Tuesday, November 20, 2012
How much is too much to spend on children and teens? We want to hear your thoughts, Northbrook.
As the holiday shopping season goes into full swing, some people are maxing out their credit cards to pay for presents and others are setting budgets and sticking with them. Scour just about any Facebook stream or stop in a local coffee shop and chances are you’ll hear parents debating the merits of setting spending limits. Or, you'll hear them lamenting about just how much they've already spent. The ideas for a perfect limit do seem to vary rather greatly. Some parents say $100 per child is more than enough. Others tend to lean toward much more generous figures. After all, there’s nothing like seeing a child’s eyes light up as they unwrap gift after gift. And that’s what we want to hear from you about, Northbrook! Do you set spending …
Saturday, November 10, 2012
A son's annual check-up gets his mother wondering what happens between raising the first child and the last.
The other day, my son kicked me out of his doctor’s appointment. Somewhere around the age of acne explosions, smelly feet and hair product, pediatric annual check-ups include an option for a parent-free zone to promote a personal discussion with a health care professional. This is a great idea, and I think adolescents should take full advantage of this opportunity. Correction: this is a great idea, and I think other people’s kids should take full advantage of it. My kids? They have nothing to hide. As a seasoned parent when it comes to these "special" visits, I was well prepared. This was my third child, after all. I like to think of myself as a fairly liberal, tolerant and accepting person, who prides herself in keeping communication …
Sunday, May 20, 2012
Our bloggers did not shy away from controversy this week. Here's a round-up of some of our best blogs of the week.
Glenview Patch’s Local Voices bloggers took on some hot topics this week, including the fate of moderate Republicans and “attachment parenting.” If you’d like to join their ranks to start blogging, you can sign up here.
Thursday, May 10, 2012
A Mother's Day reminder of the joys of motherhood
Mother's Day is this Sunday, just in case you were too busy being a Mother to notice. It got me thinking about how sometimes I'm so busy, tired, and stressed that I don't stop to appreciate why being a Mom is worth it. Some days it's easier to focus on the negatives and I ask myself why did I go through all of the pain, nausea, sleepless nights, insecurity, and the extra 10 pounds that won’t go away? So, I wrote a post on Why Being a Mom is Worth It that I wanted to share. But more importantly, I'd love to hear from you. Why Do You Love Being a Mom? Please comment below and let's create a great list of why Motherhood is amazing. The reminder is a nice gift to ourselves. I want to wish everyone a Happy Mother’s Day. I hope your day is …
Tuesday, February 21, 2012
Frustrations lead to feelings of being An Awful Parent.
I am not a patient person. And I am very stubborn. That is not a great combination when you are trying to teach a child with autism how to tie their shoes. Tying shoes a particular challenge for kids with autism Shoelaces. Is there a worse form of torture for parents? I know that teaching any child how to tie their shoes can be a challenge, but it is particularly hard when you have a child with autism. Many autistic children have difficulty with fine motor skills. Many also have trouble following multi-step directions. My son has come a long way in both regards – for instance, Kai is now able to work with small Lego pieces and enjoys building somewhat complicated sets that take 40 steps or more. But when it comes to tying his shoelaces, …
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
What really frosts parents of autistic kids.
Before I became a parent, I thought I was an expert on how to raise kids. And I was very “generous” with my knowledge. Now the shoe is on the other foot. And I understand just how annoying I must have been. I know that people mean well when they give you advice. I sure did. And it’s not that I think that I’m a perfect parent who couldn’t use some constructive feedback from time to time. I know that many times an outsider can help you see things that you miss by being involved in all the day-to-day rigors. Sometimes it helps to get another opinion or to talk things out to help crystalize your own thoughts. But (and you knew there was a ‘but’ coming, didn’t you?) I think sometimes people speak without truly understanding your situation. …
Saturday, December 10, 2011
The perpetual problem of rule clarification.
I used to think that by a certain age, kids learned to make good choices. My mistake. And though my kids have forbidden me from using them as examples in this article, I have no problem outing my friends and their kids. (You guys don’t mind, right?) It seems no matter what our offspring end up doing, they always claim the problem was that we never told them exactly what not to do. A good friend of mine has a son with autism. Her son, I’ll call him H., is a bright 13-year-old boy who, during these fabulous years of puberty, is becoming more and more independent. After deplaning at O’Hare a few weeks ago, H. announced he needed to use the restroom. My friend took her son to the entrance of the men’s room, and began going down the list of …
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Autistic son’s sleep issues tire dad out.
I heard the familiar knock on our bedroom door. It was 2 a.m. I don’t groan anymore when I hear it. I’m too used to it. I just get out of bed and go into the hallway. My son was waiting for me. He was wide-awake. Sleep issues among children with autism The parents of most children endure about a year of poor sleep when their kids are babies. But I’ve hardly had a night of solid sleep since I became a dad. Kai rarely sleeps through the night. When he was young, I thought that Kai’s sleep issues might have been due to an over-dependence on his mother. Let’s take a tough love approach and don’t coddle him, I advocated. But since then I’ve learned that sleep problems are common for kids with autism. Our son has been seeing a doctor that …
Monday, November 22, 2010
Before the 2 a.m. feedings, diaper changes, teething, potty training, skinned knees, birthday parties, first days of school and everything in between, spend time to find yourself and do what you have always wanted to do.
As I sit to write this column, I'm listening to Change by the Lightning Seeds and I'm instantly reminded of the trips I took to the south of France during the mid-1990s. "…You're never going to be like all those fools You're coming out tonight There's nothing to lose You're going to give it all a try Don't ever change…" This song was always on my playlist during the plane ride to Paris and the train trip through the countryside, and the lyrics were my mantra at the time. I was in my early 30s and carefree. I became nearly fluent in French. I toured the small villages and towns of Provence and soaked in the ethereal light that has long attracted so many painters and photographers to the region. I stayed with friends, shopped specialty …