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About: Elizabeth A. McKenzie

Elizabeth is a stay-at-home mother of three children, ages eight, six and three years. She lives in Boulder, Colorado with her husband, children, a dog and two cats. In her (very limited) spare time she likes to garden, hike, read mysteries and write. She has written three books for children and is usually covered in paint splatters. http://eamckenzie5.wix.com/thespunkybookworm

Recent Posts by Elizabeth A. McKenzie

Dazed and Distracted: My Epic Parenting Failure

Swimming Alone With Three

Swimming Alone With Three

It was a hot summer day here in Boulder, Colorado. The sunscreen was flowing, the grown-ups were sweating and pools everywhere were filled with children and parents enjoying summer vacation.  My friend Jen invited us to join her and several other mommy friends and their varying numbers of offspring at her neighborhood pool. Lauren was seven and swimming independently, Kate was five and swimming underwater quite well—as long as she could either stand to come up for air or if there was an adult nearby who she could use as island. Fear as a life—preserving instinct was not present. Cooper, was still a cloth diaper-wearing two-year old, with very blond hair and a big belly poking out from under his sun shirt.

The number of children, ranging in ages from birth to seven years, made for a noisy, chaotic event. The air was punctuated by … Read More

Sleep Training and Different Strokes for Different Folks

The blog I posted last week about potty training led to some interesting discussions, especially on whether or not the fact that toddlers are training later today means we are doing things better or worse than we did 100 years ago. To be honest, I don’t have strong opinions on the matter. My kids did not potty train especially early and at four, Cooper still has accidents at school when he is distracted or too shy to tell a teacher that he needs to go. I am just as busy and on-the-go as any mom is today so the observations I made were based on my own experiences as well as those of my parent-friends who are also busy and potty-training. However, one of the reasons why children may have been trained earlier a century ago is because all children were cloth diapered and all diapers had to Read More

Why Are Babies Potty-Training Later?

Having three children, now (thankfully) all out of diapers, I’ve researched and written on the subject. One thing I was surprised to learn was that children today are potty-training much later than they were 50 and even 100 years ago. With technology, the internet and the advances in medicine and science, it’s almost hard to comprehend that potty-training has actually regressed. We’re so used to faster-better-new-and-improved-at-your-fingertips-millisecond EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME in 2015, that it’s completely contrary to all of the progress we’ve made in other areas. Why is this? I did some more research and a little brainstorming.

After a quick Google search, I found and enjoyed reading: A History of Potty Training. The invention of disposable diapers has actually negatively impacted how quickly children potty train—if you are using age as a measure. According to PottyTrainingConcepts.com:

  • In the 1950s, almost a 100% of children wore cloth diapers
Read More

One and Done: One Child Families

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More and more of our friends these days are having only one child. It’s interesting to hear them talk about their experience, read blogs on the subject and to hear parents of two or more children weigh in (whether or not it is their place to do so). Having three myself, I can tell you that life is crazy. In fact, life was crazy with two and then along came Cooper. Sometimes I feel like I am so busy caring for my children that I don’t have time to enjoy them and I sometimes I secretly envy “the One and Done” crowd.

You may have heard parents of more than one child talk about how they wanted their first child to have a playmate. The “playmate phase” of childhood does not begin, of course, until both children are older than toddlers. Toddlers meeting a newborn sibling for the first … Read More

Little Girls and Pierced Ears

Kate turns seven next week. She’s asked to get her ears pierced so we’re going to head to the mall the day before her party that way she’ll be able to show off her earrings to her friends.

I got my ears pierced at the ripe old age of eight back when you had to go to a doctor’s office to have it done. I don’t remember my parents ever saying “You can’t get your ears pierced until you are X years old.” I didn’t even ask until I turned eight and by then it was fine. I’ll never forget sitting on the examining table, kicking my legs and waiting impatiently for the nurse. The only problem was this: the clinic only had one piercing gun.

I got one ear pierced and it hurt and the gun made a loud snapping noise. I freaked out Read More

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