THIS WEEK IN MOM…Lil kids, BIG MESSES! Oh dear, you only turned your back for a second…

  • Can't wait to clean up!

    Can't wait to clean up!

    The house is beautifully decorated and you're full of holiday cheer. It's also okay to admit that you're also thinking about what follows your upcoming celebrations: Holiday Cleanup. The oodles of wrapping paper you have to pick up, the plethora of boxes you need to get rid of, the ornaments and decorations to be boxed up and put know the drill. My kids always love to help in the decorating process, but the taking down part? Not so interested. So we've come up with a few ways to turn post-holiday chores into a fun family activity:

    -It's not a box! We love the book, Not a Box, by Antoinette Portis because it reminds us that our kids' imaginations are boundless with something as simple as a cardboard box. So save a few of the cardboard boxes you've received from holiday shipments and packaging and see what those boxes become in the eyes of your kids. Robots? Forts? Spaceships? Tugboats? Cars? (And when they're done, don't forget to recycle!)

    -Play wrapping-paper hoops! Scr

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  • THIS WEEK IN M.O.M…We are recapping the Best Kid Videos of 2011! Viral videos were huge this year and it seemed like some of the biggest home videos were of the littlest stars. From talking twins to laughing babies and singing sensations, it's amazing what we can catch our children doing on camera. Happy New Year Moms, and we can't wait to see what you capture on camera in 2012!

    What was your favorite Viral Video this year? Leave us a comment below…

    For more of 2011's biggest Kid Viral Videos, check out these:

    2-year-old recites nursery rhyme Elliott wants to get married!

    Baby Laughs at Books Dropping! Boy tries to rescue a fly!

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  • (Photo by ThinkStock)

    (Photo by ThinkStock)

    This year's best and brightest ideas, innovations and moments of glory ranged from the very noble to the totally ridiculous. And that's just how we liked it. Here's a look back at 2011's bursts of brilliance, both big and small.

    'If you believe in yourself you will know how to ride a bike' boy

    Not only did this kid own two wheels, he mastered the art of inspirational speaking.

    This year's Nobel peace prize

    2011's Nobel prize winners

    Three women, two from Liberia and one from Yemen took top international honors for their work in war-torn regions where women's freedom's are constantly challenged. Their work began long before 2011, but this was the year they were finally recognized globally.

    Dogs who prevent bullying

    Service dogs were integrated into several anti-bullying classroom programs as a way to create a more supportive environment. Teaching kids at a young age how and why to be kind to animals, proved to be influential long-term and fostered a much more positive school culture.

    The Sp

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  • THIS WEEK IN M.O.M…Santa Claus is coming to town! Are your kids ready for the man with the big white beard? It's funny how some little ones can't wait for the jolly guy's arrival, while others are scared of Saint Nick. Watch these holiday home videos of children meeting Santa, and you're sure to relate to the reactions in one way or another. Merry Christmas!

    Do you remember your child's first reaction to meeting Santa Claus? Leave us a comment below and share your story with us.

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  • I freely admit to a certain fondness for the Duggar family. They seem like genuinely nice folks who simply happen to hold different religious views than I do. When I heard that Michelle Duggar had suffered a second trimester miscarriage week before last, I felt terrible for her - both for her tragic loss, and also for the onslaught of meanness that was about to come surging her way.

    As a strongly pro-choice woman and mother myself, I've blogged before about how hypocritical I find it that so many other women who would go to the mat to defend my right NOT to have children are so nasty in their criticisms of another woman's choice to have lots of children. Michelle Duggar's reproductive choices are not the same as mine, and mine likely aren't the same as yours, but when we start defining what's acceptable in terms of how a grown woman should and should not conduct her own reproductive health and life, we're headed down a slippery slope.

    And the same is true when it comes to the publi

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