At County Spelling Bee, LCE 6th Grader is I-n-v-i-n-c-i-b-l-e

La Cañada Elementary School Principal Emily Blaney made it a point to tell students participating in Spelling Bees on her campus and later at the district office that while most of them would be knocked out, they could find consolation knowing they’d never forget how to spell the word on which they were eliminated.
She’s proof. Ceaselessly got her once. But never again.
LCE 6th-grader Gabriel Gottheim didn’t have to miss sabbatical or demarcate or memorabilia for those words to earn a permanent place in his memory bank. Continue reading “At County Spelling Bee, LCE 6th Grader is I-n-v-i-n-c-i-b-l-e”

Humiliation, Sacrifice and Plenty of Fun at TACH Bash

For the 10th year, La Cañada High School students threw a bash that was sure to get folks in town talking: 250 people showed up, many of them throwing pies in the faces of LCHS students, some of them dumping buckets of water on the teens. One student lost his parking spot at school next to Principal Ian McFeat for the rest of the school year.
All that and more in the name of charity. Continue reading “Humiliation, Sacrifice and Plenty of Fun at TACH Bash”

Valentine’s Day is for Families, Too

Dear Parents,
Valentine’s Day is traditionally a fun-loving favorite for children. Red will rule the day as they head off to school Friday with specially chosen valentines, heart-shaped cookies for the class party and perhaps secret thoughts of a special someone they’ve had their eye on.
This celebration can extend into a weekend celebration for families. Jump at the chance to pause and put some fun into your ordinarily crammed schedule. Take time on this Valentine’s Day weekend to share special love in your family.
In his insightful book, “The Five Love Languages of Children,” author Gary Chapman describes the variety of ways children experience the giving and receiving of love. Continue reading “Valentine’s Day is for Families, Too”

College Daughter Has the Winter Blues

Dear Parent Coach,
Our daughter is a college freshman at an Eastern university. She called us this week (unusual!) saying she is under a lot of stress with her classes. She admits she is staying up too late and isn’t eating well. She seems to manage having fun, but doesn’t have the same drive to handle her studies. She’s questioning whether or not she’s cut out to be in college, or if this is the right college for her. We aren’t ready to give in and say come home, but we feel frustrated and worried. How can we help her?
Signed, Puzzled Parents Continue reading “College Daughter Has the Winter Blues”

Sibling Rivalry is Universal in Families

Sibling rivalry is as old as Cain and Abel and as current as the latest argument at this morning’s breakfast table. Anyone who has at least one sibling has experienced its dynamics.
Whenever there is more than one child living in a family, sibling rivalry will naturally occur. However, petty arguments between brothers and sisters do have some basis and understandable causes. Every child has the primal desire to be loved, to have emotional security, in addition to the basic needs of food, clothing and a guidance-oriented environment. When there are two parents who are the source of all these needs, the more children who are living in a home, the more parents will be divided in their efforts to provide. Continue reading “Sibling Rivalry is Universal in Families”

Grandparenting in Magical Santa Barbara

Dear Parents,
At the end of the day, it is the trusting relationship one builds and maintains with a child that matters most. This was the conclusion I came to as I stood on the end of the Santa Barbara pier with grandchildren Ivy and Everett, watching the sun set on the first day of a new year. I quietly sang taps to them: “Day is done, gone the sun . . . safely rest, God is nigh.” None of us wanted to leave, but it was getting dark. Continue reading “Grandparenting in Magical Santa Barbara”