1. A Parent’s Guide to Doctors & Pediatricians

    Showing up with your 15-year-old to a pediatrician’s office can be an awkward experience. A waiting room full of toddler’s toys and Sesame Street posters won’t exactly make your teen feel like they have come to the right place. As a result, many parents wonder when it’s time for their child to stop seeing the pediatrician and start seeing a doctor that handles adult patients.

    Ultimately the choice is up to you and your kids, but many parents make the change from pediatrician to adult physician at age around 13. Around that age, an adolescent begins to have questions about sexual health, hormones, and other issues they may not want to discuss with the doctor they have been seeing since early childhood. Even if you don’t switch doctors, you should make sure to give your child some alone time with their doctor at around this age so they can ask certain questions they may not feel comfortable asking around you.

    There are some benefits with sticking with a pediatrician through age 18. If your child has a chronic condition your pediatrician has been working on, it may take time an effort to catch up a new doctor. If your child and doctor have good rapport, you may not need to switch.

    For an in-between fix, check out whether there’s an adolescent medicine specialist in your area: Google “adolescent doctor” or “young adult doctor” plus your city or town. These doctors are great for high school age kids, and can provide a stopgap between a pediatrician and an adult doctor.

    A lot of kids make the switch to a new doctor at age 18 when they go to college. Having a doctor near where they go to school has a lot of practical advantages, and age 18 is a good time for soon-to-be-adults to start making their own medical choices.  

    There are no hard and fast rules when it comes to making the switch from pediatrician to young adult doctor or adult doctor. What is convenient for your family and who your child feels most comfortable with should influence the choice the most. Make sure to keep your child involved in the discussion – after all, they’re the patient! 

     

  2. Boys Swimsuits for Under $15

    Whether he’ll be hitting the beach, the pool, or the lake at summer camp, he’ll need a good pair of swim trunks. Check out some of our favorites. They may be highly varied, but they all have one thing in common: they’re under $15!

    Now he can take his love of superheroes with him to the beach with these Justice League trunks. Evildoers don’t stand a chance!

    These Carter’s Watch the Wear boardshorts are equally at home swimming the sea or strolling the boardwalk. They’re stylish enough to be part of his summer wardrobe for non-aquatic fun!

    Quad Seven sticks to the basics in the best possible way with these trunks. $5.99? Wow. 

    Who knew sharks could be so cute? This adorable pair of iXtreme boardshorts offers UV protection – a useful feature for those extra sunny days. 

     

  3. Child Identity Theft

    Just when you thought the world of cybercrime couldn’t get any scarier, this alarming trend rears its head. Children are increasingly being targeted by cybercriminals. What is behind this trend, and how do you protect your children from becoming the victims of identity theft?

    In many ways, kids are the perfect target for identity thieves. Their social security numbers and credit files are completely pristine, and these blank slates are exactly what cyber criminals need to take out fraudulent loans and credit cards. These scams can go undetected for a long while because it doesn’t occur to parents to check their kids’ credit ratings.

    There are certain red flags of which you should be aware. If you suddenly get an influx of credit card or loan offers addressed to your child, there is likely a problem. Collections calls, IRS notices, and bills addressed to your little one are all signs that someone is maliciously using your child’s social security number.

    If you suspect something is amiss, you’ll need to check your child’s credit score. This is a bit more involved than checking your personal credit score, as you’ll need to provide your child’s information plus information proving that you are the child’s guardian. Use a variety of companies (many are free) to run several credit checks; different companies draw on different databases, so using just one won’t necessarily unearth fraud.

    A blank credit file means there is no credit activity related to your child’s SSN – if you come across that, consider yourself in the clear. If there is illegal activity, you can freeze your child’s credit, which will prevent any further damage. Make sure to also file a police report and gather as much documentation as you can. This will make it easier to restore your child’s credit, and may help catch the cybercriminal. Some states even allow you to create a credit report for your child and freeze it as a preventative measure.

    When it comes to preventing identity theft, you need to be as careful with your children’s information as you are with your own. Protect their SSNs and personal data, especially online, and if you think something might be amiss, don’t hesitate to take the steps outlined here. 

