Catherine Connors is a mother, writer and recovering academic who traded the lecture hall for the playroom and discovered that university students and preschoolers have much the same attention span. She still dips her toes into academic waters by writing the occasional scholarly article about the place of motherhood in Western philosophy, but mostly now she changes diapers and wipes noses and indulges in long reflections on whether Yo Gabba Gabba is a harbinger of the decline of western civilization. Oh, and she blogs: in addition to Bad Mother blogging at BeliefNet, she is, among other things, the author of HerBadMother.com, Managing Editor of MamaPop, moderator of Her Bad Mother’s Basement, co-founder and co-editor of WeCovet, Contributing Editor at BlogHer, and (deep breath) founder of and contributor to Canada Moms Blog. And in her spare time… oh, wait. She doesn’t have spare time. But she’s okay with that.
My daughter’s junior kindergarten class had a homework assignment last week: decorate a construction paper cut-out Christmas tree. Not just color it or paint it or throw glitter at it: decorate it. With stuff found around their homes.
Emilia takes directions like these very seriously. “I can’t just put stickers on it, Mommy. I have to find things in our house.”
And so she proceeded to trawl the house for random bits of whatever to stick to her tree, among which: a bottle cap, ribbon from one of her birthday gifts, bits of aluminum foil, packing tape, more ribbon, another bottle cap, some strips of brown fabric that may or may not have been torn from one of her brother’s stuffed bears, bits of paper on which she wrote her favorite words and numbers (“good” “candy” “39”) and two or three dust bunnies that she found under the sofa. Most of these she clustered near the top of the tree, because, as she said, “it’s very important, Mommy, to always put all your best stuff at the top.”
So it all had to to on the top. Well, all of it except the brown bear-fabric, which had to go at the bottom, “because brown always goes to the bottom.”
And so we ended up with this: