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5 Tips for Spring Cleaning with Young Children

Spring is the time of year for cleaning. Your young children can help with cleaning tasks, especially when they are members of a team that works together. Such activities help children focus on a task, talk about what needs to be done and follow through until completion. These experiences can promote a sense of competence and show children that everyone benefits from teamwork.

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Categories: parenting, development,


Family Meal Time Conversation - Part 3

In previous posts, I wrote about the benefits of eating together as a family and 5 tips for making family meal times possible.

Today, I have some suggestions for making the most of your time together at dinner time. It's easy to just eat and have "yes" and "no" type conversations, but getting to really know your family takes some more work

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Categories: nutrition, parenting,


5 Tips for Family Meal Times - Part 2

Yesterday, I discussed the benefits of eating together, but we all know how difficult that can be with everyone's busy schedules.

Here are 5 tips to help you reach a goal of eating together with your family at least 4 times a week.

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Categories: nutrition, parenting,


Sitting down to a meal with everyone's hectic schedules is one of the hardest things to do as a family, but eating together provides big benefits.

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Categories: nutrition, parenting,


Babysitting Training Course

Emergency preparedness is an important skill to learn especially as an adolescent that cares for other children. Babysitters need to build a foundation of childcare and emergency care procedures such as choking and CPR. National Safety Council, Nebraska's Babysitting Training course provides 11 to 15 year olds with the knowledge and confidence to be responsible and safe sitters.

National Safety Council, Nebraska (NSCN) has highly-trained First Aid and CPR instructors that teach this course allowing the students to learn life-saving skills in an appropriate and interactive environment. The course follows curriculum created and approved by the American Academy of Pediatrics and incorporates hands-on activities and basic first aid and CPR techniques.

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Categories: parenting, health-notes,


Stressed Out!

I was a sociology major in college. Oh sure, that's probably one of those majors that you see in the top ten lists of what not to major in if you ever want to make any money. But to me, college was about expanding your mind and studying things that really interested you—where the money would come from and what I'd do with it wasn't exactly on the mind of my then 19-20 year old self.

My most memorable course was a seminar about women working while raising a family. We spent several weeks studying a book by Arlie Russell Hochschild called The Second Shift. (Read an excerpt of the The Second Shift.) This book was a study about dual-career households and how much work (childcare, housework, etc.) a woman actually does in addition to her paying job. In her research, Hochschild discovered that women worked 15 hours longer each week than their partners—thus the coining of the term "second shift" in how it related to dual-career families.

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Categories: parenting, parent-stories,


Getting Your Toddler to Sleep

It's the end of a long day and you have finally sat down to unwind after getting the kids to bed when suddenly you hear that familiar patter of little feet. Oh no, you know exactly where this is going… "Mommy, I can't sleep."

Your first thought probably is, "You've only been up there for 5 minutes, no one falls asleep that fast. I just got on the computer/started watching my shows/etc... PLEASE go to bed." But you know that kind of reason doesn't resonate with a toddler. It's time to go into bedtime combat role.

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How to Build a Dress Up Box

My daughter is quite the dress up fashionista. She has about as many pretend clothes as she does real ones, and goes through several costume changes each day to show them off! Her collection has been gathered from numerous sources, and it's always a bit nostalgic to sort through the pieces and remember the story behind each accessory. For those of you with your own tiny fashion gurus at home, I've put together some tips for curating your own magical dress up box!

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Categories: parenting, parent-stories,


Protecting Your Kids Without Over Protecting Them

Encouraging kids to play outside is important year round. Free play has been shown to help with how children approach problems whether in school or on the playground. In order to keep your kids safe – without hovering over them, I recommend establishing some summer ground rules. These are good to follow:

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Categories: parenting,


The ABC's of Baby's Zzzzs!

Did you know that sleep is the primary activity of the brain during early development? As a matter of fact, sleep is a critical part of a baby’s healthy growth and development; especially a baby’s mental and physical health.  So what are the healthy sleep patterns for infants? How long should your baby be sleeping?

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6 Ideas to Beat the Bedtime Battles

"Just 15 minutes longer." "I'm not tired!" "I don't want to get up!"

Sound familiar? Kids and parents frequently clash about when children need to sleep – and for how long. The National Sleep Foundation reports that 69 percent of children have sleep problems. Kids resist sleeping for many reasons: overstimulation, caffeine, nightmares, and even snoring.

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It's snowing outside, 15 degrees with a wind chill that makes it feel even colder. Why am I talking about gardening-right? Why am I talking about gardening-right? This is the PERFECT time to start planning your spring garden! Get your children involved too!

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Categories: parenting, lifestyle,


6 Ways to Promote a Healthy Weight in Your Child

Maybe you're concerned about your child's weight. Maybe your child's pediatrician has expressed concern or perhaps you have been trying to make healthy changes for a while now. What do you do?

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Categories: nutrition, parenting,


Screening for Adolescent Depression

New guidelines ask pediatricians to screen pre-teens and teenagers for depression. This is a good addition - due to the number of teens who go undetected for the disease.

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Cold Weather Activity Precautions for Your Kids

I am always glad when parents are concerned about exercise and their children.

Statistics show that almost a third of children and adults are obese. In addition to childhood health risks, studies have found that overweight kids are at greater risk of becoming obese adults, with all the health problems associated with obesity lasting throughout their lives.

These long winter months make it tough to get outside and cabin fever may be settling in. Your children may be looking for ways to get outside and burn off some energy, and the cold weather might also be an excuse for kids to increase time spent watching TV, playing video games or using electronics.

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Categories: parenting, health-notes,