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Jul 22 2011

News Roundup: Facebook Helps Save a Kid’s Life and are Playgrounds too Safe?

By at 2:30 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

-Can playgrounds be too safe? In order to prevent skinned knees (and broken bones) our our playgrounds have become quite safe. But are they also too boring? Critics say that modern play spaces “may stunt emotional development, leaving children with anxieties and fears that are ultimately worse than a broken bone.” (New York Times)

-Our own Mayim Bialik does a live taping of The Talk. She rehashes the Chelsea Handler-thinks-I’m-Sara-Gilbert moment with Sara Gilbert! OMG! (Vimeo)

-This mom used Facebook to save her son’s life. When doctors didn’t properly diagnose her 4-year-old’s illness, her social network stepped in to help.(Slate)

-Kveller editor is interviewed about the fate of Jewish names in America. We’ll give you a hint: it has something to do with a little boy named Alef. (Jewish Week)

-In other Kveller news, our resident non-parent editor, Molly, writes here about going on Birthright. At the Western Wall, she thinks about lunch. (Forward)

-For non-Jewish moms raising Jewish kids, things can get complicated. (Though they always have Kveller) (JTA)

Jun 10 2011

News Roundup: Russell Crowe on Circumcision, Weiner on his Weiner

By at 4:01 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

-If you’re a father, or a mother, or a human being with a heartbeat, you probably shouldn’t read this staggering piece about a father coping with the death of his baby. (The New Yorker)

-Could conjoined twins actually share one mind? Krista and Tatiana Hogan, 4, are Canadian twins and researchers are baffled by their brain. If you tickle one girl’s foot, the other sister can feel it. (NY Times)

-More on the anti-circumcision ballot stirring in California. Russell Crowe chimes in: he loves his Jewish friends, he hates circumcision. The Forward (OK, my husband) suggests that Russell should play Foreskin Man when the rabidly anti-Semitic cartoon becomes a movie. (The Forward)

-In ordinary circumstances we would announce with glee that Rep. Anthony Weiner’s lovely wife, Huma Abedin, is pregnant. Though that whole emailing photos of his penis thing is sort of putting a damper on things. (Media Bistro)

-In honor of Father’s Day, Jewish men weigh in on what it means to be a dad. These are, in this order, funny, earnest, and heartbreaking. And there are no less than two references to poop. And one of them just happens to be about my daughter. (The Forward)

May 27 2011

News Roundup: Espresso Machine that Dispenses Formula, the Genderless Baby, and the Obama Girls

By at 11:58 am

All the Jewish parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

-Nestle has rolled out a baby formula version of its Nespresso capsule coffee machine. There’s no option for foam, but it dispenses the formula “at precisely the right dosage and temperature, at the push of a button, in less than one minute.” While the company does have a penchant for getting moms in Africa hooked on formula, this machine is only available in Switzerland. For now. (The Guardian)

-Can you really raise a genderless child? I’m guessing no. And so are the ladies at Jezebel. They weigh in on the now famous Canadian baby named Storm whose gender is a big fat mystery. (Jezebel)

-Parenting by ZIP code. If you’ve ever moved with children, you probably noticed that each city has its own protocol when it comes to parenting. Birthday parties. School visits. Baby wearing. They do it differently in Seattle, Los Angeles, and New Jersey. (NY Times)

-The Psychological Warfare of Sasha and Malia Obama. Slideshow here. (New York Magazine)

-What happens when a marriage involves differing allegiances to baseball teams? Find out here. The editor of Jewcy is getting hitched and is blogging about the wedding plans.(Jewcy)

-Go the F— To Sleep is now a viral sensation. And I’m guessing more than a few of you have already seen a pirated version. Why is it so popular (aside from being hilarious?)”We are not supposed to not want to be with our children. We are not supposed to not want to be a parent all the time.”  (NY Times)

Did we miss anything?

May 20 2011

News Roundup: Roast Chicken, Sex, and Baby Names

By at 4:27 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.


