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Cox Communications Commitment to Connected Independence

Posted by on Jun 1, 2018 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech | 0 comments

 Sponsored As my parents have begun to age, I have seen it become harder and harder for them to stay connected and as active as they once were. I recently had the opportunity of visiting a Cox Communications “Smart Home” that was set-up with everything that aging parents need to enjoy connected independence. Did you know that according to the AARP, research indicates almost 90% of adults over the age of 65 want to stay in their current home and community as they age? That makes it more critical than ever for them to take advantage of the advanced technology available that can be powered by Cox Communications high-speed internet. One feature that I learned about when visiting the Cox “Smart Home” was the ability for aging adults to have access to telemedicine. They can use devices to monitor...

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Five Ways to Prevent Clogged Drains

Posted by on Jan 10, 2018 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored With a house full of teenagers, we were always faced with the issue of clogged drains. I’ve tried everything from using a bent wire hanger to salt/baking soda, but there is only one thing that I have found to tackle clogged drains, and that is Roto-Rooter. It has been almost a year since using the Roto-Rooter product in our household, and we have noticed a big difference in our plumbing. I have noticed that I don’t have to use the product as often and that our sinks drain faster. I have also been taking these simple steps to help prevent clogged drains in our home. What can you do? One big thing that has helped with clogged shower drains is to use a hair screen on top of the shower drain. Ever since we started using this, I...

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Mercury Insurance Drive Safe Challenge

Posted by on Dec 15, 2017 in Autos, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored This past weekend my son Andrew and I attended the Mercury Insurance Drive Safe Challenge. Mercury Insurance in partner with The Anaheim Ducks and the California Highway Patrol designed this course specifically for new drivers and teenagers who have obtained their learners permit or will be doing so within a week or so after attending this informative event. With my son getting his permit this month, I knew that it was the perfect time to take him to experience this day of driver education. When we arrived at the Honda Center, we had the opportunity to check out a CHP Patrol Car and a CHP motorcycle. These vehicles are impressive to take a look at especially when the officers that drive them are there to tell you how fast they go and how they use the vehicles. We...

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Helping Kids Fight the Fear of Monsters

Posted by on Nov 29, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored One of the hardest parts of parenting is helping children to overcome the fears of monsters in their room. For almost his entire life, my younger son has had a fear of my master bathroom closet, thinking that a ‘grey monster’ lives in the darkness of all our clothes. Over the years, I have tried everything to help him overcome the fear, and nothing has seemed to work. All of my friends and family had told me that it was something that he would outgrow, but unfortunately, he is almost 11 years old, and will still not go anywhere near our closet because of the fear of that terrifying monster. When talking with my of my friends about the subject over lunch, she advised me that she had recently learned about The Sweet Dream Box that is helping...

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Home Maintenance and Repair Tips

Posted by on Oct 19, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored Do you ever feel like there is always something needing to be repaired in your home? You’re not alone! We all face the same challenge of needing to spend time on the weekends fixing a leaky faucet or touching up paint. Having a handyman can be costly for families on a budget, and it is more cost effective to do the home repairs yourself. One of the most costly home repairs is to have a plumber come and fix clogged pipes. For years, our family would hire a plumber to come out every time that we would have a clogged pipe, and with having three children, it would be on a regular basis, causing a huge dent in our family budget. While having lunch with one of my friends, I was complaining about how much money we were...

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We Almost Lost our Baby to RSV

Posted by on Oct 15, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, New Baby | 0 comments

 This post was sponsored as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own. After my third son was born, I thought that I was a pro at being a mom. I knew how to manage fevers, colic, and every possible hiccup that I could face when caring for a newborn. When my son was three months old, he came down with a terrible fever. He wasn’t nursing and had a terrible cough. Within 24 hours we were in the emergency room with him on oxygen. I didn’t know what was happening to my precious baby as the doctors worked frantically to care for him. That night, I sat by his crib in the hospital and didn’t know if he would survive the night. He had contracted RSV. I had...

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Kindness is Captivating

Posted by on Sep 22, 2017 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  We all need more examples of kindness in the world, and in my work as a school counselor, I attempt to teach children to be kind because it’s the right thing to do. If children are only kind when they know someone is watching or because they hope to be recognized for their kindness we’re missing the mark. My message to students is “Be kind, especially when it’s hard.” It’s easy to be nice when others treat us well or when we get exactly what we want. However, my hope is that children will learn to pause and make good choices even when it’s not easy. That’s where we come in, because children must be taught how to do this. Ironically, this is as much a challenge for adults as it is for kids. I teach our students...

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Moms Helping Moms to Encourage Healthy Oral Hygiene

Posted by on Jul 20, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 This post and party were sponsored by ACT Kids Toothpaste but all thoughts and opinions are my own. Once Spring Break ended and the kids went back to school, I invited some of my friends to come over for a morning full of fun and friends. Whenever I get together with my girlfriends, we always end up talking about the same thing – our parenting struggles. One of the biggest struggles that most of my friends have is with teaching their children to have good oral hygiene. According to a recent survey, more than half of moms (56%) say they struggle with getting their kid(s) to brush their teeth every day and even more (69%) say they wish getting their kid(s) to brush their teeth was easier. In fact, 52% of moms say they would give up their “me...

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DIY Plumbing Fixes Made Simple

Posted by on Jul 10, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored There is nothing worse than finally getting a few minutes without the kids to take a nice and relaxing shower. Then it happens, the shower pan slowly starts backing up, and you find yourself rapidly rinsing the soap out of your hair so you can get out of the shower before the shower pan overflows into your bathroom. It is something that happens to me way too often. In the past, when this would happen, I would run downstairs soaking wet, wrapped in my towel to get the toilet plunger to attempt to unclog the drain. I would then start plunging the drain in the shower getting splashed with black grossness that would begin to spray up from the drain. These were the worst memories that I had as a homeowner until discovering Roto-Rooter products. Now, when I...

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Talking to Your Children about Bullying + Giveaway

Posted by on Jun 27, 2017 in Family, Giveaways, Hot Topics, Parenting | 13 comments

 We partnered with JIMMY Patterson Books to share this post Bullying is a major issue that children of this generation face. While bullying has always been happening in schools, it has moved beyond the playground to online. Teens and tweens are feeling that cyberbullying is a big threat. According to a survey done by ReportLinker, Seven out of ten kids said that they are concerned, with 37% being very concerned. Having two teenagers in my household, bullying and cyberbullying is something that we continue to have an open discussion about. When a girl in my daughters class was involved in a sexting scandal last year, my daughter felt comfortable coming to me and talking about it. I was able to help guide her through what to do and not to do and give her tips on how she could...

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What Parents Need to Know about Eating Disorders and Children

Posted by on Jun 12, 2017 in Family, Fitness, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored As a mother of a teenaged daughter, I feel it is important to be aware of any possible signs of an eating disorder. We live in a time where young girls feel an extreme amount of pressure to look a certain way, and can easily develop body image issues which can lead to eating disorders. Over the past year, I have been aggressively working on weight loss and changing my eating habits to be healthier. I have started to get concerned that maybe I have been spending too much time talking about my weight loss journey around my daughter, and wanted to ensure that my actions do not impact her and cause body image issues. Last week, I talked with Dr. Mery Taylor at CHOC Children’s Hospital about what is an eating disorder, signs that parents like myself...

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Being Prepared to Protect Your Family During Fire Season

Posted by on Jun 1, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech | 0 comments

 Sponsored There is nothing scarier than not being able to get in contact with a loved one during an emergency. Earlier this week, my younger son and husband were at an evening event at my son’s elementary school, when a fire broke out in the brush just a few short yards away from the school. Everyone stayed calm, the firefighters raced to the scene and were successfully able to put the fire out within just a few minutes – saving the surrounding homes and my son’s school. Thankfully, my husband had Verizon service and was able to immediately contact me on his cellphone to let me know that everyone was alright before I was to see it unfold on social media. Thank you #OCFA for the quick response and great teamwork! #AlisoViejo #OCSD @OCFA_PIO @alisoviejocity @LtMacPherson pic.twitter.com/w1x90f79be — AV...

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Time to Unplug

Posted by on May 30, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech | 0 comments

  The infiltration of technology into our daily lives offers both opportunities and challenges for today’s parents. We raise children who have access to vast amounts of information and interface with others around the world without giving it a second thought. Questions can be answered in an instant, commercials can be bypassed so we don’t have to delay the gratification of knowing how shows end, and long gone are the days of waiting for snail mail to receive information from those we love. We have the ability to share our lives in live time and to create carefully calculated virtual identities. These advances are amazing, and yet there are moments when the disadvantages seem glaring. For example, I was recently out to dinner with my family. A father and his daughter walked into the restaurant and were seated adjacent...

