NOVEMBER '05 Mamas' and Babies' December 08 thread - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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Old 12-08-2008, 01:15 PM
 
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Here is a photo of the prints we made for our card/book this year. I designed/carved the one on the left, and Matt did the one on the right. I don't usually have much to do with the writing, but get involved in the book design and sewing/binding.

This is the fifth year that we've done one- the first year it was a short story about a man who goes for a run in the first snow every winter and celebrates a wife who died. The following year there was a poem about helicopters that bring Santa and play Christmas carols, as was the tradition from the air force base near the town we grew up. The year Neela was born we published a collection of poems that friends had written celebrating her and her birth. Last year Matt wrote a poem that melded the traditions we experienced living with our Israeli neighbours, and their first experience of snow in Oregon. This year is a sestina imagining the birth of a second child to Joseph and Mary, complete with Jesus as a bratty toddler and much more practical gifts, like pomegranates.
I finally just got to look at this Mel - it's beautiful! They sound so cool, and I love this year's story!

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Old 12-08-2008, 03:12 PM
 
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Ahem. Some of us are NOT American, and still happy to be so, in spite of the sudden turn-around in who-has-the-crappy-politicians status.

But I agree in principle. The point of the holiday festivities is to provide an inward, warming, community focus when the outside world is gloomy, dark and cold, and to get through the darkest point of winter together. Whether that be with the returning light of the sun, the light of the Son of God, or the light of a menora (I'm sorry, I am really very ignorant about Jewish traditions - what does the menora represent?) or whatever other light/community-based tradition, as long as whatever you do fits into that somehow, I think it's all good. (Buying tons of stuff? er, not so much.)

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Old 12-08-2008, 03:17 PM
 
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I've been reading along and find all this very interesting. I'm a Christian and thus have never been in the position many of you are describing - thank you for sharing your journey and perspectives!

Speaking of the holidays, I need to get to work on some present-stuff. We always order calendars of the kids as gifts for grandparents and other relatives and I need to get started on a Christmas quilt for my parents.

Mama to DS (05/04) and DD (11/05), married to a wonderful DH.
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:29 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, I have a few minutes to reply to earlier stuff because we're home from school again (Woody contracted a cold on top of what I *suspect* [despite the pediatrician's denial] is whooping cough, so his gunk output has increased 10-fold and so has his gagging on it and throwing up). Please, please, y'all, say a few words on our behalf to whatever universal power or cosmic luck that you believe in that all this clears up before little baby arrives in mid January... : Speaking of which...4 weeks and 6 days, folks!!! This pregnancy has gone by ridiculously fast. I'm trying to stay in the moment as much as possible, considering how few of those moments of our lives are blessed with being full of child.

Mel, those prints are stunning. I am so in love with the pomegranate design. I learned the most basic book making skills this year from my co-teacher, and I would love to borrow your idea of making an annual family book! But the wood carved prints--you wowed me there, mama!

Gunter, thank you so much for posting that beautiful description of Hillary's play!! I so wish we all could have gone. Jen, those pictures were too cute! And Gunter, I was loving Ezra's cutie-pie purple cord jumper.

Amy, how seredipitous! The speech pathologist job seems like such a great fit right now, and I can vouch for the many benefits of working at your child's school. Good luck with the emergency certification.

Happy birthdays to Winter, Ngaio, and Brynn!
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Old 12-08-2008, 04:14 PM
 
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so, add me to the list of people who wanted to re-post and hash out what we were trying to get words around.

i realized that i posted about how i don't like the mass consumerism and then in the next breath said how much i like gift giving. hopefully, it's clear in general that i stalk etsy for handmade vs. step foot in walmart. if that makes any difference in giving handmade handpicked gifts or even experiences...like a massage!

kavita- i agree with you about how the birth of jesus is way intriguing now that i am a mama and a doula! i find myself seeking more of the actual details about how the birth went down. glad to know i am not the only one out here who wonders how long mary was in active labor.

i spent one december in dharamsala, inida (where the dalai lama is in exile). i went to a catholic mass with buddhist monks and then spent dec 25th in an italian restaurant called "nick's" listening to little tibetan kids sing carols and a really large woman belt out, "what the world needs now...is love, sweet love!". a friend and i chopped a little tree down from behind our apartment using a kitchen knife and a brick. then, we hung it with rope from the rafters in our apartment to surprise our friends on christmas eve. we did a gift exchange and i got this knit hat (that was meant for someone else) when i really wanted a book that a lama wrote about his experience being trapped in chinese occupied tibet. the book was gifted to my other friend and i was selfish and sad about not getting it for myself. later that day, i found it lying on my bed signed by the lama and all, just for me. and, i gave the hat to our other friend who it was actually made for. i still have a picture of it on my wall of me with 10 friends and DH at a table. that was the best time of our life together. such a great christmas time. if i ever had to pick a "go back in time moment", it would be that time. i gotta stop writing before i start weeping.

