Don’t Stare Without a Smile – The Easiest Way to Encourage Parents

Anyone who is a parent has been there: at the grocery store somewhere around lunch time and nap time. You just need a few things and are trying to make fast decisions, but then your kid, for no reason or for every reason, loses it. The meltdown has happened. In the next moments you are trying to finish your thoughts about what to get and get out of the store. And in the meantime, you know, all eyes are upon you.

Of course it’s human nature to put our gaze on something that’s loud or disruptive. And sometimes it’s hard to look away. Depending on your personality and personal experience, I have a few bits of advice on how to be a help in these moments.

The first option if you see a parent with a crying child is just to look away and go about your shopping. There’s no need to stare, roll your eyes, internally compare your child (real or imaginary) to theirs, or to mumble about anyone’s behavior to anyone else. One of the worst feelings is when you think your child is disrupting other people. The truth is they may be disrupting your grocery store zen, but they don’t need to know that or have your glares make them feel even worse.

However, if in your glance at the loud commotion, you catch the eye of the mom or dad with the sad child, just smile. Not a jolly smile, but a compassionate “you’re going to make it” smile. It shouldn’t be long, but it should be sincere.

If you are seasoned, older parent, don’t offer advice; give encouragement. I have two wonderful memories of seasoned parents, total strangers, who made me feel that parenting out in the world wasn’t going to be so bad.

The very first time my husband and I went out to eat with our daughter, she was about 6 weeks old, and we went to Torchy’s Tacos. Torchy’s isn’t fancy, but that didn’t matter. She started getting fussy, and I nervously looked around the restaurant to see who we were disturbing with our crying baby. It was winter and too cold to go outside, so my husband and I took turns rocking and bouncing and soothing while the other took quick bites of tacos.

The first person we apologized to was a man sitting solo at the table next to us. His response, “I’m traveling for work and I have 3 kids at home. This makes me feel like I’m right at home. I’m happy here; your baby isn’t going to bother me at all.” And he stayed at the table. He could have been lying through his face, but his kindness fell so gently on us as new parents.

Then along came an older couple and they intentionally sat at the other table next to us. The elderly lady put her hand on my shoulder and said, “We’re going to sit right here, and your baby isn’t going to bother us at all. You just keep right on eating. We’ve all been there.” She must have overheard our apology to the man and preemptively assured us that we were going to be just fine.

In that one meal, I felt so encouraged by how gracious people could be about crying kids.

Fast forward a year and a half to the grocery store. I was very pregnant with our 2nd kid, and my daughter was refusing to get into the shopping cart. While I worked to get her bucked up, a lady runs over to me and said, “We’ve all been there. It gets better. You’re doing a great job.” And then she jets out to the parking lot. That was it, but I walked into that store with such assurance. I relished in the stranger’s words for the rest of the day.

I still do.

Extending grace to people, parents or not, should be common practice, and the more you do it, the easier it will be. There is also a chance the stranger you showed a small kindness to will write about you in her blog post because it was one of the most encouraging moments of her life.

Darling Hostess Presents for Holiday Parties

Bringing a hostess present to your holiday parties can often become an afterthought but the gesture goes a long way. Here’s a collection of our 7 favorite gift ideas that will suit your host and your budget.

The Can’t-Go-Wrong Gift

Illume Soy Candles – Balsam & Cedar or Winter White scent come boxed and ready to give. $52.00

 

 

For the Hostess Who Loves Pretties

Loren Hope studs – Not everyone loves a dangle but everyone loves a stud. Loren Hope studs are statement pieces that can be worn every day. There are so many colors to choose from, too. $36.00

FOR THE Hostess Who Lives Real Life

Mom Life T-shirts – Usually we wouldn’t recommend buying clothes for someone unless they are your absolute bestie, but t-shirts are pretty simple. There isn’t a mom out there who would smile after getting one of these cute tees. *See another style below. $36.00

 

For the Hostess Who Cooks the Mostest

Rifle Paper Company Recipe Box – If your host likes to actually cook the food that she serves, then this is a great gift. Make it more thoughtful and personal by adding a couple of your favorite recipes to the tin before you gift it. $34.00

 

The Practical Gift That Doesn’t Look Practical

Clutch – We can never have too many of these little bags. Switching between bags is so easy and you look way more organized than you are. Bonus points on the gift if your host still requires a diaper bag. $18

 

The Best For Your Budget

Succulent Ring Dish – You don’t have to break the bank to bring a sweet, thoughtful gift. This darling dish is under $10 so you can say yes to all of your party invitations! $6

 

Our Favorite For Him

Guys can host killer parties, too. This mason jar wrap by Humble Goods is unique and sure to make your host feel appreciated. P.S. If you don’t love Austin as much as we do, there’s a beautiful desert scene, too. $25

 

 

All items except the mason jar can be found at Cameo Boutique in Mandeville, Louisiana. Not in Mandville? Us either, but we love to shop their Instagram. They ship!

Anyone else relating to this image? This tee might need to be for you. Happy Holidays!

 

Meet KINBE – Baby Moccasins with a Purpose

We were recently introduced to KINBE, and they’re so fantastic we just had to share the love!

KINBE is a socially conscious lifestyle brand founded by Amber Cruse. She started KINBE with a dream to be able to give back to the world in a more meaningful way.

There are a lot of incredible things about KINBE, so we narrowed it down to our top three:

KINBE moccasins are adjustable!

How genius is that? Seriously – we have all dealt with the frustration of our kids growing out of their shoes in no time. KINBE understood this problem and created an adorable solution! The two hidden straps work by adjusting the length and ankle width of the shoe. They tighten in just the right places for the perfect fit, and their flexibility encourages natural foot growth. They’re crafted from 100% genuine flexible leather that’s made in the U.S.A.

KINBE gives back.

When you support KINBE, 25% of profits go to helping create loving homes for children without one.* From their website:

Most children under 3 years of age in the orphan system will sit in cribs most of the day with little human touch. Due to the lack of resources, education and staff these babies and toddlers cannot thrive. This is why we have partnered  with an orphanage in Guatemala whose mission is to build family style housing for these children.  Most of the children here will never be adopted, but with the family-style housing, they are raised in a loving home instead of a dormitory-style orphanage with little sense of family. We support training these families on parenting and child development and hiring and vetting of staff so that they can provide the best love and support for these children.

KINBE moccasins are adorable!

Who doesn’t love tiny moccasins on babies and toddlers? They come in every imaginable color – pale pink, blue and white, black, purple polka dot, rainbow, and so much more.

Check out all of their super cute options here – and feel great about your purchase having an amazing, far-reaching impact!

P.S. Look for your Kinbe Gift Certificate in all of our September Boxes!

 

 

 

*This month Kinbe will be supporting families who have been affected by Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma.