“I Just Don’t Ask Them for Anything, Ever”

Girl

I was watching the movie Tangled with my family when we came to the scene where Repunzel is nervously trying to get up the courage to ask her mother (who is actually her abductor, though she does not know that) if she can go and see the lights on her birthday. I turned to my teenage sister Hope and whispered to her."Do you ever feel like that when you want to ask mom and dad something?""Yeah, so I just don't ask them for anything, ever," she whispered back.In many ways, my parents … [Read more...]

Sally, Sean’s Wallet, and Moral Ethics

wallet

When we go grocery shopping, I generally let Sally choose something small for herself. On a recent trip, Sally made a choice that was more expensive than the price range I generally ask her to stick to. I could have had her put it back, but I could see she was entranced, so instead I put back the little marshmallows for hot chocolate and a few other things."Sally, since you wanted that little doll, I had to put some things back," I told her in the car. "So we didn't get the little … [Read more...]

Modern Girlhood and Candy Land’s Sweet Poison

comparison

Raising a daughter in today's world is hard. We like to think of ourselves as light years ahead of the 1950s in terms of gender equality, but sometimes I don't see it. And, lately, Candy Land has been one of those places. I am so incredibly thankful that my husband's grandparents gifted us their old Candy Land board, because otherwise I would be scouring ebay for one. When I played Candy Land growing up, we had the 1984 version.Then, in 2004, the game was updated.With this … [Read more...]

In Which Sally Talks to Adults

playing

We'd only been at the get-together five minutes when I realized that my daughter Sally was engaged in a romping game of tag with a twenty-something family friend of my in-laws. At Sally's instigation, the game soon turned to hide and seek, and Sally was giggling under a table while her new friend was walking around the table pretending to not be able to find her.This is not the first time this has happened. When Sean had some of his friends over for a cookout last summer, Sally was quickly … [Read more...]

And Bobby Wore Heels

dress shoes

I was getting ready to check out at the second-hand children's clothing shop when I realized I had a problem. When we had first arrived at the store Bobby had brought me a pair of white heeled girls' dress shoes just his size and had asked me to put them on him (he doesn't really have words yet, but that doesn't mean he can't communicate!). So I had, and he'd been running around in them with smiling from ear to ear ever since. And now that it was time to go, well, now he wouldn't let me take … [Read more...]

When God Took a Journey in a Cave

storytelling

We were walking to the car one night when Sally commented on the stars."Do you what makes them stay up there?" I asked her."God put them there!" Sally exclaimed."Who is God?" This was the first time I'd heard her use the term."God is Jesus," she replied."But what is God?""Mom!" Sally exclaimed. "God is just his name! He has two names, God and Jesus!""Well, then how did he put the stars in the sky?""I will tell you the story," Sally responded with a smile, and her … [Read more...]

No Spanking Necessary

reading book

I was nervous. Bobby is a year old now, and fast on his feet. He loves watching his sister Sally in her dance class. Usually we stay outside the room and watch through a long window, and I hold him up to see. But one day a semester, the parents are invited to sit in on the class to watch. Sally was excited to have us in the room. There was a slightly inset area that ran along one side of the room, with space for folding chairs and a bit of room around them. But how in the world was I to sit … [Read more...]


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