All posts in Parenting

how to set up a blog or website

How to Set Up a Blog (or Website)

If you are thinking of setting up a blog or even a simple website, it’s becoming the same thing. You can set up a blog to use as a website for your small business. Here’s how in three easy steps:

Step 1: Choose Your Blogging Platform. Spoiler alert: Use Self Hosted WordPress.

Step 2: Secure Your Name and Host. Spoiler alert: Make sure your name is available on Twitter and other social media platforms. Use BlueHost.

Step 3: Configure and Design Your Site. Spoiler alert: Make sure your blog/website theme is Responsive.

Ready? Let’s go! Read more…

Visiting Quebec City with Kids

Planning a Visit to Quebec City with Kids

My son loves Canada. He was the first to declare that he’s moving to Canada if Trump wins, and his sisters agreed. We’ve been to Canada a few times; it’s a road trip for us and we’ve visited Montreal, Toronto, and Ontario for the Women’s World Cup.

Quebec City is considerably farther from our previous Canadian trips, but now our kids are old enough to handle the car ride. Instead of worrying about kids melting down in the car, we are a little worried by our inability to speak French. We are going to have to take a quick crash course, especially on food for reading menus.

My husband has been reading a guide book on Quebec City, but this is what I came up with.

 

Quebec City Day 1

aquarium de quebec

image from Wikipedia

1. Aquarium du Quebec

We like aquariums. This one sounds great: Aquarium du Québec is a public aquarium located in the former city of Sainte-Foy in Quebec City. The 16-hectare facility is home to more than 10,000 animals representing more than 300 species. Read more…

My Blogging Journey at Year 7

My Blogging Journey at Year 7

I was a neighborhood party the other night when someone I knew asked me about how my blog was going. I don’t think she was looking for “fine, blogging is great!” It might have been more of a career question: are you making money blogging? So I thought it was time for an update on my blogging life.

Blogging is a Journey not a Destination.

I started blogging nearly seven years ago with an idea to turn it into a business. I had other ideas for a birthday gift registry for family members to go in on expensive gifts but I am not a programmer and didn’t want to hire one.

Initially, I wanted to share the after schooling curriculum I pieced together to catch my oldest up in first grade when her teacher was absent so often that there were subs for subs. It took a while, but I eventually found my voice and rekindled my love of children’s books. It wasn’t long before I put a stake in the ground and declared that I was dedicating my efforts to promoting diversity, inclusive, and multicultural books. Multicultural Children’s Book Day came out of that and with it, the joy of working with Valarie Budayr at Jump Into a Book and Becky Flansberg of Frantic Mommy.

Multicultural Children's Book Day Read more…

Teaching Kids About Money: Summer Curriculum

Teaching Kids About Money: Summer Curriculum

Forbes has a great article on money lessons you should be teaching your kids, with milestones for ages 5, 10, and 15. Let’s see how I’m doing with my kids:

Money Lesson Goals for 5 Year Olds

  • Savings Goal – a savings goal has three elements: (1) what you want to buy, (2) when you want to buy it and (3) how much it will cost at that time.
  • Bank – a place that helps us safely store, organize and manage our money
  • Check – a way to pay for items where we write a note asking our bank to send our money to someone to pay for our purchases
  • Bills – notes letting us know how much we owe for our purchases
  • Trade Off  – A decision we have to make when we are considering whether to save for something or spend our money

money lessons for kids Read more…

therapy dog training

Training Our Dog to Be a Therapy Dog

PickyKidPix came up with the idea to turn our Golden Retriever into a therapy dog. Her initial reason was sneaky. She wanted to bring him into grocery stores and on airplanes. A therapy dog certification is not enough for this, so she decided that this would be one way that she would do service work. I thought it was a great idea. I told her that I would drive her, but she would have to figure it all out herself.

Training Our Dog to Be A Therapy Dog

She researched and found a place in the Berkshires, two and a half hours from us where we could bring him to be certified. I thought that they would just check to make sure he was a friendly dog but, boy, was I wrong.

