Thursday, January 31, 2013

Book Discussion: Chapter 2 of Unconditional Parenting

Here I am, thinking about Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason by Alfie Kohn again. In this post, I have some quotes from the second chapter, "Giving and Withholding Love.

I think Mr. Kohn tackles time-outs right at the beginning of the chapter. In recent years, the time-out has come to be the accepted form of punishment, replacing spanking or other forms of physical punishment. According to Mr. Kohn, though, we've merely switched to a more insidious form of control.

According to him, "time-out" is an abbreviation for "time out from positive reinforcement" coined initially to describe an experimental technique used to change behavior in animals (experimental animals like rats). As he says, "We are talking about a technique, then, that began as a way of controlling animal behavior."
Even if its history and theoretical basis don't trouble you, look again at the original label time-out from positive reinforcement...what, exactly, is the positive reinforcement that's being suspended when a child is given a time-out?...When you send a child away, what's really being switched off or withdrawn is your presence, your attention, your love.
In my experience, time-outs have not been very effective in changing behavior so it's not difficult for me to decide to avoid them. I do think it's interesting to think about time-outs as love withdrawal. In a way, it is saying to a child, "I don't want to be around you right now. Go away until I say you can come back." (I can't remember if it was in this chapter or another one when Mr. Kohn clarified that it is not love withdrawal if you accompany your child somewhere while he or she cools off or if you allow the child to decide when to leave, where to go, and when to come back. It is also perfectly acceptable to say, "I need to go cool down for a few minutes. I'll be back when I am in control of myself.")

Taking punishments and rewards in general, I am convinced they don't work in education, parenting, or the workplace. (Punished by Rewards: The Trouble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A's, Praise, and Other Bribes by the same author covers this topic extensively.)
What I want to emphasize is that extrinsic motivation is likely to erode intrinsic motivation. As extrinsic goes up, intrinsic tends to come down. The more that people are rewarded for doing something, the more likely they are to lose interest in whatever they had to do to get the reward. Of course, there are always qualifications and exceptions to any one-sentence summary of a psychological finding, but that basic proposition has been proven by literally scores of studies with people of different ages, genders, and cultural backgrounds--and with a variety of different tasks and rewards.
Unfortunately, it seems praise such as "Good job!" is just as destructive in this sense as offering a tangible reward. In these cases, the child is working for the reward of a parent's praise or affirmation rather than the intrinsic joy of sounding out a word or finding the answer to a math problem.

If I accept this premise, what am I supposed to say to my daughter when she successfully sounds out a difficult word? In trying to put this belief into practice, I find myself saying, "That's correct." or "That's right." all the time. It's hard to remember to direct the child to the accomplishment rather than to my reaction to it.

Actually, if we truly accept the tenets of unconditional parenting to its extreme, praise is even worse than you might think:
What's the mirror image of love withdrawal--that is, withholding affection when kids do things we don't like? It would have to be giving them affection when they do things we do like: providing it selectively, contingently, often in the explicit hope of reinforcing that behavior. Praise isn't just different from unconditional love; it's the polar opposite. Its' a way of saying to children: "You have to jump through my hoops in order for me to express support and delight."
I thought this quote was particularly interesting because so many parenting magazines and books recommend exactly this: when you see your child doing something you like (perhaps giving the larger piece of the pear to a sister or brother), you should give them a kiss or hug. Mr. Kohn would argue such a response would undermine the naturally good feeling that results from generous behavior (for example). Children would then think, "I feel good because Mom gave me a kiss, not because I did this good thing." In the future, they would be less likely to engage in positive social behavior unless they thought someone was watching them.

