Posts found under: Children

The Best Online Pharmacy. Buy Cialis Without Prescription – Orders-Cialis.info

Why buy cialis on the internet is really beneficial for you?

So you’ve decided to order cialis and do not know where to start? We can give you some advice. First, ask your doctor for advice in order to properly determine the dosage, when you do that, you need to decide for yourself exactly where you will be buying the drug. You can buy cialis online, or you can just buy it at the pharmacy. Buy cialis online has a number of advantages, one of which is price. The cost of the Internet will always be lower than in stores, and when combined with the free shipping, it will be the best choice. Besides the price there are a number of advantages over conventional pharmacies, one of which is anonymity. Also, you can always check the online store on reliability, read reviews about it and the opinion of other buyers. Read more.

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Children and Sleep

Children and Sleep
Home >> Sleep Topics >> Children and Sleep

Every living creature needs to sleep. It is the primary activity of the brain during early development. Circadian rhythms , or the sleep-wake cycle, are regulated by light and dark and these rhythms take time to develop, resulting in the irregular sleep schedules of newborns. The rhythms begin to develop at about six weeks, and by three to six months most infants have a regular sleep-wake cycle.

By the age of two, most children have spent more time asleep than awake and overall, a child will spend 40 percent of his or her childhood asleep. Sleep is especially important for children as it directly impacts mental and physical development.

There are two alternating types or states of sleep :

Non-Rapid Eye Movement (NREM) or “quiet” sleep. During the deep states of NREM sleep, blood supply to the muscles is increased, energy is restored, tissue growth and repair occur, and important hormones are released for growth and development.

Rapid Eye Movement(REM) or “active” sleep. During REM sleep, our brains are active and dreaming occurs. Our bodies become immobile, breathing and heart rates are irregular.

Babies spend 50 percent of their time in each of these states and the sleep cycle is about 50 minutes. At about six months of age, REM sleep comprises about 30 percent of sleep. By the time children reach preschool age, the sleep cycle is about every 90 minutes.

Sleep and Toddlers (1-3 years)

Toddlers need about 12-14 hours of sleep in a 24-hour period. When they reach about 18 months of age their naptimes will decrease to once a day lasting about one o three hours. Naps should not occur too close to bedtime as they may delay sleep at night.

Many toddlers experience sleep problems including resisting going to bed and nighttime awakenings. Nighttime fears and nightmares are also common.

Many factors can lead to sleep problems. Toddlers’ drive for independence and an increase in their motor, cognitive and social abilities can interfere with sleep. In addition, their ability to get out of bed, separation anxiety, the need for autonomy and the development of the child’s imagination can lead to sleep problems. Daytime sleepiness and behavior problems may signal poor sleep or a sleep problem.

Sleep Tips For Toddlers:

Maintain a daily sleep schedule and consistent bedtime routine.
Make the bedroom environment the same every night and throughout the night.
Set limits that are consistent, communicated and enforced. Encourage use of a security object such as a blanket or stuffed animal.

Sleep and Preschoolers (3-5 years)

Preschoolers typically sleep 11-13 hours each night and most do not nap after five years of age. As with toddlers, difficulty falling asleep and waking up during the night are common. With further development of imagination, preschoolers commonly experience nighttime fears and nightmares. In addition, sleepwalking and sleep terrors peak during preschool years.

Sleep Tips for Preschoolers

Maintain a regular and consistent sleep schedule.
Have a relaxing bedtime routine that ends in the room where the child sleeps.
Child should sleep in the same sleeping environment every night, in a room that is cool, quiet and dark – and without a TV.

Sleep and School-aged Children (5-12 years)

Sleepy KidChildren aged five to 12 need 10-11 hours of sleep. At the same time, there is an increasing demand on their time from school (e.g., homework), sports and other extracurricular and social activities. In addition, school-aged children become more interested in TV, computers, the media and Internet as well as caffeine products – all of which can lead to difficulty falling asleep, nightmares and disruptions to their sleep. In particular, watching TV close to bedtime has been associated with bedtime resistance, difficulty falling asleep, anxiety around sleep and leeping fewer hours.

Sleep problems and disorders are prevalent at this age. Poor or inadequate sleep can lead to mood swings, behavioral problems such as ADHD and cognitive problems that impact on their ability to learn in school.

