Thoughts parents have on the first day of school |

Right now my Facebook feed is filled with pictures of smiling (and I’m not going to lie, some frowning) photos of kids standing with signs that declare their first day of school. They are absolutely adorable in their best “first day of school” outfits, filled with nervous anticipation of what is to come for the upcoming school year.

But I always wonder what these pictures would look like if there was a parent standing with an adorable personalized “back to school” sign. I mean, would a...

Posted on August 29, 2016 at 9:17 AM by Amanda Simkin

Tips on how to soothe your crying infant |

Photo credit: Flickr/acheron0

Most expectant parents understand that after their baby is born, she will cry. A lot. But how do you cope with the stress of hearing your baby cry, and how will you know whether your baby's crying is normal? 


Nancy Mork, LCSW, of the Erikson Institue's Fussy Baby Network, offers some great insight on infant crying below. 


How do you know if your child has colic, rather than a normal baby who cries a lot?

All babies cry, but some certainl...

Posted on August 23, 2016 at 1:15 PM by Laura Baginski

The ABCs of applying for CPS preschools |

If you’re thinking about CPS for preschool next fall, the time to look into those programs is…now! There are different options available, with programs housed in select public elementary schools across the city. Most have already begun providing tours and scheduling open houses. It’s always best to call each school you are interested in to get the details on how to apply and/or get on their waitlist; some programs have not yet determined the number of seats that will be open for next fall...

Posted on August 22, 2016 at 10:40 AM by Didi Lewis

The top 7 reasons to go to NPN's school fair |

Whether your child is starting school next fall, or still a baby or the size of an olive in your belly, you will get valuable information about Chicago schools at NPN’s Preschool & Elementary School Fair on Oct. 16 at Grossinger Autoplex in Lincoln Park. Reps from nearly 150 public and private schools will be on hand to tell you about their schools and answer your questions. 

Here are 7 reasons why NPN’s school fair is not to be missed.

1. You'll get lots of face time. This is y...

Posted on August 22, 2016 at 7:47 AM

Finding a cure for pediatric cancer neuroblastoma |

When Patricia Tallungan's 6-year-old son Nick started complaining his back hurt, she didn't think much of it. But after a visit to the pediatrician and an X-ray, her family's life changed forever. Her son was diagnosed with neuroblastoma, a little-known cancer she hadn't even heard of at the time. Four years of grueling treatments later, Nick lost his battle.

But Tallungan's battle had just begun. She turned her grief into the Children's Neuroblastoma Cancer Foundation, which provides ...

Posted on August 18, 2016 at 1:16 PM by Laura Baginski

Back-to-school child care at a steep discount! |

Find your after-school sitter, carpool helper, or part-time or full-time nanny with UrbanSitter, an easy-to-use app and website where you’ll find Chicago’s most trusted babysitters and nannies.

NPN members who join UrbanSitter for free receive a $50* credit AND one month of membership to use toward your first booking anytime before September 30! Simply login to NPN and click HERE to get started!

The most powerful sitter & nanny search
UrbanSitter is smartly connected to your lo...

Posted on August 16, 2016 at 6:15 AM by Ellie Ander

Education in Chicago: What can be done? |

What's the state of education in Chicago, and what can be done to make sure every child gets access to the same opportunities? Those were the questions guiding Tuesday evening's panel discussion, Letters to the Editor Live: Chicago Education in Crisis, presented by the Chicago Sun-Times and Neighborhood Parents Network. 

The panel—comprised of Sun-Times reporters and columnists Lauren FitzPatrick, Dan Mihalopoulos, Mark Brown and Mary Mitchell, as well as NPN's Amy Johnson and Tiffany ...

Posted on August 10, 2016 at 1:10 PM by Laura Baginski

NPN exclusive offer to Fitness Formula Clubs! |

Established in 1984, Fitness Formula Clubs (FFC) owns and operates upscale, mid- and large-size multi-use health, sports, fitness and spa centers in the Chicago area. The company also provides corporate wellness programs, health and nutrition education, the healthy lifestyle CONNECTIONS magazine, signature group exercise programs, and numerous individual and group training initiatives.

Each Chicagoland location is dedicated to supporting the local community and is equipped with state-of-th...

Posted on August 09, 2016 at 6:07 AM by Ellie Ander

Raise your child to be a global citizen |

Photo credit: DFID/Flickr



As parents, we have high hopes for our children. We want them to be kind, curious, generous and caring. We want them to make contributions to society, however small, that make the world a better place. We want them to show empathy toward those who are less fortunate. In short, we want them to be global citizens. 

Global citizens are aware of the world outside their communities, and understand that we are all interconnec...

Posted on August 05, 2016 at 10:59 AM

Parenting feats that should be Olympic sports |

Photo credit: Vincent Angler/Flickr


Olympic fever is alive and well in our house. The excitement of close finishes, the talented and determined athletes, the national pride..what isn’t there to love? And what I find even more inspiring is that many of these athletes are parents, which means that while training for the Olympic Games, they are also participating in the Parenting Games.


Which got me thinking about what types of “sports” there should be in the Parenting Games…...

Posted on August 04, 2016 at 12:35 PM by Amanda Simkin