Category Archives: extended family

Grandparents Week

National Grandparents Day has been celebrated in the United States every year since 1978 on the first Sunday after Labor Day. It gives both grandchildren and grandparents an opportunity to reflect on the importance of each other. The statute establishing the holiday includes these words about the purpose of Grandparents Day: “…to honor grandparents, to give grandparents an opportunity to show love for their children’s children, and to help children become aware of strength, information, and guidance older people can offer.” Grandparents of babies revel in the thrill of new life … Continue reading

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Shared Joy

This year the last day of Chanukah falls on Christmas Eve, reminding us of the unique connection many inter-faith families share. And for those of us who observe only one of the holidays, it’s nice to see how our friends are enjoying their special parties. Getting together with family enhances the combination of fun, warmth, good food and beautiful decorations – whatever event you’re celebrating. And studies have shown that when families join together to practice their customs and rituals, there’s a positive effect on the children. They’re more likely … Continue reading

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Avoiding Holiday Family Meltdowns

With the holidays just around the corner – Chanukah begins next week, Christmas and Kwanzaa the week after – are you planning to spend some time celebrating with relatives? Now is the time to take a look at your family dynamics and plan ahead to avoid a meltdown during your get together. Often present-day arguments reflect childhood conflicts over power, competition or favoritism. In today’s environment, politics, too, can cause a serious disruption in family harmony. If your family has a history of dwelling on unfinished business or expressions of … Continue reading

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What We Can Learn from Japan about Respect

Looking over my pictures from a recent trip to Japan (click on photos to enlarge) got me thinking about this centuries-old culture. It’s a beautiful country with a certain set of characteristics that make it seem insular, cohesive and unique. There is a tight-knit social fabric, no immigration and the only spoken language is Japanese. With over 34 million people in Tokyo and the surrounding areas, it’s amazingly well organized. Trains and subways run exactly on time, like a Swiss clock. You don’t see any graffiti in common areas or … Continue reading

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