• Why I Won't Be Following This Easter Egg Hunt Trend

    Photo: PinterestIt’s Easter week, which means there’s been lots of chocolate-bunny-themed posts popping up in my Facebook feed. I love hearing how friends went on Cadbury egg benders and seeing the cute Easter bonnet shots (and the hilariously creepy Easter bunny shots). But one post made me do a double take: Color-coded egg hunts. As in, each kid gets assigned a certain color egg and is only allowed to collect those pre-designated eggs. At first the OCD-er in me was drawn to the pretty picture with all the order. The buckets match the eggs! I almost hit "like" but then I realized how much I dislike the idea. The post I read touted it as a way to “keep it all fair.” For real? This is so not for me. Here’s why:

    For one, this level of organization just adds more work and feels like part of the Pinterest, whatever-you're-doing-now-is-not-good-enough campaign to stress me out. Can’t we just scatter a bunch of eggs in the backyard and let the children loose? You have to tell kids who just sat still(ish)

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  • Photo: Getty ImagesThere are a lot of things strangers say to parents that come off as judgy, meddling or just plain stupid. The worst, of course: When are you due? When you are not, in fact, due … ever. (Been there and not wanting to be there again is the number one reason I’m attempting sit-ups these days.). But another cringe-worthy question has been coming up for me a lot lately and I want to discuss. Here’s what I’m talking about:

    I was on the security line at the airport with my four-month-old baby in the Bjorn and a friendly woman started chatting us up …

    Friendly woman: “Oh, he’s so cute. Look at his eyes! What a big boy. How old is he? He’s soooo smiley. I love his boots!”

    I smiled and nodded and answered all of her questions. We kept chatting. She told me about her grandson and how he isn’t as big as my boy yet and finally, about five minutes in, it happened…

    Friendly woman: “So, what’s his name?”

    Me: “Um, well, actually…she’s a girl and her name is Molly.”

    Then this poor woman back-peddled and

    Read More »from The Stranger Comment That Makes Me Cringe
  • Corbis If you own a trendy fitness-tracking device such as the Fitbit or the new Vivofit, you’re probably diligent about getting your recommended 10,000 steps per day (the equivalent of five miles). But you might not need to move as much as you think.

    According to Catrine Tudor-Locke, director of the Walking Behavior Laboratory at Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, taking 10,000 steps isn't really necessary. “I wouldn't discourage people from taking 10,000 daily steps, but it’s not a magic or even scientifically proven number,” Tudor-Locke tells Yahoo Shine. The number originates from the 1960s, when Japanese pedometers were marketed under the name "manpo-kei" which translates to "10,000-steps meter." And as fitness trackers took off in the United States, companies adapted the goal of 10,000 steps.

    A number that better aligns with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is between 7,000 and 8,000 steps. “The CDC says people

    Read More »from 5 Health Rules You Can Ignore
  • Speed Up Your Family's Morning Routine

    Does it take forever to get your family out the door in the morning? Getting ready for work and school can make you exhausted before you even leave the house. Dr. Natalie Azar joins Ereka for this episode of "Easy Does It" to share helpful ideas for speeding up your family's morning routine.

    1. Get up 15 minutes before your kids. "When the kids are around, they slow you down," Natalie says. Use the short morning quiet time to start getting yourself ready before the kids get out of bed.

    WATCH: Warm Up Your Bathroom for Winter

    2. Motivate with positive reinforcement. Children will respond to small rewards for good behavior. "I usually say to my kids, first one who has dressed, brushed their teeth, and is standing in front of the car will get a treat today," Natalie says. "You take the focus off of the yelling, screaming, and reminding 10 times."

    3. Encourage multitasking. If you let your children watch TV in the morning, make sure they are brushing their teeth, eating breakfast, or getting

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  • kela.fiFinnish mothers are crediting a simple cardboard box with saving their babies' lives and providing them with a hopeful future.

    The boxes, a 75-year-old tradition in Finland, are given to new mothers as they leave the hospital with their newborns, according to a story published Tuesday on the BBC. Dubbed a "maternity package" or a "baby starter kit," a typical box is lined with a mattress on which babies take their first nap during the ride home.  Mothers are also given the option to accept the box or a cash grant set at 140 euros (approximately $180), but most mothers opt for the box. Here's what's included:

    Bedding:  An under sheet, mattress cover, duvet cover, blanket, and sleeping bag or quilt.
    Clothing: A snowsuit, a hat, insulated mittens, booties, socks, mittens, leggings, knitted overalls and facemask, onesies, and a romper suit.
    Bathroom products: A hooded bath towel, a hairbrush, a toothbrush, diaper cream and diapers, nail scissors, a baby thermometer, and washcloths.

