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First Things First Column

The Family Column is a series of articles providing helpful information on families and marriages. It is published every Sunday in the Chattanooga Times Free Press. Subscribe to our  Family Column RSS Feed.

Click here to contact Julie Baumgardner


If you could have paradise however you imagine it, what would it look like? If you could have that kind of paradise, do whatever you wanted to do there and be in charge of it, would you go there? If you could have that kind of paradise, but nobody is allowed to be with you, would you still go?
Do you remember when the only television in the home was in the family room or when your family traveled in the car everybody tried to find license plates from all 50 states? Now practically every car is equipped with a DVD player and every home has multiple televisions.
In less than a month children across the region will be headed to school, many of them for the first time. Along with the excitement of a new adventure, there are some children and probably a lot of parents who are feeling a bit nervous.
According to marriage experts, there are probably more fireworks going on this weekend outside the bedroom than inside.
Over the past decade there has been a shift in the sequence of marriage and having babies. Remember the rhyme, “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage”. Not so anymore. New research indicates 57 percent of mothers between the age of 26 and 31 are unmarried when their child is born.