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4 New Years Resolutions Everyone in the Family Can Stick To

With the New Year just arriving, you may still be thinking about your resolutions or setting new goals for your personal or family life. Setting goals and making new commitments can benefit both you and your family.

As you think through the changes you’d like to see in your personal and family life, consider these ways you can start the New Year off right.

Work on spending time together – Families tend to spend a lot of time around each other during the holidays, but as soon as they end the hustle and bustle of everyday life takes over and families often find themselves with little time to connect.  The New Year is a great time to set a goal to spend at least one night a week together as a family.  Create a game night or movie night once a week.  Maybe even mix it up and do something different each week.  Have everyone in the family come up with five family activities they want to do, then put them in a bowl and pick them out one by one, scheduling them a week or two in advance.  This way everyone in the family gets to do something they picked to do pretty frequently.

Limit screen time – Parents often complain that all their children want to do is watch TV, play video games or text and talk on their phones.  The amount of time children spend engaged in these activities is disturbing and can be frustrating to parents.  However, parents are often distracted with these devices as well.  How much time do you spend on your smart phone, tablet or laptop at home around meal time and in the evenings?  Challenge yourself to limit the time you spend on these devices when you could be spending time with your children.  Set a new rule that there are no phones at the meal table, parents included.  Spend that 30 minutes engaging in conversation with your children instead.  Your older children may resist at first, but as they see you put away your phone and really connect in conversation with them, they will become less opposed to the idea.

Help others – Building a sense of generosity in your children can be difficult.  Working on projects to help others as a family can be a very memorable experience for them that they cherish for a lifetime.  Serving at a soup kitchen, volunteering to be a part of a city wide clean-up day and signing up to do a charity walk are just a few examples of activities you can participate in with your children that benefit others.  There are also a lot of smaller jobs that you can do together too.  Making a meal for a sick neighbor, raking the leaves for the elderly couple down the street and taking care of a friend’s child for the day so she can rest are simple actions that make a big impact on the outlook your child has toward others.

Take time for yourself – Yes, parents need time on their own.  Everyone knows that.  Making it happen can be challenging, but don’t forget that your child needs some time to himself too.  Whether it is taking a long bath or going for an extended run, be sure to carve out time in the week to spend caring for you. You should also help your child find time for himself as well.  He may have a mound of homework to finish, but he is going to be better equipped to work efficiently if he has a little down time in his day too.

By setting a few goals for the New Year you and your family can build a connection and get off to a great start.

Amazon Baby Registry Start Up Guide

As any brand new expecting couple understands, the process of starting a family is daunting, from conception, to appointments, to dietary restrictions, to the unsolicited advice to the actually prep for getting ready to add a brand new member of the family.

It’s a good thing that there is a lot more technology these days that is taking the headache out of some of the items on the long to-do-list.

In my day, over a decade and more ago, if you wanted to create a baby registry for your family and friends who wanted to help you out with your initial childcare expenses, you had to load yourself and your growing girth in the car, stand in line for a clerk who’d give you a scanning gun and then, you’d have to waddle all over a big box store like Target or Walmart scanning items to add to your list. After that, you had to go back in line and have another clerk upload the list. Phew!

These days, there is Amazon Baby Registry

Here is how it works:

Got to the Amazon Baby Registry landing page and click the “Create a new Baby Registry” button.  You’ll be directed to a page with questions you need to answer, enter the address to have gifts sent to and then create the registry.

After that, you can start adding gifts you want. As you probably already know, Amazon has the Earth’s Biggest Selection of products to fill your house with all the right baby things.

Now, here is a bonus that you get with Amazon that you won’t get with other one off stores, if there is a product that isn’t carried or available on Amazon, you can add it using the University Registry option. It’s a browser plug in and you can add items from any site to your registry.

Mobile On the Go

If you are not at your desktop and you think of something to add, you can do it via the Amazon app on your phone. It allows you to access and update your registry whenever you want, from wherever you are.

Instant Organization

Once you’re done with your registry, Amazon works its magic and organizes it by categories to make it easy for your family and friends to search and decide what they want to buy.

Publish It

Once  you’re done, you can decide if you want to make your registry public so anyone can find it by  searching your name.

You can also limit your registry so that only people with the link can access it. Or you can make it totally private to yourself only as you build it out and before it’s ready for public consumption.

Gifts for Parents Just for Creating the Registry

When you sign up, Amazon sets you up with a welcome box with up to $35 worth of baby products. Yay!

Option for Group Gifters

When your co-workers, or college friends want to go in on one large expensive gift like a stroller, glider or car seat on the list, they can utilize the Amazon group gifting option.

Friends and family or coworkers and associates can pitch in towards the purchase of one costly item.

The average annual cost of diapers for the first year of life for an infant is $550.

Another option for friends who want to help offset the expense of a new baby is for them to contribute to Diaper Fund. Friends and family can contribute any amount of money, up to $550 total, toward diapers.

You’ll get this money in the form of an electronic Amazon gift card, which can be used toward diapers and a variety of other eligible baby products as well.

For Gift Givers

All you have to do is go to the Baby Registry search page and look for the name of the mom-to-be, pick gifts, then check out. You can opt to pitch in towards a large group gift or contribute to the Diaper Fund.

If you don’t have Amazon Prime, you’ll have to spend at least $25 to be eligible for free shipping. If you have Prime, you’ll get the regular, two-day free shipping rates you’ve come to know and love.

What happens if you don’t get all the items on your list

Once you’re registry is closed, or after baby is born, you can go back and order items unpurchased for 10% off or 15% off if you are an  Amazon Prime member.

Returns are Generous and Easy

If you have to return an item, don’t worry about rushing because Amazon gives you an entire year to return items from your list! That’s the best part if you ask me!

And you have no store to drive to, just print out the return label and drop it off at an Amazon location or ship it back through regular carriers like USPS.

Start your Amazon baby registry today

6 Ways to Get the Must Out Your Home for the New Year

clean bedroom and bed

Image by engin akyurt from Pixabay

It’s all too common to come home in the winter to find that far from being fresh and inviting, your home smells and feels dusty, musty, and damp. The air might feel stale, and perhaps even humid or very dry. This is usually the result of a lack of fresh air, as we’ve all had our windows closed for months, a lack of natural light, the dampness that comes with having to have washing dry indoors, and the fact that we’re all spending much more time wrapped up in close quarters at home. 

This mustiness can be annoying, but it can also be a health risk. When the air is stale, there are increased allergens. You might find that colds and other bugs spread more quickly, that you don’t sleep as well, and that you get more coughs or that you have trouble recovering from illnesses. Keeping your home fresh can boost your health, and your mood, as well as making your home more inviting.

1. Open Your Windows for a Little Every Day

When it’s cold outside, we want to keep our windows closed all of the time. But, opening the windows, at least in the rooms that you use the most, for just a few minutes every day could let in some fresh air, and move the stale air out. If it’s more comfortable, do this for a few minutes before you leave the house, so you don’t have to worry about bringing the temperature back up. 

2. Wash Bedding and Towels

clean bedroom

Pixabay – CC0 Licence

If we’re honest, most of us don’t wash our towels and bedding often enough. Try to wash them once a week, it’s more hygienic, and your house will smell and feel much fresher. When it’s not raining, drying washing outside can also help. 

3. Get A/C and Filters Checked

Whether you are using it at the moment or not, this is the perfect time to look at getting your AC unit serviced, and the filters changed. If you need to get emergency ac repair and start running your unit a little every day to keep air moving and fresh. 

4. Add an Air Freshener

An air freshener does precisely what it says on the tin. Sort of. It won’t actually freshen the air. But, it will help it to smell nicer and fresher. If your house feels stale, try to avoid scents that are overpowering or heavy. Light florals, linen, and sweet vanilla can all be effective. 

5. Open Internal Doors

If your home is musty, you want to move the air as much as possible. Keeping internal doors closed can help you to keep warm, but opening them sometimes will help keep air circulating. 

6. Air Soft Furnishings Out

Soft furnishings such as bedding, throws, rugs, sofa covers, curtains, and other heavy fabrics hold on to scents, as well as dust. On a dry, bright day, take these outside and let them hang. Beat the dust off, and let them get some fresh air. They’ll bring it back into the home with them, and the atmosphere will be much lighter. 

