Planning a hello Kitty birthday can be so much fun. because she's so cute, and cartoony, it's easy to make a Hello Kitty cake for a birthday cake. I found a bunch of great ideas at homemadebirthdays.com. Plus, they have cheap hello kitty invitations to order. I will post pictures next week.
Monday, October 4, 2010
Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Excerpted from: Death on a Silver Platter:
What do these people think life is all about when they say modern kids have “life handed to them on a silver platter?” Because the children they’re speaking of have bodies (and therefore minds) robbed of nutrition, and are sheltered even in nice weather. And what of human affection, when mainstream parenting “experts” defy thousands of years of human evolution by speaking out against co-sleeping and saying that daycare is OK for infants? I think what modern kids are getting is really “Spiritual Death On a Silver Platter.”
I can’t even think of a time in history when kids have been more starved and neglected than today. They speak of an “obesity epidemic” as if it’s the children giving it to one another. But the reality is, aisles and aisles of dead, processed foods sit on grocery store shelves marketed especially for “busy families” with cartoon characters on the labels and “kid approved” stamps. As if the children really understand that prolonged exposure to non-nutritive foods is DEADLY. How could they know? What, in the history of evolution, would ever cause children to be skeptical of their food source? And the USDA food pyramid? What a joke, it has white bread on the picture. That’s not food.
So what about kids with cell phones, designer jeans and things like that? Why should kids- surrounded by the same advertising messages that cause their parents to piss away their income, be exempt? And in a culture that values consumerism, shopping-til-you-drop and “feeding the economy” – should the children be blamed for wanting? Of course they want, how could they not want? They are TRAINED and CONDITIONED to want. And it’s not because their parents gave them their old cell phone, it’s because 80% of the people in any given town have a cell phone, because there are no pay phones, because families who aren’t together still need to communicate and every night on the news, some kid is kidnapped and because cell phones really are more convenient and why the hell would anyone call a child spoiled just because they’re easy to get in touch with? Are we defined by our possessions? Oh yes, I forgot. In this culture we are, aren’t we? So adults with phones are important or responsible. Adults with iPhones are badass, but kids with cell phones are spoiled? Or are they only spoiled if they happen to want an upgrade? I’ve always had trouble with rules, sorry. And if the child has some remarkable character traits, like maybe they care for their elderly grandmother, they knit sweaters for the homeless, they call their elders Mr and Mrs, or maybe they dislike the taste of coffee, then are they still spoiled by virtue of the jeans they wear and the phone in their pocket?
And nutrition- isn’t it frightening that there’s a multi-billion dollar industry who makes a goal of reducing the number of women breastfeeding. Isn’t it rather disgusting that people view infant feeding as a consumer choice, rather than as a child’s inherent right to grow and develop the way nature intended? Why are chemicals the “popular alternative” and not banked human milk? Many of these kids are doomed from the day they are born, fed lies and toxins designed to turn them into lazy consumers.
Read more... Death on a Silver Platter
Saturday, September 25, 2010
I am so excited to tell you about an Interview Series for parents
and teachers called the Happier Kids Now Online Expo.
The Happier Kids Now Online Expo is a FREE Interview Series hosted
by Rhonda Ryder and Patrick McMillan providing a wealth of
life-changing information from 24 happiness, self-esteem, health
and education experts.
It’s specifically designed for parents, teachers and homeschoolers.
And, when you sign up for access to the event (at zero cost!),
you’ll receive a complimentary copy of Patrick’s popular Ebook, The
Ultimate Kids Guide to Happiness.
The line-up of speakers is incredible and includes Bruce Lipton,
PhD; Marianne Williamson; Bob Doyle; Marci Shimoff, Sonia
Choquette; Christine Carter, PhD, Shelly Lefkoe, Dr. Dan
Yachter…plus 16 more!
These leaders will cover current challenges such as child obesity;
child/teen depression; ADHD, autism and nutrition; how to help kids
do better in school…and solutions such as teaching kids the power
of their minds; emotional intelligence, character building,
positive parenting and so much more.
