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Practising Mindful Eating with Lynette Bolton

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Practising Mindful Eating with Lynette Bolton

Lynette Carroll Bolton from Love LCB is sharing her top tips for practising mindful eating.   As I am writing this blog my two gorgeous girls are sitting at the bench enjoying a snack. My little one, two years old, is going at it a million miles an hour. Apple is being stuffed into her mouth, there’s fidgeting and arms flailing around whilst she tries to share a story. Her mouth is certainly finding it hard to keep up with her thoughts. In stark contrast my five year old is eating slowly and deliberately, concentrating on each mouthful. This is quite intentional, and in fact she loves to tell me when she is ‘eating mindfully like the Monks’. The Monks she is referring to are the Gyuto Monks who visited Australia last year. I took Siarra to one of their workshops on ‘Mindful Eating’. Since that workshop she has noticeably slowed down her eating and become more focused.   What is Mindful Eating? Mindful eating is the process of taking the time to listen to what your body is telling you about hunger and food satisfaction. In this day and age when everything is done at a squillion miles an hour, we must bring intention to our eating. We need to pay attention to how food makes us feel both during and after a meal. By doing so, we are able to develop a happier, healthier, more conscious and deliberate relationship with food.  Not to mention allowing us to enjoy what we are eating ten fold!   It is actually incredibly easy and quite enjoyable. Next time you are having a meal take the time to sit down and actually experience your meal. Touch your food, smell your food, feel the food in your mouth and actually experience what it tastes like in your mouth. And if a whole meal sounds too much for this then you can always start with something more manageable – for one minute or fifteen mouthfuls for example.   Why not try this with a scoop of gelato? Experience the way it melts in your mouth, how it smells, it’s texture and creaminess. It is the perfect afternoon sweet treat to practice mindful eating with the kids. Lynette Carroll Bolton is a television and radio presenter, wedding and events planner, wellness entrepreneur and blogger and most importantly mumma to beautiful Siarra and Piper! You can find Lynette at lovelcb.com or on Instagram @lovelcb_ and facebook.  Photography by Lynette Carroll...

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Mindful Parenting and How to Make a Mindful Home

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Mindful Parenting and How to Make a Mindful Home

Lynette Carroll Bolton from Love LCB has stopped by the Greenwood blog to share tips on how we can bring the art of mindfulness into our parenting.  What is mindfulness?  Mindfulness is a term that we hear used all the time in our ever increasingly health and wellness focused society. In fact, it is quite difficult to open a magazine, turn on the TV or read a health and wellness blog without learning about the latest mindfulness technique taking the world by storm.   To me, mindfulness is the art of being in the current moment. It is about being 150% in the here and now, not worrying about what has happened in the past or thinking about what is going to happen in the future. To be mindful is the art of being aware of what is happening both internally and externally. We have to be able to acknowledge our current situation without passing any judgment whatsoever on what is happening.   When putting this into practice as a parent, and in turn fostering mindful parenting, we can create an environment for our kids filled with self compassion, self acceptance and self awareness. And, as with most behaviours viewed by kids, the more we can showcase this skill ourselves the more our little ones will mirror our conduct.   Some of my favourite ways to bring mindfulness into my parenting and at home include: Putting my phone down, switching off the TV and unplugging the iPad. It is so easy to waste hours on end with technology. These days I make a conscious effort to get my screen time in when the little ones are out or in bed. Establishing a regular family mindfulness practice. This can be as easy as sitting together and undertaking breathing exercises. Even just for a minute or two. Being able to sit still and breath is not only an amazing stress relief for both big and little ones it is an amazingly simply mindfulness technique that you can do together as a family. Going for a walk in the garden, lying in the grass and watching the clouds or just sitting and listening to the birds chirping in the backyard. Be intentional and conscious of the environment around you. Feel, touch, listen, see. You’ll be amazed at how many different things you will notice. Lynette Carroll Bolton is a television and radio presenter, wedding and events planner, wellness entrepreneur, blogger and most importantly mumma to beautiful Siarra and Piper! You can find Lynette at lovelcb.com or on Instagram @lovelcb_ and facebook.  Photography by Lynette Carroll...

