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Support Systems for Parents Are Important!

Some people’s friends all have kids at the same time. Is there something in the water? Who knows – but it provides a built-in parent network.

For others though, having a child immediately segregates them from their peer group and that can be really tough - all this new responsibility and a feeling of total isolation.

There are many support groups for new parents which help to bring parents together. Parents don’t have to go it alone. Some choose to. But, taking one day at a time and knowing that options exist can make it easier.

We all know how helpful it can be to have a “safe-person” or group of people to talk to when things aren’t going according to plan.

Those same people are great to have around when you want to talk about the great report card your child received or the funny things your young-comedian-in-training did today.

Your safe-person may be your mom, your sister, your spouse or someone else in your life. This person doesn’t judge you and you can feel free to speak what’s on your mind.

We learn a great deal about ourselves from our children – good and bad. When we speak about our feelings and concerns, it takes them out of our head where they can spiral repeatedly and enables us to look at them for what they are and move past them or take action.

Choose The Right Network For You

As valuable as these friends are, sometimes these networks can work against us. What networks are helpful and what aren’t? Our needs and situations change over time. If you joined the baby group and it was good for a while that’s great. Now however, everyone has had second and third children and the once peaceful group is chaos. If it is more of a struggle than a help, it may be time to make a change. Model for your child that you can’t do it all and nor should they.

This premise extends to classes and activities for our children. If you feel that you “should” go to music class but it takes place during your child’s nap time and he’s sleeping through half of the class– why are you there? He could be napping and you could too. Your child won’t miss the class and nor will you.

Another factor in group gatherings is the parenting issues that arise. In a group of more than 2 families, there is a good chance that various parenting styles will exist. This presents a challenge when behaviour gets out of hand which it invariably will.

If the group is important to everyone involved, it will take honesty and understanding for everyone to develop a set of rules regarding safety and respect. If everyone disciplines their own children things can work well with a few tips:

  1. Come to the group with a non-judgemental perspective. You don’t have to agree with the parenting strategies used by others, but you can accept them for their children.
  2. When another child’s misbehaviour begins to affect your child, approach the situation with honesty. Talk about your feelings:
    “I’m uncomfortable when I see my child being hit. I feel the need to keep Suzy with me until things are under control again.”
    Or teach your child other strategies:
    “Suzy, please use your words to ask Jane to stop hitting you. I’m sure she will be a good friend and listen to you.”
  3.  Have realistic expectations for the children’s abilities when you are together. Children under 3 will need regular supervision as they are just learning how to relate to others. Most 2-year olds are developmentally unable to share or are just learning. Set them up for success by watching and modeling rather than leaving them to figure it out for themselves.

Develop A Caregiver Network

Another important form of support is the caregiver network that you establish for your family. Time away from our children can help us to rejuvenate, both mentally and physically.

It also encourages them to develop a greater sense of independence.  Minimize the guilt you may feel about leaving your child. If you do it, develop a routine so that your children feel more comfortable.

If you start when your child is young, it’s routine and the child is less likely to question it. If you don’t feel comfortable leaving your child, that’s ok too. Wait until Dad gets home for some free time.

Remember, as valuable as support groups are, you don’t always have to be networking with your child. Set your boundaries to fit you and your family right now. As your family changes, your choices will change as well. Be wise and kind in the choices you make for yourself. Your children are watching to see how you handle situations – what a great opportunity to teach caring and consideration for all of the members of your family.

From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parent Power

Halloween Hair Ideas

A special hairstyle for Halloween can really take your child’s costume to the next level. Beaners Fun Cuts For Kids has gathered some of our favourite ideas from Pinterest to inspire you!

Queen Poppy, Trolls


Princess Jasmine, Aladdin




Queen Elsa, Frozen

Cat Ears


Rey, Star Wars


New Rainbow Extensions Are Here!


Add some colour, without the commitment.

New rainbow colour hair extensions with graduated colour variations are all the rage.

Prices and availability vary by location. Call for availability and book your appointment today.

The Right Tools

If you need good quality colour spray or kid-friendly styling products that will hold up for trick or treating, visit any Beaners Fun Cuts For Kids location. And if you need help with more complicated hair styles, like braids, you can always book us for a styling appointment.

For more ideas and instructions, visit our Halloween Pinterest board here.

Halloween Tricks to Make Family Life a Little Less Scary

We often get questions from our clients. Here are three gremlins that have been haunting these families, along with tricks to make things more of a treat.

"Our seven-year-old son is a wimp and it is starting to drive me crazy! Everything is a drama.  Now with Halloween coming up, he doesn’t want to wear and costume and claims that Halloween is scary and doesn’t want to go trick or treating.  The thing is, when we force him to do stuff and go places, he always ends up having fun.  So, how do we skip the drama and enjoy Halloween this year?"

