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Ages & Stages

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Ages & Stages

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National Safe Toy and Gift Month

National Safe Toy and Gift Month

Toy related injuries are all too common. As we moms buy gifts for our kids this holiday season, this is something to keep in mind.
Expectant Mom's Hospital Guide

Expectant Mom's Hospital Guide

Choosing the best hospital or birthing center for the arrival of your baby is an important decision. You will find the Best Hospitals and Birthing Centers in Kansas City with our online guide, complete with maps, detailed descriptions, photos and rich media to help you select the perfect place to welcome your new child.

Archive »Grade School (6-11)

The Merits of Music for Children

The Merits of Music for Children

In today’s society, we are exposed to music almost constantly, whether it’s a movie soundtrack, music in a store, attending a concert, singing in the shower or just listening
Going Overboard: When parents help too much

Going Overboard: When parents help too much

Parents want their child to be successful and supported, and sometimes this results in over-parenting. “There are several ways parents might over-parent without realizing they are actually doing so,” says Kimberly Levitan, Kansas City area clinical social worker, registered play therapist and owner of Playful Solutions LLC.
Encouraging Creativity at Home

Encouraging Creativity at Home

Creativity. You either have it or you don't, right? Wrong. While some assume creativity is something you're born with, it's actually more skill than inborn talent. What's more, it's a skill that parents can help their children develop.
15 Ways for Kids to Volunteer

15 Ways for Kids to Volunteer

We all want the best for our children, so it makes sense that we work hard to surround them with both love and learning opportunities. Often, we take these efforts to staggering heights.

Archive »Preschool (3-5)

8 Things That I’ve Learned as a Mom of Quadruplets

8 Things That I’ve Learned as a Mom of Quadruplets

I get asked fairly frequently what it’s like to raise quadruplets. While I don’t have anything to compare it to, I have learned a few things along the way!
Life Through the Eyes of a Toddler

Life Through the Eyes of a Toddler

Part of being a parent is also being a teacher. Your kids look up to you, mimic you and want to be like you. But have you ever stopped to think about how things must look in their little worlds? We were all kids once, but many of us have forgotten about the curiosity, wonder and giant messes that we embraced at that age. On a day with little patience left in the tank, maybe looking at things from their perspective will help.
Those Mom Moments

Those Mom Moments

In the world of parenthood, many things unite us. Our love for our children, our passion for building their futures and our desire to go to the bathroom without interruption are just a few. Many parents also enjoy talking to other moms and dads about those funny moments our children bring into our lives.
Make No Mean NO

Make No Mean NO

Children hunger to know that their parents say what they mean and mean what they say. And even though they might protest, it is no truer than when you, as a parent, lay down the law and say no.

Archive »Pregnancy

Making Mom Friends

Making Mom Friends

As you feather your nest, don’t forget to give your social life a little love, too. Connecting with a community of women who can relate to the challenges of new motherhood will help you feel more supported and less stressed. Thankfully, Kansas City offers plenty of options.
Pregnant-zzzz: Getting the Sleep You Need When You’re Expecting

Pregnant-zzzz: Getting the Sleep You Need When You’re Expecting

Pregnant women are often told to “sleep now, while you can”—but sleeping during pregnancy is easier said than done. Just ask Emily Waggoner, who was surprised to find herself sleepless while pregnant with her daughter, Sarah, now 3.
Q & A: Prenatal Vitamins

Q & A: Prenatal Vitamins

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to preparing for a baby, but did you know that your body is one of the most crucial elements of that? You’ll probably hear a lot about what you shouldn’t do—no smoking, drinking or Jacuzzis—but what about what you should do? It’s important to eat well and maintain regular physical activity. Just don’t forget about the vitamins.
Take Back Your Pregnancy

Take Back Your Pregnancy

When I was newly pregnant, more than 11 years ago, I was over-the-top giddy—for about a week. Then I went to the doctor. And I bought a few pregnancy books. And I scoured pregnancy websites. A few weeks later, we announced our news to family and friends.