Sleep Tips for School-aged Children

Teach school-aged children about healthy sleep habits.
Continue to emphasize need for regular and consistent sleep schedule and bedtime routine.
Make child’s bedroom conducive to sleep – dark, cool and quiet.
Keep TV and computers out of the bedroom.
Avoid caffeine.

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Your Child’s Top 10 Nightmares and Dreams – Explained (ivillage)

Your Child’s Top 10 Nightmares and Dreams Explained

By Dr. Gillian Holloway – December 9, 2011

Photo Credit: Getty Images

If your child has a bad dream about bugs in her bed, would it surprise you to learn that she may be upset about having a new sibling? You can learn a great deal about your child’s thoughts and feelings, and how to best comfort her, by discovering the hidden meanings behind her dreams. Get interpretations of your child’s most common dreams and nightmares from dream expert Gillian Holloway, Ph.D.

Monsters
Children have different kinds of monsters in their dreams, and the action involved varies. When a monster is hiding in the closet or under the bed, or lives under the front porch, this makes the situation doubly scary, because there is nowhere safe or off-limits. When a monster is chasing the child in a dream, or yelling and threatening, we have a clue that the monster may represent not so much a situation as a person in the child’s life.

What you need to know:
When parents yell or exhibit unexpectedly harsh behavior either toward their children or toward others, this sometimes translates into “monster” dreams. A cranky teacher or scary neighbor can also be the human side of the monster. These dreams are not necessarily a signal of abuse or anything horrific, but they do indicate that your child may be experiencing something stressful, usually regarding someone close to her. If the dreams repeat, notice when they occur and see if you can associate them with waking-life activities or people. If you recognize your own temper or meltdowns as fodder for the dream, take time to reassure your child that grown-ups sometimes get upset too, but that it does not mean she is at risk, she is in trouble or she needs to be frightened.

Falling
Children, like adults, are susceptible to falling dreams when they feel off balance or out of control. Falling dreams occur most often when there is a sense of chaos in the schedule, when small things mount up or when stability feels somehow shaky.

What you need to know:
In a few instances, falling dreams may be associated with ear infections or with an injury to the eardrum. If you suspect your child may be getting an ear infection or has recently had a bad head cold and falling dreams ensue, you may wish to consult your pediatrician. If you don’t believe there is any physical element contributing to the falling dream, then it is possible that your child is dealing with a sense of slipping, as if the normal taken-for-granted aspects of life may not be holding up somehow. This is a time to do what you can to reassure your child of the stable elements in her life, and to discuss, if she is willing to, the things that may seem scary or unsettling. Just the act of sharing can often be reassuring, since she’ll know it’s all right to be scared and that if she feels worried, she can always find a comforting ear to listen.

Bugs
Telling your child, “Goodnight! Don’t let the bedbugs bite!” may be better advice than you think, since children are prone to dreaming about insects in their bed or a swarm of bugs coming into their room at night.

What you need to know:
This is a dream that may recur a few times with varying degrees of agitation. It is a common dream for youngsters to experience when they are facing unpredictable situations, such as a separation in the marriage, moving into a new home or a new sibling being brought home. There is no single catalyst or interpretation for the attacking insects; rather, the frightening dream seems to reflect a sense of bewilderment and being overwhelmed. Arguments, unexpected changes and feeling as if she has no control over events may trigger repetitions of the dream. If your child has this dream, do what you can to give her some sense of control, or at least a voice in her own fate. Point out stability where it still exists, and help things to be as smooth and predictable as possible. And do what you can to manage your own anxiety, for she may pick it up and feel unsettled even though you aren’t saying much about the situation.

Ability to Fly or Do Magic
These dreams allow the child to perform heroic feats by virtue of her magical powers. She can often fly, perform rescues, travel into other realms and generally know what to do to make matters right.

What you need to know:
These lovely fantasy dreams allow your child to experience success by applying personal powers like imagination, compassion, courage and shrewdness to problem solving. They are wonderful dreams to explore in some detail because in some cases they symbolically allow your child to flex her creative muscles and write her own script. Drawing and coloring scenes from these dreams is one way to learn more about where your child feels confident and strong as well as where she may benefit from encouragement. Plus, having conversations about good dreams opens the door to safely exploring all dreams, both good and bad, without making your child feel interrogated or on the spot.

Ability to Fly When Being Chased by Villains
A common theme among children age six and up is being able to run extremely fast when being chased by bad guys. In the dream, the child sometimes runs so fast and so well that she actually takes off from the ground and begins to fly. The villains give chase, but the child’s ability to fly is her safety valve, and she can always outwit the bad guys with this superior power and manage to escape. This tends to be a recurring dream, and it may repeat occasionally, well into young adulthood.

