Too Many Food Things?

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Sometimes I hear people say that kids these days have too much. I can see that. Most contemporary kids in this nation from middle-income homes do seem to have too much. Too much food, too much to play with, too much to watch. Too many activities to do, too many clothes to wear, too many choices to make. Just too many things!

It’s natural for one generation to feel that the next generation has far more things and/or has more going for them. But…

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Do contemporary kids have more things than the previous generations of kids?

 

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According to the most recent statistics about how much it costs to raise a child in America,

 

“…a child born in 2013 from birth to an 18-year-old adult is $245,340 for middle-income families with two parents and up to five children. For low-income families, this cost is $176,550. For high-income families, it is $407,820.”

 

Historically, “Between 1960 and 2011, the cost of raising a child grew by $40,000, or 23% in 2011 dollars, according to a new study by the USDA.”

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Does this mean that contemporary kids in America are actually getting more things or is it just that much more expensive to live?

Also, what things exactly are they getting more of and do these things make them better off and/or give them more opportunity than the kids of previous generations?

In order to get answers to these questions, it’s important to first look at the basics and find out what contemporary children actually need. Then, a fair comparison can be made between the different generations of kids.

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All kids (all humans for that matter) have always had basic physical needs that demand to be met-air to breathe, food to eat, water to drink and a home to live in for shelter.

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Depending on where they live around the world, the needs of children differ, particularly concerning what type of living conditions they have.

 

Children around the globe, are faced with environmental risks. These and threats to their natural resources affect the air they breathe and determine what the air quality will be like for generations of children to come.

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(*I’ll be addressing more about national and global child housing, child household items and environmental issues that children face in the blogs following this one.)

 

 

What about access to healthy drinking water?

Before 1974, drinking water around the world was a cause for concern and a public issue due to pollutants present in the water. In response, Congress passed The Safe Drinking Water Act.

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The Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) is the federal law that protects public drinking water supplies throughout the nation. Under the SDWA, the Environmental Protection Agency or EPA sets standards for drinking water quality and with its partner’s implements various technical and financial programs to ensure drinking water safety.

 

This is not a perfect system and considering the recent crisis in Flint, Michigan, the EPA continues to face challenges with regulating the quality of drinking water in certain areas of the nation. For the most part, and because of measures such as the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Lead and Copper Rule, the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, most American children have access to healthy drinking water.

shutterstock_217539169In 2010, due to the rise in childhood obesity in America because of a raised intake of soda and other sugar-sweetened drinks, the U.S. Congress also passed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. This requires schools to offer healthy beverages such as milk, water, and 100% juice in schools and make safe drinking water available during mealtimes to students at no charge.

Unfortunately, around the globe, 663 million people – 1 in 10 – lack access to safe water and

1/3 of all schools lack access to safe water and adequate sanitation.

 

Globally there is much room for improvement with regards to safe water.

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The food shortages that the children of the world face is another issue.

shutterstock_136547222As far as basic food needs, while it seems huge, only a small portion of the contemporary kids in our nation have to go without food compared to those who live in developing countries.

However, this is still an overwhelming figure. According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), “13.1 million children under 18 in the United States live in households where they are unable to consistently access enough nutritious food necessary for a healthy life.”

Globally, “the poorest 20 percent of the world’s children are about twice as likely as the richest 20 percent to be stunted by poor nutrition and to die before their fifth birthday.” shutterstock_192555887

 

This is really grim. 

 

This recent child hunger data can be compared to that of research found in 1960 that states: “There was little public discussion of the subject during the post-Depression era until the mid-1960s, when unscientific but dramatic media exposés of the extent of hunger in the country helped launch the “war on poverty.”

 

It was later revealed that, “between 1977 and 1991, from 2% to 4% of households in the United States reported that they sometimes or often did not have enough to eat.

shutterstock_143796796Additionally, in the mid 1980’s, following a recession and reductions in federal food assistance programs, “the Physicians’ Task Force on Hunger in America reported that 20 million Americans were “hungry.”

 

Globally children’s needs may differ, but relatively, there are still many children all around the world that are not having their basic needs met when it comes to food and water.

Understandably, developing countries continue to struggle and face child hunger, but why does the richest nation in the world still have starving people in it? 

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More than 48 million Americans rely on what used to be called food stamps, now SNAP: the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Low-income families in our nation depend on this and other nutrition programs such as the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), and the School Breakfast Program, so they will have food security for their children.