As you probably would agree, many parents and teachers are stressed
out and overwhelmed these days. This leaves its toll on kids and
Plus, statistics show childhood anxiety and depression levels are
rising at alarming rates.
Giving parents and teachers the strategies and tools to instill
optimism and self-confidence in their children and teens is the
mission of the Happier Kids Now Online Expo.
So don’t miss out. Grab your totally FREE Online Pass to this
amazing event – plus grab Patrick’s Ebook now!
Thursday, September 23, 2010
I hope your homeschool year is off to a good start. Here are some articles that might help you out:
Show off your pregnant belly, or disguise it for Halloween with these pregnant costume ideas, maternity costumes and Halloween ideas for pregnancy costumes. Being pregnant for Halloween gives women a unique opportunity to integrate the pregnant belly into their costume plans. In areas with a warmer climate, bare-bellied maternity costumes are available and in other areas, costumes must be made or tailored to accommodate the belly.
Monday, September 20, 2010
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
In the book “Give me Liberty” by Gerry Spence, which isn’t about parenting at all, it’s about freedom from the profit-driven clutches of corporations and governments, he says;
“Children, as persons, are entitled to the greatest respect. Children are given to us as free-flying souls, but then we clip their wings like we domesticate the wild mallard. Children should become the role-models for us, their parents, for they are coated with the spirit from which they came- out of the ether, clean, innocent, brimming with the delight of life, aware of the beauty of the simplest thing; a snail, a bud, a shadow in the garden. Children are the closest thing to angels.”Small children ’s minds clearly live less “in their body” than adults. Adults are acutely aware of their own bodies and minds – analyzing its sensations, thoughts and feelings. Kids rarely think of such things. Have you ever heard a child ask “Why do I do that?” They think more about the next fun experience. Sure, some kids may have physical sensitivities to certain fabrics, sounds or foods, but they don’t THINK about it, they just seek comfort. They experience feelings, but they don’t over-analyze them. They just seek happiness. Duh.
Instead of teaching kids OUR world view, we need to allow them to see the world through the eyes they were born with, and listen intently to what they're telling us.
Some people would have you believe that kids are selfish, sinful or naturally bad, in need of ‘training” but that couldn’t be further from the truth. At their essence, they are creators. Kids are givers. When people see “bad” in children, it’s a gross and self-centered misinterpretation of the child’s actions and NOT a representation of the child’s inner self. Parenting from a position that believes children are inherently evil will NEVER help a child to be their best, EVER. It’s a self-fulfilling prophesy. These people never see the true soul of their own children because they allow a preconceived notion to cloud their vision. So their children grow up doubting their own inner goodness, free from the responsibility or benefits of peaceful or happy relations because they believe that at their core, that they’re flawed. YOU are not flawed at the core. No matter what your religion has told you. You are infinitely perfect and every experience, no matter what your analytical mind has labeled it, just IS, and isn’t bad or good, it just IS. My favorite part of the audio version of Rhonda Byrne’s book The Secret is the sound of Lisa Nichols’ voice saying
“And your spirit is so big that it fills a room*”
(with a blissful giggle that brings out the irony in the idea that anyone could ever feel small or insignificant)
Life isn’t about forcing people to do what you want. It should be about fully experiencing (LIVING) every minute of whatever it means to you to be ALIVE, enjoying each experience and the fact that the people around you are also enjoying it. This includes your amazing children, experiencing them while allowing them to experience their own (paralell) reality.
I love how Maddy (7) asks so many questions. In 5 minutes she’s asked me a hundred. “Mom, what’s an errand?” I answered her, then she repeated it back to me in a question. “like if I said ‘I have to run an errand’ it means I need to go do something important somewhere else real quick?” and I confirmed her interpretation. I can’t imagine giving her a list of vocabulary words or asking her to write a sentence for every word on a list (which would be MY list, not hers) Talking, verbal communication, it’s one thing that makes us human, civilized. Why on earth are “schoolers” (not to be confused with scholars, whom I still respect) OK with the idea of interfering with the communication skills of a 7 yr old? How could anyone imagine that ANY list of words would ever meet my child’s need to understand the language in the world around her.
