Incest, Gay Marriage and Arranged Marriage: Convo With A Five Year Old

Lady C: Mommy did you know that girls can marry girls and boys can marry boys?
Aisha: I did know that, where did you learn that?
Lady C: Pre-K… I can’t remember which classmate. So that means I can marry a girl if I want to?
Aisha: You sure could. You should marry someone you love.
Lady C: Great, so does that mean we can get married?
Aisha: No… you can’t marry a member of your family.
Lady C: So I can’t marry grandma either?
Aisha: Nope.
Lady C: Fine. I will marry a boy. Mom, can you find me a nice boy to marry some day? I don’t think I will be able to find a boy to marry.
Aisha: I sure will. That would be my pleasure.
Lady C: You’re the best mom.

 

And…. that was a conversation I had with Lady C the other night out of the blue. Lately she is quite intrigued with family compositions and particularly intrigued by gay and lesbian families. I was not surprised that she mentioned she learned about different families in her Pre-K class because her school embraces diversity in all respects including family composition.

It’s an interesting discussion though and layered because first she starts with the idea of marrying someone of the same sex. But when I told her she should marry someone she loves, her mind immediately went to family which I thought was ADORABLE!! That’s what love is to her… family. Best part though, her asking me to find her a husband – ha! I’m keeping this blog forever so that when she brings home that person that I don’t approve of when she’s 22 I can tell her that I have right of refusal… I hope she buys that.

Anyone else having conversations with their little ones about family composition and marriage? What would you say if your child asks if they can marry someone of the same sex. Are you ready to have that conversation? 

 

Safe…

Sleeping hard

There are few things more peaceful than a sleeping child. Especially a child as talkative as my eldest and one as busy as my youngest. When they finally fall asleep, a hallowed hush falls across the house and Aisha and I take a collective breathe. Don’t get me wrong: we love that our daughters are talkative but every parent of young children looks forward to bedtime!

At any rate, when children fall asleep at home, in a protected loving environment, they completely knock out with abandonment. It’s a manifestation of the trust they have in their home and that their parent(s) are going to protect them while they sleep. It brings me great joy that we have been able to provide that level of solace for our children and sometimes I just watch them sleeping and envy their ability to completely relax.

Now it’s a horse of a different color when your child falls asleep outside of the home. At least for me it is. Think about: your child becomes sleepy (afternoon nap or headed home after normal bed time). Children will not fall asleep until they feel safe so when they fall knock out on your shoulder or in the back of the car, that feeling of security is directly attributed to you, not their surroundings. For me, it is the greatest affirmation of trust that I can get from my children: “Ok daddy. I’m going to go to sleep now. You got me right?” My children see me as Daddy the Brave, Shoo-er of Flies, Vanquisher of Ants, Protector of Sleep (having a bit of a Game of Thrones moment)! And there are few greater feelings than that in the world.

…now if we can just get them to take a nap at the same time, we’ll be GOLDEN!!

From the Greene House…

Reader’s Choice Topic: Open Letter to Your Child’s Teacher

From time to time we will post a discussion topic that has been requested in our online Facebook community. This is the first edition of our “Reader’s Choice” topics and it’s a heavy one, not an easy one… but a topic that is always at the forefront for caregivers of children: PRIMARY SCHOOL EDUCATION.

One of our readers is a primary school teacher. She most recently taught kindergarten in the New York City public school system and will be teaching first grade in the fall. She has been a teacher since 2002 and is very passionate about providing the best education for her students. She became a teacher through the NYC Teaching Fellows Program. This reader happens to also be a very important person in our lives and someone who we rely on to provide us with educational tools for our children. She had a few discussion points centered around primary grades (pre-K to 2nd grade) but we are going to narrow it down to one particular discussion:

FOR GRADES PRE-K TO 2ND GRADE – WHAT ARE THE KEY THINGS THAT YOU EXPECT FROM YOUR CHILD’S TEACHER?

In thinking about this discussion enjoy THIS “Open Letter” written by a parent to his son’s kindergarten teacher.

If you prepared your own Open Letter to your child’s teacher what would it say? 

We look forward to hearing from you!

 

Are We Raising An Obnoxious Kid?

Children should be seen and not heard

Speak only when spoken to.

Because I said so.

