Bedtime Stories :: Annie Haas

Annie Haas singer/songwriter, artist, and photographer

Annie Haas

Annie Haas is a mother of 3, singer, artist and all around inspiring mom. Here she shares her bedtime routine, which is very much in the spirit of Dr. Sears Attachment Parenting philosophy. When you’re a parent, getting your child to sleep is important, and there are myriad ways to achieve this. So, while Annie’s family sleep routine has me looking for some lavender rub, remember every family’s style is based on their personal values and philosophies. There isn’t one right time or way to get your baby to sleep. You can visit Annie on Instagram for more information about her art, parenting and Waldorf home.

What ages are your children?

My children are very spread out! They are 15, 8, and 4.

How do you help them slow down towards evening?

My teen reads before bed, and I read and sing to my younger two. Sometimes they have a bath first but not every night. I use a lavender rub on their chest or chamomile tea especially if they need to calm down but sometimes they are so tired they don’t need it!

Read More

Interview with Lou Harvey-Zahra :: Author and Positive Parenting Expert

Lou is a mother and the author of Happy Child, Happy Home: Conscious Parenting and Creative Discipline and Creative Discipline, Connected Family: Transforming Tears, Tantrums and Troubles While Staying Close to Your Children.27650_ap

Her books have wonderful tips for connecting with your children and she empowers parents to create an environment of magic and wonder and gives you tools for disciplining without using punishments and rewards. Lou trained as a special needs teacher, worked teaching autistic children, is a trained Waldorf teacher and ran playgroups for 12 years. She travels and gives talks and workshops in Europe and Australia and is known for being a common sense educator who presents in a heartfelt way, her motto is “never to harm, only to help, I just inspire.“

She believes the most important parts of parenting take two minutes, one of the things she said that really resonated with me was “childhood is a sacred special time and children don’t know time, they don’t know minutes or days of the week and rhythms make them feel safe, rhythms hold families together.”

I know you’re a Waldorf teacher, but what inspired you to write a book about discipline and happy households?

I write to give parents new ideas to create happy homes. I know parenting isn’t easy and parents don’t have ideas unless they watch somebody, read a book or attend a workshop or learn from their own parents. I do it for children because childhood is an important stage of life and I’m passionate about childhood, I think it’s a special and unique phase. I want to give parents ways to connect with their children, so their children can have a childhood of magic and wonder. When you use creative discipline, both the children and the parents can be happy.

Lou Harvey-Zahra

Did you have any deep held beliefs about discipline you had to let go of during your training as a Waldorf teacher?

I didn’t have any deeply held ideas. I was very lucky because my parents didn’t know anything about creative discipline, but they did use creative ways. So I was never hit or given time out or grounded. When I was doing my Waldorf teacher training, I learned it’s not what you teach, it’s who you are as a person that has the most profound effect on a child. Running playgroups and having children made me more conscious about what works and what doesn’t work. My ideas have evolved based on what works without using rewards and punishments, what works without making them feel really bad. It doesn’t mean letting them get away with things. Discipline means to teach, not to punish. Teach them to self-regulate their behavior. If you punish they just learn not to get caught.

Would you say your books are for every parent or for parents that already have knowledge of Waldorf schools, Rudolf Steiner and his teachings?

Definitely every parent, a lot of people say I have a common sense parenting or heartfelt parenting approach, it’s definitely for everybody.

Read More

Bonding Tips for Babies and Toddlers

Hiking

The birth of a child is one of the most amazing and intense moments to experience and be a witness to.  As a parent and birth professional I feel privileged to have experienced the former and the latter.

When we bond with our babies and children, we create a trust that sustains them and us through those inevitable all-nighters that often happen to us parents.  It also gives us the confidence to parent using our own judgment when we’re receiving varying advice from well meaning friends and family.

Read More