Routines Support the Family

A mother crouches to her young daughter and smiles while her daughter holds a teddy bear.

If your schedule in December was anything like mine, our routines were really mixed up. We spent more time celebrating with family and friends and our eating and sleeping schedules were more flexible than usual. 

When holidays are over, getting back to a regular schedule or routine can provide the structure and safety that most families appreciate. When children have an understanding of the routines, they can manage their feelings and behaviors, because they will know what to expect, or what is happening next.

When we throw the schedule out the window and don’t get enough rest, or forget to eat, sleep and exercise at regular intervals, that will impact our mood and behaviors! According to research reported in the Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology, parents who follow daily routines may benefit from time management skills and a reduction in attention difficulties. The same study also suggests that children who know what to expect on a daily basis are more likely to feel a sense of family stability than those who experience randomness in schedule.

Children and families who have enjoyed a few days break from school and work must now settle back into the familiar routine again. Children and youth do best when routines are regular, predictable, and consistent. A study published in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics reports that family routines support children and their emotional development. And it is the social / emotional health that enables children to thrive in the classroom.

Routines that include singing, bedtime snacks, storytelling and connection with family caregivers is helpful for a good night’s rest. The nurturing we do to help children adjust to everyday routines is proving to be helpful for long term adjustment in both school and home settings. Take a moment to think about just one thing you could to do to help the adjustment back to routine in either your home or school setting.

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Expressing Appreciation with Thank You Notes

Thank You

The holidays have passed, and now is the perfect time to get busy giving thanks to the many people who helped to make the holiday a special time for all of us. As adults, we know how good it feels to be appreciated. Teaching other family members how to express appreciation is truly a gift that will keep on giving as the years go by!

Giving thanks can take many forms: writing a note, talking by telephone, listening and sharing conversation with someone face to face. The effort we make in showing thanks will spread cheer and good will for many holidays to come!

If you are trying to teach children about writing thank you notes, here are a few helpful hints:

1. Greet the giver:Dear Aunt Karen,
2. Express gratitude:Thank you so very kindly for the new books and puzzles.
3. Discuss use:I will enjoy these when I have reading time, just before bedtime! I can also share the puzzles when my friends come to play.
4. Mention the past: It was so nice to see you at the holiday!
5. Say it again: Thanks again for remembering me with gifts!
6. Regards: Love, Susie

The fun part is putting together all the materials that can make the thank you cards special. Find some stationery, plain note cards or a selection of attractive postcards, along with colored pencils or pens, perhaps a few stickers and proper postage. Store all these items somewhere easily accessible and preferably in plain sight, so you won’t forget! People like being appreciated, and if they feel you notice the nice things, they do for you, they’re more likely to repeat their generosity.

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Goal Setting for Your Family in the New Year

Father and daughter laying on floor writing on a pad of paper

Are you someone who likes to set goals? Do you find the start of a new year the perfect time to make lists of opportunities and challenges your family can accomplish during the year? Many people like to make resolutions, so perhaps your family too can establish some resolutions, goals, or challenges that can be achieved. I recommend you start with self-care!

Self-care is the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health. We can apply this same definition to the family, and together identify a set of habits that can improve the overall health of our family.

Self-care may be reflected in how we eat, sleep, and take care of ourselves. Do we get enough exercise? Do we drink enough water? How many hours of sleep are members of our family getting each night? The answers to these questions could become the beginning of our family resolutions for the year.

Keeping lines of communication open with one another is an important family consideration. Could you set aside time once a week, to gather all family members, and celebrate your weekly accomplishments? Give family members time to share things they learned about themselves during the week and offer members time to ask for help if needed for the week ahead. And even more important, share family schedules so that everyone knows the plans for the week.

Do family members share responsibility for the meals that are shared during the week? Many families keep busy schedules so talking about meal time during the family meeting will help meal time be more organized. Older siblings might even help prepare the meal, and often, when kids are involved in meal preparation, they are more likely to eat what is served. Check out the Spend Smart Eat Smart website for meal planning and recipes your family might enjoy.

Parents can model the benefits of goal setting by encouraging family participation in identifying goals and charting progress throughout the year!

Success is built one step at a time, and today is the best day to begin! Happy New Year!

