Posted by: Angela | July 10, 2007

Tattle Tale

The challenge of being a four and half year old girl with no siblings…

Who do you tattle tale on?

Why, the cat!

Seems so obvious now.

Posted by: Angela | July 3, 2007

Turns out I am not organic

I really admire small farmers, especially small organic farmers. You know the very passionate people who work very hard and bring great food to the farmer’s markets around the country. Making a living from large scale gardens (or very small farms depending on your view) is hard work and very labor intensive.

Having been raised by a conventional farmer in a conventional farming community and rather organic minded mother, I have very blurry view of food production. The way I see it farming is excessively hard work for very little gain and therefore something I don’t really want to do for a lifetime. [I do realize this view does bring to mind the question, “And your husband has worked for a church, and still is a youth minister?” Yes I appreciate the irony.]

So in my little garden, I was going to not use any “chemicals”. Really because I know the pesticides tend to be very overused in residential applications. That was until the thistles started coming back. Thistles are “pokey” plants which means they stick/sting you. Some types including the type in my garden are considered “noxious” weeds in some places.  They also unfortunately grow from rhizomes (or related plant structure) and aren’t eradicated by simply pulling them up. Well pulling them works if you keep at it but I am impatient, so I went with the Monsanto solution. I used Roundup on the little buggers, which makes my garden non-organic.  Only on the thistles, not the weeds I can pull up and eliminate because again like I said, pesticides are frequently overused in residential settings and it is better management practice to simply pull the darn grass up. So I guess what I am doing is better termed Integrated Pest Management.

Posted by: Angela | July 2, 2007

Getting down to the nitty gritty of parenting

Today we had one of those incidents that you know have to be disciplined and you know it needs to be memorable. I am finding that discipline is more challenging as the darling little girl grows up. Time outs I can do, I can suspend the story privelege, but as she grows the issues are getting bigger. Maybe I (and Daddy too) read too much into them, but years of working with teens and a current job working with “troubled” girls will lead to that.

As I thought about what had happened today on the way home from work (said incident occurred at work), I realized it embodied two of the most important things I can teach my child.

  • Telling the truth especially when you think the truth will get you in trouble
  • Accepting the blame for your share of the harm that was done even when others were also participating and may have been the instigators

I realized that these are the very reasons that my heart seems to sink whenever I am confronted with this difficult discipline times. These are huge concepts that many adults don’t seem to grasp and that are hard to live out all the time.

Equally interesting to me, telling the truth and accepting blame are those things that separate people into those who contribute to society and their world and those who take from and ultimately cost society something. Lying and blaming others are common behaviors of people who cost society money, security, and time. An addict is a classic example. If you don’t have the privilege of knowing an addict (not talking about people in recovery here), trust me when I say they lie with nearly every breath and it is always someone else’s fault.

Parenting would be so much easier if children came with the innate knowledge of truth telling instead of the instinctive desire to get out of potential trouble by saying “I didn’t do it” or “I forgot” or whatever.

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