To all those TY beanie baby lovers out there,
I was inspired by a five year old recently who helped me discover an amazing use for the old plastic tag protector hearts! They can be used to help children identify who they love and what helps them feel safe. They draw small pictures of these things and people and fill their plastic heart with it, showing they can love and hold people in their hearts even when they are not with them. The plastic heart protects the drawings and allows the children to carry them with them due to the small pocket-friendly size.
These are great for separation anxiety too! Have child draw people they love and have trouble separating from in their plastic heart and have caregiver draw the child and others they love in their own plastic heart. That way the child can see the adult loves and holds the child in their heart even when they are not with them and vice versa. The hearts are great because they are small, plastic, and fit perfectly in a pocket or even a wallet. Children benefit from seeing the adult cares enough to bring the heart with the child’s picture or drawing inside with them when they leave.
I have also used these with teens. Simply have teen or adult identify people, places, memories, and things that support him or her and help him or her feel safe. Draw or write them on small pieces of paper and fill the heart. This can help the teen feel more collected and realize internal safety and peacefulness is always accessible despite outer life circumstances.
To all those who have no idea what a beanie baby tag protector is,
Don’t worry. You can buy them pretty cheap on EBay. Or better yet, get creative! Make your own plastic covering that can be carried around (small ziplock bag even). Feel free to post other ideas too!
Reduce, REUSE, spread happiness and love. And It’s definitely okay to recycle too. 🙂