Early on we decided that we wanted to mutter these phrases that we heard a LOT as children as little as possible to our own children. We decided that having outspoken children with opinions was ok and we want to encourage conversation among ourselves and our children. We both realized that leaders tend to be people who question authority and are not always compliant. Our desire for this type of child has led us to choose a school for our oldest daughter which believes that children are authentic human beings with views and opinions that should be valued almost as much as adults. They allow children to be active participants in the classroom in every way – including curriculum decisions. When we visited the school we were impressed with how much bravado the students had, how mature they were but we also smirked a little and said… “man, these kids are a little obnoxious”…

We want to raise leaders.

We don’t want to raise obnoxious kids.

Lady C (now 5 years old) is … very vocal. Real talk… we know that to some (especially to old school adults), she is a bit obnoxious. Oh yes — we’ve seen how some folks just glare when she corrects adults or asks for proof of their statements. We’ve even had people say they were “surprised” when we’ve let her get away with some of her questions or sassy talk. In her recent school end of the year report, her Pre-K teacher wrote:

“… she sometimes speaks for the sake of speaking but doesn’t really know the context of what she is talking about” …

Yep. We know that kid! We’ve got to pull it back a bit!

While we want her to have a “voice” we know that, of course, there needs to be balance because SOMETIMES it is ok to ask question after question (after question after question) and disagree with a grownup. But SOMETIMES little ones need to close those little lips and open those little ears and not.say.a.word. Leaders are vocal but leaders should know what they are talking about too. And you can learn by listening and doing. Other than moments of danger though, the question is… When is that SOMETIMES??? How do you pause the questions and ‘back talk’ in THAT moment? What is THAT moment? Is it when you are just plain tired of the fifth time they have asked “why?” Or is it when the back talk gets a little too sassy? Do you use a code for when enough is enough… a secret family word or phrase perhaps?

We are struggling with the balance of raising a kid who is not in the shadows, speaks up and asks questions versus a child who talks back too much and has driven us to the point where we yell “BECAUSE I SAID SO”.

We don’t want an obnoxious kid.

Thoughts? Give it to use straight (but don’t be obnoxious about it!)

Our Kid is “Bugging” Out

Our oldest daughter is five years old and loves being outside and playing with her friends and toys. She’s never met a park that she doesn’t like.

She often asks to go out ride her bike or scooter (poorly) but these days we always count down…. 5, 4, 3, 2, ….. SCREAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

She’s yelling because she’s seen an ant.

Sometimes it’s something worse than an ant like a huge bumble bee – but it doesn’t matter – if it is little and crawling or flying she’s out of there. And it’s sad to watch because she’s missing out on some quality jump roping and skating time.

We are at a loss for what to do! On one hand we think – just let her grow out of it but on the other hand she is literally bawling her eyes out about bugs and retreating. We’d actually like to try to go camping some day but we absolutely could not consider that now. We haven’t been making much headway with the technique of GreenEs v. Bugs where we count down the number of critters we smash (sorry – bug lovers).

So… we started looking around for some advice and the most popular method we’ve seen is to normalize bugs. Don’t worry – it’s not as drastic as throwing some roaches at her feet but trying some of the following:

  • Grab some books about bugs and learn about them.
  • Draw pictures of bugs.
  • Maybe get an ant farm.

Chime in – do you know any little ones with a fear of bugs – how are you or did you handle it? 

Offer suggestions in the comments below!

Introducing the GreenEs….

Welcome to “That’s GreenE with An E”… a family blog about marriage and parenting in the city.

This is not your typical parenting blog featuring only the female voice. This parenting and marriage thing works because it involves two of us so we will share the perspective of both of us with you.

We are going to give you a glimpse into our family which is filled with tons of comedy and reality while we raise our two daughters in the city.

familE

family photoDad: Hayden
Mom: Aisha
Children: Lady C (the school kid) and Lady H (the toddler)
We are… the GreenEs!
All of us will be pretty involved in the blog and have a presence. Most of the content will come from mom and dad but from time to time you might be see quotes, photography or artwork from the GreenE kids.

comedE

Seriously – not sure how anyone does this family thing without a huge dose of humor. So on this blog expect a little lot of sarcasm and humor. On a bad day – we hope we make you smile or laugh.

realitE

Our family is not perfect – this blog won’t be perfect. We won’t be dishing out advice so much as discussing our reality and quite often, we will be ASKING for advice and feedback.

Also, if you are looking for a blog with magical crafts that you will share broadly on Pinterest… you are in the wrong place. That’s not the GreenE’s expertise.

cityE

The silent member of our family is New York City, our home sweet home. We try to take advantage of all the things that our city offers and weave adult city fun with our kids in tow. We are always on a hunt for fun things to do with our kids. So if you know of cool things to do – please TELL US!

We look forward to journeying with you!

The GreenEs

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