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Unsolicited Advice: Your Parents Aren’t Dumb, You’re Just a Nag


Westlake Legal Group man-3929331_640-620x412 Unsolicited Advice: Your Parents Aren’t Dumb, You’re Just a Nag woke spoiled nags Social Justice Warrior progressives parents Front Page Stories Featured Story Culture brats advice

Image by Mabel Amber, still incognito… from Pixabay

Welcome to ‘Unsolicited Advice’, the weekly column in which I give advice no one asked for to people who don’t even know who I am. Last week I aimed my word count at Will & Grace stars Debra Messing and Eric McCormack. This week I head back to one of my personal favorite advice columns over at Slate, Dear Prudie. 

I read Prudie because the advice is always so bad. I was not disappointed this week in my search for a hate-read. An exhausted Woke Warrior wrote to Prudie asking for advice on how to deal with her (I don’t know if it’s really a “her” but I’m thwarting the patriarchy anyway) progressive parents who aren’t progressive enough.

My parents consider themselves liberal and donate to causes that support racial justice and LGBT rights. They are also in their 70s and way behind the times in a lot of ways. Lately, I feel like every interaction with them turns into me correcting their “unenlightened” statements, and I can feel them getting tired of this dynamic. I want to ease up on them and trust that while they may make an off-color statement now and then, their hearts are generally in the right place, and I’m not going to change their entire vocabulary at this late stage. But I also don’t want to let bigotry or racism slide. I’m conflicted: Do I continue to correct them multiple times per interaction, or can I let some things slide? Some examples would be referring to a Chinese friend as “Oriental”; making a joke about not wanting to “look gay”; and saying, “Well, did he resist arrest?” when discussing a black victim of police brutality.

Prudie basically told Exhausted to keep fighting the good fight with her dumb, basically right-wing-nutjob parents. Exhausted, you wrote Prudie and not me but this is ‘Unsolicited Advice’ so here I go.

Your parents have both been alive for more than 70 years. I know you think you’re smarter than them, but trust me sugar…they’re not idiots. Unless you’re saying you were raised by idiots and then I guess by association that would make you an idiot.

But you seem pretty sure about your intelligence, and your rightness. One thing I often hear people like you say about the Christian faith is, “I think there could be more out there, but I hate how Christians are just so damn sure about it”,  as if that were some kind of superior argument…to be unsure about what you believe.

You’ve probably made that argument many times against right-wing positions on morals and values. Perhaps you also should not be so sure about things.

I gave this same advice to the woman who wanted to cancel her #MAGA-loving in-laws. No matter how woke you think you are, in 20-30 years some kid will be looking at you and scoffing at your antiquated notions and thinking they hope they don’t end up as dumb and clueless as you when they get old.

Your parents aren’t stupid, Exhausted. They’re probably just…exhausted! It is not your job to educate every single person around you in “acceptable” expressions. What a horridly dour guest you must be, correcting everyone around you the moment they use the wrong word or expression. Your parents come from a different time. I know old Black people who still call themselves “colored” or “Negro”. They’re not racist, they’re just old.

But old doesn’t mean stupid. I’m consistently saddened by the attitudes of people I see on the Left who gleefully declare to the world that what they know at 30 is ALL THEY’RE EVER GOING TO NEED TO KNOW and that those who have progressed into their twilight years are useless in their opinions or points of view.

Your parents are saints for continuing to let you speak in their presence, for continuing to engage you on cultural issues. You sound like a nag and frankly, they sound too old to be dealing with nags. Perhaps they’ve just resigned themselves to the fact that they’ve raised a spoiled nag and if they want a relationship with you they have to be willing to put up with your constant speech-policing. Maybe they like being treated like they’re 10 years old by their own child. To each their own.

Your parents are progressives and they’re still not progressive enough for you. I get the impression you’re hard to please.

If you were my child I’d have long ago told you I don’t need your help being “woke”; that I raised a family, worked my whole life, helped my community and served those around; that I am educated both personally and formally; that I am a adult who has loved and lived and fought and had experiences you’ll never be privy to as my child; that I have earned my scars and my expressions. I would tell you that I don’t need you to educate me, I need you to shut the hell up and just be a normal person once in a while.

There’s a scenario here where you don’t say anything, where you don’t make yourself responsible for the reeducation of your dumb, old parents. It’s a scenario where you go their house, talk about the interesting news of the day, and when you hear a word that gives you pause, instead of scolding your loving parents as though you were their superior, you simply acknowledge in your own mind that you know what they meant on go about your day having a lovely time together.

In that scenario, you are grateful for your parents and you treat them with the respect they’ve earned. In that scenario you accept that you don’t know everything and your parents are much wiser and much more experienced than you. In that scenario, you have a great time together. You enjoy each other the way parents and grown children should and you soak up every blessed moment you have with them.

In that scenario you resist being a snobby little asshole in favor of just loving the people who love you.

You can write about it in your diary afterward.

*Follow Kira on Twitter @RealKiraDavis

*Follow Kira on Facebook @RealKiraDavis

*Subscribe to Kira’s podcast Just Listen to Yourself on iTunes


The post Unsolicited Advice: Your Parents Aren’t Dumb, You’re Just a Nag appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group man-3929331_640-300x199 Unsolicited Advice: Your Parents Aren’t Dumb, You’re Just a Nag woke spoiled nags Social Justice Warrior progressives parents Front Page Stories Featured Story Culture brats advice   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

Fourth Trimester Mama offers essentials for moms of newborns

Westlake Legal Group postpartum-bundle Fourth Trimester Mama offers essentials for moms of newborns parents newborns new parents health and wellness Health fourth trimester mama Family Features Family
Postpartum bundle (Photo courtesy of Fourth Trimester Mama)

For most first-time moms, those few months of postpartum days and nights are a whirlwind of feeding baby, changing baby, snuggling baby and trying to get baby to sleep—all while trying to recover from the birth experience. And despite what idealized media images might tell you, it’s not all sweetness and light.