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Old 12-08-2008, 04:25 PM
 
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Ahem. Some of us are NOT American,
Oh Spughy - I didn't mean that Christmas is only American! I just meant that all these crazy Christmas traditions are predominant in America during winter time, so being Americans, it's not totally outrageous to incorporate them into your life, Christian or not. Sorry if I didn't make that point well!!

HoneyTree, sounds dreadful! I hope all the germs are gone before the babe arrives!!

Gunter, that sounds amazing. Your life and experiences are book-worthy, ya know?

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Old 12-08-2008, 06:53 PM
 
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How did I not find this thread until the 8th? Sorry for being so late to the party (especially after having just joined in last month).

Gunter, that experience sounds amazing.

I love the discussion of religious/solstice/holiday celebrations. DH and I are muddling through with so much baggage it is hard to find something that fits right now. We have a tree, but don't go to church. We have Christmas books family gave to us and the kids, but I find myself dodging reading the ones explaining the story of Jesus' birth in favor of ones about Santa, Frosty, winter, snow, etc. Not sure why. I need to figure that one out.

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Old 12-08-2008, 09:12 PM
 
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Gunter. Thank you so much for your too-kind words. I am so touched that you were there to share the experience with me. It was such a joy to meet you, and to meet you, too, Jenn.

I am loving this holiday discussion and will jump in with what little I may have to add soon...am just recovering from the trip, a sick Finley (who is well now), and then a yoga teacher-training week (20 hours of yoga!), and have a very messy chaotic house. So...as soon as I can breathe and think again, I will be back in the discussion! Reading along as I can, and sending warm winter wishes of love and peace to all!
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Old 12-08-2008, 09:47 PM
 
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Wow, so the whole Montessori-holiday-policy thing took a turn for the crazy today. Jason told me that the Christian dad I mentioned in my first post about this emailed the director of the school (the same person trying to hire me) and CC'ed Jason (*hopefully* BCC) saying that he didn't understand why these five holidays - which I think were Chistmas, Hannukah, Winter Solstice, St. Lucia, and Kwaanza - were chosen, and that some of these were in "direct conflict" with christianity, and *futhermore* HE doesn't know of *anyone* who celebrates things like Solstice and Kwaanza!!!!!!!! :

I guess they exchanged several emails, the gist of which being that the director said that she would be happy to work with them to accomodate their wishes (but basically, they are not going to like change the entire philosophy of the school for his sake) and him basically saying that wasn't good enough. I didn't read the emails myself but Jason said that the tone of his emails to her were very confrontational.

I'm just kind of in shock here about all of this AND rather annoyed that he's CC'ing Jason on all of this, like we're going to agree with him? I'm SO hoping his wife read my blog from yesterday (she does read it from time to time) and they see how ridiculously naive they are in thinking no one around here observes anything other than Christmas!

And I'm kind of wondering, how do we keep being friends with these people?

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Old 12-08-2008, 09:58 PM
 
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Um, do you still WANT to be friends with these people? How close were you? I mean, I'm guessing if ya'll were having dinner together every week and playdates and stuff they would know you better by now. If they're just casual friends, then it probably won't be too hard to just... slip out of touch a bit, especially if they're going to pull out of the school.

The biggest debate this year at my kids' hippie school was whether or not we're going to try to align the school calendar in order to celebrate the change of seasons and the cycles of the moon. (We decided maybe it would be more complicated than beneficial and it kind of fell by the wayside with financial difficulties the school is going through due to decreased enrollment.)

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Old 12-08-2008, 10:41 PM
 
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Amy, you should have a solstice party and invite them. And all your other non-Christian friends, but no other Christians. Just for a little, y'know, perspective.

Jen, your school sounds awesome.

SeekingJoy - I think it's hard to talk to kids about the "facts" about Christmas because it's hard to do it without feeling like you're indoctrinating them somehow. I know I've been really reluctant to talk to Rowan about it because I don't want to be promoting a faith to her that I don't share. Does that make sense? It's silly, because I sing christmas carols to her every night to get her to sleep. (Only because I know the words to them... I suck at remembering lyrics to most songs.)

