Hangry meltdowns and self-worth

The idea for this newsletter came directly from one mom’s post in the private coaching community that I run. Right now you can try out the community for $1 for your whole first month! Click here for details.

It’s so easy to blame ourselves for our children’s meltdowns.

Especially if they are of the “hangry” variety.

After all, isn’t it our responsibility to make sure that they get fed when they are hungry?
… And, doesn’t being hungry lead to temper tantrums?
… And, who is supposed to be feeding these kids anyway?

We can be so judgmental of ourselves, and that is way worse than when others are judgmental of us.

I’m starting a newsletter series today on how, in practical terms, we can handle the basics of “kids gone sideways”…
When they are in a big meltdown.
When they have potty accidents.
When they’re disrespectful.

And step one is to know that it’s absolutely not our fault when hangry meltdowns occur!

(Or any kind of meltdown, for that matter.) Continue reading “Hangry meltdowns and self-worth”

Controlling behavior, consequences, and connection with your young child | Podcast Episode 311

Continuing in this end-of-year “big idea” line of thinking, one of our beloved Ninja Parenting Community members recently asked a huge, and great question:

“How can I relax and enjoy our relationship more and not feel like I’m always on the edge of discipline mode or like I should have handled things differently [with my 3-year-old]?”

Effectively she’s asking: do I have to control my young child’s behavior all the time, or is there anything else besides that?

Today’s episode is my response.

Video, the notes I posted in NPC, and links to everything we talk about are located at weturnedoutokay.com/311

Join us!

Sign up for my Weekly Parenting Newsletter

Each Wednesday I send out a Parenting Newsletter, to help you stay sane while raising your kiddos.
We’re doing a series right now on what to do when you feel like a failure, and who among us hasn’t felt like that at some point?
Useful stuff.
Click weturnedoutokay.com/weekly so it zooms right into your inbox each week!

Continue reading “Controlling behavior, consequences, and connection with your young child | Podcast Episode 311”

Talking with Biz Ellis and Theresa Thorn of One Bad Mother! | Podcast Episode 297

I am super excited to bring you a conversation with two of the most beloved people in podcasting, Biz Ellis and Theresa Thorn of One Bad Mother!

Take note: there WILL be swears, so listen away from your kiddos…

Also I totally mess up in describing a genius moment of my own! (I guess that’s a fail at a genius moment : )
So in the preshow I try to rectify that.

Biz and Theresa are such generous people that, while I’m sure they were looking at each other with extremely confused “why is this a genius moment?” looks on their faces, they pressed on and shared so much amazing support for you.
For me.
For us.
For any parent who feels shamed, unappreciated, like a monumental screwup.
Biz and Theresa want you to know: you’re doing a great job!
And I want you to know: they are right <3

Watch my video on what to do when your young child is super aggressive, and how to keep your cool when the going gets tough, by clicking

Click here for the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group, where I took questions for Biz and Theresa – and where you can ask questions of future guests!
(It’s also where I do a Facebook live every Monday called Magic Words for Parents, sharing a quick word or phrase for you to take into your parenting week : )

Plus in Parenting News: My new favorite TED talk is called “Where joy hides and how to find it.” It’s amazing, and illustrates a factor that’s crucial to enjoying family life.

Join us!


Sign up for my Weekly Parenting Newsletter

Click weturnedoutokay.com/297 for lots of links from our conversation!

Today’s episode is sponsored by the amazing Janine Halloran, expert in teaching kids coping skills, and an incredible resource she has created to help your child handle even the biggest feelings!
Listen to today’s show to find out how to get 15% off your order, and then
Click copingskillsforkids.com/okay to check out Janine’s Coping Skills for Kids Cue Card Decks.

Continue reading “Talking with Biz Ellis and Theresa Thorn of One Bad Mother! | Podcast Episode 297”

So big, we don’t even see it

Happy Wednesday!

