POSTS WITH TAG: independence

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    When I signed my family up for Screen-Free Week, I knew there would be friction. I'm raising a kid in a time when 8 to 18-year-olds spend an estimated 75 percent of their time connected to some sort of gadget. Telling my 8-year-old she couldn't watch TV, play on her laptop, or touch her Kindle for an entire week was going to be a hard sell.

    But I'd be lying if I didn't admit I was caught up in the mystical promise that forcing my family to "unplug" would bring us all together and make us closer. After all, that's what the folks behind Screen-Free Week promise ... that by getting rid of gadgets for seven days, our kids will be "turning OFF digital entertainment and turning ON life."

    So, did it happen?

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    Being a parent is a really tough job. Many argue that it is the toughest job. Yet, speaking only for myself, I made parenthood far harder than it needed to be by taking on jobs that were not mine. My job is to love and care for my kids, to make them feel safe and teach them to navigate the world into which they will venture. My job is to teach my sons the set of values, rightly or wrongly, that their father and I hold dear. My job is to launch educated, good, responsible men.

    That is a tall order without adding a whole list of other parenting challenges that frankly I am not certain can be achieved.

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  • LOL

    7 Secrets Moms Never Share

    posted by Jenny Isenman April 18 at 10:42 AM in Big Kid
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    There are certain secrets we moms keep to ensure the survival of our species. It’s not like we took an oath to keep them, it’s more of an unconscious phenomenon — like we’re programmed to omit certain details about parenting life from conversations on an evolutionary level.

    I kinda wish I’d been privy to this classified information beforehand, not that I could’ve prepared, but, like, full disclosure people! So I will go against my internal programming and divulge some things parents let you find out for yourselves.

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  • LOL

    25 Simple Ways to Annoy Your Tween

    posted by Jenny Isenman February 21 at 3:49 PM in Big Kid
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    When your child hits tweenhood, everything becomes bothersome, especially you. All the injustices of the world are highlighted with eye-rolls, grunts, and blank stares. 

    I'm taking advantage of this time by being extra annoying. For instance, when I'm sitting in the garage waiting for J, my 12-year-old son, to exit the house, I watch the door intently. As soon as he cracks it open, I beep. J startles, without fail, and glares at me as if I've done something unforgivable, like smashed his Beats or released all the remaining Axe body spray from the can.

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    Euthanasia is a hotly contested topic, as it should be. The decision to assist a person in dying because he or she is suffering greatly from an illness is not a matter that should be taken lightly. But now we've thrown an additional question into the mix: should seriously ill children be allowed to have a say in whether they live or die? There's no way, as a parent, you won't feel something just thinking about that possibility.

    This week, Belgium became the first country to remove age restrictions on euthanasia, which has caused folks from both sides of the debate to come out and speak their minds. Those in favor of it argue that children who experience incomprehensible pain deserve the same respect adults receive to choose whether they want to put an end to their suffering. But plenty of people oppose the practice and feel it's immoral or inhumane to help a child end his life.

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    I love Christmas and all the Christmas traditions — I love practically everything about the season — except for one itsy-bitsy complication: I’m Jewish. As much fun as dreidels and a well-lit menorah may be, they just can’t compete with an entire culture that goes Christmas-crazy every year.

    But there’s one big Christmas tradition that always makes me glad I’m Jewish: I don’t have to do the Santa thing. Here’s why I’m glad for that ...

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    Why is it that kids are always so much more respectful to people other than their parents? Those people aren’t the ones with the power to send them to their rooms, make them eat broccoli, or decide if they get to go to that birthday party this weekend.

    I'm going to say it's a sign of the trust they have in my unconditional love that they can tell me flat to my face that I'm wrong about something, or their way is the best way, or so-and-so said X, Y, Z, so it must be true even if Mommy says it's not.

    Some days I do a total facepalm when my kids choose to disregard what I say in favor of others. Seriously, kiddos, Mommy just might have a bit more wisdom than the My Little Ponies.

    Here are five people that my kids respect more than me.

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  • Hot List

    10 Best Mom-Approved Sites for Kids

    posted by Jeanne Sager November 18, 2013 at 11:40 AM in Big Kid
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    Get your kid a tablet, they say. The kids will love it, they say. No really, that's what all the retailers are saying this year, and the consumer experts too. This is the holiday season of the kids' tablet. The children want 'em, and the parents are expected to buy them in record numbers.

    This may solve the problem of what the big gift for Christmas will be, but it only creates another one for parents: if you're giving a kid a tablet with Internet access, how do you keep your child safe online?

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    There's no way this helicopter parenting trend can last. As the mom of a toddler with another on the way, it's been only two years and I'm already exhausted trying to plan my child's daily social and academic activities while also working and, you know, attempting to lead my own life once in a while, too. 

    So I propose we all just give up. No, I'm not suggesting we abandon our kids and hop a plane to the Caribbean, though that would be nice. I'm inviting you to join me on a little trek back to the 1970s when parenting was, comparatively, a piece of cake and -- though I have no scientific proof to back this up and just memories of my own mom -- I am pretty sure women were a lot less stressed out. Here are 10 reasons why the emergence of a 1970s parenting trend would be so very refreshing. 

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    You know how older folks -- like your parents, maybe -- sometimes have this obnoxious know-it-all attitude about parenting that's combined with a steadfast belief that everything related to raising kids was better back in their day? Well, I'm not proud to admit it, but in the last couple years, I feel like I've become more and more curmudgeonly about parenting trends, to the point where I'm certain it's only a matter of time until I too am like the cranks shouting about how child-rearing should be done uphill, in the snow. BOTH WAYS.

    In fact, I'm going to go ahead and indulge my inner critic with this list of semi-recent parenting tactics I vigorously disapprove of.

    (Do you agree with any of these? Or am I just becoming the crazy old lady shouting at kids to get off her damn lawn?)

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