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Parenting Thoughts

Can’t Wait For

Can’t Wait For

By Pam Henderson

Labor Day marks the unofficial end to summer. While the calendar still gives us three more weeks of the season, the heat and humidity of June and July made me wish it away long ago. I’ve been waiting patiently since February for a snowfall. I can’t wait for winter.

I probably used the term “I can’t wait” more often than I realized. “I can’t wait for the weekend,” “I can’t wait to get back to school,” “I can’t wait for…” Then, one day it all changed for me, thanks to Betty.

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Children and Sweet Moments

Children and Sweet Moments

By Pam Henderson

Memories of a trip to the grocery store with my daughters from more than 14 years ago came flooding back to me this week, thanks to a story my husband shared.

I remember how the moment elapsed. After working all day, I picked up the girls from daycare and took them with me to the grocery store. Had I planned the day more thoughtfully, I wouldn’t have been wearing heels. But in those days, while parenting a colicky 2-year old and a high-spirited 5-year old as my husband and I worked full-time jobs, I barely had time to blink and breathe at the same time, let alone prepare myself with a spare pair of sneakers for after work errands.

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Children and Intrigue with Space

Children and Intrigue with Space

By Pam Henderson

We wandered into this week with our eyes – albeit protected eyes – focused to the sky. Monday’s eclipse was a sight to behold. Equally intriguing, I believe, is the fact that scientists could pinpoint exactly when and where the eclipse would take place, as well as the percentage and length of totality. It’s beyond amazing that science has the tools, intellect and technology to uncover so many of the secrets of our solar system.

A few of my colleagues made pinhole projectors using a cereal box. It took me back to first grade, when we experienced a solar eclipse in North America. I envied the 3rd graders who got to make pinhole projectors. Those of us who were too young had to keep our backs to the sun and wait for the darkened skies to come over us.

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Children and Paying for College

Children and Paying for College

By Pam Henderson

Every once in a while, my former career in financial planning intersects my parenting. Perhaps that statement is never more true than when it comes to considering how to pay for college. Every semester when the new college bill arrives, I deliberate with my husband in how to help our daughter make the best financial decisions for college.

In my previous career where I worked to help people achieve their financial goals, I found it much easier to be on the outside looking in. When you’re in the midst of figuring out your own stuff, you’re balancing the wisdom of your mind with the emotions of your heart. Sometimes when you’re stuck in a situation, you don’t see it as clearly as others (and that is why we have armchair quarterbacks and backseat drivers).

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New Law on Child Abuse Reporting

New Law on Child Abuse Reporting

By Pam Henderson

As another school year begins, a whole new set of “eyes” is on children. Oftentimes, teachers spend more time with our children from Monday through Friday than we get to as parents. As skillful observers, they have witness to a side of our children that we don’t get to see. The classroom, playground and lunchroom can bring out interesting conversations and behaviors amongst children when they’re with their peers.

At the same time, a child’s problems from outside the classroom are likely at some point to surface at school. A teacher may notice a straight “A” student regressing to failing grades, frequently arriving late or unprepared for school, wearing dirty clothing or clothing that is not suitable for the weather or struggling to concentrate due to daily fatigue or hunger. Any of these may have a reasonable explanation – maybe the dog really did eat the homework or the hot mac & cheese really did accidentally scald the arm. Most of us entered adulthood still proudly bearing the battle wounds of a well-played, mischievous and adventurous childhood.

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