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Family and Personal Relationships

Upcoming K-State Research and Extension Events

K-State Research and Extension is offering these events, available to all interested persons. For more information about these, as well as more localized events, check with your local K-State Research and Extension office.
5/20/2015 8:00:00 AM


Natural disasters, family changes such as divorce, death, serious injury, or community violence can be traumatic for both children and adults. Children often experience disasters differently than adults and they need to have developmentally appropriate explanations of them. A publication, co-authored by Bradford Wiles and Elizabeth Kiss, assistant professors and Extension specialists in the School of Family Studies and Human Services at Kansas State University, details how disasters impact children and the role adults play in helping them recover. On today’s Sound Living: experiencing the effects of disaster.

4/30/2015 7:00:00 PM

Breastfeeding is Best, but what if Breast Milk is Limited or Unavailable?

There may be no greater joy than welcoming a baby into the world, and many moms want to give their babies the best start possible by breastfeeding. For some, however, the amount of milk they produce is limited. For others, the baby may be unable to nurse. And for many adoptive mothers, using one’s own breast milk is not an option.
4/27/2015 8:00:00 AM


A national leader in school nutrition and dietetics says there have been a lot of changes in school lunch programs over the past 50 years and that many challenges – primarily financial – will be faced in the coming years. Penny McConnell, a recent guest speaker for Kansas State University’s College of Human Ecology, is director of Food and Nutrition Services for Fairfax County Public Schools – the 12th largest district in the nation. She talks about the many challenges she’s faced and the challenges that school lunch programs will face in the future.

4/23/2015 7:00:00 PM


Getting children to be more physically active could be as simple as sending them outdoors to play. According to 2012 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention statistics, more than a third of children and adolescents were overweight or obese. Professor of physical activity and public health in the Kansas State University College of Human Ecology, David Dzewaltowski, says the more time children spend outdoors the more active they are. On today’s Sound Living: strategies to keep children on the move.

4/9/2015 7:00:00 PM

Kansas Profile - Now That's Rural - Luke Mahin - Courtland Fun Day

Fun Day. No, not Sunday, as in the first day of the week or an ice cream treat. I refer to an event called Fun Day in Courtland. For 50 years, the rural community of Courtland has put on a community Fun Day.
4/8/2015 8:00:00 AM


As a parent, you want your child to understand and respect that other people have thoughts and feelings. It makes for healthier children who develop into happier adults. Bradford Wiles, an assistant professor and Extension specialist at Kansas State University, says it’s a much easier existence for children if they see value in everyone. He says when children learn to take another person’s perspective and then empathize they are much better equipped to successfully manage peer and adult interactions.

4/2/2015 7:00:00 PM

Understanding Adolescent Health Needs

Many health professionals across the United States are currently concentrating on the increased health needs of baby boomers, an aging population of individuals born in the 1940s through the 1960s. While health care for seniors is important, just as important are the health needs of the younger generation.
4/2/2015 8:00:00 AM


A majority of a child’s communication begins with their parents. Unfortunately, that communication is not always positive. We too often encounter parents ridiculing, shaming or name-calling their child in a public place. While this is upsetting to witness, the damage caused by this type of behavior – which is also most likely occurring at home – can be devastating to a child. As a result, K-State child development specialist Bradford Wiles parents should be mindful of how they communicate with their children.

3/26/2015 7:00:00 PM

Huck Boyd Institute to Present Leader of the Year Awards for Entrepreneurship, Diversity and Service

Outreach, innovation and service would be hallmarks of the five Kansas initiatives which are to be recognized by Kansas State University’s Huck Boyd National Institute for Rural Development as Leaders of the Year for 2015.
3/25/2015 8:00:00 AM

Upcoming ‘Full Circle…an Aging Expo’ in Colby

Although Ron Willis has met many people in his travels throughout the United States, he recalls four individuals from his childhood who taught him early on about being a person with integrity and compassion.
3/24/2015 8:00:00 AM

Upcoming ‘Aging with Attitude’ Regional Expo in Pittsburg

Those who have watched David Letterman on late-night television over the years know about his “Top Ten” lists. The lists usually cover a current event or something out of the ordinary, such as “Bigfoot’s Top Ten Peeves.”
3/24/2015 8:00:00 AM


A certain amount of stress in our lives is unavoidable. However, when stress begins to negatively impact our lives and those around us, we have to deal with what’s causing the stress. K-State Research and Extension family systems specialist Charlotte Shoup Olsen says remaining flexible when change occurs, creating a sense of family togetherness and trust, and working to repair what’s wrong are all things we can do to help manage stress.

3/19/2015 7:00:00 PM


During childhood, parents usually oversee a child’s medical needs – calling for appointments, filling out forms and keeping track of medications. However, as children become teenagers, parents are encouraged to relinquish some of that responsibility and help them transition to adult health care. K-State Research and Extension youth development specialist Elaine Johannes says parents can make this transition easier by starting the process early, discussing health care issues with them – especially when it’s in the news – and sitting in the waiting room while they meet privately with the doctor.

3/4/2015 6:00:00 PM

Thanksgiving Holiday Shopping: Keep Fun and Budget in Mind

Holiday ShoppingA K-State expert provides insight into why people enjoy shopping over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend and how they can make the most of their shopping experience.
11/21/2013 8:00:00 AM

Including Children in Holiday Activities is Best Gift

Oh, the holidays. They can be joyous and warm … or stressful and budget-breaking … or all of the above. Plus they can leave families, particularly children, with unrealistic expectations. To help individuals and families navigate the holidays without breaking the bank and still providing positive experiences, two Kansas State University specialists provided tips.
11/19/2013 8:00:00 AM

Foster Grandparents Reach Out to Military Kids in Kansas

A partnership between Foster Grandparents and Kansas Operation Military Kids provides seniors with information to assist military children, who face many unique challenges and opportunities.
11/18/2013 8:00:00 AM

Farm Transition Workshops Planned in Kansas

MANHATTAN, Kan. – When it comes to devising a plan to transition the family farm to the next generation, communicating may be the hardest part, according to Jeri Albright, who along with her husband, Corky, operates a crop and livestock operation in Jackson County, Kan.
11/15/2013 8:00:00 AM

Push Processed Trans Fats Aside

Trans FatsAs the holiday season approaches, many thoughts run through people’s minds, thoughts that might include food, family, gatherings and gift wish lists. Considering the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s recent news that it plans to phase out the use of trans fats in foods, perhaps the perfect gift for someone this holiday season is a hot air popcorn popper.
11/13/2013 8:00:00 AM