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Create Calm, Caring and Mindful Children

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Create Calm, Caring and Mindful Children

Our Greenwood Yogi, Beth Borowsky has stopped by the blog to share how we can bring mindful practices into the lives of our little ones at home.  Mindfulness – or learning how to focus your attention on the present moment – is a big buzz phenomenon amongst adults and even school-aged children. But did you know that kids as young as 3 can be taught mindfulness techniques too?   Having taught kids yoga for 12 years, I am constantly humbled and heartened by their abilities to get quiet and focus their attention on their breath and body movements. It may just be for a minute or ninety seconds, but the calm attention is profound, and lays the foundations for being more in touch with how their body feels.  It allows for deeper sensorial experiences (using their senses to explore), understanding more about how they feel emotionally and, as importantly, how others feel.   Cultivating empathy and compassion from such a young age gives kids the social and emotional tools to support their learning and to manage their stress, making them more rounded individuals who are willing to care and share as they learn to read and write, play and explore.   Bringing mindfulness into children’s lives is something the KarmaKidsYoga team does with your children during their yoga sessions. If you’d like to cultivate mindfulness with your child in your own home, why not try these fun activities: Belly Breathing Lie your child down on their back somewhere comfortable – bed, couch, in the garden. Place their favourite soft toy (like a beanie baby) on their belly. Invite them to breathe in through their nose for a count of 3, and out for a count of 3. Watching how their toy rises as they inhale and falls as they exhale. You can increase the count to 5 or 6 with practice. Start with just 5 deep breaths and slowly build to 10 or more. A Mindful Walk  Take a silent and slow stroll together through the park. Before you begin the silent walk, decide that you’re going to either: Listen out for different sounds Notice the different coloured flowers Notice different smells Feel different textures under your feet Mindful Munching  Let your child choose their favourite food and have them eat it really really slowly. Being mindful to notice the taste, the texture, the colour, or the temperature. Beth Borowsky has a Masters in Early Childhood & Montessori Preschool Teaching and is a Certified Yoga Teacher, Kids Yoga Teacher and Yoga Teacher Trainer. The incredible team of KarmaKidsYoga are dedicated to bringing yoga and mindfulness to children’s lives, equipping them with tools to make them feel good, both inside and...

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Top 10 Wellbeing Tips for Mums

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Top 10 Wellbeing Tips for Mums

Rhiannon Colarossi from The Wellbeing Web shares with us practical tips on how to manage the everyday challenges. Raising young children can be a wonderful experience, filled with joy however it often also comes with daily challenges and feelings of exhaustion and overwhelm. The following wellbeing tips are a great starting point for mums wanting to boost how they feel each day as they raise their young children.   Value your Wellbeing. Choose to make feeling good a priority. Consistently check-in with, nurture and celebrate your wellbeing each and everyday.   Gain Clarity. Explore and become clear on how you are really doing in all 5 dimensions of wellbeing. It’s a wonderful starting point that helps you identify which dimension most needs your attention.   The 5 Wellbeing Dimensions Be Present. Focus your time and energy in the present moment as much as possible (it can be so easy to get distracted). Be conscious about your little daily choices and make time to enjoy the everyday moments.   Monitor your Self Talk. Be aware of the way you talk to yourself. Are you talking to yourself with love and kindness? Be mindful of your inner-talk and check in regularly to ensure your tone is positive.   Embrace Self Kindness. Being kind to yourself is essential. Treat yourself as you would a good friend and be self-compassionate whilst being on the journey of motherhood.   Nurture your Relationships. As a mum, your social wellbeing is invaluable. Invest your love, time and energy in your most cherished and supportive relationships.   Schedule Rest. Incorporate mini breaks into your day. For example; Carve out time to enjoy a cup of tea before you start the household chores.   Play Everyday. Give yourself permission to play and make time for fun. Play is often undervalued but is such a precious gift to yourself and your family. Embrace light-heartedness.   Start Positively. Begin your day with a PAP (Positive Action Plan). As soon as you wake, ask yourself these three questions… How do I want to feel today? What am I grateful for? What are my top 3 priorities? The PAP helps you to set the tone for your day.   Forgive Quickly. Let go of mini mistakes and make better choices next time. Self-criticism is a waste of your precious time and energy. Celebrate and acknowledge the good in each day. VALUE, NURTURE & CELEBRATE YOUR WELLBEING…EVERYDAY! To connect with Rhiannon Colarossi and learn more effective wellbeing tools and strategies to help you feel more peaceful, even on the busiest of days visit her website...

