July 26, 2017

What’s the point of youth sports?

coach-youth sports

Julie Samrick Finally, someone’s speaking out on the increasing madness of youth sports. A former professional athlete turned coach, now father of two, was in my town last week on one stop of a national lecture tour to promote his book “Changing the Game: The Parents Guide to Raising Happy, High Performing Athletes and Giving… Read more

What our puppy has taught the kids about parenting

IMG_2538

When I was 6-years-old my parents told my three sisters and me we were adopting a baby boy. When I got off the school bus the day of our much-anticipated special delivery my mom was there to greet us. “Meet your new little brother,” she smiled, pointing to what would become our faithful companion for… Read more

The smart phone standoff

smart phone

At long last we’ve found a happy medium. My seventh grader got his much-desired smart phone this summer and everything I dreaded about it hasn’t happened (knock on wood).  He’s not on it 24/7 or even head down, zoned out, while we’re in public places. That was our first social stipulation about getting such a… Read more

The Hundred Foot Journey is just what we all need

100 Foot Journey

By Julie Samrick As political, social and religious wars rage around the world and we hear of the bloodshed of children, the most innocent among us, most other topics seem petty to discuss.   Yet the new film The Hundred Foot Journey is just what the world needs right now. I’ll even predict this movie… Read more

On Book Leave

images-3

By Julie Samrick I wanted to let you know I’ll be taking a short leave from writing articles for Kid Focused while I work on a clean, kid friendly, novel. I’ve always wanted to tackle a book and have finally found my inspiration. I may still post for Kid Focused but wanted you to know… Read more

Earth to Echo is mere echo of ET

Earth to Echo

Julie Samrick   Rated PG Overall Kid Focused grade: B- Running time: 1 hour, 29 minutes   Three childhood friends Tuck, Alex, and Munch are on a mission to save their suburban neighborhood from having a freeway built through it in Earth to Echo. On the last night before demolition begins and their families are… Read more

Type 1 Diabetes facts and myths

Type 1 Diabetes

By Julie Samrick Three-year-old Joseph’s flu-like symptoms were the first indicator something was wrong. “It was odd because he was only vomiting at night and he was really lethargic during the day,” said his mother Alicia. “We were struggling with potty training anyway, but he started peeing everywhere and was just guzzling liquids.”   Alicia… Read more

The best summer school

summer lessons

By Julie Samrick As we sat around the campfire last weekend I pulled out an old Girl Scout goody for the 11 kids in our party. My Aunt Tilly, she died last night, she died last night, did she die?   At first the kids didn’t know what I meant, or why sometimes the answer… Read more

Home at Last: Family dog found after 20 months in the wild

Dog found after 20 months in the wild

By Julie Samrick   On Oct. 6, 2012, the Braun family’s golden retriever Murphy, startled by a gun shot, bolted into the Tahoe National Forest near an off-trail campsite at Hell Hole reservoir.   Over the next two days they scoured the area for Murphy but that Sunday evening they went home to El Dorado Hills in the… Read more

How To Train Your Dragon 2 is much more than its title

how_to_train_your_dragon_2_movie-wide

Overall Kid Focused grade: A- Rated PG Running time: 1 hour, 45 minutes   By Julie Samrick   Since dragons were banned, then accepted, in the first How to Train Your Dragon movie, dragon racing has become the Vikings’ favorite pastime in its sequel, How To Train Your Dragon 2.   The son of Chief… Read more