3 Must Reads This Weekend

3 Must Reads this Weekend

Weekend Fun at Fullers Beach Martha's Vineyard

Secondary Drowning and How You Can Save Your Child

There is nothing like a summer weekend for family fun times. Water safety is something we should all be aware of especially during this time of the year.

Water is fun but it can also be dangerous. If your child falls in or has a water incident and displays any of these signs it could be secondary drowning which can happen in even 1/2 inch of water.

  • child is not acting like himself
  • he is lethargic
  • he is coughing even after the event is over
  • his lips changed color
  • he has a change in his breathing

These can be a sign that he has water in his lungs and needs immediate medical help. Call 911 immediately.

Click the following link for a video on CPR for children.


Source: What Is Secondary Drowning And How Can You Prevent It :: YummyMummyClub.ca

Flying with Baby

Traveling with baby on a weekend getaway can be trying at best. Here are a few tips that just might help you as you get ready to board a plane with your little one.

  • Crying At High Altitudes-This is stressful for you more than other passengers even when they give you dirty looks. Sucking on a pacifier, nursing or feeding your baby a bottle might ease the pressure on his ears.
  • Ear pain– Again this is experienced by some babies and not others. If your baby has a cold and you are going to travel you might want to have your pediatrician take a quick peek at his ears to make sure he does not have an infection.
  • Noise level- The decibel level in the plane may be upsetting to your baby, using small  pieces of cotton to cover your baby’s ears may help him fall asleep through the noise.
  • Flying with Baby – HealthyChildren.org

9 Signs of Mean Girl Behavior Warnings

No one wants their daughter to be a “mean” girl. Here are some 9 signs that might be the beginning of trouble.

  • She is bossy
  • She is always making threats
  • She forms clubs to exclude other kids
  • Click the link to read the rest: Is Your Daughter a Mean Girl

Happy Weekend from ParentingintheLoop!

TGIF – Weekend Reading

Weekend Reading:

Weekend Sunrise

Weekend Sunrise

Over 50 or not these are some good tips to follow in a confusing world of health advice. Aging is taking place no matter what year you were born, a simple fact. So when I came across this simple list I thought I would share it. I recommend this list especially meditation which you can teach to your children and grandchildren. Remember they are sponges when it comes to learning.


It’s easy to feel confused by all the healthy aging advice out there. Wine is good for you. Wine is bad for you. Take calcium supplements. Don’t take calcium supplements. At times, it seems like the “experts” really don’t know what they’re talking about. I can’t solve any of these debates. But, I can give you a few simple things that you can do to stay healthy after 50.

Even when I was very young, I can remember not being able to shut down and easily relax except at the beach. The waves and sounds at the ocean always sedated me…the sun also helped.

How do you relax?

Where is your happy, restful place?


I am not one who can easily relax. Usually, I need a brick wall in front of me to make me stop (or a cliff will do fine, too). Adrenaline runs through my veins. I am continually creating and updating my to-do lists (or as I call them, my must-do lists) and the I-don’t-have-time-to-relax attitude often overtakes me.

  • News Moms Need-March of Dimes
  • burnout, caring for the caretaker, coping, delays, disabilities, mindfulness, Pregnancy, relaxation, rest, Special needs, stress, Stress awareness month, yoga

Routines have always been my fall back when things start to get overwhelming. When I was single living in NYC my puppy kept me on a routine of walking at certain times every day. We have always had dogs but the walking routine went by the wayside when we fenced in our yard. It was evident to me early in my parenting years that routine was a blessing for children and for us as parents. It helped to wind down our day with dinner, a story or quiet play before going to bed. On the nights that this did not happen, often chaos ensued.

What are your routines?


I’ve laughed at many a parent who said no to something fun because of nap time or a preference for an evening at home. But while I won’t turn down the fantastic, I have started to turn down the kind of fun that I know will turn a pleasant, routine afternoon into the family equivalent of a manic episode. It’s for their sakes and for mine; some days I know I won’t have the energy to wind down out of the sky a child flying high as a kite post-play date without it ending in tears.

The weekend has always signified a time to relax and renew for the coming week. Over the years it has morphed and become more and more busy. Even now as a grandparent, I find the Saturday and Sunday sometimes more hectic than weekdays of work or school activities.

