15 art project ideas to encourage self-awareness in kids

15 Art Projects to Build Your Child’s Self-Awareness

The family togetherness that comes with the holiday season is fantastic. That is, when the kids aren’t fighting, bored, or cracked out on candy that was meant to decorate the gingerbread house. To avoid the chaos and stress that can accompany two full weeks of unstructured, school-free play time, we offer our project ideas. We’re always looking for easy and fun activities to entertain the young...

Read more
30 Winter Rituals to Create Family Connection

30 Winter Rituals to Create Family Connection

Last year we started a new family ritual. It’s called the snow couch. Because who doesn’t love sitting on hard, compacted snow. We eat and drink and talk on this snow couch. The kids love it because it’s pretty exciting to see this “piece of furniture” take shape. I cherish the snow couch for the conversation and connection. How to Create Family Rituals Any mundane activity can be elevated to a...

Read more
4 things to teach your kid about connection. Why connection matters. How connecting helps us feel a sense of belonging.

4 Things All Kids Should Know About Connection

Research shows that children learn better when they teach someone else what they’ve learned, rather than when they learn for the purpose of a test. “Learning to teach someone else is prosocial and relies on the social networks of the brain,” explains Matthew Lieberman, distinguished social psychologist and neuroscientist.[1] Considering that social connection is a core psychological need, as im...

Read more
9 Secrets to Get Your Kid To Open Up

9 Secrets to Get Your Kid to Open Up

It’s not rocket science. The people we open up to are the people we like. We share most freely with our spouse or our dearest friends or a trusted relative. Maybe we share with the Uber driver, but that’s probably because that Uber driver is a good listener. Or maybe he makes you laugh with a story about a previous passenger that wanted a ride to the grocery store at 2am to bowl watermelons dow...

Read more
Building Emotional Intelligence in Children

7 Tools for Building Emotional Intelligence in Children

School is back in session. Whether your “new normal” looks vastly different or just kinda different than your old normal, you’re probably feeling the crunch of kid schedules, activities and obligations. It’s easy to forget when you’re shuttling your child to practice and lessons, or just reminding them to do homework, that academics and well-roundedness take you only so far in life. In fact, re...

Read more
Ways to Deescalate When Kids Are Arguing

An Easy Way to Deescalate When Your Kids Are Arguing

The battle began in the yard with small chunks of hardened mud—"mud rocks” as coined by my boys. They were running around pelting each other. What’s fun without a little danger? Sure, it was just small bits of mud they threw, but the bits were growing by the second, radioactively, soon-to-be baseball-sized. You know the game? In our house, we call it “Until Someone Gets Hurt.” “I know they’re j...

Read more
Parenting Lessons in Unexpected Places

Parenting Lessons in Unexpected Places

We all want our kids to grow up to become happy adults. But what is happiness? A fulfilling relationship with a partner? A rewarding, high-paying job? Close friends? Good health? A helluva sale on your favorite Trader Joes Pinot?  “Happiness is an achievement,” read the teabag tag on my recent cup of Blackberry Apple Cider Digestive Awakening Tea by Yogi brand. The idea that happiness doesn’t j...

Read more
Fostering Self-Awareness in Your Child

Fostering Self-Awareness in Your Child Is Not As Hard As You May Think

Feeling a mild sense of panic at the word 'resilience'? You worry you aren’t doing enough to build your kid’s resilience. You worry you aren’t doing it right. You worry because the stakes are so high. You worry because you don’t even know the difference between “resilience” and “resiliency.” (Is there a difference?) And your kid quit T-ball after just one practice. And your kid cried after losi...

Read more
Teaching Kids Emotional Regulation Without Stigmatizing Mental Health

Teaching Kids Emotional Regulation Without Stigmatizing Mental Health

We’ve all lived it. IPad time ends and your son goes ballistic. Did he think it was going to last forever? A “friendly” game of air hockey between siblings and the loser completely loses it. Did sis really believe her handle-turning prowess unmatchable? A fly lands on his hamburger, and well, ya know... "big emotions.” Research abounds about the importance of emotional regulation for success in...

Read more
Building Resilience in My Children After Losing My Brother to Suicide

Building Resilience in My Children After Losing My Brother to Suicide

My brother Grant was to arrive in Denver on Wednesday, August 27th to visit me. But two days earlier, he died by suicide. Grant was 28 and incredibly successful in his career as a chef. He was adored by his family. He had close friends. He had other friends, who weren’t as close. He had friends coming out of his ears. Never before had he threatened suicide, nor had he ever made an attempt. In...

Read more
Fostering gratitude after your child's successes

A Surprising Lesson Success Can Teach Your Child

You’re beaming. Your daughter crushed it at her gymnastics meet. Or maybe your son aced that U.S. states quiz. Our instinct as parents is to shower our children with praise in their moments of success. We want to boost them up because, geez, there’s plenty that can bring them down in the day. And we want them to feel pride in their hard work. We want them to continue working hard. Plus, your ch...

Read more