Simple Families

By Denaye Barahona Ph.D.

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Parenting + Minimalism

Episode Date
Mental Clutter in Parenthood
16:25

Many of us have been decluttering our homes for some time. But what about our brains? Mental clutter is real. Parenthood can feel heavy. We are tackling the 10 reasons that parenthood feels cluttered and overwhelming. If you are committed to self-care but aren’t sure where to start, I want to invite you to join …

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Jul 14, 2021
Listening
19:06

One of the most common concerns I hear from parents is this: "My kids don't listen to me!" Generally, what this means is that you ask your kids to do something and they don't do it. Maybe you ask them several times. Perhaps you ask them several times with an increasing sense of urgency until …

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Jul 08, 2021
Minimalism Your Way
47:53

Minimalism looks different for everyone. When Christine Platt found minimalism she expected it would involve moving towards an all-white, barren aesthetic. But in search of an intentional life, she has built a home and lifestyle that is unique to her individual needs and culture. Christine, also known as the Afrominimalist, encourages us to search for …

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Jun 24, 2021
Reminders
27:31

Get dressed. Brush your teeth. Say thank you. Eat your breakfast. Sometimes we sound like a broken record. We feel like we are prompting and reminding our kids to do things all day long...and sometimes we are. It's exhausting! That's what we are talking about today. I'll share my tips and tools for success.

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Jun 17, 2021
Fears of Simplicity
23:24

What if I get rid of something that I might need someday? How will my kids react? Making a big lifestyle change can feel scary. Moving towards simplicity is no exception to this. In today's episode, we are discussing common fears around living a simpler life.

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Jun 10, 2021
Consequences
27:09

You should know this by now. I’ve asked you a hundred times. How could you forget?  Today we are going to talk about consequences, punishment, and discipline. How do we raise kids to take ownership and care for themselves and their belongings? Today I’m going to give you some things to think about and some …

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May 27, 2021
Be Like Bamboo
26:41

I’m going to start today off with a quote:  “We’re often afraid that if we give our kids an inch, they will take a mile. Every single grain of rice in their bowl must be eaten up, every toy in its proper place, every “I” dotted and “t” crossed. We believe this is comforting to …

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May 20, 2021
Science
38:29

If you’ve tuned into the news at all in the past year, you’ll know that there’s a heck of a lot of controversy around science. Whether we are talking about climate change, masks, or vaccines you’ve probably come across disputes and wars of words on scientific topics. I think back to a generation ago, where …

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May 13, 2021
The Simplicity Connection
20:57

There are many ways in which society has constructed parenting to be far more complicated than necessary. The result is parental overwhelm. As parents, we all have the same goals. Raising happy, healthy, successful kids. In order to reach those goals, we commit ourselves to doing anything and everything possible. We want to give our …

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May 05, 2021
Summer Plans
22:38

Summer used to be synonymous with time-off and relaxation. But times have changed and many parents now feel a sense of dread and overwhelm around the unstructured time that comes during the summer—especially after spending over a year at home. Today, we are talking about finding balance this summer. 

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Apr 29, 2021
Body Image
40:30

I’ve seen numbers that say over 90% of women are unhappy with their bodies. Our body image, or the way we perceive our own bodies, is impacted by family, friends, social media, the news, and more. Many of us entered motherhood with pre-existing body image challenges, and pregnancy and motherhood can exacerbate that. Today I’m …

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Apr 22, 2021
Quick-Fire Q&A
29:09

In this episode, I'm doing a quick-fire Q&A. I have a long list of questions from you all and I'll be moving through, answering a variety of questions. We will be covering whether or not I have a junk drawer, parenting kids with bad attitudes, capsule wardrobes, defiance, video games, camping, lots of questions about …

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Apr 14, 2021
Get Good with Money
42:17

For the longest time, I was a budget-resister. As a minimalist, I don't buy a lot of stuff so I didn't think I needed a budget. But I was wrong--moving towards a consistent, air-tight budget has been one of the most intentional changes that we have made in our family. Today I'm chatting with author …

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Apr 08, 2021
Clean Up

"It's just too much." My daughter, who is newly 5, said this to me for the first time this week. She asked me to come clean up her room with her and when I walked in she sighed and said, “it’s just too much”. We don’t have a lot of toys, but she manages to …

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Mar 18, 2021
Jillian
47:54

If you've been around the podcast for sometime, you will be happy to hear I'm bringing back the "Journey to Simplicity" series. In this series I chat with both friends and members of the Simple Families Community. We talk about what a simpler, lighter life looks like--and spoiler alert! It's always imperfect and a work-in-progress. …

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Mar 10, 2021
Self-Doubt
16:27

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Mar 03, 2021
Saying No

Saying ‘no’ can feel hard—especially to people we love. But if you are feeling overwhelmed and stressed out, you might benefit from saying no more often. We have to take ownership over how we spend our time, money, and energy. If we don’t, we will end up burned out, exhausted, and broke.

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Feb 18, 2021
Therapy
14:37

We are nearly one-year into a global pandemic, therefore I’d say we are far overdue in talking about therapy. Therapy: Who needs it? How do you get started? Maybe you are interested in exploring therapy but you have decision fatigue—there are far too many options and you don’t even know where to begin. Today I’m …

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Feb 12, 2021
Bedwetting + Accidents
52:17

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Feb 04, 2021
Outdoorsy
11:46

Maybe you don’t consider yourself an outdoorsy person. Maybe you have a kid who isn’t into nature. I totally get that. The truth is that nature can be uncomfortable. It’s often: Too bright.  Too hot. Too cold.  Too windy.  Too loud. But we are all nature people, in fact—we need to spend time outdoors for …

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Jan 27, 2021
Downsizing
50:36

Our family recently downsized in a big way. I've had many people ask why we sold our lovely home and the short answer is: It's complicated. My husband, David, is joining me in today's episode for a candid conversation about the perils of homeownership and moving towards simplicity.

