Is There a Toddler Copycat in Your Midst?

Your Little Toddler Copycat

Your toddler won’t be able to carry on a conversation just yet, but don’t be surprised if he starts mimicking your telephone style with his toy phone. You may also catch him imitating the way you act behind the wheel of the car, preparing meals, or cleaning the house. This copycat behavior can be charming or potentially embarrassing. Now’s a good time to pay extra attention to your own language and behavior. via Baby Center

Toddler at the beach

We have a toddler in our house and he is the cutest when he imitates his mom (my daughter) and his dad.

He loves to take a napkin or paper towel and clean his place at the table or the top of his high chair and just about anything else in his reach.

It is only a matter of time when he will imitate the things his mom and dad and anyone else in earshot says.

It is now time to make sure that what we say is something that we would not mind him repeating. Personally, I find the car a place where I might exclaim words that I would not like to hear him say…even thought when a child imitates our behavior we tend to laugh which only encourages him to keep saying things that are not appropriate.

So just remember that the toddler in your midst is listening to everything and is already planning to embarrass you when you least expect it.

Halloween Weekend Picks from Parenting in the Loop

Halloween Weekend Picks from Parenting in the Loop

Over the years, Halloween has changed in the way we celebrate with kids.

As a grandmother, I remember pretty much freedom circa 1950’s, when I went “Trick or Treating” with friends in our very large sprawling Yonkers, New York apartment complex still known as Glenwood Gardens. So much was different! Seven six story buildings were connected by a winding basement which became our Halloween parade route. All in all we fearlessly rang the bell of about 108 apartments and collected candy from almost everyone. Sometimes we would have to go back home to empty our stash so that we could go back out and collect more.

This weekend begins the Halloween celebrations so get ready to see costumed adults and children trick or treating at your door on Monday!

Here are my reading picks to keep the holiday a happy one for kids and parents!

Halloween is a time for fun and exciting costumes, trying to scare others as well as getting to go out trick-or-treating with your children, but as your children get older, around 4 years of age (from my personal experience) it is time to talk about dealing strangers. Here’s some tips for talking to your child about strangers and staying safe on Halloween.

Source: Dr Dina Kulik Talking to Your Kids About Strangers and Staying Safe on Halloween – Dr Dina Kulik

If you see a Teal Pumpkin this weekend it means that the treats given out will be okay for kids with food allergies. Halloween Weekend

Teal pumpkins have become the symbol of food allergy awareness at Halloween. When you see a teal pumpkin, it means that non-food treats are available for kids with food allergies or other dietary restrictions.

Source: Will You Keep It Teal for this Halloween

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!

We will watching the World Series what about you?

Rules for Visiting A Newborn Baby

Visiting a Newborn Baby

visiting a newborn baby

Rule of Thumb:

When visiting a newborn  baby, it is so important to follow some simple etiquette so that you do not add to the stress of the new mom.

All mothers and fathers are different and appreciate different levels of support. While this list won’t be absolutely everyone’s cup of tea, they are points that are made many a time by new mothers. Put your feelers out, start with the list and ask for any feedback. The best thing you can do is to ask, not assume or take it upon yourself to do what you’d like for yourself. This is the key to maintaining strong, close relationships with those who have just had a baby.


  • Do not smoke- smoking including second hand is not good for baby
  • Do not hold hot drinks while holding the baby
  • Do not arrive late
  • Do not assume you can bring your children with you
  • Avoid visiting if you are sick
  • Avoid staying too long
  • Avoid giving unsolicited advice

Of course, this is only a synopsis but you can check out the above link to get a more extensive list of things to avoid when visiting a newborn baby.

I would also bring some food for the parents, as cooking can be difficult, if you know what I mean!

My Weekly Review

Weekly Review

Each week so many interesting reads come across my feed that I want to share. It is truly impossibly difficult to sometimes choose which ones to include here.

summer review

That being said, here is my review for last week. I will try to post these each Friday for weekend reading…instead of a summer novel.

My favorite by far, is this article about keeping your child safe from ticks and Lyme Disease while they go off to camp. I am amazed I did not research this one myself as I am obsessed with all diseases that could affect my kids and now my grandchild. I admire this mom’s approach to prevention against a very serious disease threat.

The season of sleep-away camp is upon us, and in our house that means it’s time for the yearly pesticide ritual.



How are you raising your kids and grandkids? Do you encourage their dreams or are you more of a realist? Personally, I love to dream and think that it is nice not to thwart creativity by being too much of back to reality thinker especially when it comes to children.