After our little conversation, she stews in her mind a bit, the wheels are turning and she asks me another random question “Did you and dad know each other when you were kids?” and a little later she says “I probably have to google this, but do you know if whales see the way people see?” I had no idea, but I made a mental note of the fact that she realizes the limitations of my knowledge and knows how to research) so we googled it. We never found the answer, because she got sidetracked by videos of whale songs.
Every question doesn’t need an answer. Sometimes questions just lead to more questions and it’s OK. Nothing in real life ever resembles an end-of-the-chapter test.
Birds fly, fish swim and humans learn. -John Holt
Her questioning takes a considerable amount of time every day. She usually hangs out with me in the evening when I’m cleaning the kitchen, grilling me on world history, US history, science, family history, word meanings and telling me all about her doll’s relationships, careers and lifestyles.
Last night, there was something stuck to the burner- I’d wiped it down earlier but I think I got something on it, so it was smoking up the kitchen and it smelled bad. I walk into the kitchen thinking “what the hell is wrong in here, yuck now I have to breathe this $#!+” but I didn’t say it because I was busy listening to her rattle on about something- a story about how our friend Nikki lost her first tooth (For the record, she bit into a taco shell when she was 7 . Nikkie & Maddy share a birthday, and she’s really fun, so it makes Maddy feel special to have her as a friend and Maddy wants to lose her tooth on a taco shell now, so we’re having tacos for dinner)
Anyway, so I keep it to myself- about the smoke- and she walks through the door right behind me. You’d think she just opened the door to the Emerald City of Oz and wasn’t sure if she wanted to go home or not. “MOM- there are a million fairies in the air,” she says, in a lowered voice, lest she break the spell. She points out the sun rays piercing through a thinner patch of smoke and suddenly she’s overcome, enchanted; she’s a fairy. Her arms are raised in bliss and her head is tilted up to the receive the light, and she’s slowly spinning and humming, like angels were singing to her in her head.
To her, the smoky kitchen is beautiful, an amazing thing of wonder. To me, she is the thing of wonder. She’s soaking up the wonder and feeding it right back to me. How can anyone think kids are bad? There’s no bliss quite like experiencing the world through the lens of a child.
*”We often get distracted with this thing called our body and our physical being. That just HOLDS your spirit. And your spirit is so big it fills a room. You are eternal life. You are God manifested in human form, made to perfection.”- Lisa Nichols, The Secret
Monday, September 13, 2010
Whereby I rattle on about how awesome 2-yr-olds are (again)
Evelyn likes doing whatever I do. I love seeing myself through her eyes, as we discover her passions together. She can make the most mundane tasks seem like a grand occupation. There is a ritual to dish washing that apparently I’ve never examined deeply enough until now.
Terrible two's are a myth
It begins with verifying that there’s a towel to dry them with. That amount of forethought was the first thing that impressed me about her approach to the task. So we gathered our drying towel, and then cleared the counter. She looks forward to the “soapy water” part of the job, but she knows we need to start with the end in mind. I’m impressed that she’s mastered a life skill that I still find challenging – having a precise goal. And I’m supposed to be teaching her? What a backward philosophy.
Once the towel and counter are prepared, our real dialog begins. She wants to wash the dishes NOW. I want to clean the sink first. It just doesn’t seem right to wash dishes in a dirty sink. Someone dripped milk on the side, some ketchup, a smashed tomato, a piece of peach skin, spit out in disgust. I cleaned the sink while she was explaining to me how to proceed. “I have my sponge, you need to put warm water on it and squirt me some soap in the middle right there, give me soap mom I am ready now please ok mom”
Finally the sink was scrubbed down. I still needed to rinse, but I could do that while I’m getting her sponge wet. And I did- she didn’t catch me stalling because she was explaining to me which dish she was going to wash first, and teling me that she wouldn’t wash the “knifesis because they are sharp.” I sometimes wish I could record her all day long just to share the delicious sound of her voice with the less fortunate (you know, people who don’t have 2 yr olds in the house). When she says the word “are” and “sharp” she has a little Boston accent: “They aoaohhh shahhp.” I think I can safely split all 6 of my kids into 2 groups The ones that sound like they’re from New York when they’re two and the ones that sound like they’re from Boston.
