Their House, Our House and the In-Between

Sometimes the long to-do lists, shuffling of children between homes, sports practices, camp days and appointments gets to be too much. When days overflow with more activities than hours, it’s hard to figure out how to manage it all between two houses. The truth is, when you have children, jobs to work and a household to keep in order, you will have some days that are harder than others. Finding a way to create positive communication and collaborative between both homes is the key to reducing the house shuffle stress.
Here are a few tips for making it work:

Communicate early and in writing. When something comes up that you know will affect the other parent, such as soccer practice or a needed change in your schedule, be sure to communicate it in writing as soon as you can. Giving enough time to work through scheduling conflicts will result in less stress for everyone - most importantly, your children. Having everything in writing is the best way to ensure the information was delivered correctly. Exchanging dates and times quickly at pick up or drop off almost guarantees that something will be misheard or forgotten. Make it easy on both of you and just send it in an email.


Boundaries in a Stepfamily

As a stepmom that word makes me cringe. It's something that’s taken for granted before finding yourself in a stepfamily: the ability to always see, know, and understand someone’s boundaries. I have no doubt that it’s also difficult on the other end as the parent sending your child over to your ex’s blended home. The thing about boundaries is that they usually aren’t given much thought until after one is crossed, and the emotional response that can follow the perceived overstepping is often immediate and intense.


3 Quick Tips for Your Remarriage

As with any marriage, a remarried couple needs to determine how their relationship is best managed. Each couple has their own strengths and weaknesses and they must find the rhythm of how to work together.
Here are a few foundational tips to starting off on the right track:
Tip #1: Find what works for you

Thinking of it like having a new baby – you will receive a ton of unsolicited advice as soon as your relationship is birthed. Some of it will be well intended and some of it won’t be, but either way you need to move to the beat of your own drum. No one knows the ins and outs of your relationship and the private details of your family. For some blended families, it’s best to have clear lines drawn in the sand for responsibilities and daily tasks. For example, you may each take care of getting your own children off to school. You may keep your finances separate or you may decide that certain events will not include the step-parent. For other marriages, life will be more interlaced, to include the interactions and parenting of children, finances, and all family decisions. There are no right or wrong answers – whatever works best for your family is the path to follow regardless of what you may read or hear from outside forces.


Remarriage Can Be Scary

While remarried couples can face difficulties due to their past, bringing children into the mix adds another layer of challenges that the couple must overcome. Blending families are fast becoming the norm in our society and each one is unique. According to the US Bureau of Census, 1,300 new stepfamilies are formed every day with over 75% of divorcees remarrying within 10 years of their divorce, resulting in over 50% of U.S. families being formed by remarriage or re-coupling.


Welcome to The Mixing Bowl

We live in a time where the typical family doesn't look like any one thing. Being a step-parent is no longer a rare thing. But still many parents don't know exactly how to deal with this kind of situation, and questions abound. For instance, when you marry someone with children, how do you deal with your relationship with that child? How do you resolve two different parenting styles?

Blended families...