-An Israeli couple actually named their kid “Like” this week. As in the Facebook “Like” button. This isn’t quite as bad in my mind as couples who named their children after the place where their children were conceived. Eww! (Haaretz)

-A recipe for roast chicken and sex. For parents. (Slate)

-Real Middle Aged Jewish Housewives of Queens?! OK, not exactly. But Free Range Mom, Lenore Skenazy, whose mission it is to get parents to chill out, has her very own reality television show now. Lenore got famous after she wrote a column for The New York Sun (RIP, I used to work there too) about letting her kid ride the subway by himself. Her new show doesn’t have a name yet. (The Forward)

-A gay couple–a black man and a Jew–and their black-Jewish daughter head to Kentucky where a surrogate mom births their second child. Did you get all that?  (NY Times)

May 6 2011

Weekly Roundup: Dating the Mafia, Your Mama, and Midwives

By at 5:09 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

- Our favorite potty-mouth Kveller blogger, Sarah Tuttle Singer, bares all for the Jewish Journal about how she dated a real live gangster–we’re talking semi-automatic weapons and all. (Jewish Journal)

- Still looking for the perfect mother’s day gift? Here’s a pretty great list of cookbooks for your Yiddishe mama. (Forward)

New Yorker writer Janet Malcom’s new book takes a close look at the crazy murder trial of Mazoltuv Borukhova, a 35-year-old doctor indicted in the killing of her husband after he gained custody of their daughter. The couple were both members of the insular Bukharan Jewish community in Queens. (NYT)

- A well-known Baltimore midwife was convicted of two felonies yesterday in Alexandria Circuit Court in connection with a baby’s death in Virginia. Her prosecution has triggered a passionate debate about home births.  (Washington Post)

- If you think your last trip with your kids was difficult, read about what this dad has planned. (Dadwagon)

Apr 29 2011

Weekly Roundup: Jewish Theater Really Blossoms

By at 3:32 pm

All the Jewish parenting new you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

- If you’re in New York, you can check out the new play “The People in the Picture,” described by the Times as “a sincere and queasy new musical about mother love, Yiddish theater and the Holocaust,” which just opened at Studio 54, amazingly photographed above. (NYT)

- To stick with a theme, “Anne le Musical” premiered in Paris this week, which is a musical adaptation of The Diary of Anne Frank. People were worried that there might be some issues of taste (it includes a variety of music, including rap), but the first wave of critics have stated it’s a very touching tribute to the classic Holocaust tale. (Forward)

- Studies have shown that labor intervention procedures, i.e. C-sections, have no effect on the immediate health of the baby post-birth. This has led doctors to believe that while we can’t completely eliminate interventions, we could probably get by with a lot fewer of them. (NYT)

- Our girl Mayim Bialik got a feature in the Jewish Week about her project, Jew in the City, and her overall awesomeness. We may even forgive them for their pun: “Bialik has “blossomed” on the Jewish circuit.” Oy. (Jewish Week)

Apr 22 2011

Weekly Roundup: Ricki Lake Returns, Teenager Dupes School

By at 3:18 pm

All the Jewish parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

- Ugh. Please take these pregnancy photos as a very serious cautionary tale. (Pregnant Chicken)

- A high school student pretended to be pregnant for her senior project in sociology. The teen and a select few close friends who were in on the secret recorded what her classmates said about her, both directly and behind her back, and read them at a school assembly where she revealed her pregnancy was fake. (Motherlode)

- Bryan Caplan has been deemed a sort of anti-Tiger mom for his new book “Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids“. The economist does not think parents need to stress too much over nurturing their childrens’ potential, but instead just focus on providing them a positive environment. (NPR)

- This rabbi takes a firm stand against the question: is it ever acceptable for a parent or teacher to hit a child? (The Jewish Week)

- Ricki Lake is returning to daytime TV. The single mom is at work developing a new talk-show that will cover topics like parenting, marriage, family, and divorce. (CNN)

Apr 15 2011

The Weekly Roundup: What to Expect When You’re Zsa Zsa Gabor

By at 4:15 pm

All the Jewish parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

- Zsa Zsa Gabor is 94 years old, and thinking about having a baby. Actually, it was her (ninth) husband, Prince Frederic von Anhalt’s idea to use an egg donor, artificial insemination, and a surrogate mother to carry on the legacy. While it looks like it won’t happen, my favorite part of the whole ordeal is Zsa Zsa’s only daughter’s response: “That’s just weird.”

