We need better books. (You probably do, too.)

Due to the ongoing/never-ending state of the world and my recent foray into #kidsbookstagram, I’ve been taking a MUCH closer look at the collection of books I have amassed for my children. In that looking, and to my shame, I have noticed something.⁣

The majority of our collection gets a FAILING grade on diversity and inclusion.⁣

I could blame this on the fact that 95% of the books we own are second hand. Furthermore, 90% have come from thrift stores like Value Village and Talize. In those instances, you pretty much get what you get. But, for the other 5% I purchased second-hand online, the same cannot be said.⁣

What it truly boils down to is this, however:⁣

I come to this realization in a position of privilege.⁣

As a white person, I’ve never had to sit down and ponder if there were enough books in our collection that represent us.⁣

I’ve never had to purposefully purchase or borrow books that represent us.⁣

White people hold this position of power.⁣

We are already in every book of nearly every type — to the point of over-saturation.⁣

People of differing colour, beliefs, abilities, sex, gender, sexual orientations – are not.⁣

All of this were things I already knew. But, did knowing it change or effect my children’s book collection? Nope.⁣

‘Cause as a white person, these are all taken for granted luxuries of our hegemonic identity.⁣

My beliefs in a socially justice world may be strong, and I have been strongly educated as such (thanks, @douglascollege and @capilanou) but I still have so so SO much more work to do — both on myself, and in the raising of my children. ⁣Part of this is reexamining the books we own, the books were read, and the conversations that come from these books.⁣

I humbly accept this moment of learning, and am committed to making a change.

Thanks, @nwplibrary, in helping me take a first step forward today.⁣

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Asking the REAL questions.

Here are the questions I asked myself as I attempted to make sense of this gong show of a board book collection:

  • Why do we own this many board books? W H Y?⁣
  • You know you can’t even fit all the ones we own on this shelf and you should probably stop buying them, yeah?⁣
  • Where the hell is our Gruffalo book?! I guess I’ll have to get another. ⁣
  • You know what makes for great photos, Sarah? A black bookshelf in a hallway that has dungeness lighting AND it’s a dark + dreary night. Bravo. ⁣
  • E-readers are so much easier to sort. How old can O be before he starts using one?⁣
  • Wait. No. Never. I have to have a reason to keep buying him and M pretty books for all of eternity. RIGHT?!⁣
  • None of how you’re organizing this makes sense, I hope you know. Do you?⁣
  • Why do we still own Rainbow Fish? Donate that nonsense.⁣
  • You didn’t buy “such and such” when you were out thrifting last. Why? Next time, next time. ⁣
  • Have you ever heard of a damn library, woman?!⁣

I am a mess. No lie.

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Where I have arrived to while #stayinghome.

  • Wearing a purse feels like a strange phenomenon of our society that has absolutely no bearing on reality.
  • Watching people gather in groups on *insert whatever TV series I’m bingeing* make me feel MOST worried for them.
  • I measure my gas mileage in terms of how many weeks per tank. I’m almost at four!
  • The once a week grocery run is actually kind of *exciting*.
  • My slacky home clothes are legitimately in shock with how much I’m using them, and are kindly responding by falling apart. I look *hot*.
  • The concept of doing my hair can fuck right off for the rest of eternity.
  • I nap everyday while my kid naps and I legitimately have no idea how I will function without said nap once the world goes back to normal. I’m gonna be SO screwed.
  • The lack of friends I have that I actually hang out with has yet to make this feel all that different, lol.
  • These words: “we can’t, it’s closed” have magically transformed my kid into: 1) being able to calmly stay at home ALL day while not really “going” anywhere and 2) into being a CHAMPION of long walks (as opposed to playgrounds)… When before he would have lost his *shit* on me about both.

These are *fascinating* times.

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Is this how mom’s workout?

Introducing my, “If you want to watch TV, you’ve gotta walk while you do it” corner. This has also been paired with making better choices with what I eat. I’m trying to move more and eat smarter. I’m 8 weeks in.⠀

I’m not doing this to purposely diet or loose a ton of weight (though it wouldn’t hurt), but to find a balance. To feel better internally. To live longer for my kid. To not want to die when I have to walk up the steps at work. (Note: it’s helping!). ⠀

Pairing an iPad to the treadmill has helped make it a pretty flawless experience for me, and that’s why I’m posting this. A lot of the time I forget that I’m exercising, even while trying to keep a brisk pace. As a result I exercise more, I watch less TV (‘cause let’s be real), and I read more outside of it. ⠀

But, I now need from you guys suggestions of *REALLY AMAZINGLY GOOD* shows to treadmill-binge on Netflix as I’m about to run out of series I can count on. So, lay ‘em on me! Though nothing too scary (I’m a wuss) or funny, cause I about killed myself laughing by almost falling off the treadmill when watching the last season of Orange is the New Black. Whoops.

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Things I’m “really” good at.

  • Asking for advice on a mom’s group about how to make something better, get lots of good advice, but fail to follow ANY of said advice ’cause who the hell has time for that. WHO.
  • Loving my friends terribly from afar but never ever reaching out to tell them ’cause dear god that’s way too much effort but I really do love them REALLY.
  • Hating making lunches for the next day. I am good at hating. Like SUPER good.
  • Appearing as a calm, collected and rational human being to the parents/child care providers I interact with at work while my inside HAS ABSOLUTELY NO FREAKIN’ IDEA WHERE HER BRAIN EVEN IS AND WHEN IT EXACTLY LEFT.
  • Accepting the fact that my kid’s favourite pair of socks are grey ones that 1) say Thursday one them, 2) have snowmen on them, and 3) are referred to by him as his Baby Beluga socks AND DON’T YOU DARE QUESTION IT, MOMMA.
  • Postponing trying to find new/easy/no cook/no bake lunch ideas (YES, THIS IS SOMETHING I’M *STILL* WORKING ON [/SOB]) and instead posting shit like this on FB. I hate you, Pinterest. For life.
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