Mud Pies and Magpies: The Therapeutic Value of Outdoor Play

By Jennifer Hector, LMFT   Imagine the crunch of leaves underfoot and the heavy scent of rain hanging in the air on a Fall day. Mud puddles sit glistening in the yard. A smooth cool breeze blows through trees as birds twirl in the open space mimicking the wind. Around a large oak tree, two children squat barefoot, giggling and … Read More

Families who Play Together Stay Together

By Marta Gea Franca, LMFT Nowadays, families are busier than ever. Parents try to juggle work, house chores, children’s school work, scheduled activities and other responsibilities. There is not much time left for playing and spending quality time as a family. The holidays are an opportunity for families to spend time together and engage in play activities that will promote … Read More

Sensory Processing and Transitioning Back to School

Sensory Processing and Transitioning Back to School: What to Expect and How Parents Can Help Jennifer W. Hector, MA, LMFT Transitioning from a summer of open-ended play, sleeping in mornings, loose structure, lengths of time with family, down time, unstructured video game time and no homework can be extremely challenging for kids. The freedom to move about as little or … Read More

Managing Stress as School Starts: Transitioning to Middle School

Marta A G Franca, MA, MFT Intern It’s back to school time. For many parents and children transitioning to middle school, this can be a stressful time. Many children have high expectations about middle school life. It’s a time when children will be faced with new social and academic experiences. They will be meeting new people, will have new school … Read More

Why Preschoolers Need Play!

Annelise Bilger, MFTI It seems that the importance of play is showing up everywhere from parenting magazines to books, this word seems to be the new ‘it’ word! So what is the big deal about play? We all remember doing it as kids and certainly have fun memories of it, but what about play makes it so important? Well, it … Read More

Sensory Processing and How We Learn

By Jennifer Hector, LMFT   Our sensory lives begin in the womb. At 7 weeks the senses of smell and touch begin to develop and by 14 weeks taste, 20 weeks hearing and 24 weeks seeing. This early development underscores the prime importance of the senses as key to our survival. They are major players in the brain-body that allow … Read More

Tips to become a Mindful and Successful Parent

Tips to become a Mindful and Successful Parent By Marta Franca, MFTI Parenting is a life-long commitment filled with challenges and rewards. Raising children can become stressful as children go through different stages of development and experience their own academic, social and emotional struggles. Most parents want their children to be successful and achieve a healthy and happy life. However, … Read More

Discovering the Power of Play

“You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.”            ~Plato Discovering the Power of Play By Mary Ruth Cross, MFT, NCC, RPT-S CEO/Owner Treehouse Family Counseling Services, PC  One of the joys I had growing up in the Bay Area is that I had a neighborhood full … Read More

A Easy Check-in With Preteen, Teens Or The Whole Family

Do you have trouble communicating with a loved one? Anneliese Bilger from Treehouse Family Counseling Services shares how to use a rose as a symbol, so your preteen or teenager can express themselves with ease. You gain a better understanding on what’s going on in their life.

Mindfulness Play To Ease Anxious

Have you ever felt worried, stressed, nervousness or anxious? If you are an adult who is anxious or have small children and teenagers that are anxious this is a great video to watch. It teaches easy, mindfulness play therapy techniques to use to help you release the feeling of being anxious.