“I really had no idea what postpartum was going to be about,” says Stacy Ni, a local Northern Virginia mom and entrepreneur. “I was making 3 a.m. Amazon purchases on a nightly basis … and I thought, ‘Why isn’t there a service where [what you need] is delivered to you so you don’t have to make frantic orders.?’”

It was that relatable experience that inspired Ni to launch Fourth Trimester Mama.

The online company, launched earlier this year, curates essential products that help women ease the physical and emotional transition from pregnancy to new motherhood during those first three months (otherwise known as the “fourth trimester”) at home with baby. For example, mothers can order a vaginal birth recovery or C-section recovery care kit with products like nipple cream, perineal spray and C-section scar balm (products that are very necessary but tend to get overlooked during baby showers focused on cute onesies and swaddling blankets for baby).

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Each box also comes with affirmation cards (with sayings like, “I am getting to know my new baby one day at a time”)—or you can order a pack of 10 cards separately—to provide inspiration and gentle reminders to slow down.

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Breastfeeding bundle (Photo courtesy of Fourth Trimester Mama)

“They’re really simple quotes, but moms seemed to have really gravitated toward them,” says Ni of the affirmation cards. “It’s a word of positivity when you’re dealing with a screaming baby.”

Fourth Trimester also offers a breastfeeding essentials bundle, which includes products like lactation supplements and tea, a lactation massager and silicone breast pump.

“I really want to do my part through Fourth Trimester to elevate postpartum care, hopefully demystify that postpartum time and help [mothers] heal better,” says Ni of her mission for the new company. “The fourth trimester is an extremely important time in a person’s life.”

Aside from the essential care kits, what’s Ni’s, now a mother of two young children, best advice for those fourth trimester months?

“My first advice when I’m talking to brand-new moms is take it slow. Listen to your body. Don’t be afraid to live inside this bubble. Don’t feel like you have to go out and be doing things. Really rest and let your body do the work of healing.” // Fourth Trimester bundles: $99 each; affirmation cards pack of 10: $12

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Parent hacks: Here are 3 timesaving tools for parents in NoVA

September is synonymous with back to school—and a return to scheduling chaos. These
three local companies are devoted to saving you time in the never-ending parent marathon. Read on and reclaim your time!

This post originally appeared in our September 2019 print issueFor more family content sent directly to your inbox, subscribe to our e-newsletter today. 

Westlake Legal Group clothing Parent hacks: Here are 3 timesaving tools for parents in NoVA time savers scheduling preparation Planning parents parenting life saving hacks kids Family Features Family entrepreneur Culture back to school autumn
Design by Mike Ramm

Time Saver: Back-to-School Shopping
Kids grow like weeds—and keeping them in clothes that fit can be a challenge. That was definitely the case for Sarah and Caleb Ballard, who both have busy government day jobs. Says Sarah, “One morning I walked into my daughter’s room and thought ‘Oh, she has nothing in 6-month sizes.’ We can’t be the only ones with this problem.” So, the Great Falls-based parents of two launched Isaac & Isabel (named after their children), a subscription shopping service that solves this common problem. Sign up, and the mom-and-dad duo will send you a brand-new box of seasonal basics every three months from size newborn to 4T. Each box contains five shirts and bottoms, a set of PJs, a seasonal warmer top, five pairs of socks and even five pairs of underwear (infants get bibs and extra onesies). “The goal is to get you through the workweek,” says Sarah. “The clothes are solid colors, basics. The idea is Grandma is going to buy the special things. We don’t want to get into the business. We’re the backup, we’re the filler.” The service also comes with a pay-it-forward component: Each order comes with a prepaid shipping label for you to mail gently worn clothes in your shipment’s box to a designated charity that helps children in need. // $99 per quarter

Westlake Legal Group Untitled-313 Parent hacks: Here are 3 timesaving tools for parents in NoVA time savers scheduling preparation Planning parents parenting life saving hacks kids Family Features Family entrepreneur Culture back to school autumn
Photo courtesy of Kidsmart Carnivals

Time Saver: Birthday Party Planning
Birthdays are a big deal when you’re a kid—and, let’s be honest, a big stress when you’re the parent tasked with planning it. Yvonne Brandon, a mom to an elementary school-aged son, launched Kidsmart Carnivals two years ago with that in mind. The up-and-coming company offers turn-key birthday parties with options like carnival booths, water play toys for warmer weather and oversized lawn games, including Connect Four, Jenga and Kerplunk. The former Fairfax County teacher used to volunteer to coordinate fairs and fundraisers at her son’s school. But, when bounce houses were prohibited due to safety concerns, she had to come up with an alternative. “I thought, ‘Oh my gosh, that’s our wow factor. What are we going to do?’” She rented some carnival games and “they showed up dirty and broken. It was so unacceptable,” she recalls. “I was so angry and I thought ‘I can do better than this. I have things nicer than this.’” And Kidsmart Carnivals was born. Brandon’s rentals include handcrafted and custom-made carnival booths and games. “I know as a parent, it’s so hard,” she says of planning a successful birthday party. “There aren’t enough venues. It’s very expensive. I can’t offer a venue, but I wanted to offer something that could be really cool—your own fun fair.” Kidsmart offers party packages that range from $400 for a full carnival to stand-alone lawn games (the trio of games rents for about $130). And, in a nod to her school-carnival roots, the company also offers rentals to schools and churches (“If you’re the volunteer for those events, it’s an unbelievable amount of work,” she says.). Brandon is booking parties about two months in advance and hopes to expand her offerings this fall. “Basically,” she says. “I wanted to be the rental company I wished I could find.” // prices vary

