this family life

this family life

Australia

Hosted by Nicole Avery of PlanningWithKids.com, this family life gives everyday parents a chance to share their hard-fought wisdom. These aren’t bloggers or authors or even people with a big Instagram following. Instead, they’re everyday parents with practical, insightful, honest advice to share. Nic interviews parents who work full-time, mums on maternity leave, those whose children have special needs and parents with kids of all ages, and uncovers how they organise the chaos of their daily family life.

Episodes

11: on working as a team with your partner  

Well this is a super fun interview, with Nic chatting to her lovely husband Phil! 

To end season 1 of this family life, Nic wanted to provide a male perspective on family life, from someone she knew to be involved and actively contributing to organising and planning for their family. She didn’t have to look far as over the years she and Phil have worked hard to ensure they work together as a team to keep family life organised and harmonious as possible.

Nic learnt a little more about herself and Phil as he talked, as some of his answers were a little surprising!

Phil shares his side of things on how their family works and some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up:

Tips on getting more hands on as a dad Managing weekend sporting activities with multiple kids Why he now enjoys (for short spells) the opportunity to parent on his own when Nic travels for work Making time to spend on activities outside the home Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Book Review – Yes, Your Teen is Crazy!: Loving Your Kid Without Losing Your Mind Role Reversal Experience – Mr Infrastructure

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10: on relocating and recovering  

Today’s guest is a woman I find incredibly inspiring. Suzy lives in Melbourne with her husband and three primary school aged children. Suzy and her family relocated from Ireland in 2011 and all was going tremendously well when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2013. I have the pleasure of knowing Suzy and as you will hear in the interview she has an amazingly positive energy and outlook on life.

Suzy shares honestly and with pragmatism about her experiences and some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up:

Tips on getting involved in new school communities Managing a family while undergoing breast cancer treatment Organising meals when you work part time outside of the home Prioritising time to spend with your family Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Making It Easier – School Lunch Box Process PWK weekly food prep Other useful links: 127 hours by Aron Rolston – this book made Suzy think about how fragile life is, how you need to appreciate those you love and the importance of family.

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09: on enjoying parenting and working  

In this interview Nic chats with Sophie who works part time, some of which is from home. Sophie has a senior role in a government organisation and while it has its challenges she enjoys both her work and family life. She lives in Melbourne with her partner and two daughters.

Sophie shares what it is like to work part time when you have young kids and some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from this episode are:

Tips on setting up work hours when working part time Planning and preparing for organised mornings Accepting stages in life like broken sleep Finding time to recharge Blog posts mentioned in the episode: How to use Evernote to reduce paper clutter in the home Making It Easier – School Lunch Box Process Role modelling the behaviour you want in your kids Other useful information and links: Children are People Too The Highly Sensitive Child Fridge to go

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08: on parenting a child with a learning difference  

This episode features Anne who lives in Melbourne with her husband and two children; a daughter aged 6 and son aged 11. Anne’s son was diagnosed in 2014 with print disability dyslexia and she is very proactive in supporting his education the best she can. Anne also runs own business from home as a copywriter and content creator.

Anne shares openly about her family experience and some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from this episode are:

How to be an advocate for your child who has a learning difference Managing homework help with both children The benefits and challenges form working from home Making the change from being a night owl to an early riser Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Children’s Routines The Planning with Kids Book Baby Love – Robin Barker Other useful information and links:

Thanks so much to Anne for sending through the following information.

Dyslexia is not a disease! The word dyslexia comes from the Greek language and means difficulty with words. Individuals with dyslexia have trouble with reading and spelling despite having the ability to learn. Individuals with dyslexia can learn, they just learn in a different way. Often these individuals, who have talented and productive minds, are said to have a language learning difference.

A student with dyslexia will have a particular difficulty with single word reading (decoding).The central difficulty for a student with dyslexia is to convert letter symbols to their correct sound (decode) and convert sounds to their correct written symbol(spell).

If you have any concerns about the way your child is learning, spelling or reading, don’t wait for the teacher to tell you what to do. Sadly most of our teachers are NOT trained to recognise learning differences such as dyslexia. If you suspect your child has a learning difference, if you feel in your gut that something isn’t right, don’t ‘wait and see’. In the dyslexia community this is known as ‘wait and fail.’ Speak to the teacher, but look elsewhere for advice if you feel you need it. If your child has a learning difference, your school has a duty of care to support your child and accommodations can be provided. A recognised learning difference such as dyslexia means your child needs an Individual Learning and Improvement Plan. Don’t spend money for a solution/program/assessment that is not evidence-based. Do lots of homework and ask lots of questions first. Find your child’s strengths and concentrate on this. Your child is working hard on so many other things, they need to feel as successful as possible in the areas of life in which they excel.

There is a lot of advice and support out there – in fact it can be overwhelming. I recommend organisations such as ADA and SPELD. There are also national and state based Facebook groups that are a great source of information.

dyslexiaassociation.org.au auspeld.org.au

On Facebook search for:

Dyslexia Support Australia Dyslexia Victoria Support Group

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07:  on single parenting  

This episode features Catherine who lives in Melbourne with her two children; a daughter aged 10 and son aged 12. Catherine is a single parent who works full time outside of the home in a senior role.

Catherine shares openly about the realities of single parenting and some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from this episode are:

Managing the logistics of the kids sharing their time at both parent’s houses Being prepared to be overwhelmed at times Transitioning from primary school to secondary school The importance of having your own solid friendship group Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Getting ready for year 7 7 tips for first time year 7 parents 10 Things I Have Learnt About Year 7 And Year 7 Boys This Year Monthly review – embracing the undone Other useful links: You Are Your Child’s First Teacher – Rahima Baldwin Dancy

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06: on loving your work and family life  

In this episode I chat with Claire who lives in Melbourne with her husband and 2 boys who are aged almost 3 and almost 6. Both Claire and her husband work full time and travel for work, so sorting logistics in their house is super important and they do it very well.

