Category: Being Your Best Parent

3 ways to cultivate your kid's creativity


Our kids are like little bundles of potential creativity. The innocent atoms of children are the building blocks of creative minds. Without yet the learned hesitations of society, all ideas are new ideas to our little ones. It's quite beautiful, actually.

There is a certain mental disarming we must do to play freely at the level our kids play. We must put away the pain we know, in our hearts and across the globe, the pain that gives our cheeks frow...

Posted on February 04, 2016 at 11:33 AM by Linda Dennison

Adopted kids aren't 'lucky'


"They are so lucky to have you."

This is something my family hears regularly from strangers and friends alike. Every time I hear it my heart sinks, because I know the person saying it has the best possible intentions but, really, these babies are far from lucky and it misses the reality of their painful journey. 

Every single child deserves a loving, supportive home. Luck should have nothing to do with it. But if it did, "lucky" would have been being able to stay with their fir...

Posted on February 01, 2016 at 8:02 AM by Julianne Neely

Overheard on the NPN forum: Remember when you had hobbies?

Before you had kids, you probably worked out, read novels, kept up with the latest music acts and went to concerts...maybe even went to non-kids' museums to enrich your mind. And now? Between the demands of your kids and your job, you're lucky if you can get through one article online and see your friends in a non-playdate situation once every few months. 

A mom of a one-year-old posted on the NPN discussion forum: "Is it normal to lose the time for hobbies for a good 5 years (at ...

Posted on January 29, 2016 at 11:18 AM by Laura Baginski

How unplugging made me a happier parent

Photo credit


A few weeks ago while hanging out with my boys in their playroom, my four year old looked at me and said, “Mommy, I’m so glad you’re playing with us and not with your phone.” There it was, the punch in the gut that totally and utterly changed my social media habit.


You see, I’m a blogger, so social media is absolutely VITAL to my business. But here’s the thing. I wasn’t keeping my work life and home life separate—it creeped in every day through me checking my ...

Posted on January 18, 2016 at 9:59 AM by Amanda Simkin

What my kids taught me when my dad died

My dad had spent the last several years very unwell, and my mother spent a lot of her time taking care of him. That is a difficult situation for any family, but it is even more difficult when the person you are caring for continuously makes choices that contribute to his bad health. And so, although he was a man we loved, the result was a team of fairly frustrated family members.

My biggest frustration was trying to understand why he didn’t make choices that would allow him to be invol...

Posted on December 15, 2015 at 1:05 PM by Julie Cole

Overheard on the NPN forum: All about MILs

For many of us, the holidays mean being surrounded by family. Which can be both a blessing and a pain in the butt, depending on the personalities in play and how loudly they comment on your parenting style. 

No relationship has the potential for friction—especially during the holidays, when expectations are unnaturally high—more than mothers-in-law and their daughters-in-law. It's no surprise, then, that two of the most popular threads on NPN's discussion forum involve MILs. How d...

Posted on December 04, 2015 at 10:10 AM by Laura Baginski

Celebrating the holidays as an interfaith family

After we got engaged and heard an ongoing chorus of well wishes and congratulations, the first question came—then another and another, always from different people, typically those we had never expected. It was shocking. After all, the way we planned to raise our interfaith children, who didn’t even exist yet, was none of their business. But questions are inevitable when you have an interfaith family.

My husband was raised Jewish and I was brought up in a Catholic home, but to be perfe...

Posted on November 30, 2015 at 1:11 PM by Amanda Simkin

Overheard on the NPN forum: Do you lose your temper with your kids?

Kids of any age can work your last nerve every now and then, but toddlers? They take it to a whole new level. So how do you react when they push you to the brink? Yell? Laugh? Shout, "Serenity now!" to the heavens? Our members are talking about how they handle it when they lose their temper with their kids. Read more.

More trending topics:

Being left out hurts: Moms, stop "social engineering"

Why do people have a strained relationship with their siblings?


Posted on November 06, 2015 at 1:17 PM by Laura Baginski

How to make family meals the best part of your day

We tried a million ways to get our daughter, Soleil, to try new foods, eat what was in front of her, and stop saying she didn’t like something before ever having tried it. And then we came upon this way of planning, preparing and eating meals that not only eliminates those problems, but actually gets her excited about dinner.

There are a lot of steps to getting a meal on the table, from deciding what to eat, making shopping lists, going to the supermarket, making the meal, setting the ...

Posted on September 23, 2015 at 9:15 AM by Mark King

4 tips for a smoother start to the school year


Back-to-school is an exciting, emotional, often hectic time for families. The unending texts about teacher assignments and after-school schedules make this time of year one filled with great anticipation. As we ready our kids for class with new backpacks, new shoes and new pencils, we need to help them emotionally prepare for the year ahead.


Combat fear of the unknown
Help your child visualize and practice her first day of school, including how she will get there, who s...

Posted on August 19, 2015 at 12:05 PM by Heather Bragg