Friends and teachers - These two groups can be your biggest cheerleaders and sources of support. The preschool community offers a base of families with whom you can form lasting bonds and friendships. You are guaranteed a group of people that have similar aged children and are going through the same stages, frustrations and joys that you are. Reach out to each other, have playdates, grab a quick coffee while the kids are in school and chat. Often knowing that others are walking the same path as you and having another person to lean on, bounce ideas off and vent to makes all the difference. Another wonderful resource are your children's teachers. As I mentioned at orientation the other day, between the five of us, we are raising 16 children and have taught preschool for a total of 38 years! In addition to working with your children, we are here for you too! We are happy to answer your questions, offer our suggestions, brainstorm an idea or just provide a friendly ear. We are here to help and are more than willing to share our own experiences and learnings on the fun filled world of raising children!
Local resource centers and activities - We are so very fortunate to have two family resource centers and a wealth of activities available for young children nearby. In addition to the Parent Resource Center in Corning and the Horseheads Family Resource Center, there are many music classes, dance classes, art classes, gymnastics, sports and library story hours for your children to participate in.
Online resources - What did we do before Pinterest, Facebook, Yahoo and bloggers? All of these things are quick, easy and free ways to connect and get information on parenting.
Books and magazines - Of course you can still go old school with books and magazines. Consider a subscription to a magazine like Parents or head to the local library and check out some parenting books. Often an idea or quick article can provide you with the information and clarity you were looking for.
Family - I was never more thankful for my family than when I first had children. Near or far, grandparents, aunts, uncles, brothers, sisters and spouses can provide a safe and loving environment for you and your children. Take advantage of the wisdom, guidance and love and support that your family has to offer.
Remember, we are all in this together and are here for you every step of the way!