Anyway- we continue that way, discussing very aspect of dish washing. from the selection of the next dish to be washed, all the way through determining how much soap should go on the sponge, to techniques to make your soap last longer. Y’know, because if you dip your sponge in the water it washes your soap away.
We washed a sinkful of dishes together, at one point she said “Mommy you are so good at this.” I said “thank you honey, you’re good at this, too. Are you having fun?” She said “yes, I’m so glad you’re having fun mommy” and then we discussed some other things we like to do together, like picking tomatoes in the garden, eating tomatoes in the garden, picking peppers in the garden and eating peppers in the garden, picking and eating grapes, picking flowers, saying hello to the chickens, folding laundry, brushing the dog… Being with her is so pure and natural.
She’s truly a gift in that she amplifies the beauty in everyday life. She’s like an enhancing lens, or some badass photoshop brush that just makes all the magic in the world stand out. AND- she thinks I’m awesome.
Saturday, September 11, 2010
So the other day, Emilee (16) carries a very limp & teary-eyed Grace (4) into my bedroom where I’m working and says “Mom, Grace is sad.” So I stopped working and held her in my arms and asked her why she was sad. She explained, with Emilee’s help, how it bothers her that Maddy (7) always wins. She was so very sad about it, so we tried to help her think of things she’s good at, so she can beat Maddy. She was amused with our suggestions, but ultimately rejected each one, including “nose picking” and “being 4″ and “jumping over floor tiles” These are things we know she’s proud of.
In the end, she came up with her own ideas, “a race” and “tying people up” and “making homemade band aids.”
Madelyn wouldn’t even compete in the tying people up category, which made grace a winner by default. The look of joy & pride on Grace’s face when she beat Maddy at making homemade band-aids was priceless and I suspect Maddy let her win the race, when she realized what was going on.
Around here, we’re not much into competitive sports, where other people make up the rules. And we’re definitely not the types that wake up at the crack of dawn to drive the kids out to a field to play. I prefer that the kids engage in activities that encourage them to be their personal best, rather than focus on “beating others.”
In principle, I’d let them participate in group sports, but in realty, it hasn’t happened. Sign-up dates have often eluded us, as this information gets sent home with kids at school. I’ve often wondered why these groups (soccer clubs, little league, etc..) don’t have more informative websites. I don’t make much of an effort to find out about these things because I’m not interested in attending practice 2-3 times a week or sitting in the sun or wind at 8am on a Saturday while they play.
Yes, competition is a natural part of life. Yes, competition is healthy and normal. No, we don’t need to invent situations where kids can experience arbitrary competition. Life presents plenty of natural opportunities to experience competition, without expensive uniforms, ongoing repetitive “championship rounds” or anything like that. Rivals can (and should) be friends, always. There’s more to competition than warfare.
Arbitrary rules of competition set kids up to live by the other people’s definition of success, instead of creating their own happiness. This might work well for people who define success by keeping up with their neighbors, but around here, we have different expectations.
I expect my kids to excel exactly as much as they wish, at whatever they choose to be a worthy exploit. I expect that they are in tune with their own inner longings, and find it easy to decide what games they’ll compete in and whether or not they intend to win, or just want to play. I trust that the activities they choose and the decisions they’re making today are part of their ultimate identity, something I would never dream of influencing or “shaping,” to do so would be blasphemous.
