When Do We Teach Kids to Conform vs. Being an Individual?

Tomorrow is picture day at my kids' elementary school, and this year is a big one: My daughter is in fifth grade. While the children in the other grades usually sport a range of attire (with my kids typically at the most casual end of the spectrum), fifth graders are supposed to step it up significantly. Since the start of school, I've been receiving notices about fifth grade picture day. All of them have contained this language: Fifth grade boys traditionally wear dress slacks, button down shirt, tie, jacket and dress shoes. Fifth grade girls traditionally wear dresses....more
It is such a fine balance isn't it? Not just picture day but everyday, in all sorts of ...more

Be Yourself ?

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Running Schools Like a Business

The problem as I see it is that children are not products. Each child is a unique individual who enters the school system with all the baggage and support of his/her experiences. There is no one perfect way to transform four-year-old pre-K students into graduating seniors of equal performance. Praise the Lord that no one has ever considered athletic ability to be something every student must master before graduation. I wouldn't have made it out of high school....more

[365day Attitude] What It Means To Be Daddy’s Girl

I’ll be honest here – Father’s Day has been kind of a stretch for me lately. Not because I don’t think my dad is awesome – he is for sure. It’s just the timing and the context. See my Dad compared to other dad’s is well…pretty weird. And the more I have gotten to know him the less impact I feel a silly old preprinted card from the store is going to be (and I’m a bit too old for macaroni glued to cardstock). ...more

25 Things That Make Me ME

I was in high school during the very height of the grunge era, the Gen X era, the era in which we felt it was trendy to avoid being trendy and in which the mere idea of “trendy” was rather offensive. We searched for ways to make ourselves individuals as much as possible within the throng of Doc Martins, thrift store flannels and Pearl Jam t-shirts....more

Love the wristbell thing - unique style is soooo where it's at :)

Can't say I would marry ...more

12 Tips on Individuality From Award-Winning Novelist Jean Kwok

For BlogHer's monthly series of 12 tips to help you Own Your Beauty, novelist Jean Kwok takes on this month's theme: Individuality. ...more
Great list! Even if you only follow suggestion #1, and speak to yourself as if you were your own ...more

Talking to Teens: It's OK to Be Unique

My blogger friend Heather from Hangry Pants described toxic people in the most eloquent way: She called them Flower Cutters. Flower Cutters are people who are quick to slam you, to make you feel small and worthless with a cruel remark. A perfect example of a Flower Cutter statement, according to Heather, is, “You are soooo lucky you can eat all that chocolate cake and not get fat. I would be like a WHALE!” Snip, snip. Thanks for cutting my flower. ...more

please stand by lovelies while I uh...figure out this here blogging contraption :Dmore

Clothes Are Not for Hiding Flaws: Style and Self-Expression With Erin Loechner

The thing I love about clothing, you see, is how a necessity -- items which, let's face it, are really just supposed to keep the weather out -- has involved into a form of self-expression. ...more

I love the point of this post. I have been trying to do this more- wearing just what makes me ...more

They are growing up.....and that's ok by me....

I just want my kids to be themselves.....really. It seems like there is so much information out there about connecting with our kids, doing a better job than the "obviously detached" generation of parents before us, reading our kids "signs"...but even still.... so many parents can't do it. Why does it seem so easy for some to turn down the volume on their children's voices? I knew early on in my journey of becoming a mom that the one thing I wanted so badly for my child(ren), was to simply grow up.... That's right...I WANTED them to grow up....more

3 Thought-tips for Refuting the question: "Am I Doing It Right?"

Disclosure: I struggle with this still. But here's the thing. Look at the question behind the question: The deeper question? it's a permission thing. Am I allowed to own my individual take? Am I allowed to do it (whatever 'it' is) the way I think it oughta be done? I hear you. I've asked this. A lot. I've asked this with regard to professional life and personal life. I've asked this in regard to everything. Is this right? Should it look like this? What do I really think?...more