It’s a New Year! Let’s start out Must Free, shall we!? (SMILE)

This is How Parents Of Sports Kids Plan to Be Better in 2020 {Survey}

A lot of parents have resolved to be better and more supportive sports moms and sports dads this year, according to a survey by team funding app FlipGive.

The poll of 1,000 American parents whose children are actively involved in organized sports looked to uncover parents’ biggest resolutions related to games, practices, schedules, and healthy lifestyle choices.

First off, some states have parents more committed than others. The top 10 states where parents are making resolutions to be better sports moms and dads are:

  1. Alabama — 73%
  2. Arkansas — 71%
  3. California — 69%
  4. Michigan — 67%
  5. Texas — 66%
  6. North Carolina — 65%
  7. New York — 64%
  8. Maryland — 63%
  9. Virginia — 60%
  10. Arizona — 57%

The survey yielded many other interesting insights on sports parents’ New Year’s resolutions as well.

For example, most parents (37%)  want to spend time helping their child practice/train (37%), with the runner up being arrive on time to games and practices (23%). Following these goals: volunteer to help out with team duties like carpool (21%), and bake time into their family’s schedule for meals together (19%).

Here are some additional findings:

  • Nationwide, 54% of parents plan on making New Year’s resolutions related to their child’s sports involvement this year, and of those, roughly 64% believe they will achieve them.
  • Nearly 63% of U.S. families make resolutions together, with 33% of parents saying their resolution will be taking time once a week to get outside and stay active together.
  • Overall, 30% of the respondents are hoping to support their family members by attending other family member’s matches or games.

“Parents can ensure they keep their resolutions for 2020 by setting forth goals that are realistic and measurable, defining clear steps on how to achieve them, and setting up progress checks points to ensure they’re on track,” FlipGive CEO and Co-Founder Mark Bachman said. “For example, if your resolution is to arrive on time to all games and practices, plan ahead so you and your young athlete can get out the door faster, and keep a log of your arrival times to track progress.”

Sounds great! Good Luck Parents!

10 Ways Parenting Will Be Different in the New Decade {Predictions}

family

family

Now that I’ve reviewed the parenting trends of the past, from a celebrity perspective, let’s take a look at the top parenting trends that we can expect in the coming decade.

From Helicopter to Free Range Parenting, child raising techniques and patterns change over time, with each generation and with scholarship and research.

There really is no right way to accomplish this fine craft and art of raising decent human beings from newborns to young adult.

However, each generation adopts varying habits and patterns that mark their eras in distinctive ways.

The Millennial Generation has already established itself as separate and almost the anti-Generation of its Gen X and Baby Boomer generations that precedes it.

One report indicates that 82% of babies born each year is to Millennial moms, so here is how this new generation of parents are creating new trends for the next decade.

1.More traveling with baby and small children

Parents will be less timid about taking their babies and small children with them while traveling the world.

The concept of traveling with children is not new but was limited to trips to Disney world or roadtrips in the Summer to the Grand Canyon.  Of course, we always had those bold wanderlust or Peace Corp types of parents who were never fearful about picking up their toddler and heading to the Andes but they were in the minority.

A new report by Resonance Consultancy points to the increasing importance of Millennials to the family travel market.

Travel Agents Report states that “44 percent of Millennial travelers take their vacations with the kids in tow,” according to the firm’s new Future of U.S. Millennial Travel report.

More than half (58%) of U.S. Millennials who traveled overnight last year have children under the age of 18 in the household, Resonance learned.

Once kids enter the picture, Millennial parents continue to travel.

Now and in the future, millennial parents will not even hesitate to do so. Many are open to the idea of home schooling their children while living and working as digital nomads abroad. They do not think a child necessarily needs in-school instructions. As a result, we will see more children grow up as students of the world.

The well traveled child is the future.

2. Making home made baby food

In the last decade alone, American spending on baby food has dropped dramatically, and there’s a growing emphasis on making baby food at home.

Millennial parents have grown up in the age of information, and generally speaking, it shows.

They’re not feeding their kids the super-processed, questionably-nutritious baby and kid food of yore, and they want to maintain their principles of eco-minded, earth- and animal-friendly living once they become parents.