Kansas Dad and I decided long ago not to praise our kids all the time. But according to Mr. Kohn, avoiding most praise is not enough, and might even be worse.
Someone who announces that it's pointless to give kids a pat on the head for every little thing they do will typically add that we ought to be more selective, more discriminating about praising--which means that kids should have to do more to earn our approval. And of course that means that our parenting would become even more conditional that it already is. These critics are probably correct to observe that when kids are praised constantly, it turns into background noise and they barely even hear it anymore. To which we might reply: Good! It's when praise is timed and phrased for maximum impact that we really need to worry. That's when (at least from the child's point of view) the unconditionality of our love is most in doubt.
I think, though, that Mr. Kohn would agree that we can say something like, "It looks like you and your sister are having a great time playing together." or "Look at how happy your sister is since you decided to play a game with her." Children still need someone to tell them how they should behave and pointing out examples of the kind of behavior is appropriate. It seems like the key is to help think about how their behavior makes them and those around them feel, how their relationships are improving or being damaged. We don't want First Son to be nice to his sisters because we told him to be nice to them; we want him to be nice to them because it's the right thing to do, because it develops a relationship of trust and friendship between them, because they are smaller than he is and he has a responsibility to protect those that are less able to protect themselves...and for lots of other reasons. We can share all these reasons with him and point out to him when he is not following through, the kind of constructive criticism that helps people grow and improve. (But it so much easier to say, "Stop!" And it is so very difficult when you've talked and you've talked and their behavior just isn't changing!)

I have been thinking more and more about how God loves us. (Apparently, this statement is debated in the Christian communities, but I think "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only son..." sums it up well enough for me.) I've always thought one of my jobs as a parent is to show my children the love of an earthly parent as a small glimpse of the greatness of the love of the Father for each of them. If that is true, then I should do all I can to not only love my children unconditionally but to show them that love. When I look at the Parable of the Prodigal Son, it seems like I should love them as abundantly - and show that love - even when they seem their most disobedient.
But when he came to himself he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired hands have bread enough and to spare, but here I am dying of hunger! I will get up and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son; treat me like one of your hired hands.”’ So he set off and went to his father. But while he was still far off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion; he ran and put his arms around him and kissed him. Then the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you; I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quickly, bring out a robe—the best one—and put it on him; put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. And get the fatted calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found!’ And they began to celebrate. (Luke 15:17-24 NRSV)
Note that the father runs to his son and embraces him before he son has confessed or asked forgiveness. All he did was come to him. It's hard to tell from the text, but it almost seems as if the father is planning his feast before the son even apologizes.


Previous posts on Unconditional Parenting

Thoughts on the Introduction
Discussion of quotes from chapter 1

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The Catholic Company Review: Holding Jesus

by Alfred McBride

The first part of this book provides daily readings for Advent, focused on Mary's relationship with Jesus in his childhood. The second and third parts focus on Mary's relationship with Jesus during his public ministry and Mary during Christ's Passion, death and resurrection. The latter two parts would be appropriate at any time of the year. I think they might be nice to read during Lent as a complement to the Advent readings, though there would not be enough readings for one each day.

Overall, this is a nice little book. The quote, refection, question, and prayer provided for each day are quite short. The Bible passages recommended would flesh out the daily reading well. Sometimes the reflections didn't flow very well, but perhaps that was just the author's style. I thought most of the questions were quite good as well, especially if the reader was willing to be honest.

I was disappointed in the references. (I know, I'm odd; I almost always check the end notes in a book.) It seemed like the majority of the references are webpages (even for poetry or hymns in the public domain) or McBride's other books (at least once for an encyclical). There was nothing inaccurate with the references; it just seems like they were rushed or something. It made me wonder how much of the ideas in the reflections might also appear in other of McBride's books, none of which I have read.


This review was written as part of the Catholic book reviewer program from The Catholic Company. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Visit The Catholic Company to find more information on Holding Jesus. The Catholic Company is the best resource for gifts for every Sacrament celebration, such as First Communion gifts and Baptism gifts, as well as a great selection of limited-time Year of Faith gifts and resources.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

My Favorite Picture Books: The Legend of the Bluebonnet

Did you see Extra Yarn was named a Caldecott Honor Book yesterday? I don't always agree with their choices, but I do love to see my favorites named because that little sticker helps keep them in print.

The Legend of the Bluebonnet, an old tale of Texas retold and illustrated by Tomie dePaola

We've read this book many times over the years. A young girl's parents have died and she is alone in her Native American tribe. They are suffering in the midst of a great drought. The elders determine a great sacrifice is needed, "a burnt offering of the most valued possession among us."

The other members of the tribe consider the words, convincing themselves the sacrifice desired is not their own most treasured possession. But the little girl has no doubt. She knows her doll, the doll her mother made for her with blue feathers gathered by her father, is her most valued possession. Thinking only of her People and their suffering, she burns her doll and spreads the ashes. In the morning, she is greeted by a miracle and the thanksgiving of her people.