What you need to know:
Children who have this dream usually have a significant challenge that disturbs them. The villains represent the pressure, and the ability to fly represents their own wish to escape, as well as their own sense that they have the intelligence, imagination and power to make their life work out better. Children who have lost a parent, who face economic struggles, who have a sibling that requires special care or who face some challenge that is part of the fabric of daily life seem to have this dream. The good news is that many successful adults report having had this dream during challenging early years. It appears the dream not only denotes the sense of challenge the child faces, but also hints at abilities and intelligence gathering steam to be applied in later years.

A Harmless Creature Turns Menacing
In these dreams, a friendly squirrel is let in the window and turns out to be vicious and violent. Or a beloved toy comes to life and turns into a weird monster. Even a ball of yarn or a baseball glove can morph into something suddenly menacing that stalks your child in the nightmare.

What you need to know:
The theme of something ordinary, even beloved, turning into a threat suggests that your child may be struggling with some situation or person that is usually known and kind, but may sometimes seem inexplicably difficult and harsh. The real-life parallel to the dream may be that your child is dealing with something that seems fine most of the time, but occasionally seems to turn against her. This could be anything from a playground buddy who occasionally plays unfairly to a situation at home that becomes confusing because it flips back and forth between “normal” and “unsettling.”

The Witch
Many youngsters dream of a wicked witch in the tradition of the character in The Wizard of Oz. This witch may be terribly scary, or it may be a more ambiguous character with some redeeming qualities.

What you need to know:
As with monsters, the witch could represent a real-life person in your child’s world, one who is sometimes cranky and unfair. If you suspect the witch may be a science-fiction cartoon of you in your worst moments, don’t take this as an indictment of your worth as a parent. Rather, use the appearance of such dreams as a measure of your child’s confusion and worry. Think about how often you wish for your own reassurance. Then let your child know that she’s always got someone in her corner.

A Mean Animal
These dreams usually involve being chased or attacked by a wild animal, or even a domestic animal that has become enraged. The bull, the lion or the giant spider that chases the child may be a recurring image in a series of chase dreams.

What you need to know:
The animals that give chase in dreams typically represent a situation involving some person that could be troubling to your child. While such nightmares are not necessarily an indication of a serious situation, it may be useful to ask your child to draw the mean animal and to share with you the typical story line of the dream. Because your child probably won’t make any connections between the scary dream and a scary life situation, you’ll want to inquire at another time whether there is anyone at school or in the neighborhood that she finds scary.

Being Exposed
Children, like adults, sometimes dream of going out in public without their clothes on or trying to use a lavatory that is unfortunately out in an open area where others can observe them.

What you need to know:
Dreams of public elimination or being unclothed are usually symbolic of a sense of exposure. These dreams usually occur when the youngster is moved into an environment where the expectations are higher, such as starting school or going on to a higher grade. They are not an indication of incipient trouble, but may be puzzling because they tend to occur when the child has done well enough to be moved forward or has made new friends. This is a time to remind the youngster that it takes time to settle into new surroundings and that there is plenty of time to learn the ropes in this new environment.

Being Trapped
In some dreams, the child is paralyzed and cannot run, or she is trapped in a closet or caught somewhere when a crisis occurs.

What you need to know:
These themes of being trapped when the child most needs to run suggest there is something unsettling that she finds threatening in some way. They also suggest that there are forces or expectations in the situation that make it difficult for the child to express or protect herself. If, for example, your child senses tension between you and your spouse but you keep assuring her that nothing is wrong, she is left in a bind. She feels and accumulates fear and pressure, but it’s officially off-limits to find out what is going on or talk about the situation with you.

You can help relieve the tension by allowing her to describe her dreams, including what is most scary about them and what puts her in the bind. Don’t share your analysis of the dreams with her. Just inviting her to talk about them will help her feel she can communicate more freely and have more control, and that you are interested in her experience.

How to Talk to Your Child about Dreams
In general, it’s beneficial to set aside time at the breakfast table each morning to talk about your child’s dreams. (You can share some of your own dreams too, if you remember them.) Doing this will let your child know that this is a safe and even fun part of life to be shared, just as if you were talking about favorite books or movies. Drawing dreams, making a game of dressing up and “fixing” the scary ending in a make-believe drama are also good ways to help your child express her dreams, and will ultimately give her a sense of control over both the subconscious and conscious events in her daily life.

