Meet Shani

Today’s Five for Friday is Shani.  She and I went to high school at Christian Brothers.  She was tall, pretty, smart, athletic, funny, and always nice to everyone.  Since then she graduated from San Diego State, went to graduate school in New York, got married, had two adorable little boys, launched a website, and published a book: It’s Time For Your Checkup What To Expect When Going to a Doctor Visit!  Phew, that’s a lot of accomplishments.  Thankfully this over-achiever is happily sharing expert tips on her website Child Life Mommy.  One post at a time, she’s helping the rest of us tackle doctor’s visits, everyday life, and even potty training.  “Like” her Child life Mommy FB page for more tips from our Child Life expert.

Meet Shani


Hello Mama Momtourage followers, I am so excited to share a little bit of myself with you all. My name is Shani Thornton and I have three passions in life; my family, child life, and living a healthy lifestyle.

3 I am a California girl that has relocated to New York, all in the name of love. I met my fabulous New York husband over ten years ago while vacationing in Australia. He stole my heart and my zip code. We have now been married for 8 years, have two beautiful boys (51/2 and 2), a French bulldog and a house in the suburbs. Ahh, life is good, although I really miss Cali. We plan on moving back in three years when he retires from the NYPD.

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I went to graduate school in New York and became a Certified Child Life Specialist. The position is typically in a hospital setting working with pediatric patients and their families. We try to decrease fears, anxiety, and trauma that are often inflicted by the medical experience. We prepare kids for what will occur using play and child friendly language. We provide a sense of normalcy with playrooms, creative arts, peer interaction and a family-centered care approach. It is an incredibly rewarding position that I am very passionate about.

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DIY Worry Dolls  //  Learning Through Play  //  3 Ways to Hold Your Child For a Shot

When I decided to stay home with my kids, I wanted to still fill my child life cup, so I created Child Life Mommy. I blend my child life skills and parenting together to offer tips to parents and professionals about creative ways in working with kids. I cover topics such as preparing kids for a wellness visitpotty trainingbereavementtraveling, and more. Child Life Mommy has now expanded into a consulting practice, which is very exciting.


One of the largest accomplishments that I have had since launching my site, is publishing my first children’s book, It’s Time For Your Checkup What To Expect When Going to a Doctor VisitIt is social story to help prepare children and their families for a wellness visit, including vaccinations and a blood test.


My book provides tips on coping, distraction, medical play, and empathic language. It is now being sold on Amazon in both paperback and digital format. Check it out; it’s a great book to add to any home or school library. It is also a listed resource on Autism Speaks and the Child Life Council’s website.

Currently Coveting:


For the past 51/2 years my world has revolved around two little boys. I haven’t been away with just my husband for a night in over 4 years! That may sound normal to some OR scary to others. Well it is all about to change in the next week or so. My very courageous dad is flying in from Cali, to take over the daily duties of taking care of my munchkins, while my hubby and I take off for a few days to Washington D.C. I can’t wait!

I really love…


The gym and working out! I am addicted to staying fit and healthy. It is my one mommy break I get a few days a week, to release stress and keep my body and mind in check. Kickboxing, TRX, road biking, weight training, cardio intervals….I love it all!


With loving the gym, comes loving Lululemon Athletic wear. I never thought in a million years I would spend $90 on a pair of workout pants! It just seemed ridiculous… until I put a pair on. Oh, now I get it! This is what everyone is raving about. I ♥ Lulu!

Guilty Pleasure…

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I am a reality TV show junkie! I love all the Real Housewives, Survivor, Big Brother, Long Island Medium, Project Runway and pretty much the rest of them. I even got my five-year-old hooked on Love it or List it!

Fave beauty items:


Neutrogena Oil-Free Moisture Facial Moisturizer SPF15 $10.99

I love Neutrogena Daily Moisturizer with a SPF 15. It goes on oil-free and feels great on my skin.


bareMinerals Original Foundation SPF 15 $27

I also love Bare Minerals Original Foundation Broad Spectrum SPF15. Super easy to cover up some dark circles and gives my face an even tone without the feeling of a heavy liquid foundation.

Recent mommy moment…

collage 3 I’m getting ready to send my kiddo off to kindergarten. I have been shopping for the back to school list, making his Kindergarten sign and picking out his clothes for the first day of school. He is beyond excited, with no fears and I am a mix of emotions. People always say, “Enjoy every second of them being little because before you know it, they are heading off to school.”  Well that day has arrived. I’m trying to savor every moment before it goes too quickly. I know that you all can relate!



Thanks so much for taking the time to share your life with us Shani.  I can definitely use your expertise in the area of potty training.  My goodness this better be over soon.  Also, I’m loving the DIY Worry Doll post!  It’s a great idea and I may need to try it with my kiddos.  For more tips on making life for you and your kiddo easier “like” Shani’s Child life Mommy FB page here.  From daily life to travel to doctor’s visits and everything in between Shani always has an expert tip.

Congrats on your book!  I think it’s awesome!  You can purchase It’s Time For Your Checkup What To Expect When Going to a Doctor Visit here.  This is a great resource for moms with new babies, mom’s with nervous kiddos, any moms, grandparents, care givers, hospitals, schools, and doctor’s offices.

Have a great weekend!



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