Family Articles

Taking Care of Mothers: A Necessity, Not a Luxury

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

Taking Care of Mothers: A Necessity not a Luxury

“Be still and heal.”

 – Thich Nhat Hanh,

Vietnamese monk

How that insight could have helped me as a new mom … if I’d had even an inkling of the value of being still.

No one prepared me for the unrelenting demands of motherhood. The realities of a 24/7 responsibility that left no time for myself. That lonely time after the front door closed behind my husband each morning, and I felt like I had to cope and should be happy about it.

9 Tips for Getting Kids with ADHD Organized for School

Tuesday, September 16th, 2014

9 Tips for Getting Kids with ADHD Organized for SchoolWhen it comes to school, we expect all kids to be organized. But we don’t realize just how complicated this really is, according to Elaine Taylor-Klaus, an educator and parenting coach. For kids with ADHD, getting organized is a big challenge.

In fact, ADHD affects the very skills that are required for success in school. Kids with ADHD have difficulty getting started, prioritizing, planning, managing their time and emotions, staying on task and focusing, she said. It’s the nature of the disorder, which impairs the executive functions of the brain.

Plus, each school year typically requires new systems, new habits, new books and new lockers, said Laurie Dupar, a trained psychiatric nurse practitioner and ADHD coach.

It’s important for parents, kids and teachers to realize just how difficult school-related tasks are for kids with ADHD. Fortunately, there are many strategies that help. Here are nine insights and techniques to try.

5 Divorce Facts That Might Change Your Idea of Splitting Up

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

WhyKidsDivorcedParentsDivorce

Find out how 50 percent of divorcees feel about their separation.

Many people think they have it all figured out when it comes to divorce. The whole “50 percent of marriages end in divorce” statistic gets thrown around a lot. Everyone knows someone whose family was torn apart by it. But there’s so much more to know about ending marriages.

How to Love Yourself

Sunday, September 14th, 2014

How to Love YourselfI have a confession to make. I have a reminder on my phone that goes off every morning at 8 o’clock that says simply, “You’re awesome.” This might sound dumb but you’d be surprised how often I forget that fact.

This is just one tool in my arsenal of tricks that I use to combat the depression and paranoia that come with a mental illness.

I’ve been in some pretty dark places and I’ve thought many times about putting an end to things when I’m having a hard time, but then, every day at 8 a.m. my phone vibrates and I’m reminded that I’m awesome.

The Ice Bucket Challenge: Remembering Loved Ones Affected by ALS

Wednesday, September 10th, 2014

ice_cubes

I am impressed with the viral nature of the “Ice Bucket Challenge,” but I’m wondering if people really understand its purpose above and beyond the fun of calling out their friends (and enemies).

This challenge is intended to raise money for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease — but to me ALS means “my mom’s disease.” So, let me take you on a journey through ALS so you really know what it feels like in the hopes that you donate rather than, or in addition to, take the “icy way” out of the challenge. I challenge you to read this without crying — and then I call you out to raise awareness on what this craze is really all about.

Powerful Parenting: Anger Management Tips for Children

Sunday, September 7th, 2014

Powerful Parenting: Anger Management Tips for ChildrenAnger occurs when a person of any age is feeling overwhelmed and overpowered. It is our way to say “No, stop it! I don’t like it. It is unfair. I can’t handle it,” and so on. Since children have many rules to learn and follow daily, they are likely to feel challenged and frustrated often. Therefore, parents should not be surprised that children question and challenge boundaries.

Anger is natural. It is about our sense of feeling wronged and attempts at boundary setting. It does not have to be toxic and abusive, but it might escalate to that level. It happens when people don’t know how to express and handle it appropriately. It is important to allow children to express their anger and teach them how to go about it.

It’s the Little Things That Lead to Happiness

Friday, September 5th, 2014

let it go butterfly freeWhat’s the best part of your day?

For me, it’s waking up early and having coffee on my porch as I watch the sun rise. There’s just something calming about this little morning ritual. I never miss it, it’s truly one of the highlights of my day.

Of course there are other things that can brighten your mood during the course of your day that you might not think so much about.

3 Big Reasons to Try Mindfulness

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2014

mindfulness

“The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. When mindfulness embraces those we love, they will bloom like flowers.”

- Thích Nhất Hạnh, Buddhist monk, author and peace activist

What does it feel like when you are talking to someone and they check their text messages? Or you try to tell your husband about something the children did today and he starts opening the mail?

Mindfulness helps us focus our attention on one thing or one person without feeling compelled to follow distractions where our wandering mind wants to take us. That is truly being present.

Is It Guilt or Shame?

Monday, September 1st, 2014

Child punishmentI started this column about guilt — why it stalks me. Why, no matter how hard I try to be a good girl, I can’t get rid of the knot in my stomach that says I’ve been busted, just like I was with a bottle of vodka at band camp in high school. However, upon doing a little research on this topic, I don’t think guilt is so much my problem as shame.

They are related but different.

Money and Relationships: Are You REALLY Fighting About Finances?

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

reasons-have-money-talk-with-partner

Don’t let your money troubles prevent you from having a great relationship.

My husband and I have had countless arguments about money. And we’re not alone; divorce statistics suggest that money is the major cause of most divorces. Suffice it to say that money is a hot topic and one that a lot of relationships struggle with.

However, the source of most of these arguments is not really money. In fact money arguments and stress have three completely different causes.

Single & Surviving as a Woman

Sunday, August 31st, 2014

All By Yourself 10 Ways To Overcome LonelinessBeing 34 and single, the last 10 years have been a time of a lot of emotional stress for me. I had been a very successful student in my younger days. So I used to take praise for granted. In the extended family I was touted as someone that the children should emulate. However, as I grew into my late twenties and remained unmarried, the dynamics with family and friends changed completely. 

Is History Repeating in Your Love Life? Understand the Power of Love Scripts

Friday, August 29th, 2014

The Power of Love ScriptsIs it just a bad break that you have had one troubled relationship after another while your friend has had an amazing long-term marriage?

Is it just an astonishing coincidence that the difficulties you had with your mom you now have with your spouse?

Did you promise yourself that you’d never get involved with another alcoholic then find yourself marrying a workaholic?

What’s going on here? Do we have free will in determining our relationships? Or is our destiny scripted from birth, like a Greek tragedy?

The answer: a bit of both.

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