Archive for the ‘family’ Category
But not for the reasons you suggest. See, some of us have the luxury of staying home with our kids. But we do without a lot of frills. But a lot of us don’t have the option of not working. Because the cost of living in the United States is outrageous. So we need to work for things like food and housing.
When I was working with people who are homeless, we quoted a pretty sad statistic about the amount of time someone working a minimum wage job had to work to afford an apartment. Since the required working hours was so outrageous it usually meant more than one adult working a few jobs to survive. Logically, women need to work in that environment. (The minimum wage has changed, housing prices are higher, so I’m not going to guess what the actual figures are at this point.)
Before that job I worked at a childcare center in a fairly affluent community. The childcare center catered to children in need who would be attending the local elementary school for kindergarten. Imagine my surprise when we visited with the kindergarten teachers about school preparedness and were handed a list of things the parents were expected to teach their children before they entered school: count to 100 and read a few words were the ones I’ve never forgotten.
Seriously? We tried explaining to the teachers that these parents didn’t have the means or the time for these things (many parents didn’t speak English and were working multiple jobs). Instead of being sympathetic, they were disdainful. Which pretty much sums up my opinion of the entire educational system in our country.
At a time when more women are working, schools have decided that parental involvement is mandatory for the teaching portion of education. Gone are the days when kids spend the day memorizing times tables and learning phonics. Instead, they are whipped into algebra and sight words before the basic foundation is laid for learning. Where kindergarten was once a transition for a child from no school to school, it has turned into a full-day frenzy to catch up with the rest of the world.
Instead of doing things like learning and discussing topics, the curriculum at my kids’ elementary school was based on getting good scores on the ISATs. Good God, achievement tests are supposed to be measures of what a child has learned, not be the entire basis of an educational system! But that is what has happened when every school and every teacher is judged on the scores of the children in their midst.
More moms work, so let’s pile on more homework so we can catch up to other nations. Good idea when mom and dad work and come home to cook, clean, parent, and supervise homework. And let’s make most of the homework busy work because there are mandatory homework time requirements for each day. Oh, and let’s not forgot to give first and second graders homework. Nothing builds a love of learning like having over-stressed mom and dad scream at you for not writing your spelling words out five times each fast enough.
Of course, busy work doesn’t mean just silly worksheets night after night. What about the plethora of projects? How many landmarks does a school really need? My personal favorite was the Halloween night homework. Yes, after taking your kids out to trick or treat, you were expected to sit down to help them sort candy and count it. That was always such a fun time with kids strung out on sugar!
Or pasting 100 Cheerios to a piece of paper for the 100 days of school celebrations. Food waste. Paper waste. Waste of time.
So, you see, Governor Bryant, you can blame all the working mothers that you want, but that won’t fix the fundamental problems with an educational system that doesn’t know what it’s doing. I know the politicians want to think that the never-ending rounds of testing will solve the problems; instead they feed them. By taking the fun and adventure out of learning, we are doomed. Instead of working with families to make everyone’s lives easier, teachers are panicking and sending home outrageous amounts of homework. Probably because the time they would like to spend actually teaching kids has been replaced with test prep.
It’s a vicious circle, and won’t be solved by blaming the people who are just doing their best to survive. Moms have enough guilt for working or nor working, thanks for adding a little more to their plates.
I keep reading the same messages this week about living life now. Right now. Not tomorrow. Not when the sun shines. Or you lose the weight. Or your hair is perfect. Or the stars, planet, and clouds all align. But Right. Now. This instant. No more waiting for perfect…because sometimes perfect never comes.
Check out Jeanette DePatie (A.K.A. The Fat Chick) here.
Check out Kath from Fat Heffalump here.
Most of all, watch this video–the whole thing–for the most inspiring young man ever, Zach Sobiech.
In a world where we’re constantly being told we don’t measure up. That we aren’t thin enough or beautiful enough. Where even Disney is getting into the business of body shaming by taking a beloved girl character and turning her into a vamp. It’s nice to come across a woman who has her priorities straight and her dreams for her daugher seem healthy.
When Jaime Moore’s daughter turned five, she wanted a special photography session to mark the momentous occasion. She didn’t dress the young girl in evening wear or dress her like a Julie Roberts character. Instead, she dressed Emma as real-life heroines.
