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Showing posts from January, 2019

Sleepover Success

My second grader has now completed one sleepover party as a guest and another as the hostess! I don't usually do this, because I'm faking my way through life just like everyone else, but I feel so good about how happily both of these occasions went that I have compiled a list of tips for a successful slumber party, whether your child is a guest or a host.


For Hosts
It is so wonderful to have a day of recovery after the party ends. For example, if the children will be spending Friday night to Saturday morning, don't plan to do anything but nap on Sunday.Try to invite guests who all know at least one other guest besides the host. If possible, choose a group that has something in common--all acquaintances from the same school or scout troop or church or neighborhood. Ensure that your home is a safe environment, and be prepared to discuss accident prevention, rules, and emergency plans with parents who may have concerns. (All parents will have concerns, of course, and some of th…

(Almost) 10-Year Challenge: Remember Unshopping?

Does anyone remember that old buzzword, before KonMari fever sparked joy and rage in equal measure, because Americans love following self-help instructions and also because outrage sparks joy for Americans?

And will anyone remember the 10-year aging challenge on Facebook 10 years from now? (If Facebook still exists in 10 years, I guess "Memories" will remind us.)


Anyway, looking back at my old Facebook photos and my old posts on the Magic Nutshell, it seems that a decade of aging has transferred all the fat from my cheeks to my... other cheeks. Also, I started writing about unshopping (the trend that could have prevented the massive need for the tidying-up trend) almost a decade ago. And I obviously did not make up this concept; it's as old as civilization, probably, and had already become A Thing before the economy recovered from the recession and America began its mindless consuming again in earnest.

When I wrote about unshopping in 2010, I was a lot snarkier than swee…

Happiness Is a Slumber Party

Last year, my daughter attended her first birthday slumber party, and she had the time of her life. For her birthday this year, she wants us to host one. I'm excited about it myself!


Last weekend, I took my daughter to her favorite tween store's post-holiday clearance sale, and we chose some party favors for her guests. (And also some cool new fashions for her, such as these boots "like Mama wears." Oh, my heart!)

The cashier at the tween store asked me if I had planned lots of activities for the party. "Nope," I said. I have absolute faith in little girls to come up with their own sweet little games and activities. No helicoptering or parental micro-managing of fun will happen under my roof! I'll set up a safe and welcoming environment, set the ground rules, give a tour of facilities and refreshments and playthings, and let them do as they please, within the guidelines (no unsupervised use of online devices, for example).

The way I see it, slumber parti…

Journaling for Millennia, Not Just for Millennials

Despite my best efforts to promote the call to "BE BESTIAL," it seems that one of the hottest New Year's resolutions this year is... journaling.

While that isn't a very "bestial" practice at all, it is kinda visceral if you do it by hand in a stream of disorganized consciousness. People with lives fancy enough to allow the time and space for rumination and anxiety disorders have been journaling as self-care since ancient times. As Candida Moss writes for The Daily Beast,

Apparently many wealthy, educated [ancient] Roman men struggled with feelings of anxiety. These were men who were already trying to live what we might call 'self-aware' lives: they studied philosophy, they lived in moderation, and they tried to regulate their behaviors. And yet, all the same, they would feel psychic distress. Anxiety, it turns out, is not just a modern phenomenon that only affects 'spoiled millennials;' it is actually a millennia-old condition. Roman author…