 

See ivillage for more :  http://www.ivillage.com/your-childs-top-10-nightmares-and-dreams/6-a-128425?p=1

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Eugene Field (another poem)

Pittypat and Tippytoe
by Eugene Field (1850-1895)

All day long they come and go—
Pittypat and Tippytoe;
Footprints up and down the hall,
Playthings scattered on the floor,
Finger-marks along the wall,
Tell-tale smudges on the door—
By these presents you shall know
Pittypat and Tippytoe.

How they riot at their play!
And a dozen times a day
In they troop, demanding bread—
Only buttered bread will do,
And the butter must be spread
Inches thick with sugar too!
And I never can say “No,
Pittypat and Tippytoe!”

Sometimes there are griefs to soothe,
Sometimes ruffled brows to smooth;
For (I much regret to say)
Tippytoe and Pittypat
Sometimes interrupt their play
With an internecine spat;
Fie, for shame! to quarrel so—
Pittypat and Tippytoe!

Oh the thousand worrying things
Every day recurrent brings!
Hands to scrub and hair to brush,
Search for playthings gone amiss,
Many a wee complaint to hush,
Many a little bump to kiss;
Life seems one vain, fleeting show
To Pittypat and Tippytoe!

And when day is at an end,
There are little duds to mend;
Little frocks are strangely torn,
Little shoes great holes reveal,
Little hose, but one day worn,
Rudely yawn at toe and heel!
Who but you could work such woe,
Pittypat and Tippytoe?

But when comes this thought to me:
“Some there are that childless be,”
Stealing to their little beds,
With a love I cannot speak,
Tenderly I stroke their heads—
Fondly kiss each velvet cheek.
God help those who do not know
A Pittypat or Tippytoe!

On the floor and down the hall,
Rudely smutched upon the wall,
There are proofs in every kind
Of the havoc they have wrought,
And upon my heart you ‘d find
Just such trade-marks, if you sought;
Oh, how glad I am ‘t is so,
Pittypat and Tippytoe!

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Importance of Board Games –

The Benefits of Board Games _ Scholastic

Playing games with your kids is a perfect way to spend time together — and build learning skills at the same time.

What your child most wants — and needs — is to be with you with no goal in mind beyond the joy of spending time together. He wants you to take pleasure in him, play with him, and listen to him. Nothing bolsters his self-esteem more! So why not pull out an old board game tonight? Playing games is an easy and excellent way to spend unhurried, enjoyable time together. As an added bonus, board games are also rich in learning opportunities. They satisfy your child’s competitive urges and the desire to master new skills and concepts, such as:

  • number and shape recognition, grouping, and counting
  • letter recognition and reading
  • visual perception and color recognition
  • eye-hand coordination and manual dexterity

Games don’t need to be overtly academic to be educational, however. Just by virtue of playing them, board games can teach important social skills, such as communicating verbally, sharing, waiting, taking turns, and enjoying interaction with others. Board games can foster the ability to focus, and lengthen your child’s attention span by encouraging the completion of an exciting, enjoyable game. Even simple board games like Chutes and Ladders offer meta-messages and life skills: Your luck can change in an instant — for the better or for the worse. The message inherent in board games is: Never give up. Just when you feel despondent, you might hit the jackpot and ascend up high, if you stay in the game for just a few more moves.

Board games have distinct boundaries. Living in a complex society, children need clear limits to feel safe. By circumscribing the playing field — much as tennis courts and football fields will do later — board games can help your child weave her wild and erratic side into a more organized, mature, and socially acceptable personality. After all, staying within the boundaries (not intruding on others’ space, for example) is crucial to leading a successful social and academic life.

A Word About Winning
Children take game playing seriously, so it’s important that we help guide them through the contest. When a playing piece falls to a lower level, our kids really feel sad; when it rises up high, they are remarkably proud and happy, even if we adults know that it happened only by chance. Therefore, you need to help balance your child’s pleasure in playing the game with his very limited ability to manage frustration and deal with the idea of losing.

For 3, 4, and even 5 year olds, winning is critical to a feeling of mastery. So generally, I think it’s okay to “help” them win. By about 6, kids should begin to internalize the rules of fair play, tenuous as they may seem to a child who is losing a game. So I am also fine with a 6 year old “amending” the rules to win if he feels she has to. I encourage you to acknowledge your child’s need for special rules. At the start of the game, you might want to ask, “Are we playing by regular or cheating rules today?”

