The Pregnant Barbie

The Most Controversial American Toy: The Pregnant Barbie

Technically, the name of the toy is “Midge Hadley”, but everybody just knows the doll as “Pregnant Barbie”. The doll was first released in 1963 from Mattel. Midge was released at the same time as “Skipper” to avoid criticism. Midge Hadley is Barbie’s best friend (as Mattel advertises it). Because of the controversy, Mattel stopped manufacturing the pregnant Barbie after the 1960’s until 1988 when they released Midge again in the “Happy family line” where she has a boyfriend, Alan Sherwood and three children: 3 year old Ryan, newborn Nikki, and (unknown age) Casandra. Midge Hadley came loaded with a magnetic tummy and baby Nikki which could be inserted in her stomach. Because Alan was not packaged with Midge and she did not have a ring, this “Happy Family Line” again received criticism stating this promoted teen pregnancy, inappropriate for children, and promoted unwedded child birth. Parents criticized the toy saying, “she looked too young to have children” which caused retail stores to pull the Happy Family Line off of the shelves.

It isn’t all negative. Later on Midge was packaged with a picture of Alan and Ryan on the packaging. Midge was also redesigned with a ring! However, Mattel seized production yet again and only released a special edition of the vintage version of Midge in 1993 and 1998. Mattel decided to reintroduce Midge in 2013 as Barbie’s best friend, but unmarried and with no children. Midge Hadley is one of the most controversial toys around.

Now in the present, the only thing close to finding a toy like Midge is buying generic or finding the vintage doll online. The average price for a vintage Midge Hadley is upper hundreds. The doll is a classic and is packed with years of controversial history. The generic version of Midge Hadley usually comes with a shirt/dress, shoes, the pregnant detachable belly, baby, and the doll. Sometimes you can find a stroller and crib with the generic version of the doll depending on where you search for the doll. The generic pregnant doll comes with a detailed face and the same hair material used by Mattel. The generic version can be a “quick fix” for finding a pregnant doll worthy for your child’s play time. The doll is educational and could promote children’s learning experience. These pregnant dolls can arguably be a great educational tool for children with a pregnant mother expecting a new child.

Do What You Are Supposed to Do

Do What You Are Supposed to Do

It’s the bottom of the 9th. Bases are loaded. Two outs. Up by one, and the pitcher looks worn out. The manager signals the bullpen. The door swings opens and a pitcher trots out towards the mound to the chant of, “Here comes old reliable.” We know exactly what this person is going to do. He or she is going to get us out of this jam by getting that third out. Yah!

We all admire someone with the strong and consistent skills to be a true game changer. We all would love to be the kind of person that can really make things happen. However, this peak seems so far away to most of us. Yet, somehow, we still quite frequently see star players sitting up on that peak that we all want to be on. How do they do that?

Well, to start off, star players are not just sitting immobile up on that peak. Star players are probably doing what they have always done. They have always worked really hard, every day, to get to that peak. And now that they are up there, they are not just lazily sitting there. But, rather, they continue to work really hard every day to maintain that special peak performance because they are supposed to! That’s right! They are supposed to. The great ones, the ones that look like they don’t need the extra work, do what they are supposed to do (extra) when they are supposed to do it (every day), even when they don’t feel like doing it!

Do they always love the extra work that is sometimes tedious? No. But they do it anyways!

Now teens, go learn, lead, and lay the way to a better world for all of us. Always remember to do what you are supposed to do, when you are supposed to do it, even when you don’t feel like doing it, and someday, you may be called for when the team is in a pinch! And once again, thanks in advance for all that you do, and all that you will do…

Kids Responsibility

5 Ways to Teach Kids Responsibility

Every parent wishes their kid to be responsible which means managing their belongings and taking care of themselves as well as others. However, teaching responsibility to your kids doesn’t happen overnight, it takes time because kids learn slowly and gradually.

1) Build habits
Kids learn responsibility in the same way they learn to walk and talk, i.e. step by step. It is important to make it a point to start teaching your children about responsibility when they are growing, like from the age of 2-3 years. Kids are developing at this age, and you can mold them easily. For children who are in kindergarten, you can ask for their help while you are making bed, ask them to drop the empty dishes in the sink, etc. For school-goers, you can ask them to make their own bed, organize their wardrobes, clean their room, and so forth. Also, teach them some self-care by asking them to brush their teeth by themselves, washing their hands before having meals, turning off lights of the room when not in use, and alike.

Let your kids give you a helping hand around home, making them responsible too. Assign them work, which is easy for them to follow and ask them to stick to it regularly.

2) Teach by Example
Lead your kids by example. So, rather than asking your juniors to be more responsible, set an example for them. This way they learn easily and are able to retain things for longer period of time. As a parent, you know what perfect behavior your kids should display. Telling your kids to be responsible is one thing and teaching them through your example is another, the latter one being more effective. As a parent you are the perfect person to model what responsible behavior involves or what responsible behavior looks like. If you are reaching on time everywhere, you are setting an example of punctuality.