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Help we are all inside -TOGETHER! Stop. Breathe. Talk.

As winter begins, those of us here at the Science of Parenting are snuggled deep in our blankets and sweaters. Realizing that most of you probably are too, we decided that it might be a good time to revisit the idea of Stop. Breathe. Talk. With winter break upon us, a multitude of people inhabiting enclosed spaces and perhaps even getting on each other’s nerves.

Full disclosure my children are all at home and currently not speaking to each other for this very reason. I decided that not only could I implement Stop. Breathe. Talk. myself (model it for my children), but I could also actually TEACH them the technique. I realize that yes, my children are teens and are better able to understand and logically (sort of) think through the process, but honestly even when they were younger I utilized the technique as well. It just didn’t have the NAME then. It is always OK to help a child at any age learn to stop and take a deep breathe to help calm them down.

oP Stop. Breathe. Talk.

Stop. Actively recognizing that the situation or current moment has to change. This is a conscious decision to change the direction of thoughts, emotions and behaviors. We just plain recognize that something right this second has to change. And it starts with us.

Breathe. Literally showing them the biggest deepest breathe you can (because they need to SEE you do it) can slow their heart rate (and yours) in a way that can begin to cool down the intense moments.

Talk. Finding and using the calm, cool, collected voice also helps to reduce the tension in the shoulders and jaw allowing the opportunity for our face to show a sense of peace.

Guidance and discipline, when intentionally planned in thought and action, can be effective for your family. Remember to look through our guidance resources on the science of website parenting to see how you can be purposeful with your child. Also check out our resources for parenting teens. In the meantime, Stay warm, and happy holidays!


This blog was originally posted on 1/30/19: Help! We Are All Inside- Together.

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Mother of three. Lover of all things child development related. Fascinated by temperament and brain development. Professional background with families, child care providers, teachers and community service entities.

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Making it ALL happen. Holiday Overload.

A woman stands in front of a white wall with a frustrated look in her eyes as she buries her chin, mouth, and nose into the neck of her sweater.

No matter where you live or what age your children are, the last eight weeks of the calendar year can become chaotic and frenzied. The people around us are hustling and bustling and racing in ways that ultimately rub off on us, even if we don’t share or practice the same holiday festivities. All of that hustling can make us feel like we are on constant overload. I know that I have heard myself literally saying out loud to my children, “We just have to concentrate on the very next thing. Just the very next thing.” 

So how do we cope during the hustle and bustle?

Here are a few ideas:

  1. Yes, literally, just focus on and be present in the very next thing. Stay with it, live in it and by all means enjoy and embrace it if it involves your family, friends and children. Give THAT thing your all. The rest can wait.
  2. Grant yourself grace. Sometimes you need a reminder that everything does not and will not be perfectly orchestrated, designed and produced. Just do what you are able and call it good.  (Let someone else load the dishwasher and do NOT go back and re-do it).
  3. Write a 5 minute break in your calendar day. Set a phone alarm or reminder that forces you to stop for a moment and tell yourself that a short break is A-OK.  Deep breathe and drink a large glass of water. Stretch and give yourself a big hug. And if you happen to do it in front of your child then they will also learn that it is alright to give yourself a moment to ‘just be’.

You don’t have to make it ALL happen. Focus on the present, give yourself grace, and take a moment to practice self-care. Bonus: by modeling this during the busy times of year, your kids will learn this approach, too!

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Mother of three. Lover of all things child development related. Fascinated by temperament and brain development. Professional background with families, child care providers, teachers and community service entities.

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Consider Giving Kids Less Stuff, More Time during Holidays

A father and his two sons happily wrestle a football from one another while they play in the yard.

Although the holidays can be a season of giving, sometimes the focus shifts to a season of getting, or so it may seem from a child’s perspective. It’s OK to give gifts to our children. We all want to see our children happy, and as parents we give from the goodness of our hearts. However, it’s easy to overdo it, especially around the holidays. This can become a pattern, and before we know it, we’re overindulging our children – giving them too much, too soon and for too long.