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Jan 21, 2021
Hitting
30:45

Let's talk about kids who hit. Let's also talk about adults who hit. This kind of behavior is taboo, especially as kids get older. We aren't as open to talking with friends about it, and sometimes we feel like we're the only parent facing this problem. There's a lot of self-blame that goes into this as well. I …

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Jan 13, 2021
Know Better, Do Better Guilt
13:28

In today's world, we are inundated with information. Whether it be about parenting, cooking, art projects, gardening…the world is quite literally at our fingertips thanks to Google.  The result is that we often feel like, if the information is available to us, we should consume it. And we should be able to put it into …

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Jan 06, 2021
Over-gifters

We are knee-deep in the holiday season, so let's take a moment to talk about over-gifters—these are people in your life, or especially your kid's life, that give more gifts than you'd like. Generally speaking, these are good, well-intentioned, loving people. The last thing you want is for them to walk away, feeling hurt, alienated, …

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Dec 23, 2020
Prep Talks

We have different expectations for our kids’ behavior based on the type of environment that we take them into. Perhaps you feel at ease when you pull into a playground, and your kids can jump out to just run, yell, and play. But what if you have to take them to a department store to …

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Dec 16, 2020
What's missing this holiday season?
9:59

Caroling at the holiday party,  The live stage performances,  In vivo religious gatherings,  Shared meals,  Santa's lap and festive parades,  plane rides or road trips.  People we love. There's so much empty space left to fill. That emptiness often leads to discomfort. But, as humans, we have a way of filling those voids without pause. …

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Dec 10, 2020
Santa
19:04

Let’s talk about Santa. I’ll start by saying this is not a kid-friendly episode, because we will be discussing Santa from the perspective of a parent. If you know what I mean. If you have a child present with you—press pause and come back to this. With the Holiday Season upon us, I know many parents …

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Dec 03, 2020
2020 Holiday Gift Guide
24:28

This gift guide isn't meant to literally click and buy (although I've included links for ideas). Instead, it is intended to make you think differently about gifting. Our kids may grow out of their toys, but they won't grow out of spending quality time together as a family.  If we want to stay focused on …

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Nov 18, 2020
Organize vs. Minimize
12:16

Organization can feel like a false promise of more. If only you could be more organized, you could manage MORE stuff. You could handle MORE on your calendar. But the truth is, the sheer quantity of…everything…is inundating us.  My efforts at organization mostly lead me to feel like a total failure. I can’t organize my …

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Nov 12, 2020
Simplify Feeding
28:47

We all want our kids to eat well. We will try anything and everything to make it happen. But what if sometimes we try too hard and end up mucking it up in the process? There is plenty to be said about simplicity and feeding children--today we are exploring this topic more.

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Nov 05, 2020
Hard Decisions
21:37

Today we are talking about upsetting our kids. Sometimes as parents, we have to make hard decisions for our kids. Decisions they don’t like. Decisions that upset them. We are talking about feeling that tension between what your child wants you to do versus what you actually need to do.  This tension can quickly turn …

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Oct 28, 2020
Challenging Relationships (Part III)
18:14

In today's episode, Part III, we're going to talk about how we can work to improve and better understand the challenging relationships that we have in our lives. We will cover setting boundaries, empathic listening, building connection, and communication patterns. Listen to: Part I Part II

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Oct 21, 2020
Challenging Relationships (Part II)
18:32

In last week's episode, we started talking about challenging adult relationships. I asked you to think about who that person(s) is for you. Now, this week we will talk about setting goals for those relationships and the impact of idealizing these relationships. In the previous episode, we discussed that some of the people who challenge …

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Oct 14, 2020
Challenging Relationships (Part I)
19:36

We all have challenging people in our lives. Maybe it's your brother or your mother or a best friend from childhood. Our goal is to try to start viewing this person through a new lens—so you can reframe your mindset and your attitude. This topic of relationships is incredibly broad and I want to narrow it …

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Oct 07, 2020
Spilling Anger
10:24

Stress can lead to anger and irritability. In today's episode, we are talking about how anger can spill over onto the people we love the most, including our partners and children. I'm sharing how we talk about this concept with our kids.

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Sep 30, 2020
Messiness
16:30

For the first 30 years of my life, I struggled with messiness. No organizational system worked for me. In this episode, I'm sharing about my natural tendency towards mess and chaos along with how simple living has changed that for me.

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Sep 23, 2020
Comparison, Envy, and FOMO
22:34

One of the greatest, if not THE greatest, obstacle to simplicity with kids is FOMO. The fear of missing out. We worry about our children missing out on toys, experiences, and opportunities that they desire. We worry our children will be negatively impacted as a result. We fear they are going to miss opportunities. We …

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Sep 16, 2020
Expansion & Contraction
16:05

Today I'm sharing my best relationship tool. It's called expansion and contraction. Expansion and contraction is a simple way to find the rhythm in your family. In fact, it's probably something you do all the time without even noticing. However, once you bring it to your awareness you will be able to use it with …

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Sep 09, 2020
Why Do Kids Whine?
13:37

Our family was on vacation recently--and my husband and I wanted to explore some new sights. We love to wander around and breathe it all in. My kids don't always share this joy. In fact, on this particular trip, their legs seem to quit functioning altogether. They "couldn't walk" another step but could miraculously ride …

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Aug 26, 2020
Screen Time Rules for Kids
26:44

Do you feel like you need some new screen time rules for your kids? There’s a good chance that your kids have consumed an increased amount of screen time during the pandemic. Whether it’s for work, school, or pleasure—we’ve all been home more and utilizing new devices in new ways. But what hasn’t changed is …

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Aug 19, 2020
Back to School Q&A
22:32

After our last episode, Educating Your Child in a Pandemic, I got a lot of questions. Today I'll be answering your questions about returning back to school this year. Show Notes/Links: Link to First Name Basis episode on privilege White Fragility by Robin DeAngelo

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Aug 12, 2020
Educating Your Child in a Pandemic
27:40

Right now, many of us are thinking about back to school decisions. Educating your child in a pandemic is no easy task. Homeschooling? Distancing Learning? In-person school? Even if we are privileged to have a choice, making hard decisions for our families can feel agonizing. You may even lose sleep over it. That's why I'm …

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Jul 29, 2020
Why Children Will Benefit from Fewer Toys
24:06

The toy industry sells us the story that our children need toys to be happy. In fact, we are sold the story that our kids need lots of new toys to be content. You may have come to believe that more toys=more joy and find yourself spending countless dollars attempting to prove this theory to …

