Monday, September 29, 2008

UCC Steeples ads on YouTube


As a member of 2 UCC churches, I think this YouTube page of UCC Steeples ads is just fabulous.

There was a grassroots call for UCC churches around the country to make a video of their folks reciting "Here's the church, here's the steeple, open the doors, see all the people." The UCC has long used this childhood rhyme to express its welcome to ALL of God's people.

You will start to see the "official" UCC Steeples ad starting tonight at 6 p.m. You can also watch it here. I'm so happy to be a part of this denomination.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Baby sister & singing

Evan has long called Amelie "baby", which is fine...it's not like we gave her an easy name for him to say. ;-) But I always make a point of saying "yes, that's your baby sister Amelie" so he'll keep hearing her name and learn to say it eventually. Well, now he calls her "baby sister"!

He is saying more and more words these days and it is so cute. And he loves music. He gets a chair and brings it over to the kitchen radio to get up and try to turn on the cd. He asks for the "ABC song" (although I think he says it more like "CDEF song" or something (off of an Elizabeth Mitchell cd -she is great!). And he does a similar move to get up to the satellite radio in our room and ask for "XM KIDS!".

He started singing songs (or at least parts of them) a while ago in church - Peace Like A River and our "Amen" song were the first songs he ever sang. Then he started singing the last word in each line of songs - especially in songs that rhyme, which was really cute.

But NOW, he sings whole songs! Granted, some words are missing and/or garbled, but it is so cute! Some favorites are theme songs to shows. I know I should be ambivalent about this reflection on the fact that he watches too much tv, but I just love when he sings along to the theme songs to Fifi & the Flowertots and Jack's Big Music Show and Caillou ("with Mommy and Daddy and fining my way" just makes me tear up ;-). Ok - listen here and tell me this isn't sweet.

Ok. I just should not blog at 5 am - it makes for way too much mush.

Friday, September 26, 2008

teaching children about money


Here is a great twist on a childrens' bank. It is called Learning Cents. I had seen one like it somewhere else, but can't remember where. Anyway, it has a slot for money to spend, money to save, and money to give to charity. I love that last one. What a great way to teach children early about giving away some of what you have, either to those who have less, or to some other cause to make the world a better place. I like that this one has the word for charity in Hebrew, Tzedakah, which actually translates "justice", according to Wikipedia. ;-)I love the multicultural lesson inherent in this bank, as well.

Facebook | Suicide | Self-harm | Depression - Awareness & Support Day

A former student of mine has a support group on Facebook, to provide support but also raise awareness about suicide, self-harm and depression. I am so proud of the work he is doing. It is the kind of thing I hope my kids never need but live in the kind of community where people do these kinds of things. And I hope they grow up empowered to work to make a difference like this!

March 1, 2009, there willl be a Suicide/Self-harm/Depression Awareness & Support Day in Newton, MA.

I hope this blog gets more traffic before then so someone might learn about it here. ;-)

Warm Prayers,
Amy

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

The World as It Should Be

This is another example of why I am voting for Bacack Obama. If my children should be gay or lesbian, bisexual or transgender, I want them to live in The World as It Should Be

Poetry & Parenting

I'm very excited to be taking my first poetry course in a looooong time! It is a 3 session class callled "Poetry & Parenting". My last one was way before my 2 year old was born. When I first saw that the only offering through the Bedford Learning Connection, my reaction was one of "Oh man, I can't even escape parenting in a poetry workshop!" But then I thought about it? What brings me more joy? What brings me more frustration? What am I most invested in?

So this workshop is actually perfect. The description says we'll look at Sharon Olds poems, for one. This is exciting. I loved her from the first poem I read of hers. Her mothering poems struck a chord in my baby pangs (I'd wanted children for such a long time). She has a new collection out called One Secret Thing. I've been enjoying her Strike SparksL: Selected Poems", and expect some of her best mothering poems from this collection will be among conversation at my workshop!

Take Action | Save Darfur


I don't know about you, but I tend to "forget" about problems so huge, it seems there isn't anything I can do. Darfur is one such emergency. But I found at least one website that give lists some ways we all *can* Take Action to Save Darfur. If you happen upon this post, visit the site today.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Let's get real...

I started this blog to keep memories of the babies, and to say a little something about what matters to me as a parent. After becoming a parent, all the stuff I felt passionate about seemed to intensify...like leaving this world better than I found it became even more important. And seeing some of the hideous stuff that goes on in our country and the world was more troublesome. And having a faith community became more vital.

And well, being real seems more important. Well, let's get real. I know not many folks read this (like I have one wonderful friend who calls himself a "fan" of my blog...thank you, David! :-). But on the chance someone does read this, I thought I should post about the one thing I haven't posted about. I have posted about all the wonderful things my babies are doing, all the wonderful things I see out in the world (Like Voices Rising!), and the things that trouble me (McCain, Iraq, etc.). But I haven't said anything about my daily reality.