3) Compliment when they are responsible
Whenever your child acts responsibly, make sure to praise him for his good behavior. It’s not enough to just notice your kid’s behavior; you need to praise them too. All this helps to positively strengthen their behavior. For instance, appreciate them by saying that you wonderfully made the bed; and so on. When kids hear good compliments from their parents, they will be gleeful and are more likely to repeat such behavior in the future.

4) Be polite and convincing
Every time when you blame your kiddos for being irresponsible, you are covering up the real problem or issue with the highly emotional language. During such arguments, kids get defensive and fighting back is their only recourse and they might use some harsh words & become rude as well.

Thus it is always better to use language, which is less emotionally charged in order to resolve the conflicts. It is always good to focus on the specific irresponsible act rather that the general problem of “irresponsibility.” For instance, “Homework needs to be completed. How are you preparing to do that?” and so forth. You also need to make sure not to bring all the old times your kid acted irresponsibly. Like adults, kids also can’t take so much criticism.

5) Guide them the Way
You should show your kid’s ways of being responsible. For instance, if your kid wants some snacks, direct them where they are and ask them to help themselves. If your little one after coming from school or play, throw away his clothes here & there, then put a hamper in the room and ask your kid to put them there. Just make little angels feel important and grown-up and they will do what you say.

Screen Time for Kids

Screen Time for Kids

Education today is not limited to schools. It engulfs in itself the role of a teacher, mother, media (Print & Electronic) and environment. Each child is different from the other. We see kids operating smart phones and tablets around us every day. With invasion of technology in our lives it has become inevitable to keep the kids away from it. Although it comes as a supplementary education system for parents, it also has its varied concerns.

These days the distance between eye and screen (Television & Mobile) has reduced. Long hours on laptops, tablets and smart phones have reduced the social circle of a child. Nowadays children prefer to watch TV or mobile in their free hours. A survey revealed that 80% of kids named cartoon characters as their best friends over real kids.

It can become a topic of debate between parents; depending upon viewing hours they allow their kids these days on electronic gadgets. A well laid out plan of action involving supervision with independence to explore is the key to an overall development of a child.

It is very important to update your child with the latest technologies alongside the moral values that can only be inculcated through a parent’s indulgence. Various activity based games should become a part of your child’s daily routine that can be supplemented with a few hours of screen viewing. As a parent you should decide the viewing hours and pattern for your child.

Technology definitely adds to our existence but it also paralyses us to an extent. It is important to strike a balance between personal and gadgets dependence. A healthy and learning environment can be created in and outside the house with very little inputs. These inputs can be in the form of group play activities involving children with screen presence for an educational video or game.

There is not set standards on how much a child should be dependent on these secondary education gadgets. It depends upon a parent to decide seeing the pattern of learning of their child. The most important aspect to be considered while deciding the viewing hours of a child should incorporate a healthy physical and mental growth.

Growing With Your Child

Growing With Your Child

Often we hear people say, “I love you”, as simple as it sounds a universe of care and protection is engulfed in it. The most defined meaning of love can be seen between a newly born and the parent. Their whole world sums up to just one word, MY CHILD.

Responsibilities come with parenthood and they keep increasing their horizon as the child grows. Initially it starts with feeding the newborn timely, changing diapers and taking proper care of their health related issues. At this point the communication is one sided and more understanding of sign language is involved (for obvious reasons because a newly born can’t talk).

Once a child learns to walk; the responsibilities of a parent include creating space and making their house an accident free zone. All sharp corners are covered and everything fragile finds a place on top shelves. The communication process takes a leap further, now both can understand what is expected of the other (actions now are specific and result oriented).

As soon as the child starts going to school, a parent’s responsibility takes a wide turn. For the first time a child leaves the comfort of his house and goes to a place where everyone is a stranger. The role of a parent here is to find, “A home away from home”. Education becomes priority and teachers become secondary parent. During this phase the psychology of a child changes because he is surrounded by similar ages who speak and does the same. They learn new things (Good and bad) and looks for all possible ways to implement them.

Adolescence is the age where communication strives to survive the most. The hormonal change in a child wants him/her to be independent and to be able to shoulder responsibilities on their own. As a parent we expect them to be immature and with little knowledge of right and wrong. This results in break of communication between the two. Only key to survive this situation is, “hearing”. As a parent we must give some responsibilities with authority to our child. This will boost their confidence and will help them to initiate efforts in little things in life. Conversation between the two should become a daily routine and it should be followed by regular updates.

Guidance and moral support is required when a child finishes school and strives hard to adjust in the real world (Survival of the fittest theory applies here). A parent’s mere responsibility here is to stand by his/her child in their decisions. They are mature enough to understand their better and things that affect their growth in life. Be there for them when they need and also when they don’t.