My granddaughters fight. They make each other cry. Still learning social skills at ages four and nearly two, they grab each other’s toys when they feel they have the greater right to them. They yell, shove each other, and occasionally throw punches. A few days ago, however, I observed an unexpected display of sister love between them that caused my thinking about their fighting to change so profoundly that I practically felt the neurons in my brain shift. (more…)
In the land of motherhood, companions are hard to come by. Making friends is much more challenging than in previous years, mostly due to the limited time you have to spend in social settings. But, we also now live in an age that allows us to be social online, which is exactly where we meet our new companion, Angela, from Blooming on a Budget. Angela is a single mom and nothing short of a rock star. Between work, raising two kids, and blogging, she is one busy lady, but even with all the bustle, she wouldn’t have it any other way. Her bloghighlights useful resources for single moms, including tips forfinancial stability, recipes, and home maintenance. She believes (and rightly so) you don’t need a man to get things done and life doesn’t need to be overwhelming.
These days almost everyone with young children knows about The Elf on the Shelf, but in 2008 when my younger daughter, Margaret, was nine years old and in fourth grade, elves were a fairly new phenomenon. Margaret came home from school one day in early November all excited – her friend Emma had an elf that was staying with her until Christmas and Kate was asking for one too. Could she please, please, please ask Santa to let an elf stay with her until Christmas?
What? I’d never heard of such a thing. I emailed Emma’s mother asking what all this business about elves was. I didn’t like what I heard. You sent away for a little stuffed toy elf (for an outrageous amount of money, plus shipping and handling), the elf stayed a toy during the day while everyone was awake but came alive at night and did mischievous things around the house. Some suggestions were that the elf would watch DVDs, which he would leave around on the floor along with spilled popcorn that he had popped. Or he might go “fishing” for goldfish crackers in the sink, again making a mess. At that moment I was not all that happy with Emma’s mother for getting an elf for Emma. I didn’t have time to clean up messes around an elf-free house; I certainly didn’t have time to make and then clean up messes from a Christmas elf!
But it was hard to resist Margaret’s begging, and her written plea to Santa:
May I please have an Elf? I would really like one!
Lots of Love,
Later this morning, I have to take Rebecca to move into her dorm room. The car is packed with her stuff. She has been preparing for the move all summer — buying XL twin bed sheets, bedspread, new computer, books, clothes (after all, she wore a uniform to school until now), and more. On Monday night, we had a dry run — she insisted that we pack everything into the car to make sure it would fit. After a bit of consolidating, we fit it all into the Honda Civic. It really is going to happen — Rebecca will be leaving for college.(more…)
I write this on the birthday of Bob Newhart, who said, “Laughter gives us distance. It allows us to step back from an event, deal with it and then move on.” For weeks, I have been trying to answer for myself and for this essay the question of why we blog, in particular, why mothers blog while raising their children and what effect the blog has on those children.