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“Food security exists when all people, at all times, have physical and economic access to sufficient, safe and nutritious food to meet their dietary needs and food preferences for an active and healthy life.”

 

dreamstime_xl_40211279Food is one thing that every child has always needed and always will, yet not every contemporary child in America is getting their fair share of it.

 

 

Low-income families suffer the most by not getting access to proper food and nutrition.

 

shutterstock_72579025“Obesity among food insecure people – as well as among low-income people – occurs in part because they are subject to the same often challenging cultural changes as other Americans (e.g., more sedentary lifestyles, increased portion sizes), and also because they face unique challenges in adopting and maintaining healthful behaviors.

 

A major reason for this disparity may be because low-income families are living in “neighborhoods that frequently lack full-service grocery stores and farmers’ markets where residents can buy a variety of high-quality fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy products.” 

shutterstock_15454807Ironically, for some kids, absence and excess of money can create a diet that lacks healthy food or food poverty.

 

According to a survey, released by the Centers for Disease Control, “America’s love for fast food is surprisingly income blind. Well-off kids, poor kids, and all those in between tend to get about the same percentage of their calories from fast food.”

 

Interesting and sad. 

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The percentage of children aged 6–11 years in the United States who were obese increased from 7% in 1980 to nearly 18% in 2012. 

In America, some kids just aren’t getting enough food. Some are getting just enough. Surprisingly, a lot are getting too many food things and some of these foods aren’t healthy enough.

Something needs to change. 

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Overall, contemporary kids have similar and more complex basic needs and food related challenges than those of previous generations.

Middle-income kids in America have more opportunity than most, but they have their own set of new problems because of this. 

 

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Child hunger still exists all around the globe, and while there are many programs in place to combat this; food insecurity, food poverty, and food obesity problems are ever present in our world.

The solution?

Awareness. Also, a continued effort to supply, distribute and share the nation’s supply of food things equally to this generation and hopefully to those in the next.   

Something can be done.

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screen-shot-2016-11-09-at-9-24-48-pmTracy Bryan is an award-winning Indie author. She writes whimsical books for kids ages 4-12. She likes to tackle important and diverse topics that affect kids and their families.

Tracy just released her debut fiction picture book called Put Away Your Phone! with illustrator David Barrow. They are currently working on their next book together called Too Many Things! due to be out early 2017!

Food Charities for Child Hunger

http://www.feedingamerica.org

http://www.actionforhealthykids.org

http://www.feedthechildren.org

https://www.nokidhungry.org

http://www.actionagainsthunger.org

Organizations for Childhood Nutrition Awareness

https://www.healthychildren.org/English/healthy-living/nutrition/Pages/Childhood-Nutrition.aspx

https://www.healthiergeneration.org

http://thefoodtrust.org

http://www.actionforhealthykids.org

http://www.farmtoschool.org

https://www.nationaleatingdisorders.org/parent-toolkit

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There’s No Place Like Home… (And Community)

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I just came through my first hurricane.

Thankfully, my family, my home and myself were all left unscathed. Aside from some minor inconveniences, I actually gained insight from this distressing experience.

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Hurricane Matthew hit Haiti the hardest and the beginnings of this fierce storm left far too many deaths in its wake. This deeply saddens me and I can only hope that the world will stand together to help clean up this destruction. It pleasantly surprises me though, at times like this, of all the wonderful people that go out of their way to help others.

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While most television and media representatives want to show the devastation of communities by this natural disaster, I want to share with you how it brought me closer to mine.

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I feel so fortunate to live in a place that has incredible preparation and response to storms like these. The communities around me weren’t terribly affected by Matthew, mostly because they knew he was coming, and prepared accordingly with first world measures.

Everyone hopes that there will be someone(s) there to help them during a storm like this, and it’s a huge relief to know that most communities in this nation provide this. With rescue teams, shelters and trained professionals, most people have these emergency fallbacks and know that someone will be there for them.

Thank you to everyone who was and is there for me and my family.

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I don’t know what I’d do or feel if my community didn’t have this. Most likely, I’d feel terrified, do what I could to prepare for it, endure it, all while hoping for a safe outcome.

I believe that to a certain extent, no matter where you live and how much support you have, at times like this everyone feels a little fear. The only thing you can do is hope for the best.

