Archives for June 2009

Check Out Our Recommended Sites!


Have you seen "Mom’s Life" writer Rebecca Ingram Powell’s newly redesigned site? It premiered earlier this month and is a great resource for Moms.

Check out this link and other ParentLife writers like Dr. Mom and Dr. Mintle in the "Sites" index.

Tell us about other great sites you like to visit for parenting advice and godly encouragement!

June ParentLife Giveaway Winners

Congratulations to Jeff D., Jonathan G., Crystal, Mary K., Janet B., Peter, Leslie B., Anthony P., and Brenda S. — the winners of our June giveaway!


IllStudyBibleforKids2.jpgEach of these readers won a copy of the new Illustrated Study Bible for Kids by Holman Bible Publishers. Thank you Holman for donating the extra copies to give away!


Keep checking our blog for our July giveaway … coming soon!

Fireworks Safety


Each Independence Day, thousands of people, most often children and teens, are injured while using consumer fireworks. Despite the dangers of fireworks, few people understand the associated risks — devastating burns, other injuries, fires, and even death. Consider the following facts.

  • The risk of fireworks injury was two-and-a-half times as high for children ages 5-9 or 10-14 as for the general population.
  • On Independence Day in a typical year, more U.S. fires are reported than on any other day, and fireworks account for half of those fires, more than any other cause of fires.
  • In 2006, fireworks caused an estimated 32,600 reported fires, including 1,700 total structure fires, 600 vehicle fires, and 30,300 outside and other fires. These fires resulted in an estimated 6 civilian deaths, 70 civilian injuries and $34 million in direct property damage.
  • In 2007, U.S. hospital emergency rooms treated an estimated 9,800 people for fireworks related injuries; 56 percent of 2007 emergency room fireworks-related injuries were to the extremities and 36 percent were to the head.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is a member of the Alliance to Stop Consumer Fireworks, a group of health and safety organizations, coordinated by National Fire Protection Association, that urges the public to avoid the use of consumer fireworks and instead, to enjoy displays of fireworks conducted by trained professionals.

Do you see fireworks displays each year as part of your Independence Day festivities?

Fun Friday Photo — June 26, 2009



Eli is happy!

Thanks to Erin E. for this great photo!

Photos wanted! Send us your funny, cute, or just plain fun pictures for our Fun Friday Photos. Each Friday we will post a new "Fun Friday Photo." E-mail your photo and a suggested caption describing the photo to Visit the blog each Friday to see if your photo was chosen!

The Famous First Birthday

Several times over the past week, I have glanced around my house at the clutter of baby toys, stacks of baby laundry, misplaced sippy cups, and stray Cheerios® and I’ve thought to myself, Wow! How life has changed over the past year!

63.birthday.jpgI’m still in denial, but in about two weeks, we will be celebrating Jack’s first birthday. Needless to say, I’ve been doing a lot of reading about planning a baby’s first birthday party. I never cease to be amazed at the broad spectrum of strong opinons on this topic. There are some who think it’s silly to celebrate the first birthday at all since your child will not remember it. Then there are others who spend gobs of time (and money I might add) planning the "party of the century." Maybe I’m being a bit overdramatic! But you know what I mean, right?

I’m happy to say that I fall somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. I believe every birthday is a great opportunity to celebrate and the first one is no exception! But I also believe that simple is usually better. We are planning a small get-together with family and a few friends. There will be decorations, candles, balloons, presents, and of course … birthday cake, but nothing over the top! It will be a great opportunity to thank God for blessing our lives with Jack (whom we can’t imagine life without) as well as to thank all of the family and friends that have supported us during this major life transition.

So I’m curious. How did you celebrate your child’s first birthday? I’d love to hear your thoughts, suggestions, and ideas!