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How to Avoid a Tech Tantrum

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How to Avoid a Tech Tantrum

Yikes. We’ve all been there – peace and quiet being broken by the unleashing of the pint sized tech-obsessed tantrum monster. Windows shake, doors slam, empires fall…well, at least that’s what it feels like. Whilst it is somewhat reassuring to know that in this technology obsessed landscape, tech tantrums are a regular and normal part of a child’s existence, it is worthwhile knowing your child’s triggers, and what to do when the inevitable strikes. Enforce Guidelines for Tech Time Make sure that your child knows exactly what is expected of them before they pick up the device. Not only will this routine make tech time a regimented experience, but it will make your own life a little bit easier as well, taking the stress off of you. Forward planning is always the way to go in situations like this. Remember to remain consistent when enforcing your family media rules. Empower your little one Provide cues and reminders when time is about to lapse so your little one can prepare to transition away from their device. Give your child the role of switching the device off themselves when time does lapse. It is far more empowering to allow your child to take control and responsibility, as opposed to you taking the device directly from their hands. Use a clock Children are much less likely to talk back to a clock than their parents! This allows children to keep a track of the time themselves. It’s the perfect way to introduce time knowledge to your child’s education, if they are having trouble mastering it or just learning. Blame it on the clock, it works a treat. Have the next activity ready to avoid a tantrum Nothing spells the end of a brewing tantrum than having another exciting activity ready to jump into! Not only can this take the trauma out of the end of tech time, but it provides the perfect distraction for your child to refocus away from the screen and into something much more proactive. Just make sure it is something they enjoy. This can include: Outdoor time to let their eyes have a break Moving onto a more hands-on craft activity Helping out with chores Reading a book Pull out an age appropriate board game or puzzle Cooking! Have your little one lend a helping hand in the kitchen For more information on taking tantrums out of tech time, head over to Dr Kristy’s website here. Dr Kristy Goodwin is a leading children’s technology, learning and development expert, speaker and author.  Her book Raising Your Child in a Digital World arms parents with essential research-based information and helpful ways to use technology. Ditch your techno-guilt for...

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How to be a Digital Role Model for Kids

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How to be a Digital Role Model for Kids

Kids look to their parents as the go-to model for a variety of areas in their life. Not only for traditional teaching, but also social cues, body language, vocabulary and habits. With the rise in the omnipresent power of digital media, developing a healthy relationship with technology is vital. As a key tool to unwind or catch up on the world, technology’s ability to be always seen can be damaging. Greenwood’s resident children’s technology and development expert Dr Kristy Goodwin has stopped by the blog to share some tips on how we as parents can be more aware of our digital behaviour and our responsibility as digital role models. Have a device free dinner Family dinners are already an integral part of maintaining the family dynamic. We are wired to connect and in our screen-saturated world having tablets at the table only encourages distraction and disconnection. Common Sense Media notes that “Ninety-two percent of parents think quality conversations at dinnertime matter for connecting with their kids”. Screen-free dinners allow the opportunity to connect and share the things that are happening in our lives – leaving devices away from the table allows us to build those critical communication and social skills in our children.   Dr Kristy recommends having a specific landing zone for devices to stay during dinner. Perhaps on the kitchen bench top and remember to keep them on silent if you aren’t expecting an urgent call. Remember it is not just our digital reliance on mobile devices at the dinner table, but TVs too. The Pew Research Center found that 34% of families said that the TV was on for all or most dinners. Go for quality of media, not quantity Ensure that the media your child engages with is balanced. Don’t count every minute they are online, instead the time they spend should be on a mixture of fun and educationally rich activities or apps. As Dr Kristy says, “children need moderation not abstinence when it comes to technology”. Set clear boundaries Whilst every family dynamic is different, it is essential we strike the right balance between family time and screen time. As parents, we’re constantly concerned about the health effects screen time has on our children, yet we often fail to observe our own digital dependence.  Dr Kristy encourages us to “make sure children’s screen time doesn’t rob them of the quintessential elements of a magical childhood. They still need time to play, explore, and be creative with ample white space.” Create a healthy relationship with digital media use in the house by setting clear time limits for both you and the kids. Ensure that the time limits you create suit your family’s schedule – and stick to them! Switch off from work Nowadays we are so accessible to our jobs and more often than not are we bringing our work from the office home with us. To remain present and less distracted be sure you create boundaries for work time and family time. Use technology together Our children crave our attention! When your little one is engaging with technology be involved in what they are playing. Watch, listen, play and encourage them to behave positively online. For more information on taking the correct steps towards model digital citizen status, head over to Dr Kristy’s website here. Dr Kristy Goodwin is a leading children’s technology, learning and development expert, speaker and author.  She arms parents...

