Ideas for Nurturing Curiosity and Learning this Summer

By Shirin Yadegar

By Shirin YadegarSummer break is an important time to allow our children to relax and take time away from stressful assignments and homework, while still cultivating their curiosity and preventing the summer slide. Here are some ideas that have worked in my household over the years that I want to share with you.

Start a Summer Reading Challenge: Create a reading list with age-appropriate books and set a goal for your child to read a certain number of books during the summer. Discuss the books together and encourage them to express their thoughts and opinions. (more…)

Prebiotics, Probiotics, Postbiotics: What is the difference?

By Elissa Goodman

Elissa GoodmanDid you know that there are currently trillions of microorganisms living in your body? That’s about ten times more microorganisms than cells! And while some of these “bad” microorganisms do hold the potential to make you sick, most are considered “good” and live in the body harmoniously to provide incredible benefits for a healthy human host.

In recent years, research surrounding these fascinating microorganisms has flourished. Many studies focus primarily on the gut microbiota, which is a dynamic combination of vital microbes in the intestine. But why are researchers so concerned with the bacteria in your gut? Well, the diversity of your gut microbiota influences the development of certain health conditions, such as immune function, inflammation, metabolism, gastrointestinal diseases, and colorectal cancer. (more…)

Happy Mother’s Day

By Shirin Yadegar

Shirin YadegarMotherhood is a never-ending cycle of wiping noses, cleaning up messes, and trying to remember where you left your sanity. As a mother, you’re constantly tired, constantly busy, and constantly surrounded by a never-ending stream of chaos. It’s like being stuck in a game of “Whack-a-Mole,” where every time you think you’ve got one problem solved, another one pops up. (more…)

Self Empowerment is Saying Yes to Yourself

By Desi Bartlett

Desi Bartlett“Mom takes care of everyone, but who takes care of Mom?” This can feel like an overwhelming or daunting question. Sometimes it feels like you have to take care of everyone first before you can think of self-care, and all too often, mom becomes last on the list. Putting yourself first can sound selfish, but taking a few minutes each morning for your mental and emotional health can set you up for success. Beginning each day from a place of mental clarity and acting, as opposed to reacting, can set the tone for purposeful choices throughout the day. (more…)

The Power of the Determined Client

By Carolyn Mahboubi

Carolyn MahboubiTransformational Coaching takes skill, creativity and commitment. But more than anything else, it takes time.

Can one conversation be full of insights and deeply valuable? Can it be unforgettable and impactful?

But, when done right, this is life-changing work. And anything worthy takes time. That’s just a fact of life.

Philip is a smart, thoughtful and handsome young man. When we began working together, Philip was receiving his Master’s degree from one of the top universities in the world. But he wasn’t happy. (more…)

Summer Plans: Use your time wisely to support your college application plans

By Sonali Bridges

Every year, students look forward to summer break – a chance to unwind, have fun, enjoy time with family, and maybe make new friends at summer camp. In high school; however, the plan for summer starts to feel like it might carry a bit more weight than just having a good time. But how do colleges really view those few months between school years and how can students endeavor to use that time fruitfully?

In talking to students and parents each year, we often hear the same myths continually passed around. Things like students must have a certain number of service hours, or have to try a sport, or even that students should do a summer program at the college they wish to get into. Avoid the rumor mill; instead, students should view the summer as an opportunity to try on something they may not have the time or ability to do during the school year. What colleges really want to see from a student’s summer is that they’ve been productive, but that productivity is not narrowly defined. The activity or activities should be meaningful to the student and align well with their interests or needs. If it seems too early in this brand new year to be thinking about the summer, you’ve been fairly warned – many summer programs that require applications begin taking them (and may even have deadlines) in January! Below, we’ve shared our top recommendations for using summer like a pro (and why) – many students may do more than one in a single summer: (more…)

Holiday Cooking Made Easy

By Shirin Yadegar

Family gathering around the kitchen island to prepare holiday favorites create core childhood memories. Teamwork, laughter and eating together is an essential part of family dinners.

The problem is mom always seems to get stuck with the not so fun part of shopping and cleaning up.

Thanks to mom doesn’t need to go through the shopping and prepping. One potato has made family meals easy. Honestly, I am picky and these boxes that were delivered to my doorstep with the freshest non-gmo seasonal ingredients sourced from the country’s top farms took all the stress out of preparing dinner. (more…)

Israel’s Magen David Adom: Saving Lives and Nourishing Babies

By Dorin Esfahani

Dorin EsfahaniMagen David Adom (literally Red Shield of David) is Israel’s national emergency medical service. It is also the country’s sole blood-services provider for Israel’s hospitals and defense forces. And, as a Red Cross affiliate, Magen David Adom responds to disasters around the world, including most recently in Ukraine.

But few people may know that Magen David Adom (MDA) operates and is home to Israel’s national and only human milk bank. Many premature infants can’t tolerate any other food source because of their underdeveloped digestive and immune systems. But for many reasons, mothers of preemies are not always able to provide their own milk. (more…)

Practicing Gratitude

Shirin Yadegar shares her father’s morning gratitude practice that you might want to adopt.

Thanksgiving is the time of year we gather with family and friends to be grateful for one another and the abundance of food and freedom. My dad used to always baste the turkey. He would marinate the turkey with the same attention and love he led his life with.

My father sadly won’t be basting a turkey or sharing in our thanksgiving meal this year. I’m sure he has other plans as an angel in heaven; but the lessons of gratitude he taught my brother and I will always be present not just on thanksgiving but every morning. (more…)