Westlake Legal Group Untitled-59 Parent hacks: Here are 3 timesaving tools for parents in NoVA time savers scheduling preparation Planning parents parenting life saving hacks kids Family Features Family entrepreneur Culture back to school autumn
Photo courtesy of Gallery Foods

Time Saver: Family Meal Time
That elusive end-of-day family dinner can feel like an impossible task (The menu planning! The prep! The cooking!), but a DC-based company is making weeknights much easier with kid-friendly, ready-to-eat meals delivered to your door. The chefs at Galley Foods cook up healthy meals in a commercial kitchen in DC’s NoMA neighborhood every morning and deliver that night—all you have to do is heat and eat. “There’s no chopping, no shopping, no prep, no cooking, no cleaning,” says the company’s marketing director, Alexandra Lawrence. “That, in and of itself every night, is probably an hour worth of time saved that you can get back to be with your family.” Founded by two former LivingSocial employees, entrepreneurs Alan Clifford and Ian Costello got the idea when they were working long hours and in need of healthy meal options. Galley doesn’t only cater to families, but they do offer options including kids meals (think sloppy Joes and chicken quesadillas) and family meals that serve four. Sweetgreen, the company with DC roots that turned eating salad cool, acquired the company earlier this year—so expect to see healthy, locally sourced ingredients remain center stage. Bonus: Galley offers “Give Back Weeks” that allow customers to turn meal delivery into a fundraiser. Sign your school up and 20% of related orders are donated back to the school. // Kids meals, $7-$9, family meals from $32; same-day delivery available in parts of NoVA, 24-hour notice required in others

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Unsolicited Advice: Don’t Peak In High School

Westlake Legal Group school-417612_640-620x463 Unsolicited Advice: Don’t Peak In High School school parents overinvolved parents Nostalgia Front Page Stories Featured Story Culture best days advice

Image by elizabethaferry from Pixabay

Welcome to ‘Unsolicited Advice’ – the weekly column in which I offer advice to people who never asked for it and don’t know who I am.

Last week I advised a Florida mom to stop coddling her idiot son after he made death threats online. This week our adventure in advice brings us face to face with an interesting survey.

The New York Post covered a study in which 80% of the parents surveyed said they think of their school days as the best time in their lives. I realize that this is a bit of a departure from my usual structure, but this study has prompted me to forgo giving advice to just one person and instead address one large group….PARENTS.

I must admit that the percentage of parents who believe school was the best time of their lives stunned me. My first thought was –

“How tragic is it that so many people feel they peaked in high school?”

My second thought was –

“No wonder there are so many shitty parents out there”

It all makes sense now, why so many parents around me seem to have trouble controlling and guiding their children. A larger portion of you than I ever would have imagined probably wish you were your children. The “cool mom/dad” is a very real phenomenon. I know because I live in “cool-mom” central in southern California. I once thought it was just about parents wanting to be liked by their kids, but now I believe it is more about parents wanting to be their children.

You see those children as peers. You see those children going to school every day where you imagine them living their best lives, just like you did when you were that age. You can call it living vicariously or just being your kid’s best friend, but I call it wishful thinking.

First, your kid is keeping all kinds of things from you no matter how close you think you are. You are not best friends…not yet. That is an adult relationship and no matter how hard you try you cannot be peers with a child. Second, the reason you are pushing your child so hard to achieve those perfect grades or that perfect look or that perfect extracurricular activity  is because you are projecting your own childhood fantasies onto your child. Their achievements don’t just make you look like perfect parents in your minds, but they also satisfy your own unfulfilled fantasies of having the perfect school experience.

This is becoming so clear now. I see so many parents making so many immature, fearful, half-ass decisions for their kids and now I know why…you just never grew up yourself.

If you think you peaked in high school, that tells me your life was too good. You didn’t have enough challenges. You didn’t struggle enough. You didn’t have enough boundaries, because boundaries as kids are what make us appreciate the freedom of adult life so much.

What a sad, sad thing to believe your best days were behind you the second you walked off campus. That means your “best life” ended around 18-21 (depending on post-secondary choices, of course). But the average American lives about 80 years. That’s a hell of a long time to be feeling that you blew your best years during the tiny portion that is your school life.

So here’s my advice to you. Spare your children the burden of being your personal therapy project. If you are a parent who thinks their best days are behind you, find some new joy in your life. Don’t tell me, “Oh, well my kids are the center of my world and I have time for nothing else” because if that’s true then you have a big problem! Your kids were born into your life, not the other way around. You can love them wholly and unconditionally without making them the center of the universe. They don’t belong there. It’s unhealthy and it destroys the family hierarchy which ultimately destroys healthy egos in children.

Love your kids and be awesome parents. And also find a hobby. Find a book club. Join a cycling club, a political discussion group. Start a blog. Go back and get that degree you always wanted. Find that new job Volunteer at that place you’ve always admired. Transform your body into something you love. Rekindle that passion with your spouse that may have been lost to the day to day grind. Make a plan, then execute it.

