September 20, 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

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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 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

Say ‘No’ to team snacks

team snacks

What I object to is the need to create a network of snack suppliers for the little league T-ball game that lasts as long as a special episode of “The Mickey Mouse Clubhouse.” Are our children really so desperate for food that they cannot go even an hour without the promise of a treat? Read… Read more

The Fault in our Stars is a modern Romeo and Juliet

fault in our stars movie

Rated PG-13, 2 hours 6 minutes Julie Samrick Hazel is a 17-year-old with terminal cancer who starts going to support group to deal with her depression. She meets fellow teen Augustus Waters, whose vivacious personality soon rubs off on Hazel. Everything is wonderful except for the one fault in their stars- a nod to a… Read more

Best summer book recommendations

summer book recommendations

Summer means the tantalizing prospect of having more time for reading stretches ahead of us — long, lazy summer days curled up with a book. With that in mind, Newbery Award-winning author Kate DiCamillo shared some summer book recommendations for readers ages 8-13 with NPR’s Melissa Block. DiCamillo is the author of Because of Winn-Dixie and The Tale of Despereaux,… Read more

‘Maleficent’ tells her side of the story

Malificent

By Julie Samrick Maleficent is a well-intentioned fairy, a protector of her kingdom in the moors until her heart is hardened when she’s betrayed by the human world. She seeks revenge, taking her fury out on an innocent baby, Princess Aurora, thereby setting up the Sleeping Beauty story we know so well.   Like the… Read more

Middle school phone wars

cellphone kids crossing street

By Julie Samrick The verdict is still out whether or not the MTV effect will work on my sixth grader. When I was his age my mom delayed letting me watch MTV long enough that by the time I had the freedom to watch it, I’d never developed the habit and lost interest. My son… Read more

‘Every 15′ offers sobering reminder to teens

Every 15

By Julie Samrick One high school student lay dead, ejected from the vehicle her best friend drove seconds before. Only the frantic wails of a second passenger could be heard as she called her best friends’ names from the back seat, pleading for them to answer. The teenage drunk driver, also from the same high… Read more

7 dangerous apps parents need to know about

dangerous apps

Yik Yak – This app is one of the newest and one of the most dangerous. It allows users to post text-only Yaks of up to 200 characters. The messages can be viewed by the 500 Yakkers who are closest to the person who wrote the Yak, as determined by GPS tracking. Users are exposed to…Read more