Is school stressing your kids out? 7 tips for managing school-related stress

Starting school each fall is like starting a new job. The first few weeks are often exciting but it can be stressful to adjust to a new routine and get a grip on the realities of the job. By mid-September, students that were once excited about school may feel stress and anxiety about homework and […]

6 ideas for grabbing grown-up time

Kids aren’t the only ones in the family that can benefit from playdates. Parents need leisurely interaction with adults, too, especially moms or dads who primarily stay home with kids. Generally speaking, the more kids you have, the more packed your schedule is and the harder it may be to fit in social time. But […]

5 podcasts for mom’s back-to-school learning

The kids will be back in school soon, but they aren’t the only ones in the family who could benefit from additional education. It’s a smart idea for parents to be continually learning, too, even if they aren’t formally enrolled in class. Podcasts are a convenient way to get education on the go. Listen to them […]

6 ideas for helping kids understand their emotions

Joy, sadness, anger and disgust. Thanks to the Disney animated flick “Inside Out,” parents and their kids may be thinking a lot more about these emotions. And hopefully they’re talking about them, too, says Ross Flom, a BYU psychology professor who specializes in child development. Flom and two former grad students co-authored a study released […]

6 tips for raising entrepreneurial kids and teens

Lemonade stands are hardly the get-rich-quick scheme that young children often hope they’ll be. But even if you know your kids won’t strike it rich selling watered-down drinks for a quarter to passersby, there are good reasons to encourage your child’s inner entrepreneur anyway. “I think that the world in general needs more entrepreneurial minds,” […]

Hey, Mom: You have more free time than you think

Moms never get enough sleep and they certainly don’t get any “me” time — or so goes popular opinion. But numbers from the latest American Time Use Survey released last Wednesday say those common societal laments aren’t necessarily true. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics survey, women in households with children under age […]

7 tips for staying relevant while a stay-at-home mom

Utah seems to be the place for stay-at-home moms. According to the most recent statistics from the U.S. Census Bureau, Utah is tied with Arizona for the highest percentage of stay-at-home moms. Your stance on the mommy wars aside, many stay-at-home moms plan on going back to work at some point. Maybe you’re waiting until […]

6 low-maintenance pets for families instead of a dog

A dog may be man’s best friend, but Fido isn’t the only pet fit for a family. There is a menagerie of animals that make great family pets and are a lot less work than a dog or even a cat. Next time your kids beg for a pet, consider satiating their need for an […]

7 hints for fantastic family camping trips

  No indoor plumbing, no fridge, no walls, no privacy. There are reasons why camping with kids in the Great Outdoors may not seem like such a great idea. But there are grounds for trying it out, anyway. No electronics, no friends and no cleaning, to name a few. Camping is a relatively inexpensive activity […]

5 unconventional summer camps for kids

Around this time every academic year, parents and kids alike start daydreaming of a summer unshackled by routines and requisites. Three months of winging it sounds just about right — until a few weeks into the break when you remember that “winging it” means epic sibling battles and endless requests for rides, cash and entertainment. […]

Make your Saturdays special with these 8 tips

“Saturday is a special day, it’s the day we get ready for Sunday.” That may be true, but that doesn’t mean Saturdays should be all work and no play. After all, if you observe Sundays as a Sabbath Day of worship, Saturday is likely the lone weekend day for family work and play. Make it count […]

5 Utah Valley memberships every mom/family needs

Raising kids isn’t cheap. According to the United States Department of Agriculture, kids born today will cost parents nearly a quarter of a million dollars to raise from birth to age 17. No, childhood isn’t cheap, but not everything you do with or for your family has to cost a mint. Here are five of […]

5 routines to minimize decision-making fatigue

File this under things no one tells you before you have kids: As a mom, you’ll have to make what seems like a million decisions each day. What time should you wake up the kids? What should you make for breakfast? And what is there to pack for lunch? Do you eat one cookie or […]

6 ideas for raising globally aware kids

Friday night is family movie night at our house. Usually we let the kids pick the flick, but recently I played my trump card as mom and made everyone watch the award-winning documentary “Living on One Dollar.” In the film, a few American college students spend two months living in rural Guatemala on only $1 […]

10 household tasks you can do in 10 minutes or less

You’ve got 10 minutes until the kids get home from school or the baby wakes up from her nap. There isn’t enough time to start a big project, and you tell yourself you might as well whip out your smartphone and see what’s happening online. But instead of checking your email again (without enough time […]