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Gratefully, the best is exactly what happened to me and my family. We are all alive and unharmed and our home is still intact. We lost a few trees and our power went out, but that was really the worst of it. THANK YOU MATTHEW!

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So, what happens when you go through something like this and you come out in one piece? Personally, I try to notice those around me and practice a little more gratitude, kindness, and compassion. 

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After the storm died down and the winds slowed, my family and I ventured out. We curiously walked around in our community to see how it was affected by the storm. Our dogs really needed to get outside and in all honesty, we did too.

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There’s something strange about being held captive in your home and it makes a person feel grateful when they can finally just walk freely outside.

I’m an introvert and love being at home, but during the storm, it felt different because it was not my choice. I think a lot of people in my area felt this way, because as we walked, we began to see more and more neighbors doing the same.

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I wasn’t expecting it, but each time I saw a familiar face, I felt a little relief that they were okay. I didn’t realize that I had so much concern for my fellow neighbors, and each person I saw made me feel a little more back to normal. Person by person, we were all coming back together to join as a community and that made me to feel more balanced in myself.    

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It took my first hurricane to appreciate where I live and to feel like a part of something here. 

Matthew may have knocked down some trees and tried to destroy my home and my neighborhood, but he gave me a new understanding of community and what it means to me.

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Tracy Bryan is an award-winning Indie author. She writes whimsical books for kids ages 4-12. She likes to tackle important and diverse topics that affect kids and their families.

Tracy just released her debut fiction picture book called Put Away Your Phone! with illustrator David Barrow. They are currently working on their next book together called Too Many Things! due to be out early 2017!

 

Excessive Baggage & The Art of Traveling Light

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I just got home from a trip to Europe.

I love to travel and I feel grateful to have had the opportunity to explore many exciting and unique destinations. Most of the places I’ve experienced have been journeys well worth taken.

What I don’t enjoy about travel is the just before I go and the returning home parts. 

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I’m not sure why it’s so difficult for me at these times, before and towards the end of travel. I genuinely love and get excited about trying new adventures, but I have anxiety about leaving home.

I suppose like most people, my home is my comfort zone. It’s my place to just be. Sure, there are some things that I have to do around my house, like laundry and cleaning, but for the most part, I love being in my home.2014-08-24-20-34-44

Therefore, before I travel, I have to physically and mentally prepare myself for being away from home. I used to over pack. I would throw in excess clothes, just in case.

Who knows why I feared not having enough or going without, but I just felt better knowing that I was overly prepared for anything. After being on many trips, I’ve grown to realize that the more stuff I pack, the more stuff I have to lug around with me.

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Plus, I started noticing that a lot of the clothes and other things that I was packing , weren’t even getting worn or used while I was away. This seemed wasteful somehow and I began to look at the real reason that I felt the need to drag excess baggage with me while I was away from home.  

2016-09-14-10-53-28-1-2Looking back, I believe that I was looking for comfort in the things that I packed in order to ease my homesickness. This seems like such a dramatic word to describe my state of mind that I had while away. But, aside from the hardcore nomads, I truly believe that everyone suffers from a little homesickness when they are away from their home. I do. Every single time I’m away.

A home is a safe environment that we’ve created and usually contains familiar things, memories, and people (and animals) that keep us balanced and secure. Our home, to a certain extent, is not only our place of residence, but it is in part our identity. It’s not just where we come from, but it’s also who we are because it’s where we live. Why would we want to leave it?

To grow. At least that’s my goal when I travel. And to gather new experiences from new people and places.

2015-07-06-13-39-05-1Too easy would it be for me to stay nestled safely in my home. I really could do this. There are enough people, pets, objects of comfort and familiarity in my home to keep me quite content for a very long time. I may need to have supplies shipped in of modern day necessities and conveniences, but I could stay home and be happy for the rest of my life. How boring and stagnant would I be?

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So, instead, I battle through my anxieties and pack a smallish bag of whatever is absolutely needed on my travels to somewhere new and hopefully exciting.

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While I’m away, I usually have the best time. I’m just one of those annoyingly optimistic people that can find interest, meaning, and happiness in the most boring, uncomfortable or awkward of situations. I feel there must be a reason for the discomfort, awkwardness, and boredom I’m feeling and I use these times to grow and learn what I need to.

Then I get to bring home the lessons that I’ve learned from new places, people, and situations I’ve experienced. Kind of like life souvenirs.

