Saturday, May 30, 2020

Healthy Habits: Post Partum Depression

I had a chance to interview PPD therapist and author of THIS IS POSTPARTUM: Free Yourself from the Perfect Mother Conspiracy (June 16), Tilda Timmers. Tilda offers hope and advice for all moms who may be struggling, especially during the
She has been offering "Mindful Mama" virtual meditation and mindfulness sessions to help cope.  Tilda is a mom of two, therapist and coach specialising in supporting women around the world through their motherhood journey. Tilda suffered from PPD after the birth of her first child, and right now during Mental Health Month is a good time to get some information on this important topic.

PPD can be difficult to deal with even with support - how can women manage PPD in the midst of a pandemic?
These are trying times for new moms (and dads). Try to open up about what you’re going through as much as you can. Talk with your spouse, your friend, your mom or your sister. It doesn’t matter who you confide in, as long as you start sharing your thoughts and feelings. This way, you feel less isolated and alone while going through PPD. It is also important to lower the bar and not be too hard on yourself. A lot of moms who I see in my practice tend to aim for perfection, which is almost never achievable. This makes them feel like a failure and end up in a negative spiral they can’t get out of.
Please remember: there is no such thing as the perfect mom. But there are a million ways to be a good mom.

How can uncertainty and fear be embraced?
I believe mindfulness is key in this. Mindfulness will help you accept what you can’t change and live in the here and now. Fearing the future or what might happen is only human. But it doesn’t make you feel good and 99% of the time you don’t know what will actually happen. Try to accept that you feel insecure or anxious, grab these thoughts and emotions and then let them float away in a balloon, Moses basket, cloud, etc. Envision how they are floating away and how the fear or insecurity is fading away from you. After that, tell yourself some positive affirmations like: “I love myself unconditionally” or “I’m good, just the way I am.” Write these affirmations on post-its through the house on the fridge, mirrors, the toilet, etc. and repeat them multiple times a day.

What are some tips for new moms who are cooped up at home?
Try to make a schedule with your partner, which one of you works, studies, works-out, watches Netflix, etc. And which one of you takes care of the baby. This way it will become clear when both of you have some alone time. Once you are in your me-time zone, try to look for things you can do instead of looking at what you can’t do at the moment. For example, taking a nice long shower or bath, painting your toenails, watching a TV show, meditating or reading a good book. Find the comforting activities you can do from home, and do them.

Credit: Marloes Verleij
How can new mothers maintain positive relationships with their partners during quarantine?

Keep communicating about what’s going on in your mind, your body and between the two of you. If you’re constantly communicating about these things, you can avoid massive blow ups and irritation. It’s important to share your true feelings, even when they are dark and awkward. It will prevent you from getting that lonesome feeling or believing that your partner doesn’t understand you. He or she can’t look inside your head, so you have to tell them what you need from them or what you desire the most. Or maybe you don’t know what you want and just want to be held. Show each other affection, even on the days you feel like you want to strangle your spouse. It’s normal when you’re cooped up in the house 24/7. Giving each other a hug, a kiss or holding each other’s hand will release Oxytocin, the feel good hormone. This will make you like each other more and attach to each other more. Stay intimate. I don’t just mean sex, but also to reconnect on that physical level as well. A nice massage, a stroke over the arm. Start looking for the things you do have in common and plan a date night at home once a week. Make time for each other and invest in your relationship.

Parenting Pointers: Teen Resources about Covid from St,. Jude Children's Research Hospital

With summer break upon us, the family and child life specialists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital have developed a new resource geared specifically for teenagers to better understand the virus and how to stay healthy this summer. The new teen resource provides accurate, scientific and illustrative explanations in age-appropriate language about the virus, how it spreads, symptoms, protective measures for both physical and mental health/self-care.
The new teen resource joins a suite of age-appropriate tools for parents and children of all ages from teens, pre-teens and younger children available in multiple languages (currently in English, Spanish, French and Arabic). The suite of tools was designed by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital’s child and family experts for utilization by parents and caregivers to help children better understand the current COVID-19 pandemic.

