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Bridging the Age Gap Between Your Teen and Toddler

As a stepmother of two girls, one 20 and the other 14, and mother to twin 2-year-old boys, I've experienced the exasperation of trying to entertain teens and toddlers. What works for one does not necessarily work for the others, no matter how cute the toddlers or how accommodating the teens. But it's also been gratifying to learn certain coping mechanisms and hear from others just how easy it can be, with a little cooperation, flexibility, and creativity.
brothers

It comes down to a simple concept: family. No matter what the age gap between your children, they're still siblings, and always will be. As Deana Linfield (mom of seven, ages 21 through 9) from Irivine, California, remembers being told by another mother of many, what's important is relations within the family; if they're solid, everything else works. With siblings, there's always someone else around -- an instant companion and an antidote to boredom.