When your child doesn’t listen, remember: You’re still a good mom

I’m here to tell you: Me, too. And I understand.

When your child doesn’t listen, remember: You’re still a good mom

Maybe you’ve been here before.

Maybe acting out and tantrums have only just begun for you.

Sweat is dripping down your back, your heartbeat quickens, your breath shallows. Your eyes are darting around and thoughts are racing through your mind.

Why is this happening here?

Why won’t she just listen?

I don’t have time for this right now!

This is embarrassing!

I don’t know what to do.

When our children have tantrums in public places, we feel insecure. We feel alone.

When our children don’t listen to us in front of other people we feel shame and insignificant.

When we watch our kiddos do exactly what we asked them to do—but not because we asked, because Grandma or Aunt Molly asked them instead—we feel silly and like we're doing something wrong.

But can I let you in on a little secret, mama?

Sometimes our kids aren’t going to listen to us. And sometimes, they’re going to go against what we’re asking them to do. And sometimes, they’re going to blatantly act out for us, but act like a sweetie pie for anyone who isn’t you.

It’s maddening. It’s frustrating. And, while our little ones are learning and growing and figuring out lessons on control and boundaries—it’s our lives.

But I am here to tell you one thing that I know. To shout it loudly in your face: YOU ARE STILL A REALLY GOOD MOM EVEN IF YOUR KID DOESN’T ALWAYS LISTEN TO YOU.

Because I see you in the checkout line at Target with a screaming child as you are checking the time on your phone silently wishing the line could move faster because it’s way past nap time but you really needed toilet paper (okay, okay, and a few Dollar Spot items and goldfish).

I see you at church shushing your 2-year-old as she scream-sings ‘Baby you’re a fiiiiiiirewoooorrrrk!’ so loud and she—quite frankly—does not care if that’s a church song because that’s the song on the docket right now whether anyone likes it or not.

I see you at toddler open play looking totally frazzled because you’re holding your baby while trying to climb up the blow-up slide because your toddler is scared and insists you go on it with him because he really wants to try it, but can’t without you, and will not rest his case until you all go down that darn slide.

I see you at a family party turning red in the face when you (nicely, calmly) asked your kiddo to share their Legos with their cousin and instead of obliging, they screamed, “NO! Leave me alone! I don’t like you!” as loud as can be.

I see you crying at a friend’s house because your little one just bit your friend’s kid and you feel terrible, and—to be honest—they did this to their sister last week, too, and you feel like the worst mom in the world and that you’re failing and this phase will never end and they’ll be kicked out of college one day for biting their classmates or professors and this parenting thing can feel hopeless can’t it?

I see you at your baby’s one year well visit feeling small and uncertain after you’ve been asked a million questions and you try to get your baby to say certain words or to do their latest trick on demand to ‘prove’ to the doctor that you are a ‘good mom’ and you ‘know what you’re doing’, but you instead feel like a not-so-great mother because well, she didn’t listen to one word you said in there.

I’m here to tell you: Me, too. And I understand. And you know what? Even when this stuff gets really hard—like, really, really hard—YOU’RE STILL GOOD AT THIS.

Sometimes they don’t listen because they’re tired, they’re hungry, they’re learning, they’re testing limits, they feel really safe with you. And you know what? YOU’RE STILL GOOD AT THIS.

Even though they’re not listening and you feel like you don’t know what you’re doing, or, actually, you thought you knew what you were doing, but in this moment you’re not so sure—YOU’RE STILL GOOD AT THIS.

Even if you’ve lost your patience because you can’t take the fact that no one follows directions and you feel like you’re not being heard—YOU’RE STILL GOOD AT THIS.

Tantrums and acting out can be seasons of our motherhood journey. They’ll pass and then they’ll come back again and then they’ll be gone, and so on. They’ll make us stronger and maybe even more compassionate. And I want you to know—

You’re a good mom. Plain and simple.

You love your kids.

You teach your kids.

You care for your kids.

You provide for your kids.

You worry about your kids.

You spend time with your kids.

You are really, really good at this. Promise.

14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.


Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!


Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.


Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.


Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.


Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.


Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.


Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.


Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.


Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.


Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.


Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.


Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.


Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


9 products that will help baby sleep better (and longer!)

For many parents, attempting naps and bedtime can seem like a never-ending cycle of rocking, shushing and hoping for some kind of magic sleep solution.