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:07 AM
 
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clearly, this guy has unrealistic expectations. and, they are totally misplaced in directing them towards the school.

i think the reason he sees you and jason as friends is b/c of your tolerance and respect for things outside of your own personal belief system. and, it would do us all well to be more like you two. we cannot let his intolerance (and ignorance/rudeness/anger) make us intolerant of (rude to/angry at) him. as hard as that is to not do!

i like how these posts are causing us to consider our own beliefs and where they stem from! like, what are the "facts" of christmas, anyway? there are different traditions mushed together from the tree to the presents under it to it even being jesus' actual birthday. (and, that's just talking about mainstream christmas.) someone has already mentioned the tradition of the tree. perhaps the presents have something to do with the gifts presented to jesus after his birth but we're way off from that now, clearly. it's not true that jesus was born on dec 25th. it is true that is when many people celebrate it though.

spughy- maybe you can point the those out to her or say, "some people" do this. there are so many things that we have to explain to our kids that we have no part of and even disagree with, right? maybe we're so used to doing that b/c we're vegetarians...or nurse longer than some of her friends...or don't let our babes CIO and have had to explain those things over and over as other people's choices which are not ours. also, we read books which may not be factual and kids enjoy them so maybe santa is a story and that's it? we're struggling here with it and how to convey it to a 3 year old when we cannot wrap our own heads around everything even.

some christians are really narrow minded and some are worse than narrow minded. they cause harm in their closed ideologies. but let's not let this guy ruin it for everyone. i personally would be upset to hear of my friend not inviting me to a solstice party just b/c i identify myself as a chrisitan. (we celebrate our version of that, in our house, too.) it would really hurt my feelings to be excluded just like the hurt we are all talking about here in how mainstream american decembers can make people feel. we have to be stronger than all that just like we are strong in our attached parenting, our intentions to have gentle births, etc. we have to be good examples; like gandhi said 'being the change we wish to see in the world".

since we're ranting a bit....want to know one of mine about winter? it's about sexism, perhaps. why are all the 3 balls of snow called "snowmen"? where are the snowwomen? we have read/said "snowperson" for 3 years now but it bothers me that not a single reference is made otherwise.

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:40 AM
 
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why are all the 3 balls of snow called "snowmen"?
Because they have SNOW BALLS. ::

Sorry, I just couldn't help myself! Last year the one good snow we had wasn't enough for a decent snow human of any sort, so we ended up with a very small snow dog. It was almost like a snow Yorkie, disintegrating into a chihuahua! LOL!

Q of C--not to speak for Amy but the friends in question are through Jason's work--the DH's work together, if I am not mistaken. Which always makes it a little sticky to back out completely from a friendship gracefully . . . .

Gunter, I understood the intent of Spughy's solstice party more as a joke, just imagining this couple who is very intolerant of other religions/culture--to the point that not only do they believe that their religion is the best but that they don't think these other holidays are valid just because *they* don't happen to know anybody who celebrates them--in a party full of other people who DO celebrate these other traditions and belong to other religions. Just to sort of have the shoe on the other foot, for a different perspective! I mean, whatever your beliefs happen to be, what they are saying is a logical fallacy and a specious way of thinking--it's like me saying that I don't think that my child should learn anything in school about Finland, because *I* am not Finnish, and it must not be a valid or real country anyway because I've never met anybody from Finland.
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Old 12-09-2008, 01:43 AM
 
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Gunter, I understood the intent of Spughy's solstice party more as a joke, just imagining this couple who is very intolerant of other religions/culture--to the point that not only do they believe that their religion is the best but that they don't think these other holidays are valid just because *they* don't happen to know anybody who celebrates them--in a party full of other people who DO celebrate these other traditions and belong to other religions. Just to sort of have the shoe on the other foot, for a different perspective!
That's exactly what I meant - sorry it didn't come across this way! Gunter, don't worry, I have plenty of Christian friends and they are ALL invited to my solstice party I just thought that for someone who didn't think that other religions were relevant or represented in his area, attending a party of a friend, where all the other friends were non-Christian, would be instructive, in a sort of friendly way, kwim? The point wasn't excluding Christians for the sake of excluding Christians, although I can see how it could be construed as such and I'm sorry, and I'm fully aware that it's not wholly a *practical* idea.

