How To Parent Teens – Even After Divorce

Parenting can prove stressful at times even under the best circumstances.
But throw divorce and a struggling teen into the mix and that stress level can increase exponentially.  Hostility between former spouses, added to emotional exhaustion, rapidly leaks over into parenting roles.

“Separation and divorce can be a very bitter thing, and sometimes it’s everything a parent can do not to undermine their co-parent,” says Dr. Tim R. Thayne, a marriage and family therapist and author of Not By Chance: How Parents Boost Their Teen’s Success In and After Treatment (

“I get that. But it’s crucial that parents determine to put any animosity aside when it comes to co-parenting their children--for the good of the children--even if they can’t quite do it for each other yet.”

Parenting is so much about teamwork, even if mom and dad are divorced and don’t feel like a team much of the time, Thayne says.

To make things work – especially when a child is struggling in adolescence – the parents should:
  • Be committed to compromise. Do this even if the other co-parent seems unwilling to give any ground. Though you both may want to stubbornly stick to your views, if you can move even one degree towards your co-parent, by doing your part to first bridge the gap, your co-parent likely will have a one degree change in attitude as well. “Remember, it takes two people to maintain a cycle and only one to break it,” Thayne says.
  • Communicate regardless of how difficult that is. Discuss openly with your co-parent your mutual vision for your children and for your co-parenting relationship. This may take a trusted shared friend or a professional to help you identify your mutual expectations of your son or daughter as a foundation for a future co-parenting plan.
  • Don’t underestimate the importance of displaying parental unity. Even when the parents are happily married, teens are adept at utilizing any gap they find in parental unity, Thayne says. They will ask for permission to do something from the parent who doesn’t know the other parent has previously grounded the teen. They will badger the more lenient parent when the firm parent isn’t around. “If one parent is more inclined than the other to say yes to a request, children will have that figured out by the age of 2,” Thayne says. “Even if the pattern of co-parenting is more complementary, they will, in time, find a weakness or divide to exploit.” To co-parent effectively, he says, you must find ways to maintain and display a united front.
“Obviously, if the other parent is not in the picture, you have a lonelier load to bear, so find others who can provide a good sounding board for your parenting concerns,” Thayne says. “But at the very least, remember that parenting is primarily about the well-being of your child, and not necessarily of your co-parent.  I have seen boulder-sized animosity shrink to the size of a pea almost overnight as a result of one person’s humility and willingness to change.”

About Tim R. Thayne, Ph.D.
Dr. Tim R. Thayne, a marriage and family therapist, is author of Not By Chance: How Parents Boost Their Teen’s Success In and Out of Treatment ( He also is the founder and CEO of Homeward Bound, a leading program in early intervention and in-home transition from treatment services from for families of troubled teens. He has a master’s degree from Brigham Young University and a doctoral degree in Marriage and Family Therapy from Virginia Tech.

Winner Annoucement 10/17/17

The Winner of the Bridge of the Gods Giveaway is:

The winners have both been notified. If you did not receive an email, please email directly within 48 hours or another winner will be selected.

See What Happens When A Dog Has To Share Mommy With A New Baby BOOK #GIVEAWAY Ends 11/1

A long time ago, it was just Mommy and me.
We were very good friends.
We did everything together.
It was very nice.
But then . . . things changed.

A dog's world is turned upside-down when his owner brings home a new baby. How will the pooch adjust to the noisy, smelly, furless creature who is hogging all the attention?
  • This humorous picture book story of a family dog's adjustment to the arrival of a new baby will appeal to young readers adjusting to new siblings themselves.
  • Children will enjoy the story's unexpected voice: the first-person point-of-view of the dog.
  • Exuberant, full-color, cartoon-style illustrations add to the fun.
  • Hardcover picture book with dust jacket.
  • 32 pages.
  • 8-3/4 inches wide by 11-1/4 inches high.
Author Linda Elovitz Marshall recalls how her first dog reacted when she brought home her first baby -- her pooch was not exactly a happy camper. Luckily, dog and baby ended up becoming the best of friends. Linda lives with her husband on a farm in the Hudson River Valley.

Illustrator Ged Adamson grew up in Liverpool, England. As a boy, when he wasn't watching TV, he was drawing and doodling. And drawing dogs is something Ged does a lot. He drew the dog in this book as a corgi but Ged insists that it's not because the Queen of England has one, he just really likes corgis
The 411:

In this adorable story Mommy, Baby and Me, an adorable Corgi must share his favorite person with another and he is not too sure he likes this idea.

Sharing isn't easy especially when you don't understand why things had to change. When the pup finally realizes why there is a change he embraces it and gets back to having fun, making mommy smile and gets even more love.

