February 2, 2015 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: Black History Month, dialog, equality, mindfulness, Parenting, race, racial inequality
Technicolor and Skin Color
Last month, we took our son to see the Wizard of Oz on the big screen. This all-time favorite had yet to debut on family movie night due to my hubby’s flying monkey terrors. As the one who gets called for nightmares at 2 a.m., I had no need to introduce flying monkeys yet. But the rare chance to watch on a big screen was worth the risk.
We needn’t have worried. In the age of computer generated animation, his baseline of what looks real is vastly different than mine was at age 5. Hoisted up to the movie poster for a Facebook photo op, my kiddo commented on the image of Dorothy and Co. on the yellow brick road, Read the rest of this entry »
January 27, 2015 at 12:00 pm (Question and Answer, Questions and Answers)
Tags: Children, Family Activities, Indoor Activities, Parenting, winter activities
Staying Entertained Inside When It’s Too Snowy or Cold to Go Outside
We asked our readers how their families stayed entertained when they were snowed in… Answers ranged from playing games to playing music and included arts & crafts, baking reading, watching movies, and kitchen science! Let’s their ideas inspire you on this snowy day:
- Amy Meltzer writes: “Blokus, Backgammon, Spot It, Clue, puzzles…baking cookies…and what my girls call “book conferences” when we all get in bed and read together.”
- Andrew Woodland writes: “Play banjo!”
- Gillian Kyle Budine writes: “Cozy up and read!”
- Aviva Lester Sieber writes: “We do arts and crafts, and read.”
- Robin Shtulman writes: “Board games!”
- Leah Pilet-Stinson writes: “Making forts, baking, arts and crafts, set up our tent for indoor camping!”
- Prudence Wholey writes: “Games, reading, Scrabble.”
- Samantha Wood writes: “Reading near each other, watching movies, playing piano and making soups.”
- Mercedes Echevarria writes: “Baking cookies, reading, playing games.”
- Amy Jean Smith writes: “Baking, reading, coloring, playing music and lots of indoor activities that get you moving. My toddler’s favorite is a CD of music with different music for walking, marching, running (in place), skipping and formal walking. And watching the creatures outdoors.”
- Michele Lussier writes: “Books, movies, baking, cuddling/napping…”
- Mike & Mimi Blissed Ross writes: “Creating, music, art, reading, homeschooling, cooking things that require the oven! Dancing! Exercising! Latin music hot hot hot!”
- Jeremia Pollard writes: “We go outside.”
- Dorothy Elaine Lavachia Stant writes: “Go Crazy.”
- Amy Kane-Coyne writes: Playing Banannagrams. Art projects. Baking brownies.
- Michael Muller writes: Games. Reading. Audio books.
- Kate Bailey writes: V.I.D.E.O.
- Aime DeGrenier writes: Coloring, visiting with our awesome neighborhood kids, puzzle.
- Joshua Farber writes: Kitchen table science experiments involving snow – predictions and proposed variations can be drawn by the under-literate crowd.
- Sienna Wildfield writes: Make your own bubble recipe and then head outside and blow bubbles. You’ll be amazed in watching them freeze and then deflate!
[Photo credit: (cc) Michael Hartford]
January 5, 2015 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: mindfulness, New Year's Resolutions, Parenting
Resolve. Re Solve. To solve again.
Recently, a friend lent me CDs by poet David Whyte. I’ve been listening in the car as Whyte reads and reflects on poets from William Shakespeare to Mary Oliver. People who choose words so carefully make me look differently and think differently about how a word sounds and what those sounds mean.
This fall, my kiddo began bringing home Words of the Week from kindergarten. His teacher posts words like WITH and THE as passwords to enter the classroom, to help kids learn by looking. Participating in his early reading, I find myself taking apart words. Paying attention to how the words I use fit together for sounds. For meaning.
Like that blessed and cursed word: RESOLVE.
Resolve. Re Solve. To solve again.
Something you just solve once, just figure out like 2 + 2, doesn’t need to be re-solved. We re-solve those things that aren’t easily fixed. That we’ve tried a few different solutions for, yet haven’t yet found one that sticks.
