All The More Epic: On Adventure and Kids

Author and husband on top of rock ledge
We hiked to the top of this rock arch in the Jordanian desert on one of our first dates!

Tonight, on the eve of our first adventure of the summer, I sit here reflecting on what it means to have “adventures”.  And how that has changed since having kids.  Many, dare I say most, assume that adventures have to stop when kids enter the picture, at least for a while.  I used to think that, and initially I mourned the loss of a part of myself.  But now, with my oldest just turned three and a baby entering her first summer, I believe kids actually provide more opportunities for adventure.  Intrigued? Read on!  Continue reading “All The More Epic: On Adventure and Kids”

“Best Of”: Awesome Hacks for Stress-Free Travel With Kids

Bear in suitcaseSummer is almost here, and that means if you’re planning a summer trip, it’s time to get organized.  I personally love the excitement and anticipation of researching and planning a trip!  But if you travel with kids, especially young kids, there are also many stressors involved.  From car seats to hotel arrangements, to keeping everyone semi-occupied and happy on the plane and in the car, the details can sometimes get overwhelming.  Googling “travel with kids” can bring you some great ideas, but going through all the lists and figuring out what will help and what’s more work than it’s worth is, well, more work.  We can help!  Below is our “best of” list, bringing you gear, ideas, and one awesome travel hack that will, hopefully, make this summer’s trip less stressful! Continue reading ““Best Of”: Awesome Hacks for Stress-Free Travel With Kids”

Fluency Not Required: Foreign Language Exposure is Great for Kids!

Kids blocks with Arabic letters.
The benefits of being bilingual at an early age has been well studied. But what about more limited exposure?

We have all heard the advantages of being bilingual, especially at a young age.  A number of studies have shown that children who learn two languages from early childhood have an easier time learning other languages later, and are able to speak multiple languages without an accent.  Some studies even suggest knowing more than one language can help offset dementia.  That said, usually bilingual children either have at least one parent who is fluent in second language, or they speak a language at home that is different from the one used outside the home.  For most of us, that’s not in the cards.  But what about limited foreign language exposure?  Does that do anything?  In this post I’ll review the studies relating to this topic and provide a few suggestions for how to easily integrate a second language into your kids’ lives (and your own!). Continue reading “Fluency Not Required: Foreign Language Exposure is Great for Kids!”

“Is That Safe?” — Why Crossfit During Pregnancy Was Right for Me

Author doing overhead squat while pregnant
Doing Crossfit at approximately 25 weeks pregnant.

“Is that safe?”  Every time I mentioned Crossfit during pregnancy or posted a picture, a well-meaning friend would inquire as to whether such activity was acceptable.  It’s an understandable question.  For me, I believe it was.

While exercise during pregnancy was discouraged long ago, today doctors generally agree that it is beneficial to both mother and baby, and should be encouraged in uncomplicated pregnancies.  The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) states that “regular physical activity during pregnancy improves or maintains physical fitness, helps with weight management, reduces the risk of gestational diabetes in obese women, and enhances psychologic well-being.”

Okay.  But what about intense exercise like Crossfit? Continue reading ““Is That Safe?” — Why Crossfit During Pregnancy Was Right for Me”

Weighted Blankets For Kids, Better Sleep for All?

Girl sleeping with teddy bear
If you’re a parent, you’re probably not getting as much sleep as you should be!

If you’re reading this, that probably means you aren’t getting enough sleep.  In fact, according to this study, for women under 45, “researchers found the only factor associated with getting enough sleep was having children in the house, with each child increasing the odds of insufficient sleep by nearly 50 percent.” And while the study focuses on women, I’d venture to bet that in a lot of households today, including ours, sleep is short for both parents!  In this post, I’ll share our experience with weighted blankets so you can decide if they might be helpful for your family’s sleep.

Continue reading “Weighted Blankets For Kids, Better Sleep for All?”