Wednesday, April 24, 2013

In the World of Women

Last week, I accompanied Lainey on a field trip, an exciting adventure that involved more firsts—specifically, a school bus ride and a couple hours of her semi ignoring me while she focused on people who were, for the moment, more important—her friends. I watched as my daughter confidently marched several strides in front of me and the other mamas, her arms linked in friendship with the little girls she talks about every afternoon when we pick her up. They sang songs, they laughed, they set up play dates without asking and told us when they were happening. If I squinted my eyes just right, I caught a glimpse of the future—teenagers, hand in hand, textin’ and talkin’.

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I was careful to make sure every girl felt included in our group—that if two held hands, the other two knew they were welcome to join. I know you’ve got to let little girls work some of these things out on their own, but I like an excuse to bring out my inner Kumbaya. Someone’s crying, my Lord? Oh, hell naw!

That little line-up of girls last week, as young and innocent as it was, was a perfect example of friendship. They shared their Oreos at lunch. They made up silly words to elicit a good laugh. They passed on their ideas. They held hands.

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I hope it stays this way. I mean, I’ve been warned that it gets so much worse with girls. Since Lainey started kindergarten, I’ve heard statements of doom regarding what lies ahead for any girl entering the world of other girls. “Oh, she’s going to school? Get ready for the mean girls,” I’ve been advised. Without even thinking about it, I feel myself reflexively tensing up, ready to protect, anxious to prepare my girls for this world of meanness—to arm them from these so-called “catty bitches.”

Oh, to have a nickel for every time someone’s told me that girls are mean. The thing is, I’m a girl. And I’m tired of this collective statement about girls and women and the cloud of meanness that hangs above them when I know so many women who prove this to be untrue. I’m not a catty bitch. And neither are the women I know and love.

There’s no doubt my girls will encounter mean girls in life, and I’d be fooling myself to think I won’t soon experience the mother-of-daughters rite of passage of consoling a crying girl who felt the sting of hurtful words. We’ve all been there. And perhaps, at some time in life, we've been the one to sting too.  But focusing on this meanness and using it to generalize this powerful world of femininity does nothing to empower my daughters and teach them what I know to be true—that women are amazing. And when they connect to support each other, when they open themselves up to learn from each other, when they take opportunities to celebrate each other’s unique contributions, a powerful force is unleashed—a motivating drive to move forward…together.

I’ve found this to be so true in my own life, specifically lately in the world of writing and blogging and social media which is often (mis)construed as a microcosm of competition—a veritable breeding ground for mean girls, if you will. If that’s what you seek to find, then yes—you’ll find it. But let me tell you about a far more powerful force that dwells within this crazy thing we call the Internet. It’s the force of Empowering Women, and I’ve met them. I’m meeting them. They come with different ideas, they come with respect, they come with passion, creativity and the desire to see each other succeed because they know that if one succeeds, we all succeed. After all, we’re on the same team. And while we don’t necessarily agree on all issues or practice the same politics, parent the same way or write about similar topics, we understand what’s most important—that we belong to each other; that two voices are louder than one. Because of this, the great community of powerful women’s voices (that’s you and you and you) expands. And because of this, I can focus my parenting guidance not in safeguarding my daughters from mean girls but in a far more efficient use of energy—priming them to be supportive, kind women who seek opportunities to connect and relate with each other.

I don’t know exactly how to teach this to my girls, but I do know that the best way to teach anything is to live it. My girls will see me embrace women with love. They will hear me talk about friends with kindness. They will watch me support, applaud, listen and learn; and through these experiences, I know they will inherit the tools they need to embrace women in their own lives. We need each other.

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Middle school might still be several years away for my girls, but there are plenty of opportunities in the meantime to ready them for the world that awaits. I will teach my daughters that the world is full of amazing, supportive women. And if it feels at times that those women are hard to find, I will tell them to look within themselves. Be that girl, always.

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She is powerful and she is strong.
We are powerful and we are strong.

162 comments:

Tiffany said...

Those girls are beautiful and I can't wait until my daughter finds friends to love.

Ashley said...

Love.

Maria said...

Oh, Amen sistah!! What wise words.
Your girls are blessed beyond measure & your sons have the perfect role model in Brett. I've watched a little girl enter kindergarten~she's now in third grade with a slew of girlfriends, banded together as they navigate the world.

Chasing Hazel said...

I think it is so important to know that the "mean girls" exist. It's important to equip our children with the tools they need to be strong, be themselves and be confident doing so.

I LOVE your idea about being the woman you want them to become. I try so hard to be a good example for my girl even if she is only 1. I try to be a good citizen and a compassionate person for my nieces and nephews. Lead by example. I love your words and I love that you live by your word.

Women are amazing!!! The internet has introduced me to so many wonderful people, family really. Watching children grow through IG, seriously, could anything be more perfect!!! Thanks again Kelle for you honesty.

