Selecting the Right School for Your Child

By Nathalie Kunin
Nathalie KuninSelecting the right school for your child can be as exhilarating as it is overwhelming. Here are some things to consider as you tour prospective schools, thumb through brochures, and peruse websites.

1. Observe and Report. Start with a school tour, but don’t stop there! Stop by during their next book fair, see a school play or attend a sporting event. Are there on-campus volunteer opportunities? You want to meet as many families as possible to get a broader sense of the school and the community.

(more…)

Making the Right Food Choices During the Holidays

Tips on remaining in control while enjoying the holiday foods.

By Sherly Shooshani Daneshgar, MS, RD
Sherly ShooshaniThe average American adult gains between 1 to 10 pounds during the “holiday season,” the six weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. As loving, caring parents this is one holiday tradition we do not want to pass on to our children’s generation.

The holidays are about spending cherished time with family and close friends. They are about family rituals and traditions. For most, this time of year is also about eating indulgent high fat and high calorie foods that we don’t usually eat the rest of the year. Everywhere we look there are tempting baked goods, candies, chocolates and savory foods.

Below are five simple suggestions to help you and your family enjoy all the wonderful aspects of the holiday season, while remaining in control.

(more…)

Creating a Healthy Home

Give the Gift of Getting Along.

By Jessica Williams
Jessica WilliamsThe holidays can be a time of precious memories and great stress. This season, in addition to the presents that light up the faces of your children, you have the opportunity to create peace in your home that will last a lifetime.

What if the best of today’s progressive parenting experts sat in your living room and gave you the advice, comfort and solutions you have been looking for? I have spent the last months conducting video and audio interviews and collecting written contributions from best-selling authors, psychotherapists, educators, PhD and MDs. I designed a program with eight essential parenting themes, and have created eight video compilations from the interviews, so that expert research, science, experience and expertise lies within your grasp in one cohesive program. There is also a downloadable handbook, highlighting action steps you can take with your children to manage day-to-day conflict with new awareness, and to lay the foundation of a healthy connection and attachment that will inform the rest of your days.

(more…)

The Hidden Dangers of Tap Water

By Dr. Susanne Bennett
SusanneAs parents, we all want to ensure that our children and loved ones eat healthy, unadulterated food, free of hormones, pesticides and chemicals. But are we as vigilant about the liquids and drinks we ingest? Did you know that there is a hidden chemical in most beverages and liquids we consume, including tap water, the iced tea served by most restaurants, your child’s favorite soup from the local deli, even your glass of red wine? A vast majority of beverages and foods that are made with municipal drinking water in the US will contain a chemical additive called fluoride. If ingested in large amounts, fluoride may be harmful to the body, particularly in children. (more…)

Storybooks and New Situations

Your child can be the star of the story.

By Atoosa Nehorai
atoosaFor children, the world is wondrous place filled with new experiences and new challenges. Every parent knows that some life events are more complicated and require more attention and discussion than others. As a mother of three, I came to realize the power of storybooks in helping parents explain new situations to their children. I learned that these books can play an important role in facilitating an honest and open discussion about the issue at hand. Upon seeing the benefits of these storybooks, I decided to launch a website which allowed parents to create customized stories which addressed specific issues that were significant to their child; a place where families could write their own stories. (more…)

Prepping Your Child for Kindergarten

What are private schools looking for?

By Janis Adams
janis adamsThere are a lot of questions about whether or not one should prep their child for the all important playdate/entrance exam to private school Kindergarten.

The subject is so fraught with emotion that many parents do not even discuss it with other parents. This anxiety is fueled by the low number of openings in Los Angeles private schools and by a sense of competition that careens off the walls of inflatable party bouncers the minute the child turns three.

Such is the reality of today’s private school admissions. (more…)

Easy Thanksgiving Recipes

By Catherine McCord
Thanksgiving is my favorite meal hands down. When I’m planning dinner for our family, I attempt to make everyone’s favorite dish for them. For me, that’s roasted Brussels Sprouts , for my father-in-law it’s Maple Turkey, and for the kids it’s Orange Glazed Carrots. I like to keep the recipes simple and easy to ensure I spend as little time in the kitchen and as much time enjoying my family as possible.

mapleturkeyMaple Brined Turkey (Makes 10-12 Servings)

Water1 Cup
Maple Syrup1 Cup
Salt (preferably kosher)1
12-14 Pound Turkey (defrosted if frozen)
1 Orange
1 Onion
(more…)

Mama’s Singing the Blues

By Dr. Maria DiMeglio
MariaDiMegliIn your arms is the most precious, beautiful bundle of joy you could ever have imagined. You know your heart should be filled with loving warmth, jubilee, and sheer wonder at the little miracle in front of you; BUT, instead, you’re a wreck! You haven’t slept in weeks and you’ve lost your brain and a few other things you can’t remember at the moment. The deep, dark bags under your eyes are reminiscent of the Bride of Frankenstein. You’re completely overwhelmed and leaking from every orifice in your body, especially your eyes…uncontrollable tears are streaming down your face.

Postpartum depression is a very real and all too often overlooked condition that can affect up to 25 percent of new moms. It can range in severity from a mild case of the “baby blues” to the rare, and often tragic, psychotic break, and can impact the whole family. Chronic sleep deprivation coupled with huge hormonal shifts take their toll on even the strongest individuals, let alone someone who may already be prone to depression.

(more…)