FYI: Join the Ninja Parenting Community! Through 9/30/19 I’m offering the Friends and Family membership rate to join in this private coaching community I host online for parents. Read more about this below.

Today I am sharing about an experience I had recently, of failing to see something huge and important that was literally right in front of me.
While this may seem like a peculiar subject for a newsletter about parenting, I hope you read and stay with me till the end!
It comes back to parenting, I promise <3

When I arrive at my town’s ballfields, to visit the mobile exhibit of the Vietnam War Memorial, I see several things: Continue reading “So big, we don’t even see it”

Overcoming difficult circumstances, as a parent and as a person

Happy Wednesday!

FYI: Links to each part of the in-depth, 4-part newsletter series I recently did can be found just below my signature. (Feedback was that many of you found that series super helpful and so I want it to be available all through the start to this school year!)

Today, I want to talk about what constitutes difficult circumstances, and what we can do about it when we encounter such circumstances ourselves.

The dirty little secret of difficult circumstances is:

Everybody’s got ’em.

We all have circumstances that attempt to drag us down:

  • Toxic people in our lives
  • The refrigerator or car crapping out on us
  • The funny-looking mole on our shoulder
  • Our kids wanting us and NOBODY else (or vice versa).

We can feel strangled, or buried alive.

Last week, when Jessica Lahey and KJ Dell’Antonia brought me onto their show in episode 174 of #AmWriting with Jess and KJ, I shared that one particular difficult circumstance I live with can make me feel as if I’m “drowning.” Continue reading “Overcoming difficult circumstances, as a parent and as a person”

Something to try for when it all feels like too much

Happy Wednesday!

Training update:
We’ve hit our first milestone with Educating Happy Children: 9 Ways to Help Kids Learn What They Need to Know! I was able to finish the first draft in just two weeks!

I know with certainty that the first draft of this book is done – and it is as good a draft as it could possibly be – because of you. The support, the emails, the questions and heartfelt thoughts that you have sent over these weeks mean more to me than I can say.

Plus, I am now placing advanced chapters into the Ninja Parenting Community! If you are an NPC member click here to check them out.

If you are not an NPC member yet, click here to learn more about working closely with me.
Members will tell you that, in addition to advanced chapters of my parenting books, it’s life-changing!

What’s next? Creating the cover – I hope you’ll be involved in that, helping me choose the best cover for this book.

My goal is to have cover choices for you to vote on in the next Wednesday newsletter, so stay tuned for that!

Here is what you can try when it all feels like too much:
My husband Ben and I went on our usual weekend coffee-and-a-walk date this past weekend. This walk is something we really look forward to all week, definitely one of the highlights of our routine!

When Ben suggested, about 18 months ago, that we spend time together each week, I happily agreed. But I had no idea that there’d be so many benefits to reconnecting with him in this way. These include: Continue reading “Something to try for when it all feels like too much”

Get “comfortable being uncomfortable”: Speaking with authors and world travelers Emily Orton and Erik Orton! Podcast Episode 282

Heads up: keep listening after the interview, because I read out Emily Orton’s responses to questions that were asked in the We Turned Out Okay Facebook group. Her responses are awesome and I don’t want you to miss them!

Sometimes we have down moments in our lives. Times where we second-guess ourselves and our choices; times where we’re not sure what direction to go.
That was the case for Erik Orton, at a low point in his life when a project he put all his time and energy – and his family’s financial savings – into, failed.

But something incredibly beautiful was born of that time. He and his wife Emily decided to change things up completely and go on an adventure!

Their memoir, Seven at Sea, describes the year they spent in a sailboat, traveling the world with their 5 children, the youngest of whom has Down syndrome.

If you’re stuck, if you’re feeling bogged down or not sure which way to turn, I hope this conversation helps you find a way.

Plus in Parenting News: A compelling New York Times article by Professor Emily Oster, author of the forthcoming book Cribsheet, about how parents aren’t necessarily paying attention to the child-rearing stuff that matters most.

Join us!

