Try It Tuesday

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Today I was going to try some kind of tasty treat but I’ve been stress-eating like crazy because of this ridiculous election season so I figured I’d try something that would actually make me feel better instead of filling me with self-loathing and calories. That’s why I thought I’d try this out today:

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According to the Headspace website, their mission is:

At Headspace we believe there is nothing more important than looking after the health of the mind, so we’ve made it our mission to get people everywhere to look after this precious resource by sitting to meditate for a few minutes a day, everyday. 

 

I’m not one for meditating–a part of me kind of associates it with New Age hokum–but I thought I would try it out. I mean, I’m a momma of two kids–I could use some peace and a way to reverse “Mommy Brain“.

The app it pretty user friendly and instructs you to find a quiet place that you can guarantee you’ll be left alone for about 10-20 minutes. I chose to do my 10-minute guided meditation during nap time.

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Honestly…I couldn’t really get into it. I found the narrator’s voice a tad annoying and I couldn’t really focus. I found it much easier to just listen to classical music and focus on my breathing for about 5-10 minutes. THAT actually helped!

I’m not discounting Headspace; it may be really helpful for others. It just wasn’t my cup of tea. I did think it was interesting, though, that they had meditations for kids!

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For parents looking for non-medicinal/traditional ways to help their kiddos be able to focus, I think it might be a useful tool!

Have you ever tried Headspace (or a similar app)? What did you think? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Yesterday I had a parenting conundrum. No, it wasn’t whether or not to let Huff the Tot eat Goldfish crackers she found in her car seat, it was something much more serious. Here’s the story:

Yesterday when I went to pick her up from her Sunday school class, her face was red and I could tell she had been crying while she was sitting in the teacher’s lap. “What happened?” I asked as she ran toward me. The teacher then filled me in.

She told me that there was a young boy new to the class that Sunday. He was autistic and was shouting. Huff the Tot and some of the other kids got scared and a chain of crying took place before the boys’ father came to pick him up.

(Before I go on, please know that I am not saying, “Oh my gosh; why didn’t they do something to shut that kid up? He was obviously distressing the kids!” That’s not what this post is about. So calm down and read the whole post. Anyway, moving on…)

Huff the Tot is not one for loud noises (though, ironically, the kid basically has no “inside voice”) and gets freaked out pretty fast when someone’s volume goes up. I nodded encouragingly to the teacher, told her thank you, and Hermione and I left. As we were walking to find the rest of the family she said, “He was being loud, Mommy. I didn’t like it.”

I found myself at a loss. How was I supposed to respond to that? How do I describe to my three year old about autism and children with special needs? Luckily my sister, who teaches fourth grade, was there and said, “He wasn’t trying to hurt your ears. Sometimes kids can’t control their voices and they get loud.” Huff the Tot seemed to accept that answer and moved on. I, however, couldn’t.

I knew this wouldn’t be the last time that I had to explain difficult things to my daughter (or son, when Huff the Babe gets older). I feel like I could handle a conversation about physical handicaps with the kids. After all, the episode of Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood this morning was about Prince Wednesday’s cousin, Chrissie, who wears braces on her legs.

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They ask Chrissie questions about her legs and she answers them in simple, easy-to-grasp kid language. They even sing a little song: “In some ways we are different, but in so many ways we are the same!” I feel like its much easier to explain physical differences; differences kid’s can see. Its much more difficult to explain abstract concepts to toddlers.

And this is where I get to my point: How do I explain autism and the like to a toddler? When we’re around children with special needs, I don’t want to pretend like they are not there. They are created in the image of God just like my kids and I want my children to know this. I don’t want them to look over people. I want them to understand people, be kind to people.

So I’m calling on you, Mommas–especially Momma’s of children with special needs: how would handle this (or like the situation to be handled)?

 

 

 

Helpful comments only. If this is where you want to get into a debate and be disparaging, rude, or condescending, you may go to another blog.

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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Though it is very historic that, this year, a woman has become her party’s candidate for the presidential election, another woman holds the title of first woman to run for President of the United States. That distinction goes to today’s leading lady: Victoria Claflin Woodhull.

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Victoria was born in 1838 in rural Ohio, the seventh of ten children, to Roxanna and Reuben Claflin. Her mother was illiterate and her father was an abusive con man, making his money as a snake oil salesman. When she was just a few days past her fifteenth birthday, Victoria married her first husband with whom she had two children. She later divorced him, finding out he was an alcoholic and womanizer. Back in the 1850’s, divorce was scandalous and was much stigmatized for the woman. This catapulted Victoria into becoming a voice for women who were forced to stay in loveless and often abusive marriages.

Victoria began working to support herself and her children as well as fighting for women’s rights. She and her sister, Tennessee, became the first female stock brokers in 1870, and opened their own firm. Victoria ended up making a fortune on stocks and helped Cornelius Vanderbilt make his millions.

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Victoria decided to amp up her fight to gain the right to vote for herself and all American women. She testified before a House Judiciary Committee and argued that the 14th and 15th Amendments already gave women the power to vote, they just needed to act on it. She pointed out that the Amendments protected the right to vote for all citizens. After this, Victoria was sought out by Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and Isabella Beecher Hooker to become a part of their movement that was gaining momentum.

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That same year, Victoria and her sister founded a newspaper—Woodhull and Claflin’s Weekly. Most of the articles focused on women’s issues of the day such as suffrage and women’s education. However, it has become best known for exposing the hypocrisy of Pastor Henry Ward Beecher who preached fidelity in his masses, but was secretly having an affair with a church member. The article prompted criminal charges to be filed against Beecher and a trial (which ended in a hung jury) soon followed.

Victoria was nominated for president in 1872 by the Equal Rights Party, with Frederick Douglass named as her running mate. (Douglass never commented on the nomination.) Victoria and her sister were arrested the day before the election for “publishing an obscene newspaper” because of the story on Beecher’s affair. They were held for a month in jail, thus preventing Victoria from attempting to vote in the election. Unshaken, Victoria continued her fight for women’s equality and ran for president years later in 1884 and 1892.

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Victoria fought for women and for their voices to be heard until her dying day. She truly has earned the title of Kick-A Woman in History!