Archive for May, 2013

‘Grups’: Are you a parent who won’t grow up?

New York magazine is examining “Grups” or adults who won’t grow up. The author describes a “Grup” as a 40-year-old (or could be in their 30s) man or woman who look, talk, act and dress like they are in their 20s.  The author, Adam Sternbergh, says it has eliminated the generation gap and describes how this state of being affects their clothes, their music, their jobs and their parenting.

From New York:

“…This cohort is not interested in putting away childish things. They are a generation or two of affluent, urban adults who are now happily sailing through their thirties and forties, and even fifties, clad in beat-up sneakers and cashmere hoodies, content that they can enjoy all the good parts of being a grown-up (a real paycheck, a family, the warm touch of cashmere) with none of the bad parts (Dockers, management seminars, indentured servitude at the local Gymboree). It’s about a brave new world whose citizens are radically rethinking what it means to be a …

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Hospital finds uptick in kids accidentally ingesting marijuana

With at least 18 states allowing medical marijuana and the recent legalization of the drug in Colorado and Washington, doctors are concerned about children accidentally ingesting the legal marijuana.

About four years ago doctors at the Children’s Hospital Colorado noticed more kids coming in after accidentally eating marijuana. However, they weren’t sure if the kids were just finding the marijuana or if it was due to more relaxed policies.

From Time Healthland:

“To find out, they analyzed emergency room visits for kids under 12 seen for poisonings and ingestions of any kind between 2005 to 2011, using the fall of 2009 — when new enforcement guidelines were issued — as a dividing line.”

“From Jan. 2005 through Sept. 2009, there were no marijuana-related visits among 790 patients, according to the research, which was published in JAMA Pediatrics. Between Oct. 2009 to Dec. 2011, however, 14 of 588 children were seen for marijuana exposure — eight involving medical …

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Fix it, trade it or tolerate it: The electric sliding doors on my minivan broke!

You may remember that we bought a Town and Country minivan when our youngest was born in 2007. It has served us well during the last six years. It has traveled numerous times up and down the East Coast and has crossed the United States three times. I’ve got about 84,000 miles on it.

But alas since November my electric sliding doors have been broken. They are broken in different ways. The left side will open when you hit the button but will not close when you hit the button. You have to slam it very hard into the front part for it to engage. The right door will pop open when you hit the button but only about 2 inches. So you then have to manually open it. You also have to manually close it. The doors are extremely heavy and I actually think the electronic mechanism is fighting against you as you try to open and close the doors.

So we finally took it into the dealership to find out how much the doors would cost to be fixed. They said $3400 to fix both doors. They would …

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Three cheers for summer: What’s your big plan?

I’m so glad it’s summer. I love not having a set routine or a set time to get up. I love the kids being able to pursue their own agendas – lollygagging in bed reading a book, filling water balloons in the backyard, creating a You Tube channel. (Guess who’s making the You Tube channel?)

We love to swim in the late afternoons while grilling our dinner. We love to play card games at night around the kitchen table. We love curling up for movies on the couch after a long day of swimming.

Summer also means travel for our family. The kids love seeing new places and crossing states off our list. We will cross three states off this summer when we visit Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons – Idaho, Montana and Wyoming!

We love being on the open road and seeing the West. (Although there are minivan problems. Check out Tuesday’s blog on our minivan dilemma.) I am excited to get them unplugged and back to nature with hiking and camping.

We’re starting the summer off slowly this …

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Gay boys OK, Gay leaders not OK: Does Boy Scout compromise solve anything?

The Boy Scouts of America decided Thursday to allow openly gay boys to join the Scouts but not to allow openly gay leaders.

From The Associated Press:

“Of the roughly 1,400 voting members of the BSA’s National Council who cast ballots, 61 percent supported the proposal drafted by the governing Executive Committee. The policy change takes effect Jan. 1.

“This has been a challenging chapter in our history,” the BSA chief executive, Wayne Brock, said after the vote. “While people have differing opinions on this policy, kids are better off when they’re in Scouting.”

“However, the outcome will not end the bitter debate over the Scouts’ membership policy.

“Liberal Scout leaders — while supporting the proposal to accept gay youth — have made clear they want the ban on gay adults lifted as well.

