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The Stages of Stepfamily Development

A marriage that brings with it children from a previous marriage presents many challenges.  According to Dr. Patricia L. Papernow, these challenges go through a Seven Stage Model of Stepfamily Development.    My husband and I are eight years into our stepfamily, and I can honestly say that we have just […]

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Happy Family

Happy Girl

How to Create Harmony Between Your Child’s Two Houses

How does your stepdaughter deal with switching back and forth between houses during the week? I get asked this question so often when chatting with others about my family’s blended dynamic. Although the ideal custodial arrangement between two separate parents is always 50/50, more often than not it doesn’t happen. […]


Things I Wish My Stepchild’s Mom Knew: a Letter to BM

I am often discredited as a stepmom blogger because my relationship with K’s mom is so great. I take very little credit for our positive relationship; that was all Amanda, K’s biological mother (BM). She has chosen to invite me into her daughter’s life and treat me as an equal […]

Women Talking

Name Plaque

The Question of Last Names for Step & Blended Families

As a child, I was one of those unfortunate children with a unique enough name that I was never able to find cups, keychains, jewelry, and other items with my name on them. Although I do not currently long for a pencil case or novelty license plate imprinted with “Audrey,” […]


Time and the Stepfamily

I’ve always believed that, with the right attitude and perseverance, just about anything is possible! This is probably why I imagined that with two willing hearts and a can-do spirit that becoming a stepmom and blending families would be a relatively simple process. I liked my husband’s children, and they […]

Family Joining Puzzle Pieces

Father and Son Playing

7 Signs Your Boyfriend is a Great Dad

Parenthood. It’s scary, it’s rewarding, it’s nothing you’ve ever done before. Having kids wasn’t on your cards yet, or maybe even ever, but now you find yourself dating someone with kids. Here, here! That was me 7 years ago. I raise a glass of wine to you because life is […]


An Egg By Any Other Name: What to Call a Stepparent

I go by many names and titles. I am Audrey: a wife, mother, friend, writer, and case manager among many others. I answer to different names depending on the situation or who I’m dealing with. A name is more than just a word used for identification, it also incorporates relationships […]

Stepmom and Daughter Smiling at Each Other