How to Protect Your Empathetic Kid From All the Feels

Everybody touts the benefits of mastering the art of empathy. Feel your feels! It’s true, this is crucial. Empathy creates compassion, which fuels activism. It creates a fighter for the bullied, the oppressed, and the underrepresented. It builds a barrier against callousness. It’s the perfect vaccine against jadedness and cynicism. Hence, every parent wants to be an Atticus educating a Scout. We want them to walk in another person’s shoes for a little bit to gain

I Don’t Want to Be the Mom That Looks Like She’s Got Somewhere Else to Be

I saw a man in a dress and a wig walking a dog around the park not too long ago. It was a flowery dress, one with hibiscus and palm leaves trailing down the front. The wig was red, a knock-off Lucille Ball, but it worked. The dog was little and crazy-happy to be walking out in the sunshine on this Saturday afternoon in August. The man was talking to himself, somewhat angrily, and his

Why We Lose Our Yuck Face (Scientifically Speaking)

My son gently placed a booger in my hand at the zoo the other day, and I thanked him. On the way to the trash can, he analyzed the size, shape, and viscosity. I nodded in agreement. We were examining his ecosystem. When did this happen? When did I cross over to the other side of gross? How did I lose the “ick” factor? I’ve never been squeamish. Cuts don’t bother me. I’ve never fainted

The Lift That Keeps on Giving

“Your love keeps lifting me higher than I’ve ever been lifted before (keep on, keep on lifting me…higher and higher)” I did. I sang a little Jackie Wilson to Charlie this last week and danced a very gentle jig as we rode up and down and up and down on his new wheelchair lift. This was a big thing coming for us. Months and months of working with a special needs contracting company and volunteer

On Aging. (Sunday Thoughts Link Up #35)

ISAIAH 46:4 3 “Listen to me, you descendants of Jacob, all the remnant of the people of Israel, you whom I have upheld since your birth, and have carried since you were born. 4 Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.  GENESIS 25:8 7 Abraham lived a hundred and seventy-five years. 8 Then Abraham breathed his

The Right Way to Apologize to Your Kids

“Get off the kitchen counter.” In and of itself that doesn’t seem like such a bad statement when your twin toddlers are standing on the granite countertop lobbing crayons into your newly-filled coffee cup. I left out all the choice adjectives between “the” and “kitchen.” But I yelled it – yelled it eight decibels too loud for a rational person. Animals around the world froze to listen. We’ve all done or said something that merits

What Keeps Me Young

“Ma’am, can I help you with that?” I nod and unkink my back while the boy collecting carts in the parking lot at the grocery store bends down and scoops up my fallen sunglasses. He does it in one fluid motion that reminds me of a surfer riding out a wave. No biggie, man. It is a biggie to me as I try to stand with the dignity of a young-ish woman. I give up

5 Non-Creepy, Non-Biting Summer Bugs to Love

Neither rain nor drought, neither pool nor park crowds, neither pollen nor pollution will keep me inside this summer. These are vows I have taken and will abide by for the remainder of the season. You can add bugs to this list, too – for better or worse. After last summer, we know the risks of Zika and how to stay prepared. We know that fire ants are nicknamed “red devils” for good reason, and

Science Says Toddlers Are Smarter Than Apes, Barely

Having two children pulled out of my uterus seemed barbaric, but I kissed their goopy heads all the same. Once they were clean, sleeping, and smelling of milk and the doctors had put me back together again, I thought the barbarity was over and that we were on our way to becoming civilized. Silly me. I’ve just spent the last three years trying to make something human out of these two. As twins go, they could

Village to Village (Sunday Thoughts Link Up #34)

RUTH 1:19-21 19 So the two women went on until they came to Bethlehem. When they arrived in Bethlehem, the whole town was stirred because of them, and the women exclaimed, “Can this be Naomi?” 20 “Don’t call me Naomi,” she told them. “Call me Mara, because the Almighty has made my life very bitter. 21 I went away full, but the Lord has brought me back empty. Why call me Naomi? The Lord has afflicted me; the Almighty has brought misfortune upon me.” RUTH 4:14-17 14 The women said to Naomi: