The transition from grade school to middle school feels significant for both parents and children. It marks a definitive shift in your child’s development and is often accompanied by many changes, both academically and otherwise. If you have a child preparing to enter middle school, you’ll want to be equipped to help him or her – but what should you know?

"One issue that constantly clouds youth sports is the unrealistic expectations many adults have that younger girls and boys will star in high school sports and earn scholarships to play in college. Many parents even believe their child will go on to become a professional athlete. I hate to burst their bubble, but the facts say otherwise."

What have I been up to when I don't see my friends for weeks, sometimes months, at a time? Sometimes I’m not even sure – until I REALLY think about it. Here's a typical day in my house, and this isn't considering any other factors – sickness, social engagements, husband out of town, etc. – that might throw a monkey wrench into our already “hanging on by a thread” lifestyle. 

"Kids ask a lot of questions, and as the leader in the "time spent with the kids” category at our house, I field the lion’s share of these inquiries," writes Molly Cavanaugh. "In doing so, I have come to recognize the innocuous questions and the ones that are going to trigger a flood of follow up investigating. In simple terms – a lot more stinking questions."

Family life can seem like one long stream of looking for things. The solution? Turn your hallway closet into a family command center – one you’ll actually use, one where those everyday essentials you are always looking for will have a home. 

Dear Sassy Housewife: My husband and I have been happily married for 13 years. We have three children. We have a great marriage – so much so that people sometimes poke fun at us for being "too perfect." Here's the kicker: I have a great guy friend at work who is also married. He's a few years older than me and has been married to his wife for about 16 years. We're all friends. We go to dinner together on the weekends sometimes even! But recently, I had a friend at work come up to me and ask if I was having an affair. It really shocked me because never once have I thought of ever cheating on my husband! What do I tell people? How can I stop these ridiculous rumors?

"A cruise with your family is among the most absurd settings for a miscarriage, but it is certainly not the worst. I had lost a speck of a child in this vast wonderland."

"I really have no preference to (my children's) career choices. If someone were to ask me what I want them to be when they grow up, I would say 'good citizens,'" writes Omaha mom Jaime Wyant. "I try to think of traits that I want my children to develop, rather than occupations."

One of the knocks against Disney has been that despite a wide variety of princesses in the company’s TV and film productions, there has not been one to represent the Hispanic population. That changes with the launch of “Elena of Avalor.”

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