Sunday, October 23, 2016

Kindness Candy: A Sweet Way to Teach Social Skills

Our newest release is
HALF OFF until 10pm EDT
tomorrow, Monday 10/24/16!

Our hot of the press "Kindness Candy" activity book is available this weekend only to our subscribers at 50% off! This resource is not available anywhere else until Monday! Order link is at the bottom of this post.

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Here's a sneak peek:

And...Here's What's Inside...

The above resource is HALF OFF now!
Sale ends Monday n
ight 10/24/16 at 10 pm EDT

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Saturday, October 15, 2016

Not So Scary...Halloween Fun

Kids just wanna have fun and not all of them like it to be scary. Following is a list of all of our Halloween related posts we've shared through the years. Dig in, there's something for everyone!

Feelings Face Witch Printable
Click the image below:

The following posts may be accessed by clicking the text below:

Have a memorable, fun and safe Halloween!


Click the images below to get the best current deals on these resources:

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Monday, October 10, 2016

World Mental Health Day 2016: Psychological First Aid

Psychological First Aid

Today is World Mental Health Day and the theme this year is Psychological First Aid (PFA). It's something anyone and everyone should be aware of. At Kidlutions, we know how important PFA can be. We've been there when crisis has unfolded and have delivered PFA to children, teens and adults. 

Would you know how to provide PFA, if a situation called for it? You need not be a professionally trained clinician to assist others. 

The World Health Organization defines PFA as:

• Non-intrusive, practical care and support 

• Assessing needs and concerns 

• Helping people to address basic needs (food, water)

• Listening, but not pressuring people to talk 

• Comforting people and helping them to feel calm 

• Helping people connect to information, services and social supports 

• Protecting people from further harm

There are very simple guidelines available to support people in crisis situations. You can find it all through the World Health Organization.

Resources that Help

The World Health Organization has prepared some additional great handouts and resources for all of us: parents, teachers, healthcare workers, pastors, and basically...all humans! 

Here you go:

Earmark these resources, familiarize yourself with them and know they exist if and when you find yourself in a situation to assist your fellow travelers. 

In honor of World Mental Health Day, 
we are offering all of our resources 
that help kids at 
50% off
your total order, when you use 
code WMH50 at check-out. 

Find it all HERE
or click the image below to go directly to our store...

Friday, September 16, 2016

My Child Won't Talk to Me: The Family Feelings Journal

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Affiliate links are used below.

My Child Won't Talk to Me

In speaking with thousands of families through the years, I’ve learned that one of the challenges parents have is getting their child to talk about how they are feeling. Indeed, it is what lands families in my office on many occasions. I hear, 

“My child won’t share what he is feeling. He just won't talk to me. I’m often left guessing about what’s going on.”

We know parenting is a huge job.  We are busy keeping track of every aspect of our children's lives: health and dental appointments, vision check-ups, homework planners, sports schedules and more. We get so caught up in the daily grind, sometimes we miss out on one crucial aspect that contributes to our child’s well-being and success: Managing Feelings.

Kids need to be able to identify feelings in themselves and others, they need to know how to process and manage those feelings and they also need to know how to deal with conflict in relationships.  When they know what triggers certain feelings, they learn powerful concepts that will strengthen their mental health, relationships, and confidence across the lifespan. It’s a fundamental aspect that contributes to success in all areas of our children’s lives. This is so important, in fact, there are entire agencies whose sole purpose is to research and identify how we can better promote social-emotional growth in our children and in ourselves.

If you struggle with getting your kids to open up, 
consider starting...

A Family Feelings Journal

It’s true…sometimes kids are hesitant to share how they are feeling, or what thoughts are bubbling below the surface. One of the best antidotes I have for this is to start a Family Feelings Journal.
I have suggested this to many families through the years, and still do so. I feel so strongly about it, I urge parents to do this when they are going through a divorce. I give specific instructions for divorce situations in Playful Ways to Help Kids Cope with Divorce.

Here’s a simplified way to start your Family Feelings Journal:

1.      Obtain a journal. Grab a blank journal to use. A spiral notebook is totally fine. Invite your kids to decorate the outside of the journal, if they’d like.

2.      Put it in a prominent place. You’ll want to put the journal where everyone has easy access to it. You may wish to leave it on your kitchen counter or a desk that everyone uses.

