Time Matters: A Mother’s Essay

We all know time matters. For parents, we need to focus on how we spend that time. From the moment our children are born until the time they graduate, we have approximately 936 weeks with them. In the book Playing for Keeps by Reggie Joiner, Kristen Ivy and Liz Hansen, these precious weeks are illustrated with a jar filled with marbles—each marble representing one week.

Social Distancing: Our Kids’ Reality

In a world where we are physically distanced from each other, our challenge is to maximize the gift of screens, but minimize the isolation we are feeling. Ironically, for our teens, this challenge isn’t necessarily a new thing. Join us for a peek our kids’ world. We are here to help you make a plan to help them stay healthy.

Letter to My Grandsons

We love it when grandparents and caregivers attend our START Parent Program, and were especially touched when one grandmother shared with us how she was so encouraged by our START Family Pillars that she wrote a letter to her grandsons, promising to raise them to be digitally healthy. We often share how important it is to not just call our kids away from excess screen time, but to invite them in to something better.

Camp Unplugged

When 18 year old Tatum Oakley packed her bags for summer camp, she knew that she would be expected to check in her phone. But what she didn’t expect was how much she would learn and grow in her summer of unplugging. At START, we often hear from families who are overwhelmed by helping our teens find balance in their social media lives, so our ears perked up when Tatum shared a powerful secret: one of the best ways to help your teens find digital balance is to offer them rich offline experiences.

The Days Are Long

“Five breakdowns and four fruit snack packs into the morning, I find myself checking out and looking for something to numb the frustration that I feel building from the inside out. This is about the time I grab my phone and get on Instagram. Immediately my feed is flooded with filtered squares that deliver a message before I even read the caption…” START parent Cierra Karson shares five fresh ideas on how to handle social media fatigue as a young parent.

Phone Free Prom

At START, we believe that digital parenting isn’t about taking connection away from our kids…it is about giving them opportunities to taste and see that face to face connection can be even better. So our hearts were warmed when we heard the story of a gentleman who spotted a group of beautiful prom goers at a restaurant, and was inspired to anonymously pay for their meal if they would put their phones away.

The Courage to Start

As a single mom, my relationship with my daughter is my top priority in a long list of to-dos everyday.   I would do anything for her well-being, and I try to be intentional about giving her my best each day but like most parents, I make mistakes along this journey…