My Tiny Tiger

She is seven.  I am often stunned by her maturity and her ability to take responsibility for what is important to her.  I work with the under-5 crowd all day.  Sometimes she just seems so grown up.  Sassy.  Perceptive.  Funny.  Impossible to contain.

Last Saturday, she was my little, little girl again at a karate tournament. Continue reading


Cheat Day?!

In our house, it is certainly the Den Mother who carries the Primal Torch.  You know, the flame of all things inspirational for our family’s healthier life?  The raison d’être.

Apparently, I am the only one interested in the Primal Torch at all.  After today, I expect the occasional resentful eye roll in my direction as I try to balance said torch above my head.  But I’m betting nobody is going to catch it if it falls.

For the first time in a year, after months of nose-wiping and late nights with coughing kids, I have a head cold.  Head pounding and eyes watering, I smiled weakly and made a list when Den Dad offered to get groceries for the coming week.  He even took all three girls with him.  My hero!

So, I face the work week with everything essential in my fridge.  But there were a few things that came home from the grocery store this morning that were not on the list…

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About my job…

I haven’t left home to “work” full-time since 2005. What part-time work I have done in the last six years has been minimal, and I squeezed in (out?) another two babies along the way. We also did a massive, over-budget, over-timeline home renovation ourselves (with two little ones), navigated three of Den Dad’s career changes, sank to the depths of hopelessness with his back injuries, waded through some postpartum depression and some good old-fashioned depression, morphed with financial pressure caused by all the above, and tried to be partners and parents.

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To Heaven and Hell in a Breadbasket

March seems to be the month when the wall has been thrown up. I hear the dull thud of mother-bodies crashing into it with regularity.  In spite of longer days and melting afternoons, there is a fatigued look in everyone’s eyes – like winter has taken its toll and spring is yet too far away to inspire optimism. Continue reading

Butterfly Cake

Long ago, when I only had one little girl, my friend Naomi and I made a birthday cake.  It was a pink and white choo-choo train with a smiling face, smokestack and different cars topped with flowers and sprinkles.  It took us about 400 man-hours.

The next year we did a pink castle with a moat, bridge and chocolate wrought-iron gates.  It had vines and turrets.  That one took about 4000 man-hours.

I now have three girls who have grand expectations about their hand-crafted super-mom cake.   Continue reading

Raising Empathy

Empathy is at the root of meaningful connection.  One of my greatest wishes for my children is that they have an increasing capacity to feel where another is at.  It bears heavily on their ability to comfort, understand and engage in non-judgmental, meaningful dialogue.

In community, our children can’t help but increase their capacity for empathy.  This week, in spite of how exhausting the process is, I am reminded that this is one of the benefits of large families, dayhomes and family-style childcare.   Continue reading

An Inspiring Family

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness.”   – Mark Twain

In pursuit of a primal lifestyle, I’m mindful of not only feeding and moving my children in more healthful ways, but also engaging them with their surroundings in more meaningful ways. 

It is true that our Paleolithic ancestors probably had very little awareness of the larger world beyond their ability to travel on foot, but their complex, intimate knowledge of that environment was essential to survival.  Continue reading

The Healthy Halloween Fairy

I am on a mission to find a better way to celebrate Halloween.  At risk of sounding like the nemesis to all things fun on October 31st, I have to confess that I find myself anxiously touting my nutritional dogma in the fashion of those about to lose the debate.  The upcoming horrific little holiday is to primal eating what Christmas is to anti-consumerism; a societal onslaught on the principles of those attempting to walk on higher ground with their families.   Continue reading