Archive for the 'Bloggy love' Category

Really Striking Stuff (RSS): A round-up

NS October 8th, 2010

Blog posts of note in my RSS reader this week.

Mad Women, or Life on Venus by Paris Ankara Express. Why we love to hate women on TV.

Poverty, Mayor Bloomberg and Coca-Cola at Jen’s Den of Iniquity. Why barring those on food stamps from buying soda is hypocritical, unrealistic and just plain ridiculous.

Dad Who Writes on gender and Sewing.

A conversation about birth rape at The Feminist Agenda.

Also on birth rape, my new feature for The F-Word, which was a response to a slew of articles refuting the term (quoting a piece I originally wrote in March 2008, also for The F-Word) and another article at Salon criticising my response to the criticism. Is that a confusing enough cluster fuck for ya? The only other prominent feminist blogger who had defended use of the term is Cara at The Curvature, who writes about it eloquently and intelligently in her post: On Birth Rape, Definitions and Language Policing.

Spilt Milk on why hating bullies doesn’t have to mean hating children.

Blue Milk addresses a survey done on mothers in the UK which found them more likely to label their sons as “cheeky” and “loving” and their daughters as “stroppy” and “serious.” I could hear her exasperated sighs all the way from Australia; I was sighing right along with her.

The Singing Doula on Reasons to Birth in Water.

And from the US newspaper round-up:

Candidate for governor of California recorded having a conversation about his female rival with an aide who suggested calling her “a whore” as part of their strategy. Oy vey.

No more ‘marriage gap’ for college-educated [white] women, according to the Washington Post.

No big surprise here: High school principal blocks transgender student’s bid for homecoming queen. At least the article used the student’s preferred pronouns, if there is one tiny silver lining to be found.

You have been categorised

NS July 28th, 2010

I’ve reshuffled my blogroll to add a few new ones and put everything into categories for ease of use. Many of you could’ve gone into two, even three categories so I put you where I thought you fit best but if you’d rather be in Feminist Mothers than Birth and Breastfeeding or in Parent Blogs rather than Expats, let me know and I’ll swoop you up in my beak and, with my blogging talons, deposit you safely in your rightful category.

And if you’re not on my blogroll but should be, leave a comment with your URL and the category under which you think you’d best fit.

Thank you, gentle readers [I've always wanted to say that].

Good reads: Internet edition

NS July 27th, 2010

Summer holidays and the doula business are kicking my ass, leaving me little time for writing. But I’m still reading, oh yes! And here’s what’s been tickling my fancy and catching my interest lately.

Mila’s Daydreams – A new mother in Finland tries to imagine what her daughter is dreaming of when she naps. Adele creates gorgeous landscapes around baby Mila and captures it on film. Brilliant, gorgeous and utterly adorable.

Color Me Katie – A freelance photographer and street artist in Brooklyn. Draws funny faces on marshmallows and works with an improv group that recreated a scene from Star Wars on the New York subway recently. Cute. And very, very colourful.

The 52 Seductions – A woman and her husband of 10 years set out to improve their sex lives and seduce each other all over again. Funny, informative, touching and honest. And if you’re looking for new things to try in the bedroom, this is a great place for ideas.

Mama Is… - The amazing cartoonist behind Hathor the Cowgoddess, lactivist extraordinaire. Puts into one drawing what many of us ‘Boob Nazis’ waffle on for two pages saying.

Catalog Living – “A look into the exciting lives of the people who live in your catalogs.” Some of these actually made me guffaw. Very funny.

Offbeat Mama – The spinoff site from Offbeat Bride. Its tagline is “Parenting against the grain” and it embraces alternative lifestyles and a diverse range of parents. Specifically, the creator says, “We support mothers integrating their pre-kid identities and lifestyles into their post-kid realities.” Often contains gorgeous photographs and unique stories from real parents around the world.

Underbellie – Written by the fabulous Kelly Hogaboom, Underbellie is thoughtful, spot-on, uniquely written analysis of feminist parenting and culture. You must read this post and this one. Fan-freaking-tastic.

Birthing Beautiful Ideas – A wonderful blog I recently discovered, written by Kristen Oganowski– “mother, doula, graduate student, feminist, and writer.” Aside from the grad student bit, we appear to be twins. She wrote a beautiful post that made me tear up today. Go read it. Bring tissues.

What (or who) have you been reading lately?

Exciting news and a free smell

NS April 14th, 2010

I have a few items of exciting news to share. Well, they’re exciting to me. You? You’ll most likely yawn and say ‘Is that all? This woman needs to get out more.’ And to that I would say you’re right but avoid saying that to my face, especially if I’ve been drinking red wine or whiskey. I’m a pacifist in theory but we all know how theories pan out in practice. Like that communism one that was supposed to make all the world one, big, happy, altruistic family but instead led to people queueing up for miles to get their hands on a McDonald’s quarter pounder with cheese, extra onion and pickle, in Red Square. Need I say more?