The illustrations are adorable of the cute corgi and his momma spending time together. We see all the ways they spent their day before "daddy" came into the picture never mind a new belly that is making mom's lap so much smaller. I love his little face looking over mom's belly to see her face.

The story is perfect with a ton of illustrations, that help the story along.  My favorite part is at the end when the dog and baby become great pals.

Mom, Dads and kids will love this book. Read it to your kids or your fur babies soon.

To Order:

To Enter:

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy for my honest opinion. No monetary compensation was offered.

The Winner of the Fruit Shoot Giveaway is: KEN
The Winner of the Old McDonald Had A Farm Book is: Super Grand

The Winner of the Vivo Per Lei Espresso Coffee Body Scrub GIVEAWAY is: Julie

The Winner of the Easy Pumpkin Carving: Spooktacular Patterns, Tips & Ideas + GIVEAWAY is:

The winners have both been notified. If you did not receive an email, please email directly within 48 hours or another winner will be selected.

Great Gift Ideas For The Harry Potter Fan On Your List

If you are not a Harry Potter fan yourself, you undoubtedly know someone who is. I am so excited to watch the movies with my daughter who is finally showing interest in doing so.  She knows a lot about the movies, books and merchandise but until you read the books and see the movie you don't understand. I am planning on watching it with her this Sunday. CAN'T WAIT!  Here is my list for the Potter fan on your list that will also be on my Holiday Gift Guide this year coming out soon!

 Harry Potter - The Unofficial Guide to the Collectibles of Our Favorite Wizard
To Purchase
Since 1997 with the publication of the first book, Harry Potter has cast a spell over millions of Muggles around the world--not the least of all bewitched collectors. Harry Potter: The Unofficial Guide to the Collectibles of Our Favorite Wizard conjures rare, extraordinary and magical treasures sprung from the Potter books and movies, and even the imaginations of fans. In its enchantingly visual pages, you'll discover delightful riches including author J.K. Rowling's writing chair that sold at auction for almost $400,000, first-edition books, original art, movie posters, film props, exclusives, limited-edition items, fun fandom pieces, and other wonders to behold.

So with a whisper of "accio" and a flick of your wand, summon forth the fascinating, the fantastical and the fabulous found in Harry Potter: The Unofficial Guide to the Collectibles of Our Favorite Wizard.

The 411: 

We all know this franchise is big and has made billions but this book takes an in depth view of how much some of the items from the movie sold for at auction as well as how much you can purchase them for now.
Can you believe that J. K. Rowling is the first author to make 1 Billion! That is a lot of dough for a book idea that came to her during a train ride. We should all take some time to be silent and see what we can come up with.
Harry Potter has sold of 400 million copies around the world and is published in 55 languages. According to this book the very first book at auction sold for $43,750.00 WOW!

The chapters are broken into categories Books, Movie Posters, Movie Props, Harry Pottery, Harry Potter Merchandise, Limited Edition Collectibles, Fandom, and Potter Inspired Collectibles. 

It is full of information, colorful photos, and facts. Any fan of the books, movies or pop culture collector will love this.

 To Order:  

Harry Potter: The Complete 8-Film Collection

To Purchase

This is all 8 movies in one place! I am getting this for my daughter for Christmas.  It is available on DVD as well.

To Order:


Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: The Illustrated Edition

To Purchase

For twelve long years, the dread fortress of Azkaban held an infamous prisoner named Sirius Black. Convicted of killing thirteen people with a single curse, he was said to be the heir apparent to the Dark Lord, Voldemort.

Now he has escaped, leaving only two clues as to where he might be headed: Harry Potter's defeat of You-Know-Who was Black's downfall as well. And the Azkaban guards heard Black muttering in his sleep, "He's at Hogwarts . . . he's at Hogwarts."

Harry Potter isn't safe, not even within the walls of his magical school, surrounded by his friends. Because on top of it all, there may well be a traitor in their midst.
The 411: 

This is the 3rd book by J.K. Rowling in the Harry Potter Series. It is a large, hard cover book measuring 9.2 x 1.4 x 10.8 inches with whimsical illustrations by Jim Kay that bring the book to life. It has a satin purple book mark to help you keep your place. DO NOT dog ear the pages! That makes me crazy. 

This is a great addition to any Harry Potter collector. 

Here are just a few of my favorite photos in no particular order:

 To Purchase:

October In My World

I do a lot of drive by photos in October. It is my favorite month so I will stop the car many times while driving if I see a photo worth taking. We are only in the 2nd week of October and I have pulled over over 15 times to take a photo. Don't you just love the Fall!?

