6 Month Phases with Young Children

Young children tend to go through phases that last about 6 months. For 6 months, things seem consistent, kids are mostly agreeable, and there is a natural ease to behavior and play. During this phase, kids enjoy safety, security, playing, and the simple comfort of their everyday routine....more

Being Patient Doesn't Just Mean Waiting

Patience is one of the major lessons of parenthood. Whether we’re waiting for our baby to take her first steps, our toddler to use the potty on a regular basis, or our preschooler to put on his snowsuit “all by himself,” we always seem to be working on patience.Being patient doesn’t just mean waiting. It means being able to enjoy everything else while we’re waiting....more

Sad You're All Done Having Babies? 4 Things to Help

All done having kids? Mourning the fact that you’ll never again have a little baby of your own to cuddle?There are certain milestones – weaning from nursing or bottles, a vasectomy, a health issue, selling the crib, or simply deciding not to have another baby – that may bring up sadness that you are leaving the baby phase....more

10 Ways to Be Present With Young Children

How can we, as parents, make sure our children feel that we are “really there” for them, that we delight in them, and that we love them infinitely?Be present.Here are 10 strategies that can help us be present in our relationships with young children....more

Putting the "Happy" Back in Happy Hour With Young Children

When you have young children (especially more than one), getting dinner ready can be a real challenge. No matter when kids nap or what kind of snack they eat at 3 p.m., they all seem to get voraciously hungry, super tired, and very crabby in that precious window of the day I like to call “Happy Hour.” Although it’s usually much less than an hour, the time before dinner has unique challenges that can use some proactive solutions....more

5 Things To Do When Kids Argue

Your kids are playing nicely while you are cleaning up the breakfast dishes. It is 8 seconds before you hear one of them saying, “No! I want that! It’s mine!” and the other one protesting, “No, mine!”There’s times when it feels like kids can’t seem to play for more than a minute before entering some kind of conflict. Two kids want the same thing. One wants to play trains while the other wants to play blocks. Both want to put in the last puzzle piece.Aside from putting on your striped referee outfit and dangling a huge shiny whistle from your neck, what can you do?...more

Should You Take Your Child With You To the Mall?

One way to balance time with young children is to find the right amount of kid-centered and adult-centered activities. The right mix makes it more likely that kids will feel included and connected to our worlds and we won’t have to play Mr. Potato Head on such a regular basis....more

The Most Important Part of the Nest

It’s common for pregnant parents to go through the “nesting” phase before baby arrives. Quintessential nesting involves scrubbing the fridge shelves, cleaning out closets and drawers, dusting the house from top to bottom, or freezing crock pot dinners. Whether it’s building a crib, painting a nursery, or stocking up on bottles, it’s common for parents to use the time before baby arrives to get their lives in order and make sure that their home is ready and waiting to welcome a new little bundle of joy....more

Marriage Counseling . . . The Ultimate Indulgence

Marriage counseling is the ultimate indulgence.Marriage counseling? On par with a decadent 3-layer chocolate cake, a lavender sea salt pedicure, an Aspen ski vacation, a succulent flame-broiled steak, or a bouquet of aromatic roses?That’s something you may not have heard before.Instead, you might associate marriage counseling with one of these:...more

The Secret to "Vacations" with Young Children

I could share my practical tips for vacations with young children, such as “bring trash bags for your wet clothes after the swimming pool” and “pack a small container of dish soap and a sponge to wash your baby’s bottles in the hotel room.”I could tell you to bring a change of clothes for yourself in the diaper bag in case the baby spits up on you or to play “what’s in the barf bag?” with your toddler on the plane.However, the best tip I have for trips with young children is this:Set intentions, not expectations....more