A little edgy one could say


The “What if I’m not good enough” gremlins have taken over Marcel’s central processor. The kindergarten build up is sending my angelic sweet pea into the lead role of the Hot Mess series at the Mama C ville community theater. Tantrums barely describes the constant flow of tears, kicks, thrown objects (mostly at Sam-who should be wearing the helmet) and the all around refusal and chaos mode he seems most comfortable in.

Yes, I’m reassuring him. The world is too. It doesn’t seem to be helping.

Yes, I’m acknowledging his feelings, and trying hard to give him strategies to navigate the feelings (breathing deep, lots of rest, almost no sugar, tons of exercise). We’ve gone to the playground at the school a few times every week. None of this seems to be helping either.

Tomorrow he meets his new teacher at his “screening”. This, I have insisted will help. “After you meet Mrs. Bindergarten and see your classroom you’ll feel so much better!” He seems skeptical.

But if I had to start a new full time job, with little real knowledge of the expectations, place, colleagues or BOSS I’d be a hot mess too. Being the child of a demi-perfectionist/ control seeking Mama is not helpful at this time perhaps?

We just got back from the library, and checked out every “first day of school” book we could grab. Overkill?

In the car this morning he says; “Will I always be able to find my room? What if someone else is at my cubby?” We’re getting closer to harnessing the beast I’d say.

Any other parents out there with some back to school jitters under your roof? What are your best strategies? What’s helped the most?

A little April swag

Hello April. Like Marcel, this blog is in it’s fourth year. That’s fun. It celebrated it’s birthday on February 1st, completely unnoticed by me. A few days ago I had the opportunity to talk about my blog in a little informational with a friend of friend who was considering her own forays into this self publishing internet world. I was remembering my first post, a reprint of a story I had successfully published in a newsletter for single mothers choosing parenthood through adoption, or reproductive assisted methods. I was telling her how it felt to have my first unknown reader leave a comment (euphoric) and what it feels like today when too many days have passed between posts (painful, constricting). Most of all, I shared how writing this blog allowed and continues to allow me to make connections as a parent, a parent in the hue, an adoptive parent, and as a writer, that not blogging would never have afforded me.

Every time I post, I feel that I am re-opening a sacred portal that travels to shared hearts and minds across the ether for a brief moment of palpable connection. A connection I crave, celebrate, and cherish.

Continue reading “A little April swag”

Tic Tac Marcel (and a rare Mama C video moment too)

This gets really funny at about thirty seconds in. This is a testament to way too much time inside. Marcel had an intense one day 104 degree temp-sleep all day-please wake up and sip something flu (yesterday). But by today it became wildly evident that it was time to get everyone back to school real soon! I can only handle losing so many games of tic tac toe after all. Legit! He is really good!

Six week check in: picture this people

texture and balance/ Mama C and the Boys

I love this picture. It suggests balance–which I had none of last night. Marcel had all of it, walking on that plank all around the playground. It also suggests texture, which this family had plenty of last night. Sam called me a monster when I said no to an evening bike ride. (We had been at the beach all day, and he had a late afternoon bike ride across town!) Or was it when I ignored his screaming after he kicked Marcel, and Marcel kicked him back just as hard?

Continue reading “Six week check in: picture this people”

Brotherhood at camp (and a special request to my readers)

M&M 6/302011/ Copyright K. Mngqibisa http://www.littlelight.smugmug.com

What an incredible few days on the blog. Over 900 hits, seven new subscribers, and so many NEW folks joining in on the conversation–which is brave and so appreciated. Three people have started discussions with me about guest posts for the coming months, and suggestions for future “vignettes” have been emailed, tweeted, and one person even called! Keeping my eye out for a carrier pigeon.