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How to Enjoy Life with Seasonal Allergies

Posted by on May 8, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 I am participating in Influence Central’s Ambassador program on behalf of Claritin®. This program is paid for by the Makers of Claritin® and I have received compensation for my participation. All opinions expressed are my own. Once the big rains in Southern California stopped, the super bloom started, and my child’s seasonal allergies started to blossom. The sneezing, started to kick-in making it hard for my children to enjoy daily outdoor activities. Just last week, I took my white car to get a carwash, and within a few minutes of driving on the road, it was completely covered with yellow dust (aka pollen). The best thing that a parent can do to help children with seasonal allergies is to manage them, and one tool that I have been using for the past year to manage my children’s seasonal allergies...

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Five Clever Tips to Simplify Making School Lunches

Posted by on Apr 6, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Shopping | 0 comments

  We are down to the last couple of months of the school year, and I know that I am not alone when it comes to school lunch burn-out. I started the year making the kids creative bento box lunches, and now I find myself digging through my refrigerator every morning trying to find everything I need to pack my kids a well-balanced lunch. When my kiddo came home from school one day asking me if he could buy school lunch, I knew it was time to get out of my lunch packing rut and find some ways to simplify making my kids healthy and tasty school lunches. Making lunches the night before I know that we are all tired at the end of a long day chasing after toddlers or driving our kids all around town and just...

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Is Your Teens Hair Clogging Your Drain?

Posted by on Apr 6, 2017 in Beauty, Family, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored My teenage daughter has the most beautiful long hair. Her hair has sunkissed highlights, and her long locks go all the way down to her hips. The only problem with having a teenager with long hair is the beating it puts on your household drains. At least once a week, our shower drain will back-up from the hair she loses in the shower, and our bathroom sink as well. We have tried everything from drain traps to natural remedies, and nothing has seemed to work. While the easy solution is to have a teenager clean their hair out of the shower or sink after getting ready in the morning, let’s be honest, that’s just not a reality. After trying every single natural remedy, I finally decided to turn to a commercial product to help solve our household problem...

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Save a Life with Bayer Aspirin

Posted by on Mar 7, 2017 in Education, Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 I am participating in an Ambassador program on behalf of Influence Central and hosted by the makers of Bayer® Aspirin. I have received compensation to thank me for my participation. All opinions expressed are my own. One night when I was a teenager, my father went out to walk the dog along the beach. The minute that he walked into the house, I immediately knew that something was wrong. He calmly went up to my mother and said the words that no child ever wants to hear their parent say, “I think I am having a heart attack.” Since my grandma had a history of heart-related issues, my mom knew what to do and got him a Bayer aspirin to chew on while she rushed him to the emergency room. Looking back, she should have called 911, but we...

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Getting Help Managing Child Mental Health Issues

Posted by on Mar 3, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

 Sponsored I haven’t gotten this personal on our blog in many years. I think it’s time. There is nothing worse for a parent than to see their child under severe stress. Over the past couple of years, I have watched my younger son struggle in school, and seen the educational and social pressures cause him severe stress. The warning signs started small and then quickly escalated to the point that we were worried, and didn’t know what to do to help our child. Learning has never been easy for our youngest son. He was born premature and suffered from many major health issues since birth. As parents, we felt relieved that a learning disability was the biggest side effect of the trauma he endured during pregnancy and birth, but for a 10-year-old boy – it can feel like the...

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Finally! GMO-Free Affordable ‘Natural’ Yogurt

Posted by on Mar 2, 2017 in Family, Green Living, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored I make my kids a fresh yogurt smoothie every morning. It is a great way jump start their day with a glass full of nutrition. The best part about giving the kids morning smoothies is that I can sneak in things that they normally wouldn’t eat like kale, flax seeds, Goji berries, Chia seeds, and more. The only troubling issue that I have found with making their smoothies is finding a yogurt to add that is GMO-Free and uses natural ingredients, until now. I squealed with delight when I learned that Dannon – yes a major corporation has made a commitment to their customers by making a product that is GMO-Free and made with more natural ingredients. The best part is that the product is still priced affordable to fit into most family budgets at $0.55 a cup....

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Stand-up for the Right to Have Access to More Organic in the US

Posted by on Feb 24, 2017 in Family, Green Living, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored One of my most important jobs as a mother is to ensure the food I am feeding my children is the highest quality available. I try to incorporate as many organic foods into our family diet and help to supplement the cost of purchasing organic for a family of five by growing backyard summer produce and doing a majority of my grocery shopping at local farmer’s markets. I am sure that parents like myself agree that we need more organic food available – not less and that we need the GRO Organic Check-Off program to help strengthen and support organic farmers in our community. Now, I am not one to ever be political, but when it comes to having access to organic foods to feed my children, I am going to stand-up and fight for it. I spend...

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Storymakery: a Perfect Daddy/Daughter Night Out

Posted by on Feb 9, 2017 in Education, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

 We visited as a guest of the venue One of the activities my wife and I like to do from time to time is spend an evening with each child one on one.  With that in mind on Friday night, my daughter and I had a planned activity. Trying to figure out an activity that is fun, educational and unique was my focus for the week prior to our night out. Fortunately for me, I was given an opportunity to visit Storymakery at Irvine Spectrum. While I was not fully familiar with the store, the evening’s plan was very intriguing.The activity would start by local author, Jeannie Fung reading her book (Hawaii) and then answering some questions. After that, the kids would each write their own stories and get it published. I thought that ending the evening with a...

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Game Plan for Healthy Kids Mind, Body & Soul

Posted by on Feb 6, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 This post was sponsored by Boys & Girls Clubs of America as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own As parents, we all know how important it is to raise healthy children. We are all working hard to give our kids the best lifestyle, nutrition, and care. A significant factor in helping to raise healthy children is to take advantage of different parenting resources that are available like the Boys & Girls Clubs of America’s Triple Play wellness guide. What is the Boys & Girls Clubs of America Triple Play? It is a valuable resource for parents that is put together with the support of The Coca-Cola Company and the Anthem Blue Cross Foundation to give parents the tools needed to raise children with a healthy mind, body,...

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Tips for Invisalign Teen Hygiene

Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in Family, Giving Back, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 5 comments

  “I am a member of the Invisalign Mom Advisory Board and my son has received complimentary treatment.” Ever since my son started high school, he has been struggling with his Invisalign hygiene. He leaves early in the morning, comes home late at night, and then dives into a homework before falling asleep. I’ve noticed that his trays have started to yellow, and even have a little bit of an unpleasant scent. Once I noticed this, I talked to his orthodontist about how he can take better care of his Invisalign trays. Set Reminders on your teenager’s cell phone I set reminders on my son’s cellphone to remind him to take out his Invisalign trays and thoroughly brush his teeth and trays three times a day. Since he leaves for school at 6 am, this has been extremely helpful...

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Tips for Keeping Your Family Healthy During Cold and Flu Season

Posted by on Jan 30, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored Cold and Flu season are upon us, and while the flu hasn’t quite hit Orange County yet, there is still the potential of it coming to our community, and protecting your family from serious illness is vital. Some people think that mild cold symptoms are the flu, but the flu is much more serious. We talked with Doctor Wendy Coling at Kaiser Permanente Orange County about how your family can prevent getting the flu and got these great tips for keeping your family healthy during the cold and flu season. What is the best way to prevent getting the flu? The best way to prevent getting the flu is getting the flu vaccine. I recommend it for everyone unless you have a specific type of medical condition. Some of the guidelines have changed over the past year regarding...

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I Lost My Sister To Ovarian Cancer

Posted by on Jan 30, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

  Let me start by telling you about my relationship with my sister. We did not grow up together like most sisters. We share the same dad and he was not a big part of either of our lives growing up. However, we did get to spend some time together as children. I remember my sister always wanting to take me everywhere with her and I LOVED it. I was so excited to hang out with the big kids (we had a 7 year age difference) and get to be “cool”. My mom would tell me all the time how Cindy loved to take care of me when I was a baby and just loved her baby sister. As we both got older, we lost contact. My mom and dad were no longer together and my sister moved out...

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Importance of Children’s Eye Health

Posted by on Jan 19, 2017 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored This past summer, my husband and youngest son both underwent two major eye surgeries. My husband had a corneal transplant, and my son had surgery to correct his strabismus. Since my husband’s family has a history of eye diseases, I have had a strong focus on preventative eye health care ever since my children were born. We take our children every year for wellness checks and twice a year to the dentist, but many parents overlook the importance of also having your child’s vision checked. Ever since learning about Kaiser Permanente health care, the one thing that I love about the insurance company is their focus on preventative care, and that everything is under one roof. When parents are bringing their children in for their well visit, they can also have their children’s vision checked all at the...

