brown paper packages

she’s pouting, I’m not (and at the end I get on my soapbox)

Pout
I caught my little four-going on-fourteen year old pouting behind my bed today. If you could see the rest of her, there’d be tightly crossed arms and a deep scowl. This is her new thing lately, finding a place to go off in a huff of anger. I can’t even remember what this was about this morning. Probably that I wouldn’t give her a second piece of toast with nutella on it or something….But anyway she pulled out of her slump and we’re all feeling much better now…
I, on the other hand, am not pouting because I’ve been blessed with two great packages of late. The first being my kid’s CD swap from tracy and her girls.
Img_4429

She and I have decided to share the throne as "queens of procrastination" since we are both quite tardy on our swapping. Me being the tardiest of the two. But her package was definitely worth the wait. The music is phenomenal. I quickly took the CD with me on my errands while the girls were home napping with Dan. Much of the music (tho’ not the artists) is new and I love it! love it. And of course, sweet tracy and her girls packed in some extra goodies. For me, it was a bunch of scrumptious linen and some cram-cream deco tape (which I have been eyeing on ebay). And for the girls it was the cutest little bags, stickers, a sunprint kit and a hopscotch kit. (We had a mean game of hopscotch in the driveway that night!) So a big thank you to tracy and her girls. We love/loved/are loving it all!

And I also received my package of gift tags from dacia’s swap. they are all so lovely and unique. It is wonderful to see what everyone came up with. However, I took my picture of the tags outside on my porch, and just as I snapped the picture, one flew off the porch into a tall rose bush climbing up the steps. So the picture will have to wait until I retrieve the runaway tag. But they are all lovely. I promise.

Last night I finished Jeannette Walls’s book, The Glass Castle. Wow, she is an amazing writer, but what a horrible life story. If the book hadn’t been a true story of her life, I would definitely have put it down. It was one of those books that just left you feeling sick and gross in parts. Now, I’m picking up The Time Travellers Wife for next month’s book group, although Dan is dying for me to start reading his pick for me: Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry.

You’ll probably notice some additions to my blog sidebars, too. I went back to the old format again. I’ve added a list of books that I have out of the library right now. This week’s list includes some pottery books. After being ‘excused’ from the course work and going into the workshop, I’m starting to get a little insecure about my pottery knowledge. So I’ve been doing a little reading, which has turned out to be really inspiring and enjoyable.
I also added a list of books that the girl’s are looking at. I told Emma we were going to learn about something this week, and it could be anything we wanted. Then, we’d get some library books out it. She chose flowers, and she’s been carrying around that little field guide all week. Although I think she’s impartial to small books since she brought a book up to me in the library last week and said, "can we try to find some more books that are this size?"
Speaking of books and children, I read something in Real Simple’s Family special addition magazine this month that has me thinking. Some specialist on readding…(sorry, it’s not in front of me right now) reccommended that as parents, we do not censor the things that our chidren read. If they want to pick up a book about Barney or Barbie, let them do it. As long as they are reading, it’s all that matters. She says not to force the classics down their throats or try to dictate what they are or are not reading. Now, at first I could see her point, but the more I thought about it, the more I disagreed. I think it’s a lot like television and the shows we allow our kids to watch. If you let your children watch junk, they are going to want to watch more and more of it. It’s easy. It’s completely catered to them and their little innocent minds. Somehow those television producers know exactly what hooks our children and it makes them only want to watch more–and if left to their own channel surfing kids would end up only watching the junk like Teletubbies and My Little Pony cartoons.
The same goes for reading, in my opinion. If I let them read every commercial character story that they picked off the shelf, and every book that doubles as a piano and songbook, I bet they’d never come back to Blueberries for Sal or Ferdinand the Bull.-with their beautifully simple pictures and classic storylines. So yes, I’m going to censor what they read, just like I censor what they watch. And I’ll bet in the end they’re no less voracious of a reader. And I hope they’ll have a better appreciation for a timeless narrative, than a flashy piece of advertising disguised as literature.
phew. stepping down from my soap box. taking deep breath.