So here, dear readers, in no particular order, are my daily re-solutions for 2015: Read the rest of this entry »
December 29, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: Motherhood, Parenting, relationships, self help, self worth
Give Yourself a Gift Everyday
In April of this year, after some unforeseen and life-shaking circumstances, I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that I needed to make some changes. Life-quaking things often bring these realizations, and this time was no different, but as I pondered what to do, I became increasingly aware that my options were not abundant for so many reasons. I knew from experience that hoping that those around you would change, needing them to change for you, wishing and dreaming about the day they would wake up after experiencing three ghosts completely renewed in a Scroogian way–well–it wasn’t happening. The changes I needed to make had to be my own. But how?
Read the rest of this entry »
December 23, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Candice Chouinard, Contributing Writer)
Tags: art and play, Creative Free Play, Herbal Remedies, natural cures, Parenting, toddler behavior
Making Sick- Ok
Children love creating in the kitchen and by allowing them to help create herbal remedies; it can open the discussion on wellness and how food and plants can keep us healthy in the winter months. – To discover more folk remedies for colds and flu, check out this post from the Hilltown Families archives: 25 Western MA Folk Remedies for Colds & Flus
Having a sick child is the only thing worse than being sick yourself and ‘tis the season. In our Family Child Care, we are very particular in paying attention to the cleanliness of the children and ourselves. As the frequently used adage goes around here, “hand washing first.” When the children arrive from home they are first asked to wash their hands. They also wash after toileting and before eating. The children love washing their hands, we make it fun by singing, making lots of bubbles and discussing the importance of those clean little paws. They are also beginning to understand the importance of it without us, as adults bombarding them with too big words like “contagious” and “spread of infection”; words that can only scare a child without fully understanding them. Often in their private little circle they can be overheard pretending to wash at the play sink, or wiping their sneezes away with a tissue– this is when you know you have done a great job!
Children around the age of two begin to learn about germs. They do not really have any real sense of the huge impact this imaginative creature can have on them but they begin to follow along with the social cues we are teaching them; “cover your mouth” and “ wash both hands”. Read the rest of this entry »
December 3, 2014 at 9:00 am (Angie Gregory, Contributing Writer, Sustainability)
Tags: Crafting with Kids, Creative Free Play, DIY Crafts, Green Holiday, Green Living, MYO Crafts, natural materials, Parenting
Family Creative Free Play Pays Big Dividends in Crafting Memories for the Holidays
Carving out time to craft has proven to be an essential activity for me. It allows for creative free-form time amongst the schedules, the routine, and the prescribed. I love it when I get into a project alongside the kids. Sometimes it’s baking. Sometimes it’s seed saving and sorting. Sometimes it’s specific materials that inspire a project. I found myself enamored by this beautifully dyed wool roving at the Hartsbrook School holiday fair in Hadley, MA, last weekend and spoke with the vendor about all the ways we could work with the material as a family. I was inspired to try something new. I had never needle felted before and thought that it would be something at least my 10 year old could get into. What I didn’t realize was she was already doing this craft at her school. It’s true the material sat in our fabric closet for exactly a year before I actually put it to use, but I was reignited to the idea when a neighbor showed me some of the needle felting she was doing alongside her billowing basket of cookie cutters, and I jumped in. Read the rest of this entry »
December 1, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: conquering fear, meditation, mindfulness, Parenting, rules
Our new neighbor stands at her mailbox. I cross to say hello. My son runs to join me, freezes at the edge of the driveway like a dog approaching an invisible fence. I look both ways with exaggerated movements, no cars in sight for 100 yards. Hold out my hand.
This IS a good thing, I remind myself. We live on a busy street. I walk back. Take his hand. We cross together.
♦♦♦ Read the rest of this entry »
November 26, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Candice Chouinard, Contributing Writer)
Tags: art and play, Creative Free Play, Parenting, toddler behavior
Making Thanks Tangible
These ARE big feelings for little people. How do you get your child to express a clear emotion?
As everyone knows children, especially toddlers and preschoolers, can have a hard time expressing their emotions in socially acceptable ways. Young children love their parents, love their bothers and sisters and their families and friends more than they have the words to express. They cannot spend hours contemplating the complex feelings and compiling a love letter to mommy. They often don’t know that pushing and hitting and jumping on aren’t the only ways to show their friends how much they really appreciate them. With Thanksgiving coming, I thought this would be a great time to offer a few suggestions on how young children can acknowledge their feelings for the people that are so important to them. Read the rest of this entry »
November 3, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: meditation, mindfulness, Parenting
You are Here
Meditation is like a kindergartener in a corn maze.