St. Jude Together ( has an entire set of resources for parents, including information developed by the St. Jude experts on “how to talk to your children about coronavirus and COVID-19” to tips and frequently asked questions children may ask about the virus.
General Resources: for general information on the coronavirus and children, St. Jude has developed a general resource page about the pandemic for parents, children and families to consult, which includes how to talk to children, music therapy and educational resources.
Teen Resources: for teenage children, St. Jude has developed illustrative explainers – “the story on the coronavirus” about the virus, how it spreads, its symptoms, how to protect ourselves, and what a pandemic is?
Young Children: for younger children, St. Jude has developed a suite to tools intended to help educate children about the pandemic itself and the impact it is having on our daily lives. The Learn About the Coronavirus Coloring Book developed for children ages 5-9 (currently being translated into nine additional languages), as well as the Learn About the Coronavirus Activity Book geared more toward “tweens” ages 10-13 more or less.

Valerie Crabtree, Chief, Psychosocial Services at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
“Making sure our teens maintain social distancing is a challenge, because they aren’t seeing their peers get sick, and when you add the pretty typical experience of teens to feel relatively invincible, their tolerance for risk, their challenges with brain development in terms of recognizing risk in decision making, creates this kind of perfect storm for feeling like ‘This isn’t going to affect me so I can go out and do whatever I want to do.”

Rachel Schmeltzer, Child Life Professional at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital
“Even though many teens look like adults, their brains still have lots of developing to do. Using resources that explain topics, such as COVID-19 in a way that is easy for them to understand can make a huge difference in their understanding and behaviors surrounding this pandemic. The teen resource developed by the psychosocial team at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital dives into not only the basics about COVID-19, but also some specifics about how to stay social with friends while social distancing, keeping up with school work and professional goals, and coping through a potentially stressful time.”

Emily VanGilder, Illustrator and Graphic Designer in the St. Jude Child Program
“Our main goal with this project was to give access to teens & young adults in a way that felt most appropriate to them, so we created a digital source that they can visit, peruse and return to again rather than a printed piece. We wanted it to still be interactive, so we created games like bingo that teens could download and share on social media. I created characters that resonated a bit more with an older audience, including earrings and hairstyles that felt a bit more authentic for teens. I utilized bright, colorful illustrations and typography that evokes a sense of action, and allows the kids to choose which pieces they want to further engage with.”

Kristin Canavera, Assistant Faculty Member in the St. Jude Psychology Dept.
“Teens are facing their own unique challenges during these stressful times. COVID is impacting a critical time for their social-emotional development, like missing school, prom and graduation, or just hanging out with friends. Our goal was to provide developmentally appropriate resources and tools for teens on how to cope with these changes and how to stay connected with friends in safe ways.”

# # #

St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and cures childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. St. Jude is ranked the No. 1 pediatric cancer hospital by U.S. News & World Report. Treatments developed at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to 80 percent since the hospital opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude freely shares the breakthroughs it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing and food — because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. To learn more, visit or follow St. Jude on social media at @stjuderesearch.

Pet Pointers: Your Pets Are Stressed, Too

Writer: Abbey Nickel,  Source: Niwako Ogata

The COVID-19 pandemic is creating emotional stress and anxiety for humans – but chances are, their furry companions are likely feeling the same way.

Dr. Niwako Ogata, an associate professor of veterinary behavior medicine in Purdue University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, says pets could be feeling secondhand anxiety from their owners who are coping with lifestyle changes caused by the pandemic. People’s disruption in routines and more time at home can also induce anxiety in animals, especially if they have underlying anxiety issues.

“It’s important to understand that animals are not good at coping with uncertainty in general,” Ogata says. “Right now, humans are facing more uncertainty than ever, and our own situations are constantly changing, which can be confusing to our pets. They don’t watch the news or consume information like we do, and they can see is how stressed out we are; it can be very confusing for them.”

Ogata researches anxiety disorders in pets and sees patients in Purdue’s Animal Behavior Clinic. During the pandemic, Ogata says anxiety in pets can be categorized into three different areas:

Social tension. With more people working from home, that means pets are getting more attention than ever – which isn’t always a good thing. With more time at home, tension can form between humans and their pets and, in multi-animal households, pets vs. other pets.