We are poised for a bit of a deluge here in Chicago today…it could make for a hectic or quiet weekend. Let’s see…

TGIF-Weekend Reading

Weekend Reading:

Weekend Light



Spring Break has come to Chicago. As we approach this holiday weekend of Easter and Passover, family time takes over. Many of us will be enjoying food, and visits with relatives and friends as we celebrate and relax and spend some “quality time” with each other.


Parenting and boundaries…do you embarrass your kids or do you shame them on Facebook or even in your blog? As parents, we probably should learn some boundaries when it comes to “talking” to or about each other on social media.


We as parents do terrible things to our teens all the time. Our fashion humiliates them, we hold their hands in public or try to kiss them goodbye in front of friends. These are hurtful actions to our teens who are sometimes awkwardly maneuvering into adulthood while trying on different hats. Sometimes it’s slow and plodding, sometimes it’s at breakneck speed but always it is a path they are attempting to make for themselves and though we’re invited along for parts of the ride it’s appropriate for us parents to stand back a little and let them explore their worlds.

I love cooking but on any given day it can be a challenge putting dinner on the table. As a young parent, I definitely had more energy to accomplish this task, but as a grandparent it has become difficult with maintaining weight management and making healthy choices for three generations in the meal planning. I really related to this new mom, who wanted to have  home made dinners but cooking was no longer a relaxing time for her in the kitchen.


This became a habitual meditation — imagining my pre-baby dinner routine every time I sat down to feed my baby. Cooking had been my relaxation habit for years, the chop-chop-chopping of onions and the swirl of oil in a pan my fragrant, rhythmic ritual for slowing down after a hectic day. I loved it, and the memory of it calmed me when I needed to be patient with my fussy eater.

“Quantitiy vs. Quality Time” is always a parenting discussion. Do you use weekend time as quality, quantity time?


As an exhausted parent who doesn’t get enough time to work out, who hasn’t seen a grown-up movie for months, and who wishes that date night were an actual night rather than an idea, I understand why so many of us might seize on studies suggesting that we should take more time for ourselves. Perhaps we should. But we should do so without relying on misleading research. Far better that we make our parenting choices informed by the broader set of more reliable studies, which Ms. Kalil summarized for me as suggesting “that when parents spend high-quality time with their children, their children are more likely to succeed.”

Of course, you can’t have those transcendent moments unless you’re together — to some small extent, quantity begets quality. And that’s where this research should come back to reassure parents. We are spending time with our children, particularly when you look, not at one bad day, but at a week, a month, a year, an entire childhood spent together. When we are questioning ourselves, we tend to look not at the cumulative sum of our time, but at what we fear we’ve missed. We don’t need to spend every minute with our children, or every minute engaged in intense togetherness. The time we spend apart (sleeping, working, studying, building blocks, playing sports, staring into space) brings something to our interactions, too. It’s time to look at our family calendars as half full, not half empty.

Hoping that you all have a restful, enjoyable weekend!

TGIF Weekend Reading

Weekend Reading:

Weekend in Spring

Despite the weather here in Chicago this weekend, I keep thinking Spring…soon…wait for it!

Meditation is not difficult to learn and practice. For me it has been a journey over many years through my own pregnancies and it continues as a grandmother. You can do it for a moment or you can do it for an hour. I hope you find time to try it for yourself…maybe even this weekend.



From stress reduction to improved attention and memory, meditation is a practice that yields a large number of health benefits. Mediation has slowly been gaining in popularity in recent years, garnering a number of scientific studies to determine the specific effects the practice has on the body. It has been found that meditation and other forms of relaxation and mindfulness not only change the immediate state of mind, but also alter the actual structure of the brain.


What is the “Grandparent Deficit”? When you have children later in life the chance of them having “vibrant” active grandparents changes and many times diminishes. I feel somewhat on the cusp of this as a grandparent myself. I want to do so many things with my grandchildren but I find sometimes my energy level just cannot always meet my expectations.


She and my two daughters are among a growing number of kids who will see their grandparents primarily as people in need of care rather than as caretakers. They are the leading edge of a generation whose mothers and fathers had children later in life. They’ve seen us juggle our jobs, their school schedules and their grandparents’ needs simultaneously–one day missing work to be at the bedside of a parent who’s had a bad fall, another day trying to call an elder-care aide from the back row of a dance recital.

This link appeared in my feed this week and it took me by surprise that a Lego Magazine would incorporate something like Emma’s Beauty Tips into its pages. What do beauty tips have to do with Legos? Well, see for yourself how this mom felt when her 7year old daughter became concerned about the shape of her face! YIKES!


