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Sunday, May 13, 2012

Happy Mother's Day 2012!!!!

Happy Mother's Day to all of the women who take the time to give their families all they need to thrive everyday! On our special day, Moms, Grandmothers and Moms-to-be, deserve to know how much we mean to those we love. Take the time to tell the special Moms or Mother figures in your life that they are loved! Have an awesome day and enjoy this touching tribute to Moms from Hallmark <3

Thursday, May 10, 2012

TIME asks "Are You Mom Enough?" New twist on an old post.

Today Time Magazine released the cover photo for an upcoming story about Dr. Bill Sears and the extreme side of attachment parenting. They pose the question, "Are You Mom Enough?", right next to a Mom posing breast partially exposed, while she nurses a boy 3 years old. All this just a few days before Mother's Day. Of course the photo went viral and has quite a few folks all in a tizzy. Does anyone see the irony in controversy swimming around a cover that is supposed to be controversial? I don't get it. I hope that half as many of the people talking about this online will actually pick up the article and read it, myself included. I trust TIME to deliver a journalistic piece that is just as provoking as the photograph. We'll see Friday May 11, 2012 when the issue is released. In the meantime read a post I wrote April 19, 2012...

... Before bed, when I'm in the shower allowing my thought to drifts I review my day. If I've poorly handled an interaction with one of my kids I mull it over regretfully. Parenting has scores of challenges; it's only fair to assume that we won't attend to every exchange suitably. We don't always have the perfect response to inquisitive questions. We don't always lend an ear or a shoulder at the right moment.  Maybe we gave a lecture when a hug was what they really needed. Our hope is that if we manage to get it right more times than not than our children will feel loved, become wise, kind and functional.

While studying infant and caregiver attachment as a counselor I was introduced to the theory of "good enough parenting". The assumption is that if the mother, or primary caregiver, responds to the baby's needs successfully 7 out of 10 times that is adequate in forging a healthy bond. The child will, as a newborn, learn that they are safe. Sometimes, on a bad day, I remember this. It's given me comfort to know that a couple of Mommy blunders are to be expected; they won't do much harm. I don't rest on it, but I've kept it in the back of my head like a "get out of guilt free" card. Today I realized 7 out of 10 really isn't that great. Do the math - 70 percent. It's passing, but surely not acceptable by a Valedictorian's standards. Satisfactory, not great. Responding positively, with empathy, just 7 out 10 times to the needs of your child is like being a good Mom or Dad 5 out of 7 days a week. I find it hard to believe my little ones would thrive if on Sunday and Wednesday Mommy just checked out. Hump Day is hard, but really? Would your employer keep paying you if a little more than two/thirds of the the time you didn't perform to the best of your ability?

I've heard that parenting is a job that only gets more complicated as your child grows. We want our toddlers to learn respect and responsibility early on so they develop good habits that continue into adolescence and adulthood. As parents we must hold ourselves accountable in pursuing the same excellence we expect from our children. Take the time to think before speaking to your child; don't react without considering the consequences. Don't dial it in. When you make mistakes say you're sorry. We're not perfect, but our kids don't know that. Find teachable moments for them and yourself. Be better than good enough.

Is Kelley Owens the best (Mom) rapper alive? Look at Her Now!

I had to reblog this awesome video of Kelley Owens, Wife and Mom of two boys. I found the clip courtesy of Mykal Seaton and my friends at I had to share it with all of you because I can totally relate. I love hip hop and love this playful maternal take on Chris Brown's hit song "Look At Me Now" Enjoy!

See the full article from BMWK at

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Beyond Where the Wild Things Are: Remembering the work of Maurice Sendak

May 8, 2012 Maurice Bernard Sendak, American writer and illustrator of children's literature passed away.  Sendak is most widely know for the critically acclaimed kids lit classic Where the Wild Things Are

Many of us, followed by our children, have fallen in love with the tale of naughty Max and the fanged giant monsters from a far off land. It's a story that never gets old and became a full length feature film in 2009. But Sendak's legacy also includes textbook illustrations as far back as the 1950s,  early membership on the National Board of Advisors of the Children's Television Workshop during the development stages of Seasame Street, as well as designing sets for many operas and ballets. Sendak has been at the center of controversy here and there. His illustrations have included earthy nude drawings of child protagonists and his story-lines have been called "odd, demanding, yet appealing". We enjoy his books in our home, so I suggest you explore the variety of his literature on your own. In honor of his mile long list of works I've compiled a short sample of Sendak's creations that are less popular, but equally as gratifying as the Caldecott Medal winning Where the Wild Things Are. 

1. Nigel and I love In the Night Kitchen, originally issued in 1970. It's a delightful book about a boy's late night bread baking kitchen romp. 

2. Outside, Over There (1981) is the story of a girl, Ida, and her jealousy of her little sister. Ida is resistant of increased responsibility, but eventually comes around and saves the baby from goblins. 

3. The 1956 Kenny's Window Sendak is comprised of 7 stories, each initiated by a "question" dreamed by Kenny. Readers are introduced to the deep imagination and beautiful, strange logic of a young boy, alone in his room at play. 

4. Sendak's "Nutshell Library" (1971) consists of 4 hand-sized concept books:
Alligators All Around -- an A B C book featuring an alligator family bursting balloons, catching colds, doing dishes, entertaining elephants, etc. 

One Was Johnny -- a Counting book featuring Johnny who lived by himself. The story builds one character and event at a time, such as the house that Jack built. By the time there are nine villains "10 is a puzzle, what should Johnny do?

Chicken Soup With Rice -- a Calendar book featuring chicken soup with rice served up whimsically throughout each month of the year. 

Pierre -- a Cautionary Tale -- featuring apathetic Pierre who can't be made to care. Careless Pierre eventually becomes lion fare until retrieved by the doctor. 

5. Bumble-Ardy (2011) is about a mischievous pig who reaches the age of nine without ever having a birthday party. But all that changes when Bumble-Ardy is orphaned and he throws a party for himself and invites all his friends, leading to a wild masquerade that quickly gets out of hand.

6. Very Far Away (1957) is the second book written and illustrated by Sendak. Imagine Where The Wild Things Are with animals instead of monsters. The two book project delivers a traditional ending, as well as more complex statements about happiness and delusion.

7. The Sign on Rosie's Door (1960) is a charming book about Rosie, a creative little girl who transforms herself in a motley crew of characters.

8. We Are All in the Dumps with Jack and Guy (1993), a unique story in nursery rhyme format, follows two guys on a quest to save a kid and a bunch of kittens. Evil rats and the moon are additional characters in this twisted tall tale.

9.  1976's Some Swell Pup or Are You Sure You Want a Dog?  is a book for everyone who has ever trained a dog, or plans to take on the project. It is instructive and fun for all potential puppy owners.

10. Before taking up writing Sendak was best known for illustrating Else Holmelund Minarik's Little Bear series of books. Check them out with your little ones for a fun story time treat.

***Photo Courtesy of Us Magazine