Single Moms Ask Sara

Teens are tough. School work, extra curriculars, part-time jobs, driving, college searches, and don't forget the hormones! We all want to raise fabulous kids, but sometimes the "how to's" aren't clear and we need a little help.

Sara is a winner of Top 25 Moms of Teens - 2012

What's the best thing about having teens?

Teens are a challenge. Teens require parents to really listen, to discuss topics they may not have given much thought to, and to really step up the lessons to so that their teens are ready to move forward in life. The thing I like the best is watching teens step into their lives. It's beautiful to see.

Are the teen years harder or easier for you than the baby and toddler years were?

The teen years are more complex than those early years. Teens have more wants and desires, more opinions about their lives and the world around them. Teens are tricky. Because they often look and act like adults it is easy to forget there is a fragile child in there who does not yet have a fully functioning brain. Teens want and need a parents love and approval, yet unlike a toddler, they often won't seek it. Parents need to work very hard to provide the structure and environment teens need to stay safe and continue to grow.

Do you think it is better to be a teen today than when you were a teen?

I don't think one period in time is better than another. No matter what is going on the world teens are still struggling with hormones, social issues, body issues, education, separation from their parents, and uncertainty about their futures. That experience is timeless.

Can you suggest a fun summer activity like berry picking that helps kids learn where food comes from? Please link to a picture we can use if you have one.

Sara Sherman

We plant tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, lettuces, peas, and strawberries...and we pick, wash, and eat those as they come available. We also go to the apple orchard every year. We talk about the different kind of apples and how they are best used. We figure out how many apples to get of each kind depending on how long they "keep". Apples are also great for teaching fractions...half, quarter, eights, etc. And while we check out new recipes in cookbooks and on the internet, we always make apple dumplings, apple sauce, and put some chopped apples and cinnamon in our pancakes. Yum!
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