Tell him how you are feeling, acknowledge his feelings and make a plan.  Sometimes children have learned various ways of getting our attention – even negative attention.  It sounds like your son has learned to get your attention through drama – and if you keep “letting it drive you crazy” he will keep doing it. 

Specifically for the Halloween situation, ask him ONCE if he wants to wear a costume and go trick or treating, offer help and guidance in getting the costume ready of his choice and if he says no – tell him that is fine but follow through – no costume and no trick or treating. 

We need to let our children learn from their choices and natural consequences.  Your actions are telling him very strongly that he can make choices but there will be consequences sometimes.  So...when he then wants to go trick or treating you don’t cave – and remind yourself – it will not affect his life  or your life in a year.

"Here we go again – Halloween!  As if our kids don’t get enough junk, now there are classroom parties, community parties and the actual night.  Our son is a sugar freak and is obsessed with candy – any kind.  Any suggestions on how we might deal with the inevitable fights over junk that are about to happen the day after Halloween?"

You are right, Halloween does come every year and yes, there is candy associated with it and probably always will be.  Therefore, instead of fighting about it each year, come up with a plan.  NOW is the time to be talking about it, not right after a party or the night of Halloween when he gets home. 

Decide what you think is a reasonable amount for him to be eating – this is a family decision, with the child.  Some families will allow something every day, others, every other day, some, once a week.  You could also talk about how much candy is okay to keep and what you are going to do with the rest – freeze it, take it to a shelter, etc.

"Our daughter wants to go out trick or treating with her friends this year and no parents.  She is in grade five which seems a little young to me.  Your thoughts???"

On a positive note, there is safety in numbers.  Questions to ask – are the other parents in agreement (call them), when are they going, and when will they be home, where are they going.  Can you have a meeting spot to check in halfway through?  Can they come home for a candy drop off mid-evening?  What is their plan if something unexpected happens? 

Run through different scenarios.  When our children approach us with different opportunities for them to be independent – as parents we need to consider them versus shutting our kids down.  Better that we know what they are doing, where and with whom, then them sneaking around and lying.

From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parenting Power

Talking to Coaches and Teachers

The saying tells us, “It takes a village to raise a child.”

Adults volunteering to work with our kids bring so much; different points of view, valuable skill sets and expertise. With kids in younger grades, it can be helpful to have an initial meeting with the teacher/coach while things are positive: we really are all working toward the same goals.
During that first meeting, it's important to find out the best method of communication (email, texts, phone messages, agenda) as well as the best time for this to happen. It can be really tough for a teacher or coach to have parents wanting to ask questions and share information at drop-off or pick-up; many families + confidentiality rules = communication disaster.
From that point on, communication may not happen frequently, and if everything is working well, that's just fine. Sometimes, though, there is a misunderstanding or a misbehaviour and we end up have having to connect with the teacher or coach when we wish we didn’t have to. For those times, here are some tools to use:
24 Hour Rule

In the heat of the moment, whatever has gone wrong can feel incredibly scary and overwhelming. Take time to breathe and calm down (possibly for 24 hours) so that your communication about the event can be productive. It is important for our child to feel heard and it is important for us, as parents, to realise that a child’s version of the situation is only one version. Some script that can be helpful is,

“We wanted to let you know that Johnny told us ____. We would love to get clear on how you think things happened and how we can help everyone to feel better about the situation.”
Document what was discussed and the resulting tasks. When you do meet with the teacher/coach, make a plan for follow up: when, and how. Keep communication consistent (for example, every Friday until things are running smoothly).
Be respectful of working hours.

If you are emailing a teacher/coach at 10pm, understand that she may not get back to you until the next work day. If you are curious, ask about turnaround time during your meeting, "When can I expect to hear back from you on this?"

In all relationships, communication is the key.

Creating a plan for clear and consistent communication with teachers and coaches sets everyone up for success. In addition, it models the process for our children.
Once they are in the upper elementary grades, kids can begin to take responsibility for communicating with their teachers when they need help: emailing to say that they tried a number of math questions and didn't understand the concept; asking the coach to review a portion of the drill that they didn't understand.
When we encourage our children to do this, through modelling and allowing them to practice, we are teaching them how to advocate for themselves. By the time they are in high school, they will feel capable of getting the help that they need from teachers and coaches.

From Julie Freedman Smith & Gail Bell, Parenting Power


5 Simple Back-To-School Hair Tips To Make Mornings Easier

Back-to-school is just around the corner and so is the hustle of busy mornings and trying to tackle the tangles in your child’s care-free summer hair.

Looking for quick and easy ways to get your kids hair healthy and tidy, while saving time during busy mornings?

We consulted our kid’s hair experts to find the top hair care tips to solve common back-to-school hair challenges and make your morning routine run smoother.


All that fun in the sun, swimming and playing outdoors all summer long can be hard on your child’s hair with extra exposure to dust, sunscreen, and chlorine.

