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All Ages

Two houses, many challenges

Restructuring a family means change after change. Kids move between two different houses or kids stay put and the parents move. Regardless, each parent will have their own way of doing things, and the kids will need to adjust. Some parents worry that different rules in different homes will hurt the kids. Children can manage a lot and will find a way to cope. The more predictable, the easier it will be for them to adjust. Just because house rules are different doesn’t make them bad. The reality is that at times kids may prefer one house over the other (because the rules are a little more flexible, or because it is consistent and safe.)

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The importance and development of social skills

Humans are wired for social connection. This is especially true for our kids when they start school. Developmentally, most kids become less egocentric and start paying attention to what other peers do, think or feel as early as ages five to six. You may start to hear statements like: “Jessie said that no one likes dinosaurs anymore so I don’t like dinosaurs anymore,” “I’m sad because Ali said I’m rude and she doesn’t want to play with me anymore,” “Mo has ‘Air Jordan’ shoes so I want to have those shoes too.” These statements can be frustrating because it may seem that your child’s peers have a bigger impact on their thoughts and decisions than you do! Just know that this is very developmentally appropriate and that this level of social awareness is a significant milestone in the development of social skills.

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Family weather forecast

I recently heard Dr. Laura Markham say, “parents set the weather in their home.”

It stopped me in my tracks.

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Confessions of a first-time sports parent

I was sitting on the first row of wooden bleachers in the small elementary school gym. It was 9am on a Saturday morning and my fifth-grade daughter, Gabriela (my oldest), was standing on the volleyball court about to play the first game of the season with her school team. It was her first volleyball game ever, and the first competitive athletic event of her life.

I had a knot in my stomach. “Is she going to get her serves over the net?” “Is she going to shank the first ball that comes to her?” “Is she going to feel humiliated when she makes a mistake in front of all of these people?”

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