Category: Being Your Best Parent

How I taught my daughter to love being small

Photo: Orlinsky with daughter Hayley

I’ve always told my daughter Hayley that she was smart and beautiful, and I felt that I adequately prepared her for school with a healthy but not over-the-top sense of self-confidence. That all changed one day in preschool when the teachers participated in an innocent activity that had major consequences for Hayley. 

During a classroom redecoration, they hung a growth chart on the wall and placed a piece of tape next to the measurements to show t...

Posted on May 28, 2019 at 1:07 PM by Lori Orlinsky

This summer, let your child be bored

Do you find yourself already planning your child’s summer? Are you anxious at the thought of hearing those three words, “Mom, I’m bored!”? Do you feel like your child has to be busy and engaged in social activities all the time otherwise they get into trouble or display negative behaviors?

Believe it or not, boredom is beneficial. In a day and age where we are accustomed to little wait time, instant gratification, and constant visual entertainment, it is no wonder that our children do ...

Posted on May 28, 2019 at 11:53 AM by Erica Hornthal

To the moms running on fumes, this is how to refill the tank

Mom, have you ever had the feeling that you are running on fumes? Has your tank ever felt empty already when you were waking up in the morning? Have you gone to bed with your mind racing with all the things you need to get done the next day only to be in a twilight sleep the entire night and wake up as tired as you were when you first went to bed?

If you are like most moms, you have probably felt like this on more than one occasion. If you are a normal mom, you have probably felt like ...

Posted on May 09, 2019 at 9:04 AM by Nicole Walker

Your little one can make a big difference for the planet

With 250 million tons of American waste going into landfill annually and 1.3 billion tons of food wasted worldwide each year, it’s important we teach our children the importance of being green. But how do you start a dialogue? Kids love to solve problems and take positive action, so how about engaging your little superhero’s special powers? Who could resist zooming to the rescue to save the planet?

Knowledge: educate
As the saying goes, knowledge is power. Helping your little heroes u...

Posted on March 27, 2019 at 11:42 AM by Fiona Royer

Black history is American history

“Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who’s done an amazing job and is getting recognized more and more, I notice.”

Does that quote sound familiar to you? If you don’t remember those words, they were spoken by our current president two years ago during Black History Month. The clip went viral because Trump used present tense to compliment the famous abolitionist, which suggested that he thought Frederick Douglass was still alive. Unfortunately, for the president, Douglass has b...

Posted on February 19, 2019 at 7:00 AM by Keisha Mathew

In the spirit of love: showing gratitude to your partner

I might pride myself on saying thank you and being thoughtful, but like many of us I probably don't show enough gratitude to the person who does the most for me: my partner. So in the spirit of love and committing to show my appreciation more, I enlisted my husband's input on ideas:

Send something to work

A no-brainer way to show gratitude is to add chocolate or a little something to a work bag. But organizing something to be delivered takes this one step further. While flowers are ...

Posted on February 14, 2019 at 7:00 AM by Fiona Royer

How to counter consumer culture with your kids

Another holiday season is over, leaving many with sweet memories of “joy to the world,” while for others there is a bitterness of “bah humbug.” Some of those feelings derive from the surplus of things and loved ones we were surrounded by—or not. Our materialistic culture gives us both the illusion of abundance and the pressure to replace our possessions with the latest and newest version. Our motivation to consume is to make us happier. But is that what it’s actually doing?

As a child,...

Posted on January 08, 2019 at 12:32 PM by Keisha Mathew

When it comes to self-care, listen to Michelle Obama

I had the pleasure of joining thousands of other women to attend Michelle Obama's book launch event for her book, Becoming, on Nov. 13 at United Center. It was amazing! I was in awe of her story, her strength, and steadfastness to become the Michelle Obama so many of us have come to love and adore. No matter your political affiliation, you cannot deny the superpowers she displays as a daughter, wife, mom, friend and leader. A true boss! 

Ok, so now that I have finished gushing about Mi...

Posted on January 07, 2019 at 1:19 PM by Nicole Walker

Help young kids see the getting season as the giving season, too

We all know how much kids like to receive. You only have to mention Santa, the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy to understand how true that is. So how can we teach our children to appreciate that the holiday season is primarily about giving, not getting, and to understand how lucky they are?

Start early. Although giving and gratitude are hard concepts for really little ones to grasp, it’s never too early to start building a culture that embraces them. I’ve heard that by the age of 4 hab...

Posted on November 07, 2018 at 12:29 PM by Fiona Royer

Take the time to learn how to pronounce 'difficult' names

When I met my now-husband, he introduced himself using his middle name, Cyriac. “Cyriac” was especially difficult for me to pronounce because it was completely foreign to my ears. I remember being tongue-tied every time I attempted to say his name.

Because of those earlier awkward, yet amusing, moments, I always give others grace when they have the same experience hearing his name for the first time. Because of that expected awkwardness, in certain situations, my husband sometimes choo...

Posted on November 07, 2018 at 11:42 AM by Keisha Mathew