Research shows that overindulging children puts them at risk for a variety of negative outcomes, including a need for immediate gratification, an overblown sense of entitlement and a materialistic mindset and goals. Children who are overindulged may have poor self-control, as well as a more difficult time developing adult life skills.  Giving children too much stuff is just one form of overindulgence. Other forms include soft structure, meaning a lack of rules and responsibilities, and over-nurturing – doing things for children that they should be doing themselves.

So how can parents know whether they are crossing the line into overindulging their children?

Researchers Jean Illsley Clarke, David J. Bredehoft and Connie Dawson started the Overindulgence Project – Overindulgence.info – in 1996, studying the relationship between childhood overindulgence and subsequent adult problems and parenting practices. To date, they have completed 10 studies investigating overindulgence involving more than 3,500 participants.

The researchers suggest parents ask themselves four questions:

  • Do these gifts use a disproportionate amount of family resources?
  • Does what I am doing harm others, society or the planet?
  • Does this meet my needs (as the adult) more than the needs of my child?
  • Does it hinder my child from learning developmental tasks?

If parents answer yes to one or more of these questions, they probably are overindulging their children. However, there are some simple ways to get back on the right track.

  • First of all, if you have been overindulgent, take responsibility. Being in denial about it means that you can’t change anything.
  • Second, forgive yourself. If you’ve gone overboard in the past, don’t beat yourself up about it. Look at how you can move forward, do things differently and learn from your previous experience.
  • Next, work on one problem area at a time. Don’t try to suddenly change everything about your parenting style at once, as that will likely be too overwhelming. Maybe you start by deciding not to give your children so much stuff – toys, electronics, etc. – this holiday season, but consider giving them the gift of your time. For example, parents could create a “gift certificate” for a parent and child lunch date, or plan for an afternoon playing board games or having a baking day together. Or start even smaller and decide you won’t give in to your child’s next temper tantrum at the grocery store.

Just because you’ve overindulged your children in the past, doesn’t mean your children have been damaged forever. You can get back on track and raise your children to become responsible adults who show respect for others.
Share with us how you have takes steps to work on overindulging your children. Your ideas may help others!


This blog was originally posted on 12/21/16: Consider Giving Kids Less Stuff, More Time during Holidays

Mackenzie Johnson

Mackenzie Johnson

Parent to a little one with her own quirks. Celebrator of the concept of raising kids “from scratch”. Learner and lover of the parent-child relationship. Translator of research with a dose of reality. Certified Family Life Educator.

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It Can Be Hard, but We Are Thankful

Happy African American girl holding 'I'm thankful' sign and looking at camera during Thanksgiving meal with her parents.

Around Thanksgiving time, we are surrounded with messages about thankfulness. As parents, people often remind us to fully enjoy the moments with our kids because time is fleeting. While there is truth to this, at Science of Parenting we want to look at research and REALITY. We recognize that raising children can be so rewarding, but we know there are times when it’s just plain hard.

We recently added another child to our family, and let me tell you, I am basking in sweet smiles, coos, and little milestones these days. But I’m also navigating some tough stuff like a nighttime waking, spending quality time with all my kids, and finding a new routine.  On the average day my feelings can flip from exhausted to ecstatic to emotional pretty quickly.

Even if you didn’t recently add another child to your family, most of us can relate to a mixed bag of feelings that parenting can bring. At Science of Parenting, we recognize the REALITY that sometimes parenting can be so hard. It can challenge us in ways we didn’t know were even possible. And then there are the moments that we are just lit up with joy from our children. For instance, my daughter recently mastered galloping, and watching her practice her new skill makes me smile daily. It’s such a simple thing, but it brings me so much joy!

So this Thanksgiving, Science of Parenting encourages you to find those parenting moments you feel grateful for, but it’s okay if that’s not every moment of every day. And when you are having those tough moments and questions, remember that Science of Parenting is full of resources you can explore. If you have a specific question, we have a hotline for home and family questions called Answerline (1-800-262-3804 in Iowa).

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Mackenzie Johnson

Mackenzie Johnson

Parent to a little one with her own quirks. Celebrator of the concept of raising kids “from scratch”. Learner and lover of the parent-child relationship. Translator of research with a dose of reality. Certified Family Life Educator.

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Well-being During the Holidays

As I look at the calendar and think about the upcoming opportunities to celebrate with family and friends, I can feel a bit overwhelmed. The thought of keeping a clean house, purchasing food, and preparing for the many holiday meals that are shared reminds me that perhaps I can shake the overwhelm by practicing some self-care and goal setting.

