Two Years Later

Tracy and Brian's Wedding

Two years ago my life was irrevocably altered.  I stepped off a plane in Toronto ready for a week of celebration for my daughter’s second birthday and my mother’s sixty-first.  I stepped into my dad’s house and was taken aside and told my mother was found dead that morning from a stroke.  Nothing has been the same.  My heart keeps beating, I keep going, but for two years I have … [Read more...]

Evolution, Crying, and the Fallacy of a Different Environment

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“Parents used to have to stop their baby crying because if they didn’t, they’d all be eaten by wild animals, but we don’t live in that world anymore so isn’t that a rather outdated way of looking at parenting?” ~ Too many people to count, often in attempts to justify leaving children to cry I have heard the above mentioned time and time and time again.  In our efforts to make … [Read more...]

Would You Work For No Pay?

me and maddy

When I was first given this video to watch, the preamble was: "Watch to the end to see why millions have taken on the thankless job" so before I talk about it, you should watch it too... I'll admit I thought I was going to watch some epic revelation about our economy and why people are taking anything.  I didn't expect this.  I'll also admit that it did pull on the … [Read more...]

Evolutionary Parenting: Where History and Science Meet Parenting

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Our society – heck, all societies – have their ideas about how to raise children.  I can go to a bookstore here in Vancouver and find hundreds of books on parenting.  From sleep to feeding to schedules to discipline to all-around philosophies based on someone’s observations of the world, you name it, it’s probably there.  The question I have to ask is: What good does it do us? … [Read more...]

My Problems with RIE

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Many people subscribe to the RIE theory of raising children espoused most famously by Magda Gerber, currently popularized by individuals like Janet Lansbury.  Standing for “Resources for Infant Educarers”, RIE is a philosophy that focuses on respect of a child as an independent person that we must observe in order to gain our own awareness of them.   I don’t know enough about … [Read more...]

Does The Thought Count?

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I remember reading somewhere that a doctor said that he never worried about parents who were reading all the books on parenting out there, that so long as they were actively seeking sources, he knew they cared enough that the children would turn out fine.  As much as I want to agree with the sentiment, it’s something I’ve struggled with.  For example, I have met parents who … [Read more...]

5 Tips for Dealing with a Crying Baby

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I don’t know a person who doesn’t hate the sound of a crying baby.  It can elicit feelings of helplessness, anger, frustration, and sadness.  At times, we are utterly incapable of effectively stopping the crying which compounds these feelings even more.  One of the biggest concerns in our society is something called “Shaken Baby Syndrome” whereby parents feel so helpless and … [Read more...]

Lucky

Lucky

One of the things I hate is when others use the term 'lucky' with reference to one’s kids.  It’s something I hear a lot of because I have a 'good' baby, but it frustrates me because I am not just lucky, just as a woman with a baby who is always inconsolable without medical reason isn't just unlucky.  I have a high-needs child who I have been able to respond to using practices … [Read more...]

Guest Post: Happy

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By Mama Bean “What right have you got to be happy, anyway?” I felt like I’d been struck by lightening; my whole body froze.  I could feel my teeth clench together as my jaw clamped shut.  I could not utter another word. I had dared to confide my teenage angst in someone who should have known better than to shame and belittle me.  I had dipped my toe into a pool of hope … [Read more...]

What Children Don’t “Need” Can Still Help Them

maddy at the boob

By Tracy Cassels “Your baby is now old enough that s/he doesn’t need to feed during the night.” “Your child doesn’t need to sleep in your room or in your bed.” “Your baby doesn’t need to be held this much.” “Your child doesn’t need to still be breastfeeding.” Sound familiar?  In today’s society parents are often given the unsolicited advice about what their child “doesn’t … [Read more...]