Author: Sarah Anderson

Joy in the Chaos

My son is asking for a car this Christmas. He’s four. He started asking for one months ago. And I— foolishly—thought it would be an idea that waned with time. Not so much. He gets fixated on things and doesn’t let go. Which can only mean one thing. Christmas morning is sure to be a little disappointing for my boy. He is his mother’s son. I can relate. I have a long history of being a bit of a wreck on Christmas. I love anticipation, hype, excitement. But I hate the letdown. And every Christmas, with big hopes and...

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4 Tips to Surviving Family Holiday Gatherings

This time of year really is my favorite. Starting with football and Thanksgiving dinner, then watching kids as the magic of Christmas begins to invade every bit of space in their world, it’s easy to fall in the love with the wonder of the holiday season. But as adults, we know there is much more to the holiday season than the wonder and the magic we see our children so easily clinging to and emanating. While visions of sugarplums dance in their heads, we have a different sort of vision . . . Of extended family descending on the house in “Christmas...

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How to Make Good Memories Without Grumpy Side Effects

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. We’re on the cusp of all things holiday and fun. The festivals. The fairs. The pumpkin patches. And the promise for more parties and holiday spectaculars just around the corner. It’s the kick off to a magical—if not insane—season, made all the more magical—and insane—with kids. Not more than a few weeks ago, I was reminded of how magical/insane this time of year is. Our family had planned and attended so many “fun” things that particular weekend we turned into tired, cranky, sugar-assaulted people of no use to each other or...

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The Reality of Fear and What to Do Next

A few days ago, I asked my two boys what they were most afraid of. My youngest, without skipping a beat, told me water buffalos and cobras. My oldest, still only seven, told me, imaginary monsters at night, robbers, America being destroyed, and the universe exploding. I didn’t see that coming. So I did what I’ve always done. I told my youngest, lucky us, we don’t live near cobras or water buffalos. So, crisis averted there. And then to my oldest I said, there were no monsters, our house was safe, American would be fine, and the universe appears to...

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Why We Make Our Kids Do Chores

I’ve never been a big fan of January 1st. Too much pressure to set a goal or make a resolution, and then an impossibly long 12 months to keep it. But the start of the school year? I love it. Maybe it’s the smell and look and feel of new school supplies, maybe it’s the enthusiastic outfit choosing, and hair gelling and homework doing, that makes me giddy. Or maybe it’s the hope that if you set some optimistic goals in August and September, being able to keep them until Christmas break seems a lot more doable. My kids...

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