Category: Parenting

Do You Fight Dirty with Your Kids?

Posted on Apr 16, 2021 by 3 Comments

OK, fighting is a harsh way to say it. Discipline. Boundaries. Rules. When your child breaks them, and you’ve got not one nerve left to handle it calmly, what verbal weapons fly out of your mouth?

My mother’s go to arsenal was a mass of starving children in Africa and “just wait till your father comes home!” So, in my little brain I was surrounded by hungry eyes or I was quaking in fear till 6pm when Dad came home.

The thing is - and often we don’t realize this until we become parents ourselves - parents need a break. Only we don’t get one. So, mom, I’m just apologizing again for…well…everything, OK! Read more…

Site Spotlight: Garden with Your Kids {kidsgardening.org}

Posted on Apr 13, 2021 by 3 Comments

Spring has arrived, which is the perfect time to get outdoors with your kids and introduce them to gardening. The pride they will feel when they see their first tomato bloom or their first flower bud will be priceless.

For those of you who do not have a green thumb (like me) but want to introduce your children to this lovely past-time, I have found a fantastic resource for you - Kidsgardening.org. Read more…

Breast or Bottle? Whatever You Choose It’s O.K.

Posted on Apr 13, 2021 by 6 Comments

When you become a first time parent you are faced with a ton of choices for how to go about raising your child. It can be overwhelming and seem like everyone has an opinion.

Well, they do.

But you can choose whether or not you pay attention to those opinions because ultimately, you have to decide what is best for you and your child. I am of the mindset that there isn’t one right way to do anything and I don’t think that anyone should tell you how to go about feeding your child as long as you’re not shoving Twinkies down their throat as their primary source of nutrition. Additionally, I’m sure this goes without saying, but if you choose to neglect your child altogether, I’m going to have something to say about that. Read more…

Table Talk: 5 House Rules for Family Dinners

Posted on Apr 12, 2021 by 3 Comments

It’s so easy to become disconnected as a family. Between varying school, work and social schedules, it’s very easy for families to simply eat on the fly and never sit down at their table together for a meal. Some studies suggest that family dinners improve the communication and well being of family relationships.

So with that in mind, I encourage you to commit to family dinners on a regular basis using the five house rules below. These would, of course, be tweaked according to the age of your children. I have twins that are toddlers, so they would not be doing dishes just yet, but they could certainly sit at the table and enjoy the meal and bring their plastic plates into the sink when they are done. In short, adapt these rules accordingly.

Read more…

Life with Baby Simplified: eBabytracker

Posted on Apr 11, 2021 by 2 Comments

The first year is filled with sleepless nights, trial and error schedules and milestones we can’t help but brag about hitting. The first giggle, rolling over, the first time they sit up and crawl - those are momentous occasions we have barely a minute to jot down on a scrap of paper, but now all of them can be chronicled using the eBabytracker application on your handy dandy smartphone.

And I’m totally jealous. Read more…

Teaching Character: Open Mindedness

Posted on Apr 11, 2021 by 3 Comments

At a parent’s night at my daughter’s preschool, a number of us were talking and the idea of a biography class came up. Biography not for writing books. Biography for looking at one’s own past. As in, arm chair psychology, kind of. Or crazy train. That, too.

This being California, a circle of us moms decided we’d all take this class together. Now, we don’t know each other more than, “hi” and “bye” in the mornings and afternoons. But we certainly are about to! I’m a little scared. I’m also a little excited.

Whatever comes up, I’ll have to have an open mind. And Kleenex. Read more…

Teachable Moments: Money

Posted on Apr 9, 2021 by 3 Comments

Teaching your kids about money today can be a challenge when many of us simply swipe our credit cards and rarely balance a bank register. There is little handling of cash and breaking out the calculator to balance the “books” is becoming less frequent.

So, with that in mind, how do we teach our kids about the value of a dollar on a daily basis? How do we infuse money talk, and more importantly, fiscal responsibility into their lives? Read more…

Boosting Your Kids’ Confidence

Posted on Apr 6, 2021 by 3 Comments

My mother wasn’t much for the big “hurrahs!” and as a result, I’m probably over-the-top when it comes to that kind of stuff. I’ve talked before about how I’ve always overcompensated, especially in light of my divorce, and how overcompensating has likely set repercussions in motion that I never would have imagined.

Anyway, I’ve always tried to give my kids confidence. Sometimes via tough love, sometimes via profuse admiration.

So, how do I do it? It’s definitely not rocket science, I think sometimes parents forget that it’s the really easy stuff their kids actually love. And it’s these really simple things that build their solid foundations.
Read more…

Navigating A High Risk Pregnancy

Posted on Apr 6, 2021 by 1 Comment

It’s a thing most moms do: telling their birth story. Like an initiation ritual, or a right of passage. I was sharing mine with my daughter’s preschool teacher, going on about giving birth in a teaching hospital and the veritable audience in attendance when she told me she was in the hospital for 4 months. On bed rest. In the hospital. 4 months.

She carried her twins to full term - healthy boys - but from the outset it didn’t look like that would be a likely outcome. Hers is not my story to tell, so I can’t go into all of her details. But it got me to thinking about how our different baby experiences unite us on a continuum of shared smiles and tears, hormones and fears. Read more…

Teaching Character: Curiosity

Posted on Apr 4, 2021 by 5 Comments

Curiosity (and fear of Russia) got us to the moon. Curiosity gave us oysters - imagine being the first guy to think, hmmm, what if I crack open this wavy rock and slurp up whatever slimy nugget is inside?

Did you know that the entire reason James Cameron made Titanic wasn’t because he wanted to tell a Romeo and Juliet story on a sinking ship. It was the ship. It was diving down in the real ocean to explore, and incidentally film, the actual Titanic at the bottom of the North Atlantic Ocean. His curiosity, mixed with a good dose of imagination, got him to the bottom of the ocean. Look how that turned out for him. Read more…

Tag Team Parenting: Strategies that Work

Posted on Apr 3, 2021 by No Comments

If you are working this parenting thing as a team, then it makes sense to have some strategies in place to ensure success and quite frankly, to salvage sanity, especially in those early years.

When it comes to the day-in, day-out household duty and parenting grind, it can become a lot when it weighs on the shoulders of one, but if you don’t have to go it alone, then you should work as a team. Read more…

Are You a Short Order Cook?

Posted on Apr 2, 2021 by 3 Comments

Oh, if only they made a tool that safely pried open my toddler’s mouth.

I didn’t intend to become a short order cook, but somehow it happened. Dinner is served and my girls find reasons why they don’t like it and won’t eat it. Then I make something else. And something else. And something else. Do you know that one night they said “yuck” to me and I about lost it. That’s when I realized something had to change.

Certainly you’ve experienced this. I do hope I’m not alone in this struggle!

Then a few days later I walked into my daughter’s preschool for lunch and there she was, eating spinach. YES! Spinach. Not a “yuck” in sight. Oh, the positive affects of peer pressure! When I asked the teacher how she manages to get the kids all eating their veggies, here is what she said: Read more…

So Your Toddler Lies, Way To Go

Posted on Mar 30, 2021 by 3 Comments

Yea! Your child has started lying to you. Looks like you’ve got an intelligent kid on your hands.

Lying, like cheating and stealing (which your child does, too, by the way), can actually be a good thing. Even though it does have a stigma attached and brings to mind visions of the principal’s office or mall security cops or even worse. Yet for children under 7, who incidentally lie, cheat and steal all the time, those actions are wholly different actions than we adults think they are. Read more…