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Stage of Life - Parenting Blog

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Stage of Life® is a writing community designed for parents to share their stories about raising a family.  Get involved with our educational mission:  Enter our monthly writing contests or share your parenting experiences and explore our parenting resources such as statistics about families, quotes about raising a family, family etiquette, funny family videos, and more.  Save money with our coupons for families too. Whether you're a single parent, traditional family, or multi-generational family, we look forward to reading your parenting essays.  Your stories may just help inspire other people raising a family. 

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Winning Essay WritersWinning Writing Contest EssaysFor over half a decade, StageofLife.com hosted on of the world's largest, monthly, multi-generational writing contests.  We've gathered up all of the essay winners, student and adult, from the past six years to feature on our writing contest winners page.  Between 2010 and 2016, we selected one essay each month from across all of the non-student life stages to win our monthly blogging contests

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Parent Stories

Having mixed feelings about a close friend who just got married. She had a fairly traditional wedding. A lot of work, time, and money spent by friends and family. Only to find out she will not be legally married for many years down the road. It feels icky that was not disclosed upfront. Am I wrong for those feelings?...
We currently have a son, 10 months old and another baby is on the way... My issue is not so much of lack of trust but lack of respect. I have voiced that I do not appreciate him going out to see his friends late at night. He has his friends come over our place almost every single day during the day time and they tend to stay for very long. I would prefer the guests would leave at the same hour I put our son to sleep but that is usually ignored. Moreover, I get extremely anno...
The first few years of marriage is the hardest. Add in a baby or two and hard is a serious understatement. Looking back, getting married and starting a family in my early 20’s was not the best decision. At that time, I thought I knew everything and could handle any curve ball thrown my way. As a typical oldest child, I was mature, confident, tenacious, and ‘in it to win it.’ Life I mean….. There was no challenge too high.What I quickly realized is that being married when ...
According to such scientists as Williams, Sawyer and Wahlstrom, there is a number of different types of love. I would like to focus only on five so far. Romantic love is, perhaps, the most known one. Sometimes it is called passionate love. This type of feeling lacks commitment. However, it can be developed over time if both partners will invest enough efforts and patience to build stable relationship. Companionate love seems the perfect one to me. These relations are time-tes...
I’m happiest when I’m able to forget about myself and become completely immersed in an enjoyable or productive activity. I like to think of it as escaping myself. During this time I’m focused only on the present situation around me and am not worrying about anything to do with myself. One way I know when I’ve escaped myself is when I zone out or lose track of time. I’m so wrapped up in the present experience that time goes by without me noticing. Another indication of escap...
When my daughter was a born we told my In-laws that we wanted no smoking around the baby.... My Mom pased away due tomnlung cancer so this is something I feel very strongly about... My In-Lwas come down to vist asked if they could watch the baby.. We agreed it would be ok If they did not smoke around the baby .. We got home early to find my mother in-law smoking with my daughter lap.. So my husband again had a talk about how we will not allow that around our babay.. Will need...
My son Ben got the first of his many Second Chances when we adopted him. His birth parents were high school kids, not at all prepared to assume responsibility for a baby. They placed him for adoption and we stepped forward, promising to give him a stable home, a good education, and all the love he deserved. He was a challenging child, programmed, it seemed, to test limits. He was suspended for fighting and stealing in 4th, 7th, and 8th grades, but not expelled because the pr...
Second Chances: School of LifeI used to have a lot of fear around giving people second chances. What if he were to lie to me again? What if she were to judge me harshly again? I used to try to decide whether to forgive, or trust people in the first place or not, based on whether I thought they were trustworthy. At some point, however, I realized that if I were going to trust others, I had to base my trust on myself, not on them. I learned that we often let each othe...