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Jul 22, 2020
Caffeine + Crisis Habits [Quick Wins]
8:52

We've all picked up on a few habits during this crisis--and some of those habits might not be serving us. Today I'm sharing more about my attempts to moderate caffeine, a habit that I've leaned on hard the past few months. I'd love to hear from you. Do you have any habits you are trying …

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Jul 15, 2020
Simple Things I Say to My Kids
24:10

When we speak to our kids, words do matter. We don't have to get it right all.the.time, but I like to use the same phrases repeatedly to help drive home important lessons. Therefore, I’m sharing the 10 exact expressions my kids hear on a regular basis. Sometimes the simplest things can be the most impactful. You …

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Jul 08, 2020
Rules [Quick wins]
8:10

In our house, we have three primary rules that guide the way we parent our kids. Today, I’m sharing the three rules and how we talk to our young children about them.  Here they are: Respect the rights of other people,   Protect and care for the environment (both inside the house and out),  Take only …

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Jul 01, 2020
Mental Clutter 101
16:25

Many of us have been decluttering our homes for some time. But what about our brains? Mental clutter is real. Parenthood can feel heavy. We are tackling the 10 reasons that parenthood feels cluttered and overwhelming. 1. Mindless Social Media Spending mindless time scrolling on social media feels a lot like eating marshmallows. They taste …

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Jun 23, 2020
Homeschool Reflections
38:59

We are wrapping up our first year of homeschooling and I wanted to share my reflections with you. I know that many people are considering homeschooling next year due to the pandemic, but our family is planning to send the kids to school. Tune in to hear the things I loved about homeschool and the …

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Jun 17, 2020
Reentry
14:09

Many people around the world are reentering and finding a new "normal" after several months at home. In today's episode we are talking about what this might look like. This includes communication about your comfort level in socialization, finding the silver-linings, acknowledging the experiences of others, recognizing resilience in your children, and making space for …

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Jun 10, 2020
Talking to Kids About Race
21:44

Are you wondering how to talk to young kids about race? I'm so pleased to welcome Jasmine Bradshaw to the podcast today to share her insights. Jasmine and her husband Carter are the voices behind the podcast First Name Basis. Her work is a resource that I will return to time and time again. Be …

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Jun 03, 2020
Pantry [Quick Wins]
4:59

Today I'm introducing a new format for summer. I'll be intermittently sharing some shorter episodes like this one that include a few straightforward tips and tools that you can implement right away. We are going to start in the pantry, one of the spaces that took me the longest to get under control. Screenshot while …

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May 27, 2020
Absolute Thinking
20:48

I love you, I hate you. You always yell at me. You never cook anything I like. Young children tend to think in black and white. Their feelings can be big, bold, and intense. In this episode, we are discussing why this happens in everyday conversations. We will also discuss how we can help our …

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May 20, 2020
Parental Preference
23:24

Do your kids show a strong preference for one parent or the other? In today's episode we are discussing why this dynamic exists and some tips for helping to balance things out at home. Show Notes/Links Simplifying Siblings Episode 160: Selfless or Selfish?

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May 13, 2020
High-Functioning Anxiety
31:33

In today's episode we are chatting about high-functioning anxiety. Many of us experience challenges with fear, worries, and anxiety. I'm sharing more about my experience and some of my favorite tips and resources. Mental Health Resources: Betterhelp Immediate Help COVID-19 Mental Health Resources 5 Tips for Managing High-Functioning Anxiety Do a reality check Monitor caffeine …

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May 06, 2020
Spending Plan
26:09

Today we are talking about minimalism, money, and developing a spending plan. For years I was a budget-resister. I wanted nothing to do with having a budget for our family. But now I'm singing a different tune. The reality is, developing a solid spending plan for our family has been one of the most intentional …

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Apr 29, 2020
Eco-Friendly Families + Getting Kids to Take More Risks
54:37

In honor of the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, I am joined by Stephanie Seferian from the Sustainable Minimalists Podcast. We are chatting about realistically moving towards sustainability and raising kids to love our Earth. I'm also answering a question from Kara, she asked: How can I get my kid to take more risks? Part …

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Apr 22, 2020
Kids + The News
35:04

In times like this, it can be hard to explain the News to our children. In today's episode, I'm chatting with Andrea Barbalich, the editor-in-chief of The Week Junior. The Week Junior is a brand new magazine that simplifies the news for kids. Andrea and I are discussing how to bring discussions around the news …

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Apr 15, 2020
Q&A | How can I design a play space for kids of different ages?
17:25

In today's episode we are discussing how to develop a play space that is suitable for children of multiple ages. Do we really need baby toys? Can we find toys that grow with children? How do we balance safety and developmental needs? These are questions we are diving into in this episode.

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Apr 14, 2020
How to Use a Reward Chart
25:59

Not all reward sticker charts are created equal. In today's episode, I'm going to explain how to use a reward chart effectively--and I will also explain why we don't use them very often. How to Use a Reward Chart When I was five-years-old, I was terrified of putting my head underwater in the pool. Swimming …

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Apr 08, 2020
Q&A | Am I doing enough to supplement my kid's education right now?
12:59

You are enough. You are doing enough. In today's episode, I'm taking a question that many parents across the world are wondering: Am I providing enough structure/educational stimulation for my child in this time of crisis?