Word Party Season 3 Is On Netflix and A Word Party Birthday Celebration

Word Party Season 3 Is On Netflix

Follow along with Franny, Kip, Lulu, and Bailey as they embark on silly adventures, learn new words, and sing more songs in 13 all-new episodes.

SYNOPSIS: Word Party is a vocabulary building show from The Jim Henson Company that follows four adorable baby animals as they sing, dance and play. The show invites our youngest viewers to help teach the baby animals new words, practice these new words themselves, and celebrate these achievements with a "Word Party!" Word Party is produced using the groundbreaking Henson Digital Puppetry Studio, a proprietary technology from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop that allows puppeteers to perform digitally animated characters in real time - enabling the animation to be more lifelike and spontaneous.
Do your sweeties love Word Party, how about a Word Party Birthday Party? Here is everything you need to host your own Word Party!

Downloadable Word Party party goods are available!

Raising Money For A Good Cause

It's sometimes hard to raise money for important organizations and charities that help other people. They often need to turn to the public for assistance, and one way to do that is to hold a fundraiser. There are several charity fundraising ideas to make money without making it seem like the organization is looking for help. Any kind of fundraiser should be one that is fun and that brings the community together while broadcasting why the funds will help the charity.

A 50/50 raffle is an idea that will usually lead to a large response from the community. People can buy a ticket to be entered into a chance to win half of the amount that is collected. As the amount of money collected through the raffle increases, the prize will increase as well. This often means that people will want to buy more tickets and done money so that they have a better chance of winning more money. You can get tickets at most office supply stores without spending a lot of money on them. Set a time for the raffle to be open. Draw a name from a bowl or a hat at a large event to celebrate the charity.

If you're looking for an event that offers fun for the family, then consider a carnival. Set up games, booths for vendors to sell foods and crafts and a few rides. Money made from the carnival can be donated to the charity. However, the money from the vendors that they make from their items should go to them while a small fee to use the booth can be donated to the charity.

Another fundraising idea would be an auction. Ask for donations from businesses, such as sports memorabilia, gift baskets and other items that will entice people to want to bid. You can also post items online if you don't want to set them up at a venue. However, if you set up an online auction, you need to make sure it covers a few days to give people time to place their bids and to make more money.

Trick-or-Treat Safety Video from Netflix's "Skylanders Academy"

Skylanders Academy Presents
Halloween Safety Tips with Evil Genius Kaos

Dragons, Ninjas, and Evil Geniuses - Oh My!

Whether you dress-up as a heroic Skylander or an evil Doom-Raider this Halloween, it's important to stay safe as you fill your trick-or-treat bag with yummy candy. Spyro and his heroic team are busy making their costumes, but everyone's favorite evil genius Kaos has taken a break from being bad to share some Halloween safety tips with you. Be sure to share this video to make sure everyone has a scary good time while trick-or-treating! 
1) Always trick-or-treat in a group.
2) Stay in a well-lit area.
3) Look both ways before crossing the street.
4) Use a flashlight or reflective tape.
5) Always have an adult check your candy.
6) Remember to brush your teeth.

About Skylanders Academy
In the animated series from Activision Blizzard Studios, SkylandersTM Academy follows the heroic adventures of Spyro (Justin Long), Eruptor (Jonathan Banks), Stealth Elf (Ashley Tisdale), Jet-Vac (Jonny Rees), Pop Fizz (Bobcat Goldthwait) and their team of young warriors as they travel the vast Skylands universe protecting it from evil-doers. Created by Eric Rogers (Futurama) and based on the popular Skylanders® videogame franchise, the action-comedy centers on the band of heroes as they train under the watchful eye of Master Eon (Chris Diamantopoulos) learning how to keep peace and protect their homeland from the constant threat of villainous forces.

Along with a new class of cadets, and newcomers Cynder (Felicia Day) and Sprocket (Grey Griffin), the team returns in an action-packed Skylanders Academy Season 2 that finds our heroes seeking answers from the past. Spyro begins a search for information about his ancestors in order to harness and understand his special powers. Meanwhile, Kaos’ quest to bring evil rule to the Skylands realms accidentally unleashes a villain more powerful than anything Kaos or the Skylander warriors have ever faced. The Skylanders unite once more for the greatest showdown against evil yet – putting them all to the ultimate test!

The series also features the voice talents of Norm Macdonald as Glumshanks, Catherine O’Hara as Kaossandra, Parker Posey as Dreamcatcher and Susan Sarandon as Golden Queen.

Watch Season One and Two now, streaming on Netflix. For more information about Skylanders Academy, visit
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Dear Readers: At this time all giveaways on Maria's Space are for the United States unless otherwise noted.