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Weekly tips and encouragement to help you handle stress, stay fit, and find joy in parenting

Making Wise Choices as Time Flies

As another year comes to an end, it is customary to reflect on how we want to improve our lives in the new year. Life goes better when we live intentionally rather than being pulled by whatever a day happens to bring. Making strategic choices about our health, friendships and work help us to live the best life possible.

Take where you live, for example. Most people end up living within a few miles of where they were born even after extensive travel. It makes you wonder if they chose the best location for them or just drifted back to the comfortable and familiar. There is no place like home but choose the home that reflects your heart and not just the circumstances you were born into.

Likewise, choose the health habits that will...

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Holiday Eating Strategies to Stay Lean and Fit

Fat and jolly may not be the look you are going for this holiday season. Exercise and good choices in what you eat will help you fit into your New Year's Eve clothes.

Even during the holidays, it is possible to get lean and fit. There are holiday eating strategies that will prevent weight gain while not ruining all the fun. While focusing on your diet, also keep daily exercise in your schedule such as one of the Exercising Values 15 minute routines. Regular exercise helps balance the extra eating so common this time of year.

Remember, lean bodies are built with protein. The best way to be sure you are eating enough protein is to include some at every meal and snack. If you are not a vegetarian and you do not have food sensitivities then...

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Two Easy Steps to Lose Weight and Stay Healthy this Holiday Season

What you eat each day influences how you feel, how you look and how you perform. It has far reaching consequences on your health now and in the future. It is important enough that you would be well served to consult a knowledgeable professional such as an integrative medicine physician, a nutritionist or dietician. They can perform tests to help you determine your specific nutritional needs and possibly foods you need to avoid.

You are the one who is in the best position to notice how a food makes you feel. When you share this information with a trained professional, they can help fashion a diet that will optimize your health. Even though I research nutrition all the time, I still benefit from seeing an integrative medicine physician and...

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Weight Loss and Family Fun During Holidays (and Everyday)

We are just about to officially begin the holiday season. If you have diet and exercise goals, you may be starting to make a mental list of what you are going to do to combat the five pounds that the average person puts on during the holidays and sadly never takes off. You'd like to enjoy the holidays without carrying around an extra inch or two of belly fat the rest of the year.

As the days get shorter and in many places colder, parents begin to contemplate a different seasonal problem: children that are restless and bored indoors. Happily, there is one solution that can help solve both problems. It is possible to have healthy, happy children and to stay fit during the holidays. The solution in a word is: consistency.

Let's look at...

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3 Questions to Ask about your Child's Development

We're busy people with lots of responsibilities. Among all those activities that capture our time and attention, parenting is the one job we all want to get right. It deserves our time and attention so let us take a few moments to reflect on the kind of people our children are becoming. Here are three questions to mull over:

1. Does my child show respect for others?

Much of a child's social skills are molded before school age so now is the time to develop the ability to work and play well with family and friends. The best way to do this is by setting a good example yourself. Parents who role model kindness, sharing, politeness, and truthfulness are instilling the social skills that will help their children succeed in life.

Think...

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3 Keys to Parenting Children toward Excellence

Fritz Kreisler was a master violinist who learned that an Englishman owned a Stradivarius violin. He sought out the man and offered to buy it only to be told it was not for sale. Kreisler asked if he might at least touch it and the owner allowed it. Kreisler tucked the instrument under his chin and began to play so beautifully that the owner didn't sell it to him, he gave it to him.

Today is Labor Day in the States. As we honor everyone who labors today, lets purpose to teach our children to strive for excellence in whatever they do. Mediocrity is boring. Every few years the world stops to watch the Olympics as the best of the best contend against each other. Sponsors will pay millions of dollars for a thirty second ad during the...

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9 Keys to Your Child's Success in School and Life

It's back to school time and every parent is hoping for a successful year for their child. If they go away to school they have the adjustment of spending more time with peers and less with family. If they home educate, they are looking for opportunities to continue building friendships while pursuing academic excellence at home. Everyone is interested in social development and academic excellence. Research shows that physical fitness, good relationships with the family and friends, and character development all have a positive impact on school performance.

Some areas that parents can immediately work to improve to help give their child the best chance at personal satisfaction, high self esteem, academic achievement and successful...

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Parenting Freedom with Simple Fun Fitness

I recently went on a road trip with my eighteen year old son and twenty year old daughter. We were biking, hiking and swimming in Colorado. It's amazing how easy it is to travel with kids compared to the days we were escorting six kids around Disney World. Everything was very relaxed and easy. If you only have very young children now, know that your day is coming, too. Independence Day.

July fourth is also just around the corner and it is one of my favorite holidays for the same reason-it's easy and relaxing. No lists, no shopping, no holiday weight gain. It's using the grill, the pool and lots of time with the family.

Get some blueberries, watermelon and fresh squeezed lemonade. Take a break from processed foods of all kinds. In...

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Not So Sweet Formula for High Achieving Children

Naturally, you want everything to be perfect when you experience the birth of your first child. I remember that one restriction I asked my medical team to honor was to not give my baby any sugar water. I remember waking up and seeing the nurse doing exactly that. I came alert quickly and asked her what she was doing. She actually put the bottle behind her back and said "nothing" like a small child caught in the act. I then asked her what was behind her back and she slowly brought it out, told me I was being silly and at my insistance handed me my baby.

It seems like the world has conspired to put too much sugar in my children's mouths ever since. We used to own a bakery-yes, I know.  We tried to limit taking product home...

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Mother's Day Missive on Creating Great Family Memories

Mother's Day is tomorrow but it's focus is often times on yesterday. It brings to mind thousands of vignettes of interactions we all had with our moms. And in that lies the take way lesson for today's moms. The impression we leave with our kids, the life lessons they will recall, are made up of unplanned,unrehearsed moments that revealed who we are, what we stand for, what we will not tolerate,what and who we love, and so much more. This tapestry of daily moments woven over many years is our gift to our children and here's the kicker. They will remember days you forgot a long time ago. Some of them may make you blush and will certainly make you laugh.

I know this because I have six children who like to reminisce, sometimes at my expense,...

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