Parents must use their own judgment in deciding if this book is right for their children. Some are perhaps not ready to read of parents who have died (mine are unfazed by this thought). The idea of a burnt offering to Great Spirits might also be problematic (though we usually just talk about how the missionaries had not yet come to tell them of the one true God). In my mind, this legend of one young girl being willing to make such a great sacrifice for the good of her people is a precious one.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

What I Loved about this Morning

Would you believe I completely and totally forgot about posting What I Loved about Last Week until about 11 am this morning? Usually I write a bit each night and finish it up on Friday night. This week, I did none of that. (Kansas Dad and I watched the first half of The Fellowship of the Ring instead last night, a more than worthy excuse, I think.

I do remember going to pick up First Son from Catechesis of the Good Shepherd and watching the older children race from the parish hall to the church for reconciliation after class. What a beautiful sight!

The week just doesn't compare to this morning, though. We woke late (8 am!) and Kansas Dad made his signature Saturday morning breakfast (eggs to order including 3 different omelets, toasted potatoes, and turkey bacon). Then Kansas Dad went out to butcher a deformed chicken which is now bubbling away on the stove for a delicious late lunch of chicken soup. First Daughter and I made granola bars which are cooling on the counter. Most wonderfully of all, I made homemade challah bread which is baking in the oven now and will grace our places as challah french toast tomorrow morning.

Now...what shall we do this afternoon?

Friday, January 25, 2013

Quote: When Helping Hurts

From chapter 5 of When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor . . . and Yourself:
Yes, we got an inventory of people's assets that day, an inventory that we later used to help the residents dream about how to solve some of their problems. But more importantly, we started a process of empowerment by asking a simple question: what gifts do you have? When one is feeling marginalized, such a question can be nothing short of revolutionary.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Advent and Christmas Family Read-Alouds

Hopefully you won't mind a few Advent and Christmas posts even though we're back in Ordinary Time. I didn't get much posted this year and I don't want to neglect it.

This school year, I've been reading aloud during breakfast from a classic book (classic by my definition). During Advent and Christmas, I put our classic book on hold so I could read from a classic Christmas story each day. Here's a list of what we read during Advent 2012 and a few I've put on the list for 2013. (By the way, I think you could easily continue such reading through the Christmas season, but we tend to travel and put almost all school on hold through Epiphany and then start right back to our "normal" studies.)

Books we read in 2012

The Little Juggler retold and illustrated by Barbara Cooney is one of my favorite books. I've written about it before. This is probably more of a picture book, but I read it during our read-aloud time instead of wrapping it for our picture-book-a-day.

The Story of the Other Wise Man by Henry Van Dyke - I wrote about this book just before Christmas.

The Lion in the Box by Marguerite De Angeli is the story of one very special Christmas of one of her close friends. I loved reading how this poor family (but rich in love) worked together to serve each other. It's a sweet story and the children loved listening to it.

Books for 2013

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens - I had planned to read this book (finally!) to the children, but I read from it one day and met with glazed looks from both First Son and First Daughter even though they already know the plot from Jim Weiss's A Christmas Carol and Other Favorites. It was right before Christmas and I knew we'd be leaving soon for my parent's house so I sadly decided to set it aside. We will start with it next year, though, and read through the whole thing because the original is truly wonderful.

Kirsten's Surprise by Janet Shaw is one of the American Girl books. I don't know much about the dolls, but this story is a nice one to read for St. Lucy's feast day on December 13th. I look forward to sharing it, especially with my girls.

The Trees Kneel at Christmas by Maud Hart Lovelace is the story of the two children in a Lebanese family set in Brooklyn in 1950, right in Park Slope, the wonderful neighborhood Kansas Dad and I called home when we lived in New York City. Afify and her brother, Hanna, set out on Christmas Eve to see if the trees kneel just as they do in Lebanon, to honor the Christ child's birth. It's full of wonderful details about life in New York for Lebanese immigrants, a heart-warming tale of faith. Do pre-read it as there are references to Mary and the Mass that seemed explicitly Catholic to me. Also there are quite a few adults who smoke, which isn't something we find often in contemporary children's literature.

