Laura St. JohnFor the first time in eight years, I can sit back, take a deep breath, and gladly say that all three of my kids are in school. Don't get me wrong -- I love spending time with them -- but I am just not one of those moms who's sobbing in the car after dropping off my preschooler. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) I am walking out that door, with my hand motion of "Yessss!" (...is that terrible?)
Read More: The Language Our Kids Are Learning Without You
Any parent knows, or quickly realizes, that kids cost a lot. My husband and I tossed the idea around whether to invest now into monthly tuition for my youngest, or wait until he is older. Since I often work from my home office, he has gotten in the groove of playing and hanging out while I try to conquer the to-do lists sticky-taped all over my desk. But after much discussion, we agreed it would be good for him, and we considered what we would all get in return.
Read More: Want to Raise a Confident Child? Avoid These Common
Blog Posts by Parentables
Laura St. JohnFor the first time in eight years, I can sit back, take a deep breath, and gladly say that all three of my kids are in school. Don't get me wrong -- I love spending time with them -- but I am just not one of those moms who's sobbing in the car after dropping off my preschooler. (Not that there's anything wrong with that.) I am walking out that door, with my hand motion of "Yessss!" (...is that terrible?)Read More »from Is Preschool Worth the Investment?
- Parentables | Team Mom – Tue, Mar 26, 2013 2:50 PM EDT
Photo: Håkan Dahlström/ Creative CommonsPeople ask me all the time about writing a blog about parenting. Do I enjoy it? Does it pay well? Do I worry about my family's privacy? Kids provide hilarious material on a daily basis, and writing about it feels like a natural extension of telling stories to friends or posting them on Facebook. I believe everyone can write, and most people reading parenting blogs are parents, so there you have it: all the necessary ingredients for a blog...except maybe free time.
The key is figuring out what you want to get out of blogging. Then ask whether or not you'd like to contribute to existing parenting websites or start your own from scratch -- or both! Before taking the plunge, consider these pros and cons:
Read More: Blogs Make Moms HappierThe Benefits of Blogging
1. You are creating a record of moments in the life of your family. Believe it or not, blogging (sometimes) helps me savor family life. Just like IRead More »from Should You Try Mommy Blogging? Weighing the Pros and Cons
- Parentables | Team Mom – Mon, Mar 25, 2013 12:45 PM EDT
Photo Credit: iStockphoto/ThinkstockBecause our youngest is finally sleeping through the night, my husband and I are excited to start going out in the evenings again. Feels like we are coming out of the baby fog a little and are joining society once more. It feels like so long ago that we were able to go out on regular dates and we miss it.Read More »from 3 Babysitter-Friendly Recipes that Are Fun and Healthy
Read More: Schedule a Regular Date Night With Your Sweetie
Although there is quite a bit of planning when it comes to leaving the kids with a sitter, it is truly worth it to get a few precious hours alone with the hubby. I tend to be very particular about what the kids eat and I want to make sure they are well-fed in our absence. I have found a few no-fail recipes that the sitter can make, the kids are guaranteed to eat, and that can be fun all at the same time.
Read More: Fast and Frugal: 10 No-Fuss Weeknight Dinners
Quick, Easy, and Healthy Babysitter-Friendly Dinners
1. Pita Pizzas: Easy to make, healthy, and delicious. This is a kid favorite and is high in calcium and lycopene.
- Parentables | Parenting – Fri, Mar 22, 2013 12:54 PM EDT
Photo credit: DCLTravel question from a "19 Kids and Counting" fan: What were some of your favorite moments from your trip to Japan?Read More »from Michelle Duggar's Take on Her Family's Visit to Japan
Asia is such an amazing place. The best part was really the joy of visiting another country and getting to experience it with the whole family together. That was just an opportunity of a lifetime for our family. We were just thrilled to be there!
Read More: How Michelle Duggar Keeps Her Kids Happy While Traveling
We visited Tokyo and Kyoto, which are two of the largest cities in Japan. And they're absolutely beautiful cities. We were so amazed at the architecture; the buildings are huge and immaculate. My boys kept noticing how many unique styles of architecture they use, too. The shapes of the buildings are incredible.
Read More: Ask Michelle: How the Duggars Pack for a Trip
For the boys, one of their favorite experiences in Japan was the samurai training. They were taught by one of the best teachers in in Japan. Even Jim Bob learned a few skills. As a matter of fact,
Photo by Sarah FernandezLike many three-year-olds, my daughter is sassy. She has her own style and her own opinions. And just in case you were curious, whatever it is that needs to be done, she can do it herself. From getting dressed to making her lunch to climbing the monkey bars, she thinks she can do it all. And while I want her to be confident and believe that the sky is the limit, I know that what appears to be confidence is actually stubbornness, and there is a difference between knowing how to do something and just not doing what you are asked. Lately we've really been butting heads, and finally I found out why.Read More »from Getting to the Root of Behavior Problems
Read More: How Neurofeedback Therapy Helped My Son Learn Self-Control
During a timeout the other day after a fierce display of a bad attitude, I was talking to my daughter and told her that I had really had enough of her behavior and it needed to change. That's when she laid it all out (like a teenager as she was sprawled across her bed giving me a pouty lip). She didn't realize what she was
- Parentables | Parenting – Tue, Mar 19, 2013 1:05 PM EDT
Photo credit: Kyle May / Creative CommonsLast year, I frequently complained about feeling chubby and tired. This was understandable. My responsibilities range from caring fulltime for my 2-year-old, working as a freelance writer, and running my own business. I often looked forward to my nightly glass (or two) of wine to calm my nerves and help rid my head of all the details before going to sleep. Life was exceedingly…normal.Read More »from 5 Inspiring Lessons I Learned by Taking a Break from Drinking
But I didn't want normal. I wanted phenomenal. I wanted more restful sleep. I wanted to get into great physical shape. I wanted to stop numbing out and to start living big. I wanted more energy so that when the day was over, I still had the drive to throw myself headlong into growing my fledgling business. And so a decision was made: to stop drinking wine for a whole year.
My year without alcohol is going slowly, but probably not for the reasons you'd expect. It's because I'm in my second youth; I'm accomplishing so much, and the changes I'm undergoing are so radical that time has slowed
- Parentables | Author Blog Posts – Mon, Mar 18, 2013 3:19 PM EDT
Photo credit: DCLTravel question from a "19 Kids and Counting" fan: How do you keep all of your children entertained and happy on a long plane trip?
One of our favorite travel activities is reading. We always have our reading book bag with all of our favorites in it. The kids usually team up as reading buddies. My readers that are still learning team up with an older child to practice: Johannah, who's 7 years old, teams up with Jennifer, who's a bit younger and still learning her phonics; and Jordan loves to read out loud to the little ones.
In addition to the buddy reading, the younger ones get coloring books with crayons and blank paper so that they can make pictures, cards, notes, and things like that. They have their backpacks packed with those kinds of activities to keep their little hands and heads busy.
Read More: Filling 19 Hungry Bellies on a Road Trip
The older ones also have card games in their packs. We don'tRead More »from How Michelle Duggar Keeps Her Kids Happy While Traveling
Photo: Amanda FreemanI am a lover, but not a hugger. Growing up, my brother, Mike, was the touch-feely sibling who draped his small body over my mother's legs watching television and twirled her hair around his fingers. Though I loved and held on tight to my mom, I also valued my personal space. I rolled my eyes at relatives who rumpled my clothes to embrace me or leaned to close to chat.
My high school and college friends would joke about my stiff hugs hello, and boyfriends complained about my aversion to affection, until we were behind closed (bolted) doors. Instead, I expressed myself through conversation and by writing notes, leaving small gifts and sending books and cards.
Read More: The Economy of Single Parenthood
All of this changed when I became a single mother. Maia was colicky, meaning she screamed whenever I wasn't holding her and sometimes when I was. Her favorite resting position was across my chest, a clumpRead More »from Bringing Home Baby as a Single Mama
Photo: Michelle shares her tips for organizing outfits for 19 (that's 133 pairs of socks!) -- and bringing home a whole lot of dirty laundry.Travel question from a "19 Kids and Counting" fan: What's it like to pack for such a large family?
Packing begins quite a bit earlier for us so that we can get all of the details down. We start weeks in advance. Usually, we try to make sure that we've got enough socks and underclothes for everybody for seven days. It doesn't sound like a big deal, but when you have to have seven pairs of socks for everyone, you multiply that. At home, we wash every day because we just have enough for a few days. Three of my boys are in the same size right now, so that means I've got to have 21 pairs of the same size sock to make it through a trip. For starters, we had to get more socks and undershirts to make sure that everybody had enough of the basics.
And then it's time to start packing! The kids will go down and pick out the clothes that everyone needs for our trip. Sometimes, we'll find out that someone's leggings have holes in them, and someone else's shoes have a big hole in them. WeRead More »from Ask Michelle: How the Duggars Pack for a Trip
- Parentables | Parenting – Fri, Mar 8, 2013 9:04 AM EST
Image: Mark Wilson/Getty ImagesMichelle Obama made headlines this week when during a Google+ Hangout for her Let's Move campaign she said, "I have two young daughters. We never talk about weight." It seems shocking that she would never discuss weight with her children when as the First Lady she has made her platform the importance of getting kids moving and reducing childhood obesity rates. But the first lady is right. If we want to raise kids who are healthy and don't have a weight problem, then we need to stop talking about weight.Read More »from If You Want Your Children to Be Healthy, Don’t Talk to Them About Weight
Read More: Teaching My Kids Healthy Eating Habits (Even Though Mine Always Sucked)
You don't have to look far to find places where our culture emphasizes a person's size over their health. Glance at any fashion magazine, movie or television show and you'll see the thinnest of the thin glorified. But it is virtually impossible to look like that for most people, and being skinny doesn't mean being healthy. On the flip side, there are those who are over eating and as a result they are