After I wrote about a stranger's astonishment that my four-year-old daughter understands what I read to her, and the book involved happened to be On the Banks of Plum Creek by Laura Ingalls Wilder, my mom sent me a link to an article about the recent controversy over whether Wilder's books are appropriate for today's … Continue reading Cultural Sensitivity and Laura Ingalls Wilder
Tonight I attended a meeting at my son's school (grades K-8) about the decision to hire a full-time security guard and get a metal detector. I meant to do some research before the meeting on the extent to which schools with metal detectors have experienced shooting rampages, compared to schools without. I ended up not … Continue reading Do metal detectors prevent school shootings?
I love the Little House books by Laura Ingalls Wilder and have treasured the experience of sharing them with my children. Little House on the Prairie was the first chapter book that interested Nicholas enough for me to read it to him. His sister Lydia's first chapter book was Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of … Continue reading Little House on the Prairie: Too racist for children?
Are you the parent struggling to leave your child's school each day as he clings to your legs, screaming and crying? Is every morning a struggle to get yourself ready for work and your kid ready for childcare, while she delays in every way imaginable until you're shrieking in frustration, and then she looks at … Continue reading Coping with a Clingy Child
This is a guest post by Michelle Peng, who collected these resources on realistic ways to go green in everyday life. Save About $600 per Year by Switching to Solar Energy Financial Incentives for Green Home Improvements 18 Green Business Ideas for Eco-Minded Entrepreneurs Home Energy Conservation for Kids 5 Unique Ways to Go Green … Continue reading 10 Links for Greening Your Lifestyle
One of the hardest, most humbling things about being a parent is those moments when your child communicates with you using strategies that you've used with him or that he's seen you use with someone else--and you shouldn't have. We all have times when we do something to try to get another person to do … Continue reading Cooperation, Communication, and Consequences
We thought Becky Bailey's book Easy to Love, Difficult to Discipline was a mixed bag that contained a few good techniques; this is one of them. Bailey talks about it in a more long-winded way, but I boiled it down to this formula, which I've found easy to remember and therefore to actually use in … Continue reading The X, Y, Z Method of Child Discipline
This is a guest post by Nicholas Efran. Key: ☆=1 star ⭐︎=1/2 star The Tale of Despereaux by Kate DiCamillo This is a book about a mouse who gets sent to the dungeon for being different. He is in love with the princess in the castle he lives in. Then he discovers that a … Continue reading Book Reviews by a 10-and-11/12-year-old
My son Nicholas is in fifth grade. He and his friends Emma and Sadie have been running a recycling program at their school since third grade. Each year they have to make arrangements with the principal so that their recycling bins will be left alone by custodial staff and they have permission to go around … Continue reading Pen and Marker Recycling: Starting Year 3!
This is a story I've told my son Nicholas many times. It's entertaining for him, but it's also a story that really gets him thinking about right and wrong, temptation and resistance, punishment and forgiveness, what those kids who get into trouble all the time might be thinking, and many other interesting issues. It's inspired … Continue reading That Time I Caused Trouble in Sunday School
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.
This is a guest post by Nicholas Efran. His book reviews are a lot more succinct than his mom's! If you want to know more about the books, you can ask Nicholas in the comments. key:⭐️=1 star 🌜=1half star 😥=so sad 😠=makes me so mad 👎=thumbs down 🆒=cool book 💯=100 Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library … Continue reading 10 Book Reviews by a 10-Year-Old
Welcome to the April 2015 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Family History This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared stories, lore, and wisdom about family history. Please read to the end to find a list of … Continue reading Seder and Holy Week: Family Traditions, Old and New
Lent is about half over. If you're fasting from meat during Lent, and you normally eat a lot of meat, by now you're probably getting kind of bored with fish sticks and macaroni-and-cheese. Time to try something new! I've posted this recipe before, explaining how this delicious complete meal can be adjusted to work with … Continue reading Lemon Creamy Salmon photo tutorial!
Welcome to the March 2015 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Day in the Life This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have given us a special glimpse into their everyday. *** There are three main things I do … Continue reading A Day as Mama and Data Manager
I've only read two books to myself in the past month, but I've been reading to both of my kids, too, and looking at some floor-plan books, so here are two book reviews in each category. Books I read to myself: The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards begins during a snowstorm in 1964, when … Continue reading What I Read Recently: Adult, Tween, Baby, and Architecture Books
Welcome to the February 2015 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Do It Yourself This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants are teaching us how to make something useful or try something new. *** By the time my first … Continue reading How to Get Kids to Behave in Church
I wrote Great Chapter Books for Kids when Nicholas was four years old, thinking I'd add to it later or make it the first post in a series...and I keep meaning to get around to it...but meanwhile, I'm going to use the Quick Lit Linkup as motivation to write about what I've read to Nicholas, … Continue reading Books I’ve Been Sharing with My 10-Year-Old
Ah, December, the month when the days are getting shorter and shortest as we try to pack in shopping, parties, preparations for hospitality or travel, and tranquil spiritual contemplation along with all our usual activities! It makes a kid who persistently wants attention all the more annoying. The December my son Nicholas turned two, I … Continue reading The Nutcracker: music for the imagination
I love drawing floor plans--even though I failed to become an architect--so I looked forward to illustrating my article about how we rearranged our home to make space for our new baby Lydia. I thought this also would be a great opportunity to learn to use TouchDraw, a drafting app I'd bought for my iPad … Continue reading My 9-Year-Old Architect