My point is, no matter what your life was like as a child your best years are still very much ahead of you, but only if you choose to see it that way. You live in the greatest, wealthiest, most prosperous country on earth. Your worst days are still a mere fantasy for 98% of the rest of the world. The truth is that life almost everywhere else outside of the West is a daily struggle. You are blessed. Act like it.

Stop pining. Start living. Grab everything in front of you. I’m betting your kids see you express a lot of regret (which can sometimes read as regret for their presence). Give up regret and model hope. Show your children that when you look forward with gratefulness and curiosity and when you’re willing to take risks, your best days will always be ahead of you.

School is out. Deal with it.

The post Unsolicited Advice: Don’t Peak In High School appeared first on RedState.

Westlake Legal Group school-417612_640-300x224 Unsolicited Advice: Don’t Peak In High School school parents overinvolved parents Nostalgia Front Page Stories Featured Story Culture best days advice   Real Estate, and Personal Injury Lawyers. Contact us at: https://westlakelegal.com 

What can (and can’t) you eat during pregnancy?

Westlake Legal Group Pregnant-Woman-Eating-Feature What can (and can’t) you eat during pregnancy? pregnancy parents Nutrition Features nutrition Motherhood health and wellness Health Family diet
© motortion / stock.adobe.com

This story is part of our continuing coverage on family health.

Creating a balanced diet that allows you to enjoy food but also gets you an adequate amount of nutrients is challenging enough, but how does it change when you add a growing baby to the mix?

With the rise of internet-based information on every type of food and diet, it can be difficult to navigate exactly what you should and shouldn’t be eating when you’re expecting, and it’s best to turn to a professional if you believe you need guidance.

That’s why we spoke with Jennifer Haas, MS, RD, CPT, registered dietitian and owner of The Healthy Haas, as well as registered dietitian and certified health coach Joanna Pustilnik, MS, RD, CDE, CRPT, of Mind Body Health. They shared their thoughts on everything from sushi and caffeine to “eating for two,” habits. Highlights from our conversations are below.

What do expectant mothers (or future expectant mothers) need to know about how their current diets might change while pregnant?
The biggest dietary change would be the avoidance of sushi and raw seafood, and undercooked meats in general, as well as deli meat items. [Future or expectant mothers] should also take care to avoid certain kinds of fish because they contain high levels of mercury, which can potentially harm a growing baby. These include tuna, swordfish, king mackerel and tilefish. I also advise to cut out artificial sweeteners and additives found in many packaged food products. Also, it is necessary to cut out all alcohol. It is important to eat well-balanced meals at regular times and be able to pronounce the ingredients in your foods to ensure a whole food (not chemical-based) meal plan.

JP: A great way to increase the likelihood of a healthy pregnancy is to start with a couple small, easy changes before conception. Starting prenatal vitamins three months before trying to get pregnant helps ensure maternal micronutrient stores are optimized for both mom and baby. If mom is a latte lover, a reduction in excessive caffeine intake will need to happen right away, because very high levels of paraxanthine, a caffeine metabolite, have been linked with early miscarriage. Moderate amounts of caffeine (300 mg a day or less, or approximately two cups) seem to be tolerated well. If mom is on a diet, this is a good time to stop. Restricting calories or food groups and weight loss behaviors during pregnancy can increase risks to both baby and mom. If mom has a history of disordered eating, is following a dietary pattern that restricts food groups such as veganism, or has a medical condition with a nutritional impact, it would be helpful to consult with a dietitian.

Should expectant mothers be more concerned with the amount of food they’re getting per day, or the amount of nutrients?
JH: Pregnancy isn’t as much as an “eating for two” mentality as it is eating a balance of carbs, proteins and healthy fats in small amounts every three to four hours to avoid blood sugar spikes and dips. It is imperative to avoid skipping meals or grabbing something from the vending machine. Instead, focus on eating fresh, whole foods. In terms of nutrients, the key micronutrients a pregnant woman should ensure that she is getting are calcium, iron, folate and vitamin D, as well as the macronutrient protein. Expectant mothers should be eating an extra 300 calories of quality foods (for a single birth) in order to gain an appropriate amount of weight to sustain healthy fetal development. And by eating every three hours, mom-to-be can avoid the feeling of being overly hungry. And specific calorie amounts can also vary depending on the mother’s pre-pregnancy weight, activity level and whether she is carrying one baby or more.

JP: A full-term pregnancy requires at least 80,000 calories. Moms-to-be need to eat a lot! In the first trimester, calorie needs are relatively similar to prenatal needs (2,200 to 2,500 calories per day), and in the second trimester they bump up a bit by 340 calories daily. The third trimester requires an additional 450 to 500 calories above prenatal needs. Adequacy of caloric intake is extremely important as restriction can lead to prematurity, low infant birth weight, developmental delay, loss of maternal muscle mass and bone density, as well as miscarriage. Attention to macronutrient intake is also important (proteins, carbohydrates, fats). Micronutrient needs, such as vitamins and minerals, are higher in pregnancy. Vitamins and minerals of specific concern for mom include folic acid, calcium, vitamin D, vitamin C, magnesium, zinc, vitamin A and iron. 

What foods should women have when they’re feeling nauseous or bloated (and are there specific ones that help)?
JH: Fiber and fluids, along with mobility, can help the normal bowel movements and moving foods through the digestive tract in a manner to avoid bloating and constipation symptoms. It can also be helpful to avoid carbonated beverages and gum, which introduce air into the gut and enhance the feeling of fullness/bloating. Avoid fatty, fried foods and caffeine, as it will help minimize nausea and staying well-hydrated with clear liquids. Eating five to six small meals daily and taking a prenatal multivitamin (which has vitamin B6 and magnesium) will help quell nausea symptoms.

