Love for Mother Nature in SF

Right now so many people are leaving San Francisco in search of the “Real Summer.” For the day or a week, people want sun, heat, water play that doesn’t give you frostbite, beaches where you won’t need wooly hats. Ok, I get it. But it’s not for me. This summer I am embracing San Francisco, … Continue reading

Tantrum-Free Summer: Week 1 Bread Day

As I mentioned before, during the school year my daughter had many intense tantrums. I wondered why . . . New baby? Postpartum cranky mom? Just normal for her age? But a new answer is coming clear that trumps all the rest. Overstimulation. The social setting can easily overstimulate my daughter to the point of distress, … Continue reading

Summer Nature Days

For most of the summer it will be just the three of us all day, every day . . . One year-old, four year-old, and me. To see some friends at least once a week, in an environment that inspires cooperation rather than competition, I’ve organized this. A weekly nature/hiking day mostly with other school … Continue reading

Riding the Seasonal Rhythms

All through the school year I’ve been feeling conflicted. The days when I am home with both children all day, I determine our daily rhythms. Together we cycle up and down, from bursts of focused activity to a return to mellow solo imaginative play. In breath, out breath. I am in the background all day … Continue reading

Spanish Songs for Spring

Our family is bilingual, and we speak only Spanish in our home. We constantly remind my daughter to speak to us in Spanish, but since she started going to school in English this has gotten a lot harder. It’s so important to my husband that his children speak with him in the language his own … Continue reading

To My Fellow White Parents

Dear white parents touring the public schools, I believe that you don’t mean it to be as bad as it sounds. But when you say, “that school has too many Latin families for me,” or “I’m not ready for my child to experience so much diversity,” it does offend me. Think of the message it … Continue reading

Safety and Peace at School

In my experience, school has not been a safe place. There is school violence and bullying to start, but there is more. Feeling unsafe, sometimes physically, and often emotionally, I found school to be a place of conflict, antagonism, defensiveness, and isolation. Learning, too, but that took second. I started out in urban public schools. … Continue reading

I Feel You, Bebe (Finding Empathy)

I’d say my profoundest discovery about the postpartum period is this: human evolution has developed us mamas to empathize and identify with our new babies when they need it most. I’m talking about that feeling of rawness and overwhelm, like the world is too big, too bright, too loud. I wrote in the past about … Continue reading

Baby Brother born from an Ocean

Welcome to the August 2013 Carnival of Natural Parenting: Sibling Revelry This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have written about siblings — their own, their hopes for their kids, and more. Please read to the end … Continue reading

How I Prepared for Birth and Postpartum

As I mentioned in his birth story, I prepared in a myriad of ways during the months before my son’s birth. This preparation and the week-long build-up helped me cope with his super-fast birth! Having learned from my daughter’s birth, I most wanted to change two things this time: to have a birth team that was empowering rather … Continue reading