And according to Forbes, newer baby food brands are catering to them by partnering up with nutritionists and food engineers to offer sustainable biodynamic food sourcing and processes.

Because Millennial parents of all economic classes want nutritious, organic, science-backed food for their babies , their babies Generation Alpha will be the best fed kids.

3. More Baby wearing, Less investment in multiple strollers

Not long ago, the stroller was a status symbol. Posh parents would have purchased more than two strollers by the time their child reached Kindergarten: a baby carriage or infant car system, a jogging stroller and a toddler stroller.

Nowadays, it’s all about baby-wearing. Also, newer parents have less income and are interested in sustainable living, less waste and extravagance. They do not rely on things like strollers to make a statement.

The term “babywearing” was coined by William Sears, a California-based pediatrician who in 1992 wrote “The Baby Book,” which popularized the concept of “attachment parenting.”

Along with co-sleeping and extended breast-feeding, baby carrying is a core tenet of that parenting approach, which is supposed to nurture a closer attachment between parent and baby and ultimately a healthier child.

The future of parenting is more engaged and connected parents and baby wearing is part of that.

4. Single by Choice/More cohabitation before marriage or without plans to ever marry

Beginning with Generation X, women have been willing to have babies on their own, or elect to just co-habitate with a partner and skip getting married altogether. However, most eventually bowed to societal pressure to find the one, exchange vows and have kids.

Future parents are not willing to be handcuffed by societal rules and tradition.

In 2009, the oldest millennials were in their 20s and as The Wall Street Journal reports, of those older millennials who did have kids, most were unmarried.

And generally, what is norm has changed.

A Pew report finds that just 46% of kids in 2016 were living in a household with two married parents in their first marriage, compared to 61% in 1980.

Generation Z is coming up behind the Millenial generation and are said to be more financially savvy,  the next era of parents will be even less constrained by standards of traditional practices.

Their family planning practices will reflect this prediction.

5. More demanding about Parental Leave

Dads in the Generation Y are also leading the charge in changing gender-based roles in the home, and likewise will change policies related to parental leave.

Millennial dads are more likely to take paternity leave after their spouses or partners have a child.  They are also more likely to be stay at home dads and to baby wear.

A Business Insider report states that “millennial dads are far more likely than their fathers were to take time off work after the birth of a baby” and quotes a 2016 Cornell University study  which asserts that dads who take longer paternal leave tend to be more engaged and involved with their kids in the long run.

That same report indicated that “in 1989, only 10% of these stay-at-home parents were dads, whereas today, stay-at-home fathers account for 17% of such caregivers” and noted that while “women still account for the vast majority of parents in this role, but the numbers are on a course toward more balance.”

Further,it states that in many dual-income millennial homes in which both parents work full time (that’s 46% of households, according to Pew), the mother is the primary earner.

They are making private companies and the government adjust to this new dynamic.

Millennial parents have influenced employers such as Microsoft and Netflix to announce significant expansions to their paid parental leave benefits.

As more private companies start to offer extended family leave and generous paternity leave, future parents from up and down the socioeconomic ladder will start expecting and even demanding adequate time off after welcoming a child to the family.

They will also be more likely to support laws or support candidates that propose new laws standardizing and expanding parental leave policies and laws.

6. More Social Media – Less Friends/Family as Advice Source

Parents will be more comfortable about sharing photos of their children in social media and some with actually brand their children from birth, similar to the way celebrities do now.

About 4 in 5 millennials admit to posting a picture of their kid online at least once, according to a poll conducted by TIME and Survey Monkey. Half of baby boomers, meanwhile, have never posted a photo of their kids online, as well as 30% of Gen X parents.

A Business Insider report about how Millennials use their children as status symbols state they are spending up to $100,000 on things like Instagram-worthy nurseries.

Month-by-Month posts for the first  year of a baby’s life and fabulous color coordinated themed first birthday parties are a thing that Instagram following are made of!

Being that the new generation of parents are more digital conscious and aware, they will continue to skip friends and family for advice and turn to Google.

A recent New York Times article states that millennial parents go to Google, chat rooms, and apps for parenting advice and as one expert told the paper, “Google is the new grandparent, the new neighbor, the new nanny.”