Choosing the Right Game at Every Age
While in the long run we need to teach values, ethics, academic skills, and the importance of playing by the rules, in the early years the primary goals are helping your child become more self-confident and ambitious and to enjoy playing with others. If you’re playing with more than one child, divide the family into teams, giving each player a job he can do well: A younger child may be responsible for rolling the dice (which he considers important, since that is where the luck comes from), and an older child the job of sorting the Monopoly money.

As children approach 5, they have more sophisticated thinking skills and can begin to incorporate and exercise their number, letter, and word knowledge in literacy-based games. By 6, children may prefer more cognitively challenging games like checkers, which require and help develop planning, strategy, persistence, and critical thinking skills. Here are some of our favorite game picks for 5 and 6 year olds.

  • Scrabble Junior (Milton Bradley): This is the younger cousin of the tremendously educational and challenging Scrabble, which we all know and love. Using large yellow letter tiles, players match letters to words already written on one side of the board. The reverse side has an open grid where older children can create their own words.
    Learning highlights: Fosters literacy and language skills.
  • Boggle Junior (Parker Brothers): The prelude to Boggle — one of the best learning games for older kids — is Boggle Junior, in which players link pictures to letters and words. The game comes with 6-sided letter cubes and numerous picture cards that have the name of the object spelled below. Players place a card on a blue tray and use 3- or 4-letter cubes to copy the item’s spelling. Older children can hide the written words and spell the word just using the picture.
    Learning highlights: Teaches letters, words, spelling, and matching skills.
  • Zingo (Think Fun Company): One of this year’s “hot” games, this Bingo-style matching game relies on a player’s ability to spot pictures (of a dog, say, or the sun) and match them quickly to the words and pictures on his play card. As in Bingo, the first one to finish a complete line of items wins.
    Learning Highlights: Encourages matching skills and quick thinking.
  • Monopoly Junior (Parker Brothers): As they do in its senior sibling, players roll dice to move around the game board and buy real estate. The game is shorter and uses smaller dollar denominations so kids can figure out winnings and penalties more quickly. 
    Learning Highlights: Develops math, color recognition, reading, reasoning, and social skills.
  • Junior Labyrinth (Ravensburger): Each player gets a large, easy-to-handle piece shaped like a ghost, which she moves through an extra-large maze in an attempt to reach a treasure. While the path may appear straight, the walls move and shift, so getting there is a challenge. This game imparts the idea of impermanence and change, since a path that was open just a moment ago might now be closed and vice versa. Players have to figure out what to do when circumstances change unexpectedly — a good life skill to learn.
    Learning highlights: Teaches spatial relations and relies on some manual dexterity.
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Family Traditions by Dr. Laura Markham

Rituals and Traditions That Bring Families Closer

“The goal of rituals is connection. Rituals create sacred space designated for togetherness and unity.” – Becky A. Bailey, Ph.D.

Why do families need rituals?

What’s a ritual?  It’s a routine with meaning.  Children love ritual.  Repetition, the comfort of belonging, the sense of wonder, magic, and celebration — all Photo: Phil Cantorcreate a bonding experience that nurtures both kids and parents.  Rituals hold families together.

Why do we need rituals?  It’s primal.  They help us move emotionally from one place to another; they ease pain, acknowledge growth, and create connection. 

Rituals are invaluable to families, as most parents discover.  Daily rituals like bedtime stories and goodbye hugs make separations easier and provide comfort and security. Traditions like taking a picture on the front steps on the first day of school and letting kids stay up till midnight on New Year’s Eve help children integrate the changes of the year. Rituals like bar mitzvahs and Christmas Eve mass communicate values in a visceral way.

In a secular culture, many parents who don’t relate  to organized religion find that rituals and traditions give the sense of meaning and anchoring they seek.  All rituals reinforce values and create connection.

Studies show that happy families not only have treasured traditions, they evolve new ones that help them find their way through the inevitable changes of growing up, as well as create warm bonds and a sense of security.

“The idea of starting a family tradition sounds overwhelming.”

Don’t worry, your family already has its own traditions, from Sunday morning pancakes to observing holidays in a certain way. The way you celebrate birthdays, mark the passing of pet or observe a special day, the way you say goodbye to each other every morning or shop for fall clothes each school year; all are the stuff of which memories are made.

