My three-year-old Lydia and I recently enjoyed a picture book from our local library, Jacob's New Dress by Sarah & Ian Hoffman, illustrated by Chris Case. Jacob is a preschool boy who enjoys wearing dresses from the costume box but is criticized by his classmate Christopher. His mom is kind about his hurt feelings, but when … Continue reading Every school needs a Jacob!
In photographs of last Saturday's women's marches in Washington, D.C., and around the United States, many pink hats are visible, most of them with ears, indicating solidarity with the Pussyhat Project that was so popular it caused shortages of pink yarn in some parts of the country. It's obvious that many thousands of pink pussyhats … Continue reading Is Your Pussyhat Keeping Someone Warm?
In addition to finishing the books I got for Christmas in time for my birthday, I've read a few other new-to-me books recently, including one that actually has the alternate title What I've Learned By Reading Too Much! I learned something from each of these books. The Dance of Anger by Harriet G. Lerner This … Continue reading What I’ve Learned By Reading Too Much (and 4 other books!)
On days like this, when the sky is so heavy with clouds that we never glimpse the sun, and the wind is cold and damp, and it seems like winter will never end . . . I think of Eminem. I guess I don't mean the rapper himself so much as the character he played … Continue reading The City of Slim Shadies
Our daughter Lydia is 21 months old. Since she was born, almost all of her diaper changes at home (rather than childcare) have been my job. I also launder the cloth diapers myself. Unfair, right? Daniel is just as responsible as I am for the existence of this messy little human, so he should take … Continue reading Diaper Changing Duties: What’s Fair?
When I was born, my mother quit her paying job so she could be home with me. When my kids were born, I took 12 weeks off and then returned to my job. It's my father, not my mother, who has been my role model for balancing parenthood with employment.
These aren't the only books I've read in the past few months, but I noticed two themes that led me to group these reviews together. A Kiss Before Dying by Ira Levin This classic mystery was written in 1953, and reading it in the original edition (courtesy of Daniel's mother) helped me get into the … Continue reading Book Reviews: Mysteries and Mars
This article from The New York Times was reprinted in my local newspaper. In Afghanistan, a mullah who raped a 10-year-old girl in the mosque was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Most Americans would agree that anybody who rapes a child is a horrific criminal for whom 20 years is a light sentence, would … Continue reading One Brave Girl
This post is not meant to criticize parents who make different decisions, just to explain our point of view. "Do you know what you're having?" I am in my last month of pregnancy, and oh, how tired I am of that strangely-phrased question! I just smile and say, "It's a baby!" Of course that doesn't … Continue reading Why we didn’t have a Gender Reveal Party
A Real Man does not mind carrying the groceries in a canvas tote bag with colorful tulips printed on it. A Real Man knows how to cook a meal, wash the dishes, do the laundry, mop a floor, and sew on a button. He considers these basic survival skills that everyone should know by the … Continue reading A Real Man
Last week, the United States Supreme Court decided that federal laws that apply to married people apply to same-sex couples who are married in a state where same-sex marriage is legal. As a liberal person who supports equal rights, I'm supposed to rejoice in this great victory for equality and diversity. In a way, I … Continue reading But why should your tax status be based on your sex life?
It's an age-old battle of the sexes (well, at least as old as toilets with hinged seats): When a male has raised the toilet seat, should he then lower it, showing courtesy to females sharing the bathroom? or should the female take responsibility for checking the position of the seat before she uses it, showing … Continue reading The Toilet Seat Position Problem, Solved!
I used to wear makeup. From age 12 to 16, I added more types of makeup to my daily routine each year, and I went through that daily routine even if I wasn't planning to leave the house. I continued for a while into college before I realized that the insanely stressful life I was … Continue reading I don’t wear makeup.
For a few years now, I've been seeing lots of blog posts about the advantages of meal planning, i.e. figuring out what you are going to eat days or weeks in advance so you can make optimal use of your groceries and get meals on the table on time. Fine, sounds good, but everyone writing … Continue reading Meal Planning When I’m Not the Cook
My paternal grandmother would be 100 years old today, if she were still alive. She died in July 1991, when I was 18. Her name was Janette, so we grandchildren called her Janmother. Janmother was an outstanding high school student but never went to college. She married just after turning 20, and at times she … Continue reading My grandmother got a few things done.
I am a liberal Episcopalian now, and I was raised Unitarian in small-town Oklahoma, so I've never felt like part of the mainstream of what's called Christian in America. I've seen a lot of "Christian" media productions that were painfully hokey, heavy-handedly moralistic, hateful, and/or boring. I never in a million years expected that I … Continue reading Christian Children’s Television
Three years ago, Daniel and I were interviewed by Redbook magazine for an article called "The Changing Shape of the American Family" which profiled several different family structures. The Alternatives to Marriage Project referred the reporter to us as an example of a stable couple raising a child without being married. The final article [which, … Continue reading Why aren’t we married?
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 son, who is officially four-and-a-half years old today, loves colors and enjoys wearing a variety of colors. He was quite annoyed last fall when we went shopping for new socks and found that the choices offered were white, white with gray toes, black (but only thin dress socks), brown (same), and a variety pack of … Continue reading Tie-dyed Socks!
In the late 1970s, my mother was advocating ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, and one of her organizations decided to make the editorial below part of the program they presented to other women's groups. It is adapted from an editorial in a suffragist newspaper published in Garnett, Kansas, in the era when women were fighting for … Continue reading Thirty Reasons Why Women Should Have the Vote