And re: the explaining Christmas bit as something other people do/believe... I think that's probably what I will do, but it's complicated because DH and his family DO share that faith. In many ways it would be easy to just say "go ask your dad" but that seems like a cop-out to me. Plus, DH retained very little of his religious education and really can't be trusted when it comes to relating the tenets of Catholicism - I apparently know more about it than he does. We've had religious discussions that consist of me talking about basic Christian ideas like original sin and him going "really? It means THAT? Whoa." But back to Christmas - TBH it hasn't come up yet, Rowan is far more entranced with Rudolph than any other aspect of Christmas, and I expect this will be far more of a parent-trauma NEXT year.

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Old 12-09-2008, 12:39 PM
 
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Ahem. Some of us are NOT American, and still happy to be so, in spite of the sudden turn-around in who-has-the-crappy-politicians status.
This is a little off topic, but I'm amazed by how many people here seem to think they are American and have NO understanding of how the parliamentary system works. If they were paying attention, they would know that unless they live in his riding, they *didn't* vote for Harper, and his name wasn't on their ballot.

I'm lucky to have a husband who was raised Catholic but given an amazing, diverse religious education, so is very good at explaining the basic tenets of any major world religion. Neela's religious education (beyond just celebration) so far has been looking at the photos in an illustrated world religion book, and a little obsession with Joseph Campbell's "Way of Myth" that was a bedtime story for a couple weeks earlier this year.

I was raised thinking religion and spirituality are private matters. So I feel rather uncomfortable talking about it, and am prone to getting very confused.

We're having tears over frosty the snowman, so I need to go...

"Guess what? It's a magical world. And when I sing, my songs are in it."
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:54 PM
 
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We're aiming to give the amazing, diverse religious education. I am feeling guilty that my kids are missing out on all the pomp and circumstance that goes with a Christian Christmas over here though- I grew up only a few miles from Durham Cathedral, used to go to the Christmas services though I was raised a Methodist, and I miss that sense of wonder and all the traditions. We follow the celtic festivals as well, but right now our celebrations are all about family and community and yes, for us, it feels like there's a hole at the heart of it.

Kavita, I know someone from Finland, so you're OK there. Apparently we've had more snow this year than they have

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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Old 12-09-2008, 02:05 PM
 
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i think the reason he sees you and jason as friends is b/c of your tolerance and respect for things outside of your own personal belief system. and, it would do us all well to be more like you two. we cannot let his intolerance (and ignorance/rudeness/anger) make us intolerant of (rude to/angry at) him. as hard as that is to not do!
Exactly! I wouldn't consider them our BFFs or anything, but they are *friends* in the sense that they've come through for us in a pinch, and vice-versa, and they are extremely nice, well-intentioned, and giving people. So as tempted as I was last night to be like, "We can't be friends with them!" - the truth is, we'd be the pot calling the kettle black if this one issue caused us to extricate them from our lives. And, like Kavita said, Jason works with the dad, and sees him every day, and does consider him a good friend. Also, it has to be said that Jason is about a zillion times more even-keeled and socially generous than I am, so the thought never even occurred to him that their issue with the school (or religious beliefs in general) should have any influence on our relationship with them. One thing I will say is that Jason is really quite conscious about his own particular iteration of Christianity, which is that he tries to live the "love thy neighbor" aspect of it every day. I really have a lot of respect for him for that!

Speaking of diverse religious education, Helen, I was just thinking this morning that I would definitely like for us to find a church where we feel comfortable here so that Brynn can have a well-rounded exposure to different world beliefs. That's one thing I love about UU churches; they are so respectful of all world religions and don't push any one belief system. We just haven't found one here that we really fit into, but I might see if we can try one of them again.

In response to both Spughy and Gunter's posts about what and how to teach our kids, I have to laugh at us all a little bit in our complete *intentionality* of everything! We all do tend to take everything so seriously, ya know? But, for something as loaded as the holidays, it's really hard to just get on the band-wagon and not have a sense of *why* we're choosing to do this or that. Well, for me anyway.

Kavita: Finland. Hee

Mel, I too believe that spirituality/religion (AND political beliefs, for that matter) are private, but I feel supported enough here to be open about my feelings and confusion. I had this hilarious day-dream this morning about ALL of us sitting around at a coffee house talking about this stuff in person and how fun that would be! Wouldn't it be awesome to schedule a MDC-NovemberCon??!

And as for tears about Frosty - we are tears galore around here. I seriously feel for Jason because between me being pregnant and Brynn being 3, it's like living in a rationality-free zone! Tears, yelling, short tempers: we've got it all!