Lawnmower Safety

62.lawnmower.jpgUsing a lawn mower is as routine as bike riding or barbeques during summer months. But people can find themselves in terrifying situations with these seemingly safe household machines. In fact, 200,000 people – 16,000 of them children – are injured in lawn mower-related accidents each year, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reports. Most injuries are caused by careless use and can be prevented by following a few simple safety tips.
“Power lawn mowers are dangerous adult tools, but many children, and sometimes adults unfortunately, see them as toys,” said ASPS President John Canady, MD. “Lawn mowing can be dangerous to the operator as well as those nearby if proper safety precautions aren’t taken.”
The following tips will help prevent lawn mower-related injuries:

  • Children should be at least 12 years old before they operate any lawn mower and at least 16 years old for a ride-on mower.
  • Children should never be passengers on ride-on mowers.
  • Always wear sturdy shoes while mowing – not sandals.
  • Young children should be at a safe distance from the mowing area.
  • Pick up stones, toys, and debris first from the lawn to prevent injuries from flying objects.
  • Always wear eye and hearing protection.
  • Use a mower with a control that stops it from moving forward if the handle is released.
  • Never pull backward or mow in reverse unless absolutely necessary – always look for others behind you when you do.
  • Start and refuel mowers outdoors – not in a garage. Refuel with the motor turned off and cool.
  • Blade settings should be set by an adult only.
  • Wait for blades to stop completely before removing the grass catcher, unclogging the discharge chute, or crossing gravel roads. (As a safety feature, some newer models have a blade/brake clutch that stops the blade each time the operator releases the handle.)

To read the AAP policy statement, “Lawn Mower-Related Injuries to Children,” click here.

This information is sponsored by a coalition of the following organizations: American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS), the American Society of Maxillofacial Surgeons (ASMS), the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), and the American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery (ASRM).

What chores do you involve your children in during the summer?

Nature Rocks!

Nature rocks.png

Nature Rocks is an initiative created to inspire and empower parents across the country to take their families to play, explore, and enjoy quality time in nature. Nature Rocks has been designed to ensure that all families – regardless of budget, kids’ ages, or experience – can plan affordable and fun activities in nature that encourage family bonding and nurture happier, healthier, and smarter children.

As part of its efforts to empower parents to take their kids outside, Nature Rocks introduces its 2009 Summer Nature Staycation Planning Guide. Available at, this free guide provides parents and caregivers with information and tools to enjoy no- or low-cost summer vacations in nature that are close to home. 

Developed through a partnership between The Nature Conservancy, REI, The Children & Nature Network, and ecoAmerica, Nature Rocks is designed to to inspire and empower families to play and explore in nature — as fun, family bonding in nature helps kids become happier, healthier, and smarter.

The Web site,, provides parents over 100 fun, inexpensive, interesting, and safe activities based on specific criteria including location, kids’ ages, and time available. Additionally families can find activities in their immediate area via an easy zip code search tool. Because of its range of activities, Nature Rocks ensures that all families, whether outdoor enthusiasts or nature novices, can get involved in nature the way that suits them best. 

What do you like to do in nature with your kids during summer?

A Father’s Love

The ParentLife staff hopes that all you dads had a special day yesterday!


Steven Curtis Chapman fans displayed “a father’s love” for their children in a special Father’s Day video tribute that features Chapman’s hit single “Cinderella.” Fans were encouraged to submit family photos and, as a result, over 150 photos were chosen to create two heart-warming videos on

To view these unique Father’s Day tributes visit:

Tell us what your family did to honor Dad yesterday!


Fun Friday Photo — June 19, 2009


6-month-old Hudson gives his Mommy sweet smiles first thing in the morning!

Thanks to Stacy and Ben F. for this great photo!

Photos wanted! Send us your funny, cute, or just plain fun pictures for our Fun Friday Photos. Each Friday we will post a new "Fun Friday Photo." E-mail your photo and a suggested caption describing the photo to Visit the blog each Friday to see if your photo was chosen!

Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption

wendys_logo.pngThis Father’s Day, Wendy’s is serving up a tasty treat for Dad and a chance to give back while spending time with the family. Visit any participating Wendy’s over Father’s Day Weekend (June 21-22) when Wendy’s will donate 50¢ from every Frosty sold to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption (DTFA), a non-profit public charity dedicated to  increasing the adoptions of the more than 150,000 children in North America’s foster care system.

logo-trans.pngKids can visit to choose from a variety of scenes and objects, from sandcastles on the beach to baseball in the backyard, and create a free custom Father’s Day e-Card for Dad! To top things off, Wendy’s will donate an additional 25¢ to the DTFA for every Frosty Card sent.
What fun things do have you planned for Father’s Day?