How do I get my baby to sleep? This is one of the most commonly asked questions among new parents, and it makes sense, given that babies are born with their days and nights mixed up. For many parents, attempting naps and bedtime can seem like a never-ending cycle of rocking, shushing and hoping for some kind of magic sleep solution.

And while that might not exist (yet), we have found some of the best products out there that can help baby fall asleep faster and for longer durations. Because when baby is sleeping, so are you!

Dreamland Baby weighted sleep sack and swaddle

Designed by a mama, parents swear by this weighted sleep sack. It mimics your hug to give your baby security and comfort that helps them get to sleep faster and stay asleep longer. The detachable swaddle wing makes it easy to transition as they grow.

It's also super easy to get on and off, and includes a bottom-up zipper for late night changes, so you don't have to wake your baby in the process.


Yogasleep Hushh portable sound machine

Yogasleep hushh sound machine

With three soothing options, this is a perfect solution to help your baby settle when naps are on the go and during travel! I love how compact this noise machine is and that it can run all night with one charge.


Bebe au Lait muslin crib sheets

Burt's Bees Organic Crib Sheets

With a variety of print options to choose from, these breathable sheets are *so* soft and smooth, even through multiple washes. The luxury fabric keeps little ones warm without overheating—a formula that helps ensure more sleep for everyone.


The Simple Folk perfect pajamas

The Simple Folk perfect pajamas

You know what's going to help baby have their best sleep ever? Some quality, super soft pajamas. The timeless (and aptly named!) Perfect Pajama from The Simple Folk are some of our favorites. They last forever and they're made from organic pima cotton that is safe on baby's precious skin. They come in a wide range of sizes so siblings can match and feature fold-over hand covers on sizes up to 12 months.


The Snoo bassinet


Designed by expert pediatrician and sleep guru Dr. Harvey Karp, the Snoo bassinet gently rocks your baby to sleep while snuggled up in the built-in swaddle. Not only does it come with sensors that adjust the white noise and movement based on your baby's needs, there is also an app that allows you to adjust the settings directly from your phone.

While this item is a bit on the expensive side, there is now an option to rent for $3.50 a day, which is a total game changer!


Hatch Baby Rest sound machine + nightlight

best baby sound machine

The Hatch Baby Rest is a dual sound machine and nightlight that will grow with your family. Many parents use this product with their infants as a white-noise machine and then as a "time to rise" solution for toddlers.

The thing I love most about this product is that the light it gives off isn't too bright, and you can even select different color preferences; giving your toddler choices at bedtime.


Crane humidifier

Crane Humidifier

The only thing worse than a sick baby is a baby who is sick and not sleeping well. The Crane humidifier helps take care of this by relieving congestion and helping your baby breathe better while sleeping.

Personally, I think the adorable design options alone are enough of a reason to purchase this product, and your child will love watching steam come out of the elephant's trunk!


Naturepedic organic crib mattress

Naturpedic Lightweight Organic Mattress

In the first few months of life, babies can spend up to 17 hours a day sleeping, so choosing a mattress that is safe (read: no chemicals!) and comfortable is incredibly important.

Naturepedic uses allergen-friendly and waterproof materials with babies and children in mind, making them easy to clean and giving you peace of mind.


Happiest Baby sleepea 5-second swaddle

best baby swaddle

There are baby swaddles and then there is Sleepea. Similar to the brand's swaddle that is built into the Snoo, the Sleepea is magic for multiple reasons. First, it's got mesh panels ensuring baby never overheats. Second, the zipper zips from the top or the bottom, so you can change the baby's diaper in the middle of the night without ever waking them. Third, it's hip safe. Fourth, the patterns are SO cute. And fifth, the interior swaddle wrap that keeps baby's ams down has a "quiet" velcro that won't wake baby if you need to readjust while they're asleep.


We independently select and share the products we love—and may receive a commission if you choose to buy. You've got this.


What went viral this week: Pregnant Disney Princesses + an airline nightmare

Now, more than ever, we need to hear those good news stories.

Vanessa Firme/Instagram

Last week was a week.

We lost a legal and cultural icon with the passing of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and deadly wildfires continue to blaze on the West Coast. Now, more than ever, we need to see creativity, kindness and compassion in our world—we need to hear those "good news" stories, but we also need to see the headlines that show us how and why the world needs to change .

And right now both kinds of stories are going viral.

Here are the viral stories you need to read right now:

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