The Birds' Christmas Carol by Kate Douglas Wiggin - I read this many years ago and decided against sharing it with the children because the end of the book is a little sad, but I recently received a wonderful old copy of it from another member of PaperBackSwap and think I'll read it with the children next year if we have time. If not, it'll be first on our list for Advent 2014.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

December 2012 Book Reports

It's taken me a while to get this posted, but I didn't want to neglect it. Here's the list of books I read in December 2012 (not counting what I read out loud to the kids).

Saint Tekakwitha: Courageous Faith adapted from a book by Lillian M. Fisher (a review for The Catholic Company) - I read this book in November, but forgot to include it in my November book report.

The Queen of Water by Laura Resau and Maria Virginia Farinango (library copy)

The Mennyms by Sylvia Waugh is the story of life-size rag dolls that are alive. They have been living in a rented home for forty years, since their creator passed away. Crisis arrives, of course, and the family must adjust to accommodate each other. It was a nice little story, though I don't think it would appeal to my nine year old son that much, though he could read it. I'm going to add it to my list for the girls when they get older. As a mother, the idea of a home without any need of preparing meals or cleaning up after them was extremely appealing, but the thought of the children eternally remaining the same ages was a little terrifying. (library copy)

Birdbrain Amos by Michael Delaney is a cute little book about peer pressure, friendship, and courage with a lot of laughs. First Son read it in about half an hour, but I'm going to put it on the list for First Daughter to read when she's ready for short chapter books, probably next year in first grade. (library copy)

First Shift - Legacy (Part 6 of the Silo Series) by Hugh Howey is the sixth book in the Silo series. Set in the "past," it tells of the beginning of the silos. Don't read it first, though! The end is a wonderful connection to the first books but this one will make more sense if you've read the first five. I'm really enjoying these books - so much so that I actually paid for this one to read on the Kindle and then immediately bought the seventh book when I had finished. (purchased Kindle edition)

The Moffats by Eleanor Estes is a very sweet book of the four Moffat children who live with their mother in the yellow house. (Father died many years before.) They are poor but happy. The book shares a series of events rather than an larger plot. Some stories are short and silly, some are serious adventures; all are enjoyable. In my favorite episode, young Joe loses the family's last $5 on his way to buy coal. Mother's reaction epitomizes the kind of mother I'd like to be. (Don't worry; they find the money and all is well!) This book is now high on my list for family read-alouds. If we don't read it this year, it will be early next year. (library copy)

Second Shift - Order (Part 7 of the Silo Series) by Hugh Howey is the seventh book in the Silo series. I bought it right after finishing First Shift (above) and finished it within 24 hours. I would have bought the next book immediately, too, if it had been available. (purchased for the Kindle)

The Midwife's Apprentice by Karen Cushman is the story of a young unwanted girl in medieval England who ends up as a midwife's apprentice just because the midwife finds her useful. She's ill-treated and barely fed, but somehow finds her place in the world. It's definitely a book for young adults, certainly only for those who already know how children come into the world and that not all children are born to a husband and his wife. The language is rough, too. It's engaging, though, and a good depiction of medieval life. I wouldn't read it aloud to my family, but I would allow my girls to read it when they're in high school. (First Son could, too, but I doubt he'd be interested.) (library copy)

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Isiguro is the quiet reminiscence of a women ending her career as a "carer" and about to embark on the end of her life as a "donor." The truth of her creation and childhood are never hidden but not fully revealed. Written in the 1990s, it challenges the value of scientific advancement at the expense of people. It was a little disturbing, but well-written. (library copy)

The Story of the Other Wise Man by Henry van Dyke (library copy)

Unconditional Parenting by Alfie Kohn, though I'll write more about this in January. (library copy)

Heidi by Johanna Spyri (free Kindle version)

One Body, Many Blogs by T.J. Burdock and various other Catholic bloggers talks about the roles bloggers play in Catholic New Media and includes some tips for serious bloggers. Most of them didn't apply much to my own little blog, but I thought it was interesting. (purchased for the Kindle)

Books in Progress (and date started)

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

My Favorite Picture Books: Cookiebot!

by Katie Van Camp and Lincoln Agnew

This is the second book about Harry and Horsie (Harry and Horsie being the first) but I think it far more enjoyable than the first one. Harry's ingenuity and imagination lead him to create a massive robot to procure some cookies for an afternoon snack from the jar his mother has inexplicably placed out of his reach. Things do not go quite as planned but Horsie comes to the rescue. I love how Harry's play involves a variety of toys, none of which are linked to a television show or massive advertising campaigns. (Part of the joy will be lost if "Horsie" toys start appearing in stores.)