3.      Keep a supply of writing tools at the ready. You’ll want to have a variety of writing implements at the ready. I suggest pens and pencils, but that you also have colored pencils, markers and crayons. I have found that teens and even parents will use all of the above, so don’t think crayons and markers are just for the “littles”. Sometimes, a big scrawl of red across a page says A LOT! (Reference our graphic for this post!)

4. Pick a Consistent Time to Review It. Now that your kids have a place to share the feelings that are difficult to verbalize, be sure to review it all with them at a consistent time (maybe after dinner? Pick a time that works for your family). 

5. Help Kids Cope. Offer empathy, support and guidance. Here's where things really start to make a difference. Now that your child has shared the feeling, be sure to offer empathy, support and guidance. It's great to ask your child how he thinks he could manage a BIG feeling, so he can learn to problem-solve on his own. When feelings are overwhelming and a child is feeling stuck, he really counts on your to be the calm, steady voice of reason. Ask your child if you can offer suggestions, then ask which one he think might work best for him.

Sometimes, your child may not wish to talk about what he has shared at all, and that is A-ok! In those instances, just say, 

"Thanks for sharing! Those are some hard feelings to have. Let me know if you ever want to talk about it." 

Be consistent in encouraging your child to write in the Family Feelings Journal and be sure to do so yourself. The more we practice something, the better we get at it. Dealing with feelings is no different!

More Support - extra resources for "those moments"!

1. I have trouble managing my own emotions when my child is out of control.

If you struggle with staying calm and offering empathic, thoughtful responses to a highly emotional child, you are not alone. BLOOM: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids (instant download version) can really help! It's used by thousands of parents and educators to help change behavior more quickly and effectively than other approaches offer. 

2. I want to help my child deal with anger better, but I don't know what to do or say that can help!

We hear you! If you haven't yet, why not sign up for our Anger Toolbox for Kids? It's FREE and you'll get a 45 minute MP3 download, along with some printables! Find it all HERE!

3. I need tips, ideas and printables I can start using right now to help my child, classroom or clients!

Done! We provided thousands of parents, teachers and clinicians worldwide with exactly the right resource at exactly the right time with our printable support materials. You can find them all HERE, or look below if you need something specific. 

{If you've never used our resources before, here's how they work: You purchase the item you'd like and it is delivered immediately as an instant download. You are free to print as many copies as you personally need to use with your own children, classroom or practice. Each item is licensed to one individual. If you need to use in a group practice, or wish to use with a group of teachers, please contact us for more information. We appreciate your integrity.}

Click on the graphic above to 
see what's on special NOW!
Or copy and paste this link 
into your browser:

How do you get your kids to open up?

Tell us in the comments below, 
or come share on our Facebook page!

Wendy Young, LMSW, BCD, is  the founder of Kidlutions and co-author of BLOOM: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids. She is the creator of numerous workbooks and resources to help from the preschool through the teen years. Follow her on PinterestInstagramTwitter and Facebook! She'd love to see your smiling face there!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Back-to-School Anxiety Relief

Back-to-School Anxiety Relief

Back-to-school anxiety can do a number on kids and sometimes it goes beyond the jitters. Anxiety can almost seem paralyzing to some kids. I know it's a fact, based on the numbers of kids I see in my office as the first school bell of the season heralds in a new year of what can be academic and social challenges for some.

We're digging into our archives to share some of our favorite resources to help you help your kids!

10 Tips to Parent Your Anxious Child

First up, a list of 10 tips to help you help your kids. The responses that are most helpful are not always the most natural, nor are they the common responses of most parents and teachers. Our printable can be hung on a fridge or kept close by for reference! 

Next, we're highlighting one of our perennial favorites for readers far and wide. Check out all of these tips and ideas (over 50) to help kids deal with anxiety.

Worry Warriors

We've gathered more than 50 of our favorite ways to manage anxiety and worries for kids and put them all in one place. If you have a child who experiences anxiety, please know he or she is not alone. Our Worry Warriors post is one of our most viewed articles. It features free activities you can create at home, as well as our favorite products you can use at home or in the classroom. 

Finally, sometimes feelings are just overwhelming. You'll find a few extra resources listed in our next post, featured below:

Find it HERE!