JP: For nausea, extra B-complex vitamins and supplemental vitamin C may be helpful. Limiting sources of high-fat foods, such as fried foods, may also assist in decreasing symptoms. Small, frequent meals can be beneficial as hormones associated with pregnancy increase nausea even more on an empty stomach. Lying down after eating may also exacerbate symptoms. Dry foods such as crackers or bread, or high protein snacks, such as cheese or lean meats, may help some moms feel better. Overall, it is a good idea to eat whatever you can tolerate as elevated progesterone and estrogen during pregnancy can cause intense food aversions which may make nausea worse if mom forces herself to eat unappealing foods. Bloating may be caused by constipation or fluid retention. Aim for at least 2 to 3 quarts of water and fiber intake greater than 28 grams per day if constipation is a concern. Fluid retention can improve with increased physical activity or a decrease in any excessive sodium intake. Other gastrointestinal concerns may be due to food imbalances or intolerances, elevated hormone levels or a compressed digestive system due to a growing uterus, and concerns should be addressed on an individualized basis, based on unique nutritional concerns. Overall, a diet rich in whole, plant-based foods can promote good digestion and decrease bloating. 

And what about pregnancy cravings? What do you do when you truly crave something?
JH: Cravings are real—pregnant or not. Usually there is a micronutrient (think vitamins and minerals) or macronutrient (think protein, fat or carbohydrate) you are deficient in, which is causing the craving. Pregnancy cravings can be unusual but as long as the should-be-avoided foods are not eaten as part of your indulgence, it is important to listen to your body and try to give it what it tells you it needs. A good example is if you’re craving sweets, you may not be getting enough healthy carbohydrates from fruits and whole grains, so try having these foods before going straight for an ice cream sundae. If you have a piece of fruit (always have a protein source with it such as cottage cheese, peanut butter, almonds, etc. to avoid a blood-sugar spike) and are still craving the ice cream one hour after you’ve eaten the fruit and snack, get yourself a small portion of ice cream and enjoy every bite. It also helps to have your kitchen stocked with healthy options and not junk food. If all you have are chips and candy, that’s all you will eat. If you have baby carrots and hummus, you have a healthy snack waiting for when hunger strikes.

JP: “Pregnancy cravings” are very real. We can thank changing levels of hormones, increased sense of smell and exaggerated emotions and fatigue for the unique power and desire of mom’s cravings. Also, increased calorie, macro and micronutrient needs that aren’t being met can manifest themselves as cravings for high-calorie foods. Our bodies tell us to reach for hyper-palatable and high-calorie foods when we are in a state of deprivation. To help control cravings, the first thing mom can do is look at current intake to ensure she is eating enough, often enough and in a balanced way. Cravings may also be telling her that she is over-tired, stressed, frazzled or otherwise in need of something that food can’t provide. When we are fatigued or stressed, for example, we are more likely to reach for a high-sugar food for a surge of quick energy and dopamine. Making sure mom’s basic needs are being met goes a long way to controlling cravings. But also, mom should remember pregnancy is also a time to nurture herself, her growing body and her baby. Allowing ourselves to eat what it is we desire is part of self-compassion and self-care.

Are there any myths you would like to address about dietary limitations, needs, etc. during pregnancy?
JP: I’ve noticed some recent information circulating regarding moms-to-be and sushi, alcohol and dieting. For example, a client informed me that her midwife advised her to “eat a high protein, low carbohydrate diet for collagen production to reduce the risk of tearing during labor.” There is no evidence for this, and it would be imbalanced and unnecessarily restrictive. Sushi containing raw fish always carries risk of infection. Mom needs to weigh the risk-reward benefit of consuming during gestation, because any maternal infection impacts fetal growth. And the biggest myth I’ve heard floating around is that alcohol is now OK in moderation. Clients have noted that even some physicians are now saying a glass of wine a week is OK when pregnant. The research for this assertion just isn’t there. We just don’t know of any safe level that won’t cause some amount of harm to a growing fetus.

Is there anything else expectant mothers should know about eating while pregnant?
Being healthy encompasses diet, exercise, sleep and stress reduction. It is important to maintain a regular routine of buying nutritious, whole foods and prepping meals for the week, as well as having a plan for eating out and special occasions. You are not trying to lose weight while you’re pregnant, but you should be choosing a balance of complex carbohydrates, lean proteins and heart-healthy fats at each mealtime. Staying hydrated with water and caffeine-free teas, as well as finding activities you enjoy to keeping you moving on a daily basis and ensuring you get a good night’s rest are all vital in a healthy pregnancy. These tips will carry you into postpartum habits that you can pass on to your new family member(s)!

JP: Pregnancy is a beautiful growth period in a woman’s life. It isn’t a time to scrutinize changes in our body or needlessly restrict intake. It is unquestionably beneficial, however, to monitor weight and avoid excessive gain ( greater than 40 pounds). By exercising most days of the week in a not-too-strenuous and enjoyable activity, providing enough variety of fresh, diverse foods, allowing adequate rest and practicing stress reduction, mom will have a vibrant and enjoyable experience and a healthy and robust baby.

Want to learn more healthy tips from NoVA professionals? Subscribe to our Health newsletter.

