Letting the Princess into the Farm House

Note: This article originally appeared  on kveller.com. Kveller.com offers a Jewish twist on parenting, everything a Jewish family could need for raising Jewish children–including crafts, recipes, activities, Hebrew and Jewish names for babies…and advice from Mayim Bialik. It all started with the arrival of the Ariel bathing suit. I was whipping a cart through Target when my 2-year-old spotted the suit. “Oooh, so pretty,” she said. “And her hair is exactly the same color as mine.” My daughter has dark brown hair and Ariel’s hair is a shade of red you don’t actually find naturally. Something about her bubbly delight combined …

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Lessons from a Broken Candle

A few weeks ago, my two year old found this havdalah candle on the table and picked it up. She was probably twisting it around in her hands, maybe she wanted to see if she could unbraid it and before she knew it, the candle broke. Havdolah candles are lit for a ceremony marking the end of Shabbat (the sabbath). We don’t do it every week, so the candle was a bit of a novelty to have out. I came in the room and before thinking said, “oh, you broke it”.  I saw her whole body startle.  She looked at …

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Tractor Seat Slipcovers and Baby Carrots

Ready for some comic relief from real life today? Truth is really stranger (and funnier) than fiction. Sometimes I spend time reading sewing blogs and marveling at all the adorable projects some super mothers seem to effortlessly carry out while caring for many children, homeschooling, gardening and generally doing it all.  For me, sewing and parenting are not always as easy a match.  So with that in mind, I have to share what I just found in my sewing machine compartment.  Please note, last I saw this compartment had 4 bobbins ready to go and my new seam ripper (the …

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Natural Play on the Farm

I am not going to pretend that my children go outside to play every day.  There are plenty of days in Maryland that are too cold, or too hot, or too windy to play safely outside.  But today we took a little walk outside and it turned out to be so inspiring.  I love how creative children are with play especially when they are out in nature. A ladder set aside from a job becomes a natural obstacle course for learning balance. We do not have much in the way of an outdoor playground and it is at these moments when …

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My Appletunist

I have decided that my 18 month old is an apple-tunist. Apple was one of her earliest words and she loves to say it. Even though it has three sounds and seems a lot more complicated than “mama” it was a very early word for my son too, so maybe it is somewhat universal. She used to use the word to refer to all food, hunger and all things round like a ball. She would also say it just for fun while riding in the car. Now she has a lot of new words – almost a word a day. …

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Jewish Parenting Book Review and Giveaway

Rabbi Ilana Grinblat’s, “Blessings and Baby Steps: The Spiritual Path of Parenthood” recently published by Behrman House offers a refreshing account of one mother’s attempt to infuse Jewish values and education into her parenting. I can attest that her short chapters make reading the book possible — even when you are busy chasing your own small children. I read the book while my children were engaged in sand play — three minutes here, 15 minutes there. Also, the chapters are very topical, so readers will easily hop around to topics of interest. The collection of essays spans pregnancy through age …

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Big Shoes

My 16 month old girl loves shoes. She seems to love them indiscriminately – from giant mud caked farm boots, to rubber boots six sizes too big and her new butterfly sandals. She wants to wear them all. I think there is something universal about children wanting to try on all the shoes in the house and maybe that’s where expression that someone has some pretty big shoes to fill comes from. This morning, she brought me her little pink sneakers. I put them on and she was satisfied for about two seconds. Then she toddled off and brought back …

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