Real Talk

The Importance of Clean-Up: 10 Ways to Boost Help

Our young son was building tanks and trucks from a gigantic plastic bin filled with Legos. It was a multi-day process that required experimental crashes down the stairs, and head-on collisions between vehicles to see which design was stronger. On day three I surveyed the mess, the wrecks, the scattered bricks of plastic. I was […]

The Most Powerful Words in the World

It was a long day filled with tasks. I wanted more time, more leisure, more space between the doing of things. I sighed and pulled on my boots. Our family was coming up on the first year anniversary of my husband’s death and we were all struggling with the firsts—the first Thanksgiving without his gravy, […]

On Raising Resilient Kids: 10 Ways to Let Go

There is a lively discussion in the parenting world about how much parents need to manage their children’s lives, but there is no doubt when kids are left alone with a new idea or skill they are more engaged and willing to tolerate mistakes.  This leads to resiliency, a skill we all need to face […]

What to Do with all that Halloween Candy?!

by Bridgette Blakey It’s that one night a year where every child in America is rushing to finish every last bite of dinner, just to be set free throughout the neighborhoods to collect candy in a rampage! After the last “Trick or Treat” they rush home to dump the entire bag of candy out on […]

Where R U? Parenting and Technology

One morning I took my grandson Finn to the same park I had taken his mama and her brothers when she was a girl. I remembered the anchor and solace that playground had provided for my friends and me—the kids climbing and tumbling largely ignored by the mothers swapping stories. Oh sometimes things would get […]

Manners Matter! Kitchen Table Etiquette for Kids

My 3-year-old grandson and I were eating dinner together. His father is British and manners matter in their household. “It’s important not too chew with your mouth open,” I said to Finn. “Like this,” and I smacked and chomped noisily, a little piece of chicken dangling from my lips. Finn looked at me solemnly. “That’s […]

Mom-n-Me Breakfasts at the Diner

It isn’t always easy being part of a big family. There is always someone older or younger than you, more needy, louder, bigger, or faster. Sometimes your voice is lost in the crazy swelling orchestra of brothers and sisters stretching up and out. There are dentist appointments, baseball games, and school carnivals. Sometimes it seems […]

Back to School, Back to Routine: 4 Ways to Ease the Transition

School had started and I got a phone call from a teacher who said that she was concerned about the recess behavior of our son. He was overly challenging to another boy and often interrupted other kids’ peaceful play. I hung up. I was exhausted, a little angry with the boy. He came home from […]

Your After Baby Body

by Bridgette Blakey It’s been six months since I gave birth, and the thought of putting on a swimming suit still terrifies me. It’s not that I ‘haven’t lost the weight,’ which so many people are caught up on. It’s that my body is different. Carrying a baby to term has a similar effect on […]

10 Secrets of Happy Families

There is no one way, one path, to a happy family. The rules of happiness change from family to family, and from culture to culture, but there are certain collective tenets that invite depth and meaning to our relationships. 1. Deposit the qualities into your relationships that you wish to withdraw. Think of the person […]

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