About Jen Thorpe

I have a B.S. in Education and am a former teacher and day care worker. I started working as a freelance writer in 2010 and have written for many topics here at Families.com.

Coloring Books Aren’t Just for Kids

Think back to when you were a child. Did you spend time happily coloring the pictures that were in your coloring books? Today, many adults are rediscovering their love for coloring. There are several different types of detailed coloring books out there which are intended for grownups to use. Coloring is fun. It’s something that people first learn how to do when they are in preschool or kindergarten. Little kids can improve their fine motor skills by grasping a crayon and using it to color a picture. They find it rewarding to color a picture all by themselves and are … Continue reading

Ways to Turn Off the “Time Wasters”

Today, there are many people who work from home. There are freelancers whose entire career consists of working from home. The best way to ensure productivity while you are working from home is to turn off the “time wasters”. Before you can do that, you must identify the things that are slowing you down. Social Media Social media can be tricky for freelancers. Writers and bloggers are often working on assignments that require them to write about the “hot topic” of the day. Social media, especially Twitter, has become the go-to for the latest news. The goal is to find … Continue reading

The Pros and Cons of Co-Parenting

There are times when the “happily ever after” ends in divorce. When this happens, couples who are parents must sort out custody and visitation rights. Co-parenting is an option that may work out well for couples that can get along with each other post-divorce. There are also situations where co-parenting just isn’t going to work smoothly. Positive Aspects of Co-Parenting There is a celebrity example of what co-parenting looks like when it works well. Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony split up in 2011. In 2015, they posted on Instagram a family photo from the birthday party of their 7-year-old twins. … Continue reading

How a Transgender Couple Became Parents

When a couple is ready to become parents, they will do almost anything to make that happen. The desire to produce children who carry the parent’s DNA is strong. The Bowsers are a couple who wanted to have children and were able to produce two healthy sons that are biologically their own. The thing that makes this happy story a little different is that both parents happen to be transgender. Bianca and Nick Bowser were featured on 20/20. Their story is, in many ways, similar to thousands of other couples. They met. They fell in love. They eventually decided that … Continue reading

UK Approves Three-Person IVF Techniques

Couples who are having difficulty conceiving have the option of turning to in vitro fertilization (IVF). The process allows that couple to pass their own genetic material onto an offspring that is biologically theirs. The UK recently approved a new kind of IVF that has been referred to as “three-parent babies”. The two techniques are somewhat different but each can be used to help couples produce a healthy child. In vitro fertilization (IVF) is a complex procedure that combines an egg and sperm outside of the body. The conception happens in a laboratory. Once an embryo (or embryos as is … Continue reading

When Parents Play Favorites

Which one of your children is your favorite? This controversial question is one that most parents cannot answer. They love all their children equally (as they should). Problems arise when parents make it clear that they have a favorite child. Those same problems come up when a child perceives that his or her parents are playing favorites – even if the parents are not actually doing that. A study done by Alex Jensen (and others) found something that could be really troubling to parents. It is entirely possible for parents to treat all of their children equally and still have … Continue reading

Real Food Matters

How well does your family eat? Sometimes, it can seem like the easiest solution to dinner is the best choice, especially when busy families are balancing after-school activities, homework, and everything else. Fast food is quick, but generally not the healthiest way to go. Instead, families should change their lifestyle to include real food. Don’t worry if you feel that learning about real food, how to cook it, and where to buy it, seems overwhelming. There is a fantastic website that can teach you everything you need to know. BantingWarehouse understands that real food matters. They provide information for people … Continue reading

Both Parents Should Tend to the Baby at Night

Whose job is it to get up in the middle of the night to tend to a crying infant? There was a time when the automatic assumption was that this task was entirely for the mother. Today, there are plenty of parents who realize that there are good reasons to share this responsibility. Babies are incredibly cute. They can also be exhausting. Many babies simply refuse to sleep through the night. They loudly let their parents know that they need a diaper change or want to be fed. At least one parent needs to get up to tend to the … Continue reading

Family Friendly Ways to Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day

There are many people who choose to celebrate St. Patricks’ Day by enjoying some alcoholic beverages. Families, however, can find plenty of family-friendly ways to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with their kids. Here’s a list of idea for parents who want to give their kids something fun to do this St. Patrick’s Day. Wear Green It has been said that a person must wear green on St. Patrick’s Day in order to avoid getting pinched. It might not be a great idea to introduce that part of the holiday to your kids. There are also a lot of people who … Continue reading

Picture Books that Adults Will Love, Too!

Reading is an important skill. Parents who want to raise an avid reader need to take the time to read lots of stories to their children. It is also a good idea to let your child see you reading. Children often imitate the behaviors they see their parent’s doing. Check out some of these children’s books that adults will love, too! Reading books with your child can be a rewarding experience. It is a nice way to spend time together and share a hobby that you both enjoy. Things can become a bit maddening, however, when a child insists upon … Continue reading