Archive for March, 2013

A mom wants to know: How to handle preteen defiance?

A got  a note from old classmate a few weeks back and she’s having a little trouble with some preteen defiance. She is looking for advice from our veterans with older kids. Here is what she wrote me:

“He’s 11, in BETA Club, good athlete, attractive, healthy, has a nice roof over his head, always something cooked for dinner. My oldest so is as easy a kid to raise as any child ever has been. This one is going to get the last word in even when he knows it’ll result in restriction. He smarts off under his breath and he believes I favor the older one. The older one is just easier….. I don’t need to correct his behavior as frequently. My little one thinks its personal.”

I wrote back that I didn’t have too many answers on this because my oldest is the same age as her youngest but I would throw it out to you guys for advice. How do you handle preteen (teen) defiance? Is it different when they become teens than when they are younger or just over different things — like driving or …

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Would you name your baby for the pope?

The name Francis was popular a century ago and has been on a downward trend since the 1920 but all that’s about to change according to some baby naming experts.

With the new Pope choosing Francis as his name, experts expect to see a huge uptick in parents choosing the name as well.

From Today Moms:

“The new pontiff will likely change that as he travels around the world, drawing huge crowds and prominent headlines. Variations such as Francisco, Francesca, Francine, Franny and Frank could also get a boost, according to Nameberry.”

“ ‘Popes are not thought to be major fashion influencers, but the significance and symbolic power of this name choice could definitely influence parents to consider all forms of Francis for their children,” said Pamela Redmond Satran, editor of Nameberry.com.”

“ ‘It’s a beautiful name with deep history and resonance and definitely worthy of consideration, even aside from the blessing of the pope.’ ”

Would you name your baby for the pope? Are you more …

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Pew Research: Working mothers increasingly want full-time jobs, but still working hard at home

The Pew Research Center released a new study today examining work and home life duties for both moms and dads. Here’s what it found.

From The Associated Press via Bloomberg Businessweek:

“WASHINGTON (AP) — Working mothers increasingly want full-time jobs, and tough economic times might be a big reason, according to a national survey.”

“In the Pew Research Center study being released Thursday, researchers saw a big spike in the share of working mothers who said they’d prefer to work full time; 37 percent said that was their ideal, up from 21 percent in 2007.”

“The poll comes amid a national debate on women in the workplace ignited by top Facebook executive Sheryl Sandberg, who writes in a new book about the need for women to be more professionally aggressive.

“In “Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead,” Sandberg argues that women have not made true progress in the workplace over the past decade and that they need to raise their hands more and “lean in” if they want to land …

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Could radical new treatments help kids with multiple food allergies?

It’s commonplace for people with environmental allergies to get multiple shots at one time with a mix of different allergens. So for example before I got pregnant with my third child, I was getting three shots with a mix of grass pollens, tree pollens, cat, dog and dust mites.

However for children with multiple severe food allergies, this approach had never been attempted, for fear of extreme reaction, until recently.

Kari Nadeau, an M.D./Ph.D. and an associate professor of allergies and immunology at Stanford University School of Medicine and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital, began treating children in 2011 with oral immunotherapy for multiple allergens. Here’s quick summary of the story. It runs 10 pages long.

From The New York Times Magazine:

“Nadeau and others, however, were having success with a trial of a treatment known as oral immunotherapy that could desensitize children with severe peanut allergies. The treatment re-educated the hyperactive immune systems of …

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Report: Preschool investigated for allegedly tying up 2-year-old who wouldn’t nap

Mercury News.com is reporting that a preschool is being investigated after a former employee allegedly tied up a 2-year-old girl for refusing to take her nap and later showed photos of it to other teachers, including the child’s mother.

Mercury News.com:

“PLEASANTON — …”A complaint filed March 5 with the Department of Social Services alleges that a former teacher of Centerpointe Christian Preschool bound the child’s wrists and ankles with masking tape, then made her sit on a cot while she took a photograph.”

“According to a church statement, nobody knew about the incident until months later, when the employee pulled out her cellphone at a social gathering earlier this month and showed photos of the child to two current staff members. One of the teachers who viewed the photo was the mother of the child in the photograph.”

“We are appalled and shocked that such an incident, if proven to be true, took place. Every human person made in the image of God, all of the …

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Did Daylight Saving Time screw up your phone’s calendar?

I think most cell phones are supposed to adjust automatically to time zone changes when you fly and time changes during the year.

