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9 Sleepover Tips Every Parent Should Know

9 Sleepover Tips Every Parent Should Know

Parents naturally want to protect their kids and keep them safe and out of trouble. Trusting your kid will be safe at school or with babysitters can be hard enough, but when it comes to sleepovers—even with family and close friends—it can be difficult to let go and trust your kid to someone else’s care.

However, almost every child is going to want to spend the night at their best friends’ homes, go to an overnight camp, or have friends over for the night at your home at some point.

Mentally preparing yourself for sleepovers can make them easier to accept and much less stressful for both parents and kids alike. Here are a few sleepover tips so that slumber parties won’t make you pull your hair out..

1. Make sure your child is ready

As the parent, you will be the best judge of whether or not your child is ready for sleepovers, and whether or not a particular sleepover is a wise idea. Some kids may be perfectly fine at seven or eight while others might not be ready until their teen years.

If they don’t sleep easily on their own, if they wet the bed, or if they still wake up and come to your bed for comfort they might not be ready quite yet. Basically, they should have good “sleep skills” before attending sleepovers: able to fall asleep themselves without your help or much fuss and be able to sleep through the night with few interruptions.

You can always try out a few “late-overs” first (letting your child stay late but picking them up to sleep at home), or a sleepover with grandma or cousins to see how they handle being without you.

Some parents or kids may never be comfortable with sleepovers for whatever reason and that is fine, too. It’s ultimately a decision for you as a parent and you have to trust your gut.

Knowing if your child is ready

    2. Chat with fellow parents

    One of the best ways to have an easier time with sleepovers is to coordinate the details with fellow parents and get to know them in advance.

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    Think about it like this: do you know them well enough to loan them your car for a night? If you would have objections about giving them your keys then sending your kid over may not be wise!

    If you are the host, reach out to the parents via phone or in person, make sure you have their current contact information handy, ask if there are any allergies to be aware of, or if there are any other things you need to know about their stay with you. Make it clear if you are planning activities like swimming that would require special clothes or gear so there’s no upsets.

    If you are sending your kid to a sleepover, check in with the other parent let them know the same thing. See what the evening will entail so you know what to pack. You might also want to ask who else will be in the house, their house rules and supervision plans, and other important questions.

    For kids with dietary restrictions, it’s always appreciated (and less stressful for you) if you send a ready-made meal and a few safe snacks along with your kiddo. Other parents may not be savvy with gluten-free/nut-free meals, despite their best intentions, and it’s often easiest just to avoid that stress for both parties.

    Get Chatty With Fellow Parents

      3. Explain sleepover etiquette and safety to your child

      Whether you’re hosting or sending, explain the rules and boundaries of sleepovers ahead of time to your child.

      Minding manners, being polite, and respecting rules and the homes of host parents are important points to cover. Kids can get mischievous in groups, so making it clear that they are still subject to normal rules and consequences can be a good idea.

      Safety is often the number-one concern for parents. When your child is going to someone else’s sleepover, make sure your kid has your phone number memorized and knows that they can call you at any time if they feel uncomfortable.

      Many parents also like to go over the basic aspects of physical safety with their kids. Parenthood.com has an excellent article on smart sleepovers, and safety expert Pattie Fitzgerald has a good short video and an article covering some of the concerns parents might have.

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      Explain Sleepover Etiquette & Safety to Your Child

        4. Simple is best

        When you are ready to plan a slumber party, remember that simple is always best—that goes for activities, food, or planning.

        You don’t need to have a three-ring circus in your living room to keep kids entertained. Often a few board games, a movie, crafts, or free play are more than enough. Don’t stress yourself out planning an action-packed night or a difficult outing.

        The same goes for food. You might be super proud of your cumin-scented pot roast and root vegetables that got 100 likes on Instagram, but the gaggle of grade-schoolers you’re serving may not appreciate it as much.

        So keep the food simple. Chicken strips or nuggets, veggies and dip, cut-up fruit, sandwiches, and pizza are just a few classic kid-friendly standbys that will make meal times smoother.

        If you have older kids over, you could also get them in on the fun by having them make their own pizzas, subs or tacos.

        Repeat This Mantra: Simple is Best

          5. Lay ground rules from the start

          One of the best ways to avoid arguments and problems during the night is to set firm but reasonable rules from the beginning. This might include where kids can play, indoor rules for your home, outside boundaries, soda limits, and internet/phone boundaries.

