Helping Your Teens with Career & Self-Discovery

I was at a family gathering recently.  An elderly relative asked my teenage nephew, "So, what do you want to be when you grow up?"  My nephew looked over at me hoping I'd rescue him from the situation.  I didn't.  But I also recognized the pressure a teen can feel when that question is posed.

HOW your teen eventually answers this question for him/herself is important.

But WHEN your teen answers this question is even more important.  If your teen tries to answer this question too soon...without accurate self-discovery or sufficient exploration of the vast array of career options...your teen could narrow his/her focus too soon.

WHAT can you do as a parent to help this process of self-discovery and career exploration?  Here are my top 3 tips… Read More »

Fries with That?


French fries, pommes frites, chips…or just fries…are indisputably one of the most popular foods in America with the average American consuming nearly 29 pounds of fries a year. Read More »

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The Top Ten Reasons Exercise Should Be Part of Your Workday

It’s mid-afternoon.  You just ate lunch.  You were up early with the kids and had 4 back to back meetings today and now you need to mark off a few more items on your “To Do” list before the end of the day, but when you sit down, you’re suddenly tired.  Sleepy.  And not motivated. Rather than being super productive as you’d planned, you muscle through the rest of the day guzzling coffee and obsessively checking the clock counting down ‘til quittin’ time.  We’ve all been there.  Why not head to the gym?  Read More »

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Decode Your Produce


Do you ever wonder why those pesky little stickers are on fruits and vegetables? Other than to annoy us while trying to meticulously peel them off without leaving behind sticky glue? Those stickers are called price look-up or PLU codes and they actually do serve a purpose and can help us make more informed decisions at the grocery store. Read More »

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Parenting Adult Children

I was at a Saturday team-building workshop two weeks ago with folks from a non-profit I work with, and in a small group we were invited to write down 5 questions to ask each other.  I received a total of 15 but only had to answer 2 (so it was safe :)), but there was one I didn’t choose that kept haunting me….  “If I were to ask one of your children, ‘If you could change one thing about your parent, what would it be?’, what would your child say?” 

My “children” are now 28 & 30, and I almost dismissed it with the thought, “That train has left the station.”  After this weekend, I’ve decided I was wrong.  It’s still a good question to consider…and maybe even ask!

This past weekend two things happened.  I was very involved in the wedding of my “in-town daughter”.  No, she is not my biological daughter, but I’ve been a mother-figure to her these past seven years in the absence of her mother who lives out-of-state.  The other event that happened over the weekend is that one of my sons got engaged.

During the past few months, I have carefully observed my “in-town” daughter’s emotional reaction to her parent’s response to the engagement and wedding plans.  I also reflected on my parent’s reaction to my engagement to my spouse (34 years ago).  And suddenly, I had the opportunity to respond to my son’s engagement news. Read More »

Benefits of Vinegar- Health or Hype?


Vinegar has been around for thousands of years, and it’s been used medicinally for likely just as long. We've all heard the “wives tales” about what vinegar can do (and seen the crazy claims on the internet). But does it really work?  Vinegar has been researched for a while now, so luckily we do have some evidence of its potential health benefits. Read More »

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50 Screen-Free Activities You Can Do with Your Family

Unplugging for a week:  Crazy or possible?!

How many of you have had that day, weekend or week when you ask yourself “what else can the kids do?”  Not only for their sanity but for yours too!

We all want the same things for our kids:  to stay as active as possible, to eat as healthy as possible, and to keep their brains as alive as possible.  Sure we all love to sit and watch a favorite TV show or movie, and there’s nothing wrong with that.  It’s those days of multiple hours of TV watching or being on an electronic device that we should be concerned about.  Yes I know at times having some of those devices have saved the day, but can we spend our time more wisely? Read More »

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The Amazing Avocado!

I love avocados! The creamy texture seems to go perfect with just about anything! My favorite combo is avocado and egg, they are a match made in heaven! But avocados are great on salads, in sandwiches, wraps, smoothies, soups, and even desserts! Luckily avocados are also a nutritional powerhouse! Read More »

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Choosing a College Major

Most of you probably don’t know this, but my undergraduate major was geography.  That’s right, geography.  Is it because I love maps?  Well, actually, yes, I do, and my friends and family can tell you that my “go-to” present is always the most recent edition of the Atlas of the World by Oxford University Press.  Every family should have one!  But, I digress.

No, I didn’t choose geography just because of my fascination with maps.  I chose it by default.  By the time I hit the second semester of my sophomore year and had to decide on a major, I was in a crisis.  I loved learning and I enjoyed every course I selected.  My advisor looked at my transcript and was baffled.  German, Political Science, American Folk Literature, several social Geography courses, Anthropology, 3-D Design, Beginning Drawing, American History Post WW1[i], and, of course, the requisite Gen Ed requirements in English, Math, and Science.  I had one week to finalize my major.   I went back to my dorm room and cried.  Read More »

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Laughter for Body, Mind and Spirit

IMG_1860A deep-rooted belly laugh can do so much for your body, mind and spirit. Just the other night, my 15 year old daughter was shredding some items for me so she could earn a little spending money. The shredder indicated six pages maximum, but it really should have said one or less. Needless to say this rinky-dink shredder that was buy one, get one was having some difficulties. After it regurgitated paper in all directions, my daughter unplugged the shredder and grabbed the tool box. I love her persistence. She started to remove these miniature screws that held it together. Out of nowhere, an oily substance and glue spewed out. I still find it humorous that fading dollar signs for a task not completed can make a teenager do whatever it takes to get flimsy equipment in working order. I sat down on the floor and watched her meticulously dismantle this device of mangled paper. After grabbing the scissors, she finally got some free. In her anxiousness, she turned it on. Yeah! It magically spit the remaining paper out as she h ad it in reverse. Then a strange thing happened. Read More »

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