“We’re seeing more cases of animals showing aggression because they’re competing for attention or they’re getting too much attention,” she says. “The most important thing to do is to keep to a routine and avoid disrupting that routine. Work in a room away from your pets if it is your office hours and avoid giving them extra attention even if you’re at home.”

The size of the environment also is a factor. For example, Ogata says, smaller apartments can exacerbate social tension.

And as people start participating in social gatherings again, Ogata says it’s easy for pets to become overwhelmed – especially if they’ve been isolated for the last couple of months. Ogata recommends providing safe, quiet rooms for pets to retreat to and letting them gradually interact with more people to avoid overwhelming them.

Separation related behaviors. For animals that have existing anxiety disorders, having their owners work from home is comforting. But as people start returning to work, Ogata says pets might have a hard time coping.

“For animals with existing anxiety, having their humans work from home is what they’ve always wanted,” Ogata says. “But now as more people start making plans to go back to work, it can be really triggering for these pets. Making that jump from being home all of the time to being gone for eight or more hours at a time is really hard on them.”

Ogata recommends making arrangements to gradually transition back to a full work day, if possible. That might include leaving the house for a few hours during the day in the days leading up to going back to work and taking a lunch break in the middle of the day to check on their pets at home. If slowly transitioning to a new schedule isn’t possible, Ogata says it’s important to know that some animals might need veterinarian-prescribed anxiety medication.

Seasonal triggers. Summer can be a difficult season for animals with existing anxiety disorders, but combined with the angst caused by the pandemic, this summer might be especially difficult, Ogata says.

“Thunderstorms and fireworks are huge noise-related triggers for animals with anxiety,” she says. “Adding that on top of existing stress is going to be overwhelming for some pets.”

Ogata says creating a “safe space” for animals to hide during storms or Independence Day celebrations is helpful – especially if it’s in a basement or a bedroom. Background noise such as music also is helpful. In some cases, owners can look into purchasing non-pharmaceutical approaches such as a wrap-around vest that can calm dogs, anti-anxiety supplements or pheromone products, or ask their veterinarian about anti-anxiety medication options.

Ogata says it’s also important to note that this summer, animals could be affected by all three of these scenarios. She advises pet owners to keep an eye on their pets and consult their veterinarian/veterinary behaviorist when necessary.

“Anxiety is anticipating future dangers from an unknown thing,” Ogata says. “And right now, there are a lot of unknowns, and our own personal anxiety is escalating quite a bit. It’s hard for our pets to not be directly impacted by that.”

Music Minute: Laurie Berkner - Family Concert on Father's Day

Legendary children's musician Laurie Berkner invites everyone to join her for a special Family Concert on Father's Day. This LIVE, interactive, virtual performance for the whole family will take place on Sunday, June 21 at 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time on Laurie's website: HERE.

"I am SO excited for this virtual concert," says Laurie Berkner. "It has been really hard not being able to tour – it’s actually the longest I’ve gone without performing a live, in-person show since my daughter was born 15 years ago! I can’t wait to be able to bring this experience of a live concert to families watching from home, with some added fun that we can have because it’s a virtual show. It feels amazing to be able to do something joyous together during this difficult time."

Laurie Berkner will bring songs like "I Love You Daddy," "My Family," and "Superhero" to her Father's Day concert, along with an array of such well-loved fan favorites as "Bumblebee (Buzz Buzz)," "Victor Vito," "We Are The Dinosaurs," and "Pig on Her Head." Kids and grown-ups alike should plan to grab their instruments (or noisemakers), their dancing shoes (or socks), their superhero capes (or towels), and a stuffed animal (for their heads). Laurie will share some cool new ways to interact through a computer and even bring in a few surprises!

A Laurie Berkner Family Concert on Father's Day!
A LIVE, Interactive, Virtual Performance

WHEN: 6:00 p.m. ET, Sunday, June 21, 2020

WHERE: Laurie Berkner's website HERE

FAMILY TICKETS: $20 Regular*/$80 Meet & Greet Add-On Package

Each Regular Family Ticket includes access to the livestream for one device and an exclusive "welcome" video from Laurie herself.

