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Family and Personal Relationships


According to a government report, the number of babies born last year rose by about 4,700 – the first annual increase since 2007. Experts have been blaming the downward trend mainly on the nation’s economy, which was in recession from 2007 to 2009 and shaky for several years after that. Now the economy has started to pick up and so has child bearing – at least in women ages 30 and older. On today’s Sound Living: K-State Research and Extension child development specialist Bradford Wiles discusses how parenting begins long before the baby is conceived.

7/23/2014 7:00:00 PM

Focus on the Journey, Not the Destination

Nearly every parent has probably heard a child recite the famous four words of a family vacation – “Are we there yet?”

7/10/2014 8:00:00 AM


According to the National Retail Federation, the average cost for back-to-school spending for families with children in kindergarten through 12th grade is around $650. In total, families spend $26.7 billion dollars for K-12 children. When you add in college-aged kids, the number soars to $72.5 billion. The biggest cost for back-to-school shoppers is clothing and accessories, followed by electronics – and those costs often hit all at once. However, K-State Research and Extension family resource specialist Elizabeth Kiss says prioritizing needs versus wants will allow shoppers to spread those costs over a longer period.

7/2/2014 7:00:00 PM

Circles Builds Networks, Helps Families Out of Poverty

Circles of The Heartland, Salina, Kansas Video
Circles of Hope, Newton, Kansas Video

Kimberly Trigg, a single mother of three boys living in Salina, Kansas, moved from where she grew up in southern California several years ago to change her life, be a better mother and be a better individual.

7/1/2014 8:00:00 AM

Kansas Communities, Individuals Honored at Day of PRIDE, 2014

Improving a school playground or updating an aging downtown can be expensive, daunting tasks, especially in small communities with limited resources. But some Kansas towns have completed such projects and more. For their efforts, several communities and individuals have been honored with 2014 PRIDE Capital, Community Partners or Communities of Excellence awards.
6/16/2014 8:00:00 AM


More than three-quarters of Americans planned to take a summer vacation last year, with nearly half planning a beach trip. The survey, conducted by Orbitz, showed Orlando was the top vacation destination. Bradford Wiles, a child development specialist at Kansas State University, says a summer trip, no matter how near or how far from home, can create a lifetime of memories. However, traveling as a family – whether it’s by car, train or airplane – presents some unique challenges. On today’s Sound Living: tips to make summer travel fun for the entire family.

6/12/2014 7:00:00 PM

Dislike the Behavior, Love the Child

Nearly every person can recall a time when he or she has witnessed a parent using name-calling, ridiculing or shaming to punish a child in public. While this can be upsetting to witness, imagine the damage this behavior, which might also be occurring at home, has on the child.
6/12/2014 8:00:00 AM

Before You Say ‘I Do’

MANHATTAN, Kan. – Dress bought and tux rented? Check. Cake? Check. Flowers and decorations? Check. Honeymoon booked? Check. You’re ready for the wedding, but are you ready for the marriage?

6/9/2014 8:00:00 AM

How Do I Get Health Insurance Now?

Starting in 2014, most everyone, with a few exceptions (list of exemptions), must have health insurance, or they could be subject to a penalty fee.

6/4/2014 8:00:00 AM


A plan to allow some schools to opt out of increased nutrition standards for school meals in the 2014-15 school year is making the rounds in the nation’s capital. The waiver would direct the USDA to create a process that would allow schools to opt out of the heightened meal standards contained in the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 if they can demonstrate a net loss from operating a food service program for a period of at least six months, beginning on or after July 1, 2013. K-State Research and Extension nutrition specialist Sandy Procter says a recent Harvard study, cited in a USDA Fact Sheet, shows the new school lunch program is meeting or exceeding many of its goals.

5/29/2014 7:00:00 PM


Each year in the United States, approximately 2-point-1 million couples get married – that’s about 62-hundred weddings each day. June, August, May, July, September and October are the most popular months. In addition to the usual pre-wedding preparations, K-State Research and Extension family systems specialist Charlotte Shoup Olsen says it’s important for couples get to know each other. This includes discussing their finances, hopes, dreams and expectations, and how to effectively communicate – especially when disagreements occur. On today’s Sound Living: getting to know each other before the “save the date” cards are sent out.

5/22/2014 7:00:00 PM


Unfortunately, we too often see a parent name-calling, ridiculing or shaming their child in public. While this is upsetting to witness, imagine the damage this behavior – which is also most likely occurring at home – has on the child. K-State Research and Extension child development specialist Bradford Wiles says parents can avoid this damaging behavior by being mindful about how they communicate with their children.

5/8/2014 7:00:00 PM

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.
12/11/2013 8:00:00 AM

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.
12/4/2013 8:00:00 AM

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