Most parents first reaction is to reach for a deep conditioner to try and repair the damage when the true issue is usually build-up in the hair. Chlorine and sunscreen slowly build up on hair leaving it looking dull and feeling rough to the touch.

A clarifying shampoo is designed to strip away build-up leaving hair soft and shiny, and SO much easier to manage and should be considered the first step to repairing hair. A swimmer’s shampoo, like Beaner’s 1 More Lap works great as a clarifying shampoo.


To keep hair build-up at bay, avoid 2 in 1 shampoo conditioners which only make the problem worse (think washing and waxing your car in one step, it’s not very effective!).

If bath times are a rush, ditch the 2 in 1 product and try a shampoo only, followed by a detangling leave-in conditioner, which will soften hair and speed up the combing process.

Lastly, a fresh haircut to trim off damaged ends will really improve the healthiness of your child’s hair.


If your child’s hair is always getting in the way while playing sports or trying to focus at school, try these quick and easy hairstyle tips:

For girls: Try a headband or headband braid to keep hair off the face and out of the eyes. Braiding can be done the night before to save time in the morning. If braiding is not your thing, you can also try a cloth, no-slip headband, clips or barrettes to keep hair off the face.

For boys: For hair that’s longer in the front, try switching to a shorter haircut style or use a hair gel to style the hair up and away from the forehand. You might be surprised to discover that your child’s ability to focus actually improves!


A great way to streamline your morning routine is to tackle detangling the night before using a leave-in detangler spray like Beaners 2 Knotty, and wide-tooth comb or Wet Brush (total life saver). The detangler spray will not only help with tangles, but also take care of fly-away hairs and static.

For children with longer hair, you may want to braid hair the night before to keep it from getting tangled over night. 

If your child is old enough, teaching them how to brush their own hair may also save you a bit of time in the morning.


Children with longer hair should brush starting at the tips of their hair and work their way up to the root to remove tangles more easily.


Curly hair presents some unique challenges. We suggest using a lightweight conditioner without wax for more defined silky curls without the crazy.

After bath time use a curl definer like Original Sprout Curl Calmer or Joico Spiker Gel, scrunching into damp hair to define those gorgeous curls.


Sweat and outdoor play can cause hair to fall forward into the eyes and cheeks and ruin your child’s hairdo.

For “spikier” styles, use a cornstarch-based hair gel or balm to stand up to sweat and the outdoor elements.

For longer styles, a leave-in conditioner and hairspray will help tame fly-aways and static to keep hair smooth.

For more kid's hair care tips, ask your Beaners Fun Cuts stylist for more information.

Kids Summer Hair Care Tips


Ah, summer. Glorious carefree days spent outside and playing in the water.

The last thing you want to worry about is tangled, messy hair.

Here are some tips to help make your summer smoother and your children’s hair low maintenance.

Swimmer’s Hair

Chlorine can be really hard on hair, leaving a gritty build-up, damaging ends and drying the hair out.  A few quick preventative steps can help keep your child’s hair healthy and manageable:

Pretreat The Hair

Hair is very porous and will soak up less chlorine if it’s pre-treated with a conditioner prior to swimming like Beaners Fun Cuts 2Knotty detangling conditioner spray. Apply a light layer of conditioner before you leave home, to allow enough time for the conditioner to soak into the hair.

Once you arrive at the pool, make sure your child throughly rinses their hair before entering the pool. By saturating the hair with clean tap water, the hair will retain much less chlorine. 

Cleanse Après Swim

Immediately after swimming, cleanse your child’s hair with shampoo and conditioner. If you frequently swim, use a clarifying shampoo like Beaners Fun Cuts 1MoreLap, swimmers shampoo which strips away build-up from chlorine, sunscreen and more. 

After using a clarifying shampoo, always use a deep conditioner like Beaner’s In 2 Deep to replenish the moisture.


Brushing hair after swimming can be a real challenge. To tame the tangles, use a detangling spray like 2Knotty to smooth out the hair and then use a wide-tooth comb or WetBrush.

Keep It Short

With all the swimming and activity, shorter hair can be easier to manage for the summer. And when it comes to beating the heat and staying cool, the shorter hair, the better!

A trendy “undercut” can remove bulky hair from underneath and help your child stay cool. Clipper art patterns can also be shaved into the undercut to really express your child’s personal style.


Image Credit: Pony Tail Undercut: Instagram @cosmobygabrielle

Tame Those Tresses

Keeping hair away from the face is also a great way to keep your kids cool and their hair looking great.


A headband or hair clip is just the trick to keep the hair out of the way.

Nourish And Protect

Moms are not immune to summer hair issues. If your hair needs a little extra TLC, try Original Sprout’s nutrient-rich Protective Protein Hair Mist.

It’s the ultimate hair repair product, repair damage and split ends. Spritz on your hair during the day as a hair healing aid or use before bed for an overnight moisturizing and repair treatment.

Available at most Beaners Fun Cuts locations. Safe for teens and adults.

Enjoy the rest of your summer!