Throughout the year, I read many parenting pieces, several of which lament the over-scheduled, too-structured lives of our children. They wax poetic about the good ole days of playing outside until it got dark, inventing wacky games and the general ease of a childhood long gone. In the same pieces, those same writers lament about all of the activities they have to schlep to, the numerous play dates they’d rather not do and how they are exhausted from what they have presumed they must be in today’s parenting climate.
But, there is hope.
In my short time as a mom, I have seen more push back against the over-scheduled, helicopter-style parenting of the past decade or so. The free-range movement is gaining popularity, and more parents are embracing the idea of “less is more.” We are tired of being tired, and we want our kids to have the less structured childhood we remember so fondly.
If we want our kids to have a “freer” childhood, we have to make it possible. Continue reading →
My mother often calls me, “Miss Law and Order,” not because I work in the legal field, but because, from a young age, I tended to always follow the rules. If my family played a game together, you can bet I observed everyone’s moves closely, lest they attempt to cheat. My mom, who is never one to just go with convention, would chide me for being no fun.
My innate desire for things to abide by a predetermined set of regulations regularly clashes with my desire to let my children engage in free play. I fight my urge to grab the instruction manual and shout, “No, this is how you do it!” Continue reading →
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 →
Growing up as a girl in America, my life was full of Barbies. Though my memory is somewhat foggy, I am confident I had close to a hundred over the course of my childhood. I loved my Barbies. I loved dressing them in the best of late 80s fashion. I loved playing salon with them, at the expense of many a bad haircut. I loved all the typical girly things one can do with a Barbie.