My parents never allowed me to set boundaries on my aspirations. They encouraged travel, they pushed me into new experiences, and they never laughed at any of my lofty goals, even when they knew my dreams were outside the bounds of reason. They listened as I spoke of opening an orphanage in Russia, of writing ten best selling books before I turned 30, and of somehow still getting that ever elusive Oscar.      

Now this is going to be a very controversial case. But the sad fact here is that many kids unfortunately die in hot cars during the summer months because they are left for even a short time alone in a sweltering vehicle. Please never leave a child alone in a vehicle for any reason as it is simply not safe and in many states it is illegal and you could be charged with child endangerment.


To the authorities in suburban Cobb County, the vehicle is the place where Justin Ross Harris murdered his 22-month-old son, Cooper, by leaving him in a rear-facing car seat for about seven hours on a warm Southern day.



These are my top three selections for review this week. I hope that you get a chance to click on at least one if not all and that you enjoy reading them. Each week I will try and select some good articles that relate to parenting, kids and various other topics.

Look for “My Weekly Review” each Friday!


Friday Fun…Chicago my kind of town!

Happy Friday Everyone. from Chicago…


I love Mondays and Fridays…what about you? The beginning and the end…alpha and omega!

Today, it is super sunny here and hopefully Spring will really be making an attempt at revealing herself. Luckily, I will be in Chicago to enjoy some of the gorgeous weather and I will be breathing in the excitement that a city of stature brings to me.

Most Fridays… I am downtown and it has become one of my favorite moments of the week. I am a people watcher and have always made up stories about people that I see along my way through the day. I am judgmental in that way.

This week, I made two trips to Chicago. I met a mom toting three children in Starbucks on Tuesday. She was relaxed and enjoying the moment. She had twin girls, who were 4 years old and a little boy 18 months in her arms. I immediately thought to myself, how cute and calm she was and how awesome that she could negotiate crossing a busy street with three kids. She ordered her coffee and I ordered my Chai…we chatted. I told her of my admiration and that I wished to live in the city again but wasn’t sure how it would be with a 5 year old grandchild. She told me that she was planning a move to the burbs in a year or two…maybe we could swap homes I thought. Then I learned something about Starbucks…they have these little things that look like toothpicks at the the pick-up counter. If you need to plug the opening in your take out lid…pick one up. It prevents you from being scalded as you carry your coffee to your destination…genious!  I love this stuff!

We parted ways and I continued on to my appointment with the plug in the lid of my cup…no more spills for me! I thought about this mom’s calmness and realized that I probably was never quite like her as I only had two kids in tow at any given moment when I was her age. I didn’t live in the city either…I lived in a Florida beach town and then a Chicago suburb.

I love these brief encounters and I really enjoy the ones where I meet friendly folks who share a little of themselves…not too much…just enough to make my day!

What about you?

How do you like your days…do you enjoy chance encounters…do you talk to folks in a line for coffee? Or…do you feel invaded when someone like me speaks to you, when all you want is to get your damn coffee and get out of there.

Thank you “City of Big Shoulders” for being a “friendly” city when it comes to people like myself!

Oh…please visit me at ChicagoNow and my new blog…Today’s Grandmum!




Too Many Toys, Do You Want Some Alternatives?


As I stare at all the toys strewn around my family room, I wonder what I can actually put away, giveaway or throw away. I am sure that many of you face the same issue with kids toys.

It is true that children learn from even the most basic household items…so why all these toys?

Well, many are impulse purchases and an equal number are gifts.

How do you control the number of toys in your midst….especially when there are 2 or more children in the home?

As you know I am a fan of Janet Lansbury. This morning I came across this article for those of you looking for household items that turn a child’s world into a discovery adventure.


A couple of thoughts:

1. Allow your child to enjoy discovering them. Rather than presenting the jars to your child, include them in his or her play area, either with the tops on loosely or already separated.


2. Let whatever is, be. Trust children to use the jars their way and in their time.


3. Remember that young children are process oriented. If the jars are loosely closed, they will accept them that way, at least for a while. If you’ve left the jars and lids separated, there’s no need for your child to know that they are supposed to go together.


4. Let go of the impulse to tell or show children what the jars do, because this will likely create stress that is totally unnecessary and a dependency on the adult to fix something that otherwise wouldn’t need fixing. Again, let what is, be, and you will make room for independent, experiential learning and the power of discovery.


5. Relax, observe and enjoy your child’s experiments with the jars and the way she uses them in conjunction with her other toys.

via Unexpected Toy Find! | Janet Lansbury.

Week in Review from Parenting in the Loop

Here are my pick reads for the week.

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!