My kiddo has been drawing mazes for months. They started as amorphous, blobby worm-like passages with an S for start and an F for finish at opposite ends. But they’ve grown. Evolved. Mutated into intricate intestinal networks. He fills sketchpad after sketchpad, after sketchpad with twists and turns and traps of more and more complexity. We’ve invested in cap erasers and a $1 flea market electric pencil sharpener, so packed with shavings I did wonder about the presence of actual lead from pencils of old.
On a recent Saturday, we coughed up $25 for a family excursion to a local corn maze. Not one for such seasonal fanfare, I was pleasantly surprised to find the experience worth the expense. My imagination had pictured a box hedge maze straight out of the Shining or Harry Potter, depending on your generational frame of reference. Read the rest of this entry »
October 22, 2014 at 9:00 am (Candice Chouinard, Contributing Writer)
Tags: art and play, Creative Free Play, new baby, newborn, Parenting, toddler behavior
The Convenience of Crazy
Bringing a bit of order to creative free play.
Well, I am officially a mother now. Not just a care provider from 8-5, I am a Mama. I can’t send my daughter home after I have cleaned up and waved goodbye to all the other children. She stays – always.
I have historically been enthusiastic advocate for the arts and as my Bio states: “I revel in hands on messy projects.” But now, I see why some parents avoid it. The ‘messies’ are not convenient. Messy projects do not fit neatly into the nightly routine, the bath, the story and bedtime. It throws a big greasy wrench into the nice white mix of the night and clunks around in there distracting you. It distracts us from the dishes, the laundry and that book that you have really wanted to start. So how do we as parents, balance those projects with the rest of our lives? Read the rest of this entry »
October 13, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Sarah Mattison Buhl)
Tags: Parenting, race against the clock, rat race, running late, schedules, Stress, time
Where Has the Time Gone?
I’m not sure exactly what I did with my time when I was, say, 22. I know I was living with my BFF in an apartment in Milwaukee, WI, and working in an art gallery downtown. I did not have a computer, a smartphone, or a Facebook account. I think I read. I think I read the mail, read magazines, read books. I remember going to an upscale hotel where I had a gym membership and I exercised. I went out, I had people over. There was no reality TV, but I had plenty of time to watch it if there had been. But, where has the time gone? Really. Where has it gone? Read the rest of this entry »
October 6, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: Family Travel, mindfulness, Parenting, parenting and yoga, practicing yoga as a parent, stuffed toy, stuffies
Things that Fly
My boy is at school. Kindergarten. A whole new world. He’s only a mile away, much closer than the preschool over-the-river-and-through-the-woods. Still, it feels farther. Distant. I was in and out of his preschool room. Most days we said goodbye at his cubby-hole, but there were regular opportunities to come in and play, read a book, or just cuddle until he was settled.
Now, we say goodbye as he sprints out to the bus. If he remembers to say goodbye. He goes into a big building and hangs his new big backpack in a cubby I have never seen. May never see.
Apparently, stuffies don’t go to kindergarten.
I remember him that very first day, all wrinkled and noisy. Read the rest of this entry »
October 1, 2014 at 9:00 am (Angie Gregory, Contributing Writer, Sustainability)
Tags: Activisim, Climate Change, Parenting, people's climate march
Reflections on the People’s Climate March
NYC Sept 21st, 2014
I felt it was important to go to the Climate March because it was going to be historic—the largest climate rally in history, and people from all over the globe had an opportunity to share a collective stance. Indigenous groups joined with hundreds of thousands of people to be speaking with the same voice with a lot more presence. Singer Angelique Kidjo spoke with Amy Goodman from Democracy Now as she represented the women in Africa who are paying the price for climate change as it is directly affecting their crops and their livelihood right now. In some way I felt just as unheard as them. Al Gore and Bill McKibben stood strong leading the march though all fame aside there was an overall voice throughout of truly this being about ‘us the people.’