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This is why I need to have extra space in my bag. Traveling home for me isn’t just a quick flight and unpack. Before I get home, I need to prepare once again. In order to face my return home, I have to gather strength and hope that I can find a space in my home for my new baggage.

This takes a lot of breathing and a lot of patience from my husband. 

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The most difficult part of travel for me is not the new places or faces or adventures. The ‘returning home’ moment is the toughest. Returning home is like finding new pieces that fit into the puzzle. Just when I thought I had it all figured out, I have to discover new ways to fit pieces that make it all feel complete.

I just finished unpacking from my trip to Europe. After a few days to regroup back home, I have to say, my new souvenirs seem to go really well with the place.

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2016-09-18-22-42-05Tracy Bryan is an award-winning Indie author. She writes whimsical books for kids ages 4-12. She likes to tackle important and diverse topics that affect kids and their families.

Tracy just released her debut fiction picture book called Put Away Your Phone! with illustrator David Barrow. They are currently working on their next book together called Too Many Things! due to be out early 2017!

 

 

Sensitive…and I know it!

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I have to confess, I’m kind of an introvert. It’s not that I don’t like people. I really do. I love people. They fascinate me and I’m constantly intrigued by human behavior. But, being around other people for long periods of time really drains me.

I’m a highly sensitive person. This is a real “thing”. I’m not just overly sensitive or too touchy-feely, I am a Highly Sensitive Person or HSP. According to Scientist Elaine Aron’s research, this is a real innate trait that is found in 15-20% of the human population. The trait’s scientific term is called Sensory-Processing Sensitivity or SPS.

Picture2 People like me need to spend a great deal of time away from others in order to “recharge our batteries.” Most HSPs are prone to being extremely hyper-sensitive to the people, places, and situations that we interact with. Basically, everything and everyone that we come in contact with has a huge effect on our feelings and behavior. We can be so in tune with other people’s feelings, behavior, and needs, that we tend to lose sight of our own.

Picture2You might say that most people have these same reactions when it comes to how they process their surroundings, and that’s somewhat true. However, HSPs need that much more time away to regroup than most. We need to physically separate ourselves from others so we can mentally detach too.

Everyone does need some solitude, especially in our overly complicated and incredibly digitally connected world. I would recommend that the average person should seek alone time at least an hour a day so they can decompress from their responsibilities and all the stimulation in their life. For HSPs, like me, we need a lot of extra downtime and if we don’t get it, we tend to have a meltdown. 

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If most HSPs struggle with feelings of being drained by other people, they most likely also suffer from additional feelings of guilt and obligation because of this. When we get overwhelmed by large groups of people and choose not to be around them, it can be interpreted the wrong way by others and this can be a difficult situation for everyone to deal with.

Being honest about my feelings to others seems to work best for me and it’s crucially important for me to establish healthy boundaries with other people. It wasn’t until later in life that I learned how to cultivate boundaries, though.

dreamstime_xl_33042825As a child and for a lot of my adulthood I felt guilty and obligated when it came to my personal relationships. I used to spend hours worrying if I was spending enough time with friends and if not, I dwelled on how they would feel about this. Unconsciously, it was important to me that their needs were met first in the relationship and I neglected to pay attention to what I needed from them.

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Now I can see that this isn’t so healthy and eventually it led me to feel burdened and somewhat resentful of the people in my relationships. I reacted to this by distancing myself immediately and waiting it out until I felt more comfortable. Unfortunately, usually by the time I was ready to face the relationship again, the other person was too annoyed, offended or bored by my unexplained distancing.

So, how did I learn to set boundaries?

By listening to my needs.

This seems like it would be an easy task, but actually, in our culture, we are raised to believe that thinking of ourselves first is selfish. But there’s a difference between being selfish and being self-nurturing. It is absolutely necessary for someone who is constantly thinking of other’s needs first and who is hyper-focused on other’s feelings and reactions, to remember to put oneself first sometimes too. In fact, it’s a way of protecting ourselves from future conflict and anxiety.

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Setting boundaries is a way to listen to your needs. It’s really an essential tool for all people to learn, especially if you are a HSP. When you get that gut feeling that you are uncomfortable about a person, place or situation…listen to what you need. Question yourself: How do I feel about this? Why am I uncomfortable? What do I need to say or do to feel better? If it takes a few deep breaths and some quiet time away from these triggers…take the breaths, take the time. Then regroup, and face it again.

