Archive for the 'parenting' Category
Tags: Butter London, parenting, Shabby Apple, spring
On this Friday afternoon, I give you…. Thoughts of spring and summer — they will come, one way or another.
On my mind: Butter London’s Spring 2012 nail colors. I could do with a happy shot of one of those (I’m thinking Disco Biscuit, that fab hot pink.)
And this adorable swimsuit — a bikini, no less! — from Shabby Apple. It’s only $26.
Last: a quote I’ve found enormously helpful lately. And I’m not really a quote-y type. I came across it while working on a freelance editorial project recently for Parenting.com:
“There is no way to be a perfect mother, and a million ways to be a good one.” — Jill Churchill
As my friend Amy says, RIGHT ON.
Happy weekend, mamas.
Tags: beaches for families, parenting, Shiny Brite, travel, vacation
Time to hit pause here at Shiny Brite — I hope (think!) it will be a short one, but I’ll have to see how things shake out here in the next little bit.
We had an awesome month of December, so thanks for finding us and for reading! It makes me feel better to know you’re there.
Here’s a little something for you today: The Best Beaches for Families, via Parents.com
More to come. Just don’t know when.
Keep an eye out!
Tags: brooklyn, Curious Jane Winter Field Trips, New York, Samantha Razook Murphy, summer camp, winter
Hey, Brooklyn mamas of daughters!
Looking for fun ways to keep your adventurous girl busy in the city this winter? Of course you are!
Well, Magnolia attended an amazing summer camp this year I was so happy with that I contacted the woman who founded it about doing some freelance work for her — and the Curious Jane Winter Field Trip Series is the collaborative end result. Great trips around the city, all girls, all fun, all winter!
Come sign up! From flying on a trapeze to cooking to building something cool, here’s a brief description of what we’ve got lined up (go to Curious Jane for complete deets):
* Curious Jane Takes on The Sketchbook Project in Carroll Gardens — Have an art book published!
Sunday, December 11
* Learn to Fly at Trapeze School New York in Manhattan
Sunday, January 22
* Build Something Cool at Makeville Woodworking Studios in Gowanus
Sunday, February 12
* Whip Up Something Tasty at The Brooklyn Kitchen in Williamsburg
Sunday, March 11
* Travel to See Your Finished Sketchbook + Sample Sweet Treats from Momofuku Milk Bar Brooklyn in Williamsburg
Sunday, April 22
For full details, and to learn about Curious Jane Weekend Workshops, too, (at the CJ work space, and very fun!), hop on over to the CJ site.
For more on the camp and its founder, Samantha Razook Murphy, read my interview with her….
Hope to see your girls (with a friend or sibling) there this winter!
Tags: family, life lessons, parenting
As parents, we’re constantly self-critiquing: How could I be doing better? Why can’t I be more patient? Why did I say that stupid thing I said, and will it land my kid in therapy?
I’ve been giving that a lot of thought over the last few days. My grandfather — at age 98! — passed away last weekend and we had to make a quick trip home to Texas for the funeral.
Members of my family sat down with the pastor at my grandparents’ church in the days prior to share memories of him — the personality traits and characteristics that stood out over a lifetime — and those were part of the service.
Death and funerals put life in sharp relief. And at a time when I’m mulling many things over — trying to look at things in my life with a fresh eye — it was grounding to hear the details that stood out about my grandfather. I knew those personality traits, too, of course, but I hadn’t thought about them in a long time, and I’d never examined them through the lens of parenthood.
My grandfather wasn’t perfect — who is? — but he got a lot right. A lot about love and life’s work. He was lavish with praise and affection, and — a child of the Great Depression and a WWII veteran in the U.S. Navy — he possessed a serious, studied work ethic.
And here’s the thing: People will remember what you say and do. Your actions have a long and lasting impact. Here are some things my grandfather taught me — things that I’m going to try to remember with my kids in daily life.
You can’t tell your children too often that you love them and are proud of them. Really. It seems like a no-brainer — DUH, as Magnolia would say dismissively. But just as one negative comment can linger in our minds for years, repeated positive reinforcement lays a solid foundation for self-confidence. — “I’m so proud of you and your accomplishments. You have been such a blessing to our lives.” (Yes, “blessing” his word, and even though I don’t attend church as an adult, I can tell you, it’s pretty uplifting to know that someone who loved me felt and thought *daily* — and was never shy about telling me — that I was a blessing to him. Appreciative tears brimming as I write this.)
Things don’t get done by thinking about doing them, or pondering what to do next. My grandfather was a machinist by trade, and he worked well into his late 70s — a precise, solitary work, very mathematical. He loved it, and by all accounts, continuing to work well past the age of retirement likely helped extend his life. Again — 98! And he was very well and with it until just the last couple of years. He applied his work ethic to all areas of life, though — I want to show my kids the same thing. Be productive, take responsibility, get the job done and be kind to others while you’re doing it.
Many lessons learned from my sweet grandmother, too — but at 93, I’m lucky to say she’s still here, and I’m sure I have more to learn from her.
98 and 93 — I hope I have their genes! And I hope I’ll leave a legacy for my children and grandchildren that somehow manages to be just as inspiring.
Tags: back to school, brooklyn, fall, New York City, parenting
It’s official: We no longer have a pre-schooler. Magnolia sealed the deal on that one when she finished Pre-K back in June. Now we are the proud (and astonished — how did we get here so fast?) parents of a Second-Grader and a Kindergartener. WOW.
I’m looking forward to school starting for the obvious reason — take them, please, NYC DOE! — but a few other things are on my mind, too. Like:
* First grade was big — Jasper learned to read! Wonder what new frontiers second grade will have in store for us?
* Kindergarten is a big transition from Pre-K — much more focus on learning and meeting specific goals, and less on creative play. I hope Magnolia, who’s more than a little fond of managing her own time, can make the change easily. Gulp.
* In keeping with the new frontiers motif, M. has her first loose tooth. Already?! She *just* turned 5! According to the dentist, it’s typical for girls to start losing teeth earlier than boys. Apparently, another thing girls do first. Who knew?
* The kids are going back to school and I’m ready for…. Something else. I don’t know what. At least I’ve identified the need. Now I have to fill in the blank. Easier said than done, but I’m moving in that direction.
Also on my post-birthday To-Do list:
* Exercise more. I’ve actually (sort of) already started this, so hopefully increase it a bit and maintain.
* Cook more. We cook a lot, yes, but I really enjoy it. And I want to do more of it. Also, the moms being adventurous in the kitchen encourages the kids to try new foods. All good.
* Read more.
* Work on knowing when the right thing to say is nothing at all.
* Make more time for myself, and carve out more quality couple time for Chrissy and me.
* Surprise myself.
Well, that should keep me busy for a while!
Ready or not, here it comes.
What’s on your Fall To-Do list? Tell me I’m not alone in having one!