Parents vs. Teenagers: How to Win the Internet Battle

I love my boys. They're good kids, respectful (most of the time) and hard working (again, most of the time.) I really couldn't ask for more. I have noticed, however, that something comes over them as they become teenagers. There is a small amount of testing the boundaries. OK, some days there's a lot of testing. This is not at all unexpected and I don't think for a second that they are approaching rebellion. They just do things occasionally that they know they we've asked them not to....more
@JennaHatfield Changing the parent controls has worked really well for us. My oldest son pointed ... more

Teens Cleaning: He Thinks He's Harry Potter Apparently

We have a rule in our house that every Sunday morning the boys have to clean their rooms and bathrooms. Unlike many expats, we don't have a helper (FDW, maid, whatever you want to call them), so the boys are responsible for their own mess. I feel that at the ages of 13, 15, and 16, they are more than capable of cleaning their own rooms, changing their own beds, wiping down their bathrooms... in all their disgusting boy glory, throwing out trash, etc. Not only are they capable but, considering the fact that in a few years they will all be heading off to university and will have to take care of these things on their own, they need to master these tasks now....more
@ Shannon Robinson, I'm so glad to hear that. I was starting to think it was just boys who tried ...more

How to Annoy Your Teen:

Though I love my children dearly (even my two teenagers), their condescending tone can really get under my skin.  It’s like they think I’m an idiot, and they clearly find me embarrassing.  I don’t get it.  It’s not like I’m showing up at school in dirty sweatpants or revealing short skirts and high heels.  I’ve seen the other moms - I know there are many out there who are more embarrassing than me.  (Really.) ...more
As a mother of three teenage boys, I love your list. My personal favorite is "use their slang ...more

Where Do Moms of Teens Go?

I was looking around the internet the other day for a collaborative website (think Babble, or BlogHer) that includes A) Single moms, B) moms of teens C) Single moms of teens or any combination of the three. I mean, there are places for singles women, newly divorced/going through a divorce women, pregnant women, women with fertility issues, new mommies, mommies of newborns, multiples, toddlers, kids. But once our children near the end of their childhood and stand on the cusp of teenhood, all of sudden, us mothers are, well on our own....more
I can totally relate. I have three teenage boys and I go through the same thing. Put mine ... more

Behind the Scenes: A Travel Writer Press Junket

When I mention that I write travel features for magazines and newspapers, I invariably hear one of two responses: “If you ever need someone to come along, call me!” or “That’s what I’ve always wanted to do.” Everyone, it seems, yearns to be a travel writer. You get paid to eat at a passel of restaurants, indulge in fancy hotels, and snare lots of swag, right?...more
Sounds like two great nights! I really enjoyed reading about the press junket! Thanks for giving ...more

"I Love Daddy More Than I Love You"

“I have a secret to tell you,” he said, “And I don’t want you to get mad.” Thoughts scrolled through my mind, rapid fire: had I heard crystal shatter? No. Did the dog still have a tail? Yes. Had I consumed anything unidentified just because he asked me to? No. Is he too young to have committed a crime or surfed for online porn? Yes. I should be safe. “You can tell me anything, and I’ll try not to get mad. What’s up?” He leaned in conspiratorially. He looked left, then right (purely for drama; we were alone in the house) and whispered, “I love Daddy more than I love you.”...more
You're killing me, here! LOL! I haven't had that exact conversation but something very close to ... more

He Gets It from Me

I’m a bit anal about certain things. The cookies on the cookie sheet have to line up properly. I like them to cool in neat little rows. And don’t you dare take one out of the middle of the cooling rack without at least replacing it so they stay orderly! I used to label things, but I got teased a lot so I stopped doing it. I can’t explain it, I just like some things a certain way....more
I like your son already! Wow, a little boy who folds his laundry and sorts his toys, I'm ...more

He Gets It from Me

I’m a bit anal about certain things. The cookies on the cookie sheet have to line up properly. I like them to cool in neat little rows. And don’t you dare take one out of the middle of the cooling rack without at least replacing it so they stay orderly! I used to label things, but I got teased a lot so I stopped doing it. I can’t explain it, I just like some things a certain way....more
I totally understand. I do the check out belt too! LOL My husband finally just learned to walk ... more

He Gets It from Me

I’m a bit anal about certain things. The cookies on the cookie sheet have to line up properly. I like them to cool in neat little rows. And don’t you dare take one out of the middle of the cooling rack without at least replacing it so they stay orderly! I used to label things, but I got teased a lot so I stopped doing it. I can’t explain it, I just like some things a certain way....more
It IS our quirks that makes them love us. Apparently, I have a lot of quirks to love. LOL! ... more

He Gets It from Me

I’m a bit anal about certain things. The cookies on the cookie sheet have to line up properly. I like them to cool in neat little rows. And don’t you dare take one out of the middle of the cooling rack without at least replacing it so they stay orderly! I used to label things, but I got teased a lot so I stopped doing it. I can’t explain it, I just like some things a certain way....more
You are so not alone! LOL. :D My husband has a very haphazard approach to organizing his side ... more