Author: Cheryl Butler

Cheryl L. Butler is the mother of eight children. Her experiences with infertility, adoption, seven pregnancies, and raising children with developmental delays have helped her become a resource on the joys and challenges of parenting. Call the Mighty Mommy listener line at 401-284-7575 to ask a parenting question. Your call could be featured on the show!

At some point, our kids begin to test the waters with “little white lies” and other sneaky, manipulative maneuvers. Sneaky behavior can be disheartening and troublesome to any parent, but it can also perpetuate and grow into more serious problems if it’s not nipped in the bud. Kids who engage in sneaky behavior usually have a reason. Your teen may try to test boundaries—like fudging the actual time they returned home for curfew—to see how much control they actually have over their own lives. Or your preschooler may casually slide a few cookies in his pocket before dinner because he…

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The mother-daughter connection is like none other. It’s an intense, special bond that is instrumental in the lives of both. Sadly, it can also be complex, challenging, and even toxic. A dysfunctional mother-daughter relationship can adversely affect both parties for the rest of their lives. If you’re struggling to reap a fulfilling bond with your daughter, here are some loving ways to connect and stay strong. Remember to have a great relationship with yourself When you’re trying to improve your connection with other people, it’s easy to focus on the negative behaviors and habits of the person you seek to…

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When one of my kid’s goes out of their way to tell me how great I look, particularly when I’m feeling harried, I cautiously embrace the compliment. I know I’m not having a great hair day, and I’ve worn my vintage denim jacket dozens (probably hundreds) of times, so it’s not like I’m rocking an awesome new outfit they’ve never seen. Hmm, what’s up? Do I seriously look amazing? (Every busy mom hopes so!) Or could this compliment be a ploy to cover an underlying motive like wanting the go-ahead to break curfew or to soften the news of a…

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Remember that sweet, miraculous smell you inhaled when you held your precious newborn for the first time? Hang on to that fragrant reminder and bottle it in your memories because when your kid enters the “teen zone,” all bets are off. They will likely smell more like a farm animal than that bundle of cuteness you cuddled all those years ago. The human body is amazing in so many ways. It's the vehicle through which we're allowed to experience so many wonderful journeys. When we take care of it, though not guaranteed, we have a pretty great chance of enjoying…

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There are so many things in life that are beyond a child’s control. That’s why kids depend on their parents or caregivers to keep them safe and secure, both physically and emotionally. Sadly, some parents struggle with damaging behavior known as toxic parenting, which can have long-lasting, damaging effects. Toxic means poisonous, harmful, contaminated. A toxic parent is someone whose negative, poisonous behavior causes harmful emotional damage. And that damage can contaminate a child’s sense of self. As parents, we set the tone for our kids. When we’re upbeat and positive, it has a ripple effect on the rest of the…

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I’ll never forget the first field trip I chaperoned for my oldest daughter, now 24 years old. Her Kindergarten class went to a local farm to have a hayride to the pumpkin patch. I was so excited to be a part of it, especially when she called me over to meet some of her friends. We left happy and sticky from the farm fresh apple cider along with two big, beautiful pumpkins. The car ride home was full of conversation about the day when all of a sudden she began to giggle and asked me how I liked her friend…

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You don't need a special holiday to show your family love. Sure, it's great to fuss on special occasions by going all out with confectionary delights, greeting cards, parties, and the like … but love is for the ordinary times, too. Here are fifteen simple ways to show your family love all year 'round! Admit when you are wrong. It’s important for family members, especially your kids, to know you're OK with owning your mistakes. Not only that, showing them that it's important to acknowledge when you mess up, and then make an effort to make things right, is a…

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The teen in your life may leave you continuously scratching your head. She’s capable of shifting from super-happy to out-of-control crankiness faster than a NASCAR driver changes lanes. The most frustrating part for parents is that these mood swings seem to come out of nowhere. I know—I’ve already raised six teens, and I have two more to go. When people find out I have teens in my midst, they shake their heads, roll their eyes, and take pity on me. “Good luck surviving the teen years!” Teenagers are fascinating young adults—intelligent, funny, adventurous, and curious. Unfortunately, they often get a…

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After enduring a five-year struggle with infertility, I was in total awe of my body when I finally got pregnant. Although I endured six months of morning sickness (which lasted all day long) once I got to the finish line and was well into my last trimester, I felt amazing. I was excited to prepare for my baby’s grand arrival. Of course, there were difficult stretches when I was physically uncomfortable and exhausted. I was also an emotional wreck, wondering how I would manage to have a brand new baby along with my adopted 12-month-old. But with each subsequent baby,…

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Your morning has been a near success. You manage to get your older child to preschool on time despite her last-minute decision to take a black Sharpie and draw a smiley face on the front of her white blouse. The dog came in from the rain the first time you called him, and only one kid balked when you served oatmeal for breakfast. You’ll take it! Goodbye, near-perfect morning—hello, meltdown! Then, just as you sit down to relax with your second cup of coffee, your two-year-old decides he wants to wash his toy trucks in the toilet and refuses to…

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