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Sunday, February 19, 2017, 7:41 p.m.

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Family
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Resolution reboot

posted: 02/15/2017 1:47 a.m. Discuss

It happens every year.

Creature Feature

posted: 02/15/2017 1:45 a.m. Discuss

I want to take my 6-month-old puppy to a puppy day care. What do I need to know when I'm trying to pick one?

SHARON RANDALL: New baby has hearts in toehold from start

posted: 02/15/2017 1:45 a.m. Discuss

They say you never get a second chance to make a first impression, so I wanted to make the best of it.

Parenting: After the rage, kids are happier smartphone-free

posted: 02/15/2017 1:44 a.m. Discuss

As regular readers of this column already know, I am completely, 100 percent opposed to children, including teenagers still living at home, being in possession of smartphones. No parent has ever been able to give me a logical reason why a minor should enjoy such a privilege, if "enjoy" is even the proper word.

Carefully preserve digital photographs

posted: 02/15/2017 1:43 a.m. Discuss

Do you like to gather around when family is together and look back through the old photo albums documenting childhood days? The corners of the books are frayed and the white pages have turned a shade between yellow and brown, but inside those pages exist the precious records of family life.

MONEY MANNERS

posted: 02/15/2017 1:43 a.m. Discuss

DEAR JEANNE & LEONARD: Last fall, a friend who'd recently been to India learned I'd be going there in March, and gave me the 2,670 Indian rupees she'd returned with, including five 500-rupee notes. In doing so, she said: "Maybe you can use these. I can't." Although she didn't ask for anything in return, I gave her $40, which is what the rupees were worth at the time. However, a few weeks later, in a surprise move, the Indian government "demonetized" 500-rupee notes, meaning the currency I gave her $40 for will be worth about $2.50 when I get to India. I don't know if my friend knows about the demonetization. Should I mention it to her and suggest that we split the loss? Also, if she does know that the 500-rupee notes are now worthless, shouldn't she be offering to return what I paid her?

EX-ETIQUETTE

posted: 02/15/2017 1:42 a.m. Discuss

Q My ex and I were married for 14 years before he told me he was gay. I had no idea and I was severely shaken -- not because he was gay -- but because I knew that meant the end of our life as we knew it. Valentine's Day was our anniversary. We are still quite good friends, albeit bittersweet at times, and I like his partner very much. They do everything they can do to keep me in the loop and co-parent with a vengeance. But, each time Valentine's Day rolls around I feel such a sense of loss, and I feel terrible that my children's parents had to break up. Can you suggest a few tips to deal with this situation? Some tips to help my kids?

Family: Resolutions re-do

posted: 02/14/2017 11:47 a.m. Discuss

Did you and your family stumble out of the New Year’s resolutions gate this year? Well, it’s never too late to reset your resolutions. You and your loved ones shouldn’t wait until 2018 for a do-over.

Reading the stars

posted: 02/08/2017 1:49 a.m. Discuss

By now it should be ingrained: Reading is extremely important to the health and development of children.

Creature Feature

posted: 02/08/2017 1:48 a.m. Discuss

I read your column about cats and hair mats. I brush my dog's hair every couple of days to keep it from matting, so my question isn't about that. I'm curious about my dog's behavior when I brush him. The thing is that he yawns a lot. He also does what I call "fidgeting." He stands most of the time, but during some brushing sessions he'll go up and down -- sit down, stand up, sit down and so on. What do the yawning and fidgeting mean?

SHARON RANDALL: Home is located deep in the soul

posted: 02/08/2017 1:42 a.m. Discuss

We were sitting around a table in a borrowed house (thank you, Lynn and Phil) in Monterey, Calif., eating a take-out dinner (thank you, Tarpy's Roadhouse) and laughing (thank you, Lord).

Parenting: Start attitude therapy with smartphone severing

posted: 02/08/2017 1:41 a.m. Discuss

Q Our 15-year-old daughter has become, over the past year or so, quite a disruptive influence in our normally peaceful home. She was a gem until she entered high school [and then] almost overnight became disrespectful and combatively argumentative. If she disagrees with a decision we make, she will begin screaming at us, calling us names and the like. Despite the fact that her face is in her smartphone almost constantly, her grades at the secular private school she attends are still good to excellent and she's not, to our knowledge, hanging out with a bad peer group. We're at somewhat of a loss to figure this out. Do you ever recommend boarding school in situations of this sort?

MONEY MANNERS

posted: 02/08/2017 1:41 a.m. Discuss

DEAR JEANNE & LEONARD: For a number of years, my friend "Ted" has been giving $500 annually to a small local charity. (I support it, too.) The charity has always acknowledged the donations it receives in its annual report, with larger contributions receiving more attention than smaller ones. And for this organization, Ted's $500 is a very large gift. This year, however, the charity decided to simply list the names of all contributors alphabetically, without grouping them into size-of-gift categories. When Ted saw this, he laughed and said, "Well, I guess I'll give them 50 bucks next year." And he wasn't kidding. Don't you think Ted should be a bigger man and continue to contribute $500, even though now no one else in our community will know the size of his contribution?

EX-ETIQUETTE

posted: 02/08/2017 1:41 a.m. Discuss

Q I've heard you suggest that the ex and the ex's new partner get to know each other when the kids go back and forth, and I would like to offer you caution when giving this advice. My ex and his new wife reached out by asking me to dinner one night. Then we met for coffee a few weeks later. We developed a comfortable albeit somewhat awkward coexistence, and then he dropped the bombshell. He wanted me to watch our child while he was at work or if they wanted to go out for a date night. He just sat there and waited for me to say something when he asked. So, I warn all parents: All that kind interaction may be a mask for a manipulative and selfish ex who just doesn't want to pay for daycare. Some absolutely don't get good ex-etiquette.

Family: Expand a child’s library with books written by celebrities

posted: 02/07/2017 11:08 a.m. Discuss

Reading is extremely important to the health and development of children, but where to turn to when choosing children’s books?

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