Home & Leisure

A nap derails an adoption

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Let your child nap in the car on a cool day while you run into the hardware store and you might have to say goodbye to your dreams of adoption.

That's what happened to a Colorado couple we'll call Ted and Jen. (They wish to remain anonymous, but I examined their paperwork.) Last spring, Ted's 3-year-old fell asleep on his way to Ace Hardware. ...Read more

Cardboard plus COVID-19 plus creativity is making this Halloween different

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Boo? Yes. Boo-hoo? Maybe not. This Halloween is going to be weird, indubitably. But that's just making a whole lot of folks think a little harder about how to make it work.

"I've been watching people kind of tossing out what they thought worked in the past. It's unleashed a whole lot of creativity," says Debra Ross, publisher and CEO of Kids ...Read more

Pregnancy policing the latest way to shame and blame moms

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Women who are pregnant or planning a pregnancy should completely avoid caffeine, according to a study published in the British Medical Journal -- and immediately picked apart by skeptics sick of women being warned that almost everything they do other than sip wheatgrass smoothies is a risk to their kids.

"I don't think we need to worry about ...Read more

The toddler toddled off; the mom ended up in handcuffs

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Vanessa Peoples was at a family picnic in Aurora, Colorado, when her toddler wandered off. She noticed him missing and ran after him, but not before a lady had scooped him up and dialed 911 to report a missing child -- and a bad mom.

By the time the fallout from this total nonevent was over, Peoples would be hog-tied by the cops in her own home...Read more

Pod regulations to stop parents in their tracks

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Pennsylvania parents thinking of starting a learning pod for their children should prepare to jump through some hoops. Then jump some more. And keep jumping.

The state Department of Human Services' Office of Child Development and Early Learning announced on Aug. 26 -- the day some schools were set to begin -- that families with kids attending ...Read more

Lazy cops entrap guys online instead of finding actual child rapists

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Want to save kids from rape and molestation? Me, too. Unfortunately, instead of going after actual sexual predators, some police officers have discovered that it's easier to just trick people. These cops go on adult dating sites, pose as grown women, find lonely guys, flirt and then claim they are actually underage. But the photos they send of "...Read more

Congress tries to regulate Halloween

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

On the one holiday of the year it's traditional to wear masks, Congress is nonetheless asking the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for coronavirus-era guidelines.

A bipartisan group of 30 lawmakers wonder what protocols mini ghosts, goblins, Trumps and Bidens should adhere to when -- and if -- they trick or treat. As The Hill reports:...Read more

It should not be standard operating procedure to strip-search little kids

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

Good news, parents: If you let your kids wait in the car for less than 10 minutes on a cool day -- doors locked and fan on -- a caseworker and sheriff are actually not allowed to come to your home, threaten to take your children away and strip-search the kids.

These very basic rights were just vindicated the hard way: by a Kentucky mom in ...Read more

Tennessee's (thankfully withdrawn) parenting initiative was a terrible idea

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

A week ago, Tennessee's Department of Education announced it was going to start conducting monthly "child well-being" assessments of every single kid under age 18 in the state. These could be by phone, email or a knock on the door. On home visits, the so-called well-being liaison would be allowed to interview the children privately.

Did the ...Read more

When a blackout provides light

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

What happens when you've got a power outage on top of a pandemic on top of marching in the streets, cancel culture, a crazy election and a boiling August when everyone seems ready to jump out of their skin -- and down your throat?

Some unexpected joy.

When Tropical Storm Isaias toppled trees across the Northeast last week, plunging 1.7 million...Read more

Parents engage in back to school-pocalypse shopping

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

If you look at Target's back-to-school ads, you might not notice anything different in the chipper array of Post-its, backpacks and pencils, except for one new item in the lineup: face masks. Still, the whole thing looks like business as usual.

The parents shopping for those supplies are anything but.

"My 11-year-old just asked me, 'Can I ...Read more

In pods they trust

Parents / Lenore Skanazy /

"It's a big mess," says Hollie Gesaman, a mother of two young children in Streetsboro, Ohio.

She was talking about the upcoming school year, of course. Her local school has drawn up "potential plans," she said, "but the bottom line is that there's really not a 100% good choice." Send the kids to school? There's a health risk. Keep them home, ...Read more



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