Continue reading “Brotherhood at camp (and a special request to my readers)”

Out takes: a retrospective

Marcel and Mama/ Mama C and the Boys
Earlier.../ Mama C and the Boys
oh dear/ MamaCandtheBoys
That was only 3 years ago?/ Mama C and the Boys

This picture taking ritual appears to happen in the mornings, when an older brother is sleeping. Feels like a lifetime since this morning, let alone the moment captured above. There will be a day, when a post of some merit will appear here again. Until then, dear reader I am inflicting the picture drawer on you. Hope it was worth a pause, a sigh, and an Uh-huh. The boys have been taking up a lot of space in the world these days. In remarkable ways. In hard ways. In good ways. In how-do-I-have-this-conversation-for-the 1,000th-time ways. In please just fall asleep ways. In how did you burrow down deeper into my heart ways. In raise my head up to the ceiling and ask for patience ways…

Morning with Marcel take 2/ MamaCandtheBoys

Marcel Monday: kite. brother. love. flight. (300/50,000)

Holding my brother's kite with two hands/ Mama C and the Boys

What a magical (if oddly framed) moment to watch my 50,000th page view, and my 300th post land on the little ether island of Mama C and the Boys.  To my lurkers, family,old friends, and new visitors, this flight launch is for all of you.  Here the kite feels as if it is my words, our story rising up out of the confines of our home, street, community, town, and state to a much larger and higher place of connection with this global audience of ours. To higher grounds, deeper connections, and holding on with all hands.

Inspired by See Theo Run’s What I learned in… series I am thinking of a what (little) I know about blogging that I didn’t know then post.  I have so many posts eager to break the surface. But it’s May. And May is Mother’s Month. May is say No to every external request and deadline possible. May is my month of ease. That is what I learned in March and April–we all need Mama to be on a much slower track. I’ll have to start scratching down some notes about that too. All in good time. Happy Month of Mothering yourselves, wherever you are in the journey of mother/parenthood.

How does your TRA brain work NOW?

The Mama C teacher look/Mama C and the Boys

I’ve been thinking a lot about how I have grown in the last seven years (Sam is 6.5) not just as a mom, but as a TRA (transracial adoptive) parent.

If I had never adopted Sam, never entered into an open adoption relationship, never waited on the edge wondering what the text response from his first mom was going to be when I suggested (last week, post to come) that we come for a visit in the next year or so, I would not be this mom. I would not be this me. Continue reading “How does your TRA brain work NOW?”

Some linky love from your Mama

The fam in veg mode/ Mama C and the Boys

He was right next to me, asleep I thought, when his super sweet little three year old voice bounced off the hotel’s mission style headboard with this inquiry; “Mom? Am I a super star?”

We were on a little mini vacation-two days in a hotel in Providence, Rhode Island visiting the parents of one of my best friends. For a devout homebody he was doing remarkably well on this little adventure. Just sleeping in a different bed garnered the title of superstar in my book. I may have also used the term when he had willingly sat in the hotel pool (on the steps in the shallow end, and in the dreamy little sunken hot tub next to it) voluntarily on several occasions.

For the rest of this post, on the lighter side of Mama C, please go to Mixed and Happy.


This post on Salon, struck me for a number of reasons. I appreciate the anonymity the writer maintains, in order to write freely on the topic of her son’s “femininity”. I also love her voice, and the way she takes on the random moms she encounters. Ashamed to admit that I might have shared the thinking of some of those moms at points in my playground career.


Part of the infinitely rich Adoption Round Table over at Production Not Reproduction this “Frank answers about Open Adoption” post came from See Theo Run, in response to questions posed by O Solo Mama. I admire, as always, Harriet’s clarity and concise style. She finds her way to words that have not begun to gel in my own head.


I’m on a little hiatus of sorts as it is February break here on the East Coast. This means that Sam and I are clocking some serious Mommy-Sammy hours, which I am trying to just enjoy, and not look at like a blogging petri dish! We’ve been to the movies, the car wash, the donut shop, the gymnasium, and the accountant! (Speaking of which–the adoption tax credit extension is something you should research/ask your accountant about if yours expired last year, or maybe even the year before. Just saying!) I have two exciting guest bloggers coming soon to a Mama C near you in the next few days and weeks.

On my own mind/brewing is a post on my own transracial adoption parenting successes and areas for major improvement. I’ve had some knock me over with a feather moments in the last few weeks. I’m eager to give them voice, and invite you in.