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Parenting

Creating guardianship when childhood protections end for daughter

Creating guardianship when childhood protections end for daughter

It was about as subtle as the first clap of thunder in a Texas storm. I had taken Meredith to get some routine ultrasounds, and I had explained that it would not hurt and that she might see some funny pictures on a monitor. She understood, though — she was still asking questions in the waiting room. Once we were called back, I picked up Meredith’s backpack and put my arm around her and...
Pediatricians should ask parents about guns at home, study recommends

Pediatricians should ask parents about guns at home, study recommends

Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics released a study that will be in the July issue of “Pediatrics” and its recommendations in response to the study. The “Childhood Firearm Injuries in the United States” is the largest study to look at the number of gun-related injuries and deaths in children and adolescents. It looked at numbers from National Vital Statistics System...
Austin-based Waldo Photos uses facial recognition to sort camp photos

Austin-based Waldo Photos uses facial recognition to sort camp photos

Each July, when I send my kids to a three-week camp near Waco, I become a bit crazy. I log into the camp’s photo site daily and begin searching like mad for proof of life. On days when there might be a happy, smiling photo of one of them, I’m over the moon. On days when I can’t find them anywhere, I’m in the depths of depression and worry. Are they having a good time? Are they...
Put science, art and movies on your family to-do list, June 18-24

Put science, art and movies on your family to-do list, June 18-24

Events Rhythm on Stage. Take center stage and learn how to dance with Ballet Austin instructors. The popular summer series is kicking off with a lesson about Bollywood dance. RSVP ahead of time. 7 p.m. doors Thursday. The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive. thelongcenter.org/event/rhythm-on-stage. Woodland Faerie Trail. See fairy houses on this trail. Through July 30. Free with admission...
Thank you, invisible Dad

Thank you, invisible Dad

Dear Dad: Too bad you were invisible. But if it weren’t for you, our entire family would be invisible too. You were almost always out of the picture. Still, you captured precious glimpses of our lives. With gratitude for your invisible presence, Your loving son If I could send that letter today, I would. Sadly, that opportunity has passed, so to invisible dads everywhere: This thank you is for...
12 lessons dads give children that serve them for a lifetime

12 lessons dads give children that serve them for a lifetime

“Being a Dad Is Weird.” That’s the title of Ben Falcone’s new book. You know Falcone as Melissa McCarthy’s husband and the air marshal in “Bridesmaids.” In the book ($25.99, Dey Street), Falcone looks back at his own childhood and reflects on how it’s made him the father he is today. It’s hilarious and heartwarming. It got me thinking about our...
Note to self: What I wish I’d known about parenting 10 years ago

Note to self: What I wish I’d known about parenting 10 years ago

We have self-driving cars, voice-activated robots who can order you clothes and apps that can help you find fish in a lake (amazing!). Isn’t it only a matter of time, so to speak, until someone figures out time travel correspondence? In August, it’ll be 10 years since my older daughter, Lilly, was born. It’s made me all kinds of nostalgic, and while I’m not sure I’d do...
Austin parents create daughter’s legacy in nonprofit Casey’s Circle

Austin parents create daughter’s legacy in nonprofit Casey’s Circle

It’s a quiet Monday afternoon in May at the Thinkery, a time when it’s normally closed. “A happy very unbirthday to you,” says Marty Barnes as she greets families coming to the children’s museum. About 50 families of children with special needs had the whole museum to explore, away from the typical crowds that can make the museum an overwhelming and unwieldy place for...
Sharing a room with your baby might lead to less sleep, study finds

Sharing a room with your baby might lead to less sleep, study finds

Have a baby and you’re not sleeping? It could be because you’re sharing a room with your baby. Last October, the American Academy of Pediatrics issued new recommendations that at least until six months, preferably until age 1, your child should share a room with you, but not the same bed. Now, a study, which will be published in the July issue of Pediatrics found that babies who shared...
Blanton Museum summer programs return and more family fun, June 11-17

Blanton Museum summer programs return and more family fun, June 11-17

Events Woodland Faerie Trail. See fairy houses on this trail. Through July 30. Free with admission. Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Road. zilkergarden.org. Museums Bullock Museum. World Refugee Day. Celebrate different cultures. 11:30 a.m. Saturday. Bullock Museum, 1800 N. Congress Ave. thestoryoftexas.com Blanton Museum. 3ft Deep. For ages 3-5. Explore art and...
New Let’s Play study: Kids want more play but think video games count

New Let’s Play study: Kids want more play but think video games count

Do your kids play anymore? The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention wants them to, at least 60 minutes of activity a day every day, but are they doing that? Dr Pepper Snapple Group released the results of its Let’s Play State of Play survey for 2017. The survey polled a nationally-representative sample of tweens (age 9-12 children) and parents of children between the ages of 5-17 living...
What is ‘dry drowning’ and how do you prevent it?

