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Not Cinderella's Stepmom

with Samantha

I'm a dreamer, writer and actor obsessed with classic television, lace, baking and quoting Ace Ventura (one of these things is not like the other). I like to believe that my life is just like a Disney movie with an Alan Menken soundtrack except the stepmom's not so evil. When I married my husband, David, in October of 2012, I fell madly, deeply in love with my two stepchildren, Chloe and Trey. It's incredibly hard to balance being a stepmom every other weekend with the rest of my life, but it is 100% worth it. You can find more stories about my family at my personal blog, fairytangles!

Why My Family Loves Thanksgiving: My Holiday Traditions

Categories: activities, children, thanksgiving

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Thanksgiving is only a week away (I KNOW) and my husband and I have been busy thinking of new family traditions we want to have with my stepchildren this year. We think this holiday gets overlooked by all of the anticipation of Christmas and we want to remind Chloe and Trey how wonderful Thanksgiving truly is. If you’re in the same boat, try out a few of the traditions we thought up and see if they put you and your family into a gobble gobble mood!

Watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

This one is a total no-brainer, I know, but we always seem to forget until the parade is halfway over! Last year, we remembered, and while the smells of Thanksgiving were wafting out of the kitchen, we had two kids eating their cereal in the living room, FREAKING OUT over every single character they recognized. Plus, I’m a suck for Macy’s AND a sucker for a parade, so this is basically like another Christmas morning. It’s such a fun, happy way to start off your Thanksgiving and is steeped in so much history, it’s hard not to love!
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Too Much Turkey: How To Avoid An Overwhelming Thanksgiving Schedule

Categories: flexibility, holidays, parenting, scheduling, thanksgiving

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I’ve talked about how tough scheduling holidays can be with stepchildren before, but as we enter the full holiday swing, I thought I’d share some of our tips for balancing all of the Thanksgiving meals we’re sure to attend!

Here’s the first thing you need to remember about the holidays: Everyone wants to see your kids. Bottom line, especially when you’re a blended family. My husband and I have my stepchildren with us every other weekend, so it’s rare that they get good, quality family time with their grandparents, aunts, uncles, etc. It happens maybe once a month and, unfortunately, that’s just how it goes with stepfamilies. But during the holidays, it’s pretty much a given that everyone wants to see the kids. Cousins need playmates and Grandma needs to hound everyone about what they want for Christmas, right?
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Teaching Our Kids to Be Thankful

Categories: children, parenting, stepmom, thanksgiving

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This past weekend, my husband and I were eating lunch with my two stepchildren when Chloe, our seven-year-old, asked to eat what Daddy was eating.

Background: She was on her third bowl of macaroni and cheese.

“No, Chloe,” I told her. “You’ve had enough macaroni, you don’t need anything else.”

“Aw, man,” she pouted, and took a sip of her milk.

“Hey, you should be thankful, baby,” my husband said. “There are too many kids out there who don’t get anything to eat.”

And so started one of the most important conversations we’ve ever had with Chloe.

Immediately, she burst into tears because she thought she was in trouble. When we cleared that up, David and I took the next twenty minutes to explain to her just how lucky she was. We talked about basic provisions and how our family has more than what we need. We talked about Mommies and Daddies who have to watch their babies go hungry because they don’t have any money to go to the grocery store.

After a few minutes of talking, Chloe asked me why I looked like I was about to cry.
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