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Old 12-09-2008, 03:29 PM
 
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Amy, I will be happy to do a holiday celebration together. (I'll try emailing you from my yahoo account--for some reason I'm having problems with gmail, it won't let me type!!) Maybe a combo-Hanukkah/Solstice celebration or something? I was giving some thought to doing a little Hanukkah party at some point, actually . . . I always mean to do it but never do! My Hindu husband keeps me on the Jewish path, at least when it involves gastronomy--he really loves Potato Latkes and bugs me every year to make them! When we were dating and sort of "vetting" each other as possible marriage partners I took him to a service at a local synagogue. After the service they had an "oneg Shabbat" which is essentially like a little post-service reception in the social hall, where they usually do a blessing over the wine and challah (egg bread) and everyone gets a little bit of wine and bread, and then they serve some punch, coffee, cookies, little cakes, etc., and people mingle around and eat and talk and hang out. I don't know how much theology he got from that experience, but my now-DH was very excited about the prospect of marrying into a religion that involves free desserts. He's such a goof!

Oh, and by way spughy, since you (at least sorta) asked, here's an explanation for the menorah/candles/Hanukkah: First of all, the joke is that the basic explanation for all Jewish holidays is:
1. They tried to kill all the Jews.
2. They failed, and we survived.
3. Thank G-D! Let's eat!!!!!

Seriously though, the basic story about Hanukkah is that the menorah and the candles signify a religious miracle which is the basis for holiday. The Temple had an eternal light, which is supposed to be kept burning constantly. The Greeks ransacked and destroyed the temple, and all the vials of oil for the eternal light were destroyed and/or desecrated. There was only enough oil to burn for a day or two, but although someone was dispatched immediately to go get more oil, it would take eight days for them to go and come back with more oil. However, the oil that was only enough for one day burned for eight days, until the new oil arrived, and the light never went out. This is attributed to a miracle, and it's the reason that we burn candles each night for eight days--one candle is put in the menorah the first night, and two are put in the second night, etc., along with the "shamash" or helper candle which is the one higher than the other candles and is used to light the rest of the candles after a prayer is said. This also explains the latkes (and also jelly donuts which are traditional)--foods fried in oil are traditional at Hanukkah. The dreidl, which is a four-sided top that's used in a gambling game to play with, has four Hebrew letters on each side--roughly translated as NGHS, which is an acronym for "Nes Gadol Haya Sham" (if I'm remembering correctly), which means, "A Great Miracle Happened There." I think the basis for that is that the Greeks forbid the Jews to worship and study their sacred texts, but the Jews would get together in secret to pray/study, and if discovered, would pretend that they were just gambling and playing a gambling game.

So, there's a Cliff-Notes version of Hanukkah for your edification and enjoyment. Thanks to Mom and Dad for paying for 12 year of Jewish religious education. And thanks to Big Lots for a $2 VHS tape of "The Rugrats Hanukkah Special" which I've watched about a million times with DD in the past two years. Lol!
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Old 12-09-2008, 06:02 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, it has to be said that Jason is about a zillion times more even-keeled and socially generous than I am, so the thought never even occurred to him that their issue with the school (or religious beliefs in general) should have any influence on our relationship with them.
Joshua is much farther along the social evolution spectrum than I am as well. It's good perspective for me, even though it's still not really rubbed off!

And Woody, too, is so, so sensitive to sad, angry, dark, or scary moments in otherwise very low-key "kids'" shows! He especially knows scary music foretells scary things, and he'll kind of whimper and ask me to turn off the TV or fast-forward the DVD. The T.V. thing I'm still not sold on. It's a compromise between dh and I. But I'm not doing anything about the digital converter box out of principle, and I know HE won't do anything (out of habit!), so that might solve the philosophical disagreement right there!
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Old 12-09-2008, 11:29 PM
 
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spughy- i totally missed the part of your post where you said to invite the guy AND no other christians. I just read the part who to invite and who not to invite. sorry about my response to it.

uhm, so now i really want to have a solstice party or just be invited to one!!! my friend and i were talking about a way to make it happen today. she is buddhist and i really want to celebrate it with her and our friends here. any one actually having a party or have ideas for one to share?

kavita- thank you for sharing the awesome explanation for us. i find myself really wanting to celebrate Hanukkah stuff this year. the MW i work for is jewish so i have gotten to hear her process shabbat recently. and, then i saw this really neat looking menorah that was made from a tree branch (probably in martha stewart or something?) and the process of lighting candles on it just really spoke to me.

