Getting Real (Fictionally, of Course)

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Comedian Jim Gaffigan recently launched his very own sitcom titled, perhaps a bit uncreatively, The Jim Gaffigan Show. It’s on TV Land, and the show’s gotten all sorts of attention. I reviewed it earlier this week, and while it has its share of problems, I have to say I enjoyed parts of it. Not just […]

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The Screen-Time Battle Begins With You

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How do we set and keep reasonable and appropriate screen-time limits for our children? With the proliferation of screens everywhere—largely due to the explosion of smartphone and tablet usage in the last few years—this is a pressing question for many parents. But what if the answer begins not with our kids, but with us, not […]

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Mom’s ‘Extreme’ Movie Advice to Son is Right On

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What would you do if your teen wanted to see the recent movie Pitch Perfect 2? Author and blogger Glennon Doyle Melton said yes to her son Chase’s request to see the movie. But she didn’t want her son to be just a passive viewer, so her yes was a conditional one. And the conditions […]

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A Jurassic Connection

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Well, Jurassic World hit the big screen BIG. As we reported, it gobbled up the prize for “largest global first weekend box office ever” with an Indominus rex-sized $511 million plus change. And now, since nearly everybody in the country has either seen it, are planning on seeing it or have talked at length to […]

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Eduardo Verástegui Talks About Faith, Little Boy and the Power of Media

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The New York Times ran “nearly 900 film reviews in 2013,” according to the Times itself. That’s not quite three films per day, but it’s getting close. With that huge number of motion pictures being made each year (and certainly the Times didn’t review every one), it might surprise you to know that Focus on […]

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Pop Culture Might Have Replaced the Prophet, But Nobody Can Push Away the Power of Story

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Our world is soaked in pop … culture. Entertainment saturates everything around us. It’s impossible to get away from it all, even if we wanted to. And, truthfully, how many of us want to? Entertainment tries to fill lots of holes in our lives. It can be an escape. A salve for hard times. It […]

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Exposing the Birthday Party Industrial Complex

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Two of my children went to friends’ birthday parties last weekend. My 6-year-old daughter joined a friend at a trampoline park, while my 8-year-old son headed off to Dart Warz (an establishment catering to the irrepressible urge for tweens and teens, mostly boys, to plunk one another with Terminator-ready Nerf blasters almost as big as […]

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A Country Chat With Garth Brooks

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On March 27, the first part of my two-part blog on Garth Brooks appeared here. Today, I’d like to give you a behind-the-scenes look into the questions and answers that occurred at this “pep rally” to dedicate a new teen area at a Denver hospital. What follows comes from two different interviews—one where I had a […]

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Pitcher Fires Fastball at Twitter Trolls: 3 Lessons for the Rest of Us

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As painful as it has always been for its victims, bullying used to be something that could be escaped by reaching the front door of your home. Now, as much as parents try to prevent it, that boundary no longer exists. Social media doesn’t have to be scary. It doesn’t have to strike fear into the […]

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The Pope Talks Media Influence on Families

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Technology can be a great boon to communication. But it can also be an isolating influence too, something that keeps families from talking instead of enhancing their relational ties. That’s one of the significant takeaways from Pope Francis’ recent message on the 49th World Communications Day. I’m not Catholic, but I appreciated the Pope’s recognition […]

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