Smart phone, coffee, pen and notepad with text " to do list", retro style

 Are you someone that makes lists of the things that you must accomplish? A to-do list is something that helps us stay on track. It is very easy to get distracted at work, home, and even at school. My sister refers to distractions as “shiny objects.” As a parent, she has learned to limit the “shiny object” distractions so that her boys can stay “on track.”

Prioritizing our to-do list or plan may be a needed step! How do you go about deciding what to accomplish first? Some say to do the easiest tasks first and cross them off your list. Others would advise to do the most difficult tasks when you are at your freshest. Some folks are best and brightest first thing in the morning. Others feel that the morning is a time for waking up and get their energy in the afternoon. Try to identify the time you work best and then get at it and use your energy to tackle your list. Also, break your list down into chunks: “Here is what I want to accomplish today” and “By the end of the week I will accomplish…”

Alongside the list, a few self-care rituals may assist you in handling the stress you may feel this time of year. Do you like to wake before your family to have a few moments to yourself? Do you like to find some time for exercise, maybe a quick walk after supper? Do you practice any deep breathing techniques? The self-care principals we practice can help us feel more centered and ready to tackle our lists of responsibilities.

Did you know at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, our Human Sciences specialists deliver an engaging well-being series called What About Me: My Well-being. This series focuses on more than simply nutrition and health. This series also highlights our social/emotional well-being; purpose; and financial well-being. We work alongside community organizations and work sites to deliver this free series.

Don’t let the time of year and all the tasks before you overwhelm you and steal your joy. Instead make your list, practice self-care, and remember, your friends at Iowa State University Extension and Outreach have many resources to offer!

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Holiday Tears and Tantrums

During the holiday season, watch for signs of stress in your children.  It can be a time of too little sleep and quiet moments and too much excitement, activity, and food. Is it any wonder the tears and tantrums come easily? No, I’m not talking about you – I’m thinking about the children. So here are five things I’ve found that children need during the holidays.

A small girl cries and clings too the feet of her mother

Children need consistency. Keep bedtime rituals like stories and games. Spend time cuddling on the couch. Extra hugs are in order. If you are away from home during the holidays, pack a special blankie, pillow, or stuffed toy that is a visible reminder of sameness. Children may have trouble sleeping after a big day so having a little gift or treat can help ease them into bedtime.

Children like to be part of what is happening. The “getting to help” is more important than the end product. Remind yourself everything doesn’t have to be perfect.  Look for things the children can do and don’t get uptight about messy packages or frosting on everything but the cookies.

Children want to know what is going on. Tell them where the family is going, who will be there, what will happen.  Take time to talk with them about the holiday rituals your family observes and why these are special to your family.

Children need their space. Too many people can result in overstimulation. That’s when the tears and tantrums start in. The children may not be used to having lots of extra people around or sharing their bedroom with three cousins. Try involving the children in smaller groups of friends or relatives.

Children need some quiet time. Alternate quiet activities with active ones. You can tell when the children are getting too excited, bored, or tired. Then it is time for a story, nap, or just a few minutes together with you in another room.

Now that I read back through what the children need, I’m thinking maybe it does apply to us adults too! How do you help your children enjoy the holidays in a nonstressful way?


This blog was originally posted on 12/15/11: Holiday Tears and Tantrums

Donna Donald

Donna Donald

Donna Donald is a Human Sciences specialist for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach who has spent her career working with families across the lifespan. She believes families are defined by function as well as form. Donna entered parenthood as a stepmother to three daughters and loves being a grandmother of seven young adults.

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Expressing Thanks and Practicing Generosity

Each year, as the month of November nears, I begin thinking about the Thanksgiving traditions that have been so meaningful for my family over the years. The annual “turkey trot” walk / run happens each year at the high school I attended. Another amazing tradition – a local volunteer and her family generously provide a free Thanksgiving Day meal to anyone who attends, no questions asked.

Grandfather and grandmother are taking a selfie with their grandson and granddaughter while out on a walk on a brisk day.

You, too, may have family traditions that are special at this time of year. How can we use this time of year to teach the values of generosity and thankfulness to our family members?  

