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Don’t Gobble ‘Til You Wobble

In Lifestyle by Mary Trybuskiewicz

The goal during the holidays is to enjoy a warm, fun-filled celebration with family, but sometimes it morphs into a frantic fiasco. If you’re currently going through a separation or are recently divorced, you may be feeling extra stressed if your cooking traditions have changed or if your family dynamics are different from previous years. Here are a few dietary tips to counter the stress of holiday gatherings. My goal, as a Nutritionist, is to offer a few remedies to decrease some of the “food stress” involved in the celebration.   Let’s start with cooking. My rule is don’t make anything for the holidays that you haven’t made at least once already. This isn’t the time to try a new super dish because sometimes they turn into kitchen disasters, and …

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Adoption: Types, Thoughts and Considerations

In Parenting by Elizabeth Stephenson

Adopting one child won’t change the world: but for that child, the world will change. –Unknown Adoption has changed my life.  My son was adopted at birth and in one moment my life was forever changed.  I know how fortunate I am to have the resources and opportunity to have this precious baby come in to my life and change my focus from me… to we.  Unfortunately, thousands of children are still waiting for their forever home. Adoption takes many forms – from adopting a child in foster care, step-parent adoptions and consensual adoptions. Each year, November is recognized as National Adoption Awareness Month. While all adoption-related issues are important, the particular focus of this month is the adoption of children currently in foster care.  In North Carolina there are …

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All Treats, No Tricks: Tips for Co-Parenting this Halloween

In Child Custody by Sarah Hink

Halloween after divorce does not have to be scary, even if you are sharing custody of the children with your ex.  Sometimes your separation agreement or custody order may speak to how you are to split the fall holiday, either with the non-custodial parent getting a few hours that day or by alternating the holiday annually. However, many times Halloween is not addressed alongside the major holidays in ordinary custody arrangements, or perhaps you do not yet have a formalized custody agreement. Regardless, Halloween can still be happy and fun for both parents and child, and should be! Here are a few tips to help make co-parenting on Halloween a treat for everyone: Actively communicate As always, everyone’s case is different, but, if it is possible, both parents should be …

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Fight Like a Mother

In Health by Elizabeth Stephenson

As a girl growing up in the South, my momma always taught me not to fight, to act like a lady, always let a man open the door for you and don’t be afraid to cook with bacon grease. Cross my heart, she kept an old coffee can of bacon grease above the stove! But when it comes to breast cancer, she is my hero and also a survivor.  She taught me through her determination and her quiet resolve to “Fight Like a Mother” and because of that, she is still going strong and she is a breast cancer survivor. October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and pink is the signature color.  Like me, you’ve probably gotten lots of articles and blogs in your social media feeds about this life …

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October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month in Wake County

In Domestic Violence by Jennifer Bordeaux

Be InterActive this Fall Trees are sprinkled with rich hues of auburn, burnt orange and gold. Front porches begin to glow with iconic Halloween images, and children (and adults) are excited to dress up as their favorite super hero, TV character or movie star—you’ve realized it’s October. Now imagine for a minute that instead of planning for fun Fall activities, you live in daily fear of a controlling and abusive spouse or significant other. All you wish for is finding safety for you and your family, but you don’t know where to turn or who can help. But there is hope, safety and healing and it can be found at InterAct. InterAct is a private, non-profit agency that has been providing safety, support and awareness for victims and survivors of …

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How to Solve the Stress of the Single Parenting Equation

In Parenting by Elizabeth Stephenson

Which formula is easier to solve? A: (E/Fp)-(1-apT+pT2)/(E(Fpm)) or B: Finding the right formula to reduce the stress of being a single parent? Well that’s a no brainer …or is it? Did you know that one of every four American children live in a single-parent home?  That means if you’re a single parent, you’ve got lots of company and lots of experience with trial and error to help you find your single parent mojo. The circumstances may vary (some parents are divorced, others are widowed, and others are single parents by choice), but for many, the reality is that single parenting can be stressful, demanding, and hectic. If you are a single mom or dad, there are strategies to help reduce the stress in your life that can lead to …

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Band-Aids for Broken Hearts

In Separation & Divorce by Elizabeth Stephenson

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.”- Robert Frost Did you know that the Band-Aid was invented by Earle Dickenson on September 22, 1921? He got the idea for the bandage from his wife, who always cut her fingers in the kitchen when cooking.Good thing his solution wasn’t to hire a cook! Band aids can cure a lot of “boo boos,” especially those with the cool cartoon, superhero and princess characters on them. In fact, I still use those!  But, as we all know, even the strongest super hero can’t cure a broken heart. Can anything? As a family law attorney for over 16 years, I’m here to tell you YES! Why do our Hearts get Broken? There are so many reasons people don’t stay together: To fill a need in …

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We Interrupt this Marriage to Bring You Football Season

In Relationships by Sarah Hink

September begins with Labor Day weekend trips to the beach, cooler weather, and excitement for the new season as we say goodbye to Summer and hello to Fall.  For many, September is known best for the kick off of football season, a time for tailgates, comradery, and for some, marital stress. The hits to marriage are not only in the living rooms and parking lots of America, but also on the playing field. The reported divorce rate for players of the National Football League is somewhere between 60 and 80 percent. And while this number is higher than the more commonly known average of 50 percent, it is very comparable to other professional athletes. So is football to blame for thousands of American divorces each year?  Don’t throw the penalty …

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Grandparents Have Rights Too!

In Child Custody by Sarah Hink

Grandparents are special to children; they provide endless love, admiration, and cookies. Under North Carolina law, a grandparent includes a biological grandparent of a child, a step-grandparent when the stepparent has adopted the child, or a relative of the child where a substantial grandparent-like relationship exists between the relative and the child. When custody of a child is challenged, there is a presumption in North Carolina that the parent is favored over a third party for the award of custody. In fact, parents have a constitutionally protected right to the care, custody, and control of their children. As the US Supreme Court has said, “It is cardinal with us that the custody, care and nurture of the child reside first in the parents, whose primary function and freedom include preparation …

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“Labor Day”: A New Beginning or Growing Pains?

In Parenting by Elizabeth Stephenson

As we celebrate Labor Day and the end to summer, your family may be experiencing a new beginning – a new baby or what’s been called an “ours” baby. Having a new baby is generally a time of joy and celebration, but for blended families it can also bring new challenges.   Experts say that it generally takes between two and five years for a stepfamily to settle into their own unique routine and become a “blended” unit. During those years, everyone – including your children and your ex-spouses – are learning to navigate a whole new world. You and your new spouse are learning new routines and how to live with and love each other. If you and/or your new spouse have minor children, they are dealing with the …