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Apr 07, 2020
5 Tips for Stress Behaviors
16:18

Irritability. Potty accidents. Night wakings. Tantrums (child AND adult). Difficult behaviors can increase during times of stress. In today's episode we are discussing the implications of stress and uncertainty on child and adult behavior. Because most of us are feeling it at this time, right? Show Notes/Links: Simple Families Foundations

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Apr 01, 2020
Q&A | How do you get kids to do quiet time?
16:07

Who could use a little quiet time right now? I see you nodding your head. Yes, me too. In today's episode we are talking about initiating quiet time with young children. During this period of social distancing, even short periods of quiet time can be life-giving to parents who are all-hands-on-deck 24/7. Thanks for tuning …

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Mar 31, 2020
Hillary + Beatrice's Story
53:15

We all know that it's important to stay home right now--it is our social responsibility. The Weidner family is one of a million reasons this continues to be important. Today I am bringing you their story. Hillary and her husband Jordan are not strangers to social isolation--they were put on a year-long lock down after …

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Mar 25, 2020
Q&A | What should I buy to keep my kids busy during isolation?
16:33

If you have bored kids driving you crazy right now, the easy solution might be to shower them with new toys and activities to keep them busy. But sadly, Amazon doesn't have the answer to all our problems. An onslaught of new stuff will keep kids busy for a short period of time, but the …

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Mar 24, 2020
7 Tips for Social Distancing (with Kids)
14:49

I'm feeling grateful that I have the ability to work from home during this season of life. But having the whole family home right along with me isn't exactly a "walk in the park". Today I'm sharing my 7 best tips for staying sane in an extended time period of social distancing. The Recap: 7 …

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Mar 18, 2020
Q&A | Are you in a state of news overwhelm?
13:31

Are you inundated by the news right now? Is there such a thing as too much news? We are raising children in an era of constant exposure to the news--it hits us instantly 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. With the current pandemic, it has many of us captivated as we find it …

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Mar 17, 2020
Partnership + Parenthood
52:02

Partnership is transformed in parenthood. Today I am joined by Shane Birkel, a podcaster and couples therapist. Shane and I are discussing communication and relationship patterns for partners during the early years of parenthood. Show Links: Shane Birkel - Website Shane's Podcast - The Couple's Therapist Couch Relational Life Therapy (Shane's Method) Gottman Method Emotions Focused …

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Mar 11, 2020
Q&A | How are you handling the spread of coronavirus?
12:22

I know you are already inundated with the news on COVID-19. But we are going to talk about it a little here today too--I'm taking a question from an audience member wondering how we are handling it in our family. Show Notes/Links Green Kid Crafts Kid's Podcasts Story Pirates Molly of Denali Rebel Girls Stories …

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Mar 10, 2020
Minimalist Wardrobe Challenge
43:34

I'm joined by Courtney Carver, author of the brand new book Project 333: The Minimalist Fashion Challenge That Proves Less Really is So Much More. In today's episode, she shares her minimalist wardrobe challenge that has spread throughout the world. I also have my sister-in-law, Kim, joining us for a mini-coaching call with Courtney. Kim …

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Mar 04, 2020
Q&A | How do you teach little girls that they are more than pretty?
12:22

How do I teach my daughter to value her inner-beauty? How do I teach her that self-worth isn’t sealed into pretty? I will teach her that strangers can’t see the beautiful stuff on the inside. However, out of some bizarre cultural norm she will find that these strangers constantly praise and discuss her external appearance. …

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Mar 03, 2020
Q&A | Is The Mental Unload™ right for me?
13:22

What if you are too overwhelmed to deal with your overwhelm? I hear this a lot. This week we are launching a new round of The Mental Unload™--my signature 7-day program that focuses on decreasing mental clutter. Even if you think you don't have the time for this, I'm going to explain all the details …

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Feb 25, 2020
A Special Story
1:02:15

The truth is, parenthood rarely turns out how we expect. Today, I'm happy to introduce you to my friend Jen. I met Jen over twelve years ago--long before my motherhood journey began. She's the mother of a son with special needs and twin daughters. Jen's love and tenacity have always inspired me. I'm thankful she …

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Feb 19, 2020
Q&A | How do you occupy a young child?
16:12

We often feel a great responsibility to keep our kids occupied and happy. That can be a heavy burden to carry. In today's episode, we are talking about understanding this need and setting boundaries to benefit the whole family. Show Notes/Links: Visual Timer on Amazon Visual Timer App

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Feb 18, 2020
Q&A | What if a kid says "yuck" at the dinner table?
14:38

What if your kid says "yuck" at the dinner table. Cooking a meal for your family is hard work and when your kids express distaste, it can really get under your skin. The truth is that most kids think in black and white: they either love a food or they hate it. Not only do …

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Feb 11, 2020
Executive Function
48:25

What is executive functioning? As parents, it is important to understand that executive function is one of many components that is in-development in the early years of life. As our children grow, they slowly develop the ability to make plans, organize their ideas, follow directions, and manage time. This process can feel slow and arduous. …

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Feb 05, 2020
Q&A | How do you handle sibling fights?
20:07

Do my kids fight? YES. Today I'm sharing some of my favorite tools and thoughts around sibling relationships. I'll be honest, this is one of my biggest challenges in parenthood. But with time, I've been able to develop empathy that gives me the ability to stay calm in times of crisis with my kids--and that …

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Feb 04, 2020
Reflections on a Treat-Free Month
23:15

I am wrapping up a treat-free month with my kids. Back in December, the cookies, candy, and treats got more than a little out of hand. This month has been a learning process for my kids, but more importantly for me. I've been able to let go of some of my longtime beliefs about the …

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Jan 29, 2020
Mindful Eating in Parenthood
46:13

Anyone parenting with a busy schedule will tell you that the quality of food you are feeding yourself may be lacking. It can take time, thought, and effort to feed ourselves well. On the podcast today, I'm chatting with my wellness guru, Megan Lyons. We are chatting about mindful eating, managing cravings, embracing hunger, meal …

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Jan 23, 2020
Q&A | What about a kid who won't take "no" for an answer?
12:19

Do you have a kid who struggles to take "no" for an answer? That's the question we are covering today. The truth is, somtimes we need to firm up our "no" when talking to our kids--I'm giving you a few examples of what this sounds like. I'm also giving you an example of how I …

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Jan 21, 2020
Marie's Story
51:00

In today's episode, I'm sharing a journey to simplicity. Marie, a Simple Families community member is giving us a closer look inside her day-to-day life. She's been working towards simplicity for over a year and has found that a simpler life improves her well-being and the overall harmony of her family. Marie and I discuss …

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Jan 15, 2020
Q&A | Should you make kids apologize?
13:12

Should we insist that our kids apologize or say "I'm sorry"? I actually don't. However, both my kids have come to apologize and express authentic empathy in their early years (without my demanding it). They have learned to do so naturally through their environment. When it comes to teaching manners and empathy, we can cue …

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Jan 14, 2020
Sleep + Parenthood
27:50