Margared Mead said...

Love love love this post! xx MT

amomlikeme.com said...

So truthful! Love!

Love is all you need said...

Beautiful post. Go team girls!

Cathy K. said...

I spy a rainbow on the sand! Do you see it?

lynxymama said...

i really really needed this.

i am missing my "net." they are all moving away and away and away, thank goodness for the internets!!

Maria said...

I've been a reading fool lately and it keeps coming back to this...."be the woman you want your girls to be!" We can't expect them to be kind if we are not behaving the same way. "Lasting lessons are caught, not taught!" That was from The Power of A Positive Mom by Karol Ladd

Alisha said...

My daughter entered kindergarten this year. I worried (too often) about the "mean girls." on the second day of school, as she got on the bus she yelled back to me "I'm ready to be the one Mommy!" she left and I had NO clue what that even meant until I asked her when she came home. She said casually "oh that is our schools motto this year! They taught us to always 'be the one' that stands up for your friends or does the nice thing." LOVE!!!

Rachel @ Existation said...

That last photo of Nella is ah-maaaaaay-zing.

Janel said...

That last photo of Nella I think is my most favorite photo ever of her....she is so so gorgeous! I adore her"

Susan Martin said...

After all, we’re on the same team.
.... the best way to teach anything is to live it. WE ARE POWERFUL AND WE ARE STRONG.
Kelle Hampton, YOU are a rock star!

Marisa said...

Beautiful and a recall to those of us who are haunted by our not so fond memories. Although I know my girls will not go through this life unscathed, let it not be because of my wounds, my scars. We need each other. Life is pretty dang dismal without companions and support.
Thanks for tackling the hard stuff.

Karen Karnes said...

Why are mean girls mean? A defense mechanism I imagine. Something inside is sad, fearful, uncertain, lonely, misguided, hurt . . . broken in some way. Maybe the mean girl isn't loved by the folks who should love her. Maybe the mean girl is abused by folks she should be able to trust. Maybe the mean girl doesn't know right from wrong because nobody bothered to teach her. Maybe the mean girl is mean because she sees the world around her as a very scary place. . . a place where she doesn't quite fit for some reason. Why do little girls learn to hate their bodies? Question their ability to reason? Doubt who they are and why they are here? Give up their dreams and goals? Why do little girls learn how to be mean in the first place? Because someone in their life taught them to hate. . . hate themselves. With kindness and understanding, I believe that mean girls can be taught to love. . . love themselves. And when they learn to do that? They will be empowered. Meanness isn't needed when one knows how to love herself and feels empowered.

Deb @ home life simplified said...

As the mother of 2 girls (8 1/2 and almost 10) we have been through this a bit - my older one has suffered greatly, but has learned through the process the lesson I want her most to learn - surround yourself with those that lift you up - i taught her that when girls are running away from you (even though they say they are your friends) do not chase them - let them go and you can find other people who will run TO you instead!

With blogging- i know there is the competitive and bitchy side, but i love the "lifting you up" side and love to move us all forward! Thanks to inspiration from Jeanne Oliver I took up her challenge to promote other people's work and know that it spreads from there...as someone commented on my post - bloggers are one of the few groups of people who promote their competitors - i agree! http://www.homelifesimplified.com.au/be-inspired-find-community-stretch-and-grow/

melissa.rodgers said...

beautiful post kelle! just what I needed to read as a mid-week refresher! thank you for sharing your world with us!

Lori said...

I have three daughters and I can honestly say we never hit the "bad" years. They were/are a joy and yes they had sisterly fights over clothes and the cell phone I made them share (twins) after they got their driver's license. They are amazing women as well and have found life long girl friends at every stage of their lives. People ask me how... I always say, "We gave them Christ in their life, a community that had the same values as we did (outside support they listen to sometimes more than Mom and Dad) and we grew as they did (with our parenting) No helicopter for us we just let them fly.

Aimee LH said...

Amen sistah! Love it!

Mary Catherine said...

This is beautiful. Although I don't speak up much, I'm so proud to consider myself a part of this community of genuinely kind and supportive people.

Lindsey said...

Oh, I love this. You are so right: we teach by what we live. And I couldn't agree with you more about how extraordinary and positive women are. I've certainly experienced meanness myself, and my daughter at 10, has had her share of tears over someone else excluding her or being mean, but I choose to focus on the positive. And I hope she is never, ever the one who wounds. I think often of this quote by Elizabeth Berg, which reminds me most of all of the way my mother and two of her three best friends hunkered down to walk with their fourth best friend through cancer and, ultimately, to death at 49. It was an extremely powerful example for me to witness, as a young woman, and I've never forgotten it.