Claire has a great outlook on managing her career and her family, some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up:

Setting up a family planner system Enjoying your work and pursuing your career Undertaking preparation during the weekend for the coming week Not being too hard on yourself as a parent Blog posts mentioned in the episode: 5 simple family organisation tools PWK weekly food prep Other useful links: Personalised paper planners

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05: on finding the right part time mix  

In this week’s episode I am super proud to be able to introduce you to my sister Steph. Steph is married with two boys aged four and one and she works part time outside of the home. While I am older than her and have five kids, I still learn from her organisational skills!

Steph has so much great stuff to share and here are some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up:

Choosing part time days to work best for you and your family Managing meal times with little ones while working How to capture photos and stories of your kids The importance of managing your own expectations as a parent Blog posts mentioned in the episode: 5 simple family organisation tools PWK weekly food prep Other useful links: Save our sleep – Tizzy Hall – this book made Steph realise she needed to trust her own parenting skills. Just because this book was recommend to her and has sold lots of copies, didn’t mean she had to follow it – it just didn’t feel right for her. Using a slow cooker – and this book for the teenager stage of parenting which, I also highly recommend.

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04: on teenagers and special needs  

In the latest epsiode of the this family life I chat with Merridy who lives Hong Kong with her husband and four children aged 15, 12 and 11 year old twins. Her youngest son Thomas has cerebral palsy. He is a twin to Sophie and when they were born sadly he suffered a hypoxic event which resulted in brain damage. When he was around 18 months old he received the official diagnosis of CP: Level 5. Tom uses a wheelchair and an eye gaze device for all of his communication and schooling. He attends main stream school along with his sister Sophie. Merridy’s husband is a Boeing 777 commercial airline captain and travels constantly for his work, a bonus of which means plenty of opportunities for them to travel as a family.

With such a family set up, Merridy has much to share and just some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up:

The importance of friends in an ex-pat community Managing homework and technology with kids Tips for travelling with children with special needs Apartment living with kids Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Letting go How to create a weekly schedule Children’s Routines Other useful links: On Becoming Babywise – Gary Ezzo, Robert Bucknam – for the baby stage of parenting Merridy recommended this book. Yes, Your Teen is Crazy!: Loving Your Kid Without Losing Your Mind – and this book for the teenager stage of parenting which, I also highly recommend. Project 333 – for reducing your number of clothes

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03: on setting up in a new town  

In episode 3 of the this family life I chat with Lulu who lives in Perth, Western Australia. Lulu moved to Perth just over 6 years ago, when she was pregnant with her second child and a toddler in tow. Lulu knew and was on the other side of the country to where her family lived. Now, she has an amazing friends whom she sees almost daily and counts as her extended family.

In the episode, some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from Lulu are:

How to make friends when you move to a new town The benefits from being involved with the kids schools How to manage the workload that comes from being on committees Why she takes time out to look after herself. Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Why tracking your habits works Managing Technology With Kids Preschool Morning Routine Other useful links: Better than before – Gretchen Ruben – Lulu recommended this book and I also highly recommend it, particularly if you are struggling to create new habits or break old ones.

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02: on separating and rebuilding  

Episode 2 of the this family life podcast was such a joy to me. It is with my dear friend Bron. We met when our eldest boys attended a Montessori kindergarten together. While we don’t see each other anywhere near as much as we should, we always have so much to say and share. Our time together never seems long enough.

Bron shares so much valuable wisdom in this episode. Bron has two children now a son 17 and a daughter 13. When they were nine and five years old, Bron separated from their father. The relationship break up was sudden and unexpected. Her life from this point took a very different path than she had ever envisaged.

In the episode, some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from Bron are:

The practicalities required and the emotional impact of shared custody The importance of listening to our kids Tips on approaching homework with teenagers Why we shouldn’t worry quite so much as we do Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Did it really matter? Feedback from the kids Allowing space for growth Other useful links: Children are People Too- Louise Porter is a book Bron highly recommended and I highly recommend too for all parents with young kids. I have written about it a number of times on the blog and you can find a broad overview here. Porter has a great PDF you can download freely from her website on Guiding Children’s Behaviour.

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01: on maternity leave  

In the first episode of this family life, I talk to Judy, who has two boys, one who is almost four years old and their second child will turn one in April. Judy is currently on maternity leave and lives with her husband and kids in Griffith NSW, a small inland city of roughly 25,000.

In the episode, some highlights of the wisdom you will pick up from Judy are:

Tips on planning and preparing meals with young ones Managing meal time with young ones Sharing the household workload Planning for maternity leave

The this family life is part of the new Jackrabbit.fm network and I want to give a huge shout out of thanks to Brooke. After recording the podcasts, Brooke and the team at Jackrabbit work their magic so it is all ready for you to listen to.

Blog posts mentioned in the episode: Why am I always rushing Does It Really Get Harder????? Using a slow cooker Other useful links: Book – Baby love by Robin Barker

Don’t forget to say hello on social media by using the hashtag #thisfamilylifepod

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Welcome to this family life!  

Episode 0 provides a brief intro to what this family life is all about, which is parents sharing the wisdom they have learnt on their parenting journey.

In this introductory episode, Nicole Avery shares some pieces of wisdom she has learnt from other parents that have helped make her life easier.

With five kids aged 17 to 7 Nicole has certainly accumulated some wisdom over the years that she shares on one of Australia's most popular parenting blogs, planningwithkids.com. But her focus in this series is learning from other parents and the tips and tricks they have used to organise the chaos of family life.

Links:

http://planningwithkids.com/
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