Training Our Dog to Be A Therapy Dog Read more…

KylaBorg on Flickr, under Creative Commons

It’s Not Easy Being a Girl

Grasshopper and Sensei‘s good friend, Sarah Groustra, also a 10th grader, just got published in Women’s eNews. Her piece, It’s Not Easy Being a Girl, really nails what life is like for a teen girl these days. I wanted to share it with you:

KylaBorg on Flickr, under Creative Commons

Image, KylaBorg on Flickr, under Creative Commons

It’s Not Easy Being a Girl

You are female.

You wake up in the morning and get ready to go to school. Picking out clothes can sometimes be a little emotional for you. Like 91 percent of other girls, you are unhappy with the way you look. Doing your makeup isn’t easy either. The day that you ran out of time to put any on, someone called your skin gross. A few days later, your friend tells you you’d be prettier if you just didn’t wear so much makeup. You glance at the fashion magazines on your nightstand, where Kerry Washington or Emma Watson or it doesn’t really matter who is laughing at you with a frozen, glossy smile. They never had to worry about this, did they?

You arrive at school. Your first class is calculus. The class has more girls than boys, so you have some close friends in the class who have been helping you with your homework the past few days. This unit has been particularly challenging. At the end of class, you walk over to the teacher’s desk to grab some extra review sheets. A male classmate of yours is trying to argue his way into a C- on a recent test; he is doing far worse than you are. Before you make it to the door the teacher catches you and says, “I see you’ve been having some trouble lately. Are you sure this class is the right place for you? You may want to think about switching down a level.” You politely assure him you’ll stay where you are. Read more…

Personal Finance: Summer Learning Fun for Kids

Personal Finance: Summer Learning Fun for Kids

This post is sponsored by T. Rowe Price and Scholastic. The ideas and opinions are my own.

I am so happy to be joining Scholastic and T. Rowe Price to help parents teach their kids personal finance. I noticed from my kids that each came forth into the world with an innate sense of money.

My oldest, Grasshopper and Sensei, is an artist, and I’ve worked with her on how to earn money using her talent. She sells hand painted greeting cards, and is thinking about expanding her business by printing T-shirts. Her inclination towards money is:

  • Spend it if you have it (thus she needs reinforcement to save).
  • Art supplies are more important than food (thus she needs to work on her choices).

Grasshopper and Sensei hand painted greeting card business Read more…

Six Ways to Cultivate a Charitable Spirit in Kids

Six Ways to Cultivate a Charitable Spirit in Kids

Dr. Michele Borba has a new book out tomorrow and I’m thrilled she’s here today with ideas of how to get your spread kindness. I have some ideas for Random Acts of Kindness and a DIY Random Acts of Kindness Advent Calendar as well.

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Kaila is not yet four, but the San Diego preschooler already has the makings of an empathetic children. When I banged my toe at a party, the three- year-old was the first to my side. I watched her size things up, look carefully at my “injury,” and then empathize. Her face switched from inquisitiveness to concern, and then she looked up with the biggest eyes, and said, “I sorry ’bout your toe. You need Band-Aid for your owie? I help you.”

Kaila may have missed a few words, but her message displayed a charitable spirit even at a young age. And it was because her parents were raising her to care. Research contends that though our kids are hard-wired to empathize and care about others, the traits of humanness must be nurtured. And the best ways to do so are always spontaneous and don’t cost a dime. Here are six science-backed tips to cultivate children’s hearts from my latest book, UnSelfie: Why Empathetic Kids Succeed In Our All-About-Me World.

Read more…

MY CAR DOES WHAT for New Drivers #DashboardBlitz

MY CAR DOES WHAT for New Drivers #DashboardBlitz

Grasshopper and Sensei is now old enough to drive but it scares her. She sometimes gets the gas pedal confused with the brake. That’s scary for both of us!

learning to drive

Her younger sister, PickyPidPix, is always trying to get us to let her drive the car. She’s only 14 years old though and likes to practice by driving a golf cart.

MY CAR DOES WHAT for New Drivers #DashboardBlitzRead more…