What would you do with an extra day?

I’m pretty psyched about Leap Day on Saturday. I’ve decided to start a new tradition where we treat it as a bonus day: no chores, no to-do list, just fun.   If the weather holds out, we are going to hike a trail we’ve started twice before, but had to abandon due to lack of time. We plan on spending all-day to go the 5 miles, so we can leisurely stop for lunch, play wherever it looks interesting, and make it through the full loop.  What would you do if you were given an extr

Five things

“What happened today?” gets total silence from my four-year-old, or his favorite line, “I can’t remember.” Here is a great hack to break the silent treatment—Five Things. Get your kids to tell you about Five Things about their days, except one of the things has to be NOT true. You then guess which was the ‘lie.’ You secretly get to learn about their day while making them laugh. Liven up your family dinner conversation. #momhacks #parentingtips #traditions

Weekly Emails to Kids

Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be sharing some “Dad hacks” from a Marc Picket, who is raising two young kids on his own. I love his approach and hope it can help us all see a different perspective. Maybe the bigger benefit of pomodoros is that they also help on getting me to do things that I might procrastinate. One example is every Tuesday morning, I set a pomodoro and write an email to my kids. Neither of my kids can read yet, but these are meant to be for them when t

Throw a regular event

My family and I just hosted our 4th kid’s NYE party. We have a balloon drop at 6:30pm, so the kids can all be home in bed by eight. The best part is that each year gets easier. You can recycle menus and invite, supply and todo lists. You learn what works and what doesn’t, so can iterate and simplify. And, you start building a community around it. So pick a regular event to throw. Here are some ideas to get the juices flowing: Game night with a few families Potluck picnic in a

A new tradition

This year, my kids and I created a new tradition. Leaving a bag of toys under the tree for Santa to give to other kids. Over the weekend, they went through their current toys and gathered up all the ones they didn’t want anymore. My house is decluttered and better yet, my kids are starting to associate the holiday with giving, not just their lists. If you don’t celebrate Christmas, a similar practice can be integrated into birthdays or other holidays. What simple ways do you

Create a Go Bag

I decided that I want to go camping with the kids most weekends. Being outside destresses me, and I’ve been making life-changing memories with the kids. The trick to doing this without stress was to make it incredibly easy. I store the camping gear in my trunk between sessions. That way, all I need to do is back a few clothes and some food for each adventure. I joke that it’s my version of a ‘go bag.’ What activity do you love doing (with your kids or not)? Can you make

Discover a New Culture in Your Own Backyard

I’m obsessed with travel and exploring new cultures, which is obviously much more difficult post-kids. My favorite things to do when I travel internationally are to check out grocery stores and local spas. I get so much insight into their culture by digging into daily life. This week I went on a mini-vacation. I drove the Korean suburb of DC, spent a few hours in the Korean spa, and had a long, leisurely visit to H-Mart (a Korean grocery). I came home with tons of fun

Yes, My Kids Ate Bugs

A big goal of mine is to create memories for my kids. I want them to have adventures, laughs, and new experiences—both big and small. Memories don't have to be hard or involved. For example, on my last business trip (to Mexico), I just brought home some crazy food, like crickets, that I encountered. This led to a hilarious bug tasting and so many laughs—watch below. It literally took me 30-seconds to grab and wrap up the critters. Creating memories makes our limited ti

How to be a Super Mom on a Weekday Valentine's Day

I'm a huge fan of traditions, especially ones that I can eek out on a busy weekday. Here are three food tricks you can do this week to bring a little festivities into your meals: Order a heart shaped pizza. Every pizza place will make you this for free if you ask. Cut anything into a heart shape. Sandwiches, toast, cucumbers, melon. Literally anything. You can do this by hand or there is still time to order a cookie cutter from Amazon. Make pink milk for their cereal. Who

The Modern Mom's Baby Book

My favorite Google ad is Dear Sophie, the touching story of parents who documented their daughter's life by sending her emails to Gmail. If you haven't seen it, prepare for a few tears. Alexis Jhamb—who has the coolest title, GM of Decision Making at Chevron—did something similar. She made an email address for her son, sending him 'letters' about what he's doing and how she feels about him. "It's like a 1-way private conversation with our son. I discovered that when my father

Take a Family Walk

Joe signed us up for life insurance that gets cheaper the more healthy habits we do. We're suckers for gamification and have become obsessed with getting in our steps. So, we've started going on post-dinner family walks. I cannot tell you the amount of joy this simple act gives me. It forces us to put away our phones. Helps us connect with our neighbors that we bump into along the way. And, provides us with a chance to appreciate the little things. It's fun seeing bunnies or