Parenting

A Balanced Approach to Children and Screens

posted by Andrea | 04/23/2018 | 27 comments

If I had to choose one word to sum up my thoughts on children and screens, it would simply be: “Moderation.” Shocking… I know!

If you’re looking for more information to help you evaluate the use of screens in your home, I’m sharing 3 simple guidlines that might bring more balance back to your own children’s screen usage.

Clara @ 6 Months + 6 Reasons More Children Has Felt Easier

posted by Andrea | 03/26/2018 | 17 comments

Miss Clara celebrated 6 months yesterday, and what a fantastic 6 months it has been!

Today I’m reflecting back on the past 6 months — specifically the fact that, for some crazy reason, mothering 4 children has actually felt significantly easier for me than mothering fewer children!

Reader Question: How Do You Handle Kids and Money?

posted by Andrea | 03/15/2018 | 38 comments

Kids + money has been a hot topic in the Dekker house these past few weeks, so I thought it would be the perfect time to share a recent Reader Question I got regarding how we handle kids and money!

Since our children are still so young, I definitely don’t feel like I have all the answers — so I’d love it if those of you with more experience in this area of parenting would enlighten us all in the comments!

Our Current Bedtime Routine

posted by Andrea | 02/20/2018 | 25 comments

Dave and I certainly have a long way to go before becoming “super parents” but I will say we have our kid’s bedtime routine DOWN TO A SCIENCE! 

Today, I’m sharing what our children’s bedtime routine looks right now — not because I think everyone should use our routine, but simply because I get asked about our bedtime routine quit eoften, and I know it’s always interesting to read what works for other families!

Simple Ways to Spend One-On-One Time with Young Children

posted by Andrea | 02/14/2018 | 20 comments

As we celebrate Valentine’s Day today, I thought it might be nice to share some super simple, frugal, easy, non-stressful ways you can show a little extra love to the little (or not so little) kiddos in your life!

What are your favorite ways to spend one-on-one time with your kids?

4 Months With 4 Kiddos!

posted by Andrea | 01/26/2018 | 39 comments

Clara is officially 4 month old… which means Dave and I have officially survived 4 months with 4 kids!

As a whole, these past 4 months have gone much better than I ever anticipated — for that, I am so grateful! However, there are definitely a few areas of my life that feel like they are in survival mode!

My Fourth 4th Trimester

posted by Andrea | 01/5/2018 | 8 comments

After James was born, I shared a little bit about how I always feel an improvement in my physical, mental, and emotional health after I make it through the 4th trimester — this time with Clara was no exception.

And as of Christmas Day, I officially made it through my FOURTH “4th trimester”!!

Reader Question: What Are Your Gift-Giving Traditions?

posted by Andrea | 12/7/2017 | 28 comments

Today is Dave’s 36th birthday — he’s officially closer to 40 than 30!

Since we’re in birthday mode around our house (Nora’s birthday was 2 weeks ago) and since the holiday gift-giving season is here, I thought it was the perfect time to post another reader question I got regarding gift-giving traditions… and I’d love to read some of YOUR gift-giving traditions!

How We Help Our Kids Give Gifts

posted by Andrea | 11/30/2017 | 11 comments

My children love giving gifts… but since they are so young, it’s often difficult for them to choose something appropriate for the recipient.

Thankfully, I have a REALLY simple system that allows my children to pick the “perfect” gift for their family and friends and still give useful and appropriate items.

Nora’s Birthday and Clara’s Baptism

posted by Andrea | 11/29/2017 | 12 comments

Our family had a VERY FULL Thanksgiving weekend… including celebrating Nora’s 6th birthday and Clara’s baptism in addition to our other Thanksgiving festivities.

The very simple combined Little Mermaid + baptism party was a success — and Clara wore a very special dress for her baptism!

Clara @ 2 Months… and The Hardest Part of 4 Kids For Me

posted by Andrea | 11/27/2017 | 39 comments

Two months ago, we added a sweet little girl to our family (seriously, how has it been 2 months already)! And over the past 2 months, I’ve been asked countless times what the hardest part of transitioning from 3-4 kids was/is for me.

I’m sharing that today… and my answer might surprise you!

Reader Question: How Do You Handle Kids and Technology?

posted by Andrea | 11/14/2017 | 34 comments

I’m back with another reader question… all about Kids + Technology!

I don’t have much perspective on this topic because of the age of my children — however, I KNOW so many of you with older children have great ideas, and I’d love it if you would share those ideas in the comments so we can all benefit from your wisdom!

Realistic Expectations – 6 Weeks Post Baby

posted by Andrea | 11/6/2017 | 21 comments

Life with a newborn… need I say more! 

We’ve definitely had some rough days and a few sleepless nights — but today, I’m sharing my thoughts on realistic expectations, and how my expectations played a HUGE role in my perception of these past 6 weeks.

6 Reasons Working from Home with Kids Works for Me (but might not work for you)

posted by Andrea | 09/26/2017 | 13 comments

If you’ve ever wondered how on earth I’m able to work from home with my kids, I hope these 6 reasons help to clear up any confusion.

I promise that I’m no “better” than any other working parent; I just have different skills and I’ve figured out a way to use those skills in a way that works best for me, for my personality, and for my family. 

I Did So Many Things “Wrong” and My Children Survived

posted by Andrea | 09/20/2017 | 34 comments

I get so many requests for parenting advice… but I often shy away from giving “advice” versus just sharing what works for me and my children.

So today, in hopes of offering encouragement to those of you who feel like you’re failing, I’m sharing many of the things I apparently did “wrong” (according to the experts and books) and how little those things actually mattered in the bigger scheme of my children’s lives!

A Few Thoughts on Volunteering

posted by Andrea | 09/6/2017 | 32 comments

I’m a huge advocate for volunteering for organizations I feel passionate about — and obviously, volunteer work is crucial to many schools, churches, and other community organizations. However, there are definitely seasons of life when volunteering is much less “doable”.

For those of you who feel really overwhelmed with the amount of volunteer work you might be asked to do this coming year, I hope this post lets you breathe a sigh of relief and realize you do NOT have to do it all!

Halfway… Encouragement for the REALLY Long Days!

posted by Andrea | 08/24/2017 | 24 comments

If you are in the thick of LOOOOONG days without enough parenting perspective to look back and see how far you’ve come, just know you aren’t alone. I think I can speak for all parents in saying, “We’ve all been there!”

I hope today’s post offers so much encouragement for parents with tiny children… and a few smiles for those of you with a bit more parenting experience!

My Parenting Don’ts

posted by Andrea | 08/8/2017 | 27 comments

Dave and I really don’t enjoy DOING a lot of extra things with young children. Too much ‘extra’ stresses us out, makes us crabby, and we become less fun parents. 

If you’re the type of parent who can nod in agreement with many of my Parenting DON’Ts, I hope this post helps you realize you’re not alone!