How a Severna Park mom made a career of teaching kids to ride bikes

PedalPower Kids “chief fun officer” Rachel Varn believes learning to ride a bike opens a whole new world of adventure for kids. Every “now I can” moment — when students who have mastered balance, gliding and pedaling ride on their own for the first time — is exciting, says Varn, a 36-year-old Severna...

  • State workers eligible soon for new parental paid leave

    State workers eligible soon for new parental paid leave

    Maryland state employees will enjoy a new benefit starting Monday: 60 days of paid leave after the birth or adoption of a child. The General Assembly passed the legislation in its 2018 session to grant the benefit and Republican Gov. Larry Hogan publicized it Tuesday in a news release in which...

  • Why I'll talk to my sons about sexual assault

    Why I'll talk to my sons about sexual assault

    Last week, Facebook reminded me that I wrote my inaugural parenting column for this newspaper four years ago this month. My first essay, with the headline “Ray Rice, my sons — and my daughter,” came pouring out of my mother-of-three heart after the shocking video of domestic abuse at the hands...

  • Motherhood changed me — and my brain

    Motherhood changed me — and my brain

    Motherhood changes you. This is a refrain pregnant women or new mothers will hear quite often. Sometimes the statement — usually coming from another, more experienced mother — is even bigger: Motherhood, they’ll say, changes everything. For me, the warnings came so often, they became like background...

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  • Shootings shatter the illusion that we can keep our children safe

    Shootings shatter the illusion that we can keep our children safe

    Each day, I send my children out the door and watch my husband pull off in the car to take them to school. I close the door, grateful for the quiet, and continue the ordinary to-dos of the morning – showering, makeup, a hasty response to an email that just can’t wait. I don’t usually think much...

  • Kindness Rocks, kids' cooking classes and more spring fun for Harford families

    Kindness Rocks, kids' cooking classes and more spring fun for Harford families

    With spring break around the corner, finding fun activities for the family may be on your to-do list. Harford County has plenty to choose from this season. 1. Decorate #HarCoMDRocks When Churchville resident Kim Bender noticed the Kindness Rocks movement taking off, she and her friend Jamie Smith...

  • Canceled flights, fighting kids, lost phone ... the perfect(ish) family getaway

    Canceled flights, fighting kids, lost phone ... the perfect(ish) family getaway

    Traveling with kids is 90 percent reminding yourself to live in the moment and 10 percent vowing to never again leave your house. I have an uncanny ability to forget this as soon as we return home from a trip and I’ve finished washing our 74 loads of laundry (Guys, did we bring home other people’s...

  • Yes, the holiday aftermath sads are real

    Yes, the holiday aftermath sads are real

    The children have ripped through the presents, leaving cardboard shreds and plastic packaging all over the house. The war-torn area under the tree has become yet another spot in the house that needs daily tending. Sweet potato pies are now sweet potato crumbs, though the tins remain – sad, shiny...

  • 3 healthy activities for Howard County families

    3 healthy activities for Howard County families

    It’s New Year’s resolution season, and this year local organizations are offering plenty of ways to help you reach your health and wellness goals as a family. Julija Sajauskas has fond memories of growing up, playing sports with her parents. “Having the memories of being able to get a little competitive...

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