“Week in Review” from ParentingintheLoop

Tantrum discussions are trending…but then when aren’t they trending online somewhere in the parenting/grandparenting sphere?

Here are my picks this week.

I hope you all have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend…we are trying to capture some last rays of the summer, leaving our footprints in the sand and making memories to last us through the coming Fall and Winter.

The study, led by  Lauren Wakschlag, Ph.D., also debunked the common belief that temper tantrums are rampant among young children. Although temper tantrums among preschoolers are common, they are not particularly frequent, the research shows. Less than 10 percent of young children have a daily tantrum. That pattern is similar for girls and boys, poor and non-poor children, and Hispanic, white, and African-American children.The study found key differences between “typical” tantrums and “atypical” tantrums.

Very interesting information regarding typical and atypical tantrums, if you have a question about your preschooler’s meltdowns you might want to check out this new information from Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

This post from Core Parenting, discusses how to deal with a tantrum with emotional competence. Agree or disagree it just might help get you through the next toddler/preschooler meltdown.

So the next time your child has big emotion, change the way you think and see and respond in the moment. Change your thoughts from “Oh no, not again!” to “Yes! Another opportunity to practice emotional competence!” Take a deep breath and be amazed at the hard work your child is doing. Learning about emotions is difficult, engaging work. Be there, by their side.

Sick Days and Preschoolers

School days bring sick days…children somehow pass around the nastiest of germs. Fevers  from unknown viruses seem to be the most common and the most perplexing. None of us like to see our little one suffering from a fever.

Coughs and colds come winter are common and mostly annoying with endless sniffles and runny noses. Medications to treat cough and colds are not recommended for preschoolers

A child who is puking is really a challenge….many times I have run out of towels and linens before the vomiting ends…but in all cases do not give anti-nausea meds. Consult with your pediatrician to avoid dehydration.

Baby Center has a short list of medications not to give to preschoolers.

Check it out or better yet print it out and keep handy as the “out sick season” starts with the beginning of school.


Eight medicines you shouldn’t give your preschooler | BabyCenter.


Toast Tuesday!

Vaccinate Your Effing Kids | Jessica Gottlieb A Los Angeles Mom.

Jessica makes an important statement here.

If you are deciding whether to vaccinate or not vaccinate your children, definitely do your homework. Your life and your child’s life could depend upon the decision you make.

It is important to make medical decisions based on solid research that is done by reputable researchers not based on Hollywood personalities or business men like “The Donald”.

So this Tuesday …I am recommending Jessica Gottlieb’s blog.

“Week in Review” from ParentingintheLoop

Just Around the Corner

I love to post these tidbits on Friday…I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.

Fall is just around the corner. Here is recipe to welcome in the season…one of my favorite combinations spicy pumpkin and chocolate chips. Do you think that this is a healthy treat? I do!

I am not a rule person and that may be one of my problems…but I do expect family members to know what needs to be done. There is parenting beyond the rulebook and I love this particular post about “parenting from scratch”. Kids learn and live by what they see and experience.

Oh, when I read this post, I could feel this mom’s frustration and it brought me back to some truly unforgettable tantrum times. What I wish I knew 30+ years ago was how to cope with these terrible parenting moments and actually empathize with my child. This article was not wasted on me as I have learned so much watching my grandchild and trying to step back and respond according to what I have read in “The Happiest Toddler on the Block” by Dr. Harvey Karp.

Kindergarten and the return of the monster tantrum | Confessions of a Dr. Mom.

Have a great weekend!

Preschool Problems…

I recently read a post which discussed whether we should be teaching our kids to hit back when another child hits them in preschool.

Personally, I think hitting back in school should not encouraged at any age much less in preschool. If a child is being hit at school, it seems to me that the teacher should intervene. If the offending child keeps hitting that calls for parent/teacher discussions.

Our preschool does not tolerate hitting and deals with these issues directly with the offending child’s family. Apologies are expected from the child doing the hitting to the child or children that he/she hit. That is usually the end of it. I am not sure what happens if this type of behavior continues.

It seems that encouraging a child to hit back does nothing to solve the problem…it merely tells another child that hitting is okay in certain instances. To me, preschoolers, do not seem to have the ability to differentiate between when hitting back may in fact be appropriate.

