About Carol

Carol Shwanda chronicles her blended family's lives and experiences offering hope, guidance, wisdom, inspiration and humor to anyone who is in or about to enter into a blended family.

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I would like my blog to be a forum for my readers to share their stories and experiences and express their views and opinions about being a part of a blended family. I am working on a book tentatively titled:Blended Family Stories. It will be an in depth look at the real life challenges and joys of successful blended families. If you would like to be part of my research I'd love to hear from you.Take my Blended Family survey

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For advice or information, email carol@shwanda.com


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  • Blended Family Christmas

    I love Christmas. As a mother of five children who works full time this can be a very busy time of year for me, but I embrace it wholeheartedly because  I have learned how to relax and  enjoy the holidays by being being efficient and by delegating certain tasks to others. (Paul wrapped all of the presents and I hired a house keeper to clean the house.) It saves my sanity and I get to focus on the things I really enjoy.

    I shop online as much as possible and Paul and I have a brilliant time saving idea that has become a family tradition: we give the kids money to buy each other presents.  They know what each other likes and wants and we don’t have to worry about it. What’s more, they get to experience the joy of giving. Yesterday Eva and Cheryl went Christmas shopping and when they came home, Eva announced, “I’m so proud of my gift choices. I really put a lot of thought into them and I just can’t wait to give everyone what I got them!”

    Here’s a Shwanda family Christmas story that always warms my heart. Every year Paul gives his kids money to buy their mother a Christmas present. One year Cheryl was in charge  of holding the money and she lost some of it. It must have fallen out of her pocket. She was crushed. She started to cry because she could no longer afford the present she had picked out for her mother. My girls, empathizing with her, gave her some of their money so she would have enough to complete her purchase. What wonderful sisters and I’m sure their act of kindness and generosity meant the world to Cheryl.

    Published on December 23, 2012 · Filed under: BLENDED FAMILIES, BLENDED FAMILY TRADITIONS, CELEBRATIONS;
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