Sibling Harmony

Peace and Joy: 5 Tips for Sibling Harmony

Let’s face it – sibling spats are a part of life. 

In fact, sibling rivalry is not only inevitable, it’s a healthy way for kids to learn how to compromise and navigate relationships.

But on the downside, the constant bickering can also wreak havoc on daily life, not to mention Mom’s and Dad’s nerves.

Our goal is to achieve at least some measure of sibling harmony, right?

I know that may sound like an impossible dream, but it’s absolutely do-able with these five Sibling Harmony tips:
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Naughty or Nice?

Getting good holiday behavior from your kids.

better holiday behavior

First stop: your tween’s dance rehearsal. Then, a visit to a local charity. Next, it’s last-minute shopping for gifts, making cookies for your eight year-old’s class party, and then a holiday dinner – and that’s just your Saturday!

A day like that can often drive even the merriest of people to make a less-than-polite grab for the store’s last set of lights or play chicken over that coveted front-row parking space. When kids get thrown into that mix of traveling, visits from relatives, and holiday events – all on top of their normal school work and activities- it’s a winter miracle that they have the energy left to behave at all!

The fact is that kids wear out faster than adults, and that tired or mentally over-stimulated children are the ones most likely to act out or throw fits. Read More

‘Tis the season for saying “Thanks!”

hands holding a heart

The holidays offer countless wonders: quality time with loved ones, the joy of family traditions, and at least a few weeks where people are particularly nice to one another. But nestled between the “Secret Santa” gift swaps and the glittering candles, the holidays give us yet another amazing thing – the opportunity to give our kids an attitude of gratitude.

Teaching our children to live a grateful life can’t be accomplished in a few short weeks, but the holiday season offers kids and parents alike countless opportunities to practice giving extra thanks to the people who deserve it – and need it – most. And this is the gift that gives back! Research repeatedly shows that gratitude-rich people score higher in happiness and optimism and have fewer instances of stress and depression.

So don’t wait to make this your New Year’s resolution – use the tips below to start your family on the trail to thankfulness today!
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To Lose or Not to Lose? Board Game Strategies for Playing with Kids

Dice and board game pieces in a big pile
Dice and board game pieces in a big pile
Dice and board game pieces in a big pile

Guest Post from Ellen Notbolm, author of Ten Things Every Child With Autism Wishes You Knew

Playing board games is a great way to have fun and bond as a family. But any game begs the question: do you let your kids win so they feel good about themselves and stay interested, or do you play fair—and win sometimes—at the risk of discouraging them?

Before you stack the deck for the next round of Candyland, keep reading for some helpful pointers below: Read More

Forget It! How to be done with everyday forgetfulness.

forgetful boy


verdue library books. Smelly gym clothes. Permission slips rushed to school as the field-trip bus is about to pull away. When will kids learn to remember the things they need before the guilty, “Um, I forgot…” phone call?

As you may have heard before, “A child who always forgets has a parent who always remembers.” Which is to say, every time you rescue your kids with constant reminders or by bailing them out when they forget, you actually do them a disservice, as they never feel the sting of their forgetfulness and learn to take responsibility.

I’m not talking about the occasional slips of mind. You know you have a real problem when you’re dropping off a lunchbox or musical instrument on a weekly basis for one of your kids. Here’s how to solve it:
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5 Steps to Better Manners

well mannered girl

What’s the magic word?

What do you say?

Close your mouth!

Sometimes you feel like a parrot in your attempts to get your kids to use their manners. You’ve worked on “please” and “thank you” since they were two—so why do they seem to need a refresher course on a daily basis?

In parenting education circles, we often say, “A child who always forgets has a parent who always remembers,” which means that constant reminders aren’t likely to change your kids’ behavior long-term. Fortunately, it’s entirely within your reach to raise a child who says “excuse me” even when you’re not around.

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