benefits of bailing

mar 2016 ohbabeKia Ora geeks!  Here is the latest issue from our friends at OHbaby!  I am proud of the piece I wrote in there, about quitting, and I enjoyed many other gems, tooski.

Speaking of OHbaby!, I wrote an article for the Winter 2014 issue, about maternal anger.  Just last week, one of the mamas I interviewed at the time sent me this article from the Guardian, about expressing emotions around children.  She reckons we were ahead of the curve.  How exciting, for a reclusive hermit anti-fashionista!

Now let me share these great many links with y’all.  From the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, this is a fab resource promising real-life strategies for reducing screen time.  Next, because who doesn’t love a good infographic, this is a resource from Zero to Three summarising the impact of poverty on early child development.

And from the Child Trauma Academy (I promise not to use the word ‘resource’ again …) is this excellent slide series/video about … well, child trauma.   Similarly awesome is this report from the Berry Street whānau in Australia.  They do amazing work for children and families and they call on the CTA wisdom to do so.

Also from Australia: this news report about a Mother’s milk bank, and this from Scientific American will tell you what wee babies can see that we no longer can.  Also from Scientific American: this article describes how the wiring of your brain reveals the real you.

Some research and a grunty report now … Here is some open access research about how Mindful Parenting lowers stress in children (frankly I should flippin well hope so!!), while this research identifies types of humour exhibited by children, and links them to resilience.   This report from the USA examines what investments are needed to get kids ready for school.

Finally, this from the Independent newspaper tells us what parenting techniques have been used by parents of successful children (*would love to see a definition of what ‘successful’ means) and BOY OH BOY would I love to do some shopping at Kanikani Kids.  Tino ataahua enei!

quick hypocritical post

b reads little treasureswhaddup pre Christmas geeks.  Hope you’re not on a screen when your school holiday children are seeking your attention.  That’d be lame.  That’d be just what I’m doing right now … hypocrite.

So here’s Big Girl reading the latest issue of Little Treasures magazine, which has a wee piece written by this geek therein.

Some quick links I gotta share, then I’m going to do some drawing with Little Girl.  First, here is a write up about the latest inductees to the toy hall of fame.  Any guesses?  Now a link to some of the world’s coolest playgrounds (although I tend to rate the area under our macrocarpa trees as equally stunning).

Very nice (inspiring!) cartoons from a clever New Yorker are here, and it’s not too late to purchase a pair of chickens for Christmas.  Finally ….  this is the recipe to the world’s most awesome Christmas cake.  Made mine yesterday!  Thanks, Nigella!

joyful, jumbled times

oh baby school issueGeeks ahoy!  Here is a picture featuring the newest issue of OHbaby!.  In there is an article I wrote, remember?  ’Bout School Readiness?  I’m proud of it.

Also featured in the picture is my right foot.  Have we ever talked about nail polish strategies?  For me, a busy and overthink-y mind benefits greatly by being able to gaze down away from the troubles of injustice and inequality and the grief of our time, and just bask in one of the frivolous joys of our time.  Now and then, anyway.

Quick handful of quality links here, friends, then I’m off to organise dins for the whanau.

Here is a luscious and supremely simple summary of research from Scientific American, it’s called How to be a Better Parent.  Enjoy.

While you’re being a better parent, you could avoid buying web based toys for your kidlets.  Here is a piece from the Guardian to impress upon you why.  Another interesting take on kids and tech is to be found here, in this Opinion piece from the Washington Post, written by a teacher.  It’s called I gave my students iPads — then wished I could take them back

Just for fun, here’s a summary of brain development basics from the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, and I end with a link to a PodCast covering an uber important topic … how to communicate about early childhood development with folks who don’t share our backgrounds.  Here comes a gift from Liz’s Early Learning Spot.  Season’s Greetings!

Good evening geeks

I begin by sharing a useful link about car seat use in NZ … rules and such.  If you’re anything like me you’ll have a dither that lasts for MONTHS … should little girl still be in the five point harness or are we ready for a booster?  Dither!  MONTHS!  Thanks also to the gentleman from this site, who has alerted me to my vast number of broken links.  I blush.  And will remedy.  Some day.

Other things?  Here’s a cautionary tale from the Campaign for a Commercial Free Childhood, warning you about the horrors of Hello Barbie.  If the predatory nature of toy manufacturers makes you weep, you might enjoy this article about the science of crying.

Please enjoy this hilarious and poignant bit of writing by Kimberley Harrington “Is There a Parenting Expert on this Plane?”.  BRILLIANT.  I’m currently in LOVE with the website it came from, McSweeneys. And lastly, an article I wrote for OHbaby!, some time ago … it’s about the loveliness (sexiness!) of good dads.  Purr!

the confident mother

sherry bevan book wrinkly eyekia ora geeky friends.  Here I am hiding behind the new book The Confident Mother from Sherry Bevan in the UK.  There’s a chapter in there which was created after our interview together.  I’m awed by the vision and drive of this gal.

I’ve made fresh playdough in three colours today … do I get points for drive, tooski?

Quick flurry of links now, then I’ll continue with my list.  First day back to school for my big girl today, so little girl and I are kinda making the most, which does NOT include keeping my nose in a screen.  So swiftly now;

A piece from the New Zealand news about the “farming” nature of some child care centres.  And I don’t mean they visit farms.  I mean they are the farms.  This is a call from one mama blogger to abandon the whole ‘goody bag’ thing at kids’ parties.

