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...]

Interfaith Marriage and Interfaith Parenting: A Reader Asks

interfaith

A reader recently emailed me with some questions and I thought you all might be able to help him out. First I'll quote from his emails (he has given me permission to do so) and then I'll give some guidance for your responses. I married my Baptist wife while I was still searching within Christianity. I was enjoying going to a Presbyterian church in Tulsa because the sermons the pastor preached were often from a viewpoint that I hadn't heard in the version of Christianity¬†I experienced growing … [Read more...]

Why I Let My Children Eat (Almost) Whatever They Want

kid

I wrote recently about why I give my daughter Sally unrestricted access to her Halloween candy, and that generated some interesting discussion as people reminisced about their own childhoods or explained their own parenting decisions. But one comment, left by a reader named Brandy, got me thinking about teaching children about healthy eating.¬†Brandy offered this concern: I guess I am struggling with this because of my own past. I was brought up with full access to junk food. My Halloween candy … [Read more...]

Let’s Talk about Halloween Candy

candy

When I was a child, we didn't do trick-or-treating, but we did go to our church's harvest festival each year, which means we children did end up with piles of candy. Each year my parents put all of that candy up where we couldn't get it and let us eat it for only one half hour each Saturday over the next couple of weeks, until it was gone. This was a terrible idea. Not only did it reinforce that nothing was really ever ours, it also meant that every Saturday for a month we would cram ourselves … [Read more...]


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