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Birthday 9: Walking the Labyrinth

  Every year, either the day before or the day of my son's birthday, he walks the labyrinth just west of the library in downtown Boulder. It's a ritual we began several years ago as a way to commemorate his passage from one year to the next. In a culture sadly devoid of rituals, we've attempted to create some of our own so that our sons can anchor themselves in time through the concrete marking of milestones. And as most rituals focus on a death and rebirth process, we intentionally help our kids focus on what they want to let go of and what they're hoping to grow... read more

Would You Let Your 9-Year-Old Shave Her Legs?

  By Suzanne Leigh     My 9-year-old daughter was examining her legs. “Why do I have this?” she said, pointing to the fine hair that was starting to sprout around her shins.   “Oh, that’s normal. All girls start to get that, especially as they get closer to their teens,” I said.   “Will it go away when I’m a grown up?”   “Actually no, the hair can get thicker as you get older. Adult women have hair on their legs and their underarms,” I explained, wondering whether mentioning the pubic area would be TMI at that particular moment.   Marissa looked... read more

The Price We Pay to Stay "Connected"

  As a child born in the mid 70’s, my generation has witnessed a pretty radical lifestyle shift due to technological advances. It is a transformation that will no doubt continue to insert itself further and further into our lives with the development of each new “must have” gadget. It begs the question – are these things really “must have” items?   I grew up with a hand-me-down walkman, and my first one speaker boom box with a shoulder strap (which I thought was the greatest thing ever!) wasn’t bestowed upon me until the 5th grade. My parents didn’t get... read more

First steps: a stay at home mother faces letting go

  While we were living in England last year, my husband Jake got a black eye playing rugby and I photographed the progression of his bruise during the week that followed. So, when our daughter Maren fell off her scooter and got her first shiner - in the very same spot as her dad's! - we all thought it'd be fitting to take photos of her bruise as it changed. But what began as a silly set of photographs, ended up revealing much more.                                                                                                                         ... read more

Sexy Little Girls

The sexualization of young girls seems to be a disturbing trend in this country, and it leaves me deeply concerned about the types of things that will be marketed to my daughter as she gets older. Sadly, I didn't even have to wait that long to discover inappropriate girls clothing, while searching for my daughter's first bathing suit. I was shocked that a leopard print string bikini was being sold for girls ages ONE through five. When I was a kid, my one piece suits had rainbows and hearts on them. Not that those suits don't still exist, but I found my brow... read more

Why This Mom Can't Bear Back-to-School Season

  By Suzanne Leigh   “Back-to-School Specials!!!” scream the store placards. They are a reminder that now might be the time to get a discounted backpack for my younger daughter, but more potently they nudge me back to my default: the bereaved mom aching for the child that will always be dead. My elder daughter had loved school and if we had dodged that brain tumor bullet, she would now be eager for eighth grade. At her school, students aren’t allowed to use the “h” word, but I think I am: I hate school. Not because of the curriculum, the students or the... read more

Transitional Mom: Becoming a Mother of Two

By Sarah Scott   When my son was born five months ago, I expected to be a seasoned, confident mother. I had been mothering his sister for four years, after all, so I thought I had this parenting thing down. And, in some ways, I did feel more sure of myself. I skipped over many of the blunders and anxieties that I experienced as a first time mom. But, in one very important way, I was a new parent. I was learning to be a mother of two.                      In the first weeks, this learning curve was steep and intense. On the good days, I felt like I was clawing my... read more

Teaching Kids to Love and Trust Themselves

By Sheryl Paul   Yesterday I took my sons to observe a Parkour class. I had never heard of Parkour until my husband pointed out that Everest has been doing it naturally around our house. I watched a few videos on it and thought, “Why not? Let’s give it a try.” It’s a street art that combines gymnastics, running, and leaping to create a Ninja-like, monkey-esque crazy amazing physical experience. My boys love watching it, are compelled to do it, and so it seemed like it could be a natural fit.   My current parenting motto is, “Go where the yes is.” I know... read more

Forget the Mommy Wars: Finding and Sharing the Love Online

The online universe can be pretty daunting, particularly when it comes to mom on mom judgment. If you haven’t personally experienced it, then I’m sure you’ve seen it – the snarky, self-righteous comments, usually ending with a winking emoticon to try to offset the irritation level. Moms can be downright brutal to one another, and with the world at your fingertips to judge you, things can often go downhill fast in posts or comments. However, I think the positives outweigh the negatives. I have found there’s a lot of love out there too, and many kind women willing to... read more

Is Farm to School Enough? My 92 Cents

Do we want to simply feed kids better food at school or do we want to empower them to make better choices outside of school?  The best part of farm to school education is that you can start today!   I recently had the privilege of attending the Farm to School Summit in La Crosse, Wisconsin  with a great group of health educators, school food service workers and more from Transform Rock County.  I am really glad to have had the opportunity to see the exciting progress that folks in the La Crosse area have made with bringing fresh, local food into their school... read more

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