Monday, August 31, 2009

News of Interest to Moms August 31, 2009

Photo by LeoSynapse/

News to know:

CDC considers promoting 'Universal Circumcision'

In an effort to reduce the spread of HIV, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) is considering recommending “universal circumcision” for all baby boys born in the United States.

Officials analyzed several studies that show in African countries hit hard by HIV, men who were circumcised reduced their infection risk by half, according to a report in the New York Times. However, those studies focused on heterosexual men who are at risk of getting HIV from infected female partners. The main issue in the U.S. is men who have sex with men.

What are the pros and cons of your daughter getting the GARDASIL® vaccine?

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

New Website!!

Please visit my new site at! My blog has been moved to


Monday, April 13, 2009

News of Interest for Moms April 13, 2009

News to know:

Swimming lessons for very young children reduces risk of drowning

Swimming lessons for very young children can reduce the risk of drowning, according to a study published in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine.

Researchers hope the findings will ease pediatricians' concerns that swimming lessons for children ages 1 to 4 increases their drowning risk. Some doctors fear parents will be less vigilant when children are near the water and that early swimming lessons will decrease children's natural - and healthy - fear of the water.

Drowning is the second-leading cause of death of infants and young children in the United States, with roughly 4,000 dying each year.

The American Academy of Pediatrics' website states: Children are generally not developmentally ready for formal swimming lessons until after their fourth birthday. Also, swimming lessons for infants and toddlers do not necessarily make them safer in or around the water and are not a recommended means of drowning prevention at these ages.

Standardized testing tips

My daughter finished her standardized testing last week. For those of you parents still staring down the process with your kiddos, here are some tips for helping your child get ready for the standardized tests in any state.

Vermont considers legalizing teen "sexting"

The Vermont Legislature is considering a bill that would legalize "sexting" between teenagers--exchanging explicit photos and videos via cell phones.

Under current laws,teens can be charged with child pornography. Lawwmakers are considering a bill to legalize the consensual exchange of graphic images between two people 13 to 18 years old. Passing along such images to others would remain a crime.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

News of Interest to Moms: April 8, 2009

News to know:

Among preschoolers, 1 in 5 is obese
Almost 1 in 5 American 4-year-olds is obese, according to a new study. Based on the research, more than half a million 4-year-olds are obese.

Obesity is more common in Hispanic and black youngsters, but the disparity is most startling in American Indians, whose rate is almost double that of whites.

Multiple births increase risk of postpartum depression

Women who give birth to twins or triplets are at higher risk of postpartum depression, according to a study in Pediatrics.

Researchers from Johns Hopkins looked at data from more than 8,000 mothers who gave birth in 2001. The study found that nine months after delivery, mothers of multiple births had 43 percent greater odds of having moderate or severe postpartum depressive symptoms compared with mothers of single babies.

April is National Autism Awareness Month.

Here are some links with additional information about autism:
Ian's Walk: A Story About Autism -- a picture book about autism

Autism Society of America

Autism Speaks

National Autism Association

Monday, April 6, 2009

Running to keep up with my caboose kiddo

"Good morning, Runner Girl!"

I tugged the blankets away from Christa's face. Even as she smiled, she squeezed her eyes shut and snuggled deeper into the bed.
A few minutes later, Christa headed to the shower, ready to start the day. A reminder of the new pair of sweat pants waiting for her lured her from the comfort of her covers.

Ah, Monday. First day of the week--and the first day of a new adventure for my caboose kiddo. Today is the first day of running club. Like any mom, I'm along for the ride--er, run.

Christa can't wait for practice this afternoon. She spent the weekend getting ready. Saturday included a trip with her dad to buy a good pair of running shoes. We added the sweat pants because four of the last five days have included snow. Ah, springtime in the Rockies!

I've paid the team fee and ordered the team t-shirt. Now all that's left to do is show up after school and enjoy the experience.

As the mom, I am invited into Christa's experience--but only so far. I can help get her ready: Pay the fee, purchase the right clothes, make sure she has a water bottle. But once she hits the field, she's on her own. I'll stand on the sidelines and cheer her on while she practices. Her dad and I will attend her races and cheer at those too.

Motherhood: that strange blend of holding on and letting go. I'm discovering it all over again as I help my eight-year-old daughter line up at the starting line and encourage her to "Get on her mark, get set, go!"

I'm experiencing just how far my children can run as I watch my twenty-something daughter, Amy, live life in Nicaragua. I never imagined Amy running quite that far when she was a little girl. But, when the time came, and she set her sights on nine months in a foreign country, I helped her get ready. I walked with her to the security area in the airport. And then I hugged her, stepped back and said, "Go!"--admittedly with a few tears.

As a mom, we have our years when we run alongside our children. We have our years when we run to keep up. And then we have our years when we watch our children run.

And all along we cheer them on.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Sexting: What's a mom to do?

Life as a mom keeps getting more and more complicated.

Back when my first three were teens, there was no such thing as "sexting"--sending sexual messages or photos via cell phones. They couldn't text at all.

Now a 14-year-old girl in New Jersey has been accused of child pornography after posting nearly 30 explicit nude pictures of herself on -- putting a whole new spin on the sexting debate.

According to a news story, the girl posted the photos because she wanted her boyfriend to see them.

Have mercy.

This much-too-young girl could become a registered sex offender if convicted.

Meanwhile, the debate rages on: Should teens be prosecuted for child pornography for sending racy text messages or posting illicit photos of themselves on the internet? Are people overreacting?

In my previous Cell phones and your kids: Sexting, anyone post, I mentioned the case involving three teenage girls who allegedly took nude or semi-nude photos of themselves. The photos were then shared on classmates' cell phones.

Earlier this week, a federal judge temporarily blocked a prosecutor from filing child pornography charges against thre girls. The American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania said the teens didn't consent to having the picture distributed and that the images are not pornographic.

Even moms are divided on how to handle teens sexting. Some parents think prosecuting teens with child pornography laws is too harsh--that we are holding teens to an adult standard. Yet, the mom of Jesse Logan thinks differently. Jesse was an 18-year-old high school student who killed herself after her ex-boyfriend sent nude pictures of her to other girls in her school. Jesse's mom wants teens to understand the dangers of sexting--and realize that they could become registered sex offenders.

Parents should be involved with their teens long before they discover racy photos on their cell phones. Parenting means relationship--and that means involvement. Yeah, sometimes our teens aren't gonna' like that. Oh, well. Who's the adult and who's the teen?

Parents need to call it straight with their teens, too. What you did--sexting to your boyfriend? That was wrong. I still love you even though you did something wrong, but I'm not going to cover for you.

We love our kids when they live less then perfect lives. We don't try to make their lives perfect for them.