Go to weturnedoutokay.com/282 for:

  • A cheat sheet on the highlights of our conversation, which goes far, far beyond their year on the beloved sailboat Fezywig
  • Links that come up in today’s conversation
  • The video of the week: “How to get out of a parenting rut”

And thank you so much for listening!

Temper Tantrums, Potty Training, and Picky Eaters:

Today I share about three helpful free guides I offer.
While the podcast is long-form – your opportunity to look into the mind of a child development expert – the free guides are super quick.

You can watch the video, read the checklist, and immediately get the help you need : )

  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to Handle Every Temper Tantrum
  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to Successfully Potty Train Your Child
  • Click here for the FREE video and checklist to Handle Your Picky Eater
  • Want to receive valuable ideas and tips on parenting, without either free guide above? Click here for my weekly parenting newsletter!


Continue reading “Get “comfortable being uncomfortable”: Speaking with authors and world travelers Emily Orton and Erik Orton! Podcast Episode 282″

Be the brains

Happy Wednesday!

I want to share a goal of mine. I’m in training! I’m drafting a new parenting book and today I’m asking you to keep me on track.

And also I’m excited because I think this story that I share today could also be helpful for you, even if your struggles are different than mine.

First: I’m in training!

Longtime listeners to the podcast, and readers of this letter, might know that I have a chronic illness. A tendon disorder, that keeps me from doing a lot of things that you probably consider perfectly normal and everyday events, such as chopping vegetables, or folding laundry.

But there would be no podcast, there would be no We Turned Out Okay at all, without the tendon disorder. And that is because of something a friend said to me when I was at my worst, with just 5% use practical use of my hands. I had truly hit rock bottom. I felt like such a burden, and so useless, to those who were responsible for taking care of me; meaning my husband, Ben, and our two boys.

It should have been the other way around, I should have been taking care of them! And instead I could hardly wash my own hair or pour my own coffee.

When a friend suggested that this didn’t have to only be negative, that instead it could be positive, it opened up a whole new avenue. She said “okay, you can’t do all the normal parenting things. Or all the normal housekeeping things. So what CAN you do?” Continue reading “Be the brains”

Lessons from our digital reset

Years ago, I went to see a movie in an actual theater, on a big screen. They had this really clever ad in the lead-up to the movie where you saw all this action and excitement… and then slowly the action and excitement began shrinking.

It shrank and shrank away until it all took place in a tiny box in the middle of the screen.

And then above it appeared gigantic words, and I’m paraphrasing here, but basically they said: “don’t let your entertainment shrink down to this.”

That’s one of the last movies I ever saw in the theater.
Clearly, their plea of “keep coming to the movies!” didn’t work well on me.

For years our lives have been slowly, insidiously being taken over by tiny screens.

Maybe you have found the same thing in your life.

Over three or four years I’ve noticed:

  •  A sense of panic if I don’t have my phone on or near me
  • Despite my best efforts, trouble concentrating on the people who are right in front of me because the screen in my hand beckons
  • Hand, wrist, and forearm pain, seriously irritated by swiping, tapping, and pinching screens

Today I want to share the story of what Ben and I are doing, in our home, to reclaim the big action and excitement. I hope it helps you see a path towards taking control of screen time in your home!

Continue reading “Lessons from our digital reset”

Try Again Tomorrow

I’m re-reading one of my favorite books, Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, and one part particularly struck me in my reading last night.
It’s when main character Fanny’s grave, serious uncle agrees to allow Fanny to do something he would rather she did not: get up early after being up very late (so she can say goodbye to her brother, William, who leaves in the morning).
After much discussion Fanny’s uncle, Sir Thomas, fondly says “well, well.” And Fanny knows she has been given permission to be present at this farewell breakfast.

It got me thinking on the ways that we give, or withhold, our permission.

Oftentimes it’s a whiny, wheedling, “pleeeeease” that gets our attention, and so we give in reluctantly.
Continue reading “Try Again Tomorrow”