Recent Posts

How parents can help when their college freshmen get sick

When College Freshmen Get Sick

College freshmen, and all other students, get sick — a lot. “Every year freshmen come into my office and say, ‘I have never been sick like this in my life. There must be something wrong with me,’” said Dr. Jeffrey Anderson, director of medical services at the University of Connecticut student health center. “And I […]

Lessons learned when your teen can't text, call or email.

No Phone Calls, No Emails, No Texts

Turns out getting all wound up about my kids’ compulsive phone use was actually a cover for my own incessant communication addiction. I’m as bad as they are. It hit me this summer when my 14-year-old son took a two-week backpacking trip in the Wyoming wilderness. Apparently the National Outdoor Leadership School doesn’t buy the […]

The unexpected college road trip that was meant to be

The Unexpected College Road Trip

This past year, my younger son and I toured a few of the colleges on his wish list. After visiting schools two years ago with his older brother, I knew these college tours were going to be as exciting as waiting in line for 26 hours to get a driver’s license, but I was looking […]

Cookbook author, Katie Workman, suggests 10 kitchen essentials

Kitchen Essentials for a First Apartment

So, your kid has his or her own first real kitchen. Maybe it’s at college, maybe they are in their first apartment, but aside from the sample sized bottle of dishwashing liquid, there’s not much there. Where to start? Here are the 10 kitchen essentials I would buy for a beginner cook. Are these the […]

The questions a high school teacher asks herself before she writes a letter of recommendation for college.

Letter of Recommendation: What Teens Need to Know

Senior year means a lot of stress for twelfth graders. These stressors all revolve around the college application, of course, or the application to a gap year program, or for a job or internship. All of these options require at least two recommendations from teachers. One of the problems with this process, however, is that […]

How parents can help their college kids drive safely back to college

25 Ways to Help Your Teen Drive Safely Back to College

This is a sponsored post by Liberty Mutual Insurance, but opinions expressed are our own. Saying goodbye to our college daughter on the steps of her freshman dorm last fall was a moment marked with a long hug, a few tears and a dollop of heartache. This fall, she will have a car at college […]

Drop Off after freshman year is all the sadness without so much worry.

College Drop Off After Freshman Year

I have seen three sons off to college and each time my heart broke and I beat myself up for feeling this way.  As each college drop off approached I listened to the chorus of those who reminded me that this was college, a good thing, a great thing, and that my pride in my son’s […]

Advice for College Move In Day

It’s Here: College Move In Day

It’s here. The day you have anticipated, dreamed about and maybe even dreaded for 18 years has arrived.  While college move in day is a proud moment for any parent that does not mean it isn’t a day filled with stress and more than a little sadness. While we have written about why we will miss […]

A letter from a mom to a daughter before freshman year.

“Love, Mama,” A Letter to My Daughter Before Freshman Year

My daughter left for college last August. This is the letter I gave her during our last family dinner at home. We laughed…we cried…and surprisingly, we let her go. Dear Daughter, Don’t go. Love, Mama Dear Daughter, No, of course that’s not my message to you. That would go against every article I’ve consumed over […]

Taylor Kay Phillips

“Dear Mom,” From Your Off to College Daughter

In examining the off to college process we have heard from the parents. We have looked at dorm shopping, adjusting to life without our kids and the silver lining that just might exist in the empty nest. But up until now we have not heard from the kids. How does it feel to be 18 […]


Advice for College Move In Day

It’s Here: College Move In Day

It’s here. The day you have anticipated, dreamed about and maybe even dreaded for 18 years has arrived.  While college move in day is a proud moment for any parent that does not mean it isn’t a day filled with stress and more than a little sadness. While we have written about why we will miss […]

calm before the storm

Calm Before the Storm, Hurricane Sandy

Dear Son, While I trust you will be absolutely fine in your college dorm room these next few days with Hurricane Sandy heading toward shore, I cannot help but worry. You may be 22 years old but my instinct to protect you and your sister will remain undiminished throughout my life. Today it is the […]

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Empty Nest

school, motivating students

College Graduation and the Parenthood Abyss

Mary Dell writes: My son, our eldest child, will celebrate his college graduation this weekend. Today, while I sit in the kitchen, I read the fine words of another mom whose child recently graduated. I begin to imagine the moment when our son’s name is called and he walks onto the stage to receive his diploma. […]

College move in day, Here is what parents need to know

Kids Going to College: Getting Your Heart and Head Ready

Parenthood has two big transitions, when our children arrive and when they leave. Mary Dell and I managed the first and, with our older sons, we have faced the second. Now we face our youngest kids going to college, a moment we have looked forward to and dreaded for almost two decades. A year ago […]

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Talking to your teen about mental health in college can be scary and awkward. Here's how to start the conversation.

Mental Health in College: What Parents Need to Know

Dear Readers, I am just like you—a proud, tired, and often worried parent of two kids teetering on the brink of adulthood. My daughter just graduated from a highly selective liberal arts college. She once told me, “I am majoring in my own sanity.” And over her undergraduate years, she studied through bouts of severe […]

High School Freshman Year: 10 tips for parents to help their teen through the first year of high school.

Dear Mom of High School Freshman

Dear Mom of High School Freshman, It is hard not to feel, in those weeks leading up to the first day of freshman year, that you and your child have finally hit the big leagues. Because you have. High school is, in many ways, a break with everything that has gone before. Suddenly your child, […]

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Parenting Teens

teenager, teen boy, difficult teens

Why Teens Terrorize Us

Despite our deep and abiding love for them, teens continue to terrorize us, creating the type of stress that scientists have now begun to measure. I have a teen in my house who is leaving in a few short weeks. Despite the fact that I know that it is only a matter of days until […]

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Work Life Balance

How to restart your career

10 Expert Tips on Going Back to Work

You used to be so confident, successful in your career, juggling life responsibilities and bringing home a paycheck. But then came a career break, an extended period of time where, for family or other reasons, you left the full-time workforce. Now there is a gap in your resume and a sense of professional unease has […]

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