Friday, September 10, 2010
If you haven't heard of unschooling, it's awesome. Here are some of the most recent posts from The Organized Unschooler that are sure to spark your interest:
Thursday, September 9, 2010
Aunt Wilma and Uncle Earl have been having a heck of a time lately. It's unfortunate, really. He fell off of his riding lawnmower when he was reaching for his can of beer. He likes to get drunk while he's mowing and we all know that drinking and driving don't mix. He fell off the mower and broke his leg. The mower ran over his foot, too so one of his toes got crushed. I think there should be a sticker on the mower that tells people not to wear flip-flops while they're mowing. Uncle Earl has to wear them because of his fungus, bit it's really not a smart thing to do. I'm sure if he'd been wearing protective foot gear he wouldn't have been injured that way.
At least we're not blood related, right?
This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of Boost Mobile. All opinions are 100% mine.
After my teenage daughter racked up $350 in text messages, I decided that I really need to get her on some kind of unlimited plan. Except, I didn't want to sign another contract. Freelancers need to be really careful about getting into contracts. If a lean month comes along, I can't be collecting a bunch of late fees, know what I mean. Not that my daughter's phone would be first on the list of bills I'd choose not to pay, but you never know. She could end up at the cell phone shop signing her own contract one day and I'd be stuck with hers in addition to mine, y'know.
Anyway- what we found, after considerable research, was so awesome that when our contract expired, we ended up switching the whole family over. Have you heard of Boost? Here's the deal (and they have a few) We get unlimited text, unlimited Internet, unlimited incoming AND outgoing calls, for around $55 a month. And the best part is, no contract. That's become important for my husband and I, too. Since we both work from home, we only really NEED an extra phone when we travel, so we can get a hold of one another. We don't need 2 phones on a daily basis. So we have our normal, official phone and when we travel, we just buy a month's service for the extra phone. It's so easy. My teenagers do chores to earn their phones. Since I work from home, I need someone to help manage the littler ones while I work. i also need someone to help clean the house so that when I stop working, I don't have to simply start doing housework. I find that I can make enough money with 3 hours of childcare each month, to pay for the kids' phones and I absolutely LOVE that they have the freedom to use them as much as they want without worrying that the bill will get out of hand.
Paying for them is so easy. We can get a Re-Boost card for various dollar amounts and pay at the checkstand at the grocery store. We can also call from our phones and pay with a debit, credit or Visa gift card. I can also pay it online or go to the BoostMobile counter at the mall. It's just so easy. And if it's late, it doesn't matter. They turn it off, but once it's reinstated, it's "live" for a whole 'nother month, they don't bill you for the time it was off. Another company did that to me once, because I had a contract. There's nothing quite as rude as kicking someone while they're down.
I love that I have the freedom to check my email, or update my Twitter or check my Facebook from my phone. Especially because I work online, but I don't like to be stuck at home. This way, I can stay in touch with my "work world" while enjoying my kids, or, more accurately, waiting to pick them up :) if you know me, you know I like to update my Facebook with silly things I see around town, especially sharing photos, it's so much fun.
I just have a simple flip phone, but I'm thinking of upgrading to the Blackberry. I used to have one and I loved it. If you're a technology geek, you'll be glad to know they have a lot of cool phones. Check out the Blackberry phone details and the Blackberry plan detais to see exactly how much you can save with Boost. You might also want to check out the i1 phone details and the i1 plan details
The freedom of no commitments is absolutely priceless, but Boost Mobile doesn't take advantage of that. I bet the company saves money by not having contracts, too. What could be simpler? THIS is what cell phone service should look like. And yeah- they sponsored this post, but honestly, I leaped at the chance to share our story and YOU should leap at the chance to get out of that lame contract and live the simple life.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
You totally have to enter this contest. You can win $10,000 for a remodel. Stylemyhouse is a website that has an excellent newsletter for homeowners. They're having a drawing at the end of the month, so get over there and enter the contest ASAP
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Just read a free ebook The Ultimate Kids Guide to Happiness. It was awesome u can get yrs here Happier Kids now
Also, here's an article about how to promote your homeschool blog or website.
And here's a list of homeschooling publications, like magazines and newsletters you can check out, in case you want to subscribe or write for them.
edited- I just noticed the last two links are wrong, they're switched around, sorry. I'll fix it when I get home.