All believers in life eventually have something happen to them to start to question their beliefs. You ask yourself "How could this happen to me?" or "If God is real why would he let this happen?" and the truth is we've all been there, it doesn't make you a bad person, it makes you real. The day these thoughts rushed through my head was the day I lost my first baby. My husband and I had just started trying for our first baby, that month we were so excited to find out on Febru...
Back in 2003 I had gotten a job at a Kroger chain called QFC in an area of Washington state called Mercer Island. It was a good size island that the interstate I90 came through. It had two QFC's, one on each end, as well as other shops. After working at the North end store for almost a year, one of the main managers at my store appreciated my hard work as a courtesy clerk and offered me a temporary job at a Seattle QFC location to help assist customers with guiding people aro...
My fiance and I just relocated to a new state. We have a nice home with an extra room. We are pretty private people but on occasion we have people come over and have a good time. I was surprise when my fiance called me from the hair salon to tell me she extended an invitation to her hair stylist of 6 years to come and stay with us. She wants to open her own beauty shop where we live. I was okay with it at the time and said Okay! Then doubt started to creep in. I told my fianc...
Have you noticed that (almost) every blog post includes a list? Undeniably, a popular creative and functional format for delivering succinct messages. Apparently, we can’t seem to focus our attention on more than a few simplified snippets presented in point form. The New Year is a perfect opportunity to generate some new lists, so here goes ‒ my personal manifesto for 2016.• There is no limit to the amount of time and energy I can dedicate to social networking nonsense suc...
Bathtime with my kids reminds me of the old school Battle Ship game. It’s all about moves and counter-moves. Unfortunately, my one year old’s moves are mostly of the bowel type, so, like a good Naval Admiral, I must always have a counter-move ready.I recently discovered her recurring naval attack when I was bathing both my 3 and 1 year olds together. In order to keep the peace and maintain them in the water long enough to sanitize them, we’ve thrown in a random assortmen...
What's a good term for my situation?Existential crisis? Nah, too dramatic.It could be more of a midlife malaise, only that would imply I'll live to be 104, which would be fantastic. Problem is, if I'm currently peeing every morning in five languid installments, by the century mark I'll need a tasteful prostate pram to wheel around that leathery gland that partially popped free of my body in 2038.No, I'll just assess this situation using a system to which we grew a...
In a so cacophonic world filled with sensationalism within the news or some quick fame seeking shows, it can be easy to lose ourselves in a personal bubble that can so quickly be popped. The real value of somebody is not waht we accumulate, but how we are or shall be remembered soul wise. Indeed, to be kind and help folks in need, be it in a gesture like buying food or giving a special thank you note or gift of appreciation as small as it is, bring back smiles and even hugs ...
The empty-nest and the stuff in it.Liz PearlIt’s fair to say, I am not adjusting easily to the empty-nest. It’s unbelievable; in a flash ‒ this exciting chapter of family life is done. (Two decades ‒ boom, poof, gone!) From time to time, when I’m all alone in my quiet house, I wander around the empty nest reflecting upon the memories and our family history. And I can’t help but hope that the memories created and the bonds forged in this urban nest will be solid enough to d...
I am 65 and my wife 55 we have been married 24 years. On xmas we hosted 30 family and friends at our home. It was fun and enjoyable but a lot of work,Just now the day before New years eve she informed me that we are having a dinner event with her mother, my sister, her brother and one of her friends.....at our home New Years day. My problem was only that I requested being told before she started planning instead of after the planning and I am last to know. She took issue w...
On a brisk New England day, I appear at first glance to be a typical teacher, an average mom, aunt, sister and wife. There is nothing initially distinguishable about me. I look like an ordinary thirty-something mom running errands with her sticky toddler; most people don’t give me a second look. Whether I am at the bank, doctor’s office, pharmacy, or P.T.O meeting I am treated as expected, with polite respect and it is always reciprocated.On a humid New England day (if ...
With so many dating websites available, there has to be one out there for you. Some people are searching only for people who share their religion or their ethnicity. Some people are very serious about finding a marriage partner, while others just want to give their social life a boost. Decide what it is you are looking for before joining an online dating service.One of the original sites is Match.com. Just about everyone has heard of it and may even know couples who met on ...
