Category: Conscious Parenting

The Santa Conversation

My daughter is two years old and I’ve been fretting about the Santa conversation. I’m clear that I don’t want to lie to her. I remember feeling betrayed and angry when I realized that Santa is mythical. And I’d like to save my daughter from that same break of trust. On the other hand, I […]

Fostering Gratitude

My daughter’s favorite phrase lately seems to be, “I want I want I want…” and then she fills in the blank with whatever she happens to want in that particular moment. We’ve been working on asking nicely, which she does beautifully when prompted. And, with Thanksgiving approaching I’ve been thinking about the relationship between desire […]

Seven Strategies to Transform Challenging Moments

Sometimes I wish my child wasn’t such a perfect reflection of my emotional state. I was grumpy yesterday and how did my daughter respond? By not listening, not helping, and saying no to everything. I knew that she was just responding to my own “no” energy, yet I somehow couldn’t pull myself out of my […]

How Setting Parenting Goals Can Completely Change Your Life

Photo by Suzette Hibble I’m frustrated with how things are. I know I want a change. I just wish things were different and easier and that I didn’t get a bunch of resistance at every step along the way. I try to talk to my husband about it and we get into a fight. I […]

Forced Apologies Undermine Conflict Resolution Skills

Remember what it was like when you got into a squabble with your siblings or friends and at the end there was the inevitable, “Say you’re sorry” and you half-heartedly responded, “I’m sorry” and then the two of you were supposed to “make up” and play together again as if nothing had happened? I don’t […]

Why My Child’s Sleep Rules My Life and I Wouldn’t Have it Any Other Way

I hear all sorts of things from other parents and from my colleagues about how a child’s sleep schedule doesn’t have to rule your life. I’ve heard moms proclaim, “I’m not about to let my infant dictate my schedule, she can sleep just as well in the stroller anyway.” Well, I respectfully disagree. Children need […]

So what exactly AM I supposed to say to my child now?

Photo by Suzette Hibble www.thebayareaphotographer.com Some of the recent research on the psychology of children is showing that saying things like, “You’re so smart! Good job! And He’s so cute!” can actually harm a child’s emerging sense of self-confidence. Apparently when we tell a child she’s smart because she got an A on her report […]

Sometimes what kids need most from us is nothing at all

I think one of the most challenging lessons I’ve learned as a teacher and as a parent is when NOT to intervene. It is actually excruciating for me to hear a child struggling and not rush over to help. But sometimes doing nothing is actually the best thing we can do for a child. When […]

Why Family Rituals Create Confident Kids

Have you ever noticed how young children like to do things the same way day after day? Let’s say you just happened to make a joke at the beginning of lunch one day, so they remind you of the joke every day for the next two weeks. Sound familiar? Or, you cut the crust off […]

Encouraging an Expanding Vocabulary

(This post is dedicated to my dad, Bernard B. Birger for always using big words with me and describing complex concepts in great detail, even when I was only three years old.) Wow, Julia is absorbing language like a sponge on steroids. The other day I casually mentioned to my husband that a friend of […]