independence 

Letting Kids Roam Alone - Would You?

Kids are wandering around their neighborhood on their own. Everybody panic! Lenore Skenazy, author of the book Free-Range Kids: Giving Our Children the Freedom We Had Without Going Nuts With Worry, recently shared the tale of an independent child,...

Kids Don't Appreciate Their Parents Until Age 22

Teens think they know everything -- it's a common complaint. But if you're looking for a little appreciation for all of your hard work and parental wisdom, you're in for a long wait. A British market research survey recently found that children don't...

Riding the subway - to school?

How do your kids get to school? How did you get to school when you were a kid? Taking the yellow school bus, walking or riding a bike may all seem like normal methods of getting to school. In the modern world, we drive and carpool as well. But what...

Helicopter parents vs. free range kids

When I was 11, I had a summer job. Five days a week, I rode my 10-speed two miles into town and babysat three kids. The oldest was 10, furious that her babysitter was only a year older than her. The youngest was only one. I can't even imagine leaving...

Leaving the kids at home

I was on my way home from work Monday night when I suddenly lost control of the car. The steering became sluggish and unresponsive and it was all I could do to wrestle the vehicle off the freeway and into a nearby shopping mall parking lot. I'm no...

Keep kids close to make them more independent

When my folks were alive, we were pretty close. For a number of years, my folks and I commuted downtown together (my dad was no longer able to take the train); I dropped them off at their office, then continued on to mine. Even in choosing where to...

Secret Store

Sara's preschool hosted an interesting event for the kids this past weekend. All the kids brought home paper bags the week before to decorate and mark with names of family members. Families were also instructed to bring in half a dozen or so small...

When your 30-year-old son won't move out

Normally I don't read advice columns, because the "advice" is usually so general, and so obvious, that I highly doubt it's at all helpful for the poor, beleaguered person who's struggling with a real-life problem that has no easy answers. However,...

Another one rides the bus

Well, today was the day. We got up bright and early and Ellie started first grade at her new school. She was so excited, not only to be going to a new school, but to be riding the school bus for the first time. My husband and I had gone back and...

Satellite tracking in school uniforms

I'm already dreading my daughter's first day of school. Obviously I'm excited for her, and I know it's an important part of growing up, becoming more independent, blah blah -- but school is a big, scary place and she'll be all alone and what if...

Kids strip-searched at daycamp

When $140 went missing from at a city-run day camp in Chicago, counselors -- instead of calling parents, talking to police, or doing anything else within the bounds of reason -- decided to strip-search the 8 and 9-year-old campers. Parents were only...

Illegal fireworks take out teen's hand

I hate to say I told you so but... I told you so. As did the CPSC, the police, and just about everyone else. Someone, however, didn't listen. They tossed some sort of firecracker -- likely an M-80, which is basically a quarter stick of dynamite --...

Give me independence or nothing at all: life with a teen

Last night after dinner, I asked my oldest son, Loren, if he had finished his homework. His school has the entire week off for the Thanksgiving holiday, but he will spending the bulk of his break in Utah with his father and his grandparents. Since I...

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