Many of us want to have it all…but let’s be real…is it possible? My guess is, it depends on what “all” means to each one of us. Our definition of “all” may also change and morph over time just as we ourselves do. Marissa Mayer is the new, young, mother-to-be, CEO of Yahoo. This week she is causing a stir and is a trending topic among moms. It seems, she plans to work right through her maternity leave…does she not have a clue how becoming a parent changes your perspective. That is not to say that her plans are not “realistic” for her. What it seems to say is, she has no experience to reference her wishes as to how she will handle motherhood and a high profile job.

What does a beach day look like from Mom’s lens?  This is a wonderful version of a summer day of fun and frolic.

Does it sound like something that you have experienced as a Mom or Dad?

“Mothers feel so overwhelmed by the sexualizing messages their daughters are receiving from the media that they feel they can do nothing to help,” she said. “Our studys findings indicate otherwise — we found that in actuality, mothers are key players in whether or not their daughters sexualize themselves. Moms can help their daughters navigate a sexualizing world by instructing their daughters about their values and by not demonstrating objectified and sexualized behaviors themselves.”

Week in Review….ParentingintheLoop!

Summer Solstice… NYC


Healthy Child Healthy World is one of my favorite sites for excellent information…this week has been a long one for me but I would love to share these wonderful articles that as so apropos for summer.

Have a great weekend!

See you all next week…hopefully!

  • The dog days of summer have arrived early at Chez Sorensen and my girls are practically living in the pool. I love that they’re spending oodles of time outdoors, but we’re going through copious amounts of sunscreen and my kids aren’t exactly fond of the laborious effort it takes to slather their bodies repeatedly throughout the day.

via 3 Sunscreen Safety Tips You Probably Don’t Know, But Definitely Should | Healthy Child Healthy World.

  • Dr. Harvey Karp is a legend at Healthy Child Healthy World. Dr. Karp is a founding board member and a driving force behind the work we do every day.

via Dr. Harvey Karp, America’s #1 Pediatrician, Makes a Housecall | Healthy Child Healthy World.

  • Vegetarian PestoFresh and flavorful! Check out this recipe for a versatile and vegetarian pesto that you can use all summer!

via Vegetarian Pesto | Healthy Child Healthy World.

Chicago Bean at Sunrise

Photos of “my two Cities”… via Flickr…


Ripples of Child Molestation…

Child Molestation is a Crime | Kid Scoop.

I read this post yesterday and it made me sad and angry.

Today, I am listening to the Penn State sexual abuse scandal being reported in the morning news as the Sandusky trial is beginning to get under way… so many thoughts are running through my head.

As a social work and nursing student, I saw more child abuse/sexual abuse than I ever wanted to witness. It was very sad and disturbing.  At that time in my life, my feelings of sadness did not overwhelm me because I was involved in caring for these little victims. But today, as I write the words “little victims” it feels like a knife is stabbing me in the heart.

These “little victims”are innocent children until an ” adult”  robs them of the feeling of safety. Some are robbed of their  innocence by other “children” such as cousins or friends who are not technically “adults”. Sad…very sad.

My own mother was “molested” as a young girl in the 1920’s in Brooklyn, NY…she was doing an errand for her own mother, when a shop keeper exposed himself to her. That event affected my mother, my grandmother, me, my children and on and on…

I was warned of stranger danger as a young child…as early as I can remember…my grandmother told me to tell her of anything “strange” and to be careful on my way to and from school. In the 50’s and 60’s we walked to school through a large park in Yonkers, NY. Parks were places where “things” could happen…”caution and be aware”…all warnings from my grandmother.

When my own girls were young…I suspected even parents of their schoolmates …I know this is sick…Right?  But when my kids would repeat some “off color sexual” jokes that their “school mates” would recount after hearing these jokes supposedly from their parents, the hair  would stand up on the back of my neck.

As a young mother, I remember being keenly aware of situations that made me uncomfortable, while at the same time trying not to alarm my kids. I was always trying to keep communication open….not easy…believe me.

Now… I have been talking mostly about girls…nothing is to say that boys are not equally at risk for child molestation. My thoughts are that Penn State has certainly brought this into the forefront or has it? Some of my young therapy patients were young boys who were molested by their fathers, grandfathers, uncles, cousins or their mom’s friends. Some of these molestations were covered up by moms, who, for various reasons, refused to believe what their children were telling them … denial…at its worst.

As Meghan Gesswein states in her post …Child Molestation is a Crime …it takes away innocence….it changes lives all around.

Child molestation causes ripples that keep going and never cease, just like the ripples of the tide on the shore.

Sometimes, the ripples will become tidal waves and do some irreparable damage…other times, the ripples will just quietly erode the beach, seemingly without notice.

My hope is to support people like Meghan, who share their stories and provide a place where others can also share how certain “life” storms changed the flow of their lives forever.

How Being Molested as a Child has Shaped the way I Parent.


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