In This Newsletter:

Willy Monster Is
Coming Soon!

Willy Monster

Bedtime Fears Disappear
with Willy Monster

In this imaginative story recording, children will befriend a good and kind monster named Willy.  Willy Monster watches over the children on Earth and makes sure they are safe at night while they sleep.  Young listeners will travel to Boogey Land with Willy Monster and a little boy named Stephen.  There, Stephen will successfully confront the boogey monster who has been scaring him.

This story is an especially powerful tool to help children face and overcome a fear. (Recommended for kids
ages five and up)

The Floppy Sleep
Game Book

A Complete Guide for Parents on children's Sleep and Relaxation

You can learn more about the book and order it via our website by clicking here.


October, 2008

Dear Friends,

As you probably know, each newsletter includes a new Dream Starter for children which I created to help them learn to purposefully tune inward and relax.  In much the same way, I hope that my little stories and insights serve the same purpose— whether you are a parent, or not. I’m afraid that as you begin reading this month’s article, you may think that my purpose was simply to kevetch (or possible inform you about the perils of bidding on airline flights).  Please keep reading. I promise that my complaints will come to an end.  Ultimately, I’m sharing this little slice of my life because it reminded me that joy doesn’t necessarily come from what we do; rather, it comes from within.  (Although as an added benefit to you, I will advise you to be careful when bidding for flights online!) 

And parents, don’t miss the related article with advice on how to help kids turn around their negative thought patterns (i.e. complaining).  To be honest, the same advice will be effective for grown-ups!

I’ve taken a new approach to the Dream Starter in this month’s newsletter.  I often get requests from people who have purchased The Floppy Sleep Game asking for more Dream Starters.  This is why I include an original Dream Starter in each newsletter.  My hope for the Dream Starter is that parents, grandparents or any adult trying to teach a child how to relax themselves to sleep will read the Dream Starter at bedtime as a way to help their child ease into a restful sleep. 

In an effort to make it easier to use the Dream Starters, I have provided a link to a printer friendly version of the Dream Starter so you can easily read it at bedtime.  I have intentionally made it in a big bold font so it can easily be read in a low light room.  Your feedback on this change would be much appreciated.  Please email me with your comments.

Many Blessings,


Happiness--An Inside Job

Click here to view a video version of this article.

I recently flew back to my hometown in Nebraska to attend the wedding of a friend I’ve known since the seventh grade. I was really looking forward to Connie’s wedding.  She is a wonderful person who was marrying for the first time at the age of fifty-four.  And in the quest to find her prince, I had heard stories about plenty of frogs along the way. But the man she was marrying was no frog.  By all accounts, he was a wonderful man who returned her deep love for him.

But I didn’t book my ticket early and the flights were pricey.  To try and save money, I bid on a flight at a well-known online discounted travel site.  For those of you who have never used this site, I’ll briefly explain how it works: You choose the day you want to travel, enter your credit card information, and name your price.  If your price is accepted, your card is charged and flights are chosen without your input.

My first bid was turned down so I began hypothetically checking on other dates and airports.  I was surprised when a message suddenly appeared on my screen saying, “Congratulations!  Your bid has been accepted!”   Too late, I realized that I had accidentally purchased airline tickets. 

I looked at the details of my itinerary in dismay.  Out of consideration, I’ll spare you most of the gory details.  However, to understand the level of my consternation, it’s pertinent to know that I would have to rent a car and leave my house by 3AM in order to drive the two hours to Los Angeles International Airport.  My connecting flight was in a city which was at least an hour or two in the wrong direction.  And the return flight involved a similarly miserable scenario.

I had a difficult time accepting the inconvenient itinerary and went about trying to change it.  I called the bargain travel site, the airline, and even stopped at my local airport to plead my case in person.  I found out that they really weren’t kidding when they said that the tickets were non-refundable and non-changeable.

At this point, I realized that I had a few choices: 1.) skip the wedding of an old friend, 2.) grudgingly make the trip, while continuing to harbor my grievance--making myself and everyone around me miserable, or 3.)  accept my itinerary and enjoy the adventure. 

Wisely, I decided on option three.  And I’m so glad I did! 

God Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change….
(Such as airline tickets accidentally purchased on bargain bidding sites)

The Courage to change the things I can,
(Such as my attitude)

And the wisdom to know the difference. 

Once I accepted my fateful itinerary, I was ready to enjoy each and every moment of it.  And my entire trip served to remind me that when we are fully present, the universe conspires to bring wonderful circumstances our way.  My life was enriched by the people that I met on each leg of the journey.  The connection with one fellow-traveler was so strong that we plan to stay in touch.  If I’d had a different flight schedule, I would have missed making this delightful connection. And if my baggage had included itinerary grievances, my negative emotional energy would have influenced everything I did and everyone I met. 