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I’m an introvert. I’m proud of the fact that I can get in touch with my needs when I need to. I’m not ashamed that I need time away from other people. Large amounts of time. And when I can’t get this, I set boundaries so that I feel safe and my feelings are balanced around other people. I remember not to feel like I have to meet other people’s needs first all the time and instead I try to notice and listen to what I need too.

I’m sensitive…I know it, I accept it…

and I like it.

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To learn more about Sensory-Processing Sensitivity and HSP visit the following links:

http://hsperson.com     

http://www.sensitiveperson.com/article.htm

http://www.lifeworkshelp.com/HSP-Newsletter/sensory-processing-sensitivity-what-it-is-what-it-isnt/

http://phys.org/news/2010-04-sensitive-people-brains-differently.html

http://highlysensitiveperson.net/sensory-processing-disorder/

Sensitive the movie is now available to rent or buy! Follow this link to find out more.

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Picture9Tracy Bryan is an award-winning Indie author. She writes whimsical books for kids ages 4-12.

 Tracy just released her debut fiction picture book called Put Away Your Phone! She also likes to tackle important and diverse topics that affect kids and their families.

Check out Tracy’s non-fiction book called Feeling Sensitive! for kids aged 7-9 about HSP http://tracybryan.com/awesome-diverse-book-series-catalogue/ and another post from her blog about this trait http://tracybryan.com/blog/why-so-sensitive-written-by-tracy-bryan/.

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Resources:

http://hsperson.com/research/

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/high-octane-women/201201/6-reasons-you-should-spend-more-time-alone

http://tinybuddha.com/blog/how-to-set-healthy-boundaries-3-crucial-first-steps/

http://psychcentral.com/lib/10-way-to-build-and-preserve-better-boundaries/

http://www.heysigmund.com/mindfully-self-ish/

http://introvertdear.com/2016/02/01/things-a-highly-sensitive-person-needs/

 

YOU CAN be the CHANGE in THE WORLD

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It’s been a crazy world lately, huh? It’s hard not to feel something about all the terrifying happenings around the globe. Personally, I’m trying so hard not to be too affected by current events, but when these occur close to home, I cant help but feel like I need to DO something about it.

Sometimes just breathing through our worries, staying calm and keeping close to our loved ones is the only action we can do.shutterstock_225298123

The important thing to remember is that we are loved and have people in our lives that we can love too. Spreading this love and kindness to our extended family, friends, to the people in our community and throughout the world is also helpful.

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It feels good to show love, compassion and kindness to other people, doesn’t it? At times like this everyone needs to feel loved. In a small way, this changes the bad things in the world and that is a really big thing! 

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One very important thing YOU can also do when awful events happen around you and in your world is to make sure to talk about your feelings.

How do YOU feel about all this crazy stuff going on in the world?

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If you’re having a difficult time with all the violence in the news lately, here are some tools* to help you deal with the feelings you’re having:

Talk it out and share your feelings with others.

You may be feeling different emotions at different times. Sadness. Anger. Fear. Confusion. Even numbness — not feeling anything at all. These feelings are normal reactions to a tragedy or scary event. Don’t be afraid to express how you feel and listen to others as they share their feelings with you. Your parents, friends, teachers, and others can help you and help them.shutterstock_192828905

Take care of yourself.

Losing sleep, not eating, and worrying too much can make you sick. As much as possible, try to get enough sleep, eat right, exercise, and keep a normal routine. It may be hard to do, but it can keep you healthy and better able to handle a tough time.

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Take a TV break.

Although it’s natural to want to know what’s happening, don’t spend hours glued to the television set. Taking a break from watching what’s going on in the world is OK. Read, play board games or go outside.

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Get creative and express yourself.

Drawing pictures and writing letters can help you feel better. Maybe you’d like to send a letter or homemade card to rescue workers, doctors, and others who cared for people who were hurt. You also can start a journal and record your thoughts and feelings. You can share this with others or keep it to yourself.

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Be respectful of others.

You may have heard certain countries, religions, or political causes blamed for terrorism and other scary events in the world. But it’s important to remember that very few people believe in killing and hurting innocent people to make their point. Don’t give in to prejudice by blaming a whole group or by disliking people just because of the country where they were born, the faith they practice, the way they dress, the color of their skin or for who they love.