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Recycling Tips for Families in the New Year

Posted by on Jan 10, 2017 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sample received/affiliate Ever since my youngest son started at a Waldorf School, he has been learning more and more about how he can better care for our environment. He has been sharing with our family everything he is learning at school, and we have been making a conscious effort to become a more “green family.” One of the biggest impacts families can make on caring for our environment is to recycle. I’ll be honest that over the past couple of years our family has not been the best at recycling. The hardest part is that we could never seem to find a recycling system for our household that did not take up a lot of room and was efficient. With one of our family New Year’s resolutions is to become a more eco-friendly household, I began searching for a...

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Navigating Health Insurance Options

Posted by on Dec 16, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored It is currently health insurance open enrollment time, which is a critical time for many families. When it comes to making insurance decisions, it can be confusing and hard to navigate for many people, but everyone has the same goal of finding an insurance company that will take the best care of your family. We talked with the area director of account management at Kaiser Permanente about what families need to know when selecting an insurance company. When I got on the phone to talk with John Gustafson, area director of account management at Kaiser Permanente Orange County about insurance options he had mentioned how he had come down with the flu earlier in the week. He shared with me how he was able to have a telephone appointment with his Kaiser doctor who phoned in his prescriptions,...

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Let’s Talk about Adolescent Depression

Posted by on Dec 1, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored More than 150,000 children in Orange County suffer from a mental health condition. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in young people ages 10-24. These are staggering statistics. Depression in the adolescent years happens more than many realize. When it impacts a family, many feel that they are the only ones, and alone. CHOC Children’s acknowledges that there are many adolescents in our community that are in need of help, and they are in the process of expanding their child mental health services by building a Children’s Mental Health Impatient Center to provide care for children ages 3 to 18. We talked with Dr. Nadia Torres-Eaton, a licensed psychologist who is board certified in clinical psychology, about what parents can do when faced with a child who is suffering from depression. A Silent topic If mental...

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Fighting the Fall Flu Bugs with Providence Express Care at Home

Posted by on Oct 26, 2016 in Education, Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored I have found this year to be one of the hardest as a mom. I have three children in three different schools with three different after school activities. Since school started in September, I have been living in my car, spending all day driving my kids around town. If I’m not shuffling the kids from activity to activity, I am stopping at various coffee shops to try and get my work done. Winter coming soon means the start of colds and flus. Normally, I would be fearful of my kids coming down with a cold or flu this year because I just don’t have a free moment in my schedule to take them to a doctor’s appointment to get a prescription. Over the summer, I learned about a great online tool for parents called Providence Express Care Virtual....

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What Parents Need to Know about Sunscreen

Posted by on Oct 24, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  We all know how important sunscreen is for protecting our families, especially in sunny Southern California. But with the overwhelming number of brands and SPFs on the market, making a decision on what to purchase can be complicated. Sunscreen labels are packed with information, but not all of it is crystal clear to the average consumer. What does SPF stand for? What are “mineral” vs. “chemical” sunscreens? What are UVA and UVB rays? There are significant differences between formulas and the way they protect your family from those harmful rays. The sun is incredible, however, it is important to be aware of the damage it can do to our bodies, and what kind of products are best for preventing burns. I don’t want to discourage anyone from spending time outdoors, but I do want to emphasize how harmful...

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Teach Your Kids to Beat the Body Image Blues

Posted by on Oct 5, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Several months ago my husband and I started using a new babysitter. She’s a high school cheerleader, and both of my children were very excited to spend time with this sophisticated “big girl.” We were excited that they eagerly anticipated her arrival so we could enjoy our date night guilt free. Shortly after the babysitter arrived my daughter commented, “Mommy you’re thicker than ____.” The comment caught me off guard, because I rarely make comments about my appearance. In our family we talk regularly about eating a well-balanced diet, getting exercise, and living a healthy lifestyle but we don’t focus on weight. Thankfully, I have a good sense of humor so the comment was more funny than bothersome. I responded by saying something like, “That’s true. We all have different body types and mommy’s is curvier than _____’s.”...

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Three Reasons to Try Target CVS Pharmacy

Posted by on Sep 28, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

 I’m proud to be working with CVS Pharmacy on the CVS Pharmacy Difference Campaign. All opinions expressed are my own, and all product claims or program details shared should be verified at CVS.com or with the appropriate manufacturers. Over the years, Target has continued to grow to be one of the top shopping destinations for busy families. They have begun selling clothes designed by award winning designers, upgraded their snack bars into Starbucks and recently transformed their pharmacies into CVS Pharmacy. CVS Pharmacy has always been a favorite pharmacy in Southern California, and now that customers can utilize their services while shopping at Target, they have become the go-to pharmacy for families in our community. One reason to try a new Target CVS Pharmacy location is that families don’t have to change anything. All of your regular CVS prescription...

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5 Questions a Student Should Ask the Teacher

Posted by on Sep 22, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Some students love to ask questions in class while others prefer to keep quiet. Although it can be intimidating for kids to raise their hands and ask the teacher pertinent questions, they can learn so much valuable information by speaking up from time to time. Whether a student is curious about the specifics of a topic or needs clarification on homework it’s highly beneficial for them to learn how to ask their teacher certain types of questions. Assignment clarification Many young students go home to get started on an important assignment only to find out that they didn’t quite understand the scope of work. This can be very frustrating because they don’t know how to get started or, perhaps they do a great job on their homework but end up handing in something different than what the teacher...

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My Journey to Leadership with Girl Scouts of Orange County

Posted by on Sep 22, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

 My journey as a Girl Scout began as a first grade Daisy. I loved my troop and the friendships I made with my Girl Scout sisters. I’ve continued as Girl Scout into high school because this inspiring organization has shown me the power I have to lead and make a positive difference in the world by helping others. Challenging myself with difficult tasks has been the most rewarding part of my Girl Scout experience. I take things step by step and learn along the way. Even when I fail, Girl Scouts encourages me try again, get better, and achieve my goal. Taking chances and experiencing failure through opportunities with Girl Scouts help girls become stronger challenge-seekers.
Linking Leadership to Academic Success: The Girl Scout Difference, Girl Scout Research Institute I’ve developed the confidence to try so many things that I...

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Mommy & Me Decor: Transforming Your Child’s Room Together

Posted by on Sep 12, 2016 in Family, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

 As a busy mom, I know time is precious. You want to do all the good things, but there are only 24 hours each day. Thank goodness for time savers! When decorating my baby’s nursery, I realized vinyl wall decals could jazz up boring walls without draining time. That discovery began my passion and business: Just Sayin’ Vinyl, vinyl wall decals for home and kids. Devoting my career to helping families personalize wall space made me realize something big. Transforming your child’s room can be a great activity to do along with your child to promote creativity, encourage independent thought, and make memories. Here are four ideas to get you started! 1. Choose Vinyl Wall Decals Together My favorite way to personalize a room! Together, you and your little one can pick a message that speaks to you and...

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Make the Switch for Soft and Strong Tushie Tissue

Posted by on Sep 12, 2016 in Deals, Family, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by Charmin as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.” Finding high-quality products at the lowest possible price is important to most families like ours. One household item that I never want to sacrifice quality is our toilet paper. The only problem is that in a household with three young children causing us to through so many rolls a week, we are forced to purchase a lower priced toilet paper than we would like. Our family has been using Angel Soft® for many years because of its reputation for softness and having an affordable price point until recently. Every back-to-school season, my husband and I, work on our family budget and discuss ways our family can save. I recently learned that the Charmin® Essentials Soft and Charmin® Essentials Strong toilet paper is now available...

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CVS Health Comes to Target

Posted by on Aug 31, 2016 in Education, Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 I’m proud to be working with CVS Pharmacy on the CVS Pharmacy Difference Campaign. All opinions expressed are my own, and all product claims or program details shared should be verified at CVS.com or with the appropriate manufacturers. Target is quickly becoming a one-stop place for family shopping needs. From Starbucks to optical to prescriptions, it has become one of my favorite places to go shopping. As a CVS customer, when I heard the news that all Target pharmacies were converting to CVS Health Pharmacies, I was over the moon with excitement – one less errand I have to run each week. Now I can do all of my Target shopping, and pick up my prescriptions all in one place. The best part is that as a CVS customer, I don’t have to do anything to switch my prescriptions...

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Preserving Your Kid’s Photos with Google Photos

Posted by on Aug 19, 2016 in Family, Hot Topics, Tech | 0 comments

 Sponsored Ever since switching from an iPhone to a Droid, I have been struggling with how to preserve my cell phone images. Since I am a busy mom, I am always using my cellphone to capture all my favorite memories with my children, and I don’t want to risk losing them in the event of something happening to my cell phone. Like many busy moms, I, of course, put off figuring how to backup my photos until I received a notification on my Samsung Galaxy S7 that there was not any more room to take more photos. I started doing my research and learned that all of my photos were already backed-up to the Verizon Cloud along with my contacts, videos, and music. I was so grateful in knowing that Verizon thinks of everything, including backing up my photos...

