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Sibling Rivalry in a Special Needs Family

Is there room for sibling rivalry when your sibling has special needs? It’s a question I ask myself as I raise a neurotypical seven year old girl and her five year old autistic little sister. For the moment, the relationship seems to be ideal between our two daughters. Except for some minor issues surrounding sharing preferred items, our girls get along very well. Better than well, even--at times, it can be suspiciously sweet. Our girls do not compete for our attention and they very rarely fight. Could this be one of the perks of being a special needs family? Our littlest girl, Kate, receives a boat-load of attention with her daily therapies and appointments and not least of all her attention-demanding behaviors. And yes, our eldest sits patiently for the most part, waiting for her turn, waiting for her chance. It could break your heart to see her waiting there; watching her sister's needs come first. She watches her parents exhaust themselves trying to manage her sister and she happily takes what we have left at the end of the day. My heart could burst as I write this because I love that little girl so much and it could shatter at the thought that she might feel, even a little, left out.
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Posted in Parents

How to Access Your Credit Reports for Free

I’m sure you’ve heard time and time again how important it is to check your credit report regularly. Doing so can enable you to request that errors be corrected in a timely manner and can provide you with an early indication if you have become a victim of identity theft. It can also make it easy to see areas in which your financial wellness can use some adjusting. Do not wait until you are applying for a mortgage or for credit to find out that your credit report isn't presenting you in a positive light. Straightening out errors and rectifying past-due debts can take months and may cost you the opportunity to buy a home or make a large purchase. It is best to be prepared so that everything is as it should be when you need it to be. Best of all, accessing your credit report once a year won’t cost you a thing. Are Credit Reports Really Free? In 1970, the U.S. Congress passed the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) as an amendment to the Consumer Credit Protection Act of 1968. The FCRA states that you're entitled to receive a free copy of your credit report annually from each of the three nationally recognized reporting companies. These companies are Equifax®, Experian® and TransUnion®.
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Children's Books You Need to Own

If you're like me, you are always looking for something great to read with your little ones. Here are my top recommendations: Good Night, Good Night Construction Site by Sherri Duskey Rinker Kids, and kids at heart, are enamored with big machines. Well, many kids, anyway. It wasn’t really my thing, but when I see a book I know my husband will happily read to the kids I grab it. And then to find out, that it is really great too--bonus. I love this little book and you will too. How to Catch a Star by Oilver Jeffers I adore this book, and its author, so much that I have painted a mural of its cover in my classroom. I simply cannot get enough of the whimsical illustrations. He wrote this one and this one, too, and of course they should also be in your library. I’ve already inquired about owning an Oliver Jeffers print for my home but, at the moment, it’s not in the budget.
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Posted in Parents

Why Every New Entrepreneur Needs a Mentor

n the world of entrepreneurship, mentors are an underrated and underutilized resource. There are thousands of experienced professionals looking to help up-and-comers with their own new projects, but for one reason or another, new entrepreneurs are reluctant to pursue a mentor-mentee relationship. The benefits of getting a mentor are practically limitless, especially during the initial development and launch of your business, and if you’re new to being an entrepreneur, I would argue that the guidance you receive from a potential mentor is downright essential.
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