Children

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Collection
Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder's Family

Let’s Get Real About Marriage and Parenting

Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder PhD

“Being a diplomat is no career for a woman who wants to have a family,” said the consul.

“By the time you’re ready to get married he’ll be married,” said my mother.

“Don’t put off having children,” said the prominent professor.

Princess Merida from Disney/Pixar's "Brave"

Braving a Botoxed World: A Mother's Tale

Evelyn Becker

In the recent Disney/Pixar film, Brave, a young princess defies an age-old custom and fights to make her mother understand that she is not ready for marriage. I know you’d rather not think of the Disney princesses at all, but we live and breathe, and shop at Target, so I contend---if forced to choose among that whole pastel-clad, sugary lot, you’d want your daughter to be more independent, courageous Merida, less Cinderella waiting for her prince to come, right?

Topics: Children, Motherhood
Lit Candles

May Their Memory Be for a Blessing

Evelyn Becker

On the front page of this morning’s Denver Post a picture of Veronique Pozner, mother of Sandy Hook Elementary School victim Noah Pozner, at Noah’s gravesite at B’nai Israel Cemetery in Monroe, Connecticut, assaults me as I sit down to drink my morning coffee. Veronique stands next to her rabbi, and my eyes are drawn to his kippah. And I’d thought, that perhaps, I was going to be able to start this day without crying.

Topics: Children, Motherhood, Law
Rainbow Menorah

Hanukkah Has Its Advantages, Too!

Lauren Mayer

Thanksgiving is over, meaning the few remaining stores with some discretion have put up their decorations (joining the vast majority who started in early November), and the holiday muzak is blaring everywhere – so it’s hard for Jews not to feel overwhelmed and outnumbered. Hanukkah is a relatively minor holiday, so we aren’t really going to compete with giant electric menorahs on our front yards, and it’s highly unlikely that Lifetime will air a new series of “Heartfelt Hanukkah” made-for-TV movies. And it’s particularly hard for parents – our kids are singing carols in school, making ornaments out of popsicle sticks, and hearing about their friends who anticipate scoring major gift hauls. How do we help our kids, and ourselves, feel better about this imbalance?

Topics: Children, Hanukkah
Salomé by Gustave Moreau, 1874-1876

Sarah's Choice

Susan Reimer-Torn

One recent summer weekend, my life—or my awareness of its imperatives—underwent a radical shift. My 28-year-old son was away at the beach with friends.

Judith Martin, 1918 - 2012

From 1963-2009, she developed a contemporary theater for children. The shows intimately reflected a child’s world.

A Brand New “Jewess with Attitude”

Deborah Fineblum Raub

Amid all the grandboys with their Tonka trucks, their Thomas the Tanks, and their Transformers, a tiny but distinctly female presence dropped into our lives six days ago.

Topics: Children

Isabel Hyams begins "Penny Lunch" program

January 1, 1910

On January 1, 1910, Isabel Hyams, an 1888 MIT graduate and a trustee of the Boston Consumptive Hospital, began an experimental “Penny Lunch” program in a Boston elementary school. 

Father and Daughter in Prayer

Where have all the Jewish fathers gone?

Gabrielle Orcha

Thank goodness, it’s almost Father’s Day! Which means the pressure is off, at least for a day, to please mom. Whew!

United States Postal Service

Passover Postage: Sending matzah to China

Linda Frank

Two things I don’t understand about the US Postal Service: Why it’s the workers, not customers, who go “postal.” Secondly, how it could be in trouble when it has me.

Susan B. Anthony circa 1855

Occupy (Working) Motherhood

Deborah Siegel

Susan B. Anthony was born 192 years ago today; we share a birthday. I am 43. The late great suffragist once said: “Our job is not to make young women grateful.

Topics: Children, Motherhood
Roslyn Bernstein's Daughter Julia at the Educational Alliance Coop Nursery School

The Hanukkah bush: Raising Jewish kids in downtown NYC

Roslyn Bernstein

For those of you not around New York City in the 1970s, raising children was a challenge. City parks were infested with drug dealers and street crime was high.

Isabella Karp in a Tallit by Miriam Karp

The story of creation: Artist Miriam Karp on making her daughter's bat mitzvah tallit

Leah Berkenwald

Miriam Karp is an artist who has been creating hundreds of one-of-a-kind ketubot since 1976.

One Jewish mother's approach to vaccinating her sons for HPV

Preeva Tramiel

Two people I know have had run-ins with HPV, the Human Papilloma Virus. One was a man my age that got a mouth cancer which was viral in origin.

Girl Scouts, 2009

Girl Scouts of Colorado take a stand against gender injustice

Kate Bigam

The Jewish community has had a varied relationship with scouting.

"The Debt," 2010

"The Debt": Mothers and daughters, secrets and truths

Susan Reimer-Torn

When is the last time you saw an action-packed film with a mature woman who must reckon with her own history as the main protagonist? This sort of screenwriting doesn’t come around too often.

"Estie the Mensch" cover by Jane Kohuth, 2011

Interview with Jane Kohuth: "Estie the Mensch"

Leah Berkenwald

Estie would rather be a dog or a turtle or a monkey than a person.

Remembering Shari Lewis

Leah Berkenwald

Today in 1998, children's television favorite Shari Lewis, a puppeteer who created the characters Lamb Chop and Charlie Horse, passed away at the age of 64 from cancer. Shari Lewis' tv shows including Shari-Land, The Shari Show, Lamb Chop's Play-Along and The Charlie Horse Music Pizza pioneered the use of participation in educational children's tv programming.

Topics: Television, Children
Postsecret Community Art Project, 2011

Our Bodies, Our Moms

Leah Berkenwald

Last Sunday on Postsecret, someone sent in a postcard (pictured right) about mothers, daughters, and body image. I think most can relate to the anonymous author of the Postsecret card.

Natalie Portman at the Toronto International Film Festival, 2010

Natalie's baby: Who cares if the father's not Jewish?

Kenny Steven Fuentes

Last week, the tabloid world went abuzz over news that Natalie Portman had given birth to her first child, a baby boy fathered by Benjamin Millepied. Portman and I have had a tumultuous relationship over the years. Had this news broken back when I was a young lad 13 years of age, I'd have been heart broken. However, due to my current status as a 25 year old cynic, I find myself barely registering this news. I pay no mind to most celebrity gossip, and politely decline to partake in most related discussions.

Natalie Goldstein Heineman, 1913 - 2010

In every organization in which she was involved, she was recognized not only for her effective leadership but for her independence, intellect, hard work and kind heart.

The battle hymn of the "bully mother"

Preeva Tramiel

Using "The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother," as a jumping off point, we can finally challenge some fond assumptions of educators and parents that have gotten us into trouble in the past 30 years.

Topics: Children, Motherhood

The Adoption and Jewish Identity Project

Renee Ghert-Zand

Dr. Jayne Guberman felt two things when her adopted daughter announced at a pre-Bat Mitzvah family education program eight years ago, “I don’t know how I feel about being Jewish.” Guberman felt it was incredibly courageous of her daughter to share this in public. She also felt very alone as an adoptive parent in the Jewish community.

Norma Fox Mazer, 1931 - 2009

Her writing apprenticeship began when she was 27 years old and the mother of three small children. She and [her husband] Harry made a pact to squeeze at least an hour out of every day to write. Frequently, this was at four o’clock in the morning

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