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Building Bright Futures in YMCA Afterschool Care

Posted by on Aug 19, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored Are you looking for childcare options for your children this fall? The YMCA before and afterschool care provides opportunity for your child to learn, grow, and thrive as they make their way from K-5th grade. They provide daily physical and educational activities like homework support, sports, arts, and technology that allow students to engage in the learning process and have fun with friends at the same time! With over fifty locations on school campuses throughout Orange County, the YMCA is a convenient and affordable choice for your family. Kids can explore interests, learn new skills, and develop cool hobbies with their club curriculum. YMCA Clubs include: Cooking Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Engineering Photography Meteorology Arts and More Secure your child’s spot for Fall by enrolling now. Registration fee waived before September 15th! Registration and location info at...

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The Importance of Eye Exams for Kids

Posted by on Aug 17, 2016 in Education, Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by Think About Your Eyes as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. All thoughts and opinions are completely my own.” One of the hardest things that I have faced as a parent is having a child with a learning disability. School has never been easy for my younger son, and we have done everything in our power to get him as much help as possible, but nothing has seemed to help. He has been wearing glasses since the age of two because of a lazy eye. The opthamologist that has been treating him over the years was using glasses to help correct the issue. It wasn’t until taking him to a cornea specialist to be screened for a genetic eye disease that my husband and his father suffers from that we learned that...

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How a2 Milk® Has Changed Our Lives

Posted by on Jul 25, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by a2 Milk® as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.” It has been a couple of months since my family has switched from traditional milk to a2 Milk® and we have seen a significant different in the way we feel. My son, who experiences sensitivities to regular milk, now happily enjoys a glass of a2 Milk® along with his brother and sister at dinner every night, and does not have the discomfort he once had while drinking traditional milk. a2 Milk® has truly changed our lives. I was always struggling with ways to incorporate calcium into my son’s diet due to his food allergies and milk sensitivity, and since we have been using a2 Milk® those concerns have disappeared. Imagine not being able to have...

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Helping Pets Beat the Summer Heat

Posted by on Jul 12, 2016 in Family, Giveaways, Hot Topics, Parenting | 3 comments

 “This blog post is part of a paid Megan Media and #PetcoGrooming blogging program. The opinions and ideas expressed here are my own.” Our kids love taking care of our golden retriever, Daisy. They get up early every morning to take her outside, give her fresh water, and fill her bowl with food. My kids’ favorite thing to do with Daisy is to give her a weekly bath. Since my kids have always been the ones to give her a bath, I have never tried taking her to a groomer until recently. Since it has been so hot this summer, I wanted to take her to a groomer that would care of her just like us, and cut her hair short so she can have some relief from the summer heat. I let the kids skip their weekly bath...

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Local News Matters in Orange County

Posted by on Jul 11, 2016 in Events, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of OC Register & The Press-Enterprise. The opinions and text are all mine. While we pride ourselves on being the largest online resource for families to find the best things to do with their children in Orange County, we are not a place for families to keep up with breaking news. From local shark sightings to the presidential race, the Orange County Register (OC Register) is the place for families to get breaking news because local news matters. The OC Register shares stories about the people that make our community great. From chef features and restaurant closures by The Fast Food Maven to interactive theme park videos by Mark Eades, the OC Register has a diverse team of journalists who are committed to creating stories that showcase what makes...

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How to Find the Best Faith-Based Credit Union

Posted by on Jul 10, 2016 in Family, Giving Back, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored Financial Institutions have changed a lot over the years. When I was a child, my mom would go to the bank once a week to deposit checks, get cash, and talk with our local banker. The banker knew all our names, and would always say “hello” when bumping into each other around town. In this day in age, banking has become automated, and a lot of families feel like they have lost that personal connection with their financial institution, making it harder to find a credit union that still makes you feel like they care. When looking for a credit union that has the same personalized feeling like you once had, it is important to find one that has values and supports your faith. A financial institution that won’t treat you like a number and will help your...

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LA Lifeguard Summer Beach Water Safety Tips

Posted by on Jun 12, 2016 in Autos, Family, Featured, Holiday, Hot Topics, Parenting, Summer | 0 comments

 We partnered with Toyota to attend this free community event Did you know that drowning is the leading cause of injury-related death among children ages 1-4? Our Southern California Lifeguards are hard at work this summer helping to keep children safe and saving lives. Toyota has partnered with the LA Lifeguards by providing them with essential tools they need to save lives – durable trucks. For the kick-off of summer, Toyota and the LA Lifeguards held a community event at the Manhattan Beach pier where they shared some water safety tips and offered demonstrations for families visiting the area. We put a 2016 Toyota 4Runner to the test and drove it to the event where my children learned a lot from the LA Lifeguards. Along with families visiting the pier, my children got a chance to sit in the...

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It Starts with a Smile: Enter to Win an Invisalign Smile Grant

Posted by on Jun 1, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  “I am a member of the Invisalign Mom Advisory Board and my son has received complimentary treatment.” It Starts with a Smile. My son has been undergoing Invisalign for the past year, and I have seen a big difference in his self-confidence. He is smiling more, happier, and has even gotten his first girlfriend. All because of his smile. His smile has given him encouragement, confidence, and has changed his life. He is so grateful to Invisalign for helping him to develop a perfect smile that he took a day off of school, and went to Los Angeles to share his thoughts on how Invisalign has given him more self-confidence. While filming, they brought up the question of talking with girls, and the Andrew before Invisalign would have curled up and refused to discuss the issue, but the...

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Calming Mornings with TAZO Chai Latte

Posted by on May 23, 2016 in Dining, Family, Health, Hot Topics, Recipes | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by Starbucks as part of an Influencer Activation. I received compensation and complimentary products to facilitate my review.” My favorite thing to do in the morning is brew a cup of tea and watch the sunrise while reading a book on our outdoor patio. It is calming, and the perfect way to start my day before the craziness of chasing after three kiddos all day commences. Before drinking tea, I was a major coffee drinker. I would drink 4-5 cups of coffee a day, and found that I was dependent on coffee getting me through the day. Part of my “new me in the New Year” commitment to taking care of myself, I have stopped drinking coffee and switched to tea. It was not as easy of a transition as I thought, and I was...

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10 Ways to Get Your Teen to Unplug

Posted by on May 22, 2016 in Entertainment, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech, Television Shows | 0 comments

 We are a member of the Netflix Stream Team Do you have a teenager? Are they always connected to a device? What teen isn’t? Teens of today are always texting, snapping, and live streaming every moment of their life using their mobile devices. The biggest downside is that they are more disconnected from physical relationships, and miss opportunities to learn essential social skills. How do you get your teen to disconnect and join your family at the moment? These are our ten top tips: 1. Hide the chargers. While this is not my #1 recommendation, and there will be tears, your teen will be forced to unplug, and spend quality time with your family. 2. Cut off their wifi. There are multiple devices that parents can utilize that will help with managing their children’s online access. There is the...

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Enter to win a Trip to Australia and Try a2 Milk for Free

Posted by on May 21, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by a2 Milk® as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.” Two months ago, I became an a2 Milk® ambassador. My son has multiple food allergies, and while he is not allergic to milk, it has always caused him digestive issues. I was thrilled to be an ambassador for a2 Milk® and see if the product would make a difference the way he feels compared to drinking traditional milk. a2 Milk® is pure farm-fresh milk, and the only thing it has in common with conventional milk is the look and flavor. The milk comes from special cows that are cared for by family dairy farmers in upstate New York and the Midwest. These exclusive farmers have a heard of specially selected a2 cows that produce milk...

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Potentially Dangerous Nanoparticles found in Baby Formulas

Posted by on May 19, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored As a adoptive mother of two beautiful children, breastfeeding was not an option for me. I had to rely on the manufacturers of baby formula to create a safe product to nourish my growing babies. I recently learned from a laboratory analysis commissioned by Friends of the Earth that potentially dangerous nanoparticles were found in all six baby formulas they tested. They tested leading US brands of baby formula including: G​erber, E​nfamil, Similac, and Well Beginnings​ (Walgreens brand). Three different types of nanoparticles were found including, “needle-like” nano hydroxyapatite, nano TiO2 (titanium dioxide), and nano silica dioxide. These nanoparticle ingredients are not indicated on the label. We are also concerned that F​DA does not regulate nanoparticles in baby formula,​nor does the agency pre screen or test infant formulas before they enter the market. We believe the agency can...

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CASA Celebration Raises Over 1 Million Dollars for OC Youth

Posted by on Apr 21, 2016 in Events, Family, Giving Back, Hot Topics | 0 comments

  Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) hosted their annual Celebration of Children: Black and White ball over the weekend at The Ritz-Carlton in Laguna Niguel. Over 400 guests attended the celebration to help support the work that CASA does in our community for abused, abandoned and neglected children. As a mother of two adopted children, the work that CASA is doing in our community touches my heart in a special way. They are my favorite non-profit in Orange County, and I was thrilled to attend the event along with my husband. The event was one of the most beautiful CASA events to date and the hard work of the co-chairs, Lourdes Nark, Kay Patel, Urvashi Patel and Wendy Tenebaum shined! There was extreme attention to every detail of the majestically decorated ballroom. The evening began with a silent auction...

