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Articles in Mandy Cowley, Nicole Green, Party and Leah Conti

On Being a Stepmom

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I spent years filled with so much frustration, trying to figure out the “right” way to step-parent. In all of my striving, I eventually determined that “right” is undefinable in this role.... Read full article

The Pain of Our Children

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We do everything in our parental power to protect our children. Desperately wanting to prevent pain. Yet, pain is inevitable. All of my children have been hurt not only by the world but by people they love, including me.... Read full article

A Life Worth Following

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I cannot hope my children will be unconditionally loving parents without loving them unconditionally. I cannot hope my children will be authentic in their relationships while pretending in my own.... Read full article

Slumber Parties: From A to Zzz's

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Hosting an overnight party can be an eye-opener. Slumber is rarely on the agenda and parents can count on getting zero sleep, or just a few hours of sleep—if you are lucky. ... Read full article

Smile or Else! A Friendly Guide to Taking Family Photos and Keeping Your Sanity

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Despite the effort you put forward, it is easy to wonder if it is worth the hassle and if there is any way to make it through without feeling like you’re family is enduring cruel and unusual punishment. I am here to assure you that indeed, there is. ... Read full article



Valentine's Day Party

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February is a great time to focus on family fun and traditions by hosting a Valentine’s Day party.... Read full article

Why Can't I Have a Cupcake?

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It’s the weekend, and if you’re a parent of young children, you know what that means—birthday parties. Every parent knows the hurried hustle involved when preparing to attend a child’s birthday party. But while most parents only have to prepare one “... Read full article

Stress-Free First Birthday Parties

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When Caroline Orange turned one year old, her mother, Lindsay, thought she was prepared. “We made sure we had a baby-sized cake just for her and we even laid out a big plastic mat for her to sit on while she ate it.”Unfortunately, when the delighte... Read full article

Birthday Party Etiquette 101

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Whether you are the host or a party guest, these events are a great opportunity to teach a few basic rules of etiquette to ensure your child is one that is invited back again and again. ... Read full article

Shedding Light On December Birthdays

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December birthdays often get swept into the hoopla of the holidays.... Read full article

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