My 7-year-old wants to know if she has an oval face. Why? Because “oval faces can often have almost any style haircut because almost everything looks great on this face shape!” Her sudden concern with her hairstyle “looking great” comes courtesy of her new Lego Club Magazine, which included “Emma’s Beauty Tips” in the March-April 2015 Lego Club Magazine.


The weekend remains precious to me. Sometimes, I am able to recharge by having dinner with friends along with great conversation…other times I am able to grab a few extra hours of sleep or reading. Whatever it is you do on the weekend, I hope you make a little time for yourself.

TGIF-Weekend Reading

Weekend Reading:

weekend chicago



OMG…this weekend we may see the temperatures rise above freezing here in Chiberia (Chicagoland) and just perhaps some of this snow will melt and the ice on our stoop will disappear…FINALLY!

So many interesting articles appeared in my feed this week. I am excited to share some of them with you.

Morals, values, opinions and the Core Curriculum currently a hot topic is discussed here. This article really got me thinking. See what you think!

 So as a parent, I will teach the morals, the values and my opinions. The schools will teach my children to question me. In that way, we all end up on the right side of history.

Moral facts or mere opinions that vary from culture to culture, what do you think?

The Convent of the Sacred Heart Greenwich Middle School Parent Blog is on my favorite list. There are always some great posts that generate a lot of thought on my part about what my grandchildren will face in the future.

As a philosopher, I already knew that many college-aged students don’t believe in moral facts. While there are no national surveys quantifying this phenomenon, philosophy professors with whom I have spoken suggest that the overwhelming majority of college freshman in their classrooms view moral claims as mere opinions that are not true or are true only relative to a culture.


For me, sleep comes fairly easily and now that I am a grandmother, when I awake during the night, getting back to sleep is not usually a problem. But for many moms and women in general, this is not the case. Are you too stressed or worried to sleep well? Or do you know someone that is…then this NYTimes article may shed some light on why sleep is so evasive.

Why all the angst over bedtime, the one part of the day that, barring nightmares, ought to bring deeply needed peace? Many believe that sleep deprivation among women has worsened. In the “Women and Sleep” study, 80 percent of women reported being just too stressed or worried to turn out the proverbial lights.

Another weekend, my husband and I try to have dinner out on Fridays, most of the time with friends but sometimes just the two of us. We unwind at a local restaurant, where the waitstaff knows us and where we can enjoy eating and relaxing. I have to plug the Lettuce Entertain You restaurant group because they have been a dependable favorite of ours for so many years here in Chicago. They do not disappoint!


Lettuce Entertain You



Enjoy a meal with your significant others this weekend!

TGIF- Weekend Reading

Weekend Reading:

Another cold week here in Chicago with a fresh covering of snow. The weekend is warm and welcoming inside our home. We use our time to relax a little, along with catching up on some reading and napping with each other and our furry friends.


Saralyn Richard, the author of Naughty Nana, is my cherished friend, who has written a charming children’s book about her dog Nana. It is a favorite of mine and I hope it becomes a favorite of yours. Enjoy an interview with Saralyn from Dogster.


I think dogs are wonderful teachers of patience, compassion, loyalty, trust, responsibility, and love.

Unfortunately, a lot of children do not have consistency and stability in their lives. A dog is always steady, consistent, reliable, and predictable. A dog will always greet you the same way, and treat you the same way whether you are bad or good. Whether you got a good report card, are smelly or clean, whether your room is a mess, a dog is going to love you unconditionally and the same way all the time.



For me children and rainbows go together, like rain and running in puddles on a rainy day. Here is an activity from Kristina at Toddler Approved, which helps me share my love of rainbows with my grandchild . I think you will find Kristina’s blog something you cannot stay away from…it will bring out the child in you this weekend.

Easy Preschool Cutting Craft: Paper Rainbows

One of my favorite parts about St. Patrick’s Day is that it is associated with rainbows. My kids love singing songs about the colors of the rainbow all year long and there is just something that makes me happy whenever I see a rainbow!

This week my preschooler wanted something to do while her big brother (my 1st grader) did his homework. We got talking about St. Patrick’s Day and she assigned herself to make a rainbow.

This easy paper rainbow craft project is a super simple way to practice scissor skills and cutting straight and curvy lines!


Kristina is the founder of Toddler Approved. She is a mom of three (ages 6,3,1), as well as a National Board certified teacher. Kristina taught for several years and then worked part-time as a curriculum specialist, new teacher coach, and crisis intervention trainer once she became a mom. She retired in Fall 2011 and now loves being full-time mom and teacher to her kiddos. She loves chocolate, running, taking pictures, and party planning. She is also currently the creator of the Virtual Book Club for Kids.


