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Parents Say This is the Best Age to Get Kids a Smart Phone

This may be the great debate at your house. The kids are begging for a phone so they can enter the world of Snapchat for themselves, and you're holding off as long as you possibly can.  What's the ideal age to let kids have a smart phone, and how does East Texas compare?

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Back To School Shoppers Enjoy No Tax Week In New York City
Getty Images
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No Homework All Year For These Texas Students

A Texas teacher is getting a lot of attention for a "no homework" policy that she says she's planning to stick to all year long.

She wants kids to play outside, have dinner with family, and get to bed early instead of burying noses in the books at home.  Think it'll catch on?

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Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
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Back-To-School Takes Over Social Media

If you are on social media at all this week, you will quickly understand that school has started.

As parents, there is some sort of reflex that makes us mark these back-to-school moments on Facebook, and as you might be able to see in this picture, the kids would rather just hurry up and get to class

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New Backpacks at B2SB
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Kids’ Backpacks Shouldn’t Be Any Heavier Than This

School starts next week in Lufkin and all across East Texas, and kids will be cramming iPods, notebooks, Kindles, phones, a change of shoes, snacks, and maybe even a book into those backpacks.

How heavy is too heavy?  If the backpack weighs more than a certain amount, it can knock kids off balance and lead to back problems later on.  Here's the magic number.

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Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
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Summer Makes Me Wish I Was a Kid Again

Summers were so much fun as a kid, with camps, swimming, and sprinklers, and lots and lots of ice cream.

As an adult, there's no break from work and there can be more to do juggling the kids' schedule, and we lose the magic!  But here's a way to get it back.

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Kids Put a Damper on Memorial Day Weekend Road Trips With These Phrases

It's more than just, "Are we there yet?"  That usually starts in the driveway, and there a dozen other comments and questions that can take the steam out of our Memorial Day Weekend road trips just as quickly.  Here are some of the best zingers from the back seat that stress out parents.

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The School Year is Ending. Do You Toss The Kids’ Artwork?

It's always a dilemma for parents.

Kids create art from the heart all year long in school, and although you've trashed some of it here and there, the end-of-the-year stack takes some consideration because there is guilt involved.  Keep it or junk it?

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Moon
NASA JPL, Twitter
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Lufkin’s Full Moon This Friday Will Make People Wild

Science may be starting to agree that a full moon does make us all a little more unruly than usual. Here's when you can expect the next full moon in East Texas so you can prepare yourself.  

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chipotle quesadilla
Ranker
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Chipotle is Giving Free Burritos to Kids on Saturday

You can score a free Chipotle burrito for the kids on Saturday, IF if they're wearing this certain thing.  Here's what you need to do.  

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Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
Jen Austin - Townsquare Media
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Not All Bluebonnet Pictures Turn Out Great

It's the time of year in Texas when a bluebonnet patch can draw dozens of freshly bathed kids in their cutest clothes, along with those amazing parents-of-the-year armed with high tech zoom lenses ready to upload the photos to online scrapbooks right away to share with Grandma and Grandpa in Poughkeepsie.  And then there are the rest of us.  This was kind of a disaster. 

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Prank
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Some April Fool’s Day Pranks Are More Creative Than Others

For some really creative April Fool's Day joke ideas, all we have to do is watch an episode of The Office.  Remember the episode where Jim feeds Dwight an Altoid every time he hears the Windows login chime, to get him to try to salivate like Pavlov's dog?  Some pranks take more time than others to set up.

Here's the history behind April Fool's Day, and more prank ideas so you can get your kids and co-workers good on Friday.

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Yellow school buses
leekris
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Kids Have a Tricky New Way to Cheat

Parenthood is challenging in so many ways.  Add this tricky way to cheat to the list.

Are your kids wearing a new watch that could actually be a glorified cheat sheet?  It's happening.

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