Category - blog

1
Hooray for Summer (Exclamation Point): Steps to a Successful Break (Question Mark)
2
Homeschool: a Year in Review
3
Are Chemical Sunscreens Safe?
4
Time to Spread My Wings and Twitter. Uh, I Mean Tweet.
5
Why the Arts are Important
6
Why Date Night is Important
7
What Cold Remedies Really Work?
8
The Common Cold: Your Questions Answered
9
What We Need to Know About Cell Phone Etiquette
10
Beware of Hidden Allergens

Hooray for Summer (Exclamation Point): Steps to a Successful Break (Question Mark)

    It’s here!  Summer break.  Honestly, my head is spinning the school year went by so fast.  And I feel totally unprepared.  So I dug up this post from 2015 (which also earned a repost last year) to help refresh my brain on how to (and not!) navigate summer with kids.  And I hope it helps you, too: Two years ago, as the school year drew to an end, I wrote a post that received some flak.  In Hooray for Summer? (In retrospect, Horrors, It’s Summer! would have been a fun title…) I described the difficult transition for parents, myself…

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Homeschool: a Year in Review

Homeschool is out for the summer!  We did it.  We really, really did it.  175 full days.  Sometimes we hummed along without a hitch, and some days drug on.  And on.  And on.  In other words, our school year was much like a traditional one, with ups and downs.  And here are some of them: The “ups”: I got to spend lots of time with my kids.  Every day.  We haven’t spent this much time together since before the kids started all-day Kindergarten.  I feel like I know them so much better in their “tween” stage; I’ve had more time…

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Are Chemical Sunscreens Safe?

Summer, summer, summer.  Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen.  While sunscreen is recommended year-round to prevent burns, aging and the increased risk of skin cancer, in the warmer months we dress less and slather up even more.  Have you ever wondered whether those chemical sunscreens are safe to use in such large-and-frequent proportions?  In this repost from July of 2015, I describe some of the myths and facts surrounding the totally-tubular and ubiquitous poolside essentials. Everyone notices when someone sports that gorgeous sun-bronzed skin from a sunny vacation.  But my family?  The people who get sunburned through car windows?  We return from a…

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Time to Spread My Wings and Twitter. Uh, I Mean Tweet.

It was four years ago that I attended a dry yet helpful seminar on learning WordPress.  Soon after I sat down at my laptop and built a bare-bones website on which to enter my musings on being a parent.  Fast-forward a whole presidential term later and no one is more surprised than me that in a few short weeks Pulseonparenting.com will reach 200 posts. When I hit publish on  “Hello World (the sequel)”  back in 2013 I thought I was embarking on a fun, new hobby that indulged my love for writing.  I never expected to still be here on…

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Why the Arts are Important

The C scale wafts through the house from the front room, my son warming up his piano fingers for “When the Saints Go Marching In.”  He provides the background melody for the fiddle piece his brother is working through for a recital.  Then joining in is my daughter, learning the first few measures of Bach’s “Minuet I” on her violin.  It’s a discordant masterpiece.  No dueling pianos here, but rather a solo piano fending off violins attacking from two separate fronts. Whew.  Just another afternoon of music practice. I have long been a lover of the arts, having sacrificed my…

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Why Date Night is Important

  We had to think about it for a moment.  Then we remembered:  it had been four years since my husband and I took a trip together, just the two of us.  How time flies, just like we were, taking an early morning flight to Boston.  It’s not like we haven’t had the occasional “date night” but there’s something about the freedom a couple has when they can do things on their own schedule for more than a few hours at a time. Author Ayelet Waldman (Bad Mother:  a Chronicle of Maternal Crimes, Minor Calamities, and Occasional Moments of Grace, 2009)…

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What Cold Remedies Really Work?

A couple weeks ago, in The Common Cold:  Your Questions Answered, we looked at some of the lesser-known (but widely-wondered) aspects of that pesky triad of runny nose, sore throat and sneezing (etc.).  Now let’s dig in to the burning question: What remedies really work to cure the common cold? Well, the bad news is no medication or remedy cures the common cold. And unfortunately, there are no prospects on the horizon.  But the good news is there are options that help minimize symptoms and give relief while the virus runs its course: For the full gamut of symptoms:  Rest and…

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The Common Cold: Your Questions Answered

It’s morning.  I’m getting ready for school and hear my family in the kitchen.  My husband’s rattling cough, punctuated by wall-shaking sneezes, echoes through the house.  My daughter harmonizes with a wheezy, low melody.  My older son, who normally sneezes three times in a row on a good day, seems determined to break the world’s record for ah-choos in rapid succession.  And my younger son?  Still out “cold” and I’m just letting him sleep.  As for me, I’m dragging and achy and my throat is sore.  I don’t have the sonorous coughing or sneezing like the rest of my family…

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What We Need to Know About Cell Phone Etiquette

  There’s an episode of the sitcom New Girl where lovably pedantic Schmidt pulls out his ringing mobile.  Incredulous, he says, “What?  My phone hasn’t rung in two years!” There’s plenty of truth in that one-liner.   We have Skype.  We have FaceTime.  And the too-convenient ability to text message.  Really, who talks on the phone anymore?  Mobile phones are hardly the simple chatting devices of ages past; they are fun-sized, portable computer devices, a far cry from the spring-tethered rotary dial model and the cordless version my family used to lose under the couch cushions.  We communicate so differently…

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Beware of Hidden Allergens

Remember Snackwells?  The near-miracle treat that contains no fat?  Back when we were told that fat, any fat, in our diets would surely lead to our artery-clogging demise, these cookies were a godsend to those of us with a raging sweet tooth.  And I remember my indulgence, eating almost a whole box of the devil’s food variety, proudly avoiding an eminent heart attack by eating dessert so wisely. But now, times have changed and the “devil” in the name of those (let’s face it) tasteless, half-dessicated cookies has an updated meaning.  Most of the calories come from sugar (satanic carbs!) and…

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