that inside you will find the key to unlock a brighter, calmer, happier future for yourself and for your children. We know it works when you apply it! 

Get a Head Start

Want to dig in and take a peek?  We'd love for you to do so! When you contact me here and put BLOOMER in the subject line, we'll email you a Bloom Sampler that gives you a taste of what Bloom is all about. We are happily sharing this excerpt from the book with you because we strive to help others create strong, happy, less conflicted families.

Let Us Know What You Think

In exchange, we'd love it if you would give us a nod by sharing what you LIKE/LOVE about what you saw in Bloom on twitter, facebook, pinterest, your blog, google plus...just about anywhere you hang out online!

Hashtag it with #bloomparenting during the month of May and enter on Rafflecopter daily (see form below) to win an autographed copy of BLOOM, plus get a half-hour consult with me (Wendy Young) regarding helping you implement and be successful with the BLOOM strategies! You are so going to rock this! Just reach out to me HERE to get your free sampler and get started! Put BLOOMER in the subject line!

We'll be giving a handful copies (with the 1/2 hour consult) away at the end of the month.  (Total retail value is $150.00) Can't wait to win a book because you want to buy one now and start using it? No worries! Go for it and you can use one to gift to a friend! Sharing is caring. You'll still get your half-hour consult with me to get you Blooming in no time! You can ask me any question in relationship to getting your family blooming. No question's too big, no question's too small! 

Here's a Quick and Easy Way to Keep Track 

Simply bookmark this page and come back daily to update your entries and're done! Easy-peasey lemon squeezie...I want to give you BLOOM! You can earn up to 5 points a day, if you participate in each option. Have fun! We can't wait to see what you come up with!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enjoy! I cannot wait to see your creativity!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

A Petal In My Pocket: Build Relationships with #PetalPower

Put A Petal In Your Pocket: #PetalPower

(Special thanks to Dr. Lynne Kenney for conceptualizing and spearheading this lovely activity!)

If there is one thing we have learned in our families, it is that loving communication improves our relationships.  But sometimes we are not sure what to say or do to tell someone “I appreciate you” in a meaningful way.  With our new "Bloom Petals", you can say something special to anyone anytime.

We are encouraging expressions of love with #BloomParenting #PetalPower. We’d like to see thousands of families share words of gratitude, love and interaction by exchanging petals. You can also adapt this to use in your classroom.

You can download this free printable for inspiration:

Get your copy HERE

How do you use your #PetalPower?  

Simply download our FREE #PetalPower template to exchange petals of love with your family members.   Cut out a petal, write any message of love or fill-in one of our #PetalPower quotes and give it to someone you love, including your mother, grandmother or child.

Your family could even make a #PetalPower Flower together sharing individual petals with another.  Your classroom could adapt this activity to share kindness! The garden has no limit, let your creativity be the guide. Carrying the cherished words of your mother, father, child, classmate or loved one all day, perhaps even in your pocket, builds strength, confidence and connection, with those you love.

         For FAMILY USE

“You’re the petal in my pocket.”
“I love that I take you everywhere with me. All I need to do is think of you as the petal in     
  my pocket.”
“I love you because __________________.”
“When you _____________________ I feel loved by you.”
“My favorite thing we do together is _________________.”
“When you ______________ I appreciate you even more.”


Challenge your class to find kind things to say to each other and exchange them on petals. Create a bulletin board as a reminder of all the good cheer that is shared amongst and between classmates.

"You make me happy when __________________."
"I really appreciate when____________________."
"You are so good at________________________."
"You tried so hard to_______________________."

Let’s share meaningful messages of love and kindness with #PetalPower.

Contact:  Wendy Young and Lynne Kenney 

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