• Living with Children,  Parenting

    Does the Truth Really Hurt?

    Dear Children, Speak your truth. Say it boldly. Say it with your eyes, your demeanor, and your inside voice, if necessary, but say it. Do not shrink or dull yourself because someone else feels uncomfortable in your light. That is on them. Either they need to put on sunglasses or find another spot to inhabit. This world is full of half-truths and placating relationships, neither support the optimal development of those involved. While I encourage you to interact with others using your best judgment, which includes knowing when to talk and when to listen, when to step up and when to back down, whatever you choose, do so with your…

  • Babies,  Social Changes

    Promises

    Promises I hear it in the way you speak, the words you use, the tone you choose. The anger, disgust, contempt are like spikes in my soft skin. I have made you mad, again. It seems I am built defective, wired wrong a mixture of thoughts, ideas, opinions, and hopes misfiring daily. Then, you smile and my entire body lights up. There is a warmth that surrounds my heart cradled like my infant body once was when you were ecstatic to meet me. But it doesn’t last long. The more familiar feeling of being cold and alone replaces the warmth, like an ice bucket dumped on a struggling flame. It’s…

  • Living with Children,  Parenting,  Social Changes

    Society Will Change—One Peaceful Parent at A Time

    “What if war was not inevitable? What if tyranny, human rights abuses and ecological destruction were not inescapable? And what if the means to prevent them were in the hands of ordinary mums and dads, and all those involved in the care and education of children? Are these idealistic or Utopian flights of fancy? Not at all, if we consider some of the most valuable insights gained in recent years.” excerpt from Parenting for a Peaceful World by Robin Grille   When I was in high school the 10,000 Maniacs’ song “What’s the Matter Here?” came out. The lyrics were a chilling reminder of how many children suffer daily at…

  • Freedom,  Learning,  Self-Directed Learning,  Teens

    The Day My Teen Built His Own Computer

    If you’re not willing to learn, no one can help you. If you’re determined to learn, no one can stop you. -Unknown It happened. The Amazon cart filled with computer parts for well over a month was finally emptied. On his 15th birthday, the money he saved from summer jobs combined with monetary birthday gifts from family and friends was enough to fulfill the goal he set months ago. What? An actual, working computer? But how? These were absolutely my questions too. When he first started talking about the idea I remember thinking, “Yea. Ok.” Then I drifted off wondering many things…Am I going to need to hire someone? Am…

  • Living with Children,  Parenting,  Social Changes

    Is There A Kindness Deficit In Your Home?

    “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.”  –Nelson Mandela Kindness is something we all respond to. When we come into contact with kind people, our radar goes up, we take notice, and we are affected–positively. Biologically speaking, being the giver of a kind act creates a wave of the feel good hormone, oxytocin, and according to research (and my own personal experience) makes us repeat compassionate givers. In some recent studies I’ve conducted, we have found that when people perform behaviors associated with compassionate love—warm smiles, friendly hand gestures, affirmative forward leans—their bodies produce more oxytocin. This suggests…