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Superheroes, Barbies, and Tablets Oh My!

Posted by on Apr 12, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  When people find out that you’re having a baby, one of the first questions you hear is, “Is it a boy or a girl?” We kept our children’s genders a surprise until they were born, but within hours of their respective arrivals, family and friends returned with pink clothing for my daughter and blue clothing for my son. At their first birthday parties, there was no shortage of dolls for my daughter and trucks for my son, and my children loved them. My daughter is active, creative, an extrovert, and loves makeup and nail polish. In the last year she’s also shown an interest in soccer. My son is observant, sporty, musical, and empathetic. He continues to love all things cars and superheroes. And now that they’re older, both kids are captivated by their tablets. Research tells us...

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5 Educational Skills your Child can Learn from a Private Tutor

Posted by on Mar 30, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Young kids can gain a lot from their role models and will follow the lead of the adults in their life. Once children start school, there are examples of what to do and how to behave from day one. Going to school is essentially a kid’s job while they are growing up and education, in general, takes up most of their day. A positive academic role model plays a valued part in a growing student’s life, and they can learn a lot from working with a private tutor. 1) Work ethic School is incredibly demanding. Kids work in the classroom until early afternoon and then sit down to complete homework assignments. Without a high work ethic, it’s difficult for young students to complete all of their academic tasks within a reasonable time frame, which can result in fatigue...

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Dr. Borba’s Parenting Tips

Posted by on Mar 23, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  I attended an event at St. Mary’s School where Dr. Borba shared some parenting tips. In the words of renowned educational psychologist and expert parent educator, Dr. Michelle Borba, “Don’t lose the color of their eyes.” In her talk, Dr. Borba explained that bullying is an unfortunate part of childhood (and beyond). However, she outlined the necessary fundamental skills your child needs when he or she finds themselves in a victimized role. First and foremost, Dr. Borba asserted the need to set a solid foundation for your child. This looks like: Loving your child for who they are not what they do (or don’t do) Setting fair expectations and structure Modeling the rules and expectations Teach them how to be a good friend. Friendships are: Learned, not a given First modeled (think one mother to another) Conflicted, at...

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Protecting the Future Health of your Children with Americord

Posted by on Mar 19, 2016 in Education, Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

  I am a registered nurse and the mother of three boys, ages 7, 2 ½ , and 1 month old. About 1 ½ years ago we received the heart wrenching news that our second son was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma Cancer, one day before his first birthday. This took us on an emotional rollercoaster. Over the next year and a half our son endured lab tests, scans, eight rounds of chemotherapy, and several surgeries. He continues with monthly doctor visits and lab work, as well as periodic scans. Because we know that there is a chance of cancer relapse, and if so, that stem cell transplant is a possible treatment option, we wished we would have collected cord blood from both him and his older brother. But we were not familiar with the program and assumed that...

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Three Tips For Inspiring a Young Athletes to Never Give Up

Posted by on Mar 13, 2016 in Family, Fitness, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/POWERADE Sports can be challenging for the athlete and the parents. Young athletes can be pushed to their limits in competitive sports, and sadly some end up giving up on their dreams. My son, Tyler had always dreamed of playing football, and while we were waiting for him to bulk up so he could give the game a try, it never happened. But, we didn’t let him give up on his dream of playing football, and helped to support him on his journey and fueled his love for the game. Once he started playing football, he was the smallest one on the team, and had to give 110% to keep up with the other athletes, but that didn’t stop him. He persevered, worked hard, and ended up being the strongest player on the...

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a2 Milk vs. Traditional Milk

Posted by on Mar 2, 2016 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by a2 Milk® as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.” My son has suffered from severe food allergies for most of his life. While we have hoped that he would outgrow his food allergies, unfortunately, at the age of thirteen, he still cannot tolerate many foods. Milk has always been one of the few foods that are not one of his allergies, but it always gives him digestive discomfort, so he often avoids drinking it. Having a child with food sensitivities, I am always looking for new foods to try. When I first learned about a2 Milk®, I was curious about how it is different from traditional milk. a2 Milk® is pure farm fresh milk, comes from heirloom a2 cows, and lacks the A1 protein...

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Making Time for What Matters Most

Posted by on Feb 25, 2016 in Education, Family, Giving Back, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored As a mom of three young children, life keeps me busy. Between working and school events, there is rarely time left in my busy day to relax, refresh, and reconnect with my mind, body, and soul. In the New Year, I have made it a priority to work “smarter not harder” so that I have more time to do what matters most – spending quality time with my family and my God. How have I been managing my time better in the New Year? After doing my morning devotional in the backyard while sipping on a cup of hot tea and watching the sunrise, I make a list of what I need to accomplish in my day. While making my daily to-do list, I look it over to see what tools I can utilize to finish my daily...

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Smoke Alarm Inspection: It’s About Time

Posted by on Feb 18, 2016 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored Turn Daylight Saving Time into the Ideal Time to Check your Smoke Detectors Smoke alarms are an essential part of home safety. It is equally vital that they are not ignored once they are installed. Not following up with routine, periodic alarm check-ups could render the devices as nothing more than well-intended showpieces that merely create the illusion of safety. This lack of attention could come with deadly consequences. To wit: according to data mined from the National Fire Incident Reporting System (NFIRS) and the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), one in five home structure fire deaths came from homes that had non-operating smoke alarms present. In most cases, the root of the malfunction was a worn-out alarm or a dead battery. This particular statistic obviously shines a light on something that is not normally thought about, and...

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Preserving Family Memories with the Shutterfly App

Posted by on Jan 13, 2016 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech | 0 comments

  Shutterfly Promo Offers Families Free Prints for a Limited Time I love to take pictures of my kids, and the one tool that I use to capture my favorite memories with my children is with my cellphone. Cellphone photography is my favorite hobby, and I find myself maximizing my cellphone space every month with photos. Sometimes too much, and I end up deleted apps just so that I can take more pictures of my children. Sound familiar? I’ve been committed to finding a simple solution to back-up my cellphone images (other than my home computer) and a place where I could purchase prints to send to the Grandparents or give as gifts on special occasions. I downloaded a couple of different apps, and the one app that I found to work perfectly for me as a busy mom...

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A Family Built on Love Shares Their Story of Adoption

Posted by on Nov 23, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Our family was formed the day our daughter landed in our hearts and home. My husband and I had decided to adopt a child from the foster care system. The wait seemed like forever until Orange County Social Services presented us with this beautiful girl and then everything moved very quickly! Our daughter had a rough start. At birth, her biological parents struggled with mental health issues, substance abuse and domestic violence. She fell into foster care at the age of 2 ½. By the time she was placed in our home one year later, we were her 7th set of parents. The trauma of what she had endured during the first 3 years of her life and the successive moves resulted in PTSD, RAD (reactive attachment disorder) and anxiety disorder. Our family decided that an open adoption...

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Do You have Breast Discomfort? You’re Not Alone.

Posted by on Sep 30, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 This is a sponsored post. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own Do you experience monthly breast discomfort? Ever since giving birth to my son, Tyler, I continually have menstrual-related breast discomfort. I always thought that it was a normal symptom that every woman experienced, and I never knew there was a treatment until recently learning about Violet® iodine. The condition not only affects me but also an estimated 50% of all women during their childbearing years. Just like me, most think it is a normal occurrence, and don’t seek treatment. When my menstrual cycle is approaching the tenderness can get so severe at times that I have to move into a sports bra to seek comfort until the discomfort passes. As my pre-teen daughter is closely approaching the age of beginning her menstrual cycle, I have been...

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Child Creativity Lab in Orange County

Posted by on Sep 28, 2015 in Education, Featured, Giving Back, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

 We have a partnership with the CCL The highly-anticipated opening of the Child Creativity Lab in Orange County is officially here. Earlier this month, the non-profit organization opened the first venue in Orange County to provide reusable materials for artists, teachers, community organizations and families. The resource center is going to make a huge impact on our community by helping to keep reclaimed and reusable resources from filling our precious landfills. Materials include unique and clean manufacturing scraps, a variety of colorful fabrics and textiles, paper goods, decorations, coffee bean burlap sacks, school supplies, picture frame moldings, and many other items that can be repurposed for educational projects, arts and craft supplies, home décor and DIY needs. Because of the organization’s focus on hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, the Depot for Creative Reuse also provides pre-packaged...