     

  4. What to Wear for Graduation

    Graduation season is here, and all the ceremonies and celebrations are an opportunity for kids of all ages to look their best. Whether your child is attending a graduation ceremony for a big brother or sister, or graduating themselves, now is the time to give some consideration to what they’ll wear.

    Before you jump into shopping, look through the information provided by your son or daughter’s school. Is there a graduation dress code? What is the policy on jewelry? Makeup? What do you think people in the audience will wear? Also take note of where the graduation takes place. Is the ceremony outdoors? How hot will it be? Chance of rain?

    Once you know a bit more about the ceremony you can start shopping. Suits for boys and party dresses for girls is standard graduation wear. If wearing a robe, kids only have to look dressy from the shins down: boys can wear their dress shoes and slacks with a T so they stay cool and comfortable during the ceremony; girls can wear dressy shoes with leggings or tights. After the ceremony ends and you snap some pics of the graduates in their robes, they can change into their full outfits.

    Make sure your graduate or attendee wears comfortable shoes (especially for girls who sometimes choose fashion over function). They’ll be wearing these shoes through the graduation ceremony, the celebratory meal afterwards, and graduation parties. You want them to be comfortable!

    What about choosing the actual dress or suit? If you’re picking out a first suit for your little guy, try to go for something versatile – could he wear it to a fancy dinner? A family wedding? Will your 8th grade girl’s graduation dress work as a prom dress in a few years? You know best about your child’s future plans, so choose dresswear that might work well for upcoming events.

    Once you and your child choose an appropriate graduation outfit, you can sit back and enjoy the event. Snap lots of pictures and take a moment to pat your child and yourself on the back for all your hard work. And don’t forget to thank their teachers, too. Happy graduation! 

     

  5. Dresses with a Little Extra Something

    When the sun is out, no one wants to spend too much time indoors mixing and matching outfits and accessories. Pre-accessorized dresses offer a cute and convenient way to craft a complete look. Plus, it’s like getting a free gift!

    Check out some of our favorite accessory-loaded dresses:

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    The skinny belt included with this Dream Star dress further cinches the already slimming shape. The belt is also removable, so she can add it to other outfits. 

    This unique dress from Chillipop has a modern attitude and a sense of humor. The stripes and bright colors are eye-catching, while the mustache necklace is just plain fun!

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    The light and airy chiffon of this One Step Up dress gets anchored by the more rugged denim vest. The vest can add a bit of edge to any summer ensemble.

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    The shrug lends extra elegance to this floral dress from My Michelle. It’s also perfect for those cooler summer nights. 

     

  6. Brand Alert: Trukfit

    Trukfit brand is as eclectic as its famed creator, Lil’ Wayne. In just the past five years, Wayne has created chart topping rock and rap albums, taken a hiatus from music to learn to skateboard, and founded a charity – all while discovering and managing other chart-toppers like Drake and Nicki Minaj. Did I mention he also founded Trukfit clothing?

    Trukfit tops seamlessly blend skate style with street style. Check out some of our favorites:

    A Keith Haring-inspired graphic is not what you would expect to find on a skater T, but this piece defies expectations and pulls it off.

    This tank combines hand-drawn detailing with a pop of color to create something with attitude and a touch of class.

    Get to know the Trukfit gang with this colorful T. The 4-panel graphic sports vibrant colors to match the crazy characters.

    The spray paint drip logo on this tank pays respect to Trukfit’s street art roots. The print features the Trukfit crew’s various members.

     

  7. Negotiating with Kids

    When kids reach age 5 they enter what some parents call the “little lawyer” phase. Everything becomes a negotiation. They want just 15 more minutes of play before bed, or they outright refuse to eat certain foods. Parents often find themselves frustrated at the fact that every situation becomes a prolonged standoff. And it can be difficult to know when to put your foot down, when you should negotiate, and when to let your child ‘win’ the argument. Here are some tips for dealing with the little lawyer of your family.

    Softening an ultimatum with choices is a good way to avoid a fight or a more drawn-out negotiation. Instead of saying “Go clean your room!” try “What part of your room do you want to clean first?” or “What music do you want to put on while you clean your room?” Simply building some choice into your command can be enough to satisfy that budding need for independence.