A limited number of Meet & Greet Add-On Packages are available. Regular-priced tickets must be purchased before adding Meet & Greet Add-On Packages. Meet & Greet Add-On Packages include:

– Two-Minute Virtual 1-on-1 Private Meet & Greet with Laurie Berkner after the show between 7:15-9:00pm ET. Participants will be called directly when it is their turn. (Laurie will do her best to get East Coast families in early to respect bedtimes!)
– Virtual Photo Opportunity with Laurie Berkner.
– Recording of video session emailed to ticket holder 3 days post-event.
– Opportunity for parents to chat with fellow families in the Virtual Waiting Room while awaiting their turn in line.
– Live tech support.

TO PURCHASE TICKETS: Visit Laurie Berkner's website HERE.

*Need-based tickets, intended for those who truly need a discount, are available. Please email to request a $10 need-based ticket, which includes access to the livestream for one device.

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Visit Laurie Berkner's website HERE.
Laurie Berkner on Facebook.
Laurie Berkner on Instagram.
Laurie Berkner on Twitter.
Laurie Berkner on Pinterest.
Laurie Berkner on YouTube.

Mealtime Magic: A Beginner’s Guide to Mezcal - Toast the Spirit of Community and Savor Every Moment by the Sip

IZO Agave Spirits brings a distinctive approach to producing a pure, all-natural Mezcal Joven perfect for all occasions. Founded by Gaston Martinez - a native of Mexico - IZO offers a collection of premium agave spirits sustainably handcrafted from start to finish at its Mexican point of origin for a smooth, award-winning flavor. Now, IZO shares how to enjoy a clean, all-natural Mezcal Joven (or “oven-cooked agave”) that speaks to a deeply-rooted heritage of community, hard work, and the celebration of everyday moments. 

“Mezcal stands out as a distinctly versatile spirit,” explains Martinez. “IZO’s clean, smooth agave flavor blends seamlessly into mixed cocktails and goes does smooth in a shot glass, but its complex flavor is best savored by the sip. This is not true of all Mezcal, because the taste, texture, and profile of each are very different depending on the agave used and the exact process by which it is made.” 

Enjoyed for centuries throughout Mexico, it was not until 1994 that the Mexican government officially applied the name “Mezcal” to the agave spirits made in nine specific Mexican states, including Martinez’s home city of Durango. Today, any agave spirit originating outside of these designated states cannot be called Mezcal. There are approximately 40 varieties of agave used to make Mezcal.  Every Mezcal is different, depending on factors such as the type of agave used, the amount of time it is aged, how it is cooked and fermented, the addition of other ingredients, and whether or not it is filtered after distillation. Mezcal itself can offer a spectrum of flavors and finishes, from sweet and fruity to earthy and spicy. Some are very biting or harsh, while others are smooth and rich.   

Every batch of IZO Mezcal Joven features hand-harvested wild Cenizo agave hearts slow-roasted with smoldering oak in lava-lined fire pits. Covered with a tarp and dirt, the hearts are left to bake for several days before being extracted and fine-ground to separate the juice from fibrous material. This juice ferments for several days before two rounds of distillation - the first producing a product known as “aguavino;” the second, Mezcal. Filtered twice to remove impurities, the resulting artisanal IZO Mezcal Joven is locally-crafted from start to finish. Its earthy, subtly smoky flavor and clean finish complement rich, hearty pasta dishes, pair perfectly with a zesty ceviche and can be enjoyed by the sip with an orange slice garnish. 

Try IZO Mezcal Joven in a delightfully tart Margarizo using:

  • 2 oz IZO Mezcal Joven

  • 1 lime 

  • ½ oz Triple Sec

Simply cut the lime in half, reserving a slice for garnish. Salt the rim of a small glass filled with ice. Place additional ice into a shaker, then fill it with the fresh-squeezed lime juice, Mezcal, and Triple Sec. Shake and strain the liquid into the glass. Add the lime slice garnish and enjoy. 