Last two quickies:
–a note about signing up for my email list. I get regular emails from people wondering when I’ll have buttons and more pendants for sale. I try to keep a rag-tag list together, but it’s pretty disorganized. So, if you’re interested in any of these things, or just finding out when I update my etsy shop, please send me an email and I’ll add you to the list. And if you’ve already contacted me, would you mind doing so one more time? Just so I can try to get it all in the same place. thanks.
–first batch of cuffs are in my etsy shop!

Pout
I caught my little four-going on-fourteen year old pouting behind my bed today. If you could see the rest of her, there’d be tightly crossed arms and a deep scowl. This is her new thing lately, finding a place to go off in a huff of anger. I can’t even remember what this was about this morning. Probably that I wouldn’t give her a second piece of toast with nutella on it or something….But anyway she pulled out of her slump and we’re all feeling much better now…
I, on the other hand, am not pouting because I’ve been blessed with two great packages of late. The first being my kid’s CD swap from tracy and her girls.
Img_4429

She and I have decided to share the throne as "queens of procrastination" since we are both quite tardy on our swapping. Me being the tardiest of the two. But her package was definitely worth the wait. The music is phenomenal. I quickly took the CD with me on my errands while the girls were home napping with Dan. Much of the music (tho’ not the artists) is new and I love it! love it. And of course, sweet tracy and her girls packed in some extra goodies. For me, it was a bunch of scrumptious linen and some cram-cream deco tape (which I have been eyeing on ebay). And for the girls it was the cutest little bags, stickers, a sunprint kit and a hopscotch kit. (We had a mean game of hopscotch in the driveway that night!) So a big thank you to tracy and her girls. We love/loved/are loving it all!

And I also received my package of gift tags from dacia’s swap. they are all so lovely and unique. It is wonderful to see what everyone came up with. However, I took my picture of the tags outside on my porch, and just as I snapped the picture, one flew off the porch into a tall rose bush climbing up the steps. So the picture will have to wait until I retrieve the runaway tag. But they are all lovely. I promise.

Last night I finished Jeannette Walls’s book, The Glass Castle. Wow, she is an amazing writer, but what a horrible life story. If the book hadn’t been a true story of her life, I would definitely have put it down. It was one of those books that just left you feeling sick and gross in parts. Now, I’m picking up The Time Travellers Wife for next month’s book group, although Dan is dying for me to start reading his pick for me: Hannah Coulter by Wendell Berry.

You’ll probably notice some additions to my blog sidebars, too. I went back to the old format again. I’ve added a list of books that I have out of the library right now. This week’s list includes some pottery books. After being ‘excused’ from the course work and going into the workshop, I’m starting to get a little insecure about my pottery knowledge. So I’ve been doing a little reading, which has turned out to be really inspiring and enjoyable.
I also added a list of books that the girl’s are looking at. I told Emma we were going to learn about something this week, and it could be anything we wanted. Then, we’d get some library books out it. She chose flowers, and she’s been carrying around that little field guide all week. Although I think she’s impartial to small books since she brought a book up to me in the library last week and said, "can we try to find some more books that are this size?"
Speaking of books and children, I read something in Real Simple’s Family special addition magazine this month that has me thinking. Some specialist on readding…(sorry, it’s not in front of me right now) reccommended that as parents, we do not censor the things that our chidren read. If they want to pick up a book about Barney or Barbie, let them do it. As long as they are reading, it’s all that matters. She says not to force the classics down their throats or try to dictate what they are or are not reading. Now, at first I could see her point, but the more I thought about it, the more I disagreed. I think it’s a lot like television and the shows we allow our kids to watch. If you let your children watch junk, they are going to want to watch more and more of it. It’s easy. It’s completely catered to them and their little innocent minds. Somehow those television producers know exactly what hooks our children and it makes them only want to watch more–and if left to their own channel surfing kids would end up only watching the junk like Teletubbies and My Little Pony cartoons.
The same goes for reading, in my opinion. If I let them read every commercial character story that they picked off the shelf, and every book that doubles as a piano and songbook, I bet they’d never come back to Blueberries for Sal or Ferdinand the Bull.-with their beautifully simple pictures and classic storylines. So yes, I’m going to censor what they read, just like I censor what they watch. And I’ll bet in the end they’re no less voracious of a reader. And I hope they’ll have a better appreciation for a timeless narrative, than a flashy piece of advertising disguised as literature.
phew. stepping down from my soap box. taking deep breath.