In three years of podcasting, I've never shared my own views on sleep. This is not an accident. The reality is that I'm afraid to approach this divisive topic. I do have a lot of opinions on the topic, but today--I'm sharing the 7 most important things I've learned about sleep and parenthood in my …

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Jan 08, 2020
Q&A | How do you get kids to sleep in?
16:43

How do you get your kids to sleep in later? That's the question for the day. Although there is no magic bullet, I have a few tips to help you move in the right direction. Including some strategies around using an "Okay to wake clock". I'm also sharing something simple that I'm loving this week. …

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Jan 07, 2020
Find Your People
40:39

Happy New Year! Today we are talking about the Simple Families "word for the year": Community. Building a community in parenthood can feel like "one more thing" we have to do. But it’s invaluable to you and your family as you grow, change, and face the rollercoaster of life with kids. In this episode, I’m …

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Jan 02, 2020
My Year Without Alcohol
58:03

Back in January, I joined the sober curious movement as I gave up alcohol for the year as a New Year's Resolution. It was an amazing year and I learned so much about myself. Today I'm sharing my month-by-month experience and Brooke Conley joins me for moral support. Show Notes/Links: SFP 128: Living Coffee ’til …

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Dec 18, 2019
Scoot Over and Make Some Room
43:24

Stepping into new spaces can make anyone uncomfortable. For many of us, developing a relationship with an individual with special needs might be new territory. In today's episode, we have Mama/Author/Advocate Heather Avis sharing her ideas about raising kids with kindness and moving towards inclusion. "When we walk into the world with our children we …

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Dec 11, 2019
Q&A | How to Talk to Kids about Santa
16:42

Are you wondering how to talk to your kids about Santa? That's what we are chatting about today. Actually, I'm introducing something brand new today! Starting in 2020, I'll be adding a second weekly episode to the Simple Families Podcast. In addition to the regular weekly episode, I'll be adding a shorter form episode. Today, …

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Dec 10, 2019
Gillian's Story
1:14:15

In today's episode, I'm bringing you a Journey to Simplicity. I'm chatting with Dr. Gillian Goddard, a physician living outside of New York City with her husband and four kids. Although Gillian's life may feel anything but simple, she and her family have made strides towards finding the balance and rhythm that works for their …

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Dec 04, 2019
Holiday Gift Guide
35:43

Ready for a mindset shift around gifts this holiday season? In today's episode, we are discussing how to gift with intention. This includes shifting the conversation around gift-giving with your kids and choosing gifts that will keep-on-giving. I'm also sharing the 10 items on the Simple Families 2019 Holiday Gift Guide. Show Notes/Links Shifting the …

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Nov 20, 2019
Simple Holiday Prep
56:12

If you are striving to simplify the holidays this year, take a listen to my chat with three of my favorite minimalist mamas, Erica Layne from The Life on Purpose Movement, Zoë Kim from Raising Simple, and Rachelle Crawford from Abundant Life with Less. Between the four of us, we have 12 kids under age …

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Nov 13, 2019
When Your Cup Overflows

Some days I feel like every mother I know is ridden with stress and overwhelm. This type of parenthood seems to be slowly becoming the norm. In today's episode (episode 178) we are talking about what happens when your cup overflows. When your cup overflows the contents spill out and splash on the people who …

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Nov 06, 2019
Why Kids Need Art

I really don't know much about art, but I'm learning. One thing I know for sure is that art is important, for kids and adults alike. Today I'm chatting with author Meri Cherry about art + kids. The tagline on her book "Creative Activities and Projects that Inspire Confidence, Creativity, and Connection" got me thinking. …

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Oct 30, 2019
SFP 176: Conversation With My Husband

In honor of my birthday week, I'm bringing you a casual conversation with my husband David. It's his first appearance on the podcast and we are talking all things love, marriage, and parenting.

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Oct 23, 2019
SFP 175: Early Bloomers

Parenting an early bloomer comes with its own set of challenges. Those of us who have precocious children know this well. Today, we are discussing the ins and outs of early blooming from a child development perspective. And I'm sharing more about my personal experience parenting an early bloomer and being an early bloomer myself. …

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Oct 16, 2019
SFP 174: Ambitious Travel with Kids

Right now, I'm tired. We just returned from a two-week international trip with our family. Today I'm sharing all the details: the plans, the obstacles, dealing with jet lag, letting go of expectations, and why we keep doing it. Show Notes/Links: Packing videos on Instagram Saccharomyces Boulardii (to prevent travel's diarrhea) Ambitious Travel with Kids …

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Oct 09, 2019
SFP 173: Sustainable Fashion for Kids [with Brendan Synnott of Pact]

When it comes to kids, buying more sustainably can feel intimidating. If you are unsure of where to start or how to prioritize, we are chatting more about this today. Our guest is Brendan Synnott, the CEO of Pact, and he's bringing us insight on the sustainable fashion industry, organic cotton, and what he's doing …

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Oct 01, 2019
SFP 172: A Day in Denaye's Life

Life with young children is always evolving. The way we spend our time changes too. Finding the right balance that works for each of us is incredibly important. The way I spend my time is going to look very different from the way that you spend yours. In today's episode, I am sharing what a …

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Sep 25, 2019
SFP 171: How to Talk to Kids about Money [with Liz, author of Piggy Banks and Lemonade Stands]

Have you started talking to your kids about money? Money can be a taboo topic, even within families. In today's episode I'm chatting with Liz Frazier Peck author of Piggy Banks and Lemonade Stands: How to Teach Young Kids About Finance (and They're Never Too Young). SHOW NOTES/LINKS: Piggy Banks and Lemonade Stands: How to …

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Sep 18, 2019
SFP 170: Overly-Responsive Parenting?

Is there such a thing as overly-responsive parenting? I believe so. Early in parenthood I found myself being a mindreader. It is important to be in tune with our kids' needs, but we also need to give them the opportunity to step up and advocate for themselves. Join the Masterclass! It starts Monday and this …

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Sep 11, 2019
SFP 169: Too Many Toys?