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Incredible: Man Saves His Children From a Carjacker, But the Shocking Ending is Harrowing

Westlake Legal Group justice-2755765_1280-620x436 Incredible: Man Saves His Children From a Carjacker, But the Shocking Ending is Harrowing Violence Uncategorized theft scott small philadelphia police department philadelphia Pennsylvania parents Front Page Stories Featured Story Culture crime children Allow Media Exception



Wow. This is an incredible story.

According to cops (and WPVI), here’s what happened…

A 25-year-old man was working at a pizza delivery joint in Philadelphia Thursday when his same-aged girlfriend — and mother of his two kids — came in around 9 p.m.

She’d left her vehicle running with her three youngsters — a 7-month-old, an 18-month-old, and a 5-year-old (from a prior relationship) inside.

While the two spoke in the restaurant, a man carjacked the full-of-kids Hyundai.

The pair chased after the car, which got stuck in nearby traffic.

As per Scott Small, of the Philadelphia Police Department:

“They were able to pull this car thief out of the vehicle.”

The 54-year-old assailant subsequently took off on foot, but the boyfriend caught him and a fight ensued.

Back to Scott:

“Then other males from the neighbourhood intervened and began punching and kicking the male who took the vehicle.”

They beat the guy severely.

He was taken to a hospital with extreme damage to the head and face. At 10:05, he was pronounced dead.

The three children were unharmed and spent the night with relatives.

The tykes’ mom and dad were said to be cooperating with detectives.

It’s yet to be determined whether charges will be brought against the father.

What an intense and insane and terrible thing. It no doubt conjures strong convictions.

Thank God the children were unharmed and the crime was stopped. And kudos to a dad for doing whatever it took.

But as for the ending, what do you think? What feelings do you take away? Are you struck by thoughts of justice or of reckless, animalistic violence?

I look forward to hearing from you in the Comments section.



See 3 more pieces from me:

Florida Man Saves His Younger Son By Shooting His Older Son To Death

Snide Illinois Senator Tells Her Concerned Gun-Owning Constituent: Maybe I’ll Just Confiscate Your Guns

Mattel Eyes A Barbie Gay Wedding Playset

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Thinking about hiring a nanny? Here’s what you can expect

Westlake Legal Group Untitled-1 Thinking about hiring a nanny? Here’s what you can expect White House Nannies parents nanny nannies Metropolitan Nannies HomeWork Solutions Family Features Family Child Care
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Living in the DMV area, parents can expect to pay high sums of money for proper care of their children. But exactly how high is it, really? And what’s the actual reasonable cost?

The Washington, DC metro area is one of the most expensive for child care in the country, costing upward of $23,000 a year for a single child, according to nonprofit Child Care Aware of America. In fact, according to the Economic Policy Institute, the District is ranked first, ahead of all 50 states, for the most expensive infant care in the nation, exceeding the annual cost of tuition to a four-year public university. 

While child care can range from day care centers to babysitters, hiring a nanny is highly common in the NoVA area. But as times change and prices increase, it becomes harder to navigate the process. 

Most nannies in NoVA work 40 to 50 hours a week, with salaries typically averaging from $20 to $25 an hour, according to both Metropolitan Nannies and White House Nannies, two child care agencies who serve the Northern Virginia region. 

Both agencies work with local families and nannies to gauge the market and eventually find the best match for children in the area through background screenings, tests and interviews.

“There’s been a big change in the market, partly because of technology,” says owner of White House Nannies, Barbara Kline. “Parents want their nannies up to date and they want to know that their nanny can share information with them. It’s not so much leaving a long list of to-dos like it used to be. The good nannies go in and know what they need to be doing.”

According to Kline, the best nannies will stand out by doing things like making homemade food for the baby, preparing meals for the weekend and engaging with the children on a regular basis. 

Here in NoVA, the better the nanny, the higher the pay; however, the agencies don’t choose the cost of services. Rather, families negotiate with the nanny to see what will work best for both parties. When deciding the proper amount, there are a number of factors involved. 

“We ask nannies why they think they deserve that amount, which could be based on education, experience and, most often, its based on demand and location,” says Jackie Wood, owner of Herndon-based company Metropolitan Nannies. “Nannies that work in Washington, DC would cost a lot more than those in Arlington, even though they’re neighboring cities.” 

While babysitting typically doesn’t require a tax reduction in salary, it is state and federal law that nannies be taxed by both the federal unemployment tax and the FICA tax, according to Jay Shulze, owner of HomeWork Solutions in Sterling. Shulze and his staff specialize in providing household employers with nanny tax compliance. 

“We tell people, in general, they should plan on paying somewhere between 10-15% in taxes,” Shulze explains. “We find that families tend to think in terms of cost per year without factoring in taxes. They may plan on spending $40,000 a year on care for two kids, with an hourly rate of $20 an hour, and then they are surprised when they end up spending $43,000. But they didn’t include gross wages.”

On an annual basis, nannies can make anywhere from $30,000 to well over $50,000, even after a tax reduction, according to Shulze. For a better understanding of nanny tax, HomeWork Solutions has a Virginia tip sheet with useful information.

As the market continues to grow and become more competitive, the industry as a whole remains complicated, in that many nannies are being met with a reduction in salary, according to Kline. 

“This is the one field you could be working in for 10 years or more and not make more money as you move on to the next family,” Kline explains. “Many nannies are in the position of having to make less money than they were making when they turn to a new family.” 

Despite the challenges, the child care industry continues to boom in Northern Virginia.

“Every year the market goes up,” Wood says. “So long as there’s high demand and low availability, nannies will hike up their prices as much as possible.”

