parenting

At a Loss for Words

I had a lot of uncertainty when Riley was born. How would I know what she needed? How would I know that she didn’t die when I thought she was sleeping? How little sleep can I get before my body shuts down? One thing I was always certain of though was that she was advanced. Yes, I was absolutely sure that every milestone she hit was early and was perfectly executed. Disappointment struck each time I took her to a well visit and the doctor didn’t automatically refer her to some specialized doctor for geniuses. They may not have realized her extraordinary presence when they held her, but I sure did. I imagine it is the same way every new mom feels about her firstborn. I knew Riley was amazing and could do anything. (more…)

Age-Appropriate Chores – A New Start to the New Year

The year 2016 has now come and gone, and we are well into the new year. The past year certainly was not a great year. As I complained to a friend this past week about the tragedies (some real, some in my own mind) of the year, I was reminded that it was not all bad. No, of course it was not all bad. There were many highlights. We experienced great times with friends and family, a handful of family adventures, and I continued to have the good fortune of being able to watch the girls reach more exciting milestones. One of those highlights and milestones was Riley turning five. (more…)

7 Steps to a Less Stressful To-Do List

This holiday season, as with all holiday seasons before it, Santa was fast at work making his list and checking it twice. When it comes to list making, he is the master. Can you imagine how difficult it must be to be responsible for and track each person’s naughty or nice status and cross-reference it with what he or she wants? Even with the most advanced Excel skills, this would be a daunting task. But each year that jolly old elf manages to do it and, presumably, maintains everything he needs to in his own life.

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Six Important Potty Training Lessons

I find potty training to be very similar to the lies that are spread about sleep training. When “teaching” your kids how to sleep, you are led to believe that you are supposed to let them cry it out. Just wait long enough and they will fall asleep. Let’s get real. All kids are different, and unless you have a supercompliant kid by nature, they are teaching you how to sleep. Whether you pretend it is in your control is your choice. For potty training, it’s the same. I have now gone through the process two times: once with a naturally stubborn and unfocused kid and once with a self-starting child who is interested in cleanliness. My girls were on different ends of the spectrum when it came to readiness and interest, yet I learned there were still similarities in both experiences. Here is what I’ve learned. (more…)