Cue the tears.
Now that I’m a mother of two, I appreciate my mother even more.
Good evening everyone! Have you ever heard of Loving Day? I didn’t until recently. It’s an an annual celebration held on June 12, the anniversary of the 1967 Supreme Court decision of Loving v. Virginia, which struck down all of laws forbidding marriage between people non-white and white.
People often remark that when you love who you love, it doesn’t matter, and the world shouldn’t either. I believe that is the case, but being in an interracial marriage is very different than marriage with two people of the same race. It becomes even trickier when you add children to your multiracial family.
What’s different you ask? I’ll be happy to tell you.
Spring break is a time that college kids and educators look forward to all year long. Vacations and outings can be challenging because not all activities are suited for toddlers.
As an educator, the closer it gets to spring break, the more it feels like a permanent full moon! We start to feel the itch as much as the kids do.
This week the girls and I have done a little of everything while daddy has worked hard on the farm (no spring break for him). I’ve composed a list to help you recharge, and enjoy the break with your toddlers.
I love my kids, but at times they drive me crazy! Does anyone else feel this way? What can you do when you need a break?
Here are a few tips:
Both of my parents were born and raised in Jamaica, but came to the states as adults. I never really thought about how my Jamaican family was different from others until I was told me no about something that most other parents said yes to. My father was in the Air Force, so many of my friends had parents from different countries, which brought about their cultural norms.
As an adult no longer surrounded by other military families, I have settled with my family in the south. Many people I encounter live close to family, and have for generations. This highlights the stark differences between my Jamaican upbringing and theirs.
Here are a few things I have noticed:
There are no international markets near me, so when I want to eat Jamaican food or season my food with Jamaican spices, I have to ask my mother to purchase for me, get it from Atlanta, or my grandmother mails it to me from up north. Sometimes I just have a craving for authentic Jamaican food!
Once when my uncle came to visit from New Jersey, I cried because he ate the last bit of ackee and saltfish (national dish). I didn’t know when we would have a chance to eat it again, and I thought it was unfair because he ate it all the time in New Jersey.
Their favorite Jamaican food is porridge. Americans make fun of me all the time if they happen to hear me mention it.
Believe me, if you had it, you would understand why baby bear was crying when Goldilocks ate all of his!
My southern friends make fun of me for not liking grits; but I blame it on porridge! You don’t have to take my word for it, listen to a few Bob Marley songs and you’ll hear all about his love for cornmeal porridge.
Jamaicans love to sing…all..the..time!
My mother sent me to Jamaica a few times as a toddler, but the first time I remember was in July 2010. All the resort staff was singing, as well as people in the community. I felt such a connection to my roots! Now it made sense to me why I have always done that.
And guess what, my kids make up songs and sing all the time too!
Growing up, I always remembered my parents being friends with other Jamaicans, or people from other islands. Eating Jamaican food & listening to reggae makes me feel at home wherever I am. I want to make sure that my girls take pride in our Jamaican family.
When my husband & I married, it was important to me that he had a love of my culture. I remember him playing Bob Marley on the way to a date & thinking, “This relationship is off to a good start!”
I have a close relationship with my parents. In fact, I talked with my mom about this post last week as I was in the planning phase. I still look to my parents for guidance.
Jamaicans utilize their family resources and look to their elders for guidance.
This is essential for survival-a similar family trait to Asian and Hispanic cultures.
Jamaica’s motto is Out of many one people. No matter the skin color, if you were born in Jamaica, you are a Jamaican. I have met many Jamaicans of different ethnicity, but the culture, the food and the music tie them all together. I hope to instill this in my children.
I hope that as my children grow, I can share my love of Jamaican culture with them. On my first visit as an adult, I felt a strange connection with the land that I can’t explain. Everything that I heard my parents and grandparents talk about as a child, came to life for me the moment I stepped off the plane.
How many of you were raised in a culture besides the American culture? Do you seek to share those cultural pieces with your children? I can’t wait to hear from you!
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Christmas is one of my favorite holidays. The lights. The food. Two weeks off from work. Christmas pajamas. More time with family. Christmas carols. The nativity scene. Watching the kids rip open their presents.
What I don’t love about the Christmas holidays is what it does to my kids after it’s all over. The late nights with family mean too much sugar and not enough sleep. What do you do after you’ve eaten too much and your kids are way too stimulated? I’m so glad you asked!
Good evening all! I’m so excited to share this interview with you. Since starting this blog in July, I’ve had a variety of people reach out to me through social media outlets. My biggest following to date is on Instagram. I love interacting with other moms, especially those that understand the joys and trials of raising biracial children.
What does a school counselor and therapist have in common? Apparently a whole lot! Tiffany Coleman and I have never met, but talked for close to an hour about growing up biracial and all things race and raising kids. Let’s jump right to it…..
I love having daughters. I always wanted a sister (and didn’t get one) so this is the next best thing. I feel like I was meant to do this. However, there are definite joys & challenges to raising little girls. Growing up in a home dominated by testosterone, I’ve been on a learning curve raising daughters.
As I walk through the grocery store, I often get smiles as people compliment me. And then comes the dreaded, ” You have two girls. You sure are going to have your hands full.” Having two young children close in age keeps me hands full. But what specifically makes people feel sorry for parents of daughters?
Here’s what I’ve discovered:
Discussing race often brings people discomfort. Dr. Francis Wardle, The Center for Biracial studies founder and expert, gives several suggestions for raising biracial kids and how to talk about race with them.
His book, Tomorrow’s Children, outlines several suggestions for raising healthy, self-assured biracial children.
As you can see, my book is now falling apart at the seams.
I found his contact information on his website, The Center for the Study of Biracial Children. He emailed me back quickly and we scheduled a date for the phone interview.
If you’re unfamiliar with the expert on biracial studies, here’s a brief bio: he has published eight books, two on multiracial children. He has also published about 400 articles in journals, national and international magazines, trade publications, interracial organization newsletters, and popular newspapers, on a variety of subjects including interracial families, play, young children, playgrounds, and education.
He received his Ph.D in Curriculum and Instruction with a focus on Early Childhood from the University of Kansas in 1983.
Since 1997, he has been teaching at Red Rocks Community College in the Early Childhood department, serves as a teacher/mentor at the University of Phoenix School of Advanced Studies, and last but not least, he is a writer.
Good evening ya’ll! It’s been such a busy week. I’ve been doing a lot of writing. I wrote a guest post entitled: 7 Books to Help You Talk to Your Child about Being Biracial. As you all know, we love to read, so I thought I’d share some of the books I’ve used to discuss multiculturalism and being biracial with my girls. As our little library grows, I’ll do another post with more book reviews for you all!
I’m excited to share with you that I had two articles published by the Huffington Post last week. Yes, two! I was elated to have one, and honored that they would even consider two! Seeing your name in print is every writer’s dream. Next stop, write a children’s book. If you want to check them out, click the titles, they are linked for you: How Not to Offend Mixed Raced Families & How to Teach Your Kids to Love the Skin They’re In.
Last night I was privileged to interview Dr. Francis Wardle.
For those of you who are unfamiliar, he is an author and professor. He has spearheaded research in many areas, but specifically multicultural education as well as multiracial children and families. He has published hundreds of articles, 6 books, and many chapters in books. He is white and his wife is black. They have been happily married for over 40 years and I was delighted to pick his brain. I’ll share more with you later this week.
I can’t wait to share my interview with you. Are there any topics you’d like to see me cover in the future? Enjoy what’s left of your weekend!