Glitter: Where Title IX falls painfully short

I should be writing today, but instead I’m doing the task no parent should be asked to do.

Parent Your Business

IMG_0623 - Version 2Title IX was newish when I hit junior high and decided I didn’t want to take home economics. This was back in the day when all girls took home ec, and all boys took shop. Nothing wrong with home economics, I just, personally, thought it sounded like a snore. The boys got to mold plastics and use power tools. The girls learned how to make white sauce. I could not see how white sauce fit into my future.

My parents, in a much-appreciated burst of advocacy, petitioned the school board to let girls take shop, and ultimately prevailed. Although the board’s ruling came too late to save me from Mrs. W’s high-fat cuisine, it did clear the way for kids like my younger brother to learn how to sew an apron and do his nails (I kid you not. He is still, to this day, extremely well groomed.)

Fast forward several…

View original post 326 more words

Advertisements

I love a parade

Celebrate independence today, however you choose. Happy 4th of July!

Parent Your Business

IMG_0696It is my privilege to attend an annual 4th of July parade that defines what small town celebrations are all about. Each year, we anticipate representatives from all modes of transportation – tractor, truck, car, horse. We cheer loudly for the bands and the veterans. We vie for the free water and hotdogs, and the kids risk life and limb to retrieve candy from the street.

I love this parade. Its main asset is that it changes little from year to year, and let me tell you, there is much comfort in predictability.

Here are some of this year’s highlights:

The mammoth is looking a little warm. He probably wasn’t meant for this weather.

IMG_0673 There is a lot of liberty going on here.

IMG_0694

All the emergency vehicles are in the parade, so don’t light the barbecue until it’s over.

IMG_0675

Not sure which I like best – the mariachi band or the polka band (I…

View original post 84 more words

I need a new sweatshirt

Even bloggers take time off…this week I’m reblogging posts from 2014. (For the record, I am still wearing this sweatshirt.)

Parent Your Business

IMG_0540A few months ago, I wrote a post about the beloved black sweater that for well over a decade has answered for me the question, “What should I wear?” As ratty as it is, I have since realized I have a much more disreputable item of clothing in my wardrobe.

As I stood at the ballpark last night chatting with other baseball parents, it suddenly dawned on me that I was the worst-dressed person at the park. While others sported carefully-coordinated casual wear or the clothes they’d worn to work, I was clad in the aging Hanes sweatshirt I bought years ago with no thought whatsoever.

This is the sweatshirt I grabbed off the rack at a discount store – along with four others in varying sizes – because my family mistakenly believed it could not be cold in central South Dakota in August. (Wrong.) It is large and gray. It is…

View original post 159 more words

What’s the secret password?

Even bloggers take time off…I’m reblogging some posts from 2014 this week. Hope you’re enjoying your holidays!

Parent Your Business

Remember when this phrase meant something exciting? When it represented mystery, or access to some exclusive environment? Now it just gets you access to stuff you already have. If you’re lucky.

No entryI’ve just spent way too much time trying to access a long-forgotten password so I can renew my boys’ sports association memberships – to no avail. It now looks like I will have to make *audible gasp* an actual phone call to retrieve them.

Who uses the phone anymore? Well, I’ll tell you – only those of us desperate, feeble people who can’t remember/find/access our %*#! passwords.

I come from a bygone era where we told – explicitly – not to write down our passwords. I suppose the thought was you had to protect yourself from your co-worker (yeah, that guy in the next cube whose password was “password”) so he would not log on while you were at…

View original post 270 more words

The worst gift I almost got

Even bloggers take time off…I’m reblogging some posts from 2014 this week. Hope you’re enjoying your holidays!

Parent Your Business

Lest readers of my last post think the hideous green vest is the worst gift ever, let me tell you about the one that got away.

I was three months pregnant and sick as (ironically) a dog when the call came.

“My husband is out of town,” I told the earnest young woman on the other end of the phone. “Is there something I can help you with?”

“I’m returning his call. He inquired about purchasing our retired sled dog team,” she said.

Retired sled-dog team? Wah?

IMG_0159Turns out my husband had hatched a plan to buy this for me for my birthday – eight retired dogs and a sled. It is true that I had often expressed an interest in riding on a sled pulled by sled dogs. That did not, however, equate to a desire to own one.

I’d had a rough pregnancy. I hadn’t eaten anything but…

View original post 205 more words

Sorry we woke you

I’m not blogging here this week – other things on my mind – but please visit me over at BlogHer and help me empower teens to take action if they have a friend in trouble.

Parent Your Business

IMG_0349Friends and readers, I’ve written something a little different today over on BlogHer, a personal story about teen depression and suicide. Please visit if you are so inclined. It’s an important message, and we need to spread the word.

View original post

I need a new sweatshirt

IMG_0540A few months ago, I wrote a post about the beloved black sweater that for well over a decade has answered for me the question, “What should I wear?” As ratty as it is, I have since realized I have a much more disreputable item of clothing in my wardrobe.

As I stood at the ballpark last night chatting with other baseball parents, it suddenly dawned on me that I was the worst-dressed person at the park. While others sported carefully-coordinated casual wear or the clothes they’d worn to work, I was clad in the aging Hanes sweatshirt I bought years ago with no thought whatsoever.

This is the sweatshirt I grabbed off the rack at a discount store – along with four others in varying sizes – because my family mistakenly believed it could not be cold in central South Dakota in August. (Wrong.) It is large and gray. It is worn. It is missing the pull for the zipper. And I love it.

It is the item I always grab when I think it will be a little chilly. The neighbor who I see at the bus stop every day probably thinks it’s the only item of outerwear I own. The members of my yoga class probably roll their eyes when I walk in. And the parents at the ballpark? They are probably wondering whether a) I have no taste; b) I have no pride; or c) I have no disposable income. (Note: On any given day, any or all of these could be true.)

Time for a wardrobe intervention. I need to get some self-respect. I need a better-looking sweatshirt.

(But I’ll still wear this one when no one is looking.)

OK, I heard from plenty of people with ratty black sweaters when I published that post – who else has the aging gray sweatshirt? Tell me I’m not the only one!

Still on the move

imageWell, I’ve wrapped up my participation in the May Fitness Challenge, and I’ve learned a few things. I liked the premise of this challenge, working twenty minutes of activity into each day, and the idea that it didn’t have to be formal exercise – it just needed to be movement. I definitely gained a new appreciation of how often I’m in motion.

When we started the challenge, I set two goals: 1) to get back on my exercise schedule – yoga, strength training and walking/running on the treadmill; and 2) to work some yoga into the days I’m not in a class. I met the first goal but not the second. I’m still struggling to establish a home yoga practice, and I probably always will. Guess I’ll have to stick to sneaking a little yoga into my day.

But I did become more aware of the physical activities that are a routine part of my day like housework, yard work, and running around with my kids. I learned to acknowledge that after several hours of strenuous yard work I won’t feel like jumping on the treadmill, and I shouldn’t feel guilty about that. And that vacuuming my house, which is no small chore, gets me moving, stretching, bending, reaching – hey, it may be mundane, but it is physical! And there are worse things than feeling virtuous after vacuuming.

All in all, I think I’ve gained a more holistic view of the movement in my days. I’m doing OK, and I feel good.

Thanks, Jen and Samantha, for the opportunity. Next up for me – the  Blogging University daily Writing 101 challenge. Exercise the body, exercise the mind.

This post is part of the May Fitness Challenge sponsored by:

Jen at JVKom Chronicles

Samantha at 24to30

Exercise by the yard

imageI classify our year into two seasons: Winter and yard work. The nagging knowledge that the yard is untidy sends everyone around here into a frenzy of activity as soon as we have a few nice days. It is also why I breathe a sigh of relief when we finally get that first frost.

Our lovely, wooded lot is a beastly amount of work. There is always weeding, pruning, planting, digging, or raking to do. And this last week, that’s where I focused my daily activity.

I devoted Sunday, Monday, Friday and Saturday to yard or outdoor work. Tuesday I went to yoga and Thursday to strength training. Snuck a little yoga in on Wednesday, too.

Today I woke up as stiff as a board so I took it pretty easy. Yard work uses muscles you pretty much forget you have the rest of the year. Still, this is probably the closest I’ve stuck to the 20×31 challenge and if the weather holds, I’m thinking I’ll be just fine in the home stretch.

This post is part of the May Fitness Challenge sponsored by:

Jen at JVKom Chronicles

Samantha at 24to30