The effort that it took to travel was miniscule, compared to the indescribable joy that I felt when I saw Connie walk down the aisle.  I hadn’t expected to be overcome with emotion.  Of course, I was happy for my friend. Still, nothing prepared me for Connie’s shining radiance.  It was as if I could see into her soul.  She was the epitome of a person who was living in the moment.  There was not a trace of self consciousness, apprehension or nervousness on her face.  In all my life, I have never witnessed such beauty and unbridled joy.  Connie’s tribe of friends and family recognized it as well.  The authenticity of her joy touched our very souls and the entire church burst into spontaneous applause.  Connie felt the depth of our love and was momentarily overwhelmed with emotion.   

My trip included many other magical and touching moments.  As I think back upon it, I can recognize that the gifts were bestowed upon me once I was open to receiving them.  And I could receive them once I got rid of the excess baggage, (i.e. my complaints and grievances.)  We often believe that we’ll be happy at some point in the future when--and only when--this, that, or the other happens.  But in reality, we can enjoy the present moment when we take responsibility for our inner state.  After all, happiness truly is an inside job. 

Helping Kids Turn Around Negative Thought Patterns

Like adults, many children—especially older children and teens, can become habitual complainers.  It’s easy for it to become an unconscious habit, which means that kids don’t even realize they’re doing it.  They may even get used to watching for situations in which they think they’re being treated unfairly.  Oftentimes, their perception does not come close to the reality of the situation.

As a parent, common sense tells us that it’s important to be a positive role model and become aware of our own negativity.  After all, when we are around someone who is enthusiastic, positive, and cheerful, we often will find that our spirits are lifted.  In contrast, when we are around someone who chronically complains, our mood and energy are likely to plummet. 

Still, if your son or daughter is a chronic complainer, simply modeling positivity may not be enough.  And we don’t want our children to simply stuff their negative feelings inside themselves and feign happiness.

The starting point for real change is to help kids to be in touch with how they feel—and what is real inside themselves.  One of the most effective ways to do this is through relaxation. 

We know that children who can purposely relax their bodies and mind have an easier time sleeping.  But it can also be the first step in being able to work through their negative feelings, problem solve, and improve everyday experiences. 

The steps that can help children to fall asleep can also help them to deal with their negative emotions. 

Step One:  Guided Relaxation
Teach children to first tense and then relax each of the muscle groups, a technique known as progressive relaxation.  Oftentimes, negative feelings present themselves as tension within a child’s body.  But when the body relaxes, negative emotions may be released as the mind becomes clear and calm. 

Step Two:  Focusing On the Breath
Children are naturally fascinated by their own breathing, just getting quiet and paying attention to it is extremely soothing.  Rather than thinking about the worries of their day, as children focus on their own breath, their minds will continue to become quiet and calm.

Step Three:  Accessing the Subconscious Mind
After relaxing their bodies and focusing on their breath, the conscious mind is relaxed enough to access the subconscious mind.  At this point, visualization as well as positive affirmations and thoughts can be extremely powerful and bring about healthy, positive changes.  

The creative resources and imagination of the unconscious mind can bring about insights that solve problems and move kids away from being afraid to being confident, from being stressed to being relaxed and from being unsatisfied to being happy.  It opens the door to the vast intelligence of the unconscious mind. 

For an array of fun relaxation techniques for children,
check out The Floppy Sleep Game Book. 

October Dream Starter:
A Surprise for the Flower Fairies

Dream Starters are visualizations which promote relaxation, imagination and well-being as they guide children into the world of dreams.

In this month’s Dream Starter, the Dream Maker takes the Dreamers to surprise the Flower Fairies with magical pumpkins.  The Dreamers leave their concerns on Willow tree’s strong shoulders and slide down to the Forest of Dreams.  It is autumn in the Forest of Dreams and your Dreamer picks a magical jack-o-lantern to give to the tiny Flower Fairies they can play in when the weather gets cool.  But there’s a surprise for the Dreamer’s when they find out they can play with the fairies in the jack-o-lanterns too.  After much fun playing in the jack-o-lanterns, the Dreamers fall asleep in the comforting flowers and soon wind up in their own bed.

Click here for the printer friendly version of this month's Dream Starter.

Download an audio version of this month's Dream Starter here.

Happy Halloween!

Children love to pretend and Halloween is likely to be their favorite holiday!  Have fun but remember that young kids are not yet capable of fully differentiating between what is real and what is make-believe.  Be vigilant about protecting them from scary Halloween movies and realistic haunted houses. 

© 2008 Patti Teel, All Rights Reserved