I got two gems from Pop Sugar sent to me this week: this one is BEAUTIFUL pictures of REAL post partum mamas and babies and this is about the new Disney princess … the first Polynesian … hope she can give the other princesses a lesson in self reliance.

From Slate: a cool (albeit cynical) summary of conversations between parents and children, and finally, from the Huffington Post, a round up of sleep research as relates to children.  Night night.

 

in my letterbox today

Photo on 2015-09-11 at 14.15 #3hooray!  With thanks to the Dora DVD my daughter (boss?) is watching, I am not only able to post this, but I even got to read the latest issue of OHbaby! magazine.  I wrote a piece in there.  It’s about temperament and I hope you find it helpful.

First up today, friends, is a great link for motivating a bit of advocacy for children, here in NZ.  This is the website for Best Start, whose primary mission is about improving the quality of early childhood education.  Lord, we’ve been banging on about this for decades and we seem to be doing a backward slide … read this piece about the rise of corporate childcare and see if you agree that a ruckus needs to be raised.

Next, a couple of resources from Zero to Three, about school readiness.  First a blog post that will explain why a group whose concern is babies & toddlers should have such insights into what being ready for school really means, and this is a dandy summary of research.

Here is a little something from the Washington Post imploring us to allow more play for our kids (another thing we’ve been banging on about since forever) and just for a little light reading for the weekend,(and cos Dora’s about to sing the song that tells me the episode is over … they did it …) here is a report from Australia about the mental health of their children and adolescents.  Arohanui xxx

Imperfection. Everywhere.

Photo on 2015-08-18 at 17.28Yesterday I helped to welcome Mary Gordon to our fair city.  She was talking about her magnificent Roots of Empathy project, which we’d dearly love to see back in Christchurch (funders?  philanthropists?  Kei hea a koutou?)

Seems to me that the Roots of Empathy NZ tour is well timed: check out this news item from late last week.

There is a new newsletter (new news?) from the Brainwave Trust, featuring an article I wrote, called “Embracing Imperfection”.  You can read it here.

My pals at OhBaby shared this article with me, about surfing the tide of motherhood exhaustion (cos ya might as well embrace …), and I know it’s 5 years old now, but I still reckon Sally Peters’ report for the Ministry of Education is one of the best places to gather info about successful Transition to School.

That might have to do for now.  It’s dinner time. x

play. work. play. sleep. play. practice. play.

Photo on 2014-12-09 at 06.07Right ho.  So my newest thang is in this magazine with yet another astronomically lovely bub on the front.  I hope that if you read it you will like it.

Here is another link to an article about play – this is written with someone with WAY more gravitas than I.  This is fantastic.

With December slip-slidin’ away you might enjoy this list of non-toy gift ideas for children … and if you move fast you can still vote for worst toy of the year at CCFC’s annual TOADY awards.

Thursday I will teach a workshop for the first time since I was preggers with Little Girl.  At the Toddlerific conference near Christchurch.  Have planned a preso, but have not even thought through all the logistics inherent in driving vast distances, filling travel forms, sorting real life toddler’s needs ETC because today is my Big Girl’s birthday!  Eleven years I’ve been a mama.

One thing at a time for this geek.

constant role changes

smallest child is RIGHT into dramatic play just now.  We are assigned and reassigned roles all day long as she switches from one character to another, necessitating that we do also.

It leaves me mentally exhausted at day’s end.  As I am NOW.

I’ve got a deadline and a familiar mild creeping anxiety cos I have a writing deadline and no clue when I will knock it off.  It’s one of those topics that is so juicy and vital and I long to do it justice.  Yikes.

So some quick links before sleep …

Here’s a little something about babies and their dissociation … it can look like bubbas who are left to cry are settled but they AIN’T.  They’re just silently hurting.

The lovely Lammily doll is in production and my girls will be getting one for Christmas shshshshhhhhhhhh.

And listen … i am slowly reading this lifechanging book and I long to chat about it with other folks so someone else read it too, please … it just might change the way you think about humanity.  Not even joking.

 

big emotions

Photo on 2014-09-15 at 15.09Kia ora geeks.  Hope your week is going swimmingly.  Mine began with a new issue of OHbaby! magazine, featuring an article I contributed.  It’s called “weathering the storm”, and it’s about supporting children with their big emotions.  The issue also features an utterly beautiful baby on the cover.  LOOK!

Here are a random assortment of links for your surfing pleasure … This is from the good folk at the Center for the Developing Child at Harvard … it is about using science to inform child welfare policy.  Similarly, but differently, here’s a fact sheet about the negative impact of instability on our little children.  We are about to have an election in NZ and I wonder if our leaders have read this.  (have ya?  hmmmm?)

Here is a cool resource for teachers about “sowing the seeds of neuroscience“,  and this is a link to some research into the evidence base for early childhood education.  Of course. all that only works if we are talking about care of high quality.  And that is a whole separate conversation if we’re talking ’bout babies.

Actually, that last link comes from the excellent website of the For Our Babies campaign, which deserves your time.  I have just finished the book of the same name by Ron Lally and it is such an outstanding summary of the complex layers that have led us to today … I wholeheartedly recommend it.  The relevance oozes beyond the USA.

Now a feelgood link; a new find called Green Child magazine.  Recipes, ideas, inspiration.  Yum.

Finally, a couple more links encouraging you to slow down and create mental downtime.  Specifically, if you’ve got writing to do, head outside.