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We conducted an independent survey to determine the top ten children's books that should be in every family's library.

Er, well, no, we didn't actually do that. I just picked some of my favorites and organized them alphabeticaly, because I couldn't pick my favorite of the ten. They're all so good! My family doesn't even own all of these, so if anyone needs any Christmas gift ideas...

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Categories: development,


Ugh! I am so thankful the month of November is almost over. It seems that like Halloween costumes and Christmas decorations, the "What are you thankful for?" question starts popping up earlier and earlier every year. Really, throughout the month of October, you cannot stand in line at the check out and not see almost every magazine with the headlines, "How to be Thankful", "Show your Thanks this Season", "How to Have the Most Thankful Thanksgiving Ever", or some variation of reminding us to be thankful. Why can’t we just be thankful every day of the year?

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Categories: parent-stories,


November. It’s that time of year when we are reminded to reflect on what we are most thankful for. Most of us dig deep and give thanks for the major blessings in our lives like health, family and friends, and I am no different. I am most thankful that my Mom remains cancer free after her initial diagnosis four years ago, and pray that health and happiness rest on everyone this upcoming year. I remind myself to appreciate the people who help to keep me afloat when life gets crazy and to those who keep me grounded when things get too exciting.

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Categories: parent-stories,


I've well established that I enjoy fall and fall food. Well, I also love fall drinks, so there has to be a post about two of my favorite drinks - apple cider and hot chocolate. I searched for a few recipes to make at home and found more than I bargained for. Take a look at the recipes below and then check out the rest of the recipes I salivated over on our ParentSavvy Pinterest board. There is a great recipe for Nutella Hot Chocolate and a Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


Every mom has their own style, so why can't your little munchkins join in on the fun! From preppy to grunge, mom's show their personalities through their wardrobe. Kids love to show their personalities in clothes too, and what could be cuter than having a little mini me. Check out some of the mommy and me outfit pairings we came up with.

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Categories: lifestyle,


With every new school year, sport season or even new holiday season, it can easily feel like you’re on a crazy amusement park ride. It’s exciting and fun until you start to feel dizzy and you know you can’t get off the ride until it’s officially over! Once the year starts or the new season is underway, you can’t put the brakes on. There are so many commitments and obligations to add to the calendar. How do we keep our homes and families balanced while also maintaining our sanity?

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Categories: parent-stories,


Giving Back

I worked in a homeless shelter a couple years ago and the need was extreme all year long, but it seemed particularly acute during the holidays, so I want to spend part of my time and resources this season on those who could use it more than me.

If you and your family are looking to give back this season together, below is a list of ideas along with a list of regional nonprofits.

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Categories: lifestyle,


Fall is my favorite time of the year. Watching the leaves change color, visiting apple orchards and pumpkin patches, watching the sun sink over the horizon on walk with the smell of a fireplace in the air.

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Categories: nutrition, lifestyle,


In 2010, the United States had its highest outbreak of whooping cough (Pertussis) since 1959. Two years ago over 27,500 cases were reported, but the numbers could have been higher due to lack of diagnosis and under-reporting. In 1959, the nation saw 40,000 cases.

Health officials and the Centers for Disease Control are concerned 2012 may take over the top spot – warning it could be the worst outbreak ever.

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Categories: health-notes,


This past weekend, my husband and older son were out of town, so I was flying solo with my six-year-old. It was forecast to be a cold start to the weekend, and as we headed out Saturday morning to his 8:30 soccer game, they weren’t kidding! It was 27 degrees. Brrr. Yep, it felt like the perfect day to hunker down and eat bad food and watch bad TV.

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Categories: parent-stories,


My first experience as a dad was less than ideal. When my son Franklin was born, his mom and I were in a really tough time of our marriage. He was born premature and had to spend nine days in the NICU.

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Categories: parent-stories,


You can almost feel the electricity of excitement as they enter the Halloween or Harvest party area that you’ve prepared. Whether they’re in first grade or fifth, they bolt in with wide eyes, darting from corner to corner, to see what decorations, games and treats you’ve brought for them. It’s party time!

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Categories: parent-stories, lifestyle,


Decorating a nursery can be exhausting, but it should also be fun! So many tough decisions to make...color, style, theme; but I think every mom and dad are always really proud of the final result. A trending color combo for nurseries right now is grey and yellow.

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Categories: lifestyle,


I will preface this blog by first admitting that I bring the holiday chaos on myself and love the crazy excitement that fills our house during the month of October. With that said, I still wonder, what happened to the simple trick-or-treating that I experienced when I was a young girl? I don’t remember my parents being so invested in this secondary holiday.

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Categories: parent-stories,


October is full of fun fall and Halloween events for kids. Check out the list below of events going on throughout the month of October. And if you know of any events to add to the list, write them in the comments below.

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Categories: lifestyle,