HT and Amy- add my DH to the list of guys who err on the side of awesomeness. he is soo friggin gracious to people that i find myself feeling like i must be so full of rage when i compare what my reactions are to what his are/would be. he grew up with some wacky religious stuff and says he is "in recovery" from it still.

one reason that i want to travel and live abroad is so that my kids actually see the world. i never left the USA until i was 18. and, so they know it's bigger than our city. so they see people doing things in all kinds of different ways as normal, including faith stuff. just like anything else that we do with our kids, i find that it helps me learn what i may have missed along the way or just get a fresh perspective.

helen- why are you feeling guilty that they are missing it? could you take them to something similar or are you really glad that you all can avoid it?

i have such mixed feelings about it all...amy, you are right about taking it too seriously. i tend to overanalyze things. like, i don't want a bunch of lights b/c of the energy use. but that makes me feel like a grinch. mel- maybe i am like you in getting confused...like what i am trying to do with it all anyway?

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:56 PM
 
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Gunter, our solstice party is going to be pretty low-key and drop-in, open-house style (because our place isn't big enough to handle everyone at once!) and I'm just making soup and little nibbles and mulled wine and cider and other nice *warm* things and we'll have the lights up and the tree and the woodstove going - just a celebration of warmth and food and company to welcome the return of the sun and to fortify us against the coldest part of the winter to come.

And today I think I need additional fortification ... Rowan was just SO cranky this morning. She slept poorly last night, waking a couple of times to scold DH for either pulling the covers off her or putting the covers on her. Then when she woke up she wanted to get out of bed (for some reason this requires parental involvement) and so DH got up to put on some socks and Rowan started whacking him and saying "Daddy! You're taking too long!" and DH, naturally, said he didn't really appreciate that sort of thing, and thus Rowan started the day crying. And it just sort of went from there, and ended with cod liver oil on a chair (washable, fortunately) and me hollering. And then apologizing, because the hollering wasn't really necessary. But OMG. I have never been so glad - and I feel awful saying this - to drop her off at grandma's house. Amy, I totally know what you mean by a "rationality-free zone" (and I'm not even pregnant, or PMS-y or anything.)

Postpartum doula & certified breastfeeding educator, mama to an amazing girl (11/05) and a wee little boy (3/13).

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Old 12-10-2008, 07:28 AM
 
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Gunter, it's partly tied up with my homesickness. Durham Cathedral is, well; old and big and traditional and just awe-inspiring. (Jen, Mary, take a look, please. I'd love to take you there some time.) And I can't find any pictures of the crib, and I really want to show you all- photography inside the cathedral is restricted. I grew up going to the tiny little chapel in our village, with the pulpit in the middle of the room, but I sang in the cathedral several times a year, had school and Guide carol services there, went to the Christmas services there and it was a huge part of my life. There isn't a physical presence like that around here, because Swindon is all new and modern and yucky, but there isn't a spiritual heart to the community like that as well. So yeah, it's both.

My daughter likes scary and inappropriate TV. Especially Doctor Who

ETA: spughy.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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Old 12-10-2008, 02:19 PM
 
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My daughter likes scary and inappropriate TV. Especially Doctor Who
Ella's favorite show right now is "Dirty House", ie, the American version of "How Clean is Your House?" I've been getting DVDs of it on Netflix and watching it, and she likes to watch it with me. Of course, the irony is that as we've been spending more time watching DVDs our own house is getting dirtier!! My house is pretty bad right now (well by my standards of neatness and cleanliness anyway, which most think are excessive with a preschool aged child) but I'm going to get back on top of it. Part of the problem is that I didn't clean too much before Thanksgiving because of my foot and I figured that the kids would mess it up anyway, and then we had that long day of driving helping my sister get back home, and then we were sick. We've only had six days of relative health and calmness following many weeks of craziness! Sigh. Must.mop.floors. As soon as I go to the bank, the library, Target and TJ Maxx to return things, pick up Ella from preschool, find cake flour and dutch processed cocoa powder for birthday torte ingredients for DH, feed Ella lunch, start dinner . . . .
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Old 12-10-2008, 06:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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one reason that i want to travel and live abroad is so that my kids actually see the world. i never left the USA until i was 18. and, so they know it's bigger than our city. so they see people doing things in all kinds of different ways as normal, including faith stuff. just like anything else that we do with our kids, i find that it helps me learn what i may have missed along the way or just get a fresh perspective.
This is so true. On the one hand, I can totally, totally see selling everything and moving into an RV, traveling around the US for months at a time, parking it at my mom's when it's time to go abroad, living off of some small income from writing or doing odd jobs or whatever. On the other hand, I love having a garden, getting used to the quirks of the oven in my house, having somewhere safe for the dogs to run around and be silly, sleeping in a comfy bed and being able to wash my things whenever I want...It's my constant Sagittarius/Capricorn cusp struggle! But the broadening the horizons part, and the non-attachment to things but rather the pursuit of experiences and relationships--that part has a strong draw for me, too.
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:05 PM
 
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I don't think I could ever not have a home-base, but I do love the idea of majorly down-sizing to a small house that we could pay off in 5 years or so. We've been talking a lot about it during the past couple of years (and buying this house *definitely* makes us wish we had waited to build something smaller ourselves!) and hope that our next house will be more of the tiny-house variety.

