Help kids with food allergies enjoy the holidays | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Johnny Silvercloud/Flickr

The holidays are upon us, and with the holidays come family gatherings, tidings of good cheer and food—lots and lots of food. Everywhere one turns there is cocoa and cookies and fruit cake—oh, my!

For some, this time of year, and the many delicacies that come with it, is welcomed. But if you have a child with a food allergy it is a total nightmare. 

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t want others to suffer just because my child can’t eat something,...

Posted on December 07, 2016 at 9:48 AM by Cate White

Step up for kids like Mary Cate | NPNparents.org

*SPONSORED BY LURIE CHILDREN'S HOSPITAL*

She may look different on the outside, but five-year-old Mary Cate, this year’s Aon Step Up for Kids patient champion, is just like any other kid on the inside.

Diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder called Apert Syndrome, which affects the shape of the head and face and prevents the skull from growing normally, Mary Cate has undergone several major surgeries at Lurie Children’s with more procedures still to come. It is Family Services prog...

Posted on December 07, 2016 at 9:00 AM

How to keep your New Year's resolution | NPNparents.org

*SPONSORED BY RAM RACING*

As the year comes to a close, many of us are mentally steeling ourselves for New Year’s resolutions of physical fitness. Whether you’re resuming your workouts after a holiday hiatus or just beginning, staying dedicated to your resolution can be difficult—but not at all impossible! Below are some tips for staying motivated during the winter months.

1. Make a plan. To maximize your resolution’s success, it helps to outline a realistic game plan. Making your r...

Posted on December 05, 2016 at 10:03 AM

I play opera for my kids (and so should you) | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Amie Kuo

I was a theater major (turned banker), so naturally I enjoy music and performance, and my husband is a big opera fan. We're also parents to two toddlers, so music is an essential part of our family life. Before kids, my husband and I used to go to a dozen shows each opera season, and now we still go to half dozen shows as a date night, sans kids. (I know some who have parents tried, but personally I don’t think it is wise to take kids under five to the opera.)

...

Posted on December 01, 2016 at 1:55 PM by Charlotte Tsou

5 tips for cooking with little kids | NPNparents.org

We all know that cooking with kids is recommended. Research shows that it encourages kids to have a more adventurous palate and promotes family bonding, among a host of other benefits.

But the truth is, cooking with LITTLE kids can be a real circus act. 

Take, for example, the time when my mini sous chef decided to use the kitchen faucet as a fire hose. Or when and my little pastry queen turned our kitchen floor into a sugary beach. Of course, these things always seem to happen whil...

Posted on November 21, 2016 at 1:12 PM by Laura Hoover

6 reasons to go to Chicago Toy & Game Fair | NPNparents.org

Don’t let the 60-degree weather in Chicago fool you—lights are going up on trees and holiday music is taking over the airwaves. The holidays are almost here! And if you are anything like me, coming up with great gifts for the kids in my life is a struggle. I mean, I don’t want to be stepping on small figurines every time I walk through my living room, nor do I want to spend a ton of money on poorly made toys that fall apart within a week. That’s why my family and I are taking a trip to Ch...

Posted on November 15, 2016 at 2:34 PM by Amanda Simkin

This is how to treat a child with special needs | NPNparents.org

For 20 years I have been a parent of a child with special needs. You can imagine how often I have shopped for, and with, my child. Over the course of those years, I have encountered numerous vendors, proprietors and salespeople. There are retailers to whom I would never return and those who I frequent. There are common characteristics of those vendors, and quality of merchandise is not high on the list.

Foremost, both the sales personnel and the shop are inviting. When I walk into a store ...

Posted on November 14, 2016 at 9:46 AM by Kathryn Lavin

How to apply to a CPS school in 5 easy steps | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: Bruno Girin/Flickr

CPS application season is well under way! The Chicago Public Schools application deadline for the 2017-2018 school year is Friday, December 9, 2016.  Students entering kindergarten through 8th grade may apply for open seats at schools across the city, with a limited number of pre-k options available as well (click here for the basics on CPS preschool). 

In CPS, there are two main types of schools to which you can apply:


Magnet schools and pr...

Posted on November 08, 2016 at 8:49 AM by Didi Lewis

You will find the right school for your child | NPNparents.org

Photo credit: crazybananas/Flickr

 

One of the things I both love and find infuriating about raising kids in the city of Chicago is school choice. I grew up in a small suburb outside of Boston and you simply went to the school that was assigned to your neighborhood—one of the three that were available. A few outliers went to one of the local Catholic schools, and even fewer attended the private boarding school down the road.

 

Raising, and educating, children in the city of Ch...

Posted on November 07, 2016 at 8:30 AM by Cate White

Make Halloween slightly less unhealthy | NPNparents.org

I know that Halloween is a favorite holiday for so many people. And I totally get the appeal—carving pumpkins, dressing up in cool costumes and getting free candy is pretty sweet. As a parent, I still love the holiday, but I’ve learned that I need to "tweak" my approach to the holiday to keep my kids from turning into little monsters.

For starters, the crowds in Chicago can be out of control, especially during the trick-or-treating hours hosted by neighborhood stores. It’s a far cry fr...

Posted on October 20, 2016 at 1:57 PM by Laura Hoover