It is a truth universally acknowledged that every parent has experienced the pain of stepping on a Lego. Some day, hundreds of thousands of years from now, archaeologists will discover our perfectly preserved bodies and wonder what those evenly spaced circular dents on the soles of our feet are.
The first time I had a serious run-in with one of my kids’ toys was when my younger son James was two. I got up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, and I walked smack-bang into a toy truck. If the truck had been made of plastic it wouldn’t have been so bad, but it was made of metal.
My foot connected with a sharp corner of the truck and I got a fair-sized gash. Because this happened during a rare moment in which both kids were asleep at the same time, I couldn’t howl in pain and hop around on one leg. I had to just stand there and bleed quietly.
Five years later, I still have a scar on my right foot. And James still has the offending truck. In fact, both of my boys still have just about every toy they have ever owned since the day they were born. My attempts to get rid of some of them have not gone well. (more…)
Ana Gaby’s son, Evan, climbing yet another tall structure.
“Boys will be boys” people say when they see my two-year-old run around wild and try to jump off the steps or throw sand on his head or when he decides the restaurant table is the perfect race track. Yes, “boys will be boys” I’ve realized, the problem is I don’t really know what boys are like. I learn a new lesson on boyhood everyday as I breeze or trudge through the journey of motherhood.
I grew up surrounded by estrogen. I was an only child until the age of seven and before that I attended an all-girls school and visited with my female cousins often. When my sister was born, my mom, my sister and I created a very special bond that keeps getting tighter despite the distance and space between us. My sister and I grew up in a fluffy, pink bubble where the worst tragedy that could happen in our eyes was related to ice-cream staining our dresses, or our best friend not being allowed to come over for a sleepover.
I was not used to the dirt, rowdiness, sounds and smells that little boys bring into the picture. Nobody told me about the bleeding noses they would give me (product of accidental head butts), or the sore toes (victims of Tonka road accidents), and the fact that I might find dirt and sand in the most bizarre places in my boy’s anatomy. I was not aware of the physicality that entails chasing mothering a very energetic little boy and the taxing toll it would take on my back let alone my manicure. (more…)
I recently read an article in the NY Times that mentioned one of the most common causes for environmentalist guilt is using disposable diapers on their children (see here for commentary on the environmental impacts of diapering).
That got me thinking about my own practical inconsistencies as an environmentalist, and as a mother. After all, motherhood is one of those situations when you often end up doing a bunch of stuff you swore you never would (i.e. before you actually had kids!).
In Brazil when someone else comments negatively on another’s child raising practices, someone else will often advise: “Be careful not to pay for your tongue when you have your own kids!”
I realized that being an environmentalist and a mom gives me twice as many chances at not practicing what I preach! So, I have been thinking to myself, what is my greatest “green mommy guilt”? (more…)
Chugga Chugga Choo Choo….Rosie you go over the bridge and drop off the ice cream. Thomas you help Salty move the coal cars. Chugga Chugga Choo Choo. We’ll all meet at Brendon Docks and have a party. Chugga Chugga Choo Choo.
Zachary spends hours each day playing with his trains. On his belly pushing them. Making up stories for them. He doesn’t watch too many Thomas videos anymore, he knows most of them by heart and re-enacts them every day. (more…)
This week’s Friday Question comes from World Moms Blog writer Maggie Ellison. She asked our writers,
“Do your kids help with household chores? If not, do you plan on giving them any as they get older? If so, at what age? Do/will they get an allowance?”
Here are responses from some of our World Moms…
MamaRobinJ of British Columbia, Canada writes:
“I look forward to the day I can give my son responsibility for cleaning the floors! 🙂
He’s three, but he does help a little bit and we’ll definitely keep him involved. We started long ago with getting him to pick up his toys and if he makes a mess he has to help clean it up, especially if he did it deliberately. He also loves to “help” so we let him and show him how (for the things it’s safe for him to do). As he gets older, we’ll expect him to contribute to stuff around the house, but to me that’s just an expectation as part of the family – I don’t plan to attach an allowance to it. Interested to hear other moms’ perspectives, though, especially if they have older kids and know how well that will or won’t work!” (more…)