If We Could Only Bottle Our Kids’ Joy!

If there were a way to bottle joy, someone would be rich. We’d see billboards plastered everywhere, infomercials hawking the commodity, and venture capitalists fighting one another for the best way to cash in. If there were a way to bottle young kids’ joy, someone would be over-the-moon-and-back-again rich. Nothing is better than pure giggles of delight from your child, smiles that stretch so wide they look like they might hurt, and that glistening... Read More

Holiday Traditions, Old and New

I grew up in a tiny family, my husband in a large one. While the celebrations of his youth were characterized by a lot more noise and a lot more food than mine, both of ours were centered around family and an abundance of love. Both of ours, too, were made all the more memorable by uniquely special mothers. Now that we have our own nuclear family—and at 3, my son is just discovering the joys of Christmas this year—we wanted to start some traditions... Read More

Send a Different Message to Our Kids, Please

Gender-neutral toys—if one were to walk into the typical toy store, one would have no idea such a thing existed. The boys’ section heralded by huge yellow trucks, the girls area a celebration of pink: These stores predispose shoppers to think inside prescribed boxes. But what’s fun about that? The New York Times reported on Monday that with consumer research showing that more dads are buying the toys these days, new toys are being introduced... Read More

Back-to-School Shopping, New Century Style (Plus, a Most Enduring Pick)

Indulging in a well-deserved rainbow cookie after our shopping spree at The Children’s Place When I was in fourth grade I remember convincing my mom to buy me a copy of Seventeen magazine—quite a few years ahead of time, but it was aspirational, like Vogue to an adult, right? The September issue was the back-to-school bible, thick-spined with ads as interesting as the editorial stories. I pored over every page, dog-earing those with clothes... Read More

Scavenging a Family History

My mom was the smallest in her dance class, far right (she was also the littlest on her basketball team). I hated history classes when I was a kid. Dates, political parties, wars, and speeches did little to engage my young mind, and I never encountered a teacher who presented history in a story-like or relatable way. I am not sure if my relatively newfound fascination with history is due to TV (my combined hatred for reality shows and interest in... Read More