Judy Dutton

I'm a journalist, book author, and mom who’s written about everything from science fairs to sex labs to why Santa scares kids. My work has appeared in Wired, The Wall Street Journal, Elle, Glamour, and other venues; in my spare time I love spicy food, Louis C.K., and hanging with my husband, daughter, and rat terrier in Park Slope, New York.

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    Being voted homecoming queen is every teen's dream ... only when Anahi Alvarez was granted that title at Grand Prairie High School in Texas last Friday, she didn't bask in the glory. Instead, she handed the crown to her friend, Lillian Skinner.

    Why would any high schooler in her right mind pass on such an honor? Because in the days leading up to the event, a group of mean girls had allegedly bullied Skinner, playing a prank by informing her that she'd been nominated for homecoming court. Only she hadn't ... ouch! So when Skinner's friend Alvarez heard what had happened, she and another queen nominee, Naomi Martinez, came up with a plan: If either of them won the crown, they'd hand it to Skinner.

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    Talk about awkward: Your kid is invited to a birthday party, only the invitation says guests should bring "no gifts." If you've ever found yourself in this predicament, you might surmise deep down that you're screwed no matter what: If you follow the host's wishes and show up empty-handed, you will feel like a heel, particularly if other guests bring gifts anyway. Or, if you blow it off and bring a present, the host might truly be miffed and thank you through gritted teeth.

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    There was a time, long long ago, when you could have sworn you were a competent, capable individual. Then you get pregnant, and boom: You miss deadlines, misplace your keys, or blank on the name of a coworker you've known for years ... and once you give birth, the rest of what you think is ironclad in your mind slips away, too. Friends and enemies start whispering that you suffer from "baby brain," also known as "pregnancy brain" or "momnesia" -- all jokey ways to explain a worrisome new development: pregnancy- or motherhood-induced memory loss.

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    'Tis the season when high schoolers get gussied up and pose for their senior portrait ... only these days, students are rebelling against the usual stiff poses and bland backgrounds and are shaking things up! Your teenager probably wants a creative senior portrait -- and some ideas on how to make that happen.

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    Few sensations in a pregnant mom's life are as thrilling as feeling her unborn baby kick, roll, or otherwise bop around inside her body. Fetal movement generally begins at around 18 to 22 weeks, and it's considered a sign that a baby is likely in good health.

    But a mom who is used to her baby moving frequently can be in for a big shock when suddenly baby just isn't moving around as much as she's used to. Before you start worrying, know this: an ebb and flow in movement by your unborn baby is normal and usually nothing to worry about.

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