In case you didn’t see the Facebook post yesterday, Sweet Baby Olive lost her battle with AML – acute myeloid leukemia – yesterday. Olive’s mom wrote a beautiful blog post on breastfeeding Olive through her diagnosis. Maggie’s and Olive’s story touched my heart and my heart is heavy today with the news of her passing.

Incidentally, every other piece of information I share with you today will seem trivial in comparison to the news about Olive. Stop reading now if you’d like and go do something lovely in the world to honor the life that passed instead. (Or do both.)

Values-based parenting is a big deal for me, and so I love this series from Ask Moxie exploring the topic.

Little A is still waking through the night. My friend A posted a link to this piece called “Lessons from a Sleeping Baby” on Facebook the other day. My friend A has twins and has had ups and downs with their sleep habits.  She had posted the article before – and I had read it before – but I read it again this time and, again, it resonated.

The author says of her first child, who was a terrific sleeper:

When other parents confided that they were still nursing at 1 a.m. with a six-month old, or that their 11-month-old woke them up crying in the wee hours of the morning, or that their toddler called out for water and they responded with a sippy cup, I felt like rolling my eyes. I thought Penny’s sleep habits came because I had played by a set of simple rules and she obeyed. I thought they came because I did it right.

Whether it’s my own sensitivities around the subject or the reality that people do treat me this way, I feel like this is people’s reaction any time I say that A is still not sleeping. (Unless I am talking to another mom who has raised a wakeful child, of course. Then we are talking the same language.)

When the author’s second child was more wakeful than her first, she learned some lessons:

Over the years I’ve learned some practical things about sleep, but what I’ve really figured out is that teaching my children to sleep isn’t a litmus test for good babies or good mothering. Rather, teaching them to sleep is about establishing a relationship of care even when it is exhausting and difficult and I worry that it will never end. It is about sacrificing my desire to get back to “normal” life and relinquishing my hopes to conform my children to a set of rules I read in a book. Teaching them to sleep is about treating my children as individuals and trusting my instincts about when to hold and when to let them cry, when to wake them up and when to let the nap continue.

I am dying to get back to some semblance of a well-rested “normal” existence. But my nighttime job is still not over. It’s helpful to hear other mothers speak in these terms.

It may seem I’ve been hammering the whole screen time / TV issue a lot lately. There’s been a lot of good stuff written lately, and I am guessing that’s because so many of people have been shut in with kiddos during this wacky winter! Hand in Hand Parenting offered up this really good piece on empathy, play and television.

Check out this gorgeous, vintage potato salad from Neo-Homesteading.

These cauliflower muffins from A Cilantro Color would be a fun way to add some veggies to your plate.

My husband and I used to grab samosas frequently from our nearby Whole Foods. Now that we are gluten free that’s not an option, but we can get the same flavor profile from Nom Nom Paleo’s deconstructed version here. I would have to alter the recipe a bit because I can’t eat nightshades. If you are curious about nightshades, or still have lingering symptoms despite cleaning up your diet and suspect a food-based cause, check out this great article from Sarah Ballantyne, a/k/a The Paleo Mom, for loads of info on them.

And finally, if you have had a c-section or other abdominal surgery, you will want to read through this piece from Pelvic Pain Rehab on managing scar tissue in that area. The article details some of the problems that may arise from scar tissue, and some of them are surprising. Give it a read.

That’s it for me today. Enjoy your weekend.

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