“In contrast, conservatives with the Scouts — including some churches that sponsor Scout units — wanted to continue excluding gay youths, in some cases threatening to defect if the ban …

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Moms, put YOU on the to-do list!

A few weeks back the dog groomer told me that my dog was suffering from allergies and needed to see the vet.

I went home and immediately called the vet to set up an appointment for the dog.

I hung up the phone, itched my eyes, wiped my nose and realized that I had needed to see the allergist for weeks but never fit myself into the family schedule. I put everyone in our family before me – even the family pet.

I went to the gynecologist on Jan. 30 and brought home the paperwork to set up an appointment for a mammogram but I never called. The paperwork sat on my dresser for several months until I finally moved it to a hanging organizer so I wouldn’t lose it. But it continued to sit.

I finally made my mammogram appointment Tuesday for today. The last thing I can fit in before the kids get out of school.

During those five months I took kids to countless pediatrician appointments, orthopedists appointments, physical therapy appointments, swim meetings, church meetings, birthday …

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How you can help the Oklahoma tornado victims

I cannot even imagine the stress and grief of the Oklahoma parents as they try to find their children in the rubble of two elementary schools hit by tornadoes on Monday.

There was an awful description in an AP story:

“A man with a megaphone stood Monday evening near St. Andrews United Methodist Church and called out the names of surviving children. Parents waited nearby, hoping to hear their sons’ and daughters’ names.”

I feel so terrible for those families and wanted to share ways that we can help victims of the tornadoes.

From USA Today:

“American Red Cross

The American Red Cross has several shelters open in Oklahoma and Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicles have begun delivering hot meals throughout the affected areas. The Red Cross is also working to link loved ones in Moore who are OK through a website called Safe and Well. Text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief, donate online, or donate by phone at 1-800-RED CROSS.

“Salvation …

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Would you get plastic surgery to look better on Facebook?

Earlier this year we learned from a study that scanning our “friends’” photos on Facebook can make us feel envious and lonely. And now we learn that social media may be causing an uptick  in plastic surgery.

From Time’s Healthland:

“Now the annual poll from the American Academy of Facial and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS) reports that social media activity may be driving an uptick in plastic surgery requests.

“The survey polled 752 of the AAFPRS’ board-certified facial plastic surgeons on the trends in reconstructive and cosmetic surgery. This year, one finding stuck out: surgeons are seeing a 31% increase in plastic surgery requests as a result of how people wanted to present themselves on social media….

“The survey shows that growth in cosmetic plastic surgery outpaces demand for reconstructive procedures. Cosmetic surgery accounted for 73% of all plastic surgery operations in 2012, up from 62% in 2011. Among the more popular procedures are rhinoplasty, …

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More than half Atlanta public pool samples had fecal bacteria in 2012: Will you dive in this summer?

More than half of water samples taken from Atlanta-area public swimming pools last summer had fecal bacteria, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released Thursday.

From The Associated Press:

“Investigators found the gut bacteria in 58 percent of the samples taken from about 150 pools in Cobb, DeKalb, Fulton and Gwinnett counties. They were gathered from municipal pools or pools at waterparks, apartment complexes and clubs.

“Municipal pools — where young children in diapers are common — were worst, with 70 percent of samples tainted.

“No illness outbreaks were tied to the pools.

“Proper chlorine and pH levels should kill bacteria. But health officials advise people to shower before the pool, and not swim if they have diarrhea.”

I was talking to my mom on Thursday morning about which water parks we could take the kids to when we visit Atlanta this summer. I was also thinking about trying to get a limited membership to neighborhood pool …

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Are teachers afraid of Mean Girl Moms?

A mom recently told me about a scenario at an elementary school where some Mean Girls bullied her daughter. The girls are supposedly the daughter’s friends and the moms are supposedly the mom’s friends. She wrote to the teacher for help but she is afraid the teacher won’t help because she thinks the teacher is afraid of those moms. She knows that the moms had dressed down the teacher about some other incident that happened earlier in the year.

I told her she should give the teacher a chance to respond but then if she doesn’t go to the principal. She is concerned the principal won’t care because the principal is an interim principal who is leaving at the end of the year.

It’s interesting though that it seems like the little girls are emulating their moms – being pushy and bossy.

What do you think? Have you had a case in your class where the teacher was afraid of dealing with certain parents? Do you see the patterns of Mean Moms then Mean Girls? What steps should …

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