Explore a selection of cocktail recipes featuring pure-distilled IZO Mezcal Joven at, along with the storied history of traditional Mexican agave spirits. Discover a full collection of IZO agave spirits - including Mezcal Joven, Mezcal Ensamble, Mezcal Reposado, Mezcal Añejo, Sotol, and Tequila Extra Añejo Cristalino - at select Costco stores and online.

About IZO Agave Spirits:

Founded by Gaston Martinez - a native of Durango, Mexico - IZO is a collection of premium, handcrafted agave spirits produced sustainably right in the heart of his rural hometown according to centuries of tradition. Made sustainably from slow-roasted, wild agave hearts harvested on local ranches, every sip of award-winning IZO Mezcal speaks to generations of Mezcaleros bringing people together around shared values of community, celebration, and savoring the reward of a job well done. Every aspect of IZO pays respect to its point of origin, from the locally-sourced Onyx featured atop the bottle to the elegant, minimalist label and bottle design that allows the flavorful spirit within to shine. The pure, sophisticated taste of IZO Mezcal tells the story of centuries’ old Mexican tradition and of one man’s vision to share it with the world. Learn more about the IZO collection of handcrafted agave spirits at

Mealtime Magic: Oat Chia Banana Breakfast Muffin

By: Fresh n' Lean - the nation's #1 organic meal delivery company

Love baking but find you’re short on time? Check out our ultra-tasty vegan oat chia banana muffin recipe. With only 15 minutes of active prep and 30 minutes of baking, you can relish the flavors of healthy homemade gluten-free baked goods without disrupting your schedule.

Hearty ingredients like oats and banana help make these delicious muffins super satiating while chia seeds offer a boost of iron, omegas, and fiber. Healthy fats are represented by coconut oil and plant-based milk. A dash of cinnamon offers anti-inflammatory properties for a deceptively nutritious treat. Add a little maple syrup, and you’ve got a subtle hit of sweetness that will satisfy your sugar cravings without going overboard.

Made from vegan and gluten-free ingredients, these muffins are light and packed with flavor with the perfect amount of crumb. Each muffin boasts 4 grams of protein and can be toasted and smeared with a little nut butter if you’re looking for a little extra protein in your breakfast.

While we love them as part of a healthy, well-balanced breakfast, these vegan oat chia banana muffins are fantastic as a midday snack to help keep the afternoon slump at bay or a lightly sweet treat. Pack these in your kids’ lunchboxes as a healthier alternative to store-bought baked goods.

This quick baking project is something you can do as part of your weekend meal prep. They’re so simple to make, you can even whip up a batch when you’re enjoying a mellow night at home. You can customize them to suit your tastes – add in dried fruit or nuts or a little extra spice to kick up the flavor to the next level.

1Large Ripe Banana
1 1/2Gluten-Free Rolled Oats
2 tbspChia Seeds
1 tspBaking Powder
1/4 tspSea Salt
1 tspCinnamon

3 tbspMaple Syrup
1/2 cupPlant-Based Milk
2 tbspCoconut Oil, Melted
1 tspNatural Vanilla Extract
1Banana Slices For Topping

CARB 29g
FAT 7g

Muffin Pan

Mash the banana with a fork.
In a bowl, combine the dry ingredients (oats, chia seeds, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt).
Add the wet ingredients (mashed banana, maple syrup, plant milk, coconut oil, and vanilla).
Transfer to a muffin pan and (optional) decorate with banana slices.
Bake in 350°F for 30 minutes or until golden brown.

Area Attractions: WonderWorks Branson Opening

WonderWorks Branson is set for it’s grand opening on June 5, 2020 at 10 a.m. This is the company’s sixth location and is the largest one, offering 48,000 square feet of family friendly engaging activities, as well as two cafes. Along with its many fan-favored exhibits, this location offers Branson-area experiences including paying tribute to birthplace of Route 66, the history of Branson, and an exhibit area dedicated to the military. WonderWorks Branson also gives several nods to the Baldknobber Theater, which was previously housed at our address.


