Category: Uncategorized

Friday miscellany: On my mind this week

Sassy the Elf reappeared this morning. She (he?) is nestled in the Christmas tree. The little guy was up first, so I showed him where she/he was, so he immediately told his sister when she came downstairs. Then she proceeded to tell her big brothers where Sassy was, which infuriated them. There were such discussions at the breakfast table as "I'm going to wake u… read more »

Books read in November

It's that time again! I read more this month than I thought I would. It was not a month of War and Peace type books, but some intriguing stuff, nonetheless. We Need to Talk, by Celeste Headlee I met Headlee in the speaker's lounge at the Texas Conference for Women. We were introduced by Jess Lahey (author of The Gift of Failure) who was also there. While Celeste a… read more »

2017 Literary Advent Calendar picks

I took a few minutes yesterday to organize the Christmas stories. Here's what we'll be opening in December, one a night. I didn't wind up purchasing any new books this year, because three years into our literary Advent calendar tradition, I've found we have enough holiday stories in the house to chuck the real duds. I also realized last year that we had run out o… read more »

Podcast discussion thread: Gender stereotypes (especially in holiday toys)

My inbox teemed this weekend with Black Friday and Cyber Monday holiday sales alerts. Since I have many small children, many of the emails advertised toys. If you have small children, you know that children's toys are among the most gendered products out there. Given that play is how children learn about the world, what's a parent who wishes to challenge trad… read more »

5 reasons I won’t be simplifying Christmas this year

(Laura’s note: A version of this post ran in November, 2012, and then another version in November, 2015. It remains an audience favorite.) It's that time of year again — time for a round of blog posts, ebooks and magazine articles on how to simplify Christmas. "Simple" is a powerful word in our culture. There's a reason Real Simple magazine is called that,… read more »