Archive »Pregnancy Slideshow

Making Mom Friends

Making Mom Friends

As you feather your nest, don’t forget to give your social life a little love, too. Connecting with a community of women who can relate to the challenges of new motherhood will help you feel more supported and less stressed. Thankfully, Kansas City offers plenty of options.
Pregnant-zzzz: Getting the Sleep You Need When You’re Expecting

Pregnant-zzzz: Getting the Sleep You Need When You’re Expecting

Pregnant women are often told to “sleep now, while you can”—but sleeping during pregnancy is easier said than done. Just ask Emily Waggoner, who was surprised to find herself sleepless while pregnant with her daughter, Sarah, now 3.
Q & A: Prenatal Vitamins

Q & A: Prenatal Vitamins

There’s a lot to think about when it comes to preparing for a baby, but did you know that your body is one of the most crucial elements of that? You’ll probably hear a lot about what you shouldn’t do—no smoking, drinking or Jacuzzis—but what about what you should do? It’s important to eat well and maintain regular physical activity. Just don’t forget about the vitamins.
Take Back Your Pregnancy

Take Back Your Pregnancy

When I was newly pregnant, more than 11 years ago, I was over-the-top giddy—for about a week. Then I went to the doctor. And I bought a few pregnancy books. And I scoured pregnancy websites. A few weeks later, we announced our news to family and friends.

Archive »Special Needs

Fostering Friendships Between Special Needs Children and Their Peers

Fostering Friendships Between Special Needs Children and Their Peers

When high school junior Dan Walker was crowned homecoming king at Shawnee Mission East this year, a lot of people were cheering.
A Letter to My Special Needs Children

A Letter to My Special Needs Children

You children were born super early through no fault of your own, but it is something that directly influences almost every aspect of your lives. Because of this prematurity, you have certain disadvantages. You have very low functioning immune systems, and that’s why we go to the doctor every other week (not a joke). Elizabeth has pretty severe asthma. Everyone’s speech is delayed, most especially Caleb’s. You all have sensory issues that cause meltdowns at the drop of a hat. Elizabeth and Caleb will each have surgery by the end of the year to correct more preemie issues.
Five Things Children with Autism Wish You Knew

Five Things Children with Autism Wish You Knew

Autism is a neurodevelopmental disorder that is associated with difficulties in social interaction, delayed or impaired verbal and nonverbal communication and restricted, repetitive and stereotyped patterns of behaviors, interests and activities.
Raising Gifted

Raising Gifted

The National Association for Gifted Children (NAGC) says, “Gifted individuals are those who demonstrate outstanding levels of aptitude (defined as an exceptional ability to reason and learn) or competence (documented performance or achievement in top 10 percent or rarer) in one or more domains. Domains include any structured area of activity with its own symbol system (e.g., mathematics, music, language) and/or set of sensorimotor skills (e.g., painting, dance, sports).”

Archive »Infant & Toddler (0-2)

The Not-So-Terrible Twos

The Not-So-Terrible Twos

Recently, my youngest turned two. I’m fully aware that some deem them to be the “terrible two’s” but I’m convinced they’ve got it all wrong. Two is a magical age, with one foot still stuck in babyhood and the other moving forward into childhood. My oldest was already a big brother before he turned two and I regret viewing him as older than he really was. When my second son was two, I then had two toddlers, meaning my attention was divided and I was, consequently, very scatterbrained and tired. Now with our third born, I’ve decided to enjoy it, not wish the hardest parts of it away nor lament the end of a sweet season.
Things That Happen When You Have a Second Child:

Things That Happen When You Have a Second Child:

EVERYTHING becomes an adventure. Getting through an hour-long church service is now a better workout than a P90X “legs and back” video. Between the nursing, shushing, wrangling, entertaining and cleanup, I’m in a full-on sweat by the time we get to communion.
The Name Game: Choosing the Perfect Name for Baby

The Name Game: Choosing the Perfect Name for Baby

Among the many decisions you will make during your pregnancy lies one that will affect your child for his or her entire life. A baby’s name will be with him forever. No pressure, right? Choosing a name for your baby isn’t easy, so here are some tips that will help you to pick the perfect name to last a lifetime.
Hola, Bebe!

Hola, Bebe!

Did you know that in other modernized nations like ours, the norm is raising children bilingual? Children around the world are growing up fluent in two, three or more languages while most American children are raised learning English only. Thankfully, parents and educators throughout the United States have begun to realize the endless benefits of bilingualism, and the trend is growing to expose young children to a second language.

Archive »Teens & Tweens (12-18)

Home Alone: Ready or Not

Home Alone: Ready or Not

Does the idea of leaving your child home alone evoke images from the 1990s movie Home Alone? No need to panic! For many, leaving children home alone is not only an “earned” convenience of sorts for parents, but also a rite of passage for children.
The Upside of Social Media Connected Kids

The Upside of Social Media Connected Kids

As parents we often hear stories about the shadowy side of social media. While problems can crop up, the networking tool can be instrumental in helping kids learn, connect, raise awareness and grow into more mindful communicators.
5 Things Every Parent Should Know

5 Things Every Parent Should Know

Face it, there are A LOT of things we are expected to know as parents, and as you have learned, children don’t come with a manual—but they do come with a steep learning curve!
Teen and Tween Parenting: When Play Groups Transition to Dating, Where Do You Go For Parenting Advice?

