Tag Archives: relationships

Saw It, But Didn’t See It

25 Sep

A couple of weeks ago I raised a concern about a sign that hung in Nordstrom’s children’s department which read “Boys Stink.”  The support from readers of this blog was fantastic, and I want to thank you all for lending your voice to this matter. I have to say, though, that the amazing response from readers was matched by an equally amazing response from Nordstrom. The Manager of the Scottsdale store removed her store’s signs, contacted the corporate office and PR departments of other stores featuring the same layout and design to encourage them to do the same, AND personally called all the folks that contacted her directly to say the signs were down and apologized for the poor judgment. In addition to the local Manager’s efforts, the Director of Visual Merchandising sent personal emails of the same tone to all of the people who contacted corporate about the signs.

In a phone conversation with a friend of mine, the Manager expressed gratitude for having this issue brought to her attention. She acknowledged that there really was nothing cute about a sign reading “Boys Stink” and regretted that it had gone up in the first place. And then she said something that I think we can all relate to,

“I saw it, but I didn’t really see it. You know?”

Yeah, I do know.

image credit: “Vintage Illustrated Poem” on eBay
What Are Little Boys Made Of?

How many times have we recited nursery rhymes that imply the superiority of one sex over the other? How many times have we heard chants that suggest some battle between the sexes? How many times have we read logos on shirts or titles on books that involve the degradation of one sex by the other?

image credit: zazzle.com

*  In the words of my friend Melissa Wardy of Pigtail Pals and Ballcap Buddies, “You don’t raise girls up by breaking boys down.”  Is there really a winner when the advancement of one means the decline of the other? The battle of the sexes is a zero-sum game, but since the beginning of time we’ve pitted one sex against the other while all evidence points to the fact that this is indeed not helpful to anyone.

Don’t we want kids to get along and respect each other? Isn’t that what we expect them to do as adults? The “boys versus girls” messaging is so prevalent, it is easy to see how many of us have become desensitized to it.  Yet, if we open our eyes to it, it’s plain to see how it is eroding relationships between boys and girls/ men and women and we need to ask ourselves “Why?”

I never doubted that Nordstrom would remove the “Boys Stink” signs from their stores, but I think what happened was a bit more than a store responding to “offended” customers by taking down some plaques. I like to think we helped a big corporation to SEE something. And for this I thank you!

Advertisements

It’Sugar

8 May

As I gear up for my 8th summer here in Phoenix, I’m reminded of a couple of lessons I’ve learned over the years that have helped me cope with the heat: 1) a shady parking spot is worth the extra walking and 2) you can enjoy the outdoors as long as there’s water. With the latter lesson in mind, I recently took my kids to play in the splash pad at a nearby outdoor mall. If you are unfamiliar with “splash pads,” they’re basically play areas where kids can run through water fountains without feeling embarrassed that your kids are running through a water fountain. They’re designed for kids, and in Arizona, one would think that having a business located right in front of a splash pad would be prime real estate. Especially if your target market includes kids, like for instance if you’re selling candy….

Continue reading

Daddy-Daughters Weekend

21 Feb

This past weekend I went on my first solo trip to Chicago since having kids. Traveling alone for the first time in six years made coach feel like First Class! A little People magazine, a good book, a nap…It was glorious! And as it turns out, Dad and the daughters had a pretty glorious weekend too! Continue reading

February Book Salute: Chrysanthemum

7 Feb

I love how authentic literature allows us to explore challenging topics and inspires conversations. There are so many amazing books out there that touch on elements critical to enhancing relational skills among boys and girls – issues at the heart of the Sanford Harmony Program. Beginning today, the first Tuesday of every month will be dedicated to these wonderful and useful pieces of literature ranging from children’s fiction to adult non-fiction. These monthly book posts are not intended to be book reviews, but rather “shout –outs” to fine works that provide opportunities to think and talk about matters that contribute to bringing boys and girls together and promoting healthy relationships. Continue reading

The Birthday Dilemma

2 Feb

My five-year old was recently invited to her first girls only birthday party. It was a fairy themed party on a beautiful, warm Sunday, and everyone had a really nice time. The kids all got wings when they arrived and ran around outside in-between cake and craft projects. It was a sweet and wholesome party – but, half the class was excluded.

Norms and Expectation (Solutions 7 & 8)

26 Oct

Whether it’s in school, the workplace, within the community as a whole or at home in a marriage, the world is coed, and boys and girls would benefit from strengthening their skills to work and communicate together. But because boys and girls socialize each other in such different ways, we face a challenge in enhancing these skills. We must figure out ways to bring them together and confront the norms they have come to accept. Which brings me to today’s solutions (yep – it’s a combo again. It may be a cop out, but it really was difficult to separate the two)….Solution 7: Normalize the Boy-Girl Friendship and Solution 8: Communicate Expectations. 

What do our kids think about friendships between boys and girls? Do they view these relationships in the same way they do those between their same-sex friends? Continue reading

Discover Common Ground (Solution 4)

21 Oct

Okay, here we go. Day 4…..Solution 4: Discover Common Ground

 It’s kind of getting late in the day, and I’m rushing to get this post up, but I have a good explanation for my procrastination. I spent the morning at the Arizona Head Start Association’s Mental Health Symposium, presenting a workshop on Bringing Boys and Girls Together in the Early Childhood Setting. See…my excuse is relevant. Continue reading

Cooperate and Collaborate (Solution 3)

20 Oct

Woohoo – day 3! I’d be lying if I said this wasn’t stressing me out, but I’m hoping that sharing this top ten solutions list in ten days will prove useful and interesting. Just as a quick recap, day 1 was dedicated to intentionally bringing boys and girls together, and day 2 focused on fun. Today’s solution adds a third layer onto this mission of bringing boys and girls together in ways that will enhance relationships…..Solution 3: Cooperate and Collaborate. Continue reading

Have Fun (Solution 2)

19 Oct

Day 2 of 10! Are you back? Just joining me? Well, I’m happy you’re here, and incidentally, being “happy” has everything to do with today’s post…Solution 2: Have Fun! Continue reading

Life Is Coed

23 Sep

Mothers and Sons

Continue reading

%d bloggers like this: