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  • Zero Tolerance Policies at Daycares Are Getting Pretty RidiculousZero Tolerance Policies at Daycares Are Getting Pretty RidiculousThere is an alarming new trend sweeping the country, and no, I'm not talking about the new "style" trend lamely known as "normcore," I'm talking about kicking preschoolers out of class as a result of zero tolerance policies.

    HELLO? You run a daycare, you should be familiar with the behavior of this particular age group. Basically they are tiny psychopaths who care not for your policies. This is the entire gist of toddlerhood. So I ask you (insert Jerry Seinfeld voice here) what's the deal with zero tolerance policies at daycares? That's like trying to enforce a no fighting policy at hockey games.

    Not gonna happen.

    And yet, foolish daycare owners across this great nation are kicking out toddlers right and left for violating various policies. The latest incident comes to us from Texas where a 3-year-old was kicked out for cursing. Yes, cursing! Probably mimicking her parents, by the way. But yeah, as an NBC affiliate in San Antonio notes, Arianna is banned from Jubilee Child

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  • Study: There Is No Such Thing as Too Much LoveStudy: There Is No Such Thing as Too Much LoveJust minutes before I gave birth to my first born daughter, Harlan, I sat in the delivery room absolutely terrified at how my life was going to change and the type of mother I was going to be.

    I read every single parenting book I could possibly read to try to prepare myself for motherhood. My first couple of months I tried to do what the books told me to do, but I was miserable and Harlan wasn't happy either. It was then that I realized there is really nothing that can truly prepare you for the reality.

    Fast forward two years when my other daughter, Avery, was born and I threw all of my parenting logic from the books away and decided to parent purely based on my motherly instincts. I was exponentially happier and so was Avery. It turns out that all of the fears I had with Harlan that I was going to spoil her too much were completely illogical.

    I'm not alone in my lack of understanding on what to expect with a new baby. But the unpreparedness that parents have could take a

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  • 8 Ways to Get Calcium Besides Drinking Milk

    8 Ways to Get Calcium Besides Drinking Milk8 Ways to Get Calcium Besides Drinking Milk"You don't eat dairy? But how do you get your calcium?!"

    I hear this refrain all the time, along with the old adage, "Drink your milk so you grow up big and strong!" I'm pretty sure all kids are told relentlessly by their parents to gulp down glass after glass of the creamy white stuff. I know I sure drank my fair share of milk growing up. My mom and I easily made a gallon of milk disappear in less than a week between the two of us.

    I eventually stopped chugging milk like there was no tomorrow when I figured out how much it was upsetting my stomach. It wasn't until later down the road that I started learning about some of the health problems dairy is linked to, like joint pain, autoimmune disease, disrupted hormone regulation, and even some cancers. As a dietitian, my recommendation to clients to cut down their milk consumption when they're having stomach issues or other health concerns is often met with protests of "but how will I get the calcium I need?!"

    It's a good

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  • What I Will Teach My Daughter About Dating

    What I Will Teach My Daughter About DatingWhat I Will Teach My Daughter About DatingI've always dreamt of having a daughter. Whenever someone asks, "What do you want to have? A boy or a girl?" I imagine pink hearts and red bows and soft curls flowing down her precious back. Some of my friends are taken aback. One has two boys, and she wouldn't want it any other way. "Raising daughters is hard," she says. But it's a job that I am hoping to have one day.

    Still, it won't be easy. I think about what I will teach my daughter about dating and mating and loving herself and others. I want her to learn from the mistakes of her mother. I want her to know that loving who she is as she is is the first step to loving bliss. And just like this dad says in this video to the boys that will date his daughter:

    "There will be no Daddy issues for your teenage talents to latch upon … "

    Because I am going to chose a partner who is reliable, loving, and wins the Best Father marathon.

    I will teach her how to be selective and not settle because others say she is too picky.

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  • 5 Easy Ways to Upgrade Your Guy’s Wardrobe Without a Fight!

    Shortly after we were married, my wife (strongly) suggested that we overhaul my wardrobe. Apparently, she was not impressed by my closet, which contained about 50+ free t-shirts and a few pairs of jeans that I'd been wearing since high school. I had just started working full-time, so most of the new clothing I acquired was fairly dressy. But then six months ago, I left my job to start a MBA program and quickly learned that my casual wardrobe was still sadly outdated. I told my wife that we needed to make some upgrades. I'm not interested in pushing the limits of fashion - I just want to look put-together and not have to worry about what I'm wearing after I walk out the door. If your boyfriend or husband is still wearing the same items of clothing that he owned in high school, it might be time for a change. Subtle changes and comfort are key, and these 5 fixes make a BIG difference. They'll help him look put-together, without too much effort. Plus, once they're in place, you can point

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  • The Afflictions of Raising a Gifted Child

    The Afflictions of Raising a Gifted ChildThe Afflictions of Raising a Gifted ChildI suppose we've known for a while.

    When your 2 1/2-year-old is reading, which turns into shaping letters with their chubby little hands, which turns into writing by 3 years old … well, you know your kid is more than a little bit smart. And it isn't the most awesome feeling that one might imagine. Well, at first it is, until that day in kindergarten, when you get the finger. Again and again and again.

    You know, the come hither finger from your kid's teacher, accompanied by a slightly cocked head and serious look. That's what happened a couple of weeks ago as I stood by the gate, waiting for the bell to ring, waiting for my boy to come barreling out his classroom door. That first wag of his teacher's finger immediately sent me back to my own years in primary school. And every time thereafter that I've gotten it, I cringe with a tepid expectation. I got that finger an awful lot when I was a kid. We all did, right? Perhaps some of us more than others.

    What I'm beginning to learn

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  • A Letter to My Pre-Parenting Self: You’re Kind of a Jerk

    A Letter to My Pre-Parenting Self: A Letter to My Pre-Parenting Self: Dear Pre-Parenthood Lauren,

    You're kind of a jerk. That may sound a bit harsh, but I can explain, and I'm pretty sure you'll be in agreement with me soon enough.

    Think with me if you will about those times you've silently judged other pregnant moms. Not just any pregnant mom, but the ones who actually dared to go out in public while looking a hot mess in hoodies and yoga pants and hair that hadn't been brushed in who knows how long? Sure, it's not a very cute look, but guess what? That just might be you one day. Maybe not during your first pregnancy when you have little responsibility and a 9 to 5 job to get ready for every day, but the second time around … when you have a super needy toddler attached to your hip? Yeah. That's totally happening … minus the hoodie and yoga pants (only because you don't own them). But you'll definitely look like a hot and tired mess (Makeup? What's that?). Pregnancy with a toddler to chase after is no joke. You'll probably feel pretty

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  • 5 Sneaky Ways to Build Your Savings

    5 Sneaky Ways to Build Your Savings5 Sneaky Ways to Build Your SavingsOne of the most important things to financial peace is having a savings account with funds available for emergencies. But, there are bills to pay and unexpected expenses and kids who eat you out of house and home.

    It's so hard to break the cycle and get to the point of having money to put away. Most experts will tell you to "pay yourself first," meaning add to your savings before you even pay bills or spend any money.

    That sounds like a great idea, in theory. But if money is already tight every month, it is just not going to be realistic. Instead, try to find simple ways to save just a little bit every week.

    Here are 5 sneaky ways to save money you'll barely miss:

    1. The Round-Up: For each purchase you make, round up to the nearest dollar in your check register. You may only be saving pennies at a time, but it gives the checkbook easier math and adds up over time. At the end of each day, week, or month, you can transfer the money to your savings account. Some banks even

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  • 16 Years Later: How I’m Changing My Parenting Strategy as the Mom of a Teen

    16 Years Later: How I'm Changing My Parenting Strategy as the Mom of a Teen16 Years Later: How I'm Changing My Parenting Strategy as the Mom of a TeenI was never one to follow any one particular parenting strategy or style, especially one with a fancy name or rules to follow. When my girls were babies, I felt like the only parenting strategy I needed to master was what I refer to as "recalibration". With each passing stage or phase, I found myself having to assess and reassess how I did things. Just when I thought I hit my stride, the current would change, and I would have to shift my parenting rudder accordingly. With each of my slight modifications, I questioned my ability to be a good parent, wondered if I was doing right by my children, and hoped that how I was parenting was going to help my children grow up to be secure, happy, and healthy people. As I've heard it said, "Parenting is not for the faint of heart."

    Some phases of childhood were easier than others for me to manage. For example, I remember four being easy. Good thing, because three was brutal. I could go on and on in detail about the ups and the downs, with the

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  • A Disability Does Not Define a Person

    A Disability Does Not Define a PersonA Disability Does Not Define a PersonI can't deny that when my kids were born, I succumbed to the typical behavior of a new parent whose child has Down syndrome. For a long time, I thought they were angels - that they would be kids forever and that they would never be capable of acting with malice.

    My attitude about their lives wasn't any different from that of most new parents. We love our angels and can't imagine them ever being anything but the perfect beings they are at birth. On top of that, when a child is born or diagnosed with a disability, the immediate response from those around us is to try to make us believe how blessed we are for receiving such a special being, someone out of this world.

    When a child is diagnosed with autism, society leads us to believe that they are savants or have special powers. When a child is born with Down syndrome, people believe they are sweet, innocent, and wonderful beings. Perhaps this is supposed to be the consolation prize that comes with having a child with special

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