- You know what else is just weird? Gender cake parties. You know, where the expecting parents hand over the obstetrician’s report on the sex of the baby to a baker, without looking at its results. Then, the baker makes a cake which the couple then has to slice into to reveal either a pink or blue inside and voila, it’s a girl or boy! Weird!

- There’s been a lot of hustle and bustle over strollers recently–really expensive strollers, too. Tom Scocca takes an endearingly level-headed approach to figuring out why we even need strollers, and what the alternative would be in a fast-paced city like New York.

- I am nearly positive the circumcision debate will never, ever cease to exist, and here’s another log on the fire: should teenage boys decide? If so, I think we can all say bye-bye to circumcision as we know it.

Mar 25 2011

Weekly Roundup: Desperate Grandparents and the Jewish Side of Palin

By at 4:53 pm

All the Jewish parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.

- Mama Grizzly Sarah Palin did a two-day stint in Israel this week, and the most controversial topic of conversation regarding her trip? Her necklace choice. Palin wore a rather large and visible Star of David necklace, perhaps to show her support for Israel, or perhaps because she thought it was sort of like wearing a lei while you’re in Hawaii. (Washington Post)

- RIP Sara Ruddick, whose book, “Maternal Thinking: Towards a Politics of Peace,” brought a feminist and anti-violence approach to parenting. Of her many notable theories, one that stands out is the idea that mothering is gender-neutral, stating, “Anyone who commits her or himself to responding to children’s demands, and makes the work of response a considerable part of her or his life, is a mother.” (NYT)

- You may have experienced nagging parents whose one only wish was to have grandchildren, but a couple in Israel are taking it to the extreme. After their 27-year-old son, who was unmarried and childless, died in a work-related accident, they had his sperm extracted and are now waiting for permission to find a woman to bear their grandchild. Their lawyer states: “It’s an idea of continuation. It’s a dream. Magic.” (Jewish Journal)

- Today marks the 100th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, a tragedy which killed 146 factory workers, many of which were young Jewish women. Marjorie Ingall reflects on the event and how history has perhaps painted the wrong picture of the two factory owners. (Tablet)

Mar 11 2011

News Roundup: Charlie Sheen is Jewish And Ted Nugent Is My Dad

By at 4:25 pm

All the parenting news you probably didn’t have time to read this week.


-Does your kid have Sophie the Giraffe? Yeah, well, who doesn’t. Apparently the French rubber teether that looks suspiciously like a dog toy is the number one selling baby item on Amazon. Why? This article doesn’t really tell you beyond pulling the curtain back on some well-placed celebrity endorsements. [Slate]

-Charlie Sheen isn’t just bonkers, he’s also Jewish! That whole tirade about Chaim Levine wasn’t really anti-Semitic because Sheen’s mother is in fact Jewish. Despite physically threatening a number of women, Sheen is fighting for custody of his kids. We can rest assured though that he’s decided to stop at making babies. Five children with three different women is apparently good enough. (Hollywood Reporter]

-Imagine finding your biological father when you’re 42. Now imagine finding out that your dad is Ted Nugent. That’s what happened to Brooklyn restaurateur, Ted Mann. Upon hearing the news, Mann asked of his newly found father, “‘The guy who kills everything?” Yep, that would be him. (Brooklyn Based)

-The owner of a New York breastfeeding shop is  n a heated battle with the condo board in the building where her store is housed. They’re trying to kick her out because among other things she keeps the brass door improperly ajar. She in turn filed a complaint with the State claiming that the door was too heavy for pregnant women and stroller-pushing mothers to open safely. Most interesting, though, is that the store owner is a former cop. Movie rights, anyone? (New York Times)

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