Pregnancy has been a theme on Parenting in the Loop during the past 11 weeks. Fashion and pregnancy can be a challenge right from the beginning. A few years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting Amy Tara Koch at a luncheon. I was taken with her style and her book Bump It Up. She has some wonderful suggestions for the fashionista momma to be, spiced up with Amy’s sense of humor. Please enjoy!




1. When your jeans or trousers still fit everywhere except the belly, a SIMPLE RUBBER BAND can offer an additional breathing room. Leave jeans unfastened and loop the rubber band around the button and button hole. This sartorial trickery is easily concealed with a hip length tee shirt, some sassy, dangly scarves or a cute scarf worn as a wide Kimono belt.


Enjoy the weekend everybody!

Weekend Nap



TGIF-Weekend Reading….

Weekend Reading!

bicycle in snow...maybe not this weekend

My picks for weekend reading after another cold week here in Chicago. The weekend looks like we will get a January thaw, you just might want to get outside or read these posts?

Daphne Brogdon is a blogger, blogger who also does stand-up comedy. She now has a gig on the Food Network, Daphne Dishes. Here is post about some of my conversation with her this week.


Today, I had the pleasure of enjoying a conference call with her. She answered questions about how she combines both worlds of blogging and cooking and how she came to the place where she is now with her own show Daphne Dishes on the Food Network.

Friends are precious and good friends are few, at least that has been my experience. What happens when a friend’s spouse dies or their child dies? How does your friendship change?


Friends are mostly a source of joy for me but as I get older I am finding that the more joy a friend brings me the more difficult it is when a friendship changes or ends.

Ringing in a New Year after the death of a spouse…how does one move on when the beloved is still inside you? One woman’s perspective:


So many of the men I meet on Match — the ones who are widowers, not those who are divorced — are still mourning the love of their life. She, their late wife, the mother of their children and grandmother of their children’s children, laughed at his jokes, travelled the world with him, comforted and warmed his bed at night. Now she is gone, never to return. After a while he feels the pull of the body’s biology and the heart’s longing, as do we all. “She” is not coming back, one must move on, so who else might there be, out there, he wonders, in the world-at-large?

So how does one move on, when the love of your life is gone, be it your husband or wife or another soul mate with whom you shared a life for many years or for several decades? In truth, you don’t move on; the beloved is still inside you. You just make room in your life for a new relationship, internally and externally, grateful to have had what you had, and grateful as well for the opportunity to care romantically for another human being before you “shuffle off this mortal coil.”


Here’s to a wonderful, warm weekend! Warm is relative!

TGIF-Weekend Reading….

Weekend Reading!

My picks for weekend reading

After an arctic cold week here in Chicago, I am really glad to see Friday and the weekend roll around, with the sun shining outside my window as I write this post. I am not letting the sun fool me – it is only 7 degrees outside with a below zero windchill of minus 11 degrees! Yikes!

I am going to post a picture that you can use for some meditation or as just a reminder of a more comfortable summer day on the water-my personal happy place!


A Day at the Beach…Martha’s Vineyard


Seeking women over 50! Do you want to make a big change in 2015? Read this, it might help you with your resolution.


Dear Readers,

We’re seeking 15 women age 50 and older who plan to make a radical change in their lives in 2015. Whether your New Year’s resolution is to strike out on your own, reinvigorate your marriage, get healthy — through diet, exercise or something else — start a business, adopt a child, overcome a fear or learn a new skill in 2015, we want to hear from you. The aim is to create an inspiring initiative that reminds us it’s never too late to change your life, pursue your passion, or prioritize personal happiness and wellbeing over traditional definitions


How do kids organize and control their world. There is no gray for them, knowing this just might help you understand their behavior.


In fact, black-or-white thinking helps kids organize and control their world. As they put things into one of two categories – like or dislike, fun or boring – they make predictions about behaviors and situations. Being able to do this shows they can understand two very different ideas at the same time.


How are you going to find social connections as you get older? Do you respect the Virtual Village concept?


Then he ran across the idea of virtual retirement villages, whose members pay a yearly fee to gain access to resources and social connections that help them age in place. Sold on the concept, Mr. Cloud joined with some friends to start Capital City Village four years ago.

I hope you all have a warm and wonderful weekend!