This is a controversial and confusing question. Some people go on and on about how parenthood melted their selfish hearts and made them realize the importance of devoting themselves fully to making their children's lives perfectly wonderful and completely safe. Other people go on and on about how children are hedonistic little leeches whose spirits … Continue reading Should Your Family Be Child-centered?
This is a guest post from storyteller Doug Elliott, whose free e-newsletter offers occasional stories like this one. Doug's storytelling DVD, and his books about nature for children and adults, would make great holiday gifts! Sphagnum moss sure is an amazing plant! I’ve been hanging out in some wetlands lately, and with our son Todd … Continue reading Sphagnum Moss Diapers
Children younger than 2 years old should not watch any television at all. The experts have been saying this for more than a decade, yet a lot of the parents I know think this is such an absurd idea that nobody could possibly comply with it. We did. Almost. We occasionally took Nicholas to restaurants … Continue reading Babies and Television
This is NOT a paid endorsement. This is my unsolicited review of a product I liked. This is an idea that's been around a while (both my mother and Daniel's say they had something like this when we were babies in the early 1970s) but I hardly ever see today's parents doing it or talking … Continue reading EASY Homemade Baby Food!
When our child was wearing diapers, Daniel and I found it very easy to stick to this simple rule that teaches the child good habits for the future, simplifies clean-up of your hands and anything else that's soiled, is more courteous to the people around you, minimizes the spread of germs, and is respectful of … Continue reading Change diapers in bathrooms.
My only child weaned 5 years ago this month, and I've been meaning to write this article ever since! I finally got inspired by a recent magazine article arguing that the whole concept of breastfeeding being any kind of good idea is A PLOT TO KEEP WOMEN DOWN!!! and supporting this argument by quoting outdated … Continue reading Breastfeeding While Working Outside the Home
Our son is six-and-a-half years old now, and while we've sometimes had trouble with his sleeping habits, in general we feel that the plans we made before he was born, influenced in part by the amazing books The Continuum Concept and The Family Bed, have worked out pretty well. Disclaimer: We have only one child. … Continue reading Sleep Strategies for Babies, Children, and Parents
No, no, I don't mean those tawdry movies--I mean the musical theater productions put on by many real-life high schools every spring. My family sees at least one every year, and we always have a great time, for just $3 to $10 per person with all the profits going to a good cause. The amazing … Continue reading It’s high school musical season!
For years now, I've been meaning to write something about how The Continuum Concept by Jean Liedloff relates to our parenting style and a lot of my life experiences. It's a big idea, and I have a lot of scattered notes stashed in a draft post, but so far I haven't even gotten around to … Continue reading 7 Continuum Concept Experiences
This is a common game of babies: Drop an object on the floor. Wait for adult to pick it up and give it back. Drop it again. Repeat until adult begins tearing hair, turning purple, or otherwise doing something entertaining. We didn't play that game when Nicholas was a baby. I had been noticing since … Continue reading What to do when a baby repeatedly drops something
This article is linked to the greatest tips edition of Works-for-Me Wednesday, where the hostess explains how to get a human on the phone when you call customer service, and more than 178 people have linked to their own helpful tips on how to do all sorts of things. Here are my own greatest tips: … Continue reading How to Do Everything!
Another post from the past, written in March 2005. My son will be 3 months old tomorrow and usually sleeps all night except for nursing, but this morning he was awake and complaining 3:30-5:00. When the alarm went off at 7:00, he (sleeping on his side) flung his top arm above his head and began … Continue reading Precocious Infant Stories
I talk to my kid a lot. He's five-and-a-half years old now and has some interesting things to say, but long before he was capable of conversation I talked to him quite a bit. It wasn't really a conscious strategy, just that I like having a companion sharing my experiences. In my own childhood, I … Continue reading Thinking Out Loud
These two games have been enjoyed by little children in my family for at least three generations. They worked for me when I was little, they've been favorites of my four-year-old son since he was about nine months old, and I look forward to trying them on his younger cousins this Thanksgiving! These are the … Continue reading Knee-bouncing Games
This is a recipe that really works for me! I developed it when I was on maternity leave and wanted hot lunches and needed plenty of nutritious calories for breastfeeding, but I was distracted by the baby and often literally had my hands full. It takes a while to cook, but it can be left … Continue reading Lentil Rice
How do you like to go up in a swing, Up in the air so blue? Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing Ever a child can do! Those are the opening lines of a poem from one of the My Book House books that I loved when I was a little girl. It … Continue reading Swinging for Fitness
by Daniel Efran Well, I figure if my girlfriend and my parents are discussing my penis on the Internet, I'd better chime in! The subject, specifically, is routine circumcision of infants--whether it should be routine, whether it should have been done to our son (which it wasn't), and whether it should have been done to … Continue reading Seven Reasons Not to Circumcise Your Son
My article on why we didn't circumcise our son mentioned that when my partner Daniel learned more about circumcision, he felt "that he was mutilated without his consent simply because of tradition and ignorance" and was so upset that "he wouldn't speak to his parents because he feared he would yell at them." As I tried … Continue reading Circumcision: The Earlier Generation
Our son is four-and-a-half years old and has his entire foreskin intact. We have never regretted for a moment our decision not to have him circumcised. I always was a bit skeptical of the idea of surgically removing healthy tissue from newborns. My father explained that the foreskin can't become infected or cancerous if it … Continue reading Circumcision
You might be surprised to see EnviroBecca touting the virtues of anything disposable. After all, I'm all about cloth diapers and hankies and reusable menstrual gear and real dishes even at picnics and just generally reusing everything! Notice I said semi-disposable. The sippy cups we prefer are lightweight polypropylene similar to those Gladware and Ziploc containers … Continue reading Semi-disposable sippy cups