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Must-Reads From the Parenting Trenches

Published on: December 30, 2013

candy_cornToo busy harvesting pumpkins to track all the interesting parenting news of the week? No worries, I've got it here for you in bite-size format. Pop the kids in bed, pull up a bowl of candy corn (or related snack) and dive in.

Are you in the picture? Blogger wrote blog post. Blogger confessed secret feeling that apparently many other mothers feel, too. Blog post goes viral. Blogger ends up on Today Show and elsewhere. Bloggers associated with said blogger also get the spotlight. Mothers everywhere confess their own version of the secret and promise to change.  One well-known blogger calls newly famous blogger's blog a "clarion call." Got it? Are you in the picture?

S'mores superstrength: A funny little psychological test from decades ago is getting a lot of chatter lately. Have you heard of the "marshmallow test" and the apparent predictions it can make about a kid's chance of success later in life? This story breaks it down. If you try it at home let me know. Don't forget to take video.

Before you post it on the Internets ... Everybody has a story, and everybody also has an opinion. "Striking Mom" Jessica Stilwell, whose very public (and personally inspiring, but hey, that's just me) experiment going on strike in order to teach her kids a lesson ended a week ago, is still facing backlash from, you guessed it, Internet haters. This is not a new thing for the mommy and daddy bloggers of the world. Just a reminder: If you post it, they will come.

In a novel idea, they asked the kids. There's a lot of controversy over whether drugs such as Ritalin, used to control ADHD in kids, are over-prescribed, numb kids emotionally and essentially turn students into zombies. A biomedical ethicist from Kings College London actually asked kids, though, and here's what they said.

Say what you mean, and mean what you say. We've all done it. Made the idle threat ("no dessert if you don't finish your dinner; if you don't stop that we're leaving this play date right now").  But do we follow through? Motherlode blogger KJ Dell'Antonia opens up her parenting closet and pulls out the most important advice she ever got.

And in election news ...

But what's your hourly rate, Mr. President? In an ABC News/Washington Post poll, 40 percent of registered voters said they would rather leave their child with President Obama than with Mitt Romney. That's a spike for the president apparently; two weeks ago the rivals were even with the babysitting question.

What's missing from the 2012 election conversation? Criminal justice and civil liberties issues, for one. Radley Balko argues that these non-commercial-ready issues aren't sexy for the polls but are important to all of us and our communities.

Roe v. Wade: What happens if it goes? A New York Times editorial on Monday explored the "brutal consequences." A worthy read for women and men alike.

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