    Read More »from Finland's 'Starter Kit' for New Moms Is Brilliant
  • Tired of burning the popcorn? The new Perfect Pop app promises to help you make it perfectly every time. (Handout photo)Ever since microwave popcorn became popular in the early 1980s, fans of the whole-grain snack have faced a familiar problem. If you don't stop the microwave at exactly the right moment, you either end up with too many tooth-shattering unpopped kernels or a bag of scorched popcorn and a smoke-filled kitchen.

    "Our consumer services team found that this is the most frequent difficulty that consumers have," Craig Tokusato, vice president of marketing at Diamond Foods and the person in charge of their Pop Secret popcorn division, told Yahoo! Shine. "It's a highly frequent and annoying problem."

    How frequent is "highly frequent?" According to an informal in-house study by Deutsch LA, about 400 people per week send some sort of angry message via social media about having burned their popcorn.

    "We needed to find an interactive way to fix an age-old problem," Deutsch LA's CEO, Mike Sheldon, told Yahoo! Shine.

    Deutsch LA teamed up with Diamond Foods, the makers of Pop Secret to come up with a

    Read More »from How to Avoid Burning Your Popcorn: The Perfect Pop App
  • There are certain labor-intensive recipe phrases that can make the most diligent cook roll her eyes. "Do I really have to do that?" we wonder. Leave your Do I Really Have To Do That? questions in the comments and they shall be answered, saving us all a lot of needless trouble.

    My mom taught me how to roast a chicken when I moved into my first apartment as the cornerstone of a weekly meal plan. First step: rinse and pat it dry. Cleanliness is next to godliness, right?

    Pull that chicken out from under the faucet. This might come as a shock, but the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), a division of the USDA, advises against washing raw poultry, beef, pork, lamb or veal before cooking. Why? Some bacteria on the chicken can be dislodged with a little water and will splash all over your sink, counters, and nearby dish rack as you rinse. This is called cross-contamination, and it freaks the FSIS out for good reason; it's a great way to get food poisoning.

    Let's transition from kitchen to

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  • Photo: Todor Tsvetkov/Getty ImagesWhen it comes to bouts of teenage rage, there are tantrums—and then there are tantrums. Diagnosable ones.

    Many kids prone to explosive anger, in fact, are labeled bipolar. It’s part of the reason that, in the past decade alone, diagnoses of the disorder in children have soared by a staggering 40 percent, with some estimates putting the prevalence rate as high as 3 percent in adolescents. And that’s particularly noteworthy considering that, before the mid-1990s, almost no one diagnosed bipolar disorder in kids.

    What’s happened between then and now has been the fascinating evolution of a pediatric disorder, driven by major psychiatric studies changing the way symptoms of the condition are seen in kids, and culminating, for now at least, with this month’s controversial release of the DSM-5, the official bible of American mental illness.

    The fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, published by the American Psychiatric Association and used to diagnose patients, is the first

    Read More »from Diagnosing Bipolar Disorder in Kids: Here's the DSM-5's Controversial New Update
  • Author Kim Wong Keltner writes about why she won't be a Tiger Mom to her daughter, Lucy. (Photo: Kim Wong Keltner)In her controversial memoir, "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," Yale law professor Amy Chua defended her draconian parenting methods, explaining how being a controlling "Chinese-style" parent drives Asian-American children to succeed in ways that permissive "Western-style" parenting does not. But a recently released decade-long study of 444 Chinese-American families shows that the effect tiger parents have on their kids is almost exactly the opposite.

    When Chua's book came out in 2011, Su Yeong Kim, an associate professor of human development and family sciences at the University of Texas, had already been studying the effects of tiger parenting on hundreds of Chinese-American families for more than a decade. Her report, "Does Tiger Parenting Exist? Parenting Profiles of Chinese Americans and Adolescent Developmental Outcomes," was recently published in the Asian American Journal of Psychology.

    "Compared with the supportive parenting profile, a tiger parenting profile was associated with

    Read More »from Kids of Tiger Moms Are Worse Off
  • Yes, cinnamon can be dangerous (Photo by ThinkStock)The infamous “Cinnamon Challenge”, a YouTube fad in which teens compete to swallow one tablespoon of cinnamon in under 60 seconds without drinking water, is under fire for its serious health risks, according to the results of a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

    Study author Steven E. Lipshultz, M.D., Director of the Batchelor Children’s Research Institute at the University of Miami, and his team found that the stunt has led to an increase in calls to the American Association of Poison Control Centers. According to the university press release, in the first half of 2012, the center received 178 challenge-related calls—that’s more than triple the 51 calls it received the entire previous year. Of those 178 calls, 122 (69 percent) were classified as intentional misuse or abuse consistent with the “Cinnamon Challenge” and about 30 (17 percent) required medical attention.
    Study authors say cinnamon is composed of cellulose fibers that don’t dissolve or biodegrade and animal Read More »from Doctors Warn the 'Cinnamon Challenge' Is Dangerous


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