So what made my husband and I want to bring our children when the thought of taking 3 kids to the grocery store is daunting? Well, I guess it’s because we recognized that daily discomforts and mood shifts would be a part of our day with kids anyway, so we were ready for that. It was just something we were going to do. To have them not only experience a civil action for a cause they believe in, but also to let them know just how important our actions are. It’s a unique opportunity to broadcast the small ‘work’ we all do every day as individuals to minimize our impact. Read the rest of this entry »
September 29, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: back to school blues, child anxiety, Motherhood, Parenting, relationships
Who She Is Is Just Fine With Me
When our children encounter difficulties, when they run into brick walls or have a problem that needs to be solved, we need to meet them where they are, help them grow with what they already have in a way that they can.
I have been working against my daughter, Ila, under the guise of “improvement” and the misguided statement “she must be able to do such and such in order to be successful.” I have been working against her, which in turn has been sending her a message that she is not good enough just the way she is, which, of course, is not a message I want to send her at all.
Confused? Let me give you an instance: Ila gets anxiety everyday before going into her kindergarten class. When the door opens, and the teacher steps out, she buries her face into my legs, or if I am squatting down at her level she grips my hair or scarf with a vice-like hold. I have to peel her off me by prying her fingers open and kind of giving her a loving pat on the bottom towards the classroom while her chin quivers as if I am torturing her. This, as you can imagine, is agonizing each day, and so I decided that as her mom, I needed to “right” it, fix it, and make it so the anxiety was gone. I decided to start with a good heart to heart conversation. Read the rest of this entry »
September 2, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: child independence, growing up, Off to College, Parenting, Parenting Advice, Parenting Styles
Five Things You Don’t Do The Day After Leaving Your Child at College
Although he’s twenty, just last week, Son1 went “off” to college for the first time. For the past two years, he’d been attending classes at our local community college trying to figure out what he wanted to do. This past spring, all his hard work there paid off and he was accepted to many colleges and universities. He chose a college in Connecticut. (Not a huge surprise since Magicalfairyprincessgirlfriend goes there as well.)
Since this is a first for me, a child leaving…really leaving the nest…I had no Hindsight to lean on, and so I had to rely on my gut instead. The week before, I kept checking in with myself on how I was feeling with all this moving away to a new state, new city, hours away from his family. And well…for the entire week before…heck even while I was setting up his chic dorm room my gut said that I was just fine. All I was feeling, seemingly, was pride and excitement. This move ultimately was what every parent strives for while raising their children. He was unfurling his wings, moving into adulthood with grace and assurance. I am proud. I was and am excited. Even as I said goodbye, the pride swelled in me. “Off you go first born love of my life. Go and live this experience to the fullest.” Then I got in the car…Then I got home. Then…then I woke up the next day and well, the pride and excitement was still there, but so was this distinct melancholy; a weepy sort of lonely feeling that got worse as the day went on. I realized very quickly that the day after dropping my child off to college was going to feel worse than the day of. Tear triggers were everywhere and I learned the hard way the top five things NOT to do the day after dropping your child off at college… Read the rest of this entry »
September 1, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Ginny Hamilton, Parenting)
Tags: Family Travel, mindfulness, Parenting, parenting and yoga, practicing yoga as a parent
Enjoy the Ride
My five year old son is in his room, slamming the door. Deliberately and with precision. He’s got highly sensitive ears – auditory processing the occupational therapist calls it – and I can only assume he’s seeking Just. The. Right. Sound. The SLAM! that will echo through the walls and into my bones set my teeth on edge. Sound rises above the bathroom fan but is muted by the water pressure, warm streams trickling down my hair, ears, face, shoulders. The water, the curtain, the closed door give me the ever so slight space I need to view the scene with a hint of detachment. Amusement, even, though shame lingers around the edges, like mildew never quite scrubbed from the grout.
Occupying the weeks between school and camp, we’re back from a 3 day urban adventure: Amtrak, NJ Transit, and a myriad of subway lines. He’s a stellar traveler, fueled by curiosity and wonder and an obsessive love of trains. Take him out of his ordinary and he shows his extraordinary. I thoroughly enjoy time with the big boy he’s becoming.