WonderWorks Branson was previously scheduled to open at the beginning of April, but the pandemic put a halt to that. This location has since adopted new COVID-19 safety protocols which include reduced capacity, enhanced cleaning efforts, social distancing measures, hand sanitizer stations, employee health screenings, and employee personal protective equipment (PPE). Guests are encouraged to review all safety rules prior to their visit on the web page devoted to COVID-19:


WonderWorks Branson joins a family of other locations around the nation, including Orlando, Pigeon Forge, Myrtle Beach, Panama City Beach, and Syracuse. This location is proud of the experiences offered that are unique to its location. The Branson Experience, which will offer an exploration of the history of the area. Guests will learn about the unique local features that draw millions to the area each year, about the many outdoor activities that people enjoy, and more.


Additional features that guests will enjoy at WonderWorks Branson include:

  • An “American Pride” section in partnership with the US Army, giving people an opportunity to see if they have what it takes to pass the PT test. Guests will also learn about STEM education in the military, American innovation, and more.
  • Guests will learn about the connection it has to Route 66, the Shepard of the Hills, Native American tribes, and current pop culture, among other local aspects.
  • Guests can go “Inside the Lab” to engage in exhibits covering meteorology, physics, light and sounds, space discovery, elements, and much more.


WonderWorks Branson also offers a variety of group activities, facility rentals, birthday parties, homeschool and sensory days, and a WonderKids program. Group activities are available for such groups as Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts, team building, family reunions, and student groups. There is also a corporate discount program available.

WonderWorks Branson features the attraction’s iconic exterior – a grandiose house flipped upside-down. The unique façade is part of WonderWorks’ background story. According to legend, it was once a top-secret laboratory that was lifted and flipped on its roof by an experiment gone awry. From its exterior to its interior, visitors of all ages will enjoy a family friendly, out of this world experience, which will make for some amazing memories. 


The interactive indoor amusement park offers STEM-focused activities for all ages. There are over 100 hands-on activities that are focused on the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. Some of the exhibits will include a bubble room, Professor Wonder’s adventure, interactive sandbox, illusion art gallery, and xtreme 360 bikes. For more information on WonderWorks, visit the site at:


About WonderWorks

WonderWorks, the upside-down adventure, is a science focused, indoor amusement park for the mind, that holds something unique and interesting for visitors of all ages. There are three floors of non-stop “edu-tainment,” with over 100 hands-on and interactive exhibits that serve an educational purpose to challenge the mind and spark the imagination. WonderWorks has locations in Orlando, Pigeon Forge, Myrtle Beach, Panama City Beach, Syracuse, and Branson. For more information visit: and follow @WonderWorksBranson on Facebook, @WonderWorksBR on Twitter, and @WonderWorks_br on Instagram.

Enriching Education: Online International Dinosaur Day Activities with Field Station: Dinosaurs

On Mon., June 1st, Field Station: Dinosaurs is celebrating International Dinosaur Day with extensive Facebook Live content including live feeds from its Derby, KS. location with Expedition Commander, Guy Gsell and The Mighty T-Rex, a 15-foot Juvenile T-Rex puppet.

 Its Facebook page will also include:

  • Live streaming of games, classes and the world premiere of its new theater production of Dinosaur Whodunnit from Field Station: Dinosaurs in Derby, KS.;
  • Dinosaur Troubadours will be singing Field Station favorites live from their homes throughout the day;
  • Kids can ‘Ask the Paleontologist’ questions with world renowned Educator and Paleontologist Jason Schein of The Bighorn Basin Paleontological Institute
  • Lessons with experts including Undersea Dinosaur Expert Mike Everhart, Dinosaur Puppet Master Chris Palmeri, Paleoartist Christopher DiPiazza from Prehistoric Beast of the Week
  • A full schedule of live shows, games and activities hosted by Field Station: Dinosaurs;

 “Parents and educators are looking for hands-on fun educational activities for kids to supplement their home schooling curriculums during the quarantine,” said Mr. Gsell, “Our online learning is a great way for people to enjoy their love of dinosaurs even if they’re not near one of our park locations.”