“Women do not leave situations like this; we push up our sleeves, lean in closer, and say, “What do you need? Tell me what you need and by God I will do it.” I believe that the souls of women flatten and anchor themselves in times of adversity, lay in for the stay.” – Elizabeth Berg

Megan D said...

Beautifully written! Love how you said this. So, so true!

Elisa said...

This is beautiful

Tristan Schlegel said...

You just have a way of saying things I want to say but don't have the words for! (Same with your faith post!)

I feel this same way about girls and being a teacher. People always say 'girls are mean.' But the thing is that they aren't. And I want my future kids, students, sisters, nieces, every girl...to see that and find those women who are truly good and kind and wonderful. Thanks for this!

Mandi Wolfswinkel said...

I love this. My oldest is in 3rd grade and we are starting to hit a patch where we have encountered some of the "mean" girls. Being that she is the oldest, I have such a hard time giving her advice. I'm more eloquent in my writing than I am coming up with spontaneous advice. I'd love to hear how others handle or have handled this at one point or another. I always look forward to coming back here day after day after day. Thank you for making me feel like I'm part of this community, even if it is only virtual. :)

Kelly said...

I love this post! As a mom to two girls (and another one due in July) I worry about the future when my daughters encounter "mean girls". I know there will be heartache and hurt feelings, but I pray they always remain the sweet girls they are through it all. I plan to tell them when they start school that I want them to do their best and work hard, but what will make me most proud is by them being kind and always being a good friend.

Rosie Keisha said...

What a beautiful post and philosophy to teach your children. Yes, girls can be terribly catty, jealous and bullies. So can grown women as we have seen from some of the hateful, jealous posts appearing lately on your blog. The worst thing is to see your child hurt...either emotionally or physically. I think any child that is raised by a strong, loving mother such as yourself will learn the coping skills to not only stand up for herself but to be kind and gentle with others. That is a beautiful gift you can pass on. As usual..gorgeous photos!

Rachael said...

Absolutely. I am so sick of the "did you see what so and so did" bs. Enough with the judgement, let's focus on the positives. Great post.

Andrea said...

YES!! Better yet... HELL YES!

I'll be honest Kelle -- I grew up in a small, tight-knit environment filled with mean girls, and sometimes I was the mean girl. Because I didn't know... honestly, I didn't know ... that there was something better out there.

As an adult, I've finally found good and loving and true friendships with other women, and it is such a precious gift!

I do find myself feeling anxious for my daughter sometimes ... I'm scared she'll be the victim AND I'm scared she might end up being the bully. I'm scared sometimes that I won't be able to get through to her, to convince her that women can be amazing to one another.

My husband thinks I'm nuts for even worrying about it!

Marisa M said...

You write beautifully. I love this post, it's so inspiring.

Sarah said...

amen sister. i teach 8th grade and I see some wonderful girls and always try to praise them as well as model it, but I find sometimes it is so hard as a mother and I have to temper myself and remind myself to live it. Just tonight, Anna Cate (7) came home and told me about a girl on the bus who was mean to her and said she doesn't believe in Santa Claus and doesn't believe Anna Cate that she has two birds at home. a part of me wants to print out a picture of her with the birds to say "in your face" but rather I made myself say, "you know Anna Cate, that little girl might not be able to imagine someone who would give her birds for her birthday so let's not be mean and rub it in." This post couldn't have come at a better time. oh and I have to share what a friend said with kids older than ours, "you will never regret taking the high road." xoxo

Miggy said...
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Miggy said...

I can only hope my girls run into your girls in that great big world out there.

This was great. I sometimes think that when we talk about an issue over and over again we are not finding the solution, but perpetuation the problem. If we constantly tell ourselves and each other how mean and catty we are--we believe it! We live it! I personally feel this message is not that true in my life, but I've heard it so much I believe it. Sure it's happened, but I think the women who have got my back far outweigh the ones who have tried to take me down... it's not even close.

Fighting these stereotypes with love is always the best answer. Way to fight back sista.

Detox Jubilee said...

Your daughter is going to have a shitload of problems with mean girls if you keep dressing her in fugly clothes from 1993. Do you not fucking look around at her classmates and think that you dress your kid like a grandma compared to them?
Hopefully you'll cut the cord someday and treat her like a person rather than a stage prop.

Alisa said...

The statement "girls are mean" is so wrong. Because you know what. Boys are mean also. There is a percentage of all kids at school who are mean. Who bully. Who don't treat their friends the best.

My son has been more bullied than his younger sister. And boy golly I have wiped some tears from her face after mean words hurt her feelings.

Boys are just as mean as girls.

It isn't about the sex of the child but instead often something in their story that makes them angry, sad or mean.

My son recently tried to help the boy who has been bullying him and got a chair around the face for it. MEAN. From a boy.

I think as mums we need to nurture kindness and show our kids how to be a good friend. And hope that as they travel on down the line they are a good friend to others and find good friends of their own.