What is ‘dry drowning’ and how do you prevent it?

The story of the 4-year-old boy who died in Houston from “dry drowning” has parents everywhere wondering: What is “dry drowning” and do I need to worry about it? “Dry drowning” is an outdated term, said Dr. Eric Higginbotham, medical director of the emergency department at Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas. Doctors now think about it as just...
Lessons learned as daughter becomes a woman during her bat mitzvah

Lessons learned as daughter becomes a woman during her bat mitzvah

Last weekend, while parents all over Austin were having moments of overwhelming pride as kids walked across graduation stages, held their diplomas and turned their tassels from one side of their cap to the other, we were having our own coming-of-age ceremony: a bat mitzvah. It’s a ceremony where my 13-year-old daughter, Ava, stood up in front of friends, family and members of her synagogue and...
Read Kayla Olson’s book ‘Sandcastle Empire’ before it becomes a movie

Read Kayla Olson’s book ‘Sandcastle Empire’ before it becomes a movie

Eden won’t be taken. She must cross a mine-laden beach to make the escape she’s been dreaming of for two years — two years’ worth of sitting silently on the beach gazing out at the horizon, in plain view of the guards known as Wolves. It’s been her only respite from the work camp she was sent to when society collapsed. The guards don’t even pay attention to her...
Is there such a thing as ‘dry drowning’? How can you prevent it?

Is there such a thing as ‘dry drowning’? How can you prevent it?

Morgan Shirley, 7, leaps into Mabel Davis Pool. Shelby Tauber / AMERICAN-STATESMAN The story of the 4-year-old boy who died in Houston from “dry drowning” has parents everywhere wondering what is “dry drowning” and do I  need to be worried about it?
Lessons learned as daughter became a woman during her bat mitzvah

Lessons learned as daughter became a woman during her bat mitzvah

Ava Villalpando celebrates her bat mitzvah on June 3, 2017. Nicole Villalpando/American-Statesman Last weekend, while parents all over Austin were having their own moments of overwhelming pride as kids walked across graduation stages, held their diplomas and turned their tassels from one side of their cap to the other, we were having our own coming-of-age ceremony: a bat mitzvah.
Enjoy this first week of no school with these family events, June 4-10

Enjoy this first week of no school with these family events, June 4-10

Events Woodland Faerie Trail. See fairy houses on this trail. Through July 30. Free with admission. Plus Moonlight Faerie Trail. 8-10 p.m. Friday-Saturday. $6. Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Road. zilkergarden.org. Domain Northside Kids. Come to the lawn at the Domain Northside for activities for kids 18 months to 6 years old. Free. 10 a.m.-noon Wednesday. Reservations required, domainnorthside...
Why do girls’ clothes seem smaller than boys’ clothes? Because they are

Why do girls’ clothes seem smaller than boys’ clothes? Because they are

Imagine you have twin 6-year-olds, one boy and one girl. You hit the boys’ and girls’ departments of your favorite clothing store in search of summer clothes for them. (After all, last year’s clothes don’t even come close to fitting.) You pick out a girls’ size 6 short-sleeved shirt and shorts for her and a boys’ size 6 short-sleeved shirt and shorts for him. His...
Back to School to-do list: Clean out the backpack

Back to School to-do list: Clean out the backpack

Remember when the backpacks were brand new? They don’t look like this anymore.RALPH BARRERA/ AMERICAN-STATESMAN Yes, we know this is the last day of school for kids in Austin Independent School District, and for kids in neighboring districts, it seems like school just ended, right?
Retiring high school counselors share 70 years of lessons

Retiring high school counselors share 70 years of lessons

As seniors walk across the stage at McCallum High School’s graduation Thursday, school counselors Lucia Facundo and Mindy Croom will say goodbye to them like they do every year. “I just love graduation,” Croom says. “I think it’s just a really fun day.” “They’re nervous,” Facundo says of the students. “Their families are so happy.”...
Summer fun for the family begins this week, May 28-June 3

Summer fun for the family begins this week, May 28-June 3

Events Woodland Faerie Trail. See fairy houses on this trail. Through July 30. Free with admission. Zilker Botanical Garden, 2220 Barton Springs Road. zilkergarden.org. Bubblepalooza. It’s all about making bubbles. 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday. The Long Center, 701 W. Riverside Drive. thelongcenter.org RED Arena Round-Up. Family fun and an inclusive rodeo play day with a petting zoo, bounce houses...
What should your kids be reading this summer? Check out our list

What should your kids be reading this summer? Check out our list

Summer is nearly upon us — and so is the lovely season of agenda-less reading. No reading logs, no genre requirements, no literature prompts. Those all have their place, but developing a love of reading in this digital age also needs a shot of sheer pleasure. To that end, here are summer reading picks for all ages, from a modern pioneer’s biography to an undercover warrior’s fantastical...
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