We've gotten a few books about cabins and little houses and I totally daydream about living on one like this (it's about 960 square feet) someday. Ahhhhh.

Can I just add, this computer that we're borrowing is sucha piece of crap!!! It crashes constantly, and it rarely loads any graphics or photos, especially if I'm on MDC (I can never see any of the editing buttons or smilies). Waaah! I want a new computer!!!!

Ever-evolving mama to my beautiful Brynn, and my little dimple-face Noah .
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Old 12-10-2008, 08:12 PM
 
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My daughter likes scary and inappropriate TV. Especially Doctor Who
I love watching Dr. Who, but I agree it's not exactly child friendly. Since we have cable after moving in with my friend I don't know when it's on or if it's on basic cable that she has.

We are having a Yule celebration on the 21st at our UU church and everyone we would invite to a Yule party will be there then. After that we will be spending 2 Sundays learning about what the Koran really says. That's a topic I know a good deal about already, but I love some of the topics we cover in our UU church :

Kristina mom to A 1/12 J 11/05 D 4/08 and tiny dude in late April 2010
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Old 12-10-2008, 08:29 PM
 
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OMG, last night I made Egg Nog Pie (ya'll would be disgusted by the recipe, though - it used pudding mix! but it was sooo yummy) and then for a potluck at church tonight I got the brilliant idea to try Eggnog Bread Pudding. I hope it turns out good - but the bread I used is high-fiber whole wheat, so I don't know if anyone there will like it. I think I will, though! I'm just loving holiday cooking and I've had such a craving for egg nog this year!

Ellie is going through a big sticking-her-tongue-out-phase. Apparently, the other kids in her class finally just flat out called her on it and told her that it hurt their feelings - so maybe that will have more of an effect than I and her teacher asking her to stop. Here's hoping! We're also having the experience of Ellie trying out dirty words. Luckily the two "bad words" she knows are stupid and idiot. I'm trying not to react too much and encourage it as an attention-getting device, but it sure is annoying.

Mama to DS (05/04) and DD (11/05), married to a wonderful DH.
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Old 12-10-2008, 09:14 PM
 
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those little houses are great. i like the ideas they promote, for sure. i would get so cramped with 2 kids and a dog and DH in such a small space, though. it would help us be outside more and more! we're talking about dividing our time up between here and living abroad doing volunteer or service work. after buying a solar house on almost an acre in a great location, it's hard to think about trading that in for anything else. i like our garden, too, HT and space for sherpa to bounce around.

but i tend to get antsy after a while of my american life. i don't know how to fully explain it. for example, i was at the craft store buying something for gifts i am making. i am framing some neat prints as a gift...do you know they cost anywhere from $10-$100? for a simple picture frame. i just about sat on the floor and started to sob. i had to work to stay composed after circling the frame aisles. if i were to spend $25 on a picture frame, i would have a hard time sleeping. it's just glass and wood, for heaven's sake. i came home and told DH that i was scared about stuff like that. but, i like to give gifts to people and want to be generous with my resources and this was to frame prints for a friend. i think i am just outraged that the store can expect people to pay that amount, you know?

jen- egg nog pie sounds awesome to me and i bet i could make up a vegan version although it may not have the same consistency. we do the soy egg nog around here; it's a mainstay in my fridge right now. ez has said stupid or bad to us a few times and i struggle to know how to respond.

RE:TV shows...even though we don't have a TV, we have watched some shows on the laptop. one is gray's anatomy and she calls it "the doctor movie". we usually watch it at night after she's asleep but if she's awake, we say "cover your eyes" when there is blood and guts everywhere. one more area where i struggle to do what i know is best!

doula mama to my nov 05 and my feb 08 babes who wrap me in love.
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Old 12-10-2008, 09:49 PM
 
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Whew- so much to respond to! It's taken me an hour to get through this thread!

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Let's send out to the universe that there is a lovely group of women here that would like to see some new contraceptive methods...
:
Mel, your holiday book/print is so amazing. I can't even imagine how one would begin to create something like that!