 

“Ok, but how do I create traditions that nurture family connected-ness?”

Creating new traditions that work for your family is a simple matter.  Try something new, and if you like it, repeat it.  Then begin to talk about it and look forward to it with the whole family.  Eventually, that tradition will take on a life of its own and will become a sustaining part of your family’s culture.

“And what about rituals?  Are they different?”  We might think of rituals as a tradition carried out in a more sacred way, usually the same way every time. Singing the Chanuka blessings or saying Grace before meals are obvious examples, but so are singing Happy Birthday and blowing out candles.  It may not seem that “Sleep tight, don’t let the bedbugs bite!” is sacred, but all repetitious chants  are essentially prayers, satisfying a primal human need. Kids love rituals and gain a sense of safety from them.

“Are rituals easy to create?”  You don’t need to do anything fancy. Most rituals use either the lighting of candles or the repetition of a phrase or song as an invocation, or a beginning.  Sometimes that’s all there is to them, as in the case of a particular goodbye saying.  Other rituals, like going around the table at Thanksgiving to say what we’re thankful for, have “content.”  And virtually all have a closing, signaling that sacred space is over and we return to daily life, as when the birthday candles are blown out, or we say “Amen” at the end of a prayer.

 

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Make Your Own Candy Corn!

Cakespy: Homemade Candy Corn

Cakespy: Homemade Candy Corn

Note: Jessie Oleson (aka Cakespy) drops by every Monday to share a delicious dessert recipe.

[Photographs and art: Jessie Oleson]

Ever wondered how candy corn is made? Well, to give you the short answer, with lots of equipment, over a four to five day period. But don’t let the process daunt you, because it is possible to make your own micro-batches of the classic Halloween candy at home.

This surprisingly simple recipe yields large, plump candy kernels infused with a sweet vanilla flavor. I found that using salted butter adds a nice, rich finish. Conclusion? These homespun tricolor treats are definitely worth the time and effort. Once you’ve tasted them, you may never buy candy corn by the bag again.

20091012cakespycandycorn2.jpg

Cakespy: Homemade Candy Corn

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Ingredients

  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/3 cup salted butter
  • 2 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, sifted
  • 1/3 cup powdered milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • red and yellow food coloring

Procedures

  1. 1

    In a medium sized bowl, combine the sifted confectioners’ sugar and powdered milk. Set to the side.

  2. 2

    In a medium saucepan, combine the granulated sugar, corn syrup and butter. Bring to a boil on high heat, stirring constantly. Once it reaches the boiling point, reduce heat to medium and continue stirring for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Stir in the vanilla extract and remove from heat.

  3. 3

    Add the confectioners’ sugar and powdered milk mixture to the wet ingredients; stir well until the mixture is thoroughly incorporated and smooth.

  4. 4

    Let the dough cool until it is firm enough to handle, about 30 minutes to an hour (I just let it cool in the saucepan).

  5. 5

    Divide the dough into three equal parts and set each third into a separate bowl. Add 2 to 3 drops of yellow food coloring to one dish, one drop of red and two drops of yellow to another dish, and leave the remaining dish uncolored. Knead the dough to which you have added food coloring until the color is even (you may want to use gloves to ensure that you don’t stain yourself). If the dough is feeling very soft or sticky, you may want to chill the dough for about 20 minutes in the refrigerator before proceeding with the next steps.

  6. 6

    On top of a sheet of waxed paper or parchment paper, use your hands to roll each color of dough into a long, slender rope. You can roll it out to your desired thickness: for larger candies, make each rope thicker; for smaller candies, make each rope thinner.

  7. 7

    Line the three ropes of dough together: white, orange, and yellow. To ensure that they will stick together, lay a piece of waxed paper on top and give them a very gentle rolling with a rolling pin. You just want to adhere them, not to flatten them.

  8. 8

    Using a very sharp knife, cut the dough into triangles. Keep a damp cloth nearby so that you can wipe off the knife if it begins to get a candy residue. This method will result in half a batch of traditionally colored candy corn and half a batch with yellow tips (it’s OK—they taste the same). Let the finished kernels sit for an hour or two (do not stack them on top of one another as they will stick together!) to become firm.

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ROCK CANDY!