          Also, don’t forget to set a firm lights-out time to ensure everyone gets enough sleep. The last thing you’ll want to deal with are a bunch of cranky and tired kids the next morning. Plus, other parents will definitely thank you!

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          Keep in mind age-appropriate bedtimes for your group and plan accordingly. Remember, kids under 12 need at least 10 to 11 hours of sleep per night, and even teens need around nine hours.

          Lay Out Ground Rules from the Get Go

            6. Keep contact information in a central location

            Many savvy parents will already have contact info for the parents of their kids’ friends. But it can be extra helpful to print out all the names and numbers of parents whose kids will be at your sleepover ahead of time and keep it in an easy-to-find location like your purse or the fridge.

            This way if an issue or emergency pops up, you won’t have to search around for contacts or call dozens of numbers while dealing with a stressed or rowdy kid.

            Keep Contact Information in a Central Spot

              7. Pack the essentials, but get your kid’s input, too

              The core sleepover kit for younger kids includes a toothbrush and toothpaste, hairbrush, pajamas, and at least one other outfit. Check to see if they need to bring their own sleeping bag and/or pillow.

              If your child likes to sleep with a specific stuffed animal or blanket toss that in, too. Don’t forget to ask them if there’s a specific toy or other item they want to take with them (within reason) so there’s no regrets or tears later. Run through a quick inventory checklist before you leave the house just to double check.

              Pack The Essentials for Your Kid, but Get Their Input, too

                8. Supervise, but don’t tyrannize

                If you are the host parent, it’s obviously your responsibility to supervise the kids in your care and make sure they don’t get hurt or do anything too crazy.

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                But most kids, especially in the middle school years, will want to spend some time giggling and playing with their friends without mom and dad looming over or leading every single action.

                Definitely check in from time to time, lay clear ground rules and keep both ears and eyes open, but don’t stress yourself out about watching them every single minute.

                If your child is away, you can also request a call before bed so that you can check in and make sure everything is okay without being too “embarrassing.”

                Supervise, But Don't Monopolize

                  9. Expect the unexpected

                  Expect the unexpected is the perfect saying for dealing with sleepovers and kids. You can plan the perfect slumber party to the T, but the kids might be more interested in an activity you didn’t plan, one or two kids might get homesick, the pizza might show up wrong, and someone might scrape a knee.

                  Be flexible with your plans and be prepared for deviations. If you are sending your child to a sleepover, make sure your phone is charged and handy and that you aren’t too far away in case something pops up.

                  For hosts, in addition to keeping parents’ contacts handy, keep a backup kid-friendly movie and a few extra snacks around, have basic first aid stuff and emergency numbers on hand, and remember—simple is best!

                  Spongebob Slumber Party

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                    Last Updated on October 30, 2018

                    How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People

                    How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People

                    What is success to you? How to be successful in life?

                    To some, when they think of success, they imagine wealth; others want power; some just want to make a positive impact on the world.

                    All of these are perfectly valid, indeed success is a concept that means different things to different people. Though no matter what success is to you, it almost certainly isn’t something will come easily.

                    There are countless guides and books to being successful, however, as success is personal and unique to each individual. The advice contained in these books can often not be relevant. Therefore following the advice of a single individual can often be unhelpful.

                    With this in mind, considering the advice of a great many people, people whose ideas of success were different both to each other, and quite possibly, to you can be a good alternative.

                    What follows is a list of thirteen of the best pieces of advice from some of the most successful people who have ever lived. If you want to learn how to be successful, these 13 tips are essential:

                    1.Think big.

                      From Michelangelo Buonarroti, Great Renaissance Artist:

                      “The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.”

                      There are few artists as influential as Michaelangelo. Today centuries after his death, his work still inspires and connects to people. His work is world famous, just think of his statue of David, or the Mural in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican.

                      Imagine then, if he decided not to work as an artist.

                      Being a successful artist has always been extremely difficult, imagine if he decided to give up this ambition in favour of something easier?

                      Oftentimes, people often decided to put their dreams aside for something more “realistic”. To give up their dream for something easier. This quote teaches us the danger of such a point of view.
                      Instead be ambitious.

                      2.Find what you love to do and do it.

                        From Oprah Winfrey, Media Mogul:

                        “You know you are on the road to success if you would do your job and not be paid for it.”

                        This is a good quote to remember and think about when you’re at work.

                        Imagine being as successful as possible in your current job. Ultimately you’ll probably find yourself working extremely hard and this it will take up much of your time.

                        If it’s a job you hate, then being successful at it might only mean filling your life with something you hate to do. What’s the sense in this?