Well, that's a start. Poke around on our site, we've tons of posts that cater to helping kids and teens cope with BIG feelings!

How has back-to-school been going for your kids?

Wendy Young, LMSW, BCD, is  the founder of Kidlutions and co-author of BLOOM: 50 Things to Say, Think and Do with Anxious, Angry and Over-the-Top Kids. She is the creator of numerous workbooks and resources to help from the preschool through the teen years. Follow her on PinterestInstagramTwitter and Facebook! She'd love to see your smiling face there!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Are You are Self-care Slacker?

Click image to go to our affiliate link to one of my fave self-care options!

Are You a Self-care Slacker?

It's been a long, long summer. It's been fun, but it's been long.  For most moms, it's been filled with sibling squabbles, days at the beach, late nights, family vacation, and more. While you probably loved every minute of it, you likely didn't get to spend much time on self-care, that ever-elusive but always important commodity.

With school back in session, chances are you're busy packing lunches, helping with homework and getting everyone ready to get out the door in time. You may feel like you've already put in an 8-hour day before your key is in the ignition for the morning drop-off.

Already feeling sluggish and worn down?

Have you been a self-care slacker?

Feeling Frazzled, Anxious or Out-of-Sorts?

Feeling frazzled, anxious or out-of-sorts? You are not alone. Truly. I hear from hundreds of stressed out moms online, see them in my office and get emails in my inbox telling the tales of mamas who are overtaxed, overburdened and overwhelmed. In short, they are in need of some serious self-care. Problem is, it's hard to find the time and space to make it happen.


It's time to SLOW DOWN and take a breath.

A great big one.

Tune out some of the extraneous noise and tune in to what you need right now. Take care of yourself. It will make you much better at taking care of those around you. That's a good thing...but do it for yourself. Because you deserve it...just for you.

We all have our favorite ways to relax, and get back to our best versions of ourselves.

Tune-up for Your Entire Mind, Body and Spirit

In addition to spending time with family, laughing, finding JOY and practicing mindfulness, I have come to love participating in spring {and now fall} cleanses. I've been doing this seasonally {read about a past cleanse here} for about three years now...and the results are amazing. I like to think of it like a tune-up for your entire mind, body and spirit. If you want to feel refreshed, at ease, calm and relaxed, with a renewed sense of energy while eating healthy, whole foods (you won't eat anything you can't buy at your local grocery store)...and your whole family can eat the chef-inspired meals you'll be preparing to improve your health and boost your mood. (True story: my kids LOVED the recipes on the cleanse!) You're going to feel like you're eating in an upscale restaurant...only it's prepared in your own kitchen with ingredients you can pronounce!

I'll be in on this upcoming Nourish to Flourish Fall Cleanse...and I invite you to join me.

You can learn all about it HERE!

Hope to see you on the inside!

Would a little self-care look good on you? I can't think of one mama I know who wouldn't benefit!

Disclaimer: Affiliate links are included in the above post. 
All thoughts stem my true experience with this cleanse and are 100% my own.

Thriving After Sexual Abuse

Through the years, I have worked with many sexual abuse survivors. My hope is that they not only survive, but thrive...that they become stronger at the broken places. I teach them things about managing triggers and trauma reactions and bear witness to their story and they teach me things about the power of the human spirit, about triumph and victory. Not long ago, I became acquainted with one of our readers, Carissa Magras, who happens to be a childhood sexual abuse survivor. I invited Carissa to write a letter to herself as a 15-year-old, of what she wished she could have known at that age (since many of the survivors I work with are in that age range.) She rose to the challenge. Here is what came from her heart:

I see you there, lying on your bed listening to music; talking on the phone with your friends; hanging out at the movies. I know how on the outside you look like a typical teenager, but on the inside you feel ragged, broken, and bruised. I see the smile on your face, but I know the deep pain that hides behind it. I want you to know a few things that no one told us at that age, during that time. I know these things I have to say might feel so far out of reach, or incomprehensible at this moment that you are in; but trust that they are true. I have been where you are. I am you. And this is what I wish we would have known back then.