So it’s no surprise really when blubbery-whiny-tedious boy returns upon arrival home. And along with him, short-tempered-uninspired-reactive Mama. Read the rest of this entry »
August 27, 2014 at 9:00 am (Candice Chouinard, Contributing Writer)
Tags: emotional resiliency, new school year, Parenting, separation anxiety
Making Separation an Adventure
With the beginning of a new school year upon us, many parents might be planning on sending their children to school, daycare or even playdates for the first time. If your child experiences separation anxiety, there are a few things you can do to help ease their transition and enjoy their time away. As a daycare provider who often helps families move through separation anxieties, I cannot stress enough how significant it is to help your child build this early trusting relationship. In my opinion, children often learn to trust during these times of separation. They learn to trust that you as the parent will always return. “Mommy’s and Daddy’s always come back” is my go-to line. Read the rest of this entry »
August 19, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: child independence, growing up, Parenting, Parenting Advice, Parenting Styles
The Winds of Change
She swings by herself. Grabs the chains that hold the brown plastic rectangle that serves as a seat. Her muscular arms pull her up deftly and her bottom plops down. Her legs that are a full two inches longer than they were in June start to pump. Feet flex as her legs straighten and toes point as legs fold. Soon, very soon, actually unbelievably soon, she has a momentum that would satisfy any child. I am sitting in the swing next to her and she is chattering away about the dog and his bone and the hole he dug, but I am lost in the sight of her wispy hair and the way it covers her round cheeks as the swing takes her back and wiggles in the air like an octopus’s tentacles as the swing moves her forward.
“Slow down,” I long to say, but I know it isn’t about the swing. It’s not about the swing at all. Read the rest of this entry »
August 5, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: family building, Parenting, Parenting Advice, Personal sacrifice, raising a child
Best Laid Plans
The spitting camel has wangled his way into the summer schedule!
We’re halfway through the summer. We’ve had a week of a vacation to the most popular destination in the country. We’ve had major Pinterest wins and Pinterest fails (don’t try the water blob…unless you want to sweat and swear…then by all means go right ahead.). We’ve had lesson after lesson; music, equine, swimming, OT and PT. We’ve begun the process of “real reading,” on the request of my daughter herself. We’ve gone to beaches, to parks, to fairs, to bouncy palaces, to zoos (where the camels got close and up front spitting on me for good measure) and to fancy schmancy concerts where we got to sit on the lawn and listen to the likes of James Taylor and our favorite Beatles tribute band. We bought an amazing sprinkler made up of individual flowers that spray water out at gentle angles and even put the kiddie pool directly underneath the kitchen window so that we could fill it up with warm water from the tap. Pretty successful huh? Not too shabby. Not too shabby at all…so why is it that the moment I realized we were at summer’s halfway point, I got a ginormous pit-of-death smack dab in the middle of my solar plexus? Read the rest of this entry »
July 21, 2014 at 3:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Rebecca Dravis)
Tags: Diabetes, mindfulness, Parenting, Raising a Child with Type One Diabetes, Type 1 Diabetes, Type One Diabetes
It’s a Facebook Miracle
Uh-oh you haven’t updated your status in 5 minutes!
In the end, resistance was futile.
Since the minute Facebook stormed onto the scene a decade ago, I knew I did not want to get caught up in the hype. I began to detest all “social media,” not only as a regular person who found it tedious and self-serving but also as an actual journalist who saw the demise of the fourth estate. If anyone can say anything anytime, then who the heck knows if anything anyone is saying has any truth to it? But it was Facebook that caught the brunt of my wrath, as I watched otherwise sane people get sucked into this never-ending vortex of “status updates” and “likes” and “friends.” Read the rest of this entry »
July 15, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: Body Image, body love, image pressure, Parenting, physical appearance
Modeling Self Confidence
“Sing silly words to the Doc McStuffins CD mommy!” Ila exclaimed. This is often a game that we play in the car to pass the time. So I obliged. I admit that I relish the belly giggles my daughter gets and so it is a challenge for me to make her laugh and the lyrics that I sing can be quite nonsensical. The particular song that was on was Doc singing the virtues of eating a good diet; “Eat good food and your body will thank you. You’re gonna love the way you feeeeel. Eat good food!” But instead I sang, “Eat JUNK FOOD and your belly will be big. You’re not going to like the way you feel. Eat junk food!” And then…..well…then nothing. Just silence. A LOOOONG silence. And then Ila saying, “Turn off the music mommy. Stop singing.” I immediately did what she said out of worry and confusion. There was a little more silence then I looked in the rear view mirror and she was whispering to herself, “But my belly’s big. But my belly’s big. But my belly’s big.”
