Another year gone by, another year filled with annoying parenting trends. Here are some fads I'd like to see disappear by the end of 2013:
1) Trophies for all: This one has been around for a while. We are raising our kids in a generation of "everybody wins and nobody loses" and what this does is make losers of us all. Without experiencing losing, kids don't know how thrilling it really is to bring home a coveted trophy or medal. They don't give out Participation Medals at the Olympics; let's stop giving our kids trophies for simply turning up. Think of the money, gold coloured plastic, and particleboard that could be saved.
2) Snacks at every event: From visiting the local park to half-time at a pre-school soccer game, apparently we've decided our children can not a) be hungry at any point or b) be expected to not have a snack every half an hour that c) parents must carry with them at all times. Recess snacks? Snack break at a playdate? End the madness, please.
3) Ramping up holiday time: Kids used to send Valentine's cards to only kids they actually liked. Strange concept compared to today when kids have to send in cards to everyone in the class, and half of them come with candies, stickers, or pencils attached. Then there's the mom who brings in (more!) snacks to the class on her child's birthday. Let's lower that bar (and cost, and calorie count) just a bit, OK?
4) Food Deception: This trend continues to be popular as parents everywhere hide kale, quinoa, broccoli and other healthy foods inside sauces, stews and other mixed dishes. Of course it's great to feed kids nutritious food, but they should also appreciate and learn about what they are eating so that they can make informed decisions once they leave home. One day they'll have decide what to pick for themselves or (gasp) make their own lunch.
5) Kid-Tatorship: In many households, the kid is running the show when it comes to what they eat, when they eat, when they go to bed, what activities they choose to do, and even where to go on vacation. It's not all about the kids, kids. Remember that parents are people too and make sure you're not sacrificing all of your wants for theirs.
Originally run in the Metro News.
“She [Apple] is cross because I only let them watch TV in French or Spanish. When I’m in Paris, I go to Boulevard Beaumarchais and buy all their cartoons," Gwyneth <a href="http://uk.lifestyle.yahoo.com/gwyneth-paltrow-no-more-children-babies-working-mum-cant-have-it-all-125611877.html">told UK's InStyle</a>.
“Some women can do it and that’s fantastic, but I can’t. You make choices as a wife and mother, don’t you? You can’t have it all. I don’t care what it looks like," she said in the same interview.
"We got downstairs and I made him a quick breakfast of eggs and toast followed by a spoonful of lemon flavored flax oil that I try to remember to give them both every morning," she <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/13/gwyneth-paltrow-gives-adv_n_808446.html">wrote on GOOP</a> last year.
Another <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/13/gwyneth-paltrow-gives-adv_n_808446.html">GOOP tip</a>: "The kids indulge in a super sugary cupcake before bed but I don’t feel too bad because they had a brown rice stir fry for dinner with baked sweet potato on the side. It’s all about balance!"
"I always <a href="http://goop.com/journal/see/112/a-day-in-the-life">lay the kids' uniforms</a> and school things out the night before once they are asleep. When it’s quiet I can check the 'kid list' for show and tell items to bring in, consent forms, ballet kit, etc, so that the morning is less of a scramble."
"I'll probably get kicked out of our school for admitting this, but I let Apple stay home yesterday. I just needed to be with her," Gwyneth <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/01/19/gwyneth-paltrow-in-good-h_n_811152.html">told Good Housekeeping</a> last year. "We went out to lunch, we went to the beauty salon, we were together."
"Motherhood has taught me mindfulness. If you just parent on instinct, you'll screw your kid up for life. You have to be so mindful," she said in that interview.
"We all get into the tub together," she<a href="http://www.harpersbazaar.com/magazine/cover/gwyneth-paltrow-interview-0312#slide-1"> told Harper's Bazaar</a>.
“When I’m tired, when my chips are down – that’s when I don’t parent the way that I want to parent. I can get impatient and at the end of my rope…. And I hate that and I hate feeling out of control, even if I’m just saying, 'That’s enough!' Like, I can’t deal. It’s not the way that I would aspire to be. But then I think, I do really believe that part of our job is to equip them for the world. And we can’t make everything okay for them, we can’t take away all of their suffering. It’s not good for them," she said on <a href="http://blogs.babycenter.com/celebrities/06232012-gwyneth-paltrow-talks-parenting-fails-s-e-x/"><em>In Conversation with Amanda de Cadenet</em></a>.
"Every woman can make time — every woman — and you can do it with your baby in the room," she <a href="http://www.health.com/health/gallery/0,,20603375_5,00.html">said in 2010</a>. "There have been countless times where I've worked out with my kids crawling around all over the place. You just make it work, and if it's important to you, it'll be important to them."
"I do feel so guilty and, like, <em>What am I doing?</em> but I also want them to know work is really fun for me — 'Hey, look what I get to do!' As opposed to feeling like, <em>Oh, I'm a terrible mother</em>. Because that really just doesn't get you anywhere. It doesn't get them anywhere,'" she told Good Housekeeping.
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