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Educator Spotlight: Meet Abigial Choi from Greenwood Homebush

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Educator Spotlight: Meet Abigial Choi from Greenwood Homebush

Abigail Choi first joined Greenwood in 2015 as a Nursery Room leader. With a Diploma of Early Childhood Education, Abigail’s hard work and dedication has been a shining example to those around her, and she is thrilled to take the next step in her Greenwood journey as the Centre Leader of Homebush! Let’s get to know Abi! My favourite weekend pastime…Family brunch! Every single Sunday, my three younger siblings and I have brunch and spend some quality time together. We never miss it! My favourite childhood memory…Going skiing in the mountains every Winter. My fussiest vegetable growing up…Avocado. Shocking I know! Luckily I’ve grown out of disliking the texture because it’s on every cafe menu nowadays! What did you want to be when you grew up…Primary School Teacher, and I don’t think I landed too far from it. What inspired you to work in Early Childhood Education? I always wanted to work in the field of education. I studied a Certificate and Diploma of Early Childhood Education, and with every subject and work placement I went through, it became evermore apparent that my real passion would lie in helping shape the next generation of children. Share something about yourself, that we may not already know! I was born and grew up in Korea, spending my childhood surrounded by Korean culture and tradition. This meant I had to learn Australian nursery rhymes, songs and books from scratch. I found this to be a really rewarding experience as I was taking steps into a new world of childhood as an adult. What do you find most rewarding working in Early Education? I feel honoured to be able to nurture and nourish a child’s development. I love the spontaneity that comes from child’s play and to see children laugh and be their absolute authentic self is so beautiful to me. What do you think is most special about Greenwood? I love how Greenwood respects each child’s individual goals, interests and strengths and tailors the G Learning Program to suit their developmental needs. As educators it’s so important to listen to a child to interpret their words, actions and feelings. It is only by listening are we able to determine a child’s needs and understand how to best aid their further development. I also love Greenwood’s approach to building healthy lifestyle habits early in life. The focus on being healthy and active can be seen in our seasonal and wholesome four week rotating menu and through Greenwood’s extra-curricular programs including Urban Gardening, Yoga and our Grow Fit Sports and Movement Program! Which G Learning Curriculum resonates most with you? G Me! This is all about developing a child’s individual sense of self, their personality, characteristics and interests. This particular G Curriculum truly helps us as educators understand each child and how they best need to be cared for. Why is learning through play so important for our little ones? Play based learning allows a child to explore, identify, negotiate, take risks, create meaning of the world around them and understand who they are. Play is absolutely essential to a child’s cognitive, social and emotional development and the quality play experiences we craft at Greenwood aim to further every child’s potential and opportunity to grow and develop. What do you love most about Greenwood Homebush? Greenwood Homebush is in a great location with easy access for all families. The centre has...

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Educator Spotlight: Meet Lauren from Greenwood Brookvale!

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Educator Spotlight: Meet Lauren from Greenwood Brookvale!

We sat down with Greenwood Brookvale’s interim Centre Leader, Lauren to get to know her and why a child’s Greenwood Early Education experience is important. Get to know…Lauren Hall! What is your educational background? I studied a Bachelor of Arts majoring in English and Communication at James Cook University, Cairns. Next, I went on to complete my Graduate Diploma of Education so that I could teach in both primary and secondary schools. After my graduation, I engaged in relief teaching, eventually I worked at an OSHC service in the Catholic Education system. Finally I moved back to the Northern Beaches to start a new career in Early Childhood Education. My first role as a Preschool Educator was in 2012 where I also started studying to receive my early childhood qualifications.    Why do you think early education is important? As UNICEF states, “research has shown that half of a person’s intelligence potential is developed by age four”. Especially due to our role as educators, we can help form the young minds of children. This can enable them to become confident and capable learners for the future. We are educating the next generation and what a difference Early Education makes in shaping our future superstars and geniuses.    What is your favourite part of being an educator? I love planning and facilitating learning experiences for the children. I get just as excited about an activity as the children do. We enjoy learning together and extending on what we already know. Parents often share that their children tell them about what they have learnt, or sing a new song that they have learnt! It is this feedback from families, which reminds me I am in right profession. Do you live by any quotes? You only get out what you put in and if you fail to prepare, prepare to...

