First, it was this seemingly innocuous summer hazard. Now, parents need to look out for another hidden danger: sandals.
Yes, those sandals may be the cutest thing ever. But a UK mom of a two-year-old girl was horrified to find that a pair of simple jelly shoes - a birthday present, no less - left her daughter's feet in a bloody mess.
After only wearing the new pair of pink sandals for just half an hour, little Esme Connor was left with deep cuts in her right ankle.
Though the sandals were from the UK retailer, Next, they are not dissimilar to styles found this side of the pond, too.
"It's not like she was running around in them for hours," said mom, Lisa Connor. "She was just plodding around the house and then came running in in tears. There was blood all round her ankle and on the soles of her foot. Of course there will be new shoes that rub, but this is ridiculous."
Connor is hoping photos shared on Facebook will prompt Next to recall the sandals.
Even though the site listing for the item claims they are "fun jelly sandals for short term wear only" - maybe they are not fit for wear any length of time, given how active toddlers are.
For Connor, it was heartbreaking to see her daughter in pain, and unable to fully communicate.
"She was moaning and whining, and I initially put it down to being tired," said Connor, before she discovered the source of Esme's discomfort. "There was so much blood. Her dad had to spend an hour calming her down. It ruined her birthday weekend really."
Jelly shoes have been around forever. Or at least since I was a kid, which makes them, like, really ancient. And they have always been uncomfortable, blister-inducing, and dirt cheap for a reason.
Next time you are tempted by the jelly, keep walking. And when it comes to kids' growing little tootsies, word to the wise: steer clear of this popular footwear, too. Your best bet is the old faithful socks and runners combo. Their feet will thank you for it.
RELATED: Podiatrists: Crocs Hate Your Feet
Hang on, there's dust in my eyes. Or something... This video of a dad surprising his boy with a belated birthday gift is guaranteed to knock you hard in the feels.
In the footage of the viral clip, 12-year-old Braheim looks clearly dejected as he slumps in the front seat, getting ready to head to his baseball game. He thinks his dad forgot his birthday.
What he doesn't know is that his unemployed dad, 36-year-old Devon Fowler, has something special tucked away for him in the trunk. Something his son wanted badly. Something his dad had to work odd jobs just to afford.
Yeah, I defy you to stay dry-eyed as you watch Braheim's reaction when he pops the trunk.
I can relate. There's something about knowing your parents can't afford all the special things. There's a disappointment, but also resignation.
I grew up with a hard-working single mom. Like many single parents, she bent over backwards to give me the best. Yet at the same time there was this realization even in my young brain that things were harder for us than they were for other families. That I couldn't have everything I wanted whenever I wanted it.
I see that same realization reflected in Braheim's eyes as they well up. Man, that parking lot must be dusty, too...
My son will never know that feeling, and in some way, it annoys me that he takes his creature comforts for granted. He is luckier than he'll ever know.
This poignant video has hearts - and wallets - opening all over the place. It has already notched up more than 23 million views. A Kickstarter campaign is helping bankroll the boy's dreams of becoming a pro baseball player. Hopefully all the attention will help his dad get a job, too.
See, sometimes the internet isn't such a hostile place.
No bones about it, being a kid today is way less idle and way more stressful than it used to be.
One mom has had it up to here with extracurriculars. In a post on Today, she laments the pressure on today's kids to succeed - even when they are supposed to be on vacation.
Summers used to be lazy and boring - and that was a good thing.
These days, every week of the summer break is scheduled with camps and formal activities. It's not enough for kids to simply enjoy hobbies, they must pursue them relentlessly, competitively, to an end.
Case in point, the mom is torn between allowing her 13-year-old daughter attend a relaxed, woodsy camp or an intensive ballet course. ("'Summer' and 'intensive' don't even belong in the same sentence.")
Her daughter worries that if she doesn't attend the ballet intensive, she will fall behind her peers.
It's sad that summer should not be immune from stress. After all, the school year is already packed with academic pressure, and to get the edge today's kids must also possess impressive "extracurriculars" if they want to land a coveted college spot.
It seems that even fun must be scheduled and carefully plotted.
"I’m not sure when doing nothing after school fell out of favor. As a kid, I was a pro at nothing. We all were," writes the mom, who worries that if her daughter spends too much time dancing, there will be little time to discover other passions in life.
As the mom points out, summer is about doing "activities that don’t transfer well to a resume, like swimming in a lake, running to get mail, talking without the aid of technology." Kids are sorely lacking such non-activities, and it's hurting their health, not to mention our wallets.
However, as one commenter cautions, we should take our cues from our children. If we deny them a chance to indulge in their true passion during the summer, they may grow resentful. In other words, if the girl really wants to dance, let her dance. But we should also factor in plenty of time to let her vegetate.
I can't relate. My childhood summers involved lingering at neighbourhood parks, buying Freezies, and biking around with no real agenda. The days were wide open and there were no expectations. Because no one told us what to do or how to spend our every minute, my cousins and I were able to come up with our own plans and projects. We didn't rely on adults to entertain or stimulate us - not they would have dreamed of it anyway; they had other shit to attend to.
I'm not saying kids need a full two months of blank calendar space, yet some of that summer spontaneity and open-handedness needs to make a comeback.
The art of being lazy and bored is seriously undervalued. Summer is about letting kids soak up some real downtime before school starts - yes, even the kind that involves loafing in their own backyard and driving their parents crazy.