This Christmas our gift to our adult kids and their families was an overnight stay to an indoor water park. We have three sons and a nephew who Lost both of his parents. One son is married - it's his second marriage now of 5 plus years. Another son lives with a women who befriended the other son's ex wife after his divorce and after developing and moving in with my other son (I hope this makes since - as it's difficult to follow). This, of course, created hurt feelings on se...
I’ve been implementing minimalist concepts in my life since the beginning of this year when I stumbled upon the blog, Zen Habits by Leo Babauta. I was instantly captivated, read every post and free e-book offered, and continue to follow it. Zen Habits led me to the blog, Becoming Minimalist by Joshua Becker, which I also devoured and continue to follow. If you haven’t read them you need to check them out, as soon as you’re done reading this!The blogs provide guidelines, ins...
Christmas is a very sensitive time for me as I am estranged from my family and my mother is sick and I miss her. I have three kids and we have started our own tradition of Christmas with our kids, my in laws and my husbands only sibling his brother. Well every year he brings a new girlfriend to Christmas and it really takes away from the family Christmas I want my kids to grow up with. His new girlfriend this year is really nasty to me. I clearly don't want her here on Christ...
I always keep my self busy preparing myself for work and related lessons and I need to be at home so that I can manage my studies and to give time for my wife (married 2yrs ) and for our daughter 4months old. But whenever I want to do these there Will be someone knocking on the door or sitting without permission enjoying with my wife. some neighbours leave their kids here and go for their business. Her family members come without even calling and enjoy and laugh even when ...
Have you ever wondered how you could encourage a special needs family? Read four ways we received encouragement and how it can give you ideas to do some encouraging of your own. http://www.miraclemann.com/2015/12/03/four-ways-to-encourage-a-special-needs-family/...
My husband and I have joked for years how we would spend our money if we won the lottery. We have different views on how we’d handle the responsibility, but we both agree we’d never tell anyone—not even our children. My husband has dreamed of winning the lottery for years. He’s decided to set up a fund and help others—after we paid off our house, put our kids through college, quit our jobs, and bought a new car. He already researched forming a foundation using the interest ...
There are five simple ways how to teach your children the entrepreneurship issues.
The development of entrepreneurial skills of children does not mean that you should give them the special classes or to teach some complex subjects. Without a doubt, the basic entrepreneurial skills can be very useful for children. With five simple ways, it will be more easier to perform.[b]1. Buy your kids only those things that they really need[/b...
If I won the lottery I would scream, cry, thank God, quit my job, and celebrate with my family! I’d take my husband and kids to buy a luxury motorhome that is fully equipped and able to tow a car. Next, my husband and I would hire a financial planner to set up accounts for ourselves, our kids, and family members and arrange donations to various organizations. We’d pay off our debt, sell our house, one of our cars, and donate most of our belongings. Finally, after getting all ...
Something miraculous happened to me today. I ran and enjoyed it. For those of you who are runners out there, this post might seem pointless. For someone like me, a self-proclaimed runner phobic, it was a moment of zen for me this morning when I realized that even after I reached my stopping point that I could have kept going. My running journey isn't a very inspiring one. In high school, I struggled to finish the mile during the President's Physical Fitness te...
Totalitarian Back-to-School NightDon’t ask questions. Don’t make a scene. Don’t be embarrassing.For the past 15 years, these have been my kids’ orders as I walked out our front door to tackle back-to-school night. This is reverse totalitarianism. Last night commemorated my 35th back to school night. I could attend back-to-school night every night. Countless questions fire through my mind, class after class, syllabus after syllabi. Music class launched last night’s fes...
While many children relish the spirit of competition, this isn't true for all. Highly competitive kids typically love team sports where they can show off their skills, win a trophy, and gain the respect of their peers and coaches. However, some children shy away from competition and avoid sports altogether. It could be that they simply aren't athletic and worry about being criticized for that. It could also be that they are introverted and don't like the interaction that team...

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