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DIY TUTORIAL: Create a Woodland Wall Hanging

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DIY TUTORIAL: Create a Woodland Wall Hanging

DIY Tutorial: Woodland Wall Hanging If you love the idea of adding a touch of gorgeousness to your child’s bedroom, playroom or nursery every now and again but the thought of DIY makes you quiver, you are in for a real treat! Lisa Tilse, Greenwood’s resident crafter is here to help make some super easy changes to a space in your house that needs a little spruce!  This sweet little wallhanging will look lovely in any child’s bedroom, the style is gender neutral and you can add colour to suit your decor. On top of that it’s a fun project that will take less than half an hour to make! You’ll need small branches or sticks, some felt balls, deer figurines, embroidery thread and a needle, adhesive. LET’S GET STARTED Start by wrapping sections of the sticks in embroidery thread. Secure the ends of the thread at the back of the stick with a touch of glue. Thread a needle and tie a knot in the end. Thread the felt balls onto the embroidery thread and space them out. Tie the felt ball garlands onto the stick and attach another thread to hang your creation. Attach the deer to the sticks with a dab of adhesive. And you’re done! Hang your original handmade wall hanging in your child’s room.    If you’re looking for other design tips for children’s or nursery rooms click over to the blog to get the latest trends from Lisa! And don’t forget to tag us on Instagram or Facebook to share with us your creation! Tutorial, styling and photos by Lisa Tilse of We Are Scout for...

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Nursery and Children’s Bedroom Trends for 2017

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Nursery and Children’s Bedroom Trends for 2017

Nursery and Children’s Trends for 2017 We’re jumping into the new year with the latest design trends and inspiration for nursery and children’s bedrooms with Greenwood’s resident crafter, Lisa Tilse! What better way to ‘Jumpstart January’ than creating a fresh space to inspire your little one to be curious and creative?! Lisa helps us strike the right balance between function, fun and individuality. So, what’s trending Lisa? It can sometimes be so hard to know where to start when decorating your child’s room. Although I don’t advocate following trends slavishly, they can give you some fresh ideas to spunk up a living space. These are some trends that we will see a lot more of in kids bedrooms and nurseries this year. Gender Neutral Rooms The choice to have a gender neutral nursery isn’t just about getting things in place before baby is born. The gender neutral look is trending for both boys and girls of all ages… and it doesn’t mean the style has to be boring or bland. White, tones of wood and soft grey are a good starting point and look beautiful together without adding in any other colours. But if you find that too understated, there are lots of other ways to create a lovely room for your child without reverting to traditional pink or blue. Colours like mint, mustard, coral, lilac, navy and red can look fresh and gender neutral. There are so many brands now making beautiful furnishings and homewares for children’s rooms in these contemporary colour palettes. Cream Empire        My Domaine  | A Beautiful Mess These stunning rooms also illustrate another trend for children’s bedrooms: statement rugs. From kilms to jute and contemporary brights, rugs are a standout way to add style and warmth to any room. oh.eight.oh.nine Grey is the new white Grey in all its tones, and the new ‘it’ colour greige, is set to replace white on our walls in 2017. It’s a very versatile colour that, depending on whether the base tone is warm or cool, will coordinate beautifully with just about any other hue. Grey creates a peaceful on trend Scandinavian vibe when paired with white and natural wood tones. It partners equally well with both brights and pastels so you can change the whole look of a room with grey walls just by replacing a few accessories or the bed linen. Delightfull Limma Land | Little Dwellings Ollie & Seb’s Haus For impact try a wallpaper Wallpaper is in and there are a lot of options to choose from for your child’s room. Go for understated spots, a lovely watercolour design or go all out with something bold and dramatic. Whatever look you go for, wallpaper will make a statement and add interest to the space. The trend is to use wallpaper as a feature, on one wall or behind built in book shelves for example. If the design is big and bold allow it to be the feature by making everything else in the room complement it rather than compete with it. Smaller patterns mean that you can add additional pattern in the bed linen and soft furnishings. When using wallpaper let it be the cue to inform all the other colour choices in the room. Domino        Boilg Magazine | 100 Layer Cakelet Tellkiddo Live Loud...

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