One way to teach others how to be thankful and generous is to model that behavior during our everyday routines. Children who see their parents volunteering at school, church, or for something in the community learn that good things can happen when people work together. According to The Child Mind Institute, it is normal for children to be self-involved, therefore, parents must intentionally teach how and what service and generosity look like.

Thanksgiving gives us the opportunity to think of ways we can give thanks daily! Who are the people in your life that you love and appreciate? Who are the people that cheer you on, encourage you to do your best? The truth is, we can make generosity become a habit by showing gratitude to our own family members first.

Say thank you to your child for keeping the bed made or for helping to clear the table after a family meal. Show appreciation to an older sibling for reading a story to a younger sibling before bed time. In fact, parents may also choose to show gratitude to the school teacher, football coach, or other community members who make a difference in our lives.

It has often been said, we learn what we live, so let us show kindness and gratitude to others during this special time of year, and watch how it becomes a habit for you and your family.

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Holiday Celebrations: A Choice for Every Family

Not every family will celebrate holidays in the same way. For a variety of reasons, families mark holidays in their own way, and those choices should always come without judgement by others. The Halloween holiday is one of those holidays that some families will celebrate, while others will not. Over the years, the way in which the holiday is celebrated has changed and I applaud the changes as it gives families choices about how to engage.

Boy wearing a cape and mask, dressed as a super hero, takes a superhero stance with an arm in the air.

Some children will dress in costume and travel throughout the neighborhood requesting or has been known, begging, for a piece of candy. In our quest for safety and health, some families have decided to attend trunk or treats in the full daylight to celebrate the holiday. The children can dress up and “beg” for candy, yet the celebration is organized and supervised so that parents can feel better about their child’s safety. According to the Academy of Pediatrics, thinking through costume safety, food allergies, and safety around the home are all important aspects to consider. The National Safety Council also provides helpful information to prepare parents to celebrate with safety.

Another change we may see at Halloween is the transition from candy to other forms of treats including stickers, pencils, and other swag that steer clear from the sugary treats of past Halloweens. As the first educator of their children, I recognize parents who make brave decisions about how to spend precious time with their families at the holidays. Finding ways to celebrate that include extended family and friends may be more meaningful than simply following tradition for traditions sake.

Barb Dunn Swanson

Barb Dunn Swanson

With two earned degrees from Iowa State University, Barb is a Human Sciences Specialist utilizing her experience working alongside communities to develop strong youth and families! With humor and compassion, she enjoys teaching, listening and learning to learn!

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Gains from Custodial Grandfamilies & How to Help

Dr. Jeongeun (Jel) Lee

This post is the second in a series on custodial grandparenting, with information from Dr. Jeongeun (Jel) Lee, a Human Sciences Extension and Outreach State Specialist who studies gerontology. Miss last week’s post? Check it out here.

Dr Lee, last week we talked about the importance of sharing information about grandparents that are parenting their grandchildren. This week we would like to focus on some of the great things that occur. What can you share with us?

“You’re right, prior studies have often emphasized stressors and negative outcomes while disregarding the positive aspects of custodial grandfamilies. However, it is common for caregivers to report positive feelings. This includes:

  • The satisfaction of knowing that their loved one is getting excellent care, sensing personal growth, and increased purpose in one’s life.
  • Gratification from passing on a tradition of care and modeling caregiving to their grandchildren has also been reported.
  • Similarly, love for and commitment to a custodial grandchild can lend value and satisfaction to the caregiving role.

Scholars also found that the perception the grandparent has on their experience as a caregiverare associated with positive and negative well-being outcomes respectively among custodial grandparents.(Meaning that grandparents positive perceptions can create positive outcomes).”

What are some things we can do to help grandparents with their caregiving?

“It is important to validate both the positive and negative emotions expressed by custodial grandparents, explore the sources of these emotions, and help these grandparents stay positive. Assisting grandparents to modify their own expectations for caregiving is a worthy task, as the situation itself cannot necessarily be changed.”


Whitley, D. M., & Fuller-Thomson, E. (2017). African–American solo grandparents raising grandchildren: A representative profile of their health status. Journal of community health42(2), 312-323.