Exciting item #1: Inspired by Gappy’s post, with accompanying photographs, about her trip to Hay-on-Wye, I’ve booked myself in for a train ride and overnight stay there, a few days after my birthday this summer. I’ve been dreaming of going away on my own just to read and relax and I knew right away that this would be the perfect place to do that. Second-hand book stores in which there are comfy chairs to sit and cats to stroke? I’m sold.

Exciting item #2: I’ve booked into a doula training course for the end of May. After I’ve completed the course I have to attend four births to become fully qualified. I’ve already got one lined up in August (a good friend’s) but need to find three more. If you, or anyone you know, are due this summer and live in the South West London or Surrey area, and are looking for an inexpensive doula, do let me know! I’m quite excited about this new career path, really. Not only will I get to help women with something I’m passionate about but I can earn a more reliable income from home which will take some of the pressure off of needing my writing to become a paid venture right away. A win-win situation, really! Besides which, I think I’ll be good at it and enjoy it.

Exciting item #3: I’ve entered into the Race for Life to benefit Cancer Research UK, in which I will run 5k a the end of July in Clapham. Me. A woman who has never been a runner and hasn’t done any form of exercise (other than walking loads and chasing the children) for a good four years. I’ve been getting up at 6am and running twice a week (and once or twice at the weekend) for a couple weeks now. I’m feeling good about it. If you’re so inclined to want to sponsor me (thus blackmailing me giving me more motivation), there is a button on my sidebar that will take you to my sponsorship page. Watch out, Clapham! There will a woman huffing and puffing her way through your streets and commons come July 31st, and she will likely be tripping over her shoelaces as she Tweets about it at the same time.

Exciting item #4: My first guest post, in which I give my thoughts on the term ‘mummy blogger/blogging’  is up at Gappy’s ‘Single Parenthood. Tales from the front-line’ blog. In five years of blogging I have never been asked to do a guest post so I was very excited and flattered to be invited into someone else’s space, especially by Gappy whom I greatly admire and like immensely. She’s a real talent and a new blogger so if you haven’t already got her on your list of must-reads, go check her out!

And finally, a sniff. I’ve managed to capture my favourite smell (line-dried sheets) and convert it to HTML. If you move your mouse rapidly over the blank space below, the scent should release itself. You’ll probably have to lean in quite close and give your screen a good sniff but it’s there, I promise.



Lovely, isn’t it?

Photo credit

I can haz a MAD Award?

NS April 5th, 2010

My lovely friend Josie is part of a small group of bloggers who have put together some fantastic awards for sites written by UK mums and dads, aptly called the MADS. Now, I’ve never won an award for anything in my adult life, least of all for my writing, so I was surprised at how nice it felt to learn I’d been nominated in three categories: MAD Blogger of the Year (“For the blog that has most amazed and entertained you over the past year”), Most Inspiring MAD Blogger (“For the blogger who inspires you with their courage, humour and insight”) and Best MAD Blog Writer (“To celebrate the blogger who deserves a place on the best-seller lists”).

As lovely as it was to be nominated, I was a bit embarrassed and unsure how to react at first. I thought, “There’s no way I’m going to ask for votes and get embroiled in a competition,” but I snapped out of that pretty quickly and told myself to stop being so bloody British about it. I’m American, for god’s sake! I should be making up t-shirts, slapping bumper stickers on my car and throwing a ticker-tape parade in my own honour. Maybe I could even get hats for my family to wear that say, ‘My mama got nominated for three blog awards. Your mama can SUCK IT.’ I’m sure it’d go down a treat at the pre-school gates.

Kidding aside, I am actually very flattered to have been put forward and decided that, you know what, I’m NOT going to just sit here and be all humble about it and hope that a few people throw some votes my way via osmosis. I work damn hard on this site and have been at it for five years; I’m not a real old-timer like Dooce (NOT ENOUGH USE OF CAPS FOR THAT) and I may have grown a bit cynical after having been around the bloggy block a few times, but I’m still a person. A person with feelings. A person who feels things deeply.

Um, yeah.

What I’m trying to awkwardly say is that if you like what I have to say and/or think I’m a competent writer, I’d be honoured and grateful if you wanted to vote for me here, in any of the three categories I’ve already been nominated in. You can also get to the nomination page by clicking on the MADS badge in my sidebar.

The winner of the Blogger of the Year award gets a new iPhone, laptop and digital camcorder. I could use the latter two items desperately but since I already have an iPhone I would probably give it away in a contest held on this here blog, for my dear, sweet readers. Just sayin’.

All right, I think that’s it. I’ll go eat a big slice of humble pie now.

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