Teen and Tween Parenting: When Play Groups Transition to Dating, Where Do You Go For Parenting Advice?

As your children move into the teenage years, there will come a time when they no longer want you posting their photo on Facebook every day or asking your “mom friends” for advice on how to deal with acne or dating failures. That leaves some parents struggling with how to get parenting guidance at the very moment they are entering uncharted territory and needing advice on how to survive the teenage years.
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Archive » Blogs

The Not-So-Terrible Twos

The Not-So-Terrible Twos

Recently, my youngest turned two. I’m fully aware that some deem them to be the “terrible two’s” but I’m convinced they’ve got it all wrong. Two is a magical age, with one foot still stuck in babyhood and the other moving forward into childhood. My oldest was already a big brother before he turned two and I regret viewing him as older than he really was. When my second son was two, I then had two toddlers, meaning my attention was divided and I was, consequently, very scatterbrained and tired. Now with our third born, I’ve decided to enjoy it, not wish the hardest parts of it away nor lament the end of a sweet season.
Five Delicious Ways to Enjoy S’Mores in Kansas City

Five Delicious Ways to Enjoy S’Mores in Kansas City

Enjoy a unique take on the summer classic at one of these restaurants, where they’ve upped the ante and improved the s’more with their own personal touch!
5 Books from Your Childhood Worth a Reread

5 Books from Your Childhood Worth a Reread

As demonstrated by the current popularity of children’s and young adult books from Harry Potter to The Hunger Games, great writing knows no age boundaries. It isn’t surprising that many adult readers love devouring books geared toward a younger audience. After all, these titles often offer fast-paced stories along with a healthy dose of nostalgia.
Kansas City: A Bibliophile’s Paradise

Kansas City: A Bibliophile’s Paradise

From locally owned and operated bookstores to a fantastic series of library systems, Kansas City is home to both well-established places and exciting events that encourage its citizens to fall in love with reading themselves. But don’t take my word for it. Check out these local gems for yourself!
Kansas City Farmers Market Guide

Kansas City Farmers Market Guide

Kansas City is home to more than 30 farmers markets. They range from small markets selling exclusively organic produce to the City Market with more than 140 local vendors. You can purchase fruits, vegetables, plants, herbs, homemade soaps, baked goods and even live animals. If you are new to the world of the farmers market, this simple guide will get you started!
10 Things You Should Do for Yourself in 2015

10 Things You Should Do for Yourself in 2015

If I could focus on one thing for this new year, it’d be the art of learning to take care of myself. Parents, but especially mothers, tend to deprioritize themselves. Picture a totem pole and try to visualize where you’d rank yourself on it. I bet you’d be somewhere closer to the bottom, right? With kids, spouse, extended family and friends higher up? Even the family pet might rank higher, and that’s an indicator something clearly has gone awry.
Creative Gender Neutral Baby Shower Themes

Creative Gender Neutral Baby Shower Themes

Baby shower planning. There are a million different themes, color palettes, and menu items all at your disposal. But why is it when Baby’s gender is a surprise, the theme always ends up being yellow & green? Here are a few unique themes to push past the standard fare.
Long-Distance Holiday

Long-Distance Holiday

Whether you just moved out of state (or country) or have lived a long distance from family for years, staying in touch over the holidays each year can prove to be tough. However, when you and your children take time to get creative, staying connected can be a lot of fun for everyone in the family!
Christmas Shopping

Christmas Shopping

“This year, I’m going to trust you to get Mom something all by yourself. Choose something she will like. I don’t even want to see it ’til Mom unwraps it on Christmas morning. Do you understand?”
Sacred Traditions

Sacred Traditions

Traditions. They’re meant to usher us into a season of comfort and joy, peace and goodwill, but often leave us feeling more harried than merry. Take, for instance, the daily ritual of an Elf-on-the-Shelf’s soaking in marshmallow bubble baths, T.P.-ing the tree and plunging down zip lines over the breakfast table. For such tiny creatures, these sly imps demand an inordinately large amount of my time and sanity, commodities already in short supply over the holidays. Trying to conjure up a Norman Rockwell Christmas is not only exhausting, it’s a series of “Pinterest-fails” waiting to happen.
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