Do your kids have too many toys? When it comes to toys, there is no perfect number. But in today's episode we are talking about why children don't need a lot of toys. Having an abundance of toys is not only unnecessary but could be harmful. We are talking about all that and more. Complete …

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Sep 04, 2019
SFP 168: Hiking with Kids [How + WHY]

Life gets busy. Sometimes it gets hard to make time for the simple things--like taking your kids for a walk in nature. But the value of the free and simple things should never be underestimated. Today, I'm sharing my favorite strategies for hiking with kids and the immense (yet not-so-obvious) benefits for the whole family. …

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Aug 21, 2019
SFP 167: The Love Languages + Children [with Diane Debrovner of Parents Magazine]

In today's episode, we are discussing the 5 Love Languages as they pertain to children. I am joined by Diane Debrover, the Deputy Editor of Parents Magazine where we talk through each of the Love Languages and explore how they show up in children. Spoiler alert: I've got my reservations about the Love Language of …

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Aug 07, 2019
SFP 166: The Tip of The Iceberg (Brain Busyness)

Summer is supposed to be relaxing, yet I have found that this summer we've had a lot of transition, a lot of change, and my brain has been very busy. Therefore, today's episode is dedicated to just that: We're talking about the "Tip of the Iceberg" and brain busyness. [FULL TRANSCRIPTION] This week we're getting …

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Jul 23, 2019
SFP 165: Journey to Simplicity | Jane's Story

Today I'm chatting with Jane Monnier about her journey towards reducing mental and physical clutter. Jane is a longtime member of the Simple Families Community. She's also is a rocket-scientist-turned-military-wife-and-mother who has lived around the world with her family. I think you will enjoy Jane's wisdom in this episode! (Full episode transcription below). Show Notes/Links: …

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Jul 10, 2019
SFP 164: Late Bloomers [with Rich Karlgaard of Forbes Magazine]

In today's episode, I am chatting with Rich Karlgaard, Publisher of Forbes Magazine, about his new book Late Bloomers. Rich is a self-proclaimed late bloomer. He's sharing more of his story along with some research that will give fellow parents of late bloomers some piece of mind. Show Notes/Links The Book: Late Bloomers Rich's Website …

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Jun 26, 2019
SFP 163: Reflections on Bad Language + Potty Talk

It happens. All kids will use less-than-desirable language as they are growing up. Whether its potty words or outright profanity, we all deal with this as parents. Today I'm reflecting on how we've been managing it in our house--including what is working and what is not working.

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Jun 19, 2019
SFP 162: Reading Aloud + Our Book Overhaul [with Emily Cook of Build Your Library]

I recently went through and did a huge book overhaul. I got rid of all the "twaddle" in favor of prioritizing high quality, well-written children's books. To quote today's guest Emily Cook, "well-read children will grow into well-read adults". In this episode, Emily and I talk about reading aloud and choosing great books for our …

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Jun 12, 2019
SFP 161: Behind-The-Scenes

It's officially book launch week! In today's episode I am sharing more about the publishing process behind Simple Happy Parenting, along with my goals and hopes for the book and what exactly I am afraid of. Thank you for all your support! You can still claim the pre-order bonus during launch week!

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Jun 04, 2019
SFP 160: Selfish vs. Selfless Parenthood [with Hunter of Mindful Mama Mentor]

There is a fine line between selfishness and selflessness in parenthood. In today's episode, I'm chatting with Hunter Clarke-Fields of Mindful Mama Mentor. We talking about martyrdom in motherhood and how trying to be-it-all and do-it-all is not actually the best thing for kids. This is an important message for every parent. SHOW NOTES/SHOW LINKS: …

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May 29, 2019
SFP 159: Slow Living with Kids: Painful or Delightful?

Slow living with kids...what does that look like? Frankly, the days can feel painfully slow. But sometimes they can be delightful. What gives? Today we are talking about shifting toward a slower lifestyle and what that looks like with family life. Finding a balance between structured and unstructured family time can help us find more …

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May 22, 2019
SFP 158: Practical Steps to Simple, Happy Parenting [with Desirae Endrees of Minimalish]

I get to be on the other side of the table today! In today's episode, I am being interviewed by the host of Minimalish, Desirae Endrees. I had the pleasure of being a guest on Minimalish last week and I loved our chat so much that I wanted to re-air this episode for you on …

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May 15, 2019
SFP 157: Our Decision to Homeschool

In today's episode I am sharing more about our decision to homeschool. Homeschool was never in the plans for our family, so I will tell you more about our decision to go down this path. I'm also sharing some of the vital pieces in making this process successful for our family. Hint: It doesn't involve …

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May 08, 2019
SFP 156: Little Bits of Happiness [with authors Marc and Angel Chernoff]

Changing your mindset and finding joy usually doesn't happen overnight. Baby steps, right? In today's episode, I am chatting with authors and happiness experts Marc and Angel Chernoff. We'll explore the small ways we can increase happiness and life a more intentional life. Show Notes/Links: Marc and Angel's Website: Marc & Angel Hack Life Find …

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May 01, 2019
SFP 155: Simple Happy Parenting [The First Chapter of My New Book]

On the podcast today I am reading the first chapter of my new book, Simple Happy Parenting: The Secret of Less for Calmer Parents and Happier Kids. Show Notes/Links: Preorder the book: Simple Happy Parenting Grab your spot in The Masterclass

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Apr 24, 2019
SFP 154: Simplifying Parenthood [with Nicole Smith]

Simplifying parenthood may sound like a lofty goal. But in today's episode, I am chatting with Nicole Smith, a mother who has made huge strides. Nicole is sharing her 'Journey to Simplicity' that has happened over the past few months. Nicole is a wife, mother of three children, and a former participant in the Simple …

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Apr 17, 2019
SFP 153: Simple Living + Free-Range Parenting with Big Kids [with Tsh Oxenreider of The Art of Simple]

In today's episode, Tsh Oxenreider is sharing more about her "Journey to Simplicity". Tsh is a wife and mother of three who has been on the path towards a simpler, more intentional life for over a decade. Tsh is an author and the voice behind The Art of Simple and the podcast 'Simple'. She's sharing …

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Apr 10, 2019
SFP 152: The Fear of Underparenting

Overparenting is a phenomenon that happens for many parents who have the best of intentions. We want the best for our children and as a result, we want to do everything and be everything for them. This happens because we are fearful of not doing enough. We fear underparenting. This often spills over into discipline. …

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Mar 27, 2019
SFP 151: The Comparison Game [with Erica Layne of The Life on Purpose Movement]

In the age of social media, it's impossible to avoid "the comparison game". In this episode, I am chatting with my friend Erica Layne from The Life on Purpose Movement. We are exploring the tendency to compare our family to others and how the comparison game and emotional clutter has impacted us personally. SHOW NOTES/LINKS: …

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Mar 20, 2019
SFP 150: Tips on Choosing Childcare + My Experience with the Au Pair Program

Since we brought our first au pair last summer I have received nearly constant questions about the experience. So today, I am sharing my thoughts on all types of childcare arrangements (including daycare, family care, nannies, nanny share, etc.) and how we came to our decision to use an au pair. In this episode, I'll …

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Mar 13, 2019
SFP 149: The Science Behind Outdoor Play + Movement [with Carla Hannaford Ph.D.]