6 ways to show your kids extra love

February is the month of love, and there is no better time to shower your family with affection. You can’t spoil your kids with too much love, even though your older kids may be grossed out by your displays of affection. Here are six ideas for loving on your kids: 1. Have a heart Cut out […]

7 tricks to help kids help themselves

Without fail, every time I sit down to fold the laundry or return a phone call or chop vegetables for dinner (or dare step foot in the bathroom) my kids urgently need my help. They want a drink or a snack or a toy from a high shelf. I don’t mind lending a hand, but […]

5 life hacks to become a more organized mom

I recently had an epiphany inspired by the most humble of objects: the lowly garbage can. For years, we’ve kept the trashcan in our master bathroom on the wall farthest from the door and next to the toilet. Almost daily, my husband and I stand at the threshold and chuck things in the garbage can. […]

5 end-of-year resolutions to finish before the New Year

I love to get wrapped up in the Christmas spirit. Listening to festive tunes, reading by the light of the tree, snuggling on the couch and watching classic holiday movies. That Christmas-y feeling stays strong all month … at least up until December 26. When I wake up the day after Christmas, and it looks […]

A chore test: Are your kids naughty or nice?

Some of the nicest kids in the nation live in Utah. Or so says data from ChoreMonster, a suite of web and mobile apps that aims to make chores fun for parents and kids. Using completion of chores as an indication of naughtiness or niceness, ChoreMonster executives analyzed more than 7 million completed tasks in […]

How to keep your daughter from becoming the next Kim Kardashian

Nude photos of celebrities are nothing new. But I confess that when I read recently about the new nude magazine cover shots of reality TV star Kim Kardashian, I paid attention. I have no interest in the actual photos themselves; I change enough diapers every day that pictures of other people’s backsides are the very […]

Someday you’ll forget: 4 memory-keeping ideas for busy parents

Will my kids need therapy when they’re older because I’ve failed to properly document their childhood? Don’t laugh — it’s a question that has honestly kept me up at night. Sure, I’ve got pictures of their childhood — maybe a thousand pictures per kid, which is approximately 998 more pictures than my parents ever took […]

Sic it to sickness: How to keep your kids healthy this winter

My sister and her new husband are coming to our house for Thanksgiving this year. They are traveling by plane, and when she emailed their itinerary to me, she also let me know she’d be traveling in a full outbreak-style suit to avoid contracting ebola. I laughed myself silly thinking of her cruising through the […]

7 hacks to planning a simple birthday party

Years ago, the night before my oldest son’s third birthday party, I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning sewing reversible superhero capes for every pint-sized attendee. I made my own pattern for the capes and crafted felt appliqués. It took hours. The kids looked cute running around the basement playing superhero games, […]

Hurry up and slow down

I took my toddler to Target this morning and instead of buckling him into a cart, I let him hold my hand while we walked down the aisles. We paused in the toy aisle, where he was smitten with a $40 talking cat. After checking out — without the cat, to his dismay — we […]

Hey mom, put down the phone: 5 tips for cutting down phone time

I pull up to the curb outside my daughter’s school to drop her off at kindergarten and watch while she walks up to the door. If we’re early — and we’re usually not — I’ve got a minute or so to kill while she waits outside her classroom’s exterior door. Without putting much thought into […]

4 tricks to create Mommy quiet time

Sometimes I lock myself in the bathroom for a few minutes of peace. I don’t do anything, um, bathroom-y in there, although I confess that locking the door and taking a bubble bath in the middle of the day sounds pretty much like the height of luxury. I simply close the door, lock it (this […]

Lessons learned at a Redbox kiosk

It was a Friday night at the end of an exhausting week. My toddler son was sick all week, so instead of taking my kids to the pool every day and soaking up the last of summer like I’d planned, we’d been stuck around home. My husband had been gone every day for work and […]

Call me … maybe?

You know those times when you call to your children but for some reason they don’t respond to your requests? Or when you plead nicely with them to come do their chores already or please wash their hands for dinner, and their lack of response makes you wonder if you should have their hearing tested? […]

Surviving the terrible twos

A few days ago, I was scrolling through my Instagram feed when a picture of a darling 2-year-old girl caught my eye. The mother — whom I was acquainted with in college but would probably not recognize on the street — was gushing about how she loved toddlers and wished she could freeze time. Then […]