Creating a Village One Meal at a Time

  In thinking about all the things I do in the service of “good parenting”, by which I mean creating the conditions conducive to my boys’ growth and maturation, there is one that is so simple, so indirect, as to almost slip right under the radar. And, yet, when I turn my attention to this…

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The Magic of “Once-Removed”

  Do you know about the magic of “once-removed”? Children need to feel their vulnerable feelings—sadness, loneliness, longing, loss—in order to mature. In fact, emotion is the engine of maturation. Children don’t get to choose which feelings they feel: either they feel them (all) or they don’t feel them (at all). The vulnerable ones are…

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Raising Future Adults in Tumultuous Times

Oh, these days. These enraging, difficult days where women are reminded how little (many of) those in power care about our humanity; where we are reminded that our bodies are so often seen as the playthings of men (“the laughter is indelible in the hippocampus”), and where the pain caused by being treated with such…

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Making Space for All of It

Sometimes when my teenager is feeling sad he wonders if it’s actually such a good thing to feel things so deeply. He muses to me that if he didn’t he wouldn’t have to feel sad. He has a good point; when our hearts are soft they feel a lot. But, in good time, I remind…

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Beyond ‘Baby Bonding’

When most of us hear the word “attachment”, especially if we live in progressive cities like Portland, it brings up images of attachment parenting groups, extended breastfeeding, co-sleeping and delayed or no vaccinations. This is the “attachment parenting” espoused by Dr. Sears and rigidly embraced by many parents looking for a lifeline when they find…

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