 All of Field Station: Dinosaurs’ International Dinosaur Day online activities can be accessed for free on Mon. June 1st starting at [12pm EST] at .  For a complete schedule of International Dinosaur Day activities, visit Facebook.

 For tickets to Field Station: Dinosaurs in Derby, KS, which opens on Mon. June 1, visit, or in Leonia, N.J., opening Sat. July 11th, visit for information on the 2020 season.

Soul Sustenance: The Daily Smile Podcast

Wondery, the world’s largest independent podcast producer, has launched a new show titled “The Daily Smile.” The program aims to balance out the barrage of negative news by providing feel-good stories from around the world.

According to the Harvard Business Review, individuals are 27 percent more likely to report having a bad day within six to eight hours after engaging in negative news stories, while 88 percent are more likely to report having a good day within six to eight hours after listening to a transformative story.   

“The Daily Smile” is a daily podcast hosted by Nikki Boyer that showcases the triumphs and uplifting stories in the world. The show explores carefully curated stories, such as the quarantine love story where a young man in Brooklyn used a drone, a bubble and some inventiveness to start dating a neighbor; or the inspiring group of elderly women in the UK who came together during quarantine and created their very own version of “The Golden Girls.”

Marshall Lewy, Wondery’s Chief Content Officer noted, “At Wondery, we create shows that get listeners immersed in a storyand with ‘The Daily Smile,’ we want listeners to start their day with a positive one. Nikki brings humor and positive energy to ‘The Daily Smile,’ and working with her again gives us the opportunity to bring our listeners joy on a daily basis.”

With interviews, inspiring clips and chats with truly special guests, “The Daily Smile” takes you on a journey into goodness that will leave you with, yes, a smile on your face. New episodes are posted every weekday morning.

Nikki Boyer, host of Wondery’s “Dying for Sex,” is a vibrant comedic personality and three-time Emmy award-winning TV personality. As host of Yahoo’s “Daytime in No Time,” Boyer became the most-watched woman on the web, garnering over 700 million clicks. She recently guest-starred on TBS’s “Angie Tribeca” and the Netflix revival of “Gilmore Girls.” 

Boyer had this to say of her new program: “I love the idea that ‘The Daily Smile’ has one clear intention to bring additional joy to the world.  We want to help spread some goodness, one feel-good story at a time.” 

Listen to episodes of “The Daily Smile” on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you listen to podcasts.  And, for ad-free listening, subscribe to Wondery+ at

About Wondery

Wondery is the largest independent podcast publisher in the world, known for character-driven, binge-worthy stories including “Dirty John,” “Dying for Sex,” “Dr. Death,” “The Shrink Next Door,” “Blood Ties” and “Business Wars.” Wondery is behind 8 of the Top 20 New Shows of 2019 according to Podtrac, with The Shrink Next Door landing at the #1 new show of 2019. Twenty-six of Wondery’s shows have hit #1 on Apple Podcasts. Several of them have been, or are in the process of being, adapted for scripted television. Wondery has gained critical acclaim and commercial success for its immersive approach to sonic, emotionally-immersive storytelling which helps listeners to “feel the story”.  To learn more go to

Parenting Pointers: How to Help Your Kids Build a Healthy Relationship with Technology

In the wake of stay-at-home orders, our kids have all been a little bit too familiar with technology. Not to downplay the benefits like interconnectivity, the continuation of learning, and virtual expeditions that have been keeping us sane during this turbulent time.
Although we don’t need to cut out devices completely, it’s important to employ healthy technology boundaries when it comes to both our screen use and our children’s.

Panda Security illustrates easy-to-use tactics to make relationships with tech even more beneficial. Setting these boundaries for ourselves helps our little ones follow suit easily. Always supervise young children on devices to ensure best practices are used from the get-go. For older and teenage kids, teach general best practices first. From there, explain different tech tactics for different times of the day.

Some of these might include:
  • Muting and blocking negative accounts.
  • Not using your phone as an alarm.
  • Setting screentime limits.
  • Making no phone zones.
Find more technology tactics to build healthy online relationships with the visual below.