                        Instead, why not focus on doing something you love? When you’ve found what you’re passionate about, you get the motivation to keep you moving. Success at this means the fulfilment of your dreams.

                        Not sure what your passion is yet? You should learn about this Motivation Engine first.

                        Even if you’re not successful, you still filled your time with something you love to do. Many successful musicians spent years of their lives doing unpaid performances, the only reason they kept playing was because they loved to perform.

                        3. Learn how to balance life.

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                          From Phil Knight, CEO of Nike Inc.:

                          “There is an immutable conflict at work in life and in business, a constant battle between peace and chaos. Neither can be mastered, but both can be influenced. How you go about that is the key to success.”

                          All too often, people think that to be successful, they need to make the object of their success their life.

                          If a person thinks their job will lead them to success, then they may spend countless hours per day, and well into the evening working hard.

                          However this comes at the cost of rest, your health and having an enjoyable life. Ultimately they may burn out and cease to be successful at their job anyway.

                          If success comes from having a strong social life and a good group of friends, their job may suffer; meaning that they may lose their job, and then be unable to afford going out with friends.

                          In these ways, success, as Phil Knight says above, is helped by balance. Think of it as a balance between rest and work, or work and play.

                          To achieve that balance, this Ultimate Guide to Prioritizing Your Work And Life can help you.

                          4. Do not be afraid of failure.

                            From Henry Ford, Founder of Ford Motors:

                            “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

                            There is a story, it’s unconfirmed whether it actually happened, yet the message within is none the less true:

                            Thomas Edison inventing the lightbulb was the result of several hundred failed attempts. In an interview, he was asked “How do you feel after all of your failed attempts?”

                            His response was great, “I didn’t fail, I learned hundreds of ways not to invent the lightbulb”

                            He saw each “failure” as a lesson. From that lesson he learned what won’t work, and also might work instead.

                            Each failed attempt, each rejection, were key steps on his path to success. It is easy to feel like you should give up after a failure. But perhaps in that failure is a lesson.

                            Pay attention to your failures, study them. Perhaps then you’ll learn how to succeed.

                            5. Have an unwavering resolution to succeed.

                              From Colonel Sanders, Founder of KFC:

                              “I made a resolve then that I was going to amount to something if I could. And no hours, nor amount of labor, nor amount of money would deter me from giving the best that there was in me. And I have done that ever since, and I win by it. I know.”

                              This, in many ways relates to the above quote about learning from your failures.

                              It’s the easiest thing in the world to give up from a failure. The only way to push on is if you have the true burning desire to succeed, to not be moved or dissuaded from your goals.

                              If you are not truly dedicated towards success, then each failure will hurt more, each set back will slow you down.

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                              Success is hard; without the unwavering desire to succeed, this difficulty may seem insurmountable. With the desire, it is merely an obstacle to go through.

                              6. Be a person of action.

                                From Leonardo da Vinci, Renaissance Genius:

                                “It had long since come to my attention that people of accomplishment rarely sat back and let things happen to them. They went out and happened to things.”

                                Though it was said hundreds of years ago, it works just as much today as it ever had. It applies to literally any successful person.

                                Think about it, picture someone like William Shakespeare:

                                When we think of the time he lived in, we think of the time in a way shaped by him. When we think of Renissance era Italy, we think of Michaelangelo and Leonardo Da Vinci.

                                Or think about the present day:

                                Bill Gates or Steve Jobs. Our current way of life would simply be incomparably different if they didn’t accomplish what they did.

                                You’re probably reading this article on a device by a company that they either founded or companies influenced by them.

                                All these figures were proactive, they saw ways to do things differently and did them. If they let the world shape them, then they’d simply fit into the background. Instead they shaped the world.

                                Applying this to you?

                                Don’t be afraid of going outside the norm. If you can think of a better way to do something, do it that way. If you fail, try again.

                                7. Avoid conflicts.

                                  From Theodore Roosevelt, 26th President of America: “

                                  The most important single ingredient in the formula of success is knowing how to get along with people.”

                                  The best leaders and some of the most influential people (and Theodore Roosevelt is one of the best leaders and one of the most influential people to have lived) were not those who caused commotions, who fought with people or disregarded people; but were people who were friendly to those around them.

                                  People liked them. They wanted them to do well.

                                  This is key to good leadership.

                                  It’s logical. If someone likes you, they want to help you; if you give them a suggestion, they’ll gladly follow through with it.

