just remember, it’s a real person in there

Certain things in life carry long term consequences.  Defrauding the government.  Murdering your ex-wife.  Maxing out then defaulting on six credit cards.

When it comes to kids, though, they’d argue that the name you hang around their neck affects them for life.  No pressure but, you know…tread gently.

“So without further a-doo-doo, here are a few baby names that maybe you shouldn’t name your newborn:

NEVAEH

When your baby won’t sleep more than 16 minutes straight and she’s sinking her piranha jaws into your calloused nips and you feel like you’ve entered a hell you never knew existed, suddenly it might dawn on you that naming your newborn “heaven” spelled backward was the opposite of brilliant.  Here’s an idea, maybe you should have named her lleh.”

A few baby names you probably shouldn’t choose, just sayin’ : Baby Sideburns

Forever Family: odds and ends #4

 

One of the parts of parenting I struggle with is the spectator aspect.  There’s lots of hands on activity to be sure, but we seem to be in a season of watching our young-ish ones test their wings (aka waiting to see if they crash and burn).  Watching and waiting is hard.  And watching when you know the crash and burn is inevitable?  Hell, that’s the hardest part of all.

And self esteem…oh my lawd, the self esteem.  How is it I know to the depths of my soul the innate worth of these children, but they just don’t seem to get it?  One of mine will go back to kids who are disrespectful and outright cruel over and over, calling them “friends” until they act like turds again.  You deserve better.  You deserve better.

This week brought the delightful moment when I found myself explaining to one of my children why we never, ever, ever joke about how much the other kid cost.  A) We don’t buy and sell people because that is i-l-l-e-g-a-l.  B) We should strive to be our best selves, and that comment is nowhere close.  C) Sadly, it cuts a little close to the bone.

It took about a month but I finally told T-man why I stopped responding to a certain parent’s texts.  I thought I was protecting him, but he’s thirteen and deserves to have all the information when choosing whether to go to someone else’s house.  Be friends, don’t be friends, whatever…but you should know his dad made a comment about shielding his daughter from ebonics, so I’m not feeling real cool about the parental aspect over there.

We shared some John Oliver episodes with the kids this week.  Sure, some of you might be thinking we’re nuts watching a late night comedian who drops the F bomb, but things get pretty real around here.  And it’s been good for them to see an adult stand up on national television and call out what passes for bullshit in this country right now.  The episode Oliver did on the Confederate flag was particularly timely.

On a side note, this isn’t adoption related, but the kids’ commentary on cheerleaders at Wednesday’s pep rally was downright hysterical.  Boobs, a twerking motion, and those ridiculous skirts all came up.  (BrightSide dryly noted that cheerleaders enjoy a rather lax dress code exemption.)

And those are the odds and ends for this week.

when you set a goal and God throws down

“When it comes to technology and the kids nothing promised is permanent, nothing is etched in stone.  We try something and if it works, great.  If not?  Well, we try something else…

Which brings us to our latest shift.  It seems even our best efforts can’t get the kids enough non-screen time altogether, so BrightSide came up with the radical idea of no screens on Sundays.  I’ll repeat that.  An entire day without technology.  None.  At all.  Every single week.”

The goal of Friday’s post, basically, was the hope that sending good thoughts out into the universe might bless us with a semi-peaceful attempt at living tech-free for a day.  I wasn’t looking for Ghandi-like enlightenment, just sixteen or so hours with limited squabbling.

Here’s how it went.

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gunfight at the O.K. Corral (aka mamas, sons, and the battle cry)

Last week I took Bear to get her hair trimmed.  I’m not winning any awards in this area – I’ve been known to go an entire year before remembering Bear needs a haircut, and since she isn’t really styling it I just take her to my own hairdresser.  Now, Penny is awesome and does a good cut, but she’s a white gal from Boston who mostly works with senior citizens.  Not exactly a cultural experience for Bear.  Then again, Penny’s scrupulous about getting the haircut right so I guess I could be doing worse.

But I digress.

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technology trial and error

Life around here is one long experiment.  When it comes to technology and the kids nothing promised is permanent, nothing is etched in stone.  We try something and if it works, great.  If not?  Well, we try something else.

I’m sure the shifting ground rules irritate T-man and Bear, but it’s the best we can do.  And isn’t that the truth for parents everywhere?

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real world: Bear bangs into big city life

My kids lead a sheltered life.  Shoot, who am I kidding – I’ve led a sheltered life.  There are hardships and then there are hardships, and I’ve got a good handle on where I fall on the spectrum.  BrightSide and I don’t want to raise precious snowflakes.  We want to expose our kids to the world and keep them grounded, but I don’t quite think it’s gone according to plan. 

BrightSide’s company provides incredible travel opportunities.  We’re blessed to go across the country or around the globe, to experience different cultures, to sample new cuisine, and to explore a planet where there are a thousand ways to live a beautiful life.  I’d never give it up, but we know this travel doesn’t immerse T-man and Bear in a daily reality for these cultures.

 

Which is what made San Francisco so bracing for Bear.

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what we need vs. what we’re expected to settle for

Painful, poignent, and a brutal truth.  Please read this story today and think…what would I do if this were my child? 

“My son was berated as an “N-word” at camp this week.  Some of the kids have been asking him if he is Mexican and if he is here “legally.”  Carl is much darker than I am so sometimes kids ask “how he came out like that.”  This kind of ignorance permeates our society today.  I have no problem gently educating people that our nation is made up of all kind of different people.  Some children are born into families and some are adopted.  Not all Mexicans are “illegals” and not all Hispanics are Mexican.  Yada yada yada.  At this point I realize my lip service is doing nothing whatsoever.”

Ice Cream and The N Word | Herding Chickens and Other Adventures in Foster and Adoptive Care

50 shades of awkward

It was movie night at the house and we were introducing T-man to Hitch, one of my favorite rom-coms ever.  Will Smith is da bomb, y’all.  Just sayin’. 

So we came to a kissing scene and I could actually see T-man shrinking into his chair.  Through sheer force of will he managed to decrease his body mass by .8% and would have, were it possible, sunk straight through the floor.

I shouldn’t find this funny, right?

 

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