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It's not perfect. It's parenting.

Sometimes you need answers to the little everyday things that parents encounter. And sometimes, you just need someone to encourage you through all of the craziness and challenges of parenthood. Welcome to Parent-ish.

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Make the season bright: KC area holiday displays

This season, many families are looking for ways to celebrate the season while social distancing. Outdoor events and driving to look at holiday lights is a tradition that doesn’t have to change. Here are some of the Kansas City area’s best light shows you won’t want to miss.

high school boys basketball game

Returning to play: indoor sports

As our climate seasons change, so do our sport seasons. With the onset of cooler temperatures, indoor sports are starting to gear up. Typically, this transition is not much of an issue, but as we know 2020 has not been the standard by any means.

Tips for celebrating the holidays safely during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has been very challenging and isolating for many people. The holidays are generally a time for people to reconnect with family and friends, but it is important to remember you can spread the virus that causes COVID-19, even when you feel healthy, and others may spread it to you. Many communities, including Kansas City, are currently experiencing high rates of community transmission of COVID-19. Getting the flu vaccine before your holiday celebration is a great way to protect yourself and others against other viruses that we see this time of year. Below are some suggestions for modifying your holiday plans to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 and to help keep everyone safe.

mom working at home and two children doing schoolwork next to her

Parenting in a pandemic: tips for managing stress and balance

Family stress is at an all-time high - school schedules are modified, parents have altered work situations, childcare options are limited, and time outside of the home is decreased. For others, caregivers are out of work, family members may be ill, and the financial burden is mounting. During this coronavirus pandemic, expectations of normal family life are not always sustainable or realistic. So, if you haven’t heard it yet, here’s your pass to break from the norm and just focus on surviving for a bit.

sisters watching tv on laptop

Strategies for smart screen time during COVID

With kids’ virtual learning and activities, remote work from home and video chats with family and friends, many of us find ourselves overwhelmed with screen time gone overboard. Data is showing that kids ages 6 to 12 years old in the United States are spending about 50% more time in front of screens than they were before the COVID-19 pandemic. Traffic to kids’ digital apps and services have increased 70% during the same period of time. And with an increase in screen usage comes an increase in guilty feelings for parents and caregivers. But we’d like to help ease the guilt with some information and practical tips for families.

How to stay safe this Halloween

Halloween is a great time of year for many children. Like many other activities, Halloween will look different this year during the COVID-19 pandemic as we all work to keep our families and community safe. Here are some tips to keep everyone safe this spooky season.

9 truths about eating disorders and tips for parents

ANYONE can develop an eating disorder, any age, race, nationality, socioeconomic status; eating disorders do not discriminate. Eating disorders are serious but treatable mental illnesses. There are several types of eating disorders. These can include: anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder, avoidant restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) and others. The quicker the behaviors are addressed, the more likely there is to be a positive outcome. There are many misconceptions about eating disorders. Below are nine TRUTHS about eating disorders to help anyone who might be facing one. If you think you or someone you love may have an eating disorder please visit childrensmercy.org for more information.

Top 6 things the pros want you to know about antibiotics

When many of today’s parents were kids, they were prescribed antibiotics almost as often as they went to the doctor. A cough, an earache, or an upset stomach might all be treated with the same bubble-gum-flavored medicine. More recently, medical research has shown that antibiotics are most effective when they are prescribed more carefully, and not treated as a cure-all solution. These facts are intended to help families use antibiotics with maximum effectiveness and minimum side effects.

soccer player female wearing a face mask arms crossed

Returning to play

Since the COVID-19 pandemic has become part of our landscape, the virus has proven to serve as another variable for parents to consider when making decisions involving their kids. This is especially true in the youth sports world. Some common questions parents find themselves asking are: Are sports safe? What extra precautions should my athlete take? How do I handle the situation if my athlete has been exposed to COVID-19?

Dad reading to child

Better sleep, better parenting - Restless leg syndrome

Almost every parent will tell you sleepless nights are part of the job description, but sleep disorders are not. Sleep disorders are medical or behavioral conditions that prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep, and these common, chronic conditions can also keep you from being the best parent you can be.

Better sleep, better parenting - Sleep apnea

Sleep is a bodily function that affects every aspect of your life. But one of the most important is how you feel during the day. Improving your sleep will have a positive effect on your overall health. And your sleep affects those around you as well. You’re a better friend, partner and/or parent when you sleep better.  

Helping children learn to wear masks

Wearing a mask in public places is a new routine for almost all of us. For kids who are younger, have developmental differences like autism, or other behavioral or medical needs, we shouldn’t be surprised if they are having trouble adjusting to this new expectation. The truth is that learning to wear any kind of new clothes–like a new pair of shoes, brand-new dress clothes, or gloves and a coat in the winter–is a skill, and not one that is likely to improve just through explaining the “why” behind the new rule.

Healthy ways to talk to children about race

Recent events have brought racism to the forefront, increasing the need to have open and honest discussions with children of all ages. But how and when do we talk to our children about racism? First, we have to understand race and what it means to be anti-racist.

Happy family swimming together in a pool

7 ways to keep pools safe this summer

Summer is here! For me, it felt like summer would never come this year after such a cold winter, and the start of stay-at-home orders. But now, some city pools are opening and lakes and all types of fun water activities are an option!

Woman holding baby

Babysitters tell all

“So when he goes to sleep, do I sit in his room and watch him?” – my daughter, asking questions before her first babysitting job. My daughter had her first babysitting job at age 11. She watched a first-grade boy for an hour then helped him get to bed. Then she sat and watched TV until the parents came home. During this first “trial” babysitting job, the parents were next door at a neighborhood party.