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Help out and be with others.

In times of tragedy, people find comfort in being together and supporting each other. Find ways to show you care and that the community is sticking together. Hold a friend’s hand or give someone a hug. It will make you both feel a little better.

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Above all…just know that YOU ARE LOVED and try to be the best and most awesomest you that you can be!

* Adapted from: D’Arcy Lyness, PhD

2015-07-06 13.39.04Hi, I’m Tracy Bryan… I’m a self-published author for kids aged 4-12. I write whimsical picture books about emotions, self-esteem, values, and mindfulness. I also like to write about social issues and other important topics that affect kids and their families. If there is something that you would like to know more about and you wish there was a book about it, email at the address below.

If you want to learn more about me, read the blog all about me below this one. There’s pictures too! You can visit my website by clicking on any heading at the menu above. This will redirect you to tracybryan.com. You can also email me at tracy@tracybryan.com. Hope to hear from you and look forward to blogging and reading with you!

be the CHANGE in THE WORLD

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It’s been a crazy world lately, huh? It’s hard not to feel something about all the terrifying happenings around the globe. Personally, I’m trying so hard not to be too affected by current events, but when these occur close to home, it provokes me to want to react to them.

 

 I wonder how the kids of the world feel?

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My kids are young adults, but I can see that they are just as scared as I am. Scared of what? Racism, Hate, Violence…the future. Scared of the future of the world globally and the future as it will be in our own communities and homes. How the world will be in the future is far more unpredictable to imagine than it ever was.

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Obviously, so many violent occurrences in a row spark a fear in all humans that makes us feel threatened and filled with less hope for the future of mankind. I can only imagine how a child is reacting to all this world chaos.

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My family deals with each new crazy event by discussing what has happened and then we share our feelings about it. Together, we form an empathetic resistance to the chaos. At the same time, this sharing strengthens our love and support for one another. We still have fear, but at least we never feel like we have to face it alone.

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Scary worldwide events have been happening since the beginning of mankind. Unfortunately, it’s human to have war, violence, and death in the world. Also, as much as we care to admit it, racism and hate do still exist everywhere. It’s easy to build up a tolerance to something that occurs routinely, but I think it’s essential to let ourselves feel it instead of denying what is really going on or by hiding from it. This is happening to real people like you and me and it’s important to never forget that. It may be a family member, friend or neighbor affected by these terrifying events. It could be any of us.

 

 

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All of us are affected by terrifying world events.

As a child, I remember hearing about similar social issues in the news, among the adult conversations, and in school. Always I could come home and be reassured that I was safe. I tried to create this same place for my children and I hope they will for theirs.

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What about the kids that don’t have a safe haven?

I like to think that when an adult notices a child that seems upset, discouraged, or is having a difficult time with current events, that this adult will find help for the child. No one should be left struggling when they are confused about all these crazy happenings, especially a child. Kids deserve and need age appropriate honesty and reassurance about what is going on around them, particularly if they are asking questions.  

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It can be as simple as leading by example and displaying common values like compassion, empathy and kindness. Kids also need to be empowered with certain basic tools in order to overcome all the craziness in our world.

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Above all, contemporary kids need to know that they are loved. Every child needs to know that there is someone or some group of someones out there that love them and whom they can love back. They need to know that these people care about how they feel, will protect and keep them safe and will inspire them to be the change they want to see in the world.

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2015-07-06 13.39.04Tracy Bryan is a self-published author for kids aged 4-12. She writes whimsical picture books about coping skills, mental health and mindfulness. 

Tracy lives in Central Florida with her family and two dogs Jack and Rusty! To contact or learn more about Tracy, please email her at tracy@tracybryan.com

 

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If you know a child that is having a difficult time with contemporary violence in the news, here are some tools to help them deal with their feelings:

  • Talk it out and share your feelings with others. You may be feeling different emotions at different times. Sadness. Anger. Fear. Confusion. Even numbness — not feeling anything at all. These feelings are normal reactions to a tragedy or scary event. Don’t be afraid to express how you feel and listen to others as they share their feelings with you. Your parents, friends, teachers, and others can help you and help them.
  • Take care of yourself. Losing sleep, not eating, and worrying too much can make you sick. As much as possible, try to get enough sleep, eat right, exercise, and keep a normal routine. It may be hard to do, but it can keep you healthy and better able to handle a tough time.
  • Take a TV break. Although it’s natural to want to know what’s happening, don’t spend hours glued to the television set. Taking a break from watching what’s going on in the world is OK. Read, play board games or go outside.
  • Get creative and express yourself. Drawing pictures and writing letters can help you feel better. Maybe you’d like to send a letter or homemade card to rescue workers, doctors, and others who cared for people who were hurt. You also can start a journal and record your thoughts and feelings. You can share this with others or keep it to yourself.
  • Be respectful of others. You may have heard certain countries, religions, or political causes blamed for terrorism and other scary events in the world. But it’s important to remember that very few people believe in killing and hurting innocent people to make their point. Don’t give in to prejudice by blaming a whole group or by disliking people just because of the country where they were born, the faith they practice, the way they dress, the color of their skin or for who they love.
  • Help out and be with others. In times of tragedy, people find comfort in being together and supporting each other. Find ways to show you care and that the community is sticking together. Hold a friend’s hand or give someone a hug. It will make you both feel a little better.

Adapted from: D’Arcy Lyness, PhD

 

Book Tour…Day Seven

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Welcome Back to Day Seven of

my Book Tour for

Put Away Your Phone!

 

Today we’ll be visiting Laura Jensen-Kimball at…

wackystackbooks.com

logo-wackystackbooks

You get to see the very first review for Put Away Your Phone! My wonderful Facebook friend and fellow children’s author, Laura Jensen Kimball, has offered to do a review for me. Thanks Laura!

shutterstock_103611593Click on the link above to have a peek. Once there, please click on the next link there, to take you to the next stop on the tour and an update about what’s scheduled for the next day!

(If you get lost along the way-it happens-you can always come back to…yup, you guessed it…my blog page!)

For Kids Eyes Only…dreamstime_xl_48637133

(and the kids at heart)

Hey Everyone! In case you hadn’t heard…Each day I’m going to have a trivia question for you to answer. If your a child, they may be kind of tricky, so have an adult help you. Go ahead and search the internet for the answer if you need to. When you’re done researching, submit your answer in the comments section below.

Today’s (Final) Trivia Question:Pg11

What does Emma say to grown-ups who are always on their smartphones?

Yesterday’s trivia question answer to:

Name four (positive or negative) emotions that people have because of their smartphone?

*When it comes to the emotions that people experience as a result of having a smartphone, “productive” and “happy” lead the way — 79% …But  57% of smartphone owners reported feeling “distracted” thanks to their phone, and 36% reported that their phone made them feel “frustrated.” Any answers similar to these emotions are correct!

Coming tomorrow:shutterstock_69053353

It’s the final day of my book tour tomorrow!!! We’ll be staying right here for the final trivia answer and…the CONTEST WINNERS & PRIZES will be announced!  

See you tomorrow!

*pewinternet.org

Book Tour…Day Six

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Welcome Back to Day Six of

my Book Tour for

Put Away Your Phone!

Today has us staying here again-yay, lucky us! 

Also, (drumroll please) I’m finally revealing my Teacher’s Guide.

(This link takes you to another page on my site. In case you’ve forgotten, today I’m offering a one day only FREE copy of the guide! All you have to do is simply subscribe to my mailing list and then I can gift it to you)

                       View the TEACHER’S GUIDE

shutterstock_103611593Click on the link above to have a peek. And… (you know the drill) Once there, please click on the next link there, to take you to the next stop on the tour. See below for an update about what’s scheduled for tomorrow!

(If you get lost along the way-it happens-you can always come back to my blog page!)

 

*If you haven’t already, don’t forget to check out my custom downloadable handouts for Put Away Your Phone! These are also included in Chapter Nine of the Teacher’s Guide. 

(Note to teachers: In honor of all the hard work you do for our nation’s kids, this guide will be offered complimentary to you for an extended time-simply by emailing me (tracy@tracybryan.com) and requesting your copy to accompany your book!

 

 

 

For Kids Eyes Only…dreamstime_xl_48637133

(and kids at heart)

Hey Everyone! In case you hadn’t heard…Each day I’m going to have a trivia question for you to answer. If your a child, they may be kind of tricky, so have an adult help you. Go ahead and search the internet for the answer if you need to. When you’re done researching, submit your answer in the comments section below.

Today’s Trivia Question: 

Name four (positive or negative) emotions that people have because of their smartphone?

