My brain is scattered of late, which has a lot to do with how little I’m blogging. This topic has been on my mind for weeks, but I just can’t pare it down, so I keep starting and stopping. Tonight, I’ll give myself a few minutes to get what I can down, because I really want to hear what you all think about choosing books for the young child. I’ll do my best to keep from following too many bunny trails here.
My oldest, Annabelle, is now three. She has what Maria Montessori referred to as an “absorbent mind,” and my goodness does that girl absorb things! In my early years of teaching, before Annabelle came around, I saw the tremendous capacity that children have for absorbing and recalling information and experiences, but it wasn’t until I spent all of my time with the same child that I truly got a sense of what this means. Annabelle absolutely takes everything in, not just experiencing and processing it, but actually making it a part of herself. I see the way experiences shape her, the way they come out in her play, in her interactions with others, in her overall behavior. I’ve really been shocked by the extent of this reality. Continue reading
If you’ve been around this space awhile, you already know this, but: Since April, two year old Annabelle has slept in six different beds, lived in two houses and slept in two different hotels in between. She has adapted to a few different schedules for both her daddy and for me, only to have them change soon after. Oh yeah, and she had a baby brother. All of this seems to have made it hard to settle into a comfortable groove during mornings at home, and many days it was a huge struggle just to get out of the house. Some days I simply gave up because I didn’t want to struggle anymore, and we stayed home when I really could have used a bit of time out of the house. See, Annabelle would start playing, reading, drawing, or doing something else important to her and would suddenly decide that she had no interest in doing any of the things one must do before going out, like getting dressed. She seemed to feel so much better, and rest so much better, when she engaged in something in the outside world each day, but it was not easy to get her in to the outside world before rest time came. Continue reading
Over at the Natural Parents Network, I’ve written about some of the things that helped me get through the early months of Annabelle’s life with her daddy away.
Here’s an excerpt:
We had recently moved to the island of Guam, where I had not yet developed any close friendships, and where we were not only geographically removed from our extended family in a big way, but we were also in such a drastically different time zone that I couldn’t even reasonablycall someone I loved every time I needed a listening ear. It all sounds awfully dramatic and awfully difficult when I write it out like that, and solo parenting certainly isn’t easy (let’s face it, parenting period isn’t easy), but it was manageable, and over two years later, is still a time I remember fondly for the most part. Looking back, there are a handful of things that I feel contributed to my ability to maintain my sanity during that very busy time. I’m sure there’s more I could have done, and I’m sure there are things I could have done differently, but all in all, I’m happy with the choices I made.
Read the whole post, and share your own new mama survival tips here.