I think preschoolers should defend themselves by telling the teacher and telling their parents.

The parent should then make sure that this is resolved swiftly and appropriately.

What do you think about teaching your preschool child to defend him/herself? Would you encourage hitting back? If so under what circumstances would you think hitting back was okay?

Do dads feel differently about this problem?


Healthy Eating with Kids in the House

This NYTimes article speaks to me…

Many days I prepare food for my family.

As a grandmother, I am concerned about having a balance of foods for my preschool grandchild. Children need a certain amount of fats, and carbs that my husband and I can definitely do without.

We all deserve a trip to the ice cream shop once in a while but summertime makes ice cream frequently a desirable dessert destination. When we are in New England …there seems to be ice cream shoppes on every block…fresh homemade flavors topped with childhood memories…truly tempting and too often indulged in.

One of my favorite comfort foods is pasta…any kind served with marinara sauce. I enjoy regular semolina thin spaghetti or linguine. It just happens that the rest of my family loves this meal as well but they also want meatballs which is not a big deal and very delicious.

Recently, I have found a pasta that suits me and my husband ….it is Barilla Plus…and I have to say, I find it tastier than whole wheat pastas, many of which I find just not a suitable replacement for regular pasta. Barilla Plus has bridged this gourmet gap, at least for me.

But back to kids’ foods. My grandchild enjoys a good mac’n cheese and so do I. More often than not, I am tempted to eat her leftovers…more calories, carbs and fats. Not so good for my waistline or my cholesterol levels.

What is a conscientious parent or grandparent to do? It is not an easy answer…for me it is will power and a constant effort not to become a garbage pail.

My guidelines:

  • Do not share your child or grandchild’s food or snacks
  • Do not clean a child’s plate by eating the forbidden foods yourself.
  • Make a selection of foods and serve them at the stove so parents eat more protein and less potatoes.
  • Choose a lower fat soft ice cream or frozen yogurt if you must indulge at the ice cream shoppe.
  • If you head for fast foods get a salad for yourself and don’t share your kids’ food

Much easier said than done, especially when I have made crepe style pancakes with maple syrup, fresh whipped cream and berries for breakfast. Believe me, when I say it is next to impossible not to indulge.

This summer the scale has not been kind to me and I know it is because I am snacking and eating when I should not be.

I am reminded of a time years ago when my teenage niece lived with our family. I began snacking with her after school…she was an eighth grader who enjoyed Ramen noodles every day. It was a habit she had developed after living in Korea for a few years.  It became a new habit for me. She also enjoyed Snickers  another love of mine. Daily, I joined her in an afternoon binge as we discussed her school day. Then a few hours later we would sit down to dinner with two preschoolers and my husband.

It did not take long for me to start gaining weight. I stopped snacking with her and all was well my weight returned to “normal”.

This time around, as a grandmother, it is not so easy to shed the pounds. As fall approaches and school re-opens maybe my daily diet will return to normal and some of the summer weight will disappear with vigilant eating habits and some more exercise.

Do you find yourself eating more like your kids and grandkids?

How do you balance your adult diet with what is healthy for your kids and grandkids?


All food opinions are my own, any brands mentioned are personal choices. I was not compensated for mentioning any particular brand in this post.

Dads Often Find It Difficult to Eat Healthy – NYTimes.com.

Blog Boundaries-Followup

Blog Boundaries – Follow-up

Here is a message that I received a few minutes ago from the editors at Babble.com.

Thanks for you note, Loretta. We very much appreciate your feedback. Please note that all comments revealing identities, unrelated to the issue at hand, or those considered “unduly hostile” have been removed. We’re still in the process of monitoring the post, so it’s very possible that we may remove more. Again, we appreciate your concern and thanks for letting us know your thoughts. -Babble Editors


I am happy to see Babble take the reins in this issue.

Thank you all for reading and I am always appreciative of your comments.

Related Post:

Blog Boundaries…where do you draw the line?



Toast Tuesday!

Toast Tuesday!

This Tuesday, I am going to simply pick a blog post that I like.

We are currently inundated with “back to school” posts so this one caught my eye as one that deals with another mom moment.

What about the mom who is going back to work after having a baby?