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Should college students really be worried about the freshman 15?

Westlake Legal Group 15 Should college students really be worried about the freshman 15? parents parenting Nutrition Features healthy food Health & Nutrition freshman Education college students college
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College eating habits are different.

Some students fly through the cafeteria seconds before class while others hang out in the on-campus coffee shop for hours. There’s food within reach (or a short walking distance) at almost any point in the day. And did we mention late night snacking?

Despite whether or not these behaviors are healthy for any given student, the widespread use of the phrase freshman 15 might not be as accurate as people think. According to a 2008 study titled The Freshman 15: Is it Real?, published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information of the US National Library of Medicine, researchers found an average weight gain of 2.7 pounds in 125 participants, with men more likely to gain weight than women, and freshman students being five times more likely to gain weight than the general population.

Lawrence Cheskin, M.D., professor and chair of nutrition at George Mason University College of Health and Human Services, has studied student eating habits for years, with an emphasis on weight management and community-based research, and has found that there is much more to know about the freshman 15.

We spoke with him about what students should know about their first year, how to be more aware of eating habits and where students can seek help if needed. Highlights from our conversations are below.

What should everyone know about the reality of the freshman 15?
The first thing students should know is that it is not destiny. There’s actually been studies that show a big range of weight gain or that some students don’t gain weight at all. So, it really is within your control. But the factors that tend to push it toward weight gain are that you’re being moved a bit out of your comfort zone, and people should realize, the food is going to change, your friends are going to change, what you do from day-to-day is going to change. We certainly want it to be as positive as possible, but it can also mean more junk food, more eating out, even the presence of alcohol. And you know, you’re becoming an adult and you’re going to make your own decisions, but it’s much better to make them with your eyes open rather than if it just happens because some of the people around you are behaving not so well in their diets or behaviors.

What are some eating habits students should be aware of, whether good or bad?
Well, on one hand, students should know that they shouldn’t really be gaining weight when they enter the college cafeteria (specifically at George Mason University), because the standard fare is nutritionally balanced and has reasonably good stuff to choose from. In fact, it’s somewhat higher in fiber than the average American diet, too. But on the other hand, if you’re sitting through three versions of your friends eating lunch, and you just keep sitting there as people come and leave your table, you can wind up passively over-consuming calories. Especially since, sometimes, just having food in front of us and available, even if it is reasonably healthy foods that are good choices, just the variety and the time you spend around food may make you consume more calories. Students need to be mindful or conscious in terms of their eating. Plus, eating slower is always a good option. If you’ve got to hurry because you have 10 minutes before you need to be in class, you’re most likely going to eat too many calories and not be aware than you’ve had or haven’t had enough to eat.

What about exercise? Does it help in terms of eating habits and fighting weight gain?
Forgive me, I am going to sound like I’m anti-exercise. I’m not at all, and students should get exercise often. But if you get into the habit of thinking, “It’s OK, I can eat without thinking about it and then just go to the gym and make up for it,” it’s not going to work very well. You’re not tying the two things directly together. You will most likely overeat calories by 500 because by working hard physically, it makes you hungrier and your body wants to replace those calories. And then when you eat those extra calories, you need some serious gym work to then burn those off too. It’s also partly the psychology of it. You have to be focused on the future. It’s not just about the pleasure of the moment.

There are also food delivery robots at George Mason. How do you think they have affected student eating habits across campuses that have them?
What a perfect example of how to choose wisely. Yes, you can have unhealthy food delivered to your door, but this service and the delivered food should be used mindfully. It really is about how much you have of it, how often you have it and how you balance it with other things.

Do you think parents should talk to their kids about eating habits when they go to college?
That kind of depends on you as a parent, knowing your kids and what they will respond to. It’s always better if they bring it up rather than if you push it on them. You have to know what your situation is and the best way to manage it in terms of parent-to-child communication. But, parents do play an active role by being good role models. For example, you can’t tell your child not to smoke cigarettes when you’re puffing on one yourself. That doesn’t go over well, and it’s the same thing with food. As a parent, you’re modeling it.

Is there anything else people should know about nutrition in college?
It is all within your control. No one is force-feeding you “bad” foods. No one is saying “You must eat this,” and a little bit of thought and planning can go an awfully long way. You can also avoid the situations that you know are triggers for you. You want to be social, but you can also get involved with your friends when they’re doing something healthier, like exercising for example. And if you think you might have problems controlling your eating on either end of the spectrum, whether it’s too much or too little, then student health services is a great place to turn. That’s one of the most important things to know.

For more information on Lawrence Cheskin and the research at George Mason University, visit gmu.edu. A new study on student eating habits called Health Comes First by the Mason Cohort (which offers gift card incentives to students who participate), will start in the fall 2019 semester.

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No, Women are Not Happier Being Unmarried Despite What a Misinformed Study Shows

Westlake Legal Group traditional-marriage-620x413 No, Women are Not Happier Being Unmarried Despite What a Misinformed Study Shows study single parents misinformation Media marriage Happiness Front Page Stories divorce Culture children Allow Media Exception

Right now the mainstream media is circulating a study that showed women are happier being single or divorced than they are being married, however, some experts are saying that the study has been completely misunderstood, and the current conclusion is literally fake news.

It all started when a professor of behavioral science at the London School of Economics, Paul Dolan, was giving a presentation on his book “Happily Ever After.” Dolan was discussing his findings on data from an American Time Use Survey from which he gathered his findings.

Within the survey asked whether there was a spouse present or absent. According to the findings, women said there wasn’t one around, and answered subsequent questions about how happy they were. Dolan took the data he saw and came to a conclusion.