                                  But if someone doesn’t like you, they may either refuse to help or actively get in your way.

                                  What’s more, it’s always a good idea to cultivate good relationships. You can never tell who will prove to become someone who’ll be able to help you in a big way, or even be a good and supportive friend.

                                  As such, help people and they may help you; and be good to people, and they my be good to you.

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                                  8. Don’t be afraid of introducing new ideas.

                                    From Mark Twain, Famed Author:

                                    “A person with a new idea is a crank until the idea succeeds.”

                                    It is an unfortunate truth that those with the boldest ideas are often disregarded.

                                    Most of us are taught from an early age to think and do things similarly to everyone else. This can be great to fill an existing role. But to truly do things differently (and all successful people did things differently), you need to think differently.

                                    If you have a new idea, don’t throw it away because it’s new and different; instead, celebrate it. Your strange new idea might one day be the one that leads you to success.

                                    9. Believe in your capacity to succeed.

                                      From Walter Disney, Founder of Walt Disney Company:

                                      “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

                                      Success has to be something you can imagine yourself achieving.

                                      It is possible that you will come across those who doubt you and your ability to succeed. You must not become one of these people because the moment you cease believing and dreaming is the moment these dreams fall away.

                                      Keep dreaming!

                                      10. Always maintain a positive mental attitude.

                                        From Thomas Jefferson, 3rd President of America:

                                        “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude.”

                                        Like the above quote says, you need to trust in your ability to succeed. This is the only way to cultivate the right mindset.

                                        Replace negative thoughts with the positive ones. You need to approach problems, not as obstacles stopping you, but merely tasks that need to be completed for you to keep going.

                                        If you stay positive and think like this, setbacks won’t affect you so much, people’s doubts won’t impact you and even the biggest obstacles will seem like minor problems.

                                        However with the wrong mindset of doubt, you’ll be much easier to stop.

                                        11. Don’t let discouragement stop you from pressing on.

                                          From Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of America:

                                          “Let no feeling of discouragement prey upon you, and in the end you are sure to succeed.”

                                          It is an unfortunate fact of human nature — all of us in some way, doubt ourselves. This can be made far worse if others doubt us too.

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                                          When surrounded by doubts, giving up can actually seem like a good idea.

                                          Don’t pay attention to the doubts. If you are discouraged, ignore it.

                                          If this discouragement moves into your mind and you begin to doubt yourself. It is important to ignore this too.

                                          Take a look at these 5 Ways to Stop Self Doubt in its Tracks.

                                          12. Be willing to work hard.

                                            From JC Penny, Founder of JC Penney Inc.:

                                            “Unless you are willing to drench yourself in your work beyond the capacity of the average man, you are just not cut out for positions at the top.”

                                            You might have heard the quote that “success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration” or you may have heard about the 10,000 hours idea.

                                            Whichever way you frame it, they say one thing:

                                            True success comes from work.

                                            You’ll never become successful if you don’t work towards your goal in life and keep working towards it.

                                            Check out this article and you’ll understand Why Hard Work Beats Talent.

                                            13. Be brave enough to follow your intuition.

                                              From Steve Jobs, Co-founder of Apple Inc.:

                                              “Have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.”

                                              In ancient Greece, there was a group of Oracles who lived in Delphi. Everyone who needed advice or to know their future visited them, from the poorest of society to kings. Above the doorway of the temple were the words “know thyself”.

                                              If you strongly believe and desire something, the chances are that you already have an idea how to get there. If not, you may naturally know what things will help you and what things will slow you down.

                                              It’s like how your body can detect danger even when things seem safe.

                                              Ultimately then, you need to trust your own instincts.

                                              Final thoughts

                                              What you might have noticed is that many of the above lessons are similar — most are about developing the right state of mind. This clearly suggests that the key to achieving success, in whatever you wish, comes down to the way you approach it mentally.

                                              Moreover, no matter what stage of life you’re at now, you can still make a difference and pursue success. You can make resetting your life possible when you do this:

                                              How to Start Over and Reboot Your Life When It Seems Too Late

                                              More Recommended Lifehack Experts in Success

                                              • Mandie Holgate — Successful life coach in the UK, helping businesses and individuals achieve greatness
                                              • David Carpenter — Lifelong entrepreneur and business owner helping others to realize the American Dream of business ownership
                                              • Ray Zinn — An inventor, entrepreneur, bestselling author and the longest serving CEO in Silicon Valley

                                              Featured photo credit: Ryan Wong via unsplash.com

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