This is a very emotional moment and those feelings are captured so well in this post from NewParent.com.

Returning to Work After Maternity Leave | New Parent.

What was your experience when you returned to work after having a baby? How did you deal with your feelings?



Blog Boundaries, Where Do You Draw the Line?

Volleying Back and Forth with Comments


This past week I have been following Christine Coppa’s blog on Babble.com. Christine’s blog is one that I have “toasted” to in my Tuesday posts.  One of her recent posts has stirred up a lot of her reader, me being one of them.

As you may know, I am a clinical social worker, a maternal child nurse and a blogger. I have worked with families and children for over 35 years. Since I began blogging, I have been reading many blogs written by moms, Christine’s blog being one of them.

Some of these moms write for Babble.com and other blog groups. They write from their perspective and many are personal. Some topics are of course more controversial than others and generate more interest and comments.

More than a week ago, Christine Coppa wrote a piece about whether parents should split the costs of a birthday party. What followed in the comments violated my idea of boundaries. Many of the comments were totally unrelated to the initial discussion. They were commenters’ personal feelings towards the father of Christine’s son, who for his own reasons chooses not to recognize his son. One commenter bashed Christine and her family in uncalled for ways.

For whatever reason, Babble’s editors chose to support Christine’s wish to keep these comments on her site even though they stated that their policy is to not publish hostile comments.

There were a handful of comments including my own that felt this line of commenting was not only unpleasant but that it could be potentially harmful to Christine’s 5 year old son in the future. It was said in several comments that this kind of back and forth “slinging” of angry words would be better kept private.

Needless to say for various reasons this was Christine Coppa’s most viewed Babble blog. I am not sure what that says, after reading most of the comments which had nothing to do with the original topic. To me it was an airing of dirty laundry, which generated the popularity of this post and at whose expense?

I have often thought about boundaries when it comes to airing one’s life on a blog and it seems that it gets even more complicated when you are getting paid to do so and it involves a young child.

I  also do not find it appropriate when the blogger/writer gets hostile in her own comments. I lose respect for the writer at that point especially where a young child is concerned. The comments that were made with concern for JD and the effect this might have on him in the future were met with anger although I did see some acceptance of the comment from a lawyer who deals with families in conflict. One of my comments was not even published and I am not sure why.

I also sent a message to Babble via their Facebook page asking why they did not uphold their own policies in this case especially where a young child is involved. I have gotten no response so far.

Are numbers of readers so important to a blog that a child’s boundaries are all but ignored?

Do you think that boundaries are important for mom/dad bloggers who discuss personal family issues? Do you have concern for the possible long range effects of this type of blog on children?

I would be happy to hear your opinions?


I will continue to support Ms. Coppa’s blog even though I disagree wholeheartedly the way this comment section was handled. I am disappointed in the Babble editors decision.



I visited the link above and the very hostile comments have been removed from this particular post at “Kid Scoop”. Without these comments, it will be difficult to fully appreciate what I wrote in the above post.

I am glad that the comments are no longer able to be viewed.




Week in Review….Parenting in the Loop

Summer Sailing

Happy Friday everyone…here in Chicagoland, it is going to be a very pleasant weekend…a great one for the Air and Water Show! It is one of the summer events that always is amazing!

Here are my pick reads for one of the last summer weekends before school reopens and we start to feel the presence of Fall creeping up to greet us.


Getting your mojo back is critical for your quality of life so it’s cause for some radical changes and the outright shattering of your own conventional wisdom. Face it – feeling passionate and motivated every day for your work, family and self is a win for yourself and those that depend on you.

I always want to make more time for important stuff like paying attention to family and having time for what is meaningful…don’t you. It is nice to see that others have the same difficulties getting things done to make room for family fun.

I love this site. It has great little ideas for moms and grandmothers…you can follow on FB, Twitter, Pinterest or receive e-mails. Worth a look!

My long time dream is to shop for food like I did when I was a single city dweller in NY or similar to Europeans in Paris or Rome. Shopping for fresh ingredients each day and making a dinner from my imagination is truly just that …a dream! But this shopping cart bag makes me think of perusing small fruit and vegetable stands, and visiting the butcher, baker and candle stick maker. What about you? What is your dream when it comes to preparing dinner.