Why This President Matters to My Brown Boy

Life As Mom, MMM Showcase, Parental Intel Friday, January 25, 2013

Finally did it. Finally wrote about why President Barak Obama matters most to me, and to my son’s future. It’s been four-plus years in the making, but it’s finally here. Actually, the essay is on Mom.me’s new blog.

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In the essay I talk about attending the President’s second inauguration earlier this week, and how being there live pushed me to share (shout?) my feelings on the symbolic value of a black president.

Have a read and definitely let me know what you think.

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After filing my story to Mom.me (I had just 24 hours!), I went out to run my errands. One stop was at the post office. Had to buy a special stamp for a square envelope. Yes, you know I was griping about this. I mean, 65 cents because the envelope is cute? Anyway, I digress … Since I was there, I figured I’d ask about the Black Heritage Forever stamp. Wasn’t there yet. They still had last year’s version. I remembered reading about a special stamp commemorating the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation.

So I asked for those.

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Wow, right? Beautiful and profound. It all left me feeling proud, humbled and hopeful.

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*The first image is a photo of artwork created by Dominant Primate. Seeing it live, you are struck by the meticulous work that went into making it.

Pausing to Give Proper Thanks

Life As Mom, MMM Showcase, Parental Intel Thursday, November 22, 2012

At my son’s preschool they asked the kids to share what they are thankful for, in prepping to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Here’s his answer (that’s me on the right, by the way!):

Oh, and the one on the left who looks like he’s frowning? That’s his Dad. However, the child assured me that “we are all three laughing.”

Thanksgiving really is a lovely time of year — in theory. Push aside for a moment the crazy that is traveling on Wednesday, Thanksgiving “eve,” to get to family. Forget, for even longer than a moment, the Black Friday madness that too often ends badly, with some poor soul being trampled in the stampede of wild-eyed shoppers. And think only about the gratitude. This one day where we pause and give thanks for all the goodness in our lives: health, love, family, food, freedom.

I’m so very thankful for all of these things. This life, it’s truly wonderful.

And since we’re all sweet-potato-pie-mushy right now, I want to use this space to also give thanks for one more thing: YOU! All of you, whether you’re in the U.S. or elsewhere around this globe. Thank you for reading Ms. Mary Mack blog. Really. Thank you for walking along this path with me, learning life lessons and gathering up compassion as we go.

Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving Weekend, friends.

Yes, Yes, But What About Meeeeee?

MMM Showcase, Parental Intel Thursday, September 20, 2012

If you’ve read MMM for the last two years, you know that I’m a fan of journalist/blogger Lisa Belkin. In fact, I used to do a weekly, blog/link wrap-up called And So It Was Blogged (clever, I know), and a week rarely went by where I didn’t include something from Motherlode (the NYT‘s wildly popular parenting blog that Belkin headed up for three years before moving on to Huffington Post Parents last fall).

Turns out, Belkin actually read MMM, and once left a comment on this post inviting me to email her (yes!) to discuss writing for her on Motherlode (YESSS!).

I giddily wrote two essays for Belkin’s Motherlode: this one about being mistaken for the nanny (girrrl.), and then this one on dealing with other people’s bratty kids.

Last month, at BlogHer ’12, I got the chance to meet Belkin, in person. We had only emailed and spoken on the phone up, so it was lovely to hear her say: “Gimme a hug!” Indeed, she’s cool like that. Anyway, we chatted briefly, but it reminded me how much I enjoyed working with her. Now, if you’ll kindly allow me just a little bit more self-promo here, we’ll get to this:

My first essay on Huffington Post Parents!  

It was great working with Lisa B., and I’m definitely looking forward to doing it more.

This piece is about battling, what I call, The Borings that often come attached to parenthood, like a weird, checkered pouch on an otherwise fab skirt. Happy to say that the response on this has been great. Lots of mothers (vets and newbies) told me some form of, “I can soooo relate!

Anway, have a read and let me know some of your tactics for tackling The Borings.

Got 99 Problems, but a List Ain’t One

Life As Mom, MMM Showcase Wednesday, December 14, 2011

All right. So I don’t have 99 problems. Maybe there are two sorta complaints, if I’m being particularly grouchy about things. But this was probably my one opportunity to quote Jay-Z on a parenting blog. #justletmebegreat

Big, happy news to report, friends. Ms. Mary Mack made Babble’s Top 100 Mom Blogs. And we’ve got a splendid badge to show for it, too. Here it is below, and also in its new home: just glance over there to your right. A little lower. There! Pretty, ain’t it?

Making this whole thing even sunnier? MMM came in at Number 50!

“I like to kick, stretch and kick — I’m 50!”  

Sally O’Malley and S-dot Carter quotes aside, this is really a great honor. To be listed along with these remarkable women I admire and respect — mothers carving out their own molds for how to parent — is just the extra sprinkle of sugar on what has been a delightful blogging experience. Thank you, friends, for reading along through it all.

Now, let’s celebrate a bit. Since we haven’t given a Fa-la-la-lala Alert yet this week, this feels like the perfect time to just that.

The question: What are your top two (or three!) Christmas/Holiday songs? These are the ones that raise your cheer every time. So much so that you might even consider listening to them in the middle of the year, during a heatwave. These songs are THAT happy-making.

Here are mine, I think, and in no real order:

  1. “The Christmas Song” by Nat King Cole
  2. “Wonderful Christmastime” by Paul McCartney
  3. TIE (why not just make it top 4, right? I don’t know. A tie seems more Yuletide-y.):
    “This Christmas” by Donny Hathaway + “Little Drummer Boy/Peace on Earth” by Bing Crosby & David Bowie.

Leave yours down below in the comments or head over to the MMM Facebook Page and list your top songs there (while you’re at it, do “Like” us if you haven’t already. Thanks!).

The prize: A $15 iTunes gift card, so that you may load up on some of these holly, jolly jams.

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