But for some odd reason all of the appointments listed on my Google calendar on my Samsung phone were switched to an hour earlier even though my time didn’t change. (Arizona doesn’t need any more sun so they don’t do Daylight Saving Time.)

I was sitting on the couch Monday morning puzzling over which time Walsh’s doctor’s appointment actually was when my babysitter called and her Android phone had done the same thing. She’s said, “Am I supposed to be there at 8:30 or 9:30?”

The time was correct on my phone but the calendar was messed up. The both said Arizona time (who knew that was it’s own category) but I went in and manually changed in the settings on my phone and calendar to hopefully correct it.

Did anybody else have this problem with their Android phones? Did anybody else have this problem with their Google calendars? Did this happen to iPhones?

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Third-graders cupcakes impounded for being topped with toy soldiers

A third-grade boy in Michigan brought in 30 homemade cupcakes for his birthday – each topped with green plastic World War II figurine soldiers.  The school secretary commented positively about them but then the mom got a different call.

The Daily Caller reports:

“About 15 minutes later the school called my wife and told her they couldn’t serve the cupcakes because the soldiers had guns,” Casey Fountain, the boy’s father, told Fox News. “My wife told them to remove the soldiers and serve the cupcakes anyway — and I believe she may have used more colorful language…”

In a statement to local media, Schall Elementary School principal Susan Wright Susan Wright doubled down on her school’s bold stand against little green men that represent American soldiers.

“These are toys that were commonplace in the past,” Wright said. “However, some parents prohibit all guns as toys. In light of that difference, the school offered to replace the soldiers with another item and the soldiers were …

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Is ‘Oz the Great and Powerful’ worth your money?

It’s spring break week out here so I am looking for stuff do with my kids – one who is in a wheelchair with a broken leg (waterslides need not apply). So I am wondering about taking them to see “Oz the Great and Powerful.”

It actually did well over the weekend, topping the box office with $80.3 million. Reviewers have given it a passing grade – see below CNN declares it good enough. But I am wondering did you take your kids to see and what did you think? Will my youngest (now 6) be scared in it?

From MTV News:

“It’s been nearly 74 years since Dorothy first walked the yellow brick road in “The Wizard of Oz” and over the weekend, the Emerald City and its residents captivated audiences once more. “Oz the Great and Powerful” topped the box office with a whopping $80.3 million debut, making Disney’s prequel of sorts to MGM’s 1939 classic the first big-budget blockbuster of 2013.”

“Featuring James Franco in the title role of author L. Frank Baum’s would-be wizard, “Oz” debuted in …

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What I’ve been working on: 2 birthdays and a wheelchair

My birthday hubby and baby girl. How could she possibly be 6? Michael loves ice cream cakes but they don't have Bruster's here so I had to try Baskin-Robbins. It was very good. I got Lilina one too even though she had her party last Saturday.

My birthday hubby and baby girl. How could she possibly be 6? Michael loves ice cream cakes but they don't have Bruster's here so I had to try Baskin-Robbins. It was very good. I got Lilina one too even though she had her party last Saturday.

Hey guys I am getting up a new blog topic in just a few minutes but I wanted to show you guys what I’ve been working on this week. Walsh got his cast on Monday (see Facebook for that shot — it is a giant cast) and then I made phone calls for three days to get the right wheelchair for him. The cast is super heavy and hurts when he walks on crutches. He needed a wheelchair with an elevated platform to support the leg. He was too big (almost 10) for the pediatric wheelchair but the adult one is too heavy so we needed a lightweight wheelchair. So that took a bunch of phone calls back and forth with insurance, doctor’s office and two medical supply places to get the right prescription that they would process. But it finally arrived last …

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Should students be suspended for takes on ‘Harlem Shake?’

A mom sent me a note about students being suspended for creating versions of the “Harlem Shake.” She thought it would be a cute video for her son’s senior class but now she’s concerned that they might be suspended. Here’s more:

“Personally I think it’s a riot and told my son, who is a senior, that he ought to get the senior class to film one. But then I started hearing about kids getting suspended for it. Some schools think it’s too [sexually] suggestive. But I’ve seen all kinds of groups post their version (including Scout Troops and our local Chick-Fil-A staff!) so I do believe it can be done in a non-suggestive manner.”

“I think some of the suspensions came as a result of lying about the use of school property and disrupting class. But if it’s done in a tasteful manner and outside of school hours, is it really that bad? Since it’s an international phenom right now, I think it would fun for his Senior Class to do their own video but since he goes to a pretty strict …

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