Hindsight is 20/20. As an adult now, I see our childhood in a different way than when I was immersed in it. As a child and teenager, it was impossible for me to see the truth because I was to close to it all; like trying to read a piece of paper smashed up against my face. I couldn’t see clearly or know how to accurately make sense of situations. It was our parent’s job to see that truth for us. And our teachers. And therapists. And all the other adults who are supposed to be safe, and care for us as kids growing into adults. But some of those people failed us. Some of those adults weren’t grown up enough to see the truth for us, and therefore take action to protect us. Because of this we felt the blame, shame, and guilt. It messed with our head when dad violated us at just five years old, in a way that is meant for a husband and wife. There was something wrong with that 19 year old guy who took our virginity when we were 15, even with our “consent”. But it was not our fault. No matter the age, no matter the act. You were too close to be able to see it for what it was. It wasn’t your responsibility to protect yourself. It was the responsibility of the adults in your life. And I’m sorry that they failed us. Some did it intentionally, but most were clueless. I have found since then that many adults are really just kids still trying to figure out how to grow up. If it makes things any better, many of those adults have realized their mistakes, sincerely apologized and changed their ways. No one is perfect. We all live, learn, and grow. But no matter what, don’t blame yourself, regardless of the circumstances, for the choices someone else made.

Our dad… our first real boyfriend… and everyone else who chose to use us instead of love us… they were really good at manipulating and making us feel like something was wrong with us. The only thing that was wrong, were the choices they made. What you feel is not who you are. You are not broken or stained. What happened might dictate your emotions, but it does not define who you are as a person. I know you better than anyone. And I have never met someone with as much strength, endurance, courage, and compassion. There was something wrong with what they did, but there was nothing wrong with you. And what you might be feeling or going through right now as a result, is normal given what you have been through.

It is hard to find your self-worth when people who you love and trust, disfigure that self-worth at such a young age. I know you feel like nothing right now. I know you are so insecure even though you come across so confident. I know your fears, and the doubt you feel every day. I know how you don’t think you are worthy of anything good. But do not let the actions or opinions of other people define who you are and dictate your worthiness in this world. In the brokenness, you are beautiful. In the pain, you are strong. You are worthy of someone loving you with a love that is safe, good, and true. Right now it might be hard to find those people, but they are out there. They are waiting to meet you; waiting for their life to be made better by your existence, and waiting for them to make your life better by their presence. There are all kinds of people in this world. You don’t have to let all of them into your corner. You get to decide who stays. Choose the people who see you for what you truly are: beautiful, strong, tenacious, and wonderful; worthy of being loved and respected.


I wish I could tell you that life as an adult is easy and great. It isn’t. I will say that it is 100% better than high school, and even college. But no matter your age, life will still stink sometimes. It will still throw curveballs when the time is inconvenient. There will still be people who hurt you and choose wrong over right. The biggest difference between life as a teenager and as an adult is that you get to choose what you do with those curveballs and relationships. You don’t have to keep every relationship “just because”. You get to choose the ones that are safe and healthy for you. You get to decide what situations you are in or avoid. You get to dictate the path of your healing journey. We may not be able to change the first few chapters of our life, but we can take back the pen and write the rest of our story.

I know you feel broken and messed up. I know how dark and deep the abyss is in your soul. I know that the depression is overwhelming, and makes you feel so weak and small. But I promise you that you are stronger than you know. It is okay to have bad days. As I write this, I am 31, and I still have days when I just want to stay in bed, sob my eyes out, and eat a pint of ice cream. I used to feel guilty when that happened, like all hope was lost and I would never become the person I desire. But one day you are going to look around, and realize that you have more good days now than bad. And that those bad days used to be so much worse. You no longer feel guilty for having scars. You realize those scars are beauty marks that have made you who you are. You refused to quit making progress, and from the ashes you have risen. On the days when you thought you couldn’t take one more step, you had people - safe, loving, trustworthy people - who came alongside you, held you, helped you up, and walked with you. You will get through this. It feels so hopeless and overwhelming right now, but the sun will break the darkness, and the warmth of its light will fill your soul and heal your heart. Just hang in there. Your day and life as you want it, is coming.

Carissa Magras, founder of

Carissa Magras is a survivor of childhood sexual abuse and the founder of Blue Spoons, a company that exists to give 100% of its profits to fund counseling services and treatment programs for the 1 in 4 females and 1 in 6 males impacted by sexual inappropriateness everywhere. Carissa resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, kids, and Maltipoo. To learn more, visit or follow @blue_spoons on social media. #BlueSpoonie

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