Welcome to another Mommy Brain Monday! Check out what has been rattling around my mommy brain this week:
OK Lenore, I posted it! If you aren't familiar with Lenore Skenazy's Free-Range Kids movement and website, you should check it out. You can begin by reading this piece on how major crime is down to its lowest rate in 4o years. While I'm definitely not a total free-ranger, I do acknowledge that a lot of fear-based parental helicoptering is not grounded in facts, just fear. So loosen up already!
Using An Apple to Ripen Fruit. Maybe it's me, or maybe it's where I shop, but it seems like the fruit I find is either hard-as-a-rock unripe, or on the verge of rotting. I read this little lifehacker.com tip on throwing an apple into a paper bag with a few pieces of unripe fruit to speed the ripening process, threw an apple in with a few hard peaches, and what do you know? It worked like a charm.
Attention Gwyneth-haters: This recipe rocked! I never realized that so many people found Gwyneth Paltrow unbearably annoying. But when she published her cookbook about a month ago, the Gwyneth hate exploded online, with many insisting that she should stick to acting and leave cooking to professionals. Um, what? I mean, I hate to say it, but neither acting nor cooking is BRAIN SURGERY for Christ's sake. She published a freaking cookbook, not off-the-cuff, step-by-step instructions to building a nuclear submarine or anything. Geez. Anyway, I am a fan of the recipe below for two reasons: she seriously reduces the cooking time of roasting a chicken by cutting the back out and removing the thigh bones, AND, the way she "fuzzes" her potatoes before roasting is AWESOME. Love it. You go, Gwyneth!
Road Trip Apps: This little article from DailyCandy Kids lists a few awesome-sounding apps for family road trips. Alas, they are all for iPhone (I have an Android phone) but wanted to share with all you iPhone mommies out there. They sound super-cute, especially Road-Trip-Bingo.
Kindergarten Ready, Or Not? This "Motherlode" piece is a couple weeks old, but I just stumbled across it today, and really enjoyed reading the comments after the article. The issue is kindergarten redshirting, and how young is too young for kindergarten. The Comments section really fleshed out the issue. Elle will be starting kindergarten in the fall, and will be a "young" kindergartener by Miami standards (she will turn 5 in July.) And yeah, I have wondered if she will be at some disadvantage as one of the youngest, knowing that other parents choose to keep their kids out of kindergarten for an extra year (starting them at 6+ years old rather than 5+ years old), so she will share a classroom with some kids more than a year older than her. Holding a child back because you feel he or she is "not ready" is one thing, but I know of other parents that hold their children back so they can be the biggest/best/smartest in the class, and I worry that this could really throw off the balance of a class. In this case, *dislike*.
10 Ways to Play in June. I love, love, LOVE this feature of the lets-explore.net website. Each month, in addition to the other cool downloads, the blog features sweet, simple, fun, yet meaningful things you can do with your kids throughout each month. We're not talking detailed craft projects, we're talking: "Sketch or paint the sunset." "Get out all your spices and smell them. Which spice scent is your favorite?" See? So simple I could cry. Check out 10 Ways to Play in June, and the rest of this lovely website, while you're at it.
Ugh. Education News so Frustrating, I Can't Even Come Up with a Clever Title. So basically, US education reform isn't working. Other countries' reforms are working, but hey, we're going to ignore that and keep doing it our way. Sigh. Just read it: U.S. Reforms Out of Sync with High-Performing Nations
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