Last two quickies:
–a note about signing up for my email list. I get regular emails from people wondering when I’ll have buttons and more pendants for sale. I try to keep a rag-tag list together, but it’s pretty disorganized. So, if you’re interested in any of these things, or just finding out when I update my etsy shop, please send me an email and I’ll add you to the list. And if you’ve already contacted me, would you mind doing so one more time? Just so I can try to get it all in the same place. thanks.
–first batch of cuffs are in my etsy shop!

20 comments on “she’s pouting, I’m not (and at the end I get on my soapbox)”

  1. i so agree about the books – i think that they should have some say on what they read, but you can guide them to find good books that they will enjoy. A character book now and then is fine, but if you expose them to good books, they will recognize them as that and search for more.

  2. I kind of agree with the ‘expert’.I have never censored which books my girls read (age appropriate of course) and they still come back to the classics.I think they instinctively know the value of good writing.They are all advanced readers for their age and love books in general.The older girls are now free-readers so can chose their own books to read at school,the last one Lily chose was a 1950’s copy of Moby Dick!Barney and Barbie books do get read but hardly ever stick around. I doubt in 50 years whether someone will chose them for free reading!

  3. I was so glad to see another mom who has a “characters stay in the TV” rule. My daughter is 6 and often wants to grab that glitzy Barbie book from the library shelf, but even she is starting to notice that there’s “not much story” (her words) in them. Sometimes I begin to think I’m too militant about it – so thanks for the encouragement!

  4. I definitely agree with you on being picky about what you let your children read. My parents were strict too – almost no TV and only “good” books, and even though I sometimes felt left out when the other kids were talking about those characters, I really appreciate it now! Nurturing your childrens’ minds is the greatest gift you can give them.

  5. cute package of goodies…yay!

    and i found what you saidabout learning something eachweek and taking out the booksfrom the library very inspiring.

    i am trying to think of thingsthat i can do with my kidsfor the summerthat will be fun and educational.that just might be one of them:)(once i pay my huge library fee)(heh.)

    🙂

  6. I also just finished Glass Castle. My sis warned me that I might not be able to stomach a story about child neglect. I knew that the writer turned out ok, and that made all of the difference. The strange men coming into the house at night REALLY bothered me though. One part that irked me was when the dad took the $ that they were carefully saving up so that the older sis could leave town, AND she had to hitch a ride to take the SAT in hopes of getting a scholarship. I cheered when she made it out despite him. I thought that it was a great, great book.

  7. One more voice in agreement here… I believe that children can learn to love reading best, by reading the best their is. I am often in a state of clearing out their bookshelves, and removing the birthday gifts of character fame in favor of returning them to the great stories and endearing illustrations of classics – Miss Rumphius, or Homer Price. Even my middle child, age 3, loves a great chapter book, because the story is interesting, and because they know that I LOVE reading. Perhaps if there is a family where reading is not done much by the parents, reading anything is preferable. But since reading is considered a valuable treat in our family, I think they will love it for all the right reasons. Thanks for making me think more about this!

  8. Oh, those toes…I’ve seen that *look* more than a few times around here (Peter says Emma inherited her mom’s knack for drama). As far as censoring whatkids read, let’s just say, I’ve always been conscious and aware of what they are reading (I say “they” because Ian actually taught himself to read this past winter and we didn’t even realize it- go figure). We try to find a balance between the things “the other kids” are reading in class, the “my little pony-ish” category, and the classics. It’s such a fine line, I just try to trust my instinct, inject classics (we’re reading the little house on the prairie series before bed each night), and I try to be honest with her when I find a book that isn’t my first choice as to why. She recently picked a Pokemon book at a school swap, which I really don’t like. But, geez, she read the whole book in a day! I think she wondered what the hype was about. She’s now done with it and hasn’t mentioned it.