Raising children with a disability is freakin' hard! LOL! Right now I'm having a peaceful day. I have to keep my oldest behind the gate that keeps him in our bedroom and his. He has started to do things out in the kitchen that could get him seriously hurt, and I just can't physically do a lot about it.

{{Sigh}} To be honest, these have been very mellow days, because he hasn't been making the messes he used to make, either. But it just brings home the fact that I'm "not like other mothers". And I "know" that I'm not different in any way that really matters....most days. And in fact I know that my disability has given me insights and abilities that I can pass on to my children that they will benefit from...like teaching them to appreciate that their reality is not everyones' reality. And that we need to work for a just world for everyone. And you don't have to let barriers keep you from doing what really matters to you. But then I have other days where I just feel inept and inferior.

So now I can feel better if any other disabled moms happen upon this blog that I've been honest. ;-) That's a relief.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Our First Bedford Day

I'm looking forward to our first Bedford Day. We've been here for 2 other Bedford days, but had a 4 month old the first year, and a 3 month old the second. ;-)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Rev. Debra Haffner: Yes, Sex Education in Kindergarten!

I liked the Rev. Debra Haffner's recent Huffington Post pieceYes, Sex Education in Kindergarten!. She not only addresses the importance of educating children about their bodies *early*, but slams the republicans for trying to scare people thinking that Barack Obama would have us teaching 5 years olds about intercourse and birth control.

Palin's stance of abstinance only education scares me. And yeah...the easy one...how's that workin' for her family? Blessings to her daughter on her tough and courageous decision, but come on! You can teach your children that it is a great thing to wait for marriage, but you have to prepare them in case the *don't* make the decision YOU would choose for them!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Voices Rising....and oh, how they rose!


Yesterday was a celebration for the First Church of Bedford to mark their decision to become an Open & Affirming church. To mark the event, we invited the woman's choral group Voices Rising. They were amazing! They sing so beautifully, and with such passion. My favorite selection was No Turning Back by Pat Humphries. (This link is to an NPR piece where you can hear No Turning Back *and* Swimming to the Other Side, an old favorite of mine.)

My children are two and one, so they were home so as to not totally interrupt the performance. But I can't wait for them to hear this kind of music live. Music that celebrates what ties all of us together, music of love and peace. Amen.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Sweet Sounds

Evan is growing into such a sweet little boy. He loves to say "Daddy home!" when Kevin drives up the driveway. When I get home from working out at the Y, with summer having the door open, I hear "Hi Mama!" when I walk in. He says "More chicken -please!"!...and my favorite - "Thank you, Mommy!" for just about every little thing.

Yes, my child is the smartest, cutest child on the planet. Of course. ;-)

Amy

Elephant Dreams | Fit Pregnancy

My niece Shelley is expecting her 3rd child very soon. She has been blogging about her experience at Once Upon a Pregnancy on FitPregnancy.com - but I'm too technically challenged to figure out how to add her blog to my "favorite blogs" list. So just go there and read all her entries! And check my list of favorite blogs for her blog "Parentgood" that I *was* able to link to! :-) It's a great blog about keeping parenting "simple" - well,as simple as parenting can be! LOL! Iespecially appreciated this post on 5 ways to remain calm!

Friday, September 05, 2008

HeyGirlMommaGo — Dragonflies, Part II

So I was reading a favorite blog of mine HeyGirlMommaGo, by a local woman I met at a New Mom's Tea put on by our local parents' group. This one, Dragonflies, Part II, just hit me. I haven't had such moments with my 2 year old and one year old yet - they're 2 and 1 ;-) - but just *imagining* them...teary eyes. Enjoy.

Palin Owes Some Good People an Apology (by Jim Wallis)



Jim Wallis wrote a wonderful piece on Sarah Palin's attack on Obama's experience as a community organizer. I was very put off by her condescending and sarcastic attack of Obama's early career, and the implication that somehow that was not important leadership work, work that more than qualifies Obama to lead the country. More than that, I didn't like how she was belittled that work in general. How dare she?! This is a great article about just how important that work was, and how important the work community organizers are doing now really is to our country. I hope I teach my children this, and that if they ever become community organizers, nobody belittles them. They'll have me to answer to!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

Inspiration

Skirt magazine sends out a daily email that often delights, inspires and/or educates me. This one was so perfectly timed, I just had to share.

Amy

Monday, September 01, 2008

Evan knows Mama loves her coffee!

So Evan notices and names many many things these days. He long ago learned to pick up his play phone and say "Tuccis (Bertucci's), table please". Now when we leave Bertucci's, he points to and names the "Tucci sign", as well as the "big giant clock" that hangs outside Bertuccis, and "Mommy coffee store" - the coffee shop next to Bertuccis where I've gotten coffee ONCE! LOL! He talks about it every time we come and go from Bertuccis now. My son looks after Mama's coffee habit well. :-)