7. Creative Names and Less Formal Names with History and Meaning

“Finding a name that has authentic roots, but is completely undiscovered, is the ultimate baby name status symbol,” Pamela Redmond Satran, a founder of the site Nameberry and author of “The Nameberry Guide to Off-the-Grid Baby Names,” told Alex Williams of The New York Times.

The future of parenting will include names that are not necessarily connected to a family or tradition.

In fact, more Millennial parents are reportedly looking for a name that is not already attached to a domain.

Also, that New York Times article mentions that many millennial parents are giving their kids personal hashtags and YouTube channels.

8. Raising Gender Neutral Children

With more awareness of LGBTQ issues and variances of how members of that community identify, modern and Millennial parents are cognizant about how they label their children. In year’s past, we followed strict gender identity and roles. To put it bluntly, children were either male or female. However, in the coming years, more parents will be open with raising children without subjecting them to or assigning them gender identity.  Future parents may be more likely to let their kids determine for themselves how they want to identify.

A Euromonitor international report states that middle class parents in developed world, especially older Millennials who are becoming parents, are taking a more gender-neutral approach to child raising, using neutral colors and with names suitable for either gender proving popular.

9. Less Religious – More Spiritual or Non Religious

A lot of holidays in secular society have become so homogenized and commercial that it is very easy for a child raised in a non-religious household to not feel left out. Christmas, Easter even Halloween and Day of the Dead which have cultural and spiritual origins are practiced and recognized by people who do not go to Church or follow the initial practices of each holiday.

Four in ten millennials now say they are religiously unaffiliated, according to the Pew Research Center. In fact, millennials (those between the ages of 23 and 38) are now almost as likely to say they have no religion as they are to identify as Christian.

10. They will do what feels right to them 

If any of the aforementioned are clues, the next generation of parenting will go with their gut and not abide by what books, society, the media, the government or advertisers tell them.

In fact, they will be the one dictating what these ancient institutions do!

The next era of parents will be more empowered.

The future is here and it’s going to be quite different!

 

Umoja! Explaining Kwanzaa

Today is the first day of the pan African and African American holiday developed in 1966 by California State University professor and Chair of Africana Studies Dr. Maulana Karenga.

Kwanzaa means “First Fruits of Harvest” in Swahili, a language spoken in many East African nations. It is a seven-day holiday that celebrates seven values, collectively called the Nguzo Saba, a Swahili word for Seven Principles.

These seven communitarian African values are: Umoja (Unity), Kuji-chagulia (Self-determination), Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility), Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics), Nia (Purpose), Kuumba (Creativity), and Imani (Faith).

Kwanzaa table setting traditionally includes seven candles, ears of corn, fruit, a cup and a cultural woven mat all symbolizing principles of the new holiday. Celebrants put a green tablecloth over a table they place in a central place in their home, and place a woven straw mat called a Mkeka on top of that table which symbolizes the historical foundation of African ancestry.

On top the mat is a Kinara (a candle holder) with seven candles. It holds three red candles on the left, three green candles on the right, and a black candle in the center. A candle is lit every day, as during Hanukkah. The black candle is lit first, the lighting then going back and forth between red and green, starting with the outermost candles and moving in to the center.

The table also should include Mazao, crops from the community including a bowl of fruit; Muhindi, an ear of corn for each child in the household;  Zawadi, gifts for the children; and Kikombe cha Umoja, a cup to represent family and community.

Celebrants also decorate their home in the pan African colors of red, green and black. They wear traditional clothes worn by Africans in various countries on that continent, including garments made of Kinte cloth, a material made of interwoven cloth strips worn by the Akan peoples of Ghana.

Starting on December 26, celebrants greet each other by saying “Habari Gani” which is a standard Swahili greeting that means “what is the news?”

The response is whatever day it is – Ujima, Nia, etc.

Kwanzaa table setting traditionally includes 7 candles, ears of corn, fruit, a cup and a cultural woven mat all symbolizing principles of the new holiday.

On the sixth day, or New Year’s Eve, those who celebrate this tradition have a reading or discussion, there is held a program that includes welcoming, remembering, reassessment, recommitment and rejoicing, concluding with a farewell statement and a call for greater unity.