  9. I so agree on the censoring! (But of course that’s easy for me to say.. I don’t have any kids!)Somehow I think most of us needs to “learn” how to appreciate a good story and good literature. Sometimes when reading a book (it still works like this for me) you don’t see the greatness of it until you’ve finished – and finishing it can be a struggle. I’m so glad that I had someone that had the patience and insight to pull me through my classics when I was a kid – that makes all the difference in my appreciation for literature these days. It’s like learning a new skill – when you’re learning you’re often frustrated and want to quit the whole thing, but once you figure it out, the reward and the happiness and the feeling of accomplishment is oh so great. I’m glad I had someone pushing me and cheering me along, as I read the “hard” books!

  10. glad the package is being enjoyed!!as for the books i am with you. though i make a concession. i do let the girls choose whatever they want to bring home from the library. i find i’ll be asked to read “little pony” once, and “ferdinand” (oh such a good good book!!) over and over and over and over… my mom is an early-years literacy specialist and she fights for good lit in the schools (she is not a fan of Open Court etc) but will also concede that some children – usually those who aren’t read the quality lit at home – will only be excited by books if they feature a character they know. and in that sense it is a good intro to reading – hopefully leading to the “good stuff”. oh i could go on and on about this!!

  11. i’m of your opinion. i try not to totally censor the licensed character books, (so that they don’t become even more desirable), but i really keep them at a minimum and save my enthusiasm for the “good stuff”. great post!

  12. I think the ” As long as they are reading, it’s all that matters” argument is bunk. That’s like saying you can feed your kids cookies and chips and candy and pop for every meal and say “As long as they are eating, it’s all that matters”. Why would you feel ok giving a growing mind the equivalent of Cheetos to read for every “meal”?In my case, one of my kids watches Bob the Builder etc. and if he wants that book at the library that’s ok with me. I don’t let my kids read *whatever* they want, but a small amount of twaddle is tolerated. After all, we do eat ice cream and Doritos at our house, we just don’t allow them to become staples of our diet. The pantry is filled with mostly wholesome ingredients and the bookshelves are filled with mostly twaddle-free books.I hope that makes sense.

  13. Oh, dear! I just re-read my post and it sounds like I’m *accusing you* when what I really meant to do is *agree* with you! So sorry! When I said “you” in my post I meant it figuratively or collectively, not *you* specifically. I should have said “someone” instead of “you”. Very sorry! I’m shutting up now!

  14. Two things: I loved the Time Traveler’s Wife! I just finished reading it last weekend – I started and finished in 3 days! I love books like that. 2) I worked for a magazine about advertising and have been in the room with executives from Nickelodeon. You should be scared for your children. They know all and use evil tricks and deeds to snare them. You have every right to be mindful, and I would suggest FREAKED out by what the media is trying to do to your children…

  15. When I was an Enlish major in college, the “all books are equal” philosopy was held by all of my profs (The “all ideas are equal” was dominant too, but that’s a different post.), and I passionately disagreed. Now, I’ve softened just a bit and think that at certain early stages of a child’s reading, it is good that they can try out lots of different kinds of things and discover for themselves what they like. Mainly, b/c they are so interested in so many kinds of things I think it best to encourage that kind of curiousity and desire to learn. It may sound naive, but I strongly believe that good stories will win them over in the end; the classics have endured for a reason and it is not b/c educators have told us they are what we should read. Kids love a good story and pretty pictures (don’t we all??) and if we are enthusiastic about good books when they are young and their opinions are being formed, I think that goes a long way in leading them to the best books. The older that the kids get, though, I weed out more and more of the fluff and focus more on the good stuff. I actually wish we would have never let the characters into the house, though. Some of the movies are okay, but the books are usually soooooooo bad–ugh! It hurts me to read them. So, what I want to know is, is there a way to put them back into the tv for good?? 😉

  16. I stand in agreement with you about book choices. With *so many WONDERFUL books out there, why fill their little brains with fluff? No need.

  17. I so agree with censoring what my kids read. When we go to the library Jack is drawn to scary books, skeletons, and monsters. Yuck I hate them. Isn’t that our job as parents, to watch out for the well being of our children? I love the look of your blog, it looks very fresh and bright.

  18. Great photo of those little angry feet 🙂

    And I absolutely loved The Time Traveler’s Wife; hope you enjoy it!!

    (oh, and we finished watching Lost!)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.