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Time flies. That sounds so cliché, but really, it does. I feel like it was just yesterday that my days were consumed with diapers, board books and really long walks around the charney-familyneighborhood to get us to those blessed hours called "nap time." Now my life is filled with helping kids study for mid-terms, stressing about one of them learning to drive and texting my boys that it's time for dinner.

I remember being a mom of two toddler boys only 16 months apart and having older moms tell me that they would be grown up before I could even turn around. They weren't kidding. I also had moms tell me that they hadn't liked the baby charney-boys-smallstage (or toddler stage, or whatever). I remember being shocked. But then I remember liking every stage more than the last – I fell in love with my kids more every day/month/year, and I don't expect that to stop anytime soon.

Being the mom of two pretty awesome teenage boys, I get asked for parenting advice a lot. Here it is:


That's it. Seriously. Be consistent in how you parent them and discipline them, and if you say "no" or tell them that you're going to do something, you'd better do it. You do those two things from the time they are old enough to hear your voice and you'll be well on your way to being in semi-control of what goes on inside and outside of your house. Also know that there will be bad (OK, very bad) days. There will be good days. There will be days where you don't shower and other days where you feel like SuperMom or SuperDad. Trust me when I say that the good will outweigh the bad.

But if the day has been a bad one, make sure you take a peek at them while they're sleeping to remind yourself what little angels they really are. Then wake up the next day and trust that it's going to be a good one.

Karen Charney has been the webmaster for FredParent since 2005. She's married to an active duty Marine and has two boys, ages 14 and 15. She's always happy to give parenting advice if you ask!

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Pouches' Community Corner

Trains, Planes and Automobiles Kids' Race Series


From a small beginning, Cathy Weise of the Ron Rosner YMCA has developed an ambitious three-race series for kids for this summer, with the help of The Great Train Race, Shannon Airport, Dominion Raceway & Entertainment, the Fredericksburg Area Service League and Race Timing Unlimited.

Great Train Race Director Jennifer Taylor was one of the first on board.