Families exchange gifts on the seventh day.

The values are supposed to be building blocks for the African American community and to teach them of the pan-African connection between people of African descent now living all over the world.

Africans of all faiths can and do celebrate Kwanzaa, i.e., Muslims, Christians, Black Hebrews, Jews, Buddhists, Bahai and Hindus as well as those who follow the ancient traditions of Maat, Yoruba, Ashanti, Dogon, etc. Kwanzaa is not supposed to be an alternative to their religion or faith, but a common ground of African culture.

However, some people who reject the Christmas holiday season’s materialism elect to practice Kwanzaa as an alternative to interject meaning into their holiday season.

Those not from African descent can celebrate Kwanzaa, just as others celebrate Cinco de MayoChinese New Year and Native American pow wows.

The political part of the holiday is that it has been credited with helping African Americans stay bonded and for assisting young people to avoid the trappings and failings of vices and other negative issues that sometimes plague African American communities. Learning and practicing this tradition can help young people realize their potential and value beyond the here and now and connect them to their ancestral roots and to others today who share their collective African heritage worldwide

So, for example, rather than “what would Jesus do?” a Kwanzaa-based query might be, “what would your great ancestors who were once kings and queens of the greatest civilizations and cultures do if they saw you acting a fool and disrespecting their legacy and honor?”

Not bad a message at all.

If you are celebrating Kwanzaa with your children this year, enjoy and Happy Kwanza to you! Umoja!

Merry Christmas: Enjoy These Christmas Movie Scenes

There are fun Christmas movies for kids like Rudolph and Santa Claus is coming to town and then there are those with kids in them that adults enjoy more and are bonafide cult classics. The jokes and wise cracks in them can be appreciated by big kids of the adult variety! ha!

My favorite is A Christmas Story, the Great Depression era themed movie about a kid who just wanted a BB gun for Christmas and his adventures with his friends and trying to convince his parents, the mall Santa, teachers and other adults in his life that a BB gun is NOT a dangerous gift for a kid. The antics are hilarious. I actually remember nagging my parents to take me to see this movie when it was released in 1983.

Here are three other hilarious and funny Christmas scenes that you should watch online or rent this Holiday season:

 

 

Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa Overlap This Year; Also Mixed Religious Households Are Hard

kwanzaa cookies

kwanzaa cookies

Happy Hanukkah!

The first day of the Jewish Festival of Lights started yesterday, December 22. It’s one of the few times that Christmas and Hanukkah will be celebrated the time time. Now if you consider the fact that Christmas technically is 12 days, and Kwanzaa starts on December 26, this year three of the most commonly celebrated holidays during this season will overlap.

Now if you are parents to a mixed religious household or came from one, you know how amazing this could be.

The scholarship and surveys of inter-religious households are scarce however, in  2008, the Pew Research Center found that over one-quarter of people lived in religiously-mixed households.

For certain, over the next 11 years, that number has grown exponentially, probably.

Also, PBS pointed out that most interfaith families usually decide to pick one religion and stick with it; but it also has quotes from families who embrace both.

What happens when a Jew marries a Muslim because in the Jewish faith, the children are supposed to take the religion of the mother and in Islam, the children are to practice dad’s religion?

As a person who grew up with a Catholic mother and a Muslim father, I have experienced this type of inter-religioug home upbringing and have the opinion that interfaith marriages are even harder than interracial ones. [You can fight me on that]

In my dad’s religion, the children are supposed to practice Islam but up until I was about 5 years old, he didn’t actively practice but when my sister was born and after our Islamic “Naming Ceremony”, my mom decided that she didn’t want to raise religion-less kids so she took us kids to church. For 12+ years, I was a Christian until I turned 17 and my dad found Allah once again and started taking us to Arabic school, and a cultural program in the Washington, DC area.

What a shock!

At that age of advanced adolescence, my Faith set as a Christian had already set in and I would question the scribes and the teacher’s interpretation of the Qua-ran, which I found conflicted from the Holy Book.  That turned me off and confused me so much so that I looked forward to going off to college the next year so I could practice NO RELIGION and be Agnostic!

It was liberating at first but then it got depressing as I started questioning life, the afterlife, if it existed.