She pushed down on her stomach hard and pulled the seat belt strap tight to try and flatten it. My heart broke. Into a million pieces…it broke. It happened–her first out loud moment of body hatred–just four years old. Read the rest of this entry »
June 16, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Rebecca Dravis)
Tags: Diabetes, mindfulness, Parenting, Raising a Child with Type One Diabetes, Type 1 Diabetes, Type One Diabetes
Amid all of the stress and anxiety of raising a child with two autoimmune diseases, I have found something to cherish.
When our children are babies, we look at them a lot when they are asleep. That’s partly because they sleep a lot, and partly because they look so precious while sleeping. But we also want to make sure they are OK: I’m sure many of us have put our hand on a sleeping baby’s chest to make sure he/she is breathing!
But once the children are sleeping through the night, once they are toddlers and preschoolers and big kids, how often do we have that peaceful moment of just observing them while they sleep?
Diabetes has given me that. Read the rest of this entry »
June 9, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Sarah Mattison Buhl)
Tags: birthday wish, Parenting, positive thinking, wish
I Still Wish
This month, I will wish on my birthday candles like I always do every year. But this year I finally realize I am not the only one wishing!
I still make wishes. June is my birthday month, and on the 19th I will make a cake with my kids, light the candles, blow them out and make a silent wish. Why? Because although I will be 45 this month, I still lean toward optimism and occasionally towards magical thinking. I have never, and will never squander a wish because in a time when we are on the precipice of the 6th Mass Extinction, I need to be a believer.
I’ve been thinking a lot about wishes, and did a little research. A few years ago new age spiritualists and self-help gurus were tripping over themselves to promote an old idea made new again in a book called The Secret. The idea is that like attracts like, meaning if you think negative thoughts, those negative things will happen to you. If you think positively, your thoughts will become reality. This is also known as the Law of Attraction. Supporters of the Law suggest that life has a catalog, and that you can order exactly what you want, and it will be provided for you. So for example, my friend Jen has always admired a stately brick Colonial home in town. She should “ask” the Universe for it, then believe it can be hers- maybe even take a tour and plan where her furniture will go. The best part is that she doesn’t have to figure out how to make it happen. The Universe takes care of that for her. The house is Jen’s for the asking. She will be really happy when I tell her. But what if she isn’t the only one wishing? What if someone else likes that house (like the people who live there), and they wish to stay FOREVER? What if her husband really likes their current house and hopes to stay there with her until they can’t get to the second floor without a Stair Chair? Read the rest of this entry »
June 4, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Angie Gregory, Contributing Writer, Sustainability)
Tags: Climate Change, conversation, mothers out front, Parenting, Rosenburg Fund for Children
Kids and Climate
My kids are getting older and are more tuned into our conversations. Remember the days as a parent when you could talk ‘adult’ in the front seat about things that interested you and the kids paid no mind? Now at age 6 and 10 our two oldest are more aware and have context for the information they are absorbing, coupled with the fact that they want to understand what the adults are talking about. There’s no changing it; we are in complex times and as parents we are facing the challenge of how to digest this information and create a productive environment for our kids to thrive in.
We knew as parents we’d be met in their adolescence with difficult conversations about sex, drugs, violence, mental illness, and death… Can we add climate change to that ‘complex’ list? Read the rest of this entry »
June 3, 2014 at 12:00 pm (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: marriage, Motherhood, Parenting, relationships
Positive reinforcement means longer living relationships
Some believe that the relationships you have with your children are the only “required” relationships, in that one must keep working on them for the rest of their lives. They are the only ones we’re not allowed to give up on. Some believe that parenting is a constant try and re-try. Some believe that a good parent is constantly evolving so that the connections we have with our sons and daughters remain strong.
I disagree. Not with the sentiment that as a parent we must work and work each day at the relationships that we have with our children. Not even with the idea that we shouldn’t give up on or break up (so to speak) with our children. Hindsight has taught me that our connections with them must remain the most important things that we hold on to as parents. As a parent, I do believe these things to be true.
