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Prenuptial Agreements:  They’re Just for  Rich People, Right?

Prenuptial Agreements: They’re Just for Rich People, Right?

Prenuptial agreements have an image problem. We think they’re unromantic and, on that score, it’s hard to argue. However, other perceptions are not as accurate. Take these, for example: “A prenuptial agreement gets couples off to a rocky, unhealthy start.” “Prenuptial agreements usually involve one party taking advantage of the other. Prenups are almost always […]

Birds and Bees, Pretty Please! An Age-By-Age Guide to “The Talk”

Birds and Bees, Pretty Please! An Age-By-Age Guide to “The Talk”

If the thought of talking about sex with your kids makes you sweat bullets, you’re not alone. More than half of parents haven’t discussed sex with their preteen, according to research from the Kaiser Family Foundation. But, experts say, it’s not something you should skip. “If parents begin having age-appropriate, positive conversations with their child […]

The Emotional Side of Infertility

The Emotional Side of Infertility

I buried my face in my hands and wept. Another year had gone by and still no baby. After two rounds of in vitro fertilization, three cycles of Clomid, and five years of trying for a baby, all I had to show for my efforts were an aching heart and a stack of medical bills. […]

Vroom! Vroom! Helping Teens Get Their Own Set of Wheels

Vroom! Vroom! Helping Teens Get Their Own Set of Wheels

Everyone remembers their first car. Whether it was a hand-me-down beater or a shiny, new thing, those first teenage adventures behind the wheel of your very own car were a very big deal. Finally…you were alone, wind in your hair, music pumping, on the road to anywhere. Perhaps you saved your fast-food paychecks and birthday […]

Star Trek, Star Wars, and the Quest of Fatherhood

Star Trek, Star Wars, and the Quest of Fatherhood

An open letter to a friend and soon-to-be father… Dear Jared, We’ve become pretty good friends over the past year and a half working together at The Village. We’re kind of kindred souls in a way—two peas in a pod. We both have creative minds with a bit of a snarl when it comes to […]

Don't Bug Me: A mom who hates bugs learns to live with them ... sorta

Don’t Bug Me: A mom who hates bugs learns to live with them … sorta

I remember the afternoon when one of our girls, a toddler at the time, brought me a treasure from our yard, clutched in her chubby hand. Holding her fist up to my face, she opened it to reveal a balled-up, roly-poly bug. Instinctively I shrieked and knocked it from her hand. She looked up at […]

What's in a Name?

What’s in a Name?

By Gary Wolsky, President/CEO The Village Family Service Center Someone recently asked me where we came up with our name, “The Village Family Service Center.” That question prompted me to write this message to tell you about our name and take a comprehensive look at what The Village does. As you might expect over 124 […]

Creating a Lovely Morning

Creating a Lovely Morning

When I wake in the morning, my mind slowly gathers, and I begin to move, the early morning light just starting to seep in. I have a glass of water, start the coffee, then meditate. Then I enjoy the coffee, a good book, and the quiet, before the dust and din and steam of the […]

The History and Mystery of Popular Wishing Customs

As the Disney song from “Pinocchio” goes, “When you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.” While most people recognize wishes are not magically granted, the process is a wonderful way to identify the objects of your hopes and dreams. Here are a few ways, beyond wishing on that first glowing star of the […]

Be a More Playful Parent

Be a More Playful Parent

Parenting is serious business, and it can be overwhelming at times. It can also be a whole lot of fun if you find ways to sneak some play into your day. You don’t have to shirk grown-up responsibilities or make a fool of yourself (not that there’s anything wrong with that) to become a more […]

Growing Up Online: The Pros and Cons of Anonymous Social Media

Growing Up Online: The Pros and Cons of Anonymous Social Media

Keeping secrets is part of growing up. Deciding what you’ll tell people about yourself—and others—is one way children develop an understanding of privacy and trust. With Facebook and other forms of public social media, nothing is secret. Even young children now know that comments or photos become part of a person’s “permanent record.” And that’s […]

Breakfast In Bed

Breakfast In Bed

One of my fondest mom memories is of my 7-year-old daughter and her still toddling brother standing at the bedroom doorway with a half-spilled bowl of cereal balanced on a cookie sheet covered in dandelions. Their eyes were sparkling with pride as they delivered my surprise breakfast. It was as if they were presenting me […]

Engaged Couples Should Talk Before They Walk

A recent poll by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) revealed that 68 percent of respondents held negative attitudes toward discussing money with their fiancé, with five percent indicating the discussion would cause them to call off the wedding. “It is telling that two people who intend to spend the rest of their lives […]

Sick Day Challenge

Sick Day Challenge

Whether or not to send a self-reported sick child to school may be the most difficult decision in all of parentdom. We’re not talking about the puking, feverish, or spot-covered child. That’s an easy call. We’re talking about the kid who wakes in the morning without such tell-tale symptoms, but utters those most-loathed words, “I […]

The Preschool Inquisition

The Preschool Inquisition

I remember this phase—the age of endless questioning. Our middle child went through it right before he started kindergarten. Now his 4-year-old sister, Kate, has assumed the role of The Great Inquisitor. All day, every day, I answer questions. When I’m not around, she corners her dad and pummels him with rapid-fire queries that never […]

Some Things Change While Others Stay the Same

By Gary Wolsky, President/CEO The Village Family Service Center From time to time, at The Village, we make a conscious effort to look closely at the tens of thousands of interactions we have with clients every year, in an effort to discern the broader trends we are seeing. What is the trajectory related to the […]

Why Am I So Messy?! The Truth Behind Clutter and What You Can Do to Clean Up Your Act

Why Am I So Messy?! The Truth Behind Clutter and What You Can Do to Clean Up Your Act

Twelve years ago, Deb Williams was a completely different person. Living it up in a corporate job in Fargo, she was surrounded by piles of paperwork, mounds of mess, and a desk she could barely see. It made doing her job difficult. “My job required answering the phone and helping people locate information. Time after […]

Birthday Traditions from Around the World

Birthday Traditions from Around the World

Stethoscopes and microphones? Bubble-gum flavored cake? Overseas celebrations? Prayer rituals? These may sound like outrageous birthday ideas to you, but to children around the world, a birthday wouldn’t be a birthday without one of these traditions. The standard American child’s birthday party goes something like this: Host a party at your house/restaurant/events center; guests bring […]

Rethink Receiving a Tax Refund

Rethink Receiving a Tax Refund

The National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) online poll last February revealed that a strong majority of respondents intentionally plan to receive a federal income tax refund. “The findings suggest that receiving an income tax refund has become standard operating procedure for some people, as 2014 is the second year in a row that the […]

Winter’s Drafts Make Them Daft

Winter’s Drafts Make Them Daft

By J. Shane Mercer The weather in this part of the country is fantastic for the three months of the year when there isn’t snow on the ground. Still, that leaves about eight or nine months when the outdoors is less than inviting and getting kids outside is a challenge. As far as I’ve been […]