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To help my children make the right choices, I want them to remember this one phrase

“Whatever you do child, do not let it be at the cost of your beautiful heart.”

To help my children make the right choices, I want them to remember this one phrase

As a parent, there are so many things that we want to teach our kids, that we need to teach them, and should teach them. From helping them learn to walk and talk, to saying 'please' and 'thank you,' to being helpful, caring and kind to others—the list goes on. But I’ve decided out of everything I want and need to teach my kids, there is one thing I want my children to learn and live by the most.


How I decided on this came to me in the strangest of ways, a TV show. I was watching the show Sense 8 on Netflix and while it’s laden with risqué and violent scenes (although a great storyline to follow), there was a line to a character that stood out. It stopped me in my tracks and I thought, "that’s what I want for my kids. That’s what I want them to learn and live by."

“Whatever you do child, do not let it be at the cost of your beautiful heart.”

If this quote doesn’t tug at your own heartstrings and make you think twice about all of your own decisions and possible life compromises, then I don’t know what will. It’s a simple statement, and yet there is so much power behind it.

As our children grow, they are going to be given a whole world in which they will have to make the right choices. They will at times make poor choices and it’s unrealistic not to think so. But what this quote says to me (and what I want my children to learn from it), is that even though you will make poor decisions in life you do not need to make choices that are going to cost you more than the love and goodness you have in your heart.

There is a big difference in making poor decisions that you learn from, and poor decisions that change you, and change all the good you are capable of.

I want my children to know it is possible to make poor decisions that take away a part of them that they cannot get back, that they cannot fully reconcile, and that may cost them their beautiful heart.

I cannot speak as to what types of decisions those are specifically, but I know that as my children grow and learn to face the challenges and struggles of this world, that I want them to always stop and think about their heart. I want them to stop and think about the good in them, and all the positive things they are capable of sharing, even when this may not be as apparent or clear to them.

I want my children to know that their own heart is beautiful and has been from the beginning and no decision out there is worth compromising the good they have and the beauty of the person they are inside and out.

I’m not saying this is going to be an easy lesson to teach my children and it certainly is a challenge to any parent. But I feel like it is worth every effort to make this one of the most important lessons, if not the most important lesson, in their lives.

We need to be able to live with ourselves, with the choices we make, with the things we do TO and FOR others. Making choices that cause severe harm and hurt to ourselves and others will cost us our beautiful hearts, and sometimes these choices are made in the blink of an eye.

This simple TV quote couldn’t be more relevant in a world today that’s becoming more rampant with bullying and hate. But I believe we are born with natural goodness and love in our hearts, and as long as it is fostered and nourished from childhood to adulthood it will remain, and our hearts will stay beautiful.

This is my greatest wish for my children. I want them to be happy, I want them to be loved, I want them to be kind, but most of all I want their beautiful hearts to ALWAYS stay beautiful.

Originally posted on World’s Average Mom.

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I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work.

I have four kids 8 and under, so you might expect that my house is teeming with baby gear and kid toys.

But it turns out that for me, the more kids I have, the more I simplify our stuff. At this point, I'm down to the absolute essentials, the gear that I can't live without and the toys my kids actually play with. And so when a mama-to-be asks me what things are worth registering for, there are only a few must-haves on my list.

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer seat is on the top of my list—totally worth it and an absolute must-have for any new mama.

In fact, since I first splurged on my first BABYBJÖRN bouncer eight years ago (it definitely felt like a splurge at the time, but the five star reviews were really compelling), the bouncer seat has become the most-used product in our house for baby's first year.

We've actually invested in a second one so that we didn't have to keep moving ours from the bedroom to the living room when we change locations.

BABYBJÖRN bouncer bliss

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The utility of the seat might seem counterintuitive—it has no mechanical parts, so your baby is instead gently bounced by her own movements. In a world where many baby products are touted for their ability to mechanically rock baby to sleep, I get that many moms might not find the "no-motion" bouncer that compelling. But it turns out that the seat is quite reactive to baby's little kicks, and it has helped my kids to learn how to self-soothe.

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Lightweight + compact:

The BABYBJÖRN bouncer is super lightweight, and it also folds flat in a second. Because of those features, we've frequently stored it under the couch, in a suitcase or in the back of the car. It folds completely flat, which I love.

Entertainment zone:

Is the toy bar worth it? The toy bar is totally worth it. Not only is the toy bar adorable, but it's one of the first toys that my babies actually play with once they discover the world beyond my boobs. The toys spin and are close to eye level so they have frequently kept my baby entertained while I cook or take a quick shower.

Great style:

This is not a small detail to me–the BABYBJÖRN bouncer is seriously stylish. I am done with baby gear and toys that make my house look like a theme park. The elegant European design honestly just looks good in my living room and I appreciate that parents can enjoy it as much as baby.

It's adjustable:

With three height settings that let you prop baby up to be entertained, or lay back to rest, we get years of use. And the bouncer can actually be adjusted for bigger kids and used from newborn to toddler age. It's that good.

It just works:

I wouldn't be swooning over the BABYBJÖRN bouncer after eight years and four kids if it didn't work. But I have used the seat as a safe space to put baby while I've worked (I once rocked my baby in it with my foot while I reported on a breaking news story for the Washington Post), and as a cozy spot for my second child to lay while his big brother played nearby. It's held up for almost a decade with almost-constant use.

So for me, looking back on what I thought was a splurge eight years ago, was actually one of the best investments in baby gear I ever made.

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