Custodial Grandparents, Parenting Stress, and the Loss of Self

Dr. Jeongeun (Jel) Lee

This week and next, we welcome Dr. Jeongeun (Jel) Lee, a Human Sciences Extension and Outreach State Specialist who studies gerontology. She will share her research on custodial grandfamilies and the stress, loss, and gains of this responsibility. Below is an excerpted interview.

Dr. Lee, please share with us some general information about grandparents raising their grandchildren.

“Interest in custodial grandfamilies, defined as those where grandparents provide full time care without significant involvement by grandchildren’s biological parents, has soared over the past quarter century. Currently, there are more than 2.7 million custodial grand family households in the United States serving as primary caregivers for their grandchildren without the presence of the grandchild’s parents (US census, 2012); 63% are grandmothers and 35% are grandparents of color (Whitely, 2017). Parental substance abuse, mental illness, incarceration, and child abuse/neglect are the predominant reasons grandparents are raising custodial grandchildren.”

Why is grandparents raising grandchildren something that we should give special attention to?

“Managing the care of custodial grandchildren (CGC) often requires constant attention and extensive resources. Scholars who observed grandfamilies argue that raising grandchildren can provide both emotional, physical, and financial challenges, but also provides many rewards.”

What are some challenges grandparents face?

“Part of the challenges come from the perspective of retirement. Most grandparents are at the stage where they could enjoy retirement or have other life plans but must forgo these plans and readjust their roles as parents. Given that grandparents may have different parenting strategies from current parents, this lack of knowledge or skills may also create some conflicts between generations.”

Reaching out to grandparents that are parenting their grandchildren is an important topic for communities to consider. Their challenges are unique and need focused attention.

Next week, Dr. Lee will discuss what is gained from custodial grandfamilies as well as the practical implications.


Kreider, R. M., & Ellis, R. (2011). Living arrangements of children: 2009 (Current Population Reports, P70-126). Washington, DC: U. S. Census Bureau. Retrieved from http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p70-126.pdf

Whitley, D. M., & Fuller-Thomson, E. (2017). African–American solo grandparents raising grandchildren: A representative profile of their health status. Journal of community health42(2), 312-323.

Grandfamilies 2.0

A tall teenager wearing a suit and tie stands between his grandfather and grandmother, who are looking up at him with pride.

Isn’t that a great word? I’m still smiling typing it. I found it on the AARP website while I was looking for statistics. According to their site, 4.9 million children under the age of 18 live with their grandparents. Thus making them ‘grandfamilies’ . In fact to quote the site, “As increasing numbers of grandchildren rely on grandparents for the security of a home, their grandparents are taking on more of the responsibility for raising them in a tough economy — many with work challenges of their own. For these grandparents, raising another family wasn’t part of the plan. But they step up to the plate when their loved ones need them.”

Grandfamilies, yes that’s a great word for those that are stepping up to take care of family members in need. Celebrate their commitment to family. Share their stories of greatness here.

This blog was originally posted on Nov. 15, 2013: Grandfamilies

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Mother of three. Lover of all things child development related. Fascinated by temperament and brain development. Professional background with families, child care providers, teachers and community service entities.

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Taking Time with the Grandkids 2.0

As we come into a season of spending time with family I thought I would dig into how to manage those times of ‘togetherness’. Grandparents and grandchildren can be both excited and nervous to spend time together during family functions. Children may exhibit behavior grandparents aren’t used to and that can be a confusing dilemma. Extension.org has a great article on understanding children’s behavior during these exciting family times.

Understanding Grandchildren’s Behaviors

A close up image shows a grandmother and grandfather sitting on a couch with their two granddaughters, smiling and laughing with one another.

Don’t get me wrong, spending time together with extended can be a fabulous time. In fact another article I read made me smile and think of how much I miss my own grandparents and the wonderful stories they told.

Stories about Granparents and Grandchildren

I am grateful for the many stories I heard, for grandparents that understood my nervous behaviors and for countless times spent with extended family members.

This blog was originally posted on Nov. 28, 2013: Taking Time with the Grandkids

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Lori Hayungs, M.S.

Mother of three. Lover of all things child development related. Fascinated by temperament and brain development. Professional background with families, child care providers, teachers and community service entities.

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