Susannah- when did you become a mod?

Hillary, Gunter, and QoC- I loved the pictures! I'm so happy your meeting was good and you all got to hang out in person! The play sound amazing- I hope you come to the DC area sometime!!

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2. I am voting for the BIG V for our DH's. I feel like I have given my body enough for our fertility, birth control, pregnancy, labor, nursing, all of that....and I am tired of it being MY responsibility to keep us not pregnant. (and usually only having choices that have health risks, even if they are small, along with them). is it just me that finds it fishy that, other than a vasectomy or condom, almost all other forms of birth control fall on women!!?
ITA!

Spughy- I'm glad your mom's out of the hospital! Hope she continues to do well.

Kavita- same for your dad! All the best to him.

Kristina- hooray on the upcoming work! I'm happy for you.

Wow- quite a Christmas/holiday discussion! Thanks for provoking so many interesting thoughts.

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amy- so sorry that you are running into that. it's an unrealistic expectation for the family to seek faith stuff in the montessori school. i am always surprised when people sign up for something that has little to do with their faith and then look for it to meet their faith needs.
i cherish my faith as such a tender thing...when people who claim the same faith are harsh, it's hard to reconcile that we even share the same faith!
I really agree with what you said here. Couldn't say it any better myself so I'll just say : I can't see how someone would think a secular place like a mont. school should be expected to adhere to just their personal beliefs at the expense of the majority of those attending!

We are sort of in the opposite situation here. There are very, very few Christians, pretty much NO evangelical or fundamentalist. There are very few people who are even open to the idea or mention of anything to do with Christianity whatsoever. It is pretty much a dirty word here. Nice environment for me as a Christian to be in Although we don't share common faiths, I do have so many wonderful friends and an awesome parenting community. However, the situation with my friends is that they are incredibly incensed, offended, and angered (similar to the guy Amy is describing) that ANY mention of Christmas or Jesus be allowed in the schools. They consider it "indoctrination" if a nativity is visible, Christmas carols are sung, or there is any mention that Christmas has anything at all to do with Jesus.

SO- it just seems inconsistent to me- we teach our kids and freely discuss other religious traditions, holidays, visit other types of churches if my kids express interest. Yet people of other faiths- among my friends are Buddhists, humanists, Catholic/Jewish mixes- there can be NO mention of Christianity. Now if I did that in regard to another faith, I would be considered totally intolerant and narrow minded. : It just doesn't make sense to me.

I guess what I'm trying to say is, I strive to be respectful of others' traditions, open minded and inquisitive about their beliefs, and teach my kids the same, but it's not too often I see it happen in reverse. And I'm talking about IRL, not with you ladies here of course! But I know I'm living in a bubble here and most of the country doesn't have the type of demographics that we have here!

Oh- and Kavita- ITA with you as far as asking about Santa, etc- I would never assume someone celebrated Christmas and start asking kids about it- people are always asking my kids about Santa and they are totally clueless- not that we're anti-santa but it's just not a part of how we celebrate. Even among people who do celebrate there is such a wide variety- I can't imagine saying anything other than "happy holidays" unless I knew for sure!

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kavita- i agree with you about how the birth of jesus is way intriguing now that i am a mama and a doula! i find myself seeking more of the actual details about how the birth went down. glad to know i am not the only one out here who wonders how long mary was in active labor.
I know! I love thinking about this! Esp. now as a mother, having had a baby I always wonder what it was like for Mary. Who did she have around her? What was the birth really like? Did she like having shepherds come visit her postpartum or was she wishing they'd just leave and let her rest? Did they eventually give them a room at the inn once they saw she had the baby?

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Because they have SNOW BALLS. ::

Sorry, I just couldn't help myself! Last year the one good snow we had wasn't enough for a decent snow human of any sort, so we ended up with a very small snow dog. It was almost like a snow Yorkie, disintegrating into a chihuahua! LOL!
Too funny!

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Gunter, it's partly tied up with my homesickness. Durham Cathedral is, well; old and big and traditional and just awe-inspiring. (Jen, Mary, take a look, please. I'd love to take you there some time.)
Helen- that is gorgeous!!
Also- hope your bc / fertility issues sort themselves out before too long and you find a solution
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Old 12-10-2008, 11:01 PM
 
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A great quote by Ellie tonight as she sat on the potty: "Poo-poo is NOT my favorite color!"

Mama to DS (05/04) and DD (11/05), married to a wonderful DH.
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