I hope your sweet firl finds a good group of friends at school to help her feel secure and protected.

xoxo

Amy said...

Wonderfully said. Thank you for writing this.

priest's wife said...

I love this post! and yes...we need to let our kids discover kindness naturally...but I usually help it along

My oldest two are almost 14 and 13 (girls!)...we homeschool, so there ARE less issues, but they do ballet- so they experience meanness a LOT...and they are learning to deal with it

Nicola said...

Oh man do I feel this, 3 days in to The Breakup and my girlfriends are my everything right now.

There's no denying there are mean girls, but there's a wonderful art to finding your tribe, gravitating towards your people, looking for the love. And with the home environment you've created, I have no doubt those girls will pretty easily recognise the love wherever it resides

ps I'm now blogging, a little (and ironically timed) gratitude project mindfulgrateful.blogspot.com

Jessica Orlowicz said...

I have four daughter. My oldest two, twins, are going into Middle School next year. I'm weak with fear, but know that this is something they'll have to go through to be stronger in the long run. Your post is sweet <3

Nicolette Gawthrop said...

Oh mama. More heart, pouring onto the page- talkin straight to my own.

Hugs,
Nico

Unknown said...

When you learn to not give a shit what others think about you, life is a wonderful place. My daughter is going to be the big 13 on sunday. She is a wonderful young lady and I have never heard the tern mean girls in real life. Sure some people weren't raised right, but the majority of girls i know are amazing.

Lorin said...

Life with my daughters has been beautiful in soo many ways. I would hear stories from other Mothers or Fathers of the teen years & just cringe.
Somehow we had escaped all the insanity, lol...

I've always always always lived by that same motto, of "being the woman I want my daughters to be..."
And then suddenly it all hit with tornado like force.

At ages 17 & 19.
I thought we were out of the woods, so to speak.
Depression hit the youngest which opened doors to unimaginable things. I looked around just the other day and thought to myself, "This is NOT my life!"

And for as much as I know, everything happens for a reason, it sure is tough getting to that reason.
I've learned things I never expected to learn, but I can tell you one thing, Teens today are in SCARY places.
I found out thru our family therapist, that "Cutting" is a trend in Teen girls! ! My God.

I've been in shock mode ever since. Can you imagine the hurt & pain that goes behind a beautiful young girl cutting her body? The Dr. says that girls use cutting to release pain.

And Teens are EXPERTS at hiding it.
Just when you think you have the best relationship in the world, you find out your daughter is a pro at hiding the pain. That her self esteem is far lower than you have ever been witness to & your family goes from what you consider "your normal" to the stuff you have only read about.

Still shaking my head in disbelief....
There's soo much more I would love to say, need to say, etc. I would give anything to go back to my 3 being the ages of your 3 again...
Enjoy it. Embrace it & prepare for the ride...

Jillian22 said...

I'm just echoing all of the amazing women up above, but yes- wonderful, wonderful post Kelle. I feel this amazing community through the blogging/writing world and it gives me hope in the world. We are strong, we are united, and we belong to each other!

robin said...

Love the post! So agree with you! Enjoyed all your pics but think the last two are absolutely gorgeous!!

Janita said...

"And if it feels at times that those women are hard to find, I will tell them to look within themselves. Be that girl, always." Word, big bird. You said it beautifully. xo

Karol said...

As a mother to three daughters and four sons I can tell you that girls don't have to be mean girls. They will encounter them, yes, but they don't have to be them.

My oldest is 20 and I also have a 17 year old. They are beautiful and kind. The type of girls who, according to their teachers, will take a stand for those who are hurting or mistreated.

I can honestly say that I didn't necessarily do anything to teach them not to be mean girls. However, the fact that they have 3 siblings with special needs, one with an extra 21st chromosome, has taught them much about compassion and acceptance.

There is no need to be discouraged. Just teach them, instill in them the confidence that they are strong and beautiful. That everyone is special and unique, exactly they way that God formed us.

You're gonna love raising teenaged girls.

melissa said...

Oh my word, I just about balled my eyeballs out. Reading this whole thing, not really convinced the good outweighs the bad (ironically, I used to be so positive)...and then you said, "And if it feels at times that those women are hard to find, I will tell them to look within themselves. Be that girl, always."
IT must start within, no matter what.
Thank you. You move me a little closer to where I need to be, who I need to be, and who I AM.
LOVE from Tejas,
Melissa

Happiness is... said...

Amen Sister!

Women can be mean and destructive, but some of the best people I know are women. And the support can be deep and amazing.

Hopefully we can all arm our children, boys and girls, with the right tools. And lead by the best example.

Sarah Ochoa said...

yes, yes, and and yes. Thank you. I have so many amazing, wonderful friends, and 3 amazing, wonderful, supportive sisters. We can choose to be that.
love