Monday, May 21, 2012


At the supermarket: It’s very delicious in here.

After taking oral medicine:  It sounds like cherry. It sounds like candy.

You have to come and see.  You have to come and see this tower I built.

May I knock it over… with my tongue?
[Walking over to block tower on toy box, sticking out tongue, knocking blocks over with it]

About the pretty cirrus clouds: May I catch one?  May I catch one, Mommy?

As we’re walking toward the path to the woods: Maybe we see deer. Maybe we see butterflies. Maybe we also see dinosaurs.

As I’m strapping him into the car seat:  Are we going for a drive?  Will you text Holly?


On our way to help daddy, who’s truck has stalled on the side of the road.
ME: We have to go give daddy a jump.  His car is stuck.
CAYCE: Are we going to get daddy out of a hole?

Singing, singing constantly. Songs from nursery rhymes, songs from cartoons, theme songs, Christmas songs, especially Christmas songs…It may be near June, but my wee one is still enchanted with Frosty the Snowman, was a jolly, happy soul… Rudolph-a-nose-a-reindeer…had a very shiny nose… You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch… Lately he’s been picking up sticks and putting them in his mouth, saying he needs a corn cob pipe… I haven’t been too fond of that… Of course, Frosty is old school, before the days of political correctness…

The made up songs are the best… last week, on our way to music class downtown, the cherry blossoms were in full bloom.
ME: Look at those big pink trees, Cayce.
CAYCE: They cherry trees.
ME: You’re right, Cayce. They’re cherry trees.
CAYCE: I need to sing a song about cherry trees… I’m singing a song about cherry trees… I’m singing a song about cherry trees…[he sang all the way to town].  

After Daddy takes [something] away from him: Hey, wait a minute. We need that for our contest.

Holding up a broom handle diagonally, squatting beneath it: Let’s do lumbo.  Let’s do lumbo.  

Putting the easter basket upside down on his head:  I am a knight in a-shiming armor. I am a knight in a-shiming armor…

Handing me the basket: Will you be a knight in a-shiming armor?

Whenever we come across a lone person, be they male or female: Who's that guy?

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Mom Wars: One Mother's Perspective

As a mom who still nurses a toddler well on his way to three, I had mixed reactions to the controversial cover to the new Time Magazine. A three something boy is standing on a stool, next to his svelte mom, onto whose exposed breast he is firmly latched.

I confess I haven’t yet read the article, but I have read a vast array of responses, from the often enraged and repulsed comments on facebook links to the article, to the more comprehensive open letter response from Mothering Magazine here……. to the refreshingly funny take from comedian Jason Good here.

While I was glad to see extended nursing getting news coverage, the provocative title, “Are You Mom Enough?” is divisive in ways that do no good to us moms. At first I was glad that if it was going to be divisive, it at least appeared to come out on the side of extended nursing. But in the end, I feel that such an extreme cover image is only about selling magazines, and not about building communities of mothers. In fact, it would be useful for us moms to remember that people are profiting by putting us at odds with one another.

 What’s wrong with the picture on the cover of Time? Nursing a toddler doesn’t look like that. I have never seen a toddler nursing standing up. A mom and her nursing toddler do not look like an exhibitionistic, infatuated young couple walking down the street immersed in a slurping, smooching public display of affection.

 Generally, a mom nurses her toddler sitting or lying down. The child may curl up, assume a fetal position to nestle into the warmth of mother’s body. While it may not be very common to see moms nursing their toddlers in public, when you do, it’s not nearly so blatant or audacious. If you look, the toddler will not look back at you looking at him. Most likely, if a child approaches out of curiosity, the nursing toddler will unlatch and go about his merry play. At least that’s what my child does, since he never wants to miss out on any of the fun playing with other little people.

 I remember years ago, I was walking through a Whole Foods store on Houston Street in the East Village. It was before I had my own child, or even knew that becoming a mother would soon be my fate. My friend and I were making our way to the bathroom at the back of the restaurant area. Right in my line of vision, as we walked toward the east wall, a woman was sitting at a table with a large toddler boy on her lap, nursing. I looked. Or, I should say, I didn’t look away.

 “It’s called breastfeeding,” she snapped, with that oh so New York, talk-to-the-hand attitude.

The mom in the Whole Foods might be surprised if she could see me now, fast forward a few years, looking much like her with a long-legged toddler sometimes dangling from my lap while he fuels up.

It saddens me to think that I may lose friends, and worse, that my son may lose friends, because people are turned off somehow by what to us is the most natural thing in the world. Whatever choices we make as mothers, it seems that every mom is on the defensive these days. I guess that’s because moms in general are under attack. We are constantly being judged. It is always, it seems, Damned if we do, damned if we don’t. Women are judged if we don’t have any children, and we’re judged if we have too many. We are judged if we don’t breastfeed our babies, then we’re judged again if we breastfeed them too long. We are judged if we put them in day care, and we’re judged if we stay at home. All this judging tends to put moms in separate corners of the boxing ring, when we should be holding hands in the center, saying “Ommmmm.”

 I recently wrote about the messy house factor in my life as the mom of a toddler. I wrote that I hoped visitors would be so enchanted with my friendly and engaging child that they wouldn’t notice by bad housekeeping. Well, I would also hope that my community of moms and dads and nannies and teachers would forgive us our brief public transgressions into the private world of mama’s milk, and notice instead that my son is happy and well mannered and loves to sing and play and treats them and their children and their pets with kindness and respect and something more, something just a little bit more… something in fact more like reverence, more like love.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My Ever So Brief Type A Moment

Good morning. This is just a quick post to say, sorry for my absence, to have been "remiss", "aloof", whatever it feels like when I don't get on my soap box and blog a bit.

I thought it would be cute and Martha-esque of me to post a pic of a Type A moment. I don't have them very often, you know, or if I do, I don't tend to brag about them.

But alas, here we are, with this photo-worthy berry muffin.

I couldn't resist the opportunity to boast my baking skills. Our baking skills, I should say, since the two and three-quarter year old helped me with it, standing on a dining chair C pulled over by himself. He beamed with anticipation, pouring and mixing ingredients I measured in a cup, saying things like Cima-mom. I love cia-mom.

Poor kid. Lately he's been getting the short end of the stick on childhood delights like pancakes, muffins and cookies, since all of it was putting my gut into a tizzy.

After numerous tests, two visits to the doctor's office and a Sunday trip to the E.R., I learned that the horrid sounding diverticulitis that I thought was raging inside me was in fact the more ridiculolus and nerdy sounding splenic flexure syndrome. [Spell check, please?]

While I'm reassured that I'm not going to die, I'm not so keen on learning that I'm officially an old, nerdy mom whose body does embarrassing things in public. It will bellow it's wind and C will ask, What's that sound? and I will borrow a line from his paternal grandfather, whom neither of us ever knew except through his famous one liners, Low flying geese.

C will laugh a wonderful, hearty laugh.


 Hopefully, by the time a few years roll around that may teach him to be ashamed of such things, I will have become a greens devouring diva whose colon won't cause a scene at school events, one who has mastered the art of a long and joyous life.

 But may that life olease include a blueberry muffin or two.

 I'm happy to be writing again. I'm also so glad to announce that I'll be writing for an exciting new Nantucket community website,, which is going live this Monday. So look for me there, as well.