Making your own rock candy is a fun and tasty way to grow crystals and see the structure of sugar on a big scale. Sugar crystals in granulated sugar display a monoclinic form, but you can see the shape much better in homegrown large crystals. This recipe is for rock candy that you can eat. You can color and flavor the candy, too.

Rock Candy Materials

Basically all you need to make rock candy is sugar and hot water. The color of your crystals will depend on the type of sugar you use (raw sugar is more golden and refined granulated sugar) and whether or not you add coloring. Any food-grade colorant will work.

  • 3 cups sugar (sucrose)
  • 1 cup water
  • clean glass jar
  • cotton string
  • pencil or knife
  • food coloring (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp flavoring oil or extract (optional)
  • Lifesaver candy (optional)
  • pan
  • stove or microwave

Make Rock Candy

  1. Pour the sugar and water into the pan.
  2. Heat the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. You want the sugar solution to hit boiling, but not get hotter or cook too long. If you overheat the sugar solution you’ll make hard candy, which is nice, but not what we’re going for here. Stir the solution until all the sugar has dissolved. The liquid will be clear or straw-colored, without any sparkly sugar. If you can get even more sugar to dissolve, that’s good, too.
  3. If desired, you can add food coloring and flavoring to the solution. Mint, cinnamon, or lemon extract are good flavorings to try. Squeezing the juice from a lemon, orange, or lime is a way to give the crystals natural flavor, but the acid and other sugars in the juice may slow your crystal formation. Set the pot of sugar syrup in the refrigerator to cool. You want the liquid to be about 50°F (slightly cooler than room temperature). Sugar becomes less soluble as it cools, so chilling the mixture will make it so there is less chance of accidentally dissolving sugar you are about to coat on your string.
  4. While the sugar solution is cooling, prepare your string. You are using cotton string because it is rough and non-toxic. Tie the string to a pencil, knife, or other object that can rest across the top of the jar. You want the string to hang into the jar, but not touch the sides or bottom.
  5. You don’t want to weight your string with anything toxic, so rather than use a metal object, you can tie a Lifesaver to the bottom of the string.
  6. Whether you are using the Lifesaver or not, you want to ‘seed’ the string with crystals so that the rock candy will form on the string rather than on the sides and bottom of the jar. There are two easy ways to do this. One is to dampen the string with a little of the syrup you just made and dip the string in sugar. Another option is to soak the string in the syrup and then hang it to dry, which will cause crystals to form naturally (this method produces ‘chunkier’ rock candy crystals).
  7. Once your solution has cooled, pour it into the clean jar. Suspend the seeded string in the liquid. Set the jar somewhere quiet. You can cover the jar with a paper towel or coffee filter to keep the solution clean.
  8. Check on your crystals, but don’t disturb them. You can remove them to dry and eat when you are satisfied with the size of your rock candy. Ideally you want to allow the crystals to grow for 3-7 days.
  9. You can help your crystals grow by removing (and eating) any sugar ‘crust’ that forms on top of the liquid. If you notice a lot of crystals forming on the sides and bottom of the container and not on your string, remove your string and set it aside. Pour the crystallized solution into a saucepan and boil/cool it (just like when you make the solution). Add it to a clean jar and suspend your growing rock candy crystals. You can watch a video tutorial for making rock candy if you would like to see what to expect.
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Most Popular Kid Gifts 1913 – 2013

Most Popular Gifts in 1913 and 2013
By JOANNA PRISCO via Good Morning America

Christmas Wish List from 1915 Will Make You Feel Materialistic

“Our newspaper collection includes over 120 million pages dating back to 1609, and a quick search using the keywords “Dear Santa” brings really interesting results,” reads the blog. “The further back we looked, the more interesting – and frequently more simple – the requests became. It added color to the lives and times of our ancestors, particularly when we looked at what children are asking for this year.”

Top-Rated Toys of This and Other Seasons: A Gift Guide

Check out the MyHeritage list of the most commonly requested presents from 100 years ago:

1913:

1. Candy

2. Nuts

3. Rocking horse

4. Doll

5. Mittens/gloves

6. Toy train

7. Oranges

8. Books

9. Handkerchiefs

10. Skates

Now take a look at the items topping contemporary lists:

2013:

1. Furby Boom

2. Teksta Robotic puppy

3. LeapPad Ultra

4. Flying Fairy

5. Bug Hugs Elmo

6. Barbie Dream house

7. Giggly Monkey

8. Nerf Gun

9. Ninja Turtles

10. Lego

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