“We do have some good longitudinal data following the same people over time, but I am going to do a massive disservice to that science and just say: if you’re a man, you should probably get married; if you’re a woman, don’t bother,” said Dolan.

The Guardian was in the room during Dolan’s presentation and off it went, spurring on a whole host of articles from various media sites like the New York Post and The Independent, proclaiming that women and marriage just don’t mix. It circulated like wildfire.

However, as some looked into the data itself, they realized that Dolan simply misunderstood the findings because he misunderstood the question.

UVA Professor W. Bradford Wilcox quickly pointed out where Dolan went wrong.

“…Dolan appears to have misread ATUS survey questions regarding whether or not spouse was in the household to refer to whether or not the spouse was present for the interview–and thereby drew incorrect conclusions about marrieds’ happiness, especially wives’ happiness,” tweeted Bradford.

To back up the fact that Dolan reached the wrong conclusion, he posted the findings from a study by the General Social Survey by the Institute for Family Studies, which showed married people being far more happy than divorced or single people by leaps and bounds.

Adjunct professor and time use researcher Gray Kimborough also called out the spread of misinformation based on Dolan’s misinterpretation of the information, by noting that the numbers Dolan cites weren’t even part of the ATUS interview, but were asked of couples by a CPS interview some months prior. A closer look at the question shows that the survey was asking if a spouse was present in the room during the time of the asking.

“These are the values that the marital status variable takes,” tweeted Kimborough. “When I calculate mean “happiness” values over these, they roughly line up with the book figure. So it isn’t measuring a spouse’s presence for the interview, or even for any activities–just presence *in the household*.”

The General Social Survey by the Institute for Family Studies does provide more of a look into the happiness levels of those who are married vs. those who are divorced or never married. The study was conducted over a period of eight years from 2010 to 2018, giving us a near decade of information to work with.

“The story is straightforward: married respondents are much happier. And consistent with prior research, parents are a little less happy than non-parents, provided they are unmarried. In addition, the results don’t look that different when limited to female survey respondents,” said the IFS in their study.

The IFS even found that unhappiness is much higher in divorced or single people, specifically those who have children.

So the truth is that marriage does make people happier. Children do reduce the happiness factor, but only slightly, and married parents are still far and away happier than those who are divorced or single, especially when children are involved in their lives.

The media got it wrong again, and now we’re left with the question of why the media was so ecstatic to report the false narrative that marriage makes women miserable.



The post No, Women are Not Happier Being Unmarried Despite What a Misinformed Study Shows appeared first on RedState.

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Parents sue Oregon school district over attempts to transgender 8-year-old

Westlake Legal Group who-are-you Parents sue Oregon school district over attempts to transgender 8-year-old transgender The Blog public schools parents Oregon lawsuit indoctrination

When does in loco parentis cross over into just plain loco? A story from Oregon earlier this week demonstrates at least one instance where the line got crossed. A lawsuit alleges that a teacher took an 8-year-old aside to repeatedly question his gender identity, and then began giving him instruction on transitioning to female.

Now the parents are struggling to work and their 9-year-old son is still confused (via Instapundit):

Parents in Woodburn said their 8-year-old son was held back from recess multiple times for one-on-one conversations about his gender identity – and they had no idea.

The mother and father in Woodburn are now suing a school district for nearly a million dollars after they say a second-grade teacher singled out their son by asking him if he was transgender. The parents say the teacher had inappropriate conversations with the child at school without their permission. …

The parents say this all started when their son started using the staff restroom because of a stomach problem. They say their son was uncomfortable using the boy’s bathroom because of his medical condition. However, they believe the teacher assumed their son was uncomfortable because he was transgender.

“Still today, a year later, if he plays with my niece, he’s a girl in that moment… if he plays with my nephew, he’s a boy,” said the mother.

The mother says her son was left confused and hurt after being singled out. Now, a year later, the 9-year-old is taking anxiety medication and going to therapy, according to his parents. The family says the boy’s confusion and emotional distress has also affected the entire family. The father says he’s suffering from panic attacks and the mother says she’s now on medical leave, suffering from anxiety and depression, and staying home from work.

There’s video at the link, but it’s not embeddable here. Bear in mind that this wasn’t a teenager, which might be bad enough, but an eight year old with a stomach problem. Even granting the best of possible intentions, why wouldn’t the first step in dealing with suspicions of gender dysphoria be to contact the child’s parents? It’s not as if the parents in this case are social neanderthals, at least from the perspective of Academia. They tell reporter Bonnie Silkman in the video that they aren’t concerned about what identity he chooses as long as he chooses it, and not get indoctrinated into it by an activist teacher.

Do they have a case? Silkman posted a letter from the school essentially corroborating the parents’ allegations:

The most impressively loco part of this story is that the teacher still works at the school — a full year after the school confirmed the parents’ story. The only correction the teacher received was to be reminded of the district’s policies on “controversial issues” and to notify parents and the school when she “alters a student’s regular school day.” Meanwhile, this family will be dealing with the aftershocks of her actions for years.

The school district declined to comment on the story because of the lawsuit, but they might owe an explanation to the other parents in the district, especially to those whose children are within this teacher’s supervision. How many other children has she attempted to indoctrinate into transgender identities? And how many of the parents in this school district — and elsewhere — might start considering private schools or home-schooling to protect their children from predatory behavior?

The post Parents sue Oregon school district over attempts to transgender 8-year-old appeared first on Hot Air.

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