    Take advantage or your child’s newly developing empathy when negotiating. If they refuse to eat the vegetables you cooked, turn the tables on them. Ask, “What would you do if you were in my shoes?” or “How do you think I feel when you don’t eat the food I worked hard cooking for you?” This is precisely the kind of thinking you want to encourage in your child, and can often lead to a truce both sides can accept.

    However, you’ll have a hard time negotiating with your child if they don’t understand that you mean business. Let them assert their autonomy, but draw a clear line in the sand as to when you’re engaging in a negotiation and when you’re issuing a command. Giving your child some leeway to exercise choice and negotiation in certain cases will make a command that much more meaningful.

    Don’t forget to have some fun with negotiations. If your child wants 15 minutes more playtime tonight, let him or her plead their case. You may be surprised how convincing they can be!

     

  8. Swimwear for Under $15

    Summer wouldn’t be complete without a trip to the beach or the pool to cool off.  You want your kids to have the best, but why waste money on a bathing suit that will only be worn for 1 or 2 summers before being outgrown? 

    Lucky for you, we offer stylish swimwear that won’t break the bank. Browse our selection of affordable bathing suits, or check out some of our favorites below.

    This Breaking Waves swimsuit improves on the basic 1-piece design with a memorable off-the-shoulder cut and a bright pattern.

    A tankini is good balance between the freedom of a bikini and the coverage of 1-piece. This one from Pink Platinum sports a tropical print that’s perfect for a beachgoing adventure!

    A surf-inspired graphic gives this St. Tropez bikini a lot of attitude. Ooh la la!   

    A great deal on one of the world’s most trusted seafaring brands? Look no further than this Nautica bikini – just $9.99!

     

  9. Tattle Battle!

    Is tattling a problem for your child? Do they tattle too much, or are they hesitant to share important problems for fear of being labeled a tattletale? As a parent, how do you keep tattling in check?

    Kids begin to tattle between ages 5 – 10. Many kids tattle because they’re testing out a newfound sense of wrong and right, which is ultimately an important part of their development. But they need your guidance to understand how to respond to certain kinds of wrongdoing.

    Playacting can be helpful here. Describe situations, like witnessing bullying or littering, then let your child decide whether they should alert an adult, intervene themselves, or just ignore the behavior. Make sure they’re aware of certain things they should always tell an adult.

    For some kids, tattling is a way to vent frustrations. They may not want you to do anything other than hear them out. In these cases, all you need to do is offer a sympathetic ear. Validate their feelings of anger towards a person or behavior. Let them know that even adults need to gripe sometimes.

    Don’t validate tattling, though. When kids tattle, you don’t want to reward them, but you also don’t want to scold them, punish them, or make them feel as if their concerns are being brushed aside. As a solution, don’t praise them for actually tattling. Instead, try praising them for being attentive. If you find they’re REALLY attentive, assign them something else to observe and relay to you. Ask them to look for 3 examples of kindness to report. Sure beats hearing about yet another playground name-calling incident.

    If you find the tattling habit persistent and hard to break, it may be tied to insecurity. Kids who feel unable to control their surroundings will sometimes engage in constant tattling because it makes them feel more powerful. This bad habit won’t exactly endear them to their peers or build their confidence. When they come to you to tattle, offer support and advice but resist the urge to get actively involved. Give praise when they are able deal with an issue on their own.   

     

  10. Summery Sundresses

    Combining breezy comfort and bold style, sundresses are the hot item for summer. The slinky cut, clingy fit, and bright prints make them an easy and comfortable choice no matter how high the temperature climbs. They’re ideal for wearing over a swimsuit, or dressing up with a cute pair of flats and accessories. With so many selections for under $15, the only hard part is choosing!

    Check out some of our favorites:

    The colorful polka dots on this Just Love dress spread smiles like wildfire. Elastic shirring at the top makes the cut extra flattering.

    A higher hem and artful print makes this Hello Gorgeous dress a real standout. How cute would it look with a pair of boat shoes and a tote bag?

    This Pogo Club dress comes packed with fun accents and accessories. It’s equally at home on the beach or at a casual evening soiree.

    This slinky number from Chillipop serves up classic chic! The fabric is light, the print is bright, and the cut flows in the summer breeze.