Last week, we had a primer on the importance of outdoor play with Linda Åkeson McGurk. This week, I am re-airing an important follow up piece on the scientific perspective on this topic. In today’s episode, I speak with Carla Hannaford, world-renowned biologist and outdoor advocate, about her studies on the connection between movement and …

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Mar 06, 2019
SFP 148: Getting Kids Outside in ALL Types of Weather [with Linda from Rain or Shine Mamma]

Today I have one of the top Simple Families episodes! I am re-sharing my chat with Linda Åkeson McGurk about the importance of getting kids outside in all sorts of weather--even in the heart of winter. There’s no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes. Linda, a Swedish mother, joins us to talk about …

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Feb 27, 2019
SFP 147: Mothering Without A Village [with Lora Amigo]

The journey into motherhood isn't easy for any woman. But after giving birth here in the U.S., there is societal pressure to return to a "normal life" almost overnight. In other cultures, this transition comes more gently. Women are given more time, more support, and more grace. In today's episode I am chatting with my …

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Feb 20, 2019
SFP 146: International Perspectives in Parenting [with Devishobha Chandramouli of Kidskintha]

As a parent raising children in the United States, I realize that I have a lot to learn from other cultures around the world. In today's episode, I am exploring an international perspective with Indian mother Devishobha Chandramouli. Devishobha is raising her children in India, but is also involved and informed with Western parenting practices. …

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Feb 13, 2019
SFP 145: Q&A - Why Do Some Kids Turn into Angry Zombies with Screen Time?

Why is it that some kids turn into zombies in front of a screen? Then they get angry and act crazy when we turn it off? That's what we are talking about in today's episode. I'm going to be skimming the surface on some brain research and share how I use this to manage and …

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Feb 06, 2019
SFP 144: Talking to Young Kids about Sex [with Amy Lang of Birds+Bees+Kids]

In today's episode, I'm chatting with Amy Lang about sex. She's sharing her best tips on how to talk to kids about sex, the human body, teaching consent, and the sexualization of childhood. This is a conversation that needs to be on the radar of all parents with young children. SHOW NOTES/LINKS: Amy's Podcast: Just …

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Jan 30, 2019
SFP 143: Q&A - How do you handle when your parenting choices clash with others?

The way that you parent will look very differently from that of your close friends and family members. Today I am answering a listener's question. We are discussing how to manage these relationships when you have very different expectations for your own children. Show Notes/Links: Cooperation: the Mini-Course (FREE) Overview of Diana Baumrind's Research on …

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Jan 23, 2019
SFP 142: Organization for Everyone [with Rachel Rosenthal]

In today's episode I am chatting with professional organizer Rachel Rosenthal. If you are anything like me, you might struggle with complex organizational systems. Rachel is bringing her best tips to keep it simple and approachable--and maybe make 2019 your most organized year yet. Show Notes/Links: Rachel's Online Program (use the code NEW YEAR for 10% off) Rachel's Website Rachel …

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Jan 16, 2019
SFP 141: Q&A - Can you tell us more about your 2019 resolution?

If you've ever wanted to drink less alcohol, then you might want to tune into this episode. I've had a lot of questions about my 2019 resolution to give up alcohol--even though I wouldn't classify myself as a heavy drinker. Today on the podcast I am sharing more about my "why" and some of the …

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Jan 09, 2019
SFP 140: Slow Resolutions [with Erin Loechner]

In today's episode I am chatting with Erin Loechner. Erin is an author, blogger, designer, and mother of two. She shares her journey towards simple living along with her best tips for making slower New Year's Resolutions--including arm circles, waking up before the kids, and finding your own definition of self-care. Show Notes/Links: Find Erin …

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Jan 02, 2019
SFP 139: Q&A - How Do I Get My Kid to Play Independently?

Independent play doesn't come easily to all children. In today's episode we are discussing what to expect from independent play as well as how to support our children to do it more often. When it comes to independent play, it's important that we do three things: gauge our expectations as parents; assess the individual personality …

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Dec 27, 2018
SFP 138: Q&A - Is Your Social Media Actually Real Life?
16:40

About 95% of everything I put on the internet is real life, not staged. The other 5% includes things like the photo in this post, because I generally don't frolic in fields in pretty dresses. Today I am answering a question from a reader about how much of what I share with you is representative …

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Dec 18, 2018
SFP 137: Let's Stop Hurrying our Children [with Janet Lansbury]
39:42

I don't know about you--but my kids have the tendency to move slowly. They function on their own timeline. The result is that as parents, we often find ourselves "hurrying" them to speed up and get on our agenda. In today's episode I am chatting with Janet Lansbury about hurrying our kids through their days …

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Dec 12, 2018
SFP 136: Taking the Road Less Traveled [with Rachel from Sage Parenting]
48:06

Taking the road less traveled is not always simple. During the holiday season the list of obligations grow rapidly and saying "no" can seem out of reach. Today I am chatting with Rachel Rainbolt from Sage Parenting. Rachel and I are talking about the idea of "doing life differently". Many of us are raising our …

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Dec 04, 2018
SFP 135: Choosing Great Toys [with Lizzie Assa from The Workspace For Children]
35:25

Buying new toys for our children can be exciting--but it can also be overwhelming. There are so many options out there and our children are inundated with marketing materials. Today I am chatting with Lizzie Assa from the Workspace for Children. She and her family buy toys outside of the mainstream options--that means they lean towards …

