Image Map

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Santa Brings Joy and Cheer, Not iPads

The holidays are officially upon us. A time of joyful anticipation for children and ridiculous amounts of work-and wine-for adults. I thought I would take this time to share with you the way our family celebrates Christmas.

I treat the holidays as a time to gather with friends and family over copious amounts of food, laughter and usually booze. For me, Christmas is a time to be together. To ice cookies and listen to rat pack Christmas albums.

I don’t do elf on the shelf because I don’t need Santa's little helper narc sneaking around my house in the middle of the night to teach my children how to act. I do that. And because I sure as shit don’t have time to remember to move that motherfucker errry. damn. day.

I also don’t buy my children extravagant gifts under the guise of them being from Santa. Santa only fills stockings at our house and he doesn’t fill them with iPads. He fills them with little toys and trinkets that the kids love--like Rubik's cubes and candy and nail polish. The Hatchimal that I had to go to three damn Targets to secure came from mommy and daddy. Because Santa's jolly ass fo sho isn't getting credit for that shit.

But more than just not wanting to give a mythical figure credit for my hard earned money and time, I am thinking of other families when I limit what Santa gives my kids. My kids go to a school where there is an incredible range of household incomes. Some children at their school may be lucky to get a few trinkets from the dollar store from Santa, while others get an Xbox and a literal pony. How do you explain to a child in need that Santa provided a family that already had so much with even more and that he provided them with so little? I have no problem with you providing your child with a Clydesdale for Christmas, but don't do it in the name of Santa. On second thought, if you have Clydesdale money, please just promise me that you will make a gift to charity that equals the amount you pay for the horse. Also, can I pet it? And maybe name it Sparky? And possibly have it pull me around in a cart shaped like a smaller horse?

Anyway. So on Christmas, we give our children very little from "Santa". And to be honest, not much more from us. My kids each get three gifts. All totaling less than $100 per child. Because my kids don't need more "stuff". They need love and support and kindness-all of which come for free.

So how do our kids feel about this? Happy. And grateful. I told them that I asked Santa to only fill our stockings even when he gives others gifts because we are so lucky with all of the love that we have in our lives. And they get it. And they spread that love and spirit of it's-better-to-give-than-to-receive to others.

I will step off my Santa soapbox. But I hope that some of you will join me in pulling back on Santa's reins this year. In the name of raising grateful kids, supporting kids in need and getting ALL the damn credit for that damn Hatchimal.

If you share this post, I will buy you a pony. I suck at Twitter. I am OK at Facebook. Pinterest is my bitch. I am also on Bloglovin' and Instagram.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Parenting isn't hard.

Parenting isn't hard. Now before you gather your mom friends and head toward my house bearing flaming torches...

Parenting isn't hard. Life is. Parenting should be a joy. But often that joy is suffocated by real life. Bills, taxes, marital problems, etc. Dropping our kids off at soccer practice isn't hard. The problem is that during that drive instead of enjoying our kids we are thinking about laundry and cooking dinner and... We can't focus on singing crappy '90s rap songs with our kids on the way because we are too busy worrying about the myriad other things we need to be doing in order to keep the wheels on the bus from falling off and our lives driving into a fiery pit of chaos.

And crying over spilled milk isn't a joke--it's an epidemic. Just ask any mom who spilled 8 oz of freshly pumped liquid boob gold. Or a mom that just picked her kid's sippy cup off the ground for the 14 millionth time today. In the long run, we aren't mad about the spilled milk. We're mad because we made another mistake because we weren't paying attention. Or because we yelled at our kid for an accident--or a pattern they have developed trying to get our attention. I've lost count of the times that I have completely lost my shit over something small. All because I am absolutely overwhelmed by all of the people/pets/things that I am responsible for in life.

What's my point? God only knows. I am generally so distracted by everything in life that I lose track of what I was saying/doing three seconds in. But sometimes I'm not. For a split second every once in a while life stops me in my tracks with something beautiful. My children playing together without guidance or fighting, a butterfly fluttering by, a check I didn't know was coming in the mail just when I needed it.

So what's my solution? I don't have one. Just a bit of perspective to stop and smell the sweaty soccer cleats every once in a while. Take a minute to laugh at being spit up on right before you have to head to an important meeting. Take five minutes out of each day to stop thinking about all of the flaming piles of poo that life is currently throwing at you and enjoy watching your kids throw all of the laundry you just folded into a pile that they can jump in. Hell, jump in with them. You are going to have to refold it one way or another so you might as well get some joy out of it.
If you share this post, I will buy you a pony. I suck at Twitter. I am OK at Facebook. Pinterest is my bitch. I am also on Bloglovin' and Instagram.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

You boys like Mexico?

So we booked a trip to take the kids to Mexico for spring break. One of those all you can eat and drink and sunburn deals that has a kids club. I am equal parts excited and terrified.

As we prepare to embark on a vacation that is complete luxury and no necessity, I am reminded of all of the families that are fighting so hard to stay in this country so they can better the lives of their children. There is no difference between those families and mine.

Though my children reap the benefits every day of the latitude and longitude of their birth location and color of their skin, two things that mean nothing in reality but everything in the mixed up world that they are living in, I work to teach them to fight for others. Speak up for those whose voices can't be heard. Recognize their privilege and use it to change the world for the better.

If ever I thought raising an infant was hard, raising children in a time where I have to explain the terrible actions of a rich, white male with no empathy for those who are different than himself is so much harder. But I will continue to mold two people who will be selfless, advocates for others.

Please join me in raising a generation of amazing men and women who will make this world better with every action.

If you share this post, I will buy you a pony. I suck at Twitter. I am OK at Facebook. Pinterest is my bitch. I am also on Bloglovin' and Instagram.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...