The illustrations are reminiscent of science fiction illustrations of the 1950s, colorful in red, blue, and yellow.

Second Son loves this book, so much so that we were continually requesting it from the library. He received a copy for Christmas and I think he was a little confused why we had asked him to unwrap a book that was obviously already his.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Quote: When Helping Hurts

From the Introduction of When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor . . . and Yourself:
North American Christians are simply not doing enough. We are the richest people ever to walk the face of the earth. Period. Yet, most of us live as though there is nothing terribly wrong in the world. We attend our kids' soccer games, pursue our careers, and take beach vacations while 40 percent of the world's inhabitants struggle just to eat every day. And in our own backyards, the homeless, those residing in ghettos, and a wave of immigrants live in a world outside the economic and social mainstream of North America. We do not necessarily need to feel guilty about our wealth. But we do need to get up every morning with a deep sense that something is terribly wrong with the world and yearn and strive to do something about it. There is simply not enough yearning and striving going on.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

What I Loved About Last Week (56th Ed.)

I haven't posted about what I loved about last week since before Christmas and this post is going to be a quick one. We've had a hectic week with one dentist appointment, two orthodontist appointments, two monthly meetings that fell in the same week, and Mama working a 15 hour week (which is about twice what I normally work in a two week period). Add to that the return to lessons and all our usual weekly activities and First Daughter coming down with a bad cold on Friday.

I'm exhausted!

Still, here are a few high points from the week:

1. First Son started reading The Invention of Hugo Cabret for his independent reading time and told me he thought it was great. (That didn't convince him to read any extra chapters, though.)

2. We read The Dream Jar and talked about saving for a dream. I opened a savings account for First Son at our online bank and transferred what he'd saved so far in his peanut butter jar - over $50! He says he's saving for a computer. First Daughter wanted to start saving, too, so I increased her allowance by a quarter that she'll put in her kitty bank each week. She says she's saving for an ipad. At their savings rates, it'll be about 10 years for First Son and 30 years for First Daughter, but you have to start somewhere. It was sweet to hear them talk about their big dreams.

3. I didn't have any cavities.

4. We had our monthly girls' night. The girls made sand paintings and loved it.

5. We've had some lovely weather the past few days. The kids played outside at our parish playground on Wednesday and Thursday. On Friday, I sent First Son and Second Daughter outside while the other two napped. They went exploring and seemed to have a great time together as I watched through the windows.

6. I emptied a small bookcase so I can push our desk chair against the wall and walk through our bedroom without moving it to one side or the other every time. I also shredded enough papers from our filing cabinet to put in new folders for 2013. I don't file much anymore, but had let the papers pile up for a couple of months because there wasn't room for them in the cabinet. There's still too much stuff against the wall, but all the papers have been filed and the artwork stored in the kids' art boxes. At least until we paint again next week...

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Book Discussion: Chapter 1 of Unconditional Parenting

Back in December, I wrote about the introduction of Unconditional Parenting and shared a few of my thoughts as I finished the book.

In the first chapter of Unconditional Parenting, Alfie Kohn talks about conditional parenting, his term for the type of parenting that focuses on the behavior of children.
This book looks at one such distinction--namely, between loving kids for what they do and loving them for who they are. The first sort of love is conditional, which means children must earn it by acting in ways we deem appropriate, or by performing up to our standards. The second sort of love is unconditional: It doesn't hinge on how they act, whether they're successful or well behaved or anything else.
Though we might argue with the name he's given it, the description he provides of what this kind of parenting looks like is pretty much the type of parenting I see all around me and the type I've always thought I should employ. There's a spectrum, of course, but this "conditional parenting" is what seems familiar and sensible. If a child does not obey, I, the parent, should use force or some other tactic to ensure obedience in the future (time-outs, loss of privileges, making the child return and redo a chore or task, additional chores, whatever it might be).