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How Girls Scouts Have Impacted an OC Family

Posted by on Sep 24, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, OC Mom Spotlight, Parenting | 0 comments

  “I would love for my daughters to join Girl Scouts. Be a leader, you say?  Well, maybe…” Little did I know that saying “maybe” to volunteering that day would turn into seven memorable years of Girl Scouting with three of my daughters. And one more kindergartner is just starting this year! Part of the reason I signed my first daughter up for Girl Scouts was because honestly, I thought she would be glued to my side forever! Girl Scouts offered her chances to take risks and challenge herself, with the support of her troop and leaders – opportunities like going to a horse camp and learning to ride and care for a creature much larger than herself.  Or feeling the pride of earning her Girl Scout Bronze award as she worked with children with cognitive disabilities. These experiences built her self-confidence so much that now she...

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A Golden Alarm for the Golden State: The Kidde Worry-Free Smoke Alarm Helps Keep You Safe and Compliant with New California Laws

Posted by on Sep 16, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored The smoke alarm that’s been in your home since you bought it in 2008 has finally given up the ghost. The three different 9-volt batteries you tried to revive it with proved to be fruitless in their attempts. You decide to go to your local hardware store to get a replacement, smoke detector in hand so you know to get the same or a similar brand. You flag down the nearest employee and ask her where the smoke alarms are. She sees the defunct detector clutched in your left hand, the blue battery plug in pad dangling from the empty slot. She slightly tilts her head to the left and softly informs you that they are no longer allowed to carry those types of alarms anymore due to a new state regulation. You blankly stare back at her,...

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Don’t Break the Egg: Preventing Shaken Baby Syndrome

Posted by on Sep 8, 2015 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  The fragility of a raw egg has a lot in common with the vulnerability of a baby’s developing brain. To see how, grab a raw egg the next time you’re in the kitchen. Put the egg in a clear container with a lid, give it a good shake, and see how the egg cracks. This demonstrates what happens when an infant’s brain is shaken, a point MOMS Orange County reinforces with its clients of pregnant women, and new mothers and fathers. With Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS), the protective cerebral spinal fluid is unable to cushion the brain against the blunt force to the skull. This violent shock damages the infant’s brain by causing bruising and bleeding. In addition to causing brain damage, shaking the infant can cause permanent disabilities, such as blindness or paralysis, and in the most...

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Tips For Keeping Your Kid Car Tidy (Giveaway)

Posted by on Sep 3, 2015 in Autos, Family, Giveaways, Hot Topics | 4 comments

 Pre-kids my vehicle was, frankly, immaculate. There would be an occasional leftover coffee cup or bottled water in the drink holder, and some dry cleaning hanging in the backseat. But now, I’ve fallen into the abyss that I swore I would never enter: the dirty kid car. The smells emitted from the backseat from my once well-maintained car have been replaced with a mix of sweat, dirt and Cherrios. The ground crumbs and spilled juice box stains have taken a toll on my aging SUV. I decided to do something, or, well, at least call someone to help steer me in the right direction. I called the professionals at the All Hands Car Wash in Aliso Viejo. Manager Ricardo Marquez offered me these helpful tips: Protect. Cover the interior of your vehicle as much as possible. This includes floor...

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Guide to Purchasing Your Teen’s First Car

Posted by on Aug 31, 2015 in Autos, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored I can’t believe that in just three years, I will be purchasing a car for my oldest son. A good friend of mine just went through the process of purchasing her daughters first car, and shared some great advice from her teen car buying experience. Age of Your Children Just because your kids are turning 16, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are ready to get behind the wheel of their first car. Access if your child is mature and responsible enough to take the big step of driving back and forth to school, and being on the road with other drivers. My friend allowed her daughter to get her license at the age of 16 but waited a couple of years before purchasing her first car. Shopping Car shopping can be a frustrating part of the process...

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Tips for Monitoring Your Kids Television Time

Posted by on Aug 31, 2015 in Entertainment, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech, Television Shows | 1 comment

 Sponsored Let’s be honest that monitoring kids television time is a challenge for many parents. With all the great series, movies, and documentaries, it can be tempting for children to try and spend most of their free time watching television. Now that the kids are back in school, and spending less time being active outdoors, it is more important than ever to monitor their screen time so that they can live a well-balanced lifestyle. Charting I am the queen of charts. With our family being so busy with school, sports, and work, charts are the easiest way that my family has found to balance our kids screen time. I keep a small chart by the television where we monitor our children’s screen time. I also use the same chart to add extra television time as a reward for good...

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5 Tips for Balancing Sports and Academics

Posted by on Aug 30, 2015 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  It’s always been a challenge for students to maintain their commitment to after school sports while engaging in college prep. For some students, it will be absolutely essential to achieve their athletic goals, if they are in line for a scholarship or acceptance to a sports-oriented university. Others, who may not be in line for a scholarship, may simply be devastated at the thought of giving up their athletic goals and losing their team companionship. Either way, balancing sports and college prep is a delicate balance but it can be done. Preparation is essential If students don’t think about what their sports schedule will be like until partway through the year, they will often find themselves in an emergency situation. Their grades will already be slipping, their brains will be exhausted, and their bodies are not ready to...

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Tips for Talking to Your Child About Bullying

Posted by on Aug 26, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  It’s back-to-school season and along with that comes the return of school yard bullying, unfortunately. But what’s worse, is that our kids today are facing increased challenges when it comes to bullying. With the increased access to smartphones and social media, bullying isn’t confined to school. According to anti-bullying expert Gabriella van Rij, when addressing difficult issues, like bullying, parents mean well, but often good intentions are met with a stony silence or roll of the eyes. Here are some insights to keep in mind when addressing this difficult topic with kids. If your child is the bully: Punishment is not the solution. Intervention and communication between victim and bully is key. Work with the school and the other parents to set something up. The nature of a bully is someone who is scared him/herself and who bullies others...

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5 Reasons to Get Educational Support Early in the Year

Posted by on Aug 24, 2015 in Education, Family, Hot Topics | 0 comments

  Summer is over and kids are back in school. They are transitioning away from the park, beach, and arts and crafts table and back into the learning environment of the classroom. In addition to the initial transition, kids are adjusting to a new teacher, new friends, and new academic tasks. Kids that used to sail through the year in the past are more often in need of help; it’s no wonder with all of the added testing and pressure that has become part of a young student’s daily life. If they do end up needing a little help, it’s generally better to start early. Make the transition all at once Since kids are currently transitioning to a new school year, they are already undergoing an adjustment. If a tutor or mentor is introduced into the situation at this...

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Battling Back-to-School Germs with Hand Sanitizers

Posted by on Aug 20, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Sponsored I think that I am the only person on Earth who has never used a hand sanitizing product before. I have always been wary of using any chemical-based products on my children’s skin. Why now? Let’s be honest. It is always the last week before a holiday or summer vacation that every parent seems sends their kids to school (sick or not). Most parents don’t want their kids to miss that special holiday party or to say good-bye to their teacher, and can often overlook the fact that their child’s runny nose is a sign they should miss it. My kids are almost never sick. They eat a very healthy diet, get plenty of rest, and we have an eco-friendly living environment. My youngest son was Neutropenic for most of his life, and I have always used natural...

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7 Ways Kids Can Make A Difference On National Senior Citizens Day

Posted by on Aug 19, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  According to the Administration on Aging, senior citizens represent more than 14 percent of the U.S. population, and this population is expected to grow significantly as baby boomers reach the age of 65. With seniors making up such a large portion of our population – and with the senior population growing quickly – it’s important to have special days that recognize the achievements and needs of senior citizens. On August 21, National Senior Citizens Day serves as a great reminder to reconnect with senior relatives and loved ones. Among the current senior population, approximately 12.5 million senior citizens are living alone. With busy lives, you might feel guilty if it’s been a long time since you’ve visited with the seniors in your life especially if they are alone. However, that shouldn’t be a reason to keep you from...

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Creating a Backyard Vegetable Garden that Thrives

Posted by on Aug 18, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

 Bee house received My #1 hobby is gardening. I love spending hours in my backyard vegetable garden growing organic fruits and vegetables for my family. Over the years, the biggest struggle I have had with growing backyard produce is having bees to pollinate the flowers. We have all read story after story about how the bees are disappearing, and I have personally seen the impact over the past couple of years in my garden. Without bees, we can’t grow fruits and vegetables. They are the one thing that is key in having a backyard garden thrive. I have been doing some research recently on how to bring some bees into my garden to help with pollination, but I was concerned about the risk of the bees stinging my children. After doing research provided by the Friends of the Earth,...

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10 Things Not To Do in a School Car Line

Posted by on Aug 13, 2015 in Education, Family, Hot Topics | 1 comment

  As a mom, I have to drop-off and pick-up my kids from school. Now, I’m no expert on what to do and not to do, but here are a few ideas from what I have seen happen at my school car line. The obvious one is cutting everyone off and going to the front of the line.  Please stop!  Yes, we all very aware that you are more important than the rest of us, and “yes” so are your children. While in the pickup line, if you feel the need to talk badly about the school, teachers, children, and parents at the school on your car’s hands-free Bluetooth, maybe putting the volume on high isn’t the smartest thing to do.  Next time roll-up your windows up, turn the volume down, and talk all you want about how your child’s...