My First Christmas shirts are plentiful for baby but you rarely see My First Chanukah onesies or clothing and that’s why I was digging this Israeli-made Baby’s First Chanukah Organic Body Suit as part of Wild Dill’s Hebrew Baby Collection.

It was very lonely and scary.

I started to study afterlife experiences, and studied Faiths of the world, and eventually met and married my current husband who is a Catholic and I fell back into my original religion.

I do not believe my experience is rare. I think children in mixed religion homes suffer. If you want to do it, go at it but know it’s going to be a challenge.

Writer Hannah Werthern wrote about her concern in a Parents.com piece:

It is tempting to me to invite Santa and Hanukkah Harry to our house every December, but I worry that my kids will get confused. Will they think everyone celebrates a mishmash of holidays? I will say it was truly surprising for me to see the number of books on celebrating both holidays — someone even made a “Hanukkah and Christmas: Picture Books Featuring Interfaith Celebrations” Pinterest board! (Wait, is everyone already celebrating a mishmash of holidays without me?) I also worry that the meaning behind each holiday will get lost along the way. Hanukkah is actually not that big of a deal to my family, so I’m OK with Santa stealing the show a little bit. but I’m not going to be happy when the Easter Bunny comes knocking at the door during Passover Seder. For every family, the holidays work a bit differently. I guess we’re just going to have some growing pains.

I can appreciate her concern.

Let’s continue this conversation @Bellyitch on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Or @JayJayGhatt on Twitter and Insta

Parenting Experts Debate If Parenting Is Simply Overated {Video}

The age old nature v. nurture debate took a different turn a couple of months ago during a live debate held at New York City’s Kaye Playhouse and live streamed before becoming part of a syndicated public radio show and podcast called “Intelligence Squared US“.

The side arguing against the motion “Parenting Is Overrated” won.

Arguing in favor of the motion are behavioral geneticist Robert Plomin and psychology professor and twin researcher Nancy Segal. Arguing against the motion are psychology professor Paige Harden – also a twin researcher, who had reached very different conclusions – and parenting counselor and journalist Ann Pleshette Murphy.

“Research over 40 years has convinced most scientists that inherited DNA differences account for about 50 percent of the differences between children on all psychological traits: their personalities, their mental health and illness, and their cognitive abilities and disabilities,” moderator John Donvan says. “What amazes me is that if you look at all the parenting books that are out there, and there are very popular books, not one mentions genetics, and that discrepancy is enough to say parenting is overrated because it discounts the importance of genetics.”

It’s about an hour and a half long but so worth the watch:

 

Small Business Saturday: Support My Partners and Brands

It is Small Business Saturday!

Last year, I encouraged my readers to support the brands for which I am an affiliate for but this year, I’ve opened up three online shops and am offering discounts and deals in hopes that you will continue to support this platform and purchase from me.

This year, I also opened up a consulting company, JayJayGhatt, where I counsel, consult,  guide and train those who want to earn a living in social media or blogging to do it. Sign up for a consultation here!

Shop by Bellyitch – The Mom Charm Shop

My Mom Charm Store is an online store of  this Parenting blog and it sells novelty tees, and lifestyle items like mugs, pillows, a fun quirky clock and more.

My Etsy shop Digital Publishing Academy sells legal, marketing and productivity templates for online digital business owners like Podcasters, YouTubers, Bloggers, Vloggers and eCommerce shop owners!

Get 20% off any item when you purchase today, Small Business Saturday thru Cyber MONDAY! ENTER Promo CODE: ETSYCYBER2018 at checkout for discount!

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Also, I’m offering a steep discount of $20 OFF for my Blogger’s Legal and Marketing tool kit, regularly priced $29! This Brings the price down to $9!!!! Available to the First 25 buyers!

marketing kit for 9 bucks


discount valuation ebook

Get my Ebook on “How to Valuate Your Blog for Venture Capital Sale” for just $2.99, which is 60% off the Original Price. GET IT HERE! 

We are new

Get Over 500 Stock Photography Images from Picnoi for $34.00 OFF the Original Price!

USE CODE CYBERWEEK at Check out of CLICK HERE!

 

THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT!

Photo: Gift Habeshaw