What Mr. Kohn argues is that, from the child's point of view, we as parents are only happy with them if they behave in a particular way - generally by doing whatever we say whenever we say regardless of how the child feels or what the child thinks is right. He spends the rest of the first half of the book expanding on what conditional parenting is and why it's detrimental to a child's development into the person we probably want them to be and to the relationship between a parent and child.

Most parents will say they do love their children unconditionally but does a parent's behavior show that? When my children are disobedient, do I act like I love them anyway?
How we feel about our kids isn't as important as how they experience those feelings and how they regard the way we treat them. Educators remind us that what counts in a classroom is not what the teacher teaches; it's what the learner learns. And so it is in families. What matters is the message our kids receive, not the one we think we're sending.
Acting like I love my children when I am rushing, frustrated, or angry is extremely difficult. Even months after reading this book and considering it as I am reacting to them, I find myself struggling to respond with love when they are misbehaving. I find it particularly difficult with the two year old because two year olds are irrational beings, very loud destructive irrational beings.

Do I spend as much time thinking about why my children are doing something as I do thinking about how I can get them to stop doing it? According to Mr. Kohn, knowing why a child is behaving a particular way may change how we react to that behavior.
Unconditional parenting assumes that behaviors are just the outward expression of feelings and thoughts, needs and intentions. In a nutshell, it's the child who engages in a behavior, not just the behavior itself, that matters...They act this way rather than that way for many different reasons, some of which may be hard to tease apart. But we can't just ignore those reasons and respond only to the effects (that is, the behaviors). Indeed, each of those reasons probably calls for a completely different course of action.
Notice this doesn't mean that all behaviors are permissible, or even that most behaviors are permissible. Mr. Kohn thinks the first step when a parent sees inappropriate behavior should be to think about why this is happening. (Of course, action should come immediately when there's danger involved.) With my little ones, the first example that comes to mind is thinking about how tired or hungry they might be when they start acting out. Remember that two year old I mentioned earlier? It is tremendously hard for a two year old to resist his impulses and is probably impossible if he is hungry or if it's time for a nap. If I could just remember that...

Some people would respond that children need to learn about the consequences of their actions. Punishments for misbehavior, then, are merely the first step in learning about bad things that will happen if they don't follow the rules when they're grown up. Mr. Kohn asks, though, if we need to teach our kids about consequences from a very early age.
When our kids grow up, there will be plenty of occasions for them to take their places as economic actors, as consumers and workers, where self-interest rules and the terms of each exchange can be precisely calculated. But unconditional parenting insists that the family ought to be a haven, a refuge, from such transactions. In particular, love from one's parents does not have to be paid for in any sense. It is purely and simply a gift. It is something to which all children are entitled.
We can't shield our children from all consequences, but perhaps we should shield young children as much as we can. As our children grow, Mr. Kohn would argue it's better to work with our children as they deal with consequences of their actions rather than simply subjecting them to an arbitrary (or a "natural") consequence.

I think this would probably fall along a spectrum. We would offer more assistance and buffers for a four year old than a sixteen year old, but even the sixteen year old would receive help rather than being left on his or her own to deal with "consequences." This makes sense to me. After all, if I want my sixteen year old daughter to come to me if (heaven forbid) she should find herself pregnant, than how should I respond if she oversleeps and misses the bus? If I refuse a ride in the latter situation, why should she trust me to respond with love and forgiveness in the first?

I'm just thinking my way through these chapters. I'm still not really sure where I'm going to find myself as a parent. Thoughts are welcome, especially if you've read the book.

Previous posts on Unconditional Parenting:
Thoughts on the Introduction

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

It's Still Christmas, Isn't It?

I took a blogging break over the holidays, which I usually do, and it's been so nice (and hectic), I haven't gotten back into the habit of blogging. I was planning on writing about a picture book for today's post, but it's long past my bedtime and I've got exactly nothing. So apparently we're going to pretend it's still Christmas (though even us Catholics have moved back into ordinary time). I should certainly have a favorite picture book to share next week.

I hope all my readers (all 15 of you) had a wonderful Christmas and wish you many blessings in the New Year!