Tips for New Hockey Moms

I am not an expert when it comes to hockey, but I am a mom of 3 hockey-loving boys. When they started playing hockey a few years ago, I didn't have a clue about what gear they needed or how to put it on, so I thought it might be helpful to share a few tips with all the NEW hockey moms out there.

First of all, you need to get the right equipment. We started with the youth hockey starter kit from Canadian Tire, and then we added the other gear we needed.  (It is definitely the cheapest way to get started).  

Basically, you'll need: skates (which are usually 1 size smaller than the child's shoe size), a stick (with a curve that fits the way they shoot), an approved helmet with a face mask, gloves, shoulder pads, elbow pads, shin pads, hockey pants, an equipment bag, jock/jill protective shorts, a neck guard, hockey socks, a jersey, hockey tape, and a water bottle.

Then, once you have all the gear, you'll need to know how to put it on.  Here's an easy step by step tutorial:

1)  Start with the clothes that you want to wear under the child's gear. My boys always wear long underwear (or PJs for early morning practices).
2)  Pull on the jock/jill shorts (which have velcro on them to hold up the hockey socks).
3)  Put on the shin pads (which are marked left/right).
4)  Put the hockey socks on over the shin pads, and secure the tops with the velcro on the shorts.
5)  Pull the hockey pants on over the shin pads and hockey socks.
6)  Put the shoulder pads over the child's head, and secure with the velcro.
7)  Secure the elbow pads (which are marked left/right) with the velcro.
8)  Put the jersey on over the shoulder pads and elbow pads.
9)  Don't forget the neck guard.
10) Buckle the helmet so that it is secure.
11) Pop on the gloves and skates, and hit the ice!

That's it.  If you have a little one playing sports this winter or fall, have fun, and stay warm!

Gina Bell (aka East Coast Mommy)

Disclosure: I am taking part in the Canadian Tire Jumpstart Pedal For Kids blog campaign. While I have received compensation as part of my affiliation with this program, the opinions shared are my own.

Alphabet Crafts - A to Z

Several months ago, my youngest son and I decided to "craft our way through the alphabet".  We had a lot of fun, and we successfully completed 26 alphabet crafts. Below, I share our 26 crafts + several other alphabet crafts your preschooler will LOVE!

Fun, right?  Below, you will find links to tutorials for all of the adorable alphabet crafts we completed.  You will also find free printable printing practice sheets for each of the letters.

A is for Apple and Alligator

B is for Bunny Ears and Bear

C is for Caterpillar and Cat

D is for Dog

E is for Elephant

F is for Face and Fox

G is for Guitar and Gumball

H is for Hat and House

I is for Ice Cream and Iguana

J is for Jet and Jellyfish

K is for Kite and King

L is for Lion and Ladybug

M is for Monkey and Mouse

N is for Necktie and Night

O is for Octopus and Owl

P is for Pirate Ship and Pig

Q is for Queen's Crown and Queen

R is for Rabbit

S is for Snake

T is for Turtle and Tree

U is for Umbrella and Unicorn

V is for Vase and Volcano

W is for Windsock

X is for Xylophone and X-ray

Y is for Yarn and Yellow

Z is for Zebra

I hope you enjoy these alphabet crafts as much as we did.

Gina Bell
(aka East Coast Mommy)

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