Monday, February 28, 2011

The no-fail parenting solution that will change everything

In response to my post on davening with young children in the house, the excellent Glad Hatter commented:
Amazing! I have just been living off the hope that all the extra davening I got when I was single is filtering into these years and keeping my average up. I run tot shabbat, but this should hopefully get me a little yom tov davening! IYH it'll keep working for you!
I had to laugh at myself when I saw that last bit—Glad Hatter’s lovely wish that my system will keep working for me. I am not so confident about the parenting enterprise that I often make predictions, but here I am secure in forecasting the following:

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Why All Victories, Part I

Since I launched the blog, a few people have asked me why I chose the title “All Victories.” There are a few reasons, so I’ll start with the first and hopefully get to the others at another time.

Since I moved to Nachlaot and started running into Jenny in the course of my days, she has occasionally urged me to start writing a blog. I think her main point was that more women parenting young children need to share their voices. And I really wanted to listen to Jenny because I think she is wise and I like to listen to wise people. But I really really did not want to start a blog. Not at all.

Monday, February 14, 2011

How I daven with three young children at home

Bribes. Bribes deserve a post of their own. Here is how I use bribes to get some praying done Shabbat morning. Unlike the rest of the week, when my kids are at nursery school or babysitting, on Shabbat they are all around in their lively glory, and it can be quite challenging to pray.

Wait, first let me tell you what I do NOT do. I do not try to engage in solemn communion with my Creator with the child cyclone swirling around me. I tried this briefly the other week—snatching a quick mincha while the kids ate dinner so very nicely. My darling A.N. promptly starting using her fork to drum on the pine dining table, so instead of thinking about prayer I was thinking “Gouge gouge gouge. Gouge gouge gouge.”

Pine is a soft wood.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Elevating the pink

The discussion around Peggy Orenstein’s new book, Cinderella Ate My Daughter caught my attention. See, I have young girls, and there’s a lot of princess talk in my house, too. And most of it is coming from me.

I tell my young daughters to sit like princesses, no feet on the table. Meals are served in “princess portions,” and if they finish that, they can ask for seconds. When they behave in a way that is beneath their station, I tell them, “You are princesses; I expect more of you.”