The meanies lost, or how I taught my four-year-old about the Holocaust 

I watched my son gaze curiously at the wall of the synagogue; his eyes falling on a worn and tattered scroll behind a glass display.

We were visiting my parents’ synagogue during the first two two days of Passover, and my son wanted to learn more about the Torah, the hand-scribed scroll of the Old Testament, which hung on the wall. This particular Torah was desecrated by the Nazis during World War Two and was recovered by the Jewish people. This sacred object was very much a symbol of the resilience of my community and a source of pride for the synagogue.

My inquisitive four-year-old examined the tears and burnt markings and wanted to know what happened. He understood the Torah was usually kept in the Aron Kodesh, or holy cabinet, and is used during Jewish prayer service. He wanted to know why this particular Torah was behind glass.

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Play in the rain

Rainy days were awesome at summer camp. We put on our least favorite clothing (hopefully for our parents’ sake),  find an open space in the middle of the field and plunge on to our bellies. Sliding through the mud we didn’t care how wet and filthy we became. We were kids having fun.

I’m guessing you have a similar story from your childhood. Remember how amazing stomping in puddles felt? The sound of the splashing water. The squishy sensation of your boats. The smell of rain. Continue reading

5 reasons why you need clear knee mom jeans

I’ve never been much of a trendsetter. And I’m certainly not keeping up with what’s on fleek now that I am a mom. Every once in awhile, though, something so awesome comes along to stop me right in my yoga pants.

Enter the “Clear Knee Mom Jeans” from Topshop.

Now, you may wonder why you should spend your hard-earned money on a pair of pants with holes covered by the same material your grandmother uses to protect her sofa, but, rest assured, this is $95 well spent.

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Photo Credit: Nordstrom.com

Here are five reasons you need these pants in your life.

1. Cleaning up after your kids. No longer do your knees have to suffer the sting of being jabbed by one of your tot’s Legos. These pants offer the kind of industrial protection you need for tidying up any playroom. Continue reading

The truth about working from home with kids

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When I was pregnant with my first child, I decided I would keep working. My job as a writer/editor enabled me to work from home, and, while it didn’t pay a lot, it did provide decent insurance coverage for my family. My husband, then an independent contractor, also worked from home. Our ability to work where we wanted and flexible schedules, in theory, gave us the perfect scenario for keeping our jobs while raising our children.

Before my baby was born, I arranged, what I thought at the time, was a pretty sweet setup. I would work from home four days a week and come in to the office for one. I could be at home with my child and still work. On those days I had to be in the office, my husband could take care of the baby. What kick-ass parents we would be. Killing it in the workforce and as parents.

Then our son was born.

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To my fellow stay-at-home moms on a ‘day without women’

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On March 8, thousands (millions?) of women will forego working in support of “A Day Without Women,” a protest organized by those behind the Women’s March on Washington.

The organizers are well-meaning, but what’s that they say about “good intentions?”

According to the organizers’ website, women can participate in one or all of the following ways:

  1. Taking off from work (paid or unpaid)
  2. Only shopping at small, women- and minority-owned businesses
  3. Wearing red

With the exception of option three (unless red just really isn’t in your color wheel), if you are someone, like me, who is a full-time caregiver for your small children, “taking off” simply isn’t possible. Continue reading

Mom-shaming is bad enough, so don’t fuel it with fake fire

By now you are familiar with the story of the birth photographer who told a potential customer her cesarean delivery wasn’t a real birth. The photographer chastised the pregnant woman for “cutting corners” and choosing surgery over vaginal birth. The alleged text message exchange was first posted on the Sanctimommy Facebook page and has since been covered by Scary Mommy, Daily Mail, Glamour and more. Mom groups buzz with disdain for the photographer and disbelief over her insensitivity.

How could someone who works with pregnant women be so cruel?

I’d say ask the photographer, but, she doesn’t exist.

Yup, this so-called exchange fueling the mom wars never happened. Continue reading

5 Easy ways to add science to your preschooler’s day

My family spends much of our day outside, mostly to keep our two boys from climbing off the walls. On those days when the weather is too gross to be outdoors, I often turn to engaging experiments and projects to pass the time.

You don’t need much to spark the little scientist in your kid: just some objects you have around the house and some curiosity does the trick.

Here are five simple ways to get started:

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