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How I’m Using Cooking to Outwit Autism

Posted by on Aug 11, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Those of you who have seen the CHASE ‘N YUR FACE website, CHASE’S COOKING SHOW, and the food adventures that we’ve shared on Facebook and Twitter, will find it hard to believe that Chase struggled with food aversions for the first few years of his life. It’s extremely common for those diagnosed with Autism to have food aversions. What isn’t common, is for someone like Chase to go from eating a personal menu of only 5 foods (literally!), to being a genuine “foodie”. We’re now talking about a kid who lists braised rabbit as one of his favorite foods, and wants to go to New Orleans to try fried alligator! How, why, and when did this happen, you ask? Well, the nuances of how and why, we’ll probably never know for sure. Every parent who, like myself, has...

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Don’t Get Burned: What You Need to Know About Sunscreen and Skin Cancer

Posted by on Aug 4, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  Most children are lucky – they can’t imagine what it’s like to have a long-term health problem. That’s why it’s so important that parents put in the extra effort to teach children how to protect themselves from preventable health issues at a very early age. Skin issues in particular require a lifetime of good habits. As a dermatologist, I’m always hearing about the “could have’s” and “should have’s”. Taking care of your skin is a lifelong to-do. Young children rely on you to teach them how to protect their skin, and that should start with protecting them against skin cancer. The incidence of melanoma, the deadliest skin cancer, is increasing, but treatment is curative if the melanoma is caught early. Melanoma is caused by sun exposure, and some families have an inherited risk. Two sunburns before the age...

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Clutter is here to Declutter the Lives of OC Moms

Posted by on Jul 22, 2015 in Family, Fashion, Hot Topics, Shopping | 0 comments

  Perfect for busy parents seeking simple storage solutions and just in time for back-to-school prep! Clutter is now here to help OC Moms get rid of the clutter in their lives. In a nutshell, Clutter takes the “self” out of self-storage with a convenient  one-click process akin to a valet car service. Clutter does the heavy lifting, eliminating the need to hire movers or even pack. Items are stored in reusable, eco-friendly boxes with free pick-up and one-hour on-site packing. And, the best part…Clutter photographs all your belongings, ensuring you never forget what you’ve stored ever again. Clutter’s careful categorization system makes organization a breeze. Truly transformative and totally transparent, Clutter photographs all of its customer’s belongings, labels each item with an easily identifiable category, and then manages them online, ensuring their clients never forget what they’ve stored ever again. Additional packing services...

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ECCU Can Help Parents Lower the Financial Stress of Higher Education

Posted by on May 27, 2015 in Education, Family, Featured, Giveaways, Hot Topics | 0 comments

 Sponsored Saving for college is an important task, since we all know that higher education isn’t cheap. But even though we are reminded about how critical this step is every time we encounter the latest metrics on the cost of tuition and books, real life tends to be a stumbling block that gets in the way of our intentions. And this is more widespread than you may realize: According to a survey conducted by student loan giant Sallie Mae, only 48% of parents are saving for their child’s education. If you aren’t currently socking away future collegiate costs, take comfort. You’re not alone. You’re also not too late to start up a college savings plan, which is a task that a reputable financial institution like Evangelical Christian Credit Union can help you complete. Even if you have never been...

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CHOC Gives Hope for Childhood Mental Health in Orange County

Posted by on May 21, 2015 in Family, Featured, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  The numbers regarding mental health conditions amongst children are staggering. Studies show one in five children experiences a diagnosable mental health condition over the course of their childhood, a metric that extrapolates to 150,000 Orange County kids. Even more startling is how woefully insufficient proper treatment for these conditions has traditionally been. For example, inpatient beds for mental health patients younger than 12 currently do not exist in Orange County. It is an issue that partially stems from the notion that childhood mental health conditions are something that is acknowledged but seldom discussed, leading to a lack of knowledge of all that is actually needed. It is also an issue that CHOC Children’s in Orange is tackling head-on, thanks to an ambitious initiative that was unveiled on Wednesday, May 20th. The core of the initiative is to not...

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An App That Brings Families Together

Posted by on Apr 28, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Tech | 0 comments

 Sponsored Talking to family that lives hundreds of miles away from you is relatively easy in this age of technology. Connecting with them as if they were in the same room is a different story. While a phone call or a social media message will carry a nice sentiment, they oftentimes feel as if you’re “checking in” rather than growing a bond. This is especially true with grandparents and grandkids, where the generation gap oftentimes produces shallow conversations. The need to make and cultivate these connections is why Panasonic’s HomeTeam™ app is such a vital download. This special online service reaches across distance and generations to connect grandparents, parents, and grandkids by letting them enjoy shared experiences in real-time. With the HomeTeam™ app, family members of all ages can engage in the kinds of activities that may otherwise only...

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Celebrate Earth Day Every Day at The Ecology Center

Posted by on Apr 20, 2015 in Activities, Earth Day, Events, Featured, Holiday, Hot Topics | 0 comments

  Children across the nation will celebrate Earth Day on Wednesday, April 22nd. The one-day event will focus on living sustainable lifestyles in order to treasure our precious natural resources. While we encourage everyone to celebrate with their children on April 22nd, families are invited to continue educating their children at the Ecology Center in San Juan Capistrano. In anticipation of Earth Day, our family attended their special Earth Day celebration earlier this month. Hundreds of local parents and children came together to learn about sustainability and easy, beneficial ways that children can make an impact on our Earth. Children participated in Earth Day crafts, learned about water conservation and ate delicious food from Chipotle. Chipotle has sponsored a learning station at The Ecology Center where children can learn about the importance of knowing where their food is coming...

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7 Tips to Help Moms Manage Stress

Posted by on Apr 15, 2015 in Family, Featured, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  What affects you, can affect your child. Mothers hear this message a lot from MOMS Orange County, usually in connection with prenatal care, nutrition and health education. But what they sometimes overlook is the connection between their stress levels and the health of their babies. During April, we recognize National Stress Awareness Month. Learning healthy ways to cope with stress is not just for the working professional trying to please a boss or meet a deadline. Mothers and pregnant women suffer from the same symptoms of stress as everyone else does, including difficulty sleeping, changes in eating habits, and relationship strains with family and friends. But it’s even more important for mothers-to-be to acknowledge their stress, strive for quality sleep, maintain a proper diet and connect with a support system. If stress gets the best of you, you...

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Stress-free Spring Cleaning Tips

Posted by on Mar 11, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

 I don’t know about you, but it seems that every year around this time something hits me. I notice my closet is bursting with clothes I haven’t worn in years, the windows have a dusty filmy residue, and the baseboards and moldings are scuffed. No, it’s definetly not anything remotely close to spring fever — it’s spring cleaning time. Where to start? It all seems so overwhelming. Below are a few steps to help alleviate the stresses of spring cleaning: Assess Take a sweep around your house. Look in the closets, open the fridge, slide your hand along the kitchen counters, check the baseboards, moldings and ceiling corners. Grab a pen and paper, and make a list. If the list seems too long, then put a star on the top five must-dos. Purge & Organize After making your list, hit...

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Creating Special Memories with Children at Bedtime

Posted by on Mar 8, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Today, I’m partnering with Got Milk to tell my family bedtime story.. My favorite part of parenting is when our family comes together for a cup of warm milk and a bedtime story. The kids sip on their cup of warm milk while my husband and I take turns reading our favorite children’s book. After story time, the kids brush their teeth and slowly drift off to sleep. When I was a child, my parents would also serve me a cup of warm milk during my bedtime stories. Now that I’m a parent, I get to pass the same tradition down to my children. Milk has played an important role in helping to calm our children at night so they can get a much needed good night sleep to be successful in school. The nights when we are traveling,...

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How to Handle Your Teen Hormone Melt Downs

Posted by on Mar 1, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 Door slamming and isolation. Eye rolling. Hands on hips and quick to anger. Uncontrollable, unexplainable crying. For those parents with a tween/teen, these are some of the all-too-common signs of RAGING HORMONES. As my tween daughter is having one of her moments, I rack my brain with the question: “Was I like this?” The answer: yes. Although hormones are the chemicals that cause the physical growth and sexual development, it doesn’t make it any easier to be on the receiving end as a parent. And, as these substances seem to take hold of your tween/teen’s body, emotions, moods and sexual feelings, what is a parent to do? Leslie Dixon, health educator, Birds & Bees Connection, who works with parents and adolescents to better understand the physical, emotional and psychological changes, offers these potentially life-saving tips: Stay Calm & Don’t overreact....