What I don’t believe is the statement that your children are the ONLY relationships that one isn’t allowed to let go. I believe that marriage, one’s relationship with your child’s parent, also needs to be a priority and should be a relationship that we not only nurture, but hold on to, cherish, and work on, work on, work on. Now of course that isn’t to say that there aren’t toxic relationships; abusive, detrimental or one-sided that must be let go of immediately. But the OTHER kind of marriage; the-leave-the-toilet-seat-up-beer-cans-in-the-living-room-sticky-jelly-on-the-cutting-board-stop-yelling-at-me-did-you-just-flirt-with-that-waitress?-can-we-do-something-besides-watch-tv kind of marriage must not be given up on. I believe that like the relationship you have with your children, a marriage should be a perseverance for the long haul. Read the rest of this entry »
May 20, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Hindsight Parenting, Logan Fisher)
Tags: Motherhood, Parenting, Parenting Adults, relationships
The Woman in Me…
When I mothered my sons, I was consumed by it. It was my job, my calling, my duty. I let everything else go. I became mired down in the details, in doing things right and doing things wrong. Their mistakes were my mistakes. Their mountains were my mountains. Their triumphs were my triumphs. Their sadness, their anger, their tragedies; all mine. I was their mother and that is all. I lost myself. Logan the singer was gone. Logan the writer hadn’t been born. Logan the academic hid her opinions and quest for knowledge. Logan the reader only showed up on a beach in the summer for 30 minutes while the boys were securely and happily playing with their step father. I didn’t even USE my own name. When I spoke it was in the third person. “Mommy will get you a drink.” “Don’t forget, mommy will pick you up at 5.” “Mommy was so proud when you hit that homerun.” The woman in me wanted…longed for SOMETHING, but I thought it was a betrayal to my sons to go out and chase “my dreams.” When I had a chance to work as a staff developer for Columbia Teacher’s College, I turned it down. I couldn’t possibly uproot my boys. When someone asked me to join the community musical and try out for a lead role, I scoffed at the idea. Too much time away from my sons. Who would make them dinner. Who would make sure they did their homework. Who would intervene when the vitriol started between them. I played it safe. I was just their mom, and that’s all they ever saw me as–their mom. As my sons grew, I began to look forward to the day where they didn’t need a mommy as much and perhaps I’d be able to become the woman that was tucked away because of and overruled by the mother in me. Read the rest of this entry »
May 19, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Rebecca Dravis)
Tags: Boston Red Sox, Diabetes, Parenting, Raising a Child with Type One Diabetes, Type 1 Diabetes, Type One Diabetes
Root for the Home Team
The following is a letter I wrote to the Boston Red Sox:
Dear Red Sox,
Sometimes blessings come in unusual packages, like wrapped up in rawhide.
My husband and I attended the Red Sox game at Fenway Park on Wednesday, May 7, with our 8-year-old daughter. It was her first trip to Fenway Park. We wanted to share our story with you.
Right before the game started, a staffer named Mick came to us in our bleacher seats and ask if we wanted to move to better seats, as he had three extra seats in the State Street Pavilion section that were not being used. As we were sitting in the “cheap seats” in the very back corner of the park, under the Jumbo-tron, we agreed and followed him to awesome seats right above the Red Sox dugout. Along the way, he told us he approached us because it was hard to find a party of three and he had seen my daughter wearing her “first visit to Fenway” button.
Here’s what Mick didn’t know: Read the rest of this entry »
May 12, 2014 at 9:00 am (Contributing Writer, Sarah Mattison Buhl)
Tags: Memories, Motherhood, Parenthood, Parenting
The Only Memory That Matters
May is the essence of all my lovely childhood springs…
May is the essence of all my lovely childhood springs. I’m pretty sure I didn’t know at the time that the month was actually May but, in hindsight, it must have been, because the high school band could be heard practicing their marching music in the distance for the Norwegian Syttende Mai parade—a major annual event in my small, Midwestern hometown. My mother opened all the windows and let the warmish springtime breeze drift in along with the band. I remember the sheer, white curtains billowing around her as my mom took down the heavier winter drapes. I remember our enormous crabapple tree heavy with pink blossoms. I remember eating my Chef Boyardee Ravioli out of an orange plastic bowl, while sunning my newly rediscovered knees on the back steps. In my memory, I often ate my lunch on those back steps, but did I? Am I recalling one day in May that somehow got changed in my memory to a lifetime of May days focused on my knees? One thing I know for sure is that apple tree has grown a lot from then until now. Maybe my memory of May has grown in proportion to that tree. Details lost in remembering? Read on
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