I love this! (Yet another reason to wish for daughters…)
Who are the heroines? Real women who changed the world of women for the better: Susan B. Anthony, Amelia Earhart, Coco Chanel, Jane Goodall, and Helen Keller. What a list!
Isn’t it nice in the age of dance moms, real housewives, and faux celebrities to have actual women who have actual accomplishments recognized in such a positive way? What a gift Moore has given her daughter!
Who would you like to dress up as? Are their heroines Moore should add?
Last week the verdict for Jodi Arias came in, and I was waiting on pins and needles. Would she be guilty? Would she be acquitted? If guilty, what charge? I checked my phone. I was glued to the HLN website when I wasn’t at home glued to the HLN channel. At night I watched Nancy Grace and Dr. Drew.
Then I saw the verdict being read. I cried. I grew sad for us as a people.
There was something so primal and disturbing about the chanting outside the Maricopa County courthouse. Americans chanting for death. It was surreal. We see this from foreign countries, from faraway lands. It’s not supposed to happen in the middle of our own country. I grew afraid for the jury if they happened to make the “wrong” decision. Would the crowd outside attack them?
I felt the same way after the Casey Anthony verdict. People were so opinionated and full of vitriol. I knew the jury didn’t take their task lightly. No jury does. Sure you probably have a group of people who would rather be somewhere–anywhere–else. But they are told again and again–even before the trial begins–that they have a responsibility to be partial and fair. Without prejudice.
Something the frothing crowd of chanting Americans was not full of.
When the verdict was read, I felt no glee. I felt nothing but grief and horror for both families. Travis Alexander’s family and friends lost him years ago. Hopefully they have some relief and can start on the road to healing. I hope their positive loving memories eventually eclipse the ones of the Travis that was presented to the nation in a court of law.
It’s Jodi’s family that is left with the debris of this entire mess. Jodi’s personality disorder means she’s self-centered and self-serving. She has no concern for the grief she has rained down upon two families. Jodi’s parents are left with the image of people chanting for their daughter’s death. Inside, they must be blaming themselves. They are wondering what they did wrong. Going through every moment of Jodi’s childhood, they are trying to pinpoint the one mistake they made that can explain all of this.
Did they yell when they should have hugged? Were they fed up with her behavior and offered consequences? It doesn’t matter. Chances are they will suffer the guilt of Travis’ death more than their daughter. It will be a long time until they can walk through their town without feeling self-conscious.
I hope the Arias family finds peace. I hope that Jodi’s parents come to realize that they can’t be responsible for their grown daughter’s actions in this case. Nothing they did when Jodi was eight, 12, 15, or 25 made her commit murder. That responsibility is on her own shoulders. It was her choice. Her actions.
More than anything, I hope I never see Americans chanting for anyone’s death ever again.
Mother’s Day is quickly approaching. And the question on everyone’s mind in KlineLand is, “what do you want?!”
It’s so hard this year because I want…nothing, really. World peace. Cliche, I know, but I mean it. A nice family dinner with laughter and teasing. One week without angst of any kind.
See, I’m a simple girl!
Plus I’ve been trying to do that less-is-more life style. Which my new found love of card making–yes, again!–isn’t helping. But I don’t want things…
Yesterday I finally used one of the two gift certificates for massages I got for last year on Mother’s Day and my birthday. This year they are the same day. It was so nice and relaxing. Plus the masseuse (Carrie at the Elements Massage in Bloomingdale) was fun. I laughed and enjoyed the conversation while getting a massage. Perfect day.
This year I will be 47 years old–oops, I mean something with a 9 in it…29!–and I have everything I want. Or I just buy it when I want it. Except for my convertible. I’m still waiting for that. With the current sun rash I have, the desire to own a convertible seems pretty impractical. I bet my dermatologist would be in heaven if I get one though. A convertible…not another rash. Well, he would appreciate the rash.
Maybe I should just ask for full-body sun protection. That would save all of us from the pain of my complaining…
This is a promotional post for Conscious Box. All opinions are my own. Any misinformation is also mine! I will be receiving a Conscious Box for posting and one will be provided to one reader who will be selected from commenters to this post. The deadline for entering is noon on May 12, 2013. The winner will be announced on May 13, 2013. For complete information about entering, please read through to the bottom of the post. Good luck!
Let’s do a giveaway! Next week is my birthday! Thanks for asking, I’ll be 29! (Again…uh hum!) And it’s Mother’s Day!
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