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Nov 28, 2018
SFP 134: Happier for the Holidays [with Gretchen Rubin]
59:27

We all believe that the holiday season is the happiest time of the year. But is it really? Today I am chatting with Happiness Guru Gretchen Rubin about finding happiness in the holiday season. You may know Gretchen from one of her New York Times bestselling books, her top ranked podcast, or perhaps most importantly …

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Nov 19, 2018
SFP 133: Holiday Q+A [Part II]
23:39

Welcome back to Part II of the Holiday Q&A (If you missed Part I, catch it here!). Rachelle Crawford from Abundant Life with Less and Zoë Kim from Raising Simple are joining me to answer the rest of your holiday questions. Today we will chat about minimal decorating, envy amongst children, simple holiday meals, and more. We will bring …

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Nov 14, 2018
SFP 132: Holiday Q+A [Part I]
32:05

The holidays are upon us. I am here to tell you that you don't need to do or buy all.the.things. Today is the first of a two-part series focused on answering your questions about living a more intentional holiday season. I am joined by Rachelle Crawford from Abundant Life with Less and Zoë Kim from …

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Nov 07, 2018
SFP 131: Rewiring Our Brains for Gratitude [with Josie Robinson of The Gratitude Jar]
35:49

Dare I say that developing a gratitude practice is actually easy? I was pleasantly surprised at how quickly small acts of gratitude have changed my life. In today's interview I am chatting with mother and gratitude expert Josie Robinson about her unlikely, yet transformative journey. LISTEN AND SUBSCRIBE ON ITUNES Show Links/Notes: The Gratitude Jar …

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Oct 31, 2018
SFP 130: Letting Go of Unrealistic Expectations in Motherhood [with Natalie from Better Postpartum]
33:44

Starting in the early days of pregnancy we set expectations for ourselves. Perhaps your kids won't have screen time. You will breastfeed for one year or more. Your kids will only eat organic. In today's episode Natalie Telyatnikov [from Better Postpartum] and I are sharing some of the unrealistic expectations of which we have let …

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Oct 24, 2018
SFP 129: Work Can Be Self-Care [Meghan Fitzgerald of Tinkergarten]
32:42

Most of us feel like there's no way we could add one more thing to our plate. But the truth is that starting a side-hustle (or part-time passion-driven work) can actually be a form of self-care. I know that for me, working helps to fill up my cup so I can be more calm and …

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Oct 17, 2018
SFP 128: Living Coffee 'til Cocktails [with Brooke Conley]
41:50

Sometimes there is so much to be done that we find ourselves needing coffee to wake up in the morning and wine to take the edge off and calm down in the evening. In today's episode I am talking with Brooke Conley about alcohol + motherhood. If you have ever thought about cutting back on alcohol …

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Oct 10, 2018
SFP 127: Simple Q&A | Too many gifts, siblings quarrels, social media + kids
26:32

Today on the podcast I am sharing a Q&A episode. That means I am taking your questions and giving you my honest, unfiltered answers. In this episode we are talking about how many gifts to give, how to manage sibling squabbles, minimalism in different regions, and mealtime struggles.

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Oct 03, 2018
SFP 126: How to Give Your Child the Very Best [with Bill Deresiewicz, author of Excellent Sheep]
28:29

As parents, we just want to give our kids the best. We want to give them opportunities and send them to the best colleges. Sometimes that means signing them up for all the classes and starting the resumé in the earliest years. In today's episode I am chatting with author Bill Deresiewicz. We are discussing the …

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Sep 26, 2018
SFP 125: The Value of Just Staying Home [with author Rahima Dancy]
34:55

In today's society we often feel like we need to be out and about, entertaining our children and staying busy. In this episode I am joined by author Rahima Dancy. We are discussing the educational value of just staying home with our children--because their most important learning experiences start right at home with us. Show …

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Sep 18, 2018
SFP 124: Rethinking Education in the Early Years [with Aubrey Hargis of Child of The Redwoods]
39:17

[Heads up--there's a wee bit of audio issues in the first part of the interview, but hang it there--it gets better!] This month we are going to be rethinking education. For anyone that has followed the podcast for sometime, you will know that I am an advocate for progressive forms of education. Namely child-led learning …

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Sep 12, 2018
SFP 123: Simple Q&A
27:41

Back by popular demand, today's episode is a Q&A format. I am answering a variety of your questions about positive parenting, minimalism, moving, homeschooling, and childcare [all rather unapologetically--because remember this is opinion and what works for my family]. Show Notes/Links Follow Simple Families on Instagram Simplify Child Behavior Program Preview App Oak Meadow Cultural …

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Sep 05, 2018
SFP 122: Intentional Fatherhood [with Clark Davis]
25:11

Today is the first ever male guest on the podcast. While it's long overdue, I am happy to welcome my friend Clark Davis. Clark is the final interview in the series 'Journey to Simplicity' this month. In today's episode, Clark shares his insight on living small, intentional fatherhood, and minimalism. Not only is Clark on …

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Aug 29, 2018
SFP 121: Minimalism + Parenthood [with Kristen Puzzo]
37:40

This is my favorite podcast episode yet. This month we are exploring the journey to simplicity in four real-life families. Because minimalism just makes good sense for families. Today I am chatting with Kristen Puzzo. Kristen is an active member of the Simple Families Community. I have been following her journey as she has been lightening the heavy …

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Aug 22, 2018
SFP 120: Trading my Job for Simplicity [with Lilly Neubauer]
37:22

Some people make big life changes in search of simplicity--Lilly Neubauer is one of them. When the busyness in her life spiraled out of control, Lilly quit her job to get her family back on track. I look forward to sharing her story with you today. Show Links: Trading my Job for Minimalism (Lilly's Guest …

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Aug 15, 2018
SFP 119: Living an Abundant Life with Less [with Rachelle Crawford]
39:43

We are launching off a new 4-part series:  Journey to Simplicity. I am interviewing four real families about moving towards minimalism and how it has impacted their lives.  Today I am chatting with Rachelle Crawford. Rachelle and her family of 5 live in Michigan. She felt a sudden call to minimalism 18 months ago and …

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Aug 08, 2018