We had a few dogs growing up but they weren’t really mine. They belonged to my mom. One dog died when I was very little and two others came into our lives when I was a teenager and rarely home long enough to spend much time with them. I have no memory of cleaning up after them, feeding them, or taking them to the vet. That was all on my mom. While I was away at college, my mom had to give up her dog because she was moving. Although I felt sad for her, it didn’t really faze me at all.
When I met the Dude, he often talked about his family dogs. He treated all of his dogs like they were his siblings and, whenever a dog passed away, it was devastating for the entire family. I was moved by their dog stories, but I didn’t really get it. However, the Dude and his family loved their dogs and I knew that to be married into this family meant having a dog of our own one day. It took me a while to get used to that idea.
I really did like dogs, but I didn’t necessarily like the idea of one living with me. They shed, they bark, they drool, they chew and, in general, they’re a big responsibility. Plus, we were living in a San Francisco apartment and I didn’t want a dog living in such a cramped space without a backyard. Then we had our Monkey and there was no way I was going to take on a new dog with an infant in the apartment.
By the time the Monkey turned 2 and we had already moved into a house, I finally came around to the idea that a dog would be a good idea. I had no doubt that a dog to grow up with would be an incredible experience for our kid. But when a few rescue agencies did their home inspection and informed us that it would take a long time to place a dog with us because of our toddler, I began to lose interest again. Yet, over the course of the next year, it became more and more evident that the Monkey loved dogs. He was fascinated by them. I could no longer refuse my kid the opportunity to grow up with his own dog. (continues…)
Welcome to the new and improved Ain’t Yo Mama’s Blog!
This newly updated blog has been a work in progress for well over a month and nearly all credit must be given to the Dude – lawyer by day, web designer/developer by night. No one else could have possibly been able to capture my vision, make it functional, and exceed all my expectations…or maybe they could of, but certainly at a much higher rate. Being married to your web designer does come in handy.
During this time, the Dude captured a few images of the work in progress. Click through the images below to see the evolution of the AYMB design process:
We are still working out a few kinks here and there, so please let me know if you come across any issues.
Hope you like the new site and come back again soon!
One Sunday morning at the beginning of last year, I read this piece in the New York Times Magazine, which postulates that parenting today is defined by the process of archiving digital media of our children. More morosely, it explains that
American children in 2010 have a bright, clear reason for being. They exist to furnish subjects for digital photographs that can be corrected, cropped, captioned, organized, categorized, albumized, broadcast, turned into screen savers and brandished on online social networks.
Tongue even more firmly in cheek, the article describes the initiation process into digital parenthood:
The marching orders come immediately, with the newborn photo, which must be e-mailed to friends before a baby has left the maternity ward. A conscientious father . . . must snap dozens of shots of the modestly wrapped newborn. . . . Back at a laptop, he uploads the haul, scrutinizing pixels. . . . He selects a becoming one. The mother signs off, often via e-mail, from her hospital bed. . . . Thus a parent is minted.
Indeed. And it doesn’t stop at the hospital. We all take virtual piles of pictures now that digital cameras have become nearly disposable in price and cameraphones ubiquitious. But for all of the advantages of digital media — immediacy, bottomless storage, etc. — there is one serious disadvantage: It takes but a small computer problem to lose it all. Anyone who’s experienced a hard drive crash can attest to just how many precious memories can be lost in an instant. And, disaster aside, I think we’ve all grown a bit overwhelmed by the sheer number of files and sources of our digital media.
So, given my role as Archivist-in-Chief in our household, Aimee thought I might be able to give AYMB readers some helpful advice by describing what we do in terms of documenting the Monkey, how we archive/curate it all, and how we secure and back it up. But first, some background.
My two year old has his own iPhone.
Now, before you think I am absolutely insane to buy an expensive phone for my toddler, let me assure you that I did not run out and drop $300 on a new phone for him. No way. However, being the ultimate tech-geek that he is, the Dude did run out a few months ago to get himself the new iPhone 4G. This meant that we had his old iPhone available to be donated to a good cause. We quickly realized that the best cause was our little Monkey.
The Monkey has been playing with our iPhones since around his 2nd birthday, nearly one year ago. When I discovered how toddler-friendly certain iPhone apps could be for him, I researched the most educational and creative apps and loaded them up on our iPhones. I was so impressed with certain apps, that I wrote a post back in April about my favorite iPhone apps for toddlers. With thousands of hits, that post quickly became my most popular blog post. Either there are a ton of other parents out there letting their toddlers play with their iPhone and iPads or people are simply curious to learn more about it.
It does seem that more and more people are discovering that it’s smart to let your kids play with smart phones. An iPhone or other smart phone can, with proper guidance and supervision, be used as a valuable teaching tool for children. The interactive content on an iPhone can help developing brains learn how to problem-solve and figure things out quickly and, when exposed to educational apps, a toddler’s learning process can actually be enhanced. Consider apps to be a valuable supplement to the teaching process already going on in your home or in preschool.
There are pros and cons to letting a toddler use an iPhone, so here are my helpful ideas on safe iPhone play: (continues…)
The Dude is about 2 inches shorter than me. On a good day.
There are days when we’re about the same height, like when I’m in flats and he’s wearing his fancy Cole Haans. And then there are days when I’m about 5 inches taller. Those are the days I wear heels. Those days are few and far between. It’s not because I care about being so much taller than the Dude. It’s because I’m clumsy enough as it is wearing flats.
I’m 5’9 and, before I met the Dude, I usually only dated men taller than me. I didn’t have anything against dating shorter men. Really. In fact, it was quite the opposite. Shorter guys never approached me and I was much too shy to approach anyone, let alone a cute shorter dude that didn’t even look my way. As soon as I sprouted in junior high to become the 2nd tallest girl in the class, the guys immediately stopped teasing and flirting with me. Instead, they asked me to play on their recess basketball teams. In high school, the cute short girls snagged all of my crushes, many of whom were my height or shorter. I never saw tall girls and short boys together. It was only when Tom Cruise married Nicole Kidman that I believed that there were people out there that didn’t give a crap about height.
How many times have you heard a woman say that she would never date a man shorter than her or a man say that he only likes women a certain height? It’s the kind of stuff I heard in high school and continue to hear well into my 30′s. What gives? (continues…)