Submit your answer below as a comment on today’s blog. Your name will be put in a hat to be drawn for 5 prizes to give away at the end of the tour. Check back in tomorrow for the final answer and a list of all winners and prizes!

Yesterday’s trivia question answer to:

How often does the average smartphone user check their phone?

The average smartphone user checks their phone

110 times a day!*shutterstock_230613061

Yikes, that’s a lot! 

No wonder Emma gets so annoyed with grown-ups!

Coming tomorrow:

On Day 7 of my Book Tour, we’re stopping at wackystackbooks to see my friend Laura Jensen-Kimball and a very first review she did for Put Away Your Phone!

See ya tomorrow!

 

 

*explorefacts.net

Book Tour…Day Five

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shutterstock_101697520Welcome Back to Day Five of

my Book Tour for

Put Away Your Phone!

Today we’ll be visiting the husband and wife team Jon Bard and Laura Backes at writeforkids

wfk

In this guest blog, I describe the process I went through in finding and working with my awesome illustrator David Barrow. Make sure not to miss this one because I give handy tips for authors who are considering working with an illustrator. Also, find some very useful links to many essential resources for the author and illustrator! 

shutterstock_103611593Click on the link above to have a peek. Once there, please click on the next link there, to take you to the next stop on the tour and an update about what’s scheduled for the next day!

(If you get lost along the way-it happens-you can always come back to my blog page!)

For Kids Eyes Only…dreamstime_xl_48637133

(and kids at heart)

Hey Everyone! In case you hadn’t heard…Each day I’m going to have a trivia question for you to answer. If your a child, they may be kind of tricky, so have an adult help you. Go ahead and search the internet for the answer if you need to. When you’re done researching, submit your answer in the comments section below.

Today’s Trivia Question:shutterstock_157691252

How often does the average smartphone user check their phone?

Submit your answer below as a comment on today’s blog. Your name will be put in a hat to be drawn for 5 prizes to give away at the end of the tour. Check back in tomorrow for the answer!

Yesterday’s trivia question answer to:

Name four “apps” that you can download on a smartphone.

1. Facebook
2. Instagram
3. Kindle
4. Google Maps
*These are just the ones that I came up with. If you named four too, you did awesome!

Coming tomorrow:shutterstock_69053353

On Day 6 of my Book Tour, we’ll be staying right here because I’m finally having my big “reveal” for the Put Away Your Phone! Teacher’s Guide!

Plus, if you subscribe to my mailing list & monthly “this n that” newsletter, you receive a copy FREE!

See ya tomorrow…

Book Tour…Day Four

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shutterstock_101697520Welcome Back to Day Four of

my Book Tour for

Put Away Your Phone!

Today we’ll be making two stops!

First, we’ll be stopping at a different page on my site

On this stop, read a post I wrote about technology, kid’s screen use and the educational system.

Second, stop by this page where there are fun worksheets that you can download. Technically these are offered in my Teacher’s Guide (which I’ll be releasing on Day 6) but you get a first peek at these downloadable worksheets and games that I’ve made! Link to sheets

shutterstock_103611593Click on the link(s) above to have a peek. Once there, please click on the next link there, to take you to the next stop on the tour and an update about what’s scheduled for the next day!

(If you get lost along the way-it happens-you can always come back to my site and look for my book tour in the Put Away Your Phone! menu heading!)

For Kids Eyes Only…dreamstime_xl_48637133

Hey Everyone! In case you hadn’t heard…Each day I’m going to have a trivia question for you to answer. They may be kind of tricky, so have an adult help you. Go ahead and search the internet for the answer if you need to. When you’re done researching, submit your answer in the comments section below.

Today’s Trivia Question:shutterstock_295081580

Name four “apps” that you can download on a smartphone.

Submit your answer below as a comment on today’s blog. Your name will be put in a hat to be drawn for 5 prizes to give away at the end of the tour. Check back in tomorrow for the answer!

Yesterday’s trivia question answer to:

What are three activities that people use their smartphone for? (other than phone calls)

1. internet
2. camera
3. game
Coming tomorrow:shutterstock_69053353

On Day 5 of my Book Tour, we’ll be popping over to writeforkids.org, with husband and wife team Jon Bard and Laura Backes, where I’m guest blogging about my awesome illustrator David Barrow! Don’t want to miss this one! (OR ANY OF THEM!)

See ya tomorrow…