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Five Tips to Encourage Reluctant Readers to Pick Up a Book

Posted by on Feb 28, 2015 in Education, Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

  In an age of tablets, smartphones, and hundreds of television channels, it can be difficult to encourage kids to tear their eyes away from the screen and pick up a book. Despite the benefits of technology—helping people to quickly retrieve and disseminate information, as well as creating connections between people regardless of distance, for instance—it is just as important now to read books as it ever was. Rather than allowing a child to passively watch as stories, ideas, and visuals are presented to him via websites and television, reading is active; a reader uses the information on the page to construct her own worlds, and must decipher themes, analyze characters, and pick apart story arcs on her own. As a result, regular readers have longer attention spans, better ability to process and comprehend information, and display more vibrant...

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When Is Your Child Ready for a Sleepover?

Posted by on Feb 27, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 The late night ring of the phone said it all as the tiny voice asked me to sing her a lullaby. It was my seven-year-old daughter at her first sleep over. I sang her favorite bedtime song, and then a few minutes later the phone rang again. This time it was the mother of the sleepover friend. In a hushed voice she said, “You need to come pick her up now.” With that experience, I always wondered, when is the ‘right’ age or time for a sleepover? Clearly, I felt as if I goofed as a parent. Kate Baxter, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in Orange County advises, “Sleepover requests usually begin from your children or the parents of your children’s friends between ages seven to 10.” Baxter explains that even though your child is asking to have a...

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Tryout Tips for Parents: 5 Tips for Helping Your Child Make the Team

Posted by on Feb 21, 2015 in Family, Featured, Fitness, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  As the upcoming sports season approaches, our throats begin to tighten. Spring sports tryouts are underway, and our children are stressed. Chances are, you’re feeling just as anxious for tryouts as your kids. Best case scenario, they make the team and happily transition into the regular season, worst case they don’t and they come to you in a whirlwind of emotion that leaves you struggling to find a resolution. If you’re looking for a more concrete way to improve your child’s skills, CoachUp is a great resource for families looking to hire one in their area. There are a variety of private coaches that will fit your, or your child’s, needs. With experienced instructors from squash to basketball to strength and conditioning, CoachUp coaches are qualified and have all been background checked for safety. If a private coach...

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The Psychology Needed to Feed Children Well

Posted by on Feb 17, 2015 in Education, Family, Featured, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 1 comment

  Feeding children is not an easy task. Mealtimes can be stressful from dealing with picky eaters, concerns about a child’s weight (too little or too much) and other stresses. But the reality is that mealtimes are critical to a child’s development and total well being. Using mealtimes as a base camp for refueling your family with nutrition and love could be the most powerful tool you have in raising a happy, healthy child. Perhaps you, like many parents out there, have already been trying to help your child lose or gain weight, or just to eat healthier, but it hasn’t been working, and instead, it’s adding more stress to your lives—and as a result, your relationship with your child is possibly suffering. After 13 years at ground zero treating the toughest cases of childhood obesity (with over an...

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Herbal tea for Kids?

Posted by on Feb 13, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  What has no sugar, no calories, but is loaded with antioxidants, vitamins and minerals?  Tea! And herbal teas (otherwise known as tisanes) are naturally caffeine-free, thus making them a perfect beverage choice for kids.  While the kids’ tea category is still in its infancy, it is poised for strong growth for the following reasons: (1) it stands to benefit from the solid growth in the adult tea market, (2) it meets a real consumer need for a lower sugar, antioxidant-rich beverage for kids, and (3) there are ways to formulate it in order to achieve a taste profile that appeals to kids. Tea’s popularity has surged over the last few years with more and more adults drinking ready-to-drink tea, bagged tea, kombucha, and the various flavored tea drinks recently entering the market. In 2013, tea category sales totaled...

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5 Cold and Flu Survival Tips for Mom

Posted by on Feb 9, 2015 in Health, Hot Topics, Uncategorized | 1 comment

 This is a sponsored post for SheSpeaks/P&G The worst thing that can happen to a mom is coming down with a cold or flu. When a fever strikes, as moms, we need to strike back harder. These are some great tips to help survive the hardest days as a mom when a cold and flu strikes home! Rest The best thing that a mom can do when getting sick is to get plenty of rest. Although it can be challenging when chasing toddlers around the house, call a friend or relative to help so that you can get the rest your body needs to fight the germs that are attacking your immune system. Hydration Drink lots of water to keep your body hydrated when fighting a cold/flu. It might make sense to drink plenty of water when you’re sick,...

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Keeping Kids Happy & Healthy with Probiotics

Posted by on Feb 2, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 This is sponsored post written on behalf of Culturelle® Kids Probiotic.  All opinions are 100% my own. Probiotics have been the key to keeping my kids healthy and happy during the winter season. I have been giving my kids probiotics since they were just toddlers to help support their immune health. While it is not just giving probiotics to my children that has been key to keeping them healthy and happy, it has played an important role in their overall health. The best part… they never know they are even taking a nutritional supplement because I have always added it to their morning smoothie or parfait avoiding any resistance from my younger ones! For over a year, I have been giving my kids Culturelle Kids Probiotic. I was first drawn to the product because of the convenient single serve...

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Massive IKEA Crib Mattress Recall

Posted by on Jan 18, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Uncategorized | 0 comments

  Do you have an IKEA VYSSA crib mattress in your nursery? It’s important to read below to see if it has been included in the massive IKEA crib mattress recall. There have been reports that the crib mattress can cause entrapment for infants sue to a gab between the mattress and crib. Recall information provided on behalf of IKEA…. This recall applies to any VYSSA mattress with date of manufacture May 04 2014 or earlier. Identification can be found on a permanent label attached to the mattress cover, showing Date of Manufacture Month-DD-YYYY and Model: VYSSA name. Consumers should verify that their crib mattress has the correct length. Measure a possible gap by removing all bedding, for example fitted sheets, and then make sure there is no gap larger than the width of two fingers between the ends...

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Fuel for Young Athletes: Pre-Game Eating

Posted by on Jan 5, 2015 in Family, Health, Hot Topics, Recipes | 0 comments

  Make sure your athlete eats a meal 2-4 hours before his/her event and starts hydrating at that time. The meal should consist of mostly carbohydrates with a small amount of protein. Some examples include oatmeal with honey, raisins or other dried fruit, whole grain cereal + milk + banana, whole wheat sandwich, roll or wrap with turkey, chicken or ham, chicken noodle/vegetable soup with whole wheat bread. If the event is early in the morning, then make it a snack, but DON’T skip breakfast! It can be something small, like a piece of toast with nut butter and a glass of juice, a banana, granola bar, a small smoothie or yogurt… and don’t forget to start hydrating! Recovery Meals Recovery snacks are an essential part of sports nutrition., and after all, kids REALLY care about what snack they...

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Why Moms Night Out Is Good for You

Posted by on Jan 3, 2015 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

 You’ve picked out a super cute outfit, you have your full makeup on for once all week, you’ve actually washed and blow dried your hair – and you are going out tonight, with your girlfriends. And, here’s the kicker – NO KIDS…Moms Night Out! Did I say NO KIDS? I confess, I need more Moms Nights Out (MNO). However, every few months, I do make the effort to be “husband-less and kid-less” to go out with girlfriends. I wondered, though, could not going out, in fact be detrimental to my mental health? According to Kate Baxter, a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist based in Orange County, women may not be able to recognize why they feel like they “need” a girls night, but not having time for yourself to attend to just your needs can lead to feelings of...

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CoachUp: The Difference in the Details

Posted by on Dec 2, 2014 in Family, Fitness, Health, Hot Topics, Parenting | 0 comments

  When you’re coaching your child’s soccer team, it’s almost second-nature to recall each game in fine detail. But when the details don’t reflect your team’s potential, it’s time to take action. Antonio Oropeza of Lomita, California heads his son Antonio Jr.’s under-14 boys soccer team, Melbourne City FC. He clearly remembers the game before his son received one-on-one coaching through CoachUp. “We had taken 3 total shots on goal,” says Oropeza of that match. The team was averaging 5 to 7 shots on goal per game throughout the season and had yet to win a game. “All of a sudden, we were attacking the goalie.” The Melbourne City FC took 18 shots on goal that day, winning their first game of the season, 2–0. “My son took 5 shots,” Oropeza recalls like it was yesterday. “The other boys’...

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SeekingSitters to the Rescue

Posted by on Dec 1, 2014 in Family, Hot Topics, Parenting, Uncategorized | 0 comments

 Sponsored We’ve all been there at one time or another as moms. You know the word (cue scary music)… BABYSITTERLESS. Yes, I made up the word. But seriously speaking, there are a countless number of times my husband and I had adult night out plans, but no reliable sitter. A few years back, though, in sharing my frustrations with a friend, she recommended a sitting service: SeekingSitters. I went on the SeekingSitters Web site that allowed me to see photos and profiles of the various sitters, and easily marked icons that denoted their background and skill sets (CPR, First Aid). Most importantly, all sitters have undergone a thorough background check and screening. How to Use SeekingSitters Using the Web site, I set up our username and password protected family account and profile, including any special needs and/or requests. I...

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