How Come Parents Never Talk About Parenting?

I met a fellow father this morning for tea and we chatted about what we were working on and shared the ups and downs of fatherhood, but afterwards it struck me that we didn’t talk about parenting itself. We talked about being parents and about our children, yes, but not about parenting. So I spent today thinking about the difference, and then just happened to get a message from a new reader who asked “what…Read More

Another reason to be suspicious of parenting book authors

Ever wandered into the “parenting” section of your local bookstore, just to be amazed at how many different books there are on the shelf? You name it, from books that have Dads sharing sneaky and underhanded tricks they did as boys (presumably the book isn’t intended as a primer for my son!) to books that are stories about crazy things that happen in the hospital delivery room (including my favorite: A woman who went to…Read More

Scholastic succumbs to the siren song of corporate sponsorship of education

If you’ve been to a public school lately, you can’t help but notice the Taco Bell and Pizza Hut signs in the cafeteria, the Pepsi machines in the hallway, the Harry Potter posters in the library and the Bratz book covers, all “to make school a better place”. Now one of the last bastions of children’s publishing has clearly been unable to resist the urge to shove their own advertising down the throats of our…Read More

What would you suggest to this tired Mom?

A few days ago we received a comment on one our discussions from a “tired mom” who related a situation that I suspect we can all sympathize with as tired, tapped out parents who don’t have the resources to always be perky and engaged with our children. We’ve since gone back and forth a couple of times, but I thought that the collective wisdom of the Attachment Parenting community might offer even more great ideas….Read More

What dreams have you dreamt today?

Living in a college town with a university known for its sports teams — the University of Colorado, Boulder — is mostly a benefit. Sometimes traffic near the university can be a bit out of control, but we have a great bus system here to compensate. There are some very interesting upsides, too, however, one of which I encountered just a week or so ago when I took my family out to the local “Old…Read More

Vaccinations and the fear of getting sick

Maybe it’s just me, but we seem to live in a society where people are getting more and more afraid of being sick. There are billions spent on finding vaccines for even the most benign illnesses and a shortage of flu vaccine is treated as a national health emergency and shows up as the cover story in all the major news magazines.Read More

The challenge of being The Toy Police during the Holidays

An interesting thing happened upon opening our Hanukkah presents a few days ago… our son and daughter were given cute, if somewhat wacky, slippers from a relative who knew that we do our best to avoid visible, overt characters and brands on our toys. When we looked, however, we realized that the slippers were Hello Kitty and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. We were surprised, needless to say!Read More

Eventually, just about every kid has homework

Unless you’re one of the few who practice unschooling, there will come a time when your kids are going to have homework from school and are going to need assistance from you to complete the assignment. In the earlier grades it’s fun but as they proceed in the years, the material becomes more sophisticated and, frankly, harder.Read More

The essence of good toys

Every year we have the same challenge, trying to identify what toys and games we can purchase for our children that aren’t junky, horribly, ugly, plastic trash (obviously, that’s a value judgment. 🙂 One place I thought I’d start this year was with, since they have a huge range of toys and games, and with partners like Toys R Us, I figured they’d have a good organization too.Read More

Giving up on Privacy as part of Parenting

It’s not news to anyone who is a parent that when wee folk are afoot your sense of privacy has to be modified, somewhat forcefully. It’s not so much that you can’t have privacy, it’s more that you need to redefine privacy to encompass the new members of your family.Read More

Five million reasons per year to discourage your kids from smoking

Our children are still a bit young to worry about this, but I was shocked to read a report from the BBC that documents research from Harvard University and the University of Queensland where they calculated that almost 5,000,000 people were killed in the year 2000 from smoking. Yes, you read that right, five million people in one year.Read More

On Halloween, the Candy Fairy Visited Our House!

While I’d like to think that I’m not a complete curmudgeon, I have to admit that many of the most popular holidays in the United States aren’t ones that I enjoy or particularly want my children to participate in. For example, I’ve already written about how Mother’s Day is a bit daft – see Happy Mother’s Day? – because people should be thankful of each other every day, but given the time of year, the…Read More

A house full of sick children

Is there anything more difficult to handle than when all of your kids get sick at the same time? Maybe: not only are our kids all sick, but we’re both sick too. It’s “just a cold”, but I haven’t been sick in bed for two days since, well, I don’t even remember when.Read More

More Dads are spending more time with their children

I won’t say that I’m startled by this data, but I am pleasantly surprised that BusinessWeek (of all publications) has a report exploring how fathers are spending more time with their families and less at work. Indeed, they cite data that suggests there are plenty of men now who are willing to eschew promotions in return for the ability to have a more flexible schedule…Read More

Are all children inveterate collectors?

As a father, it’s hard to know how unique your kids are versus all the other similarly-aged children in the world. It’s kind of the problem that Garrison Keillor pokes fun at when he talks about the fictional world of Lake Woebegon, where everyone is “above average”, but applied to individual behaviors. Be that as it may, I’m convinced that my kids collect more stuff, more often, than any other kids in our neighborhood.Read More

How loud is too loud? How much should children be protected?

One of the basic tenets of attachment parenting, as far as I can tell, is that childhood is a time to be protected, a time to be nurtured, and a time to grow within a safe and sheltered environment. Not to some obsessive degree, necessarily (though some people seem to go to extremes, as with anything else in life), but the idea is really that children should be allowed to have a childhood. There are…Read More

A Conference to Attend: Waldorf in the Home

If you’re even curious about attachment parenting, you should already own a copy of Rahima Baldwin Dancy’s excellent book You Are Your Children’s First Teacher. What you might not know about Rahima, though, is that she hosts a couple of excellent AP/Waldorf conferences each year and this year, this October to be specific, she’s hosting Waldorf in the Home at Shining Mountain Waldorf School in Boulder, Colorado.Read More

Our long-term birth control option of choice: a vasectomy

To some extent, birth control might seem like a rather oblique topic for a site discussing attachment parenting, but to me, there’s no topic more central to the issue of parenting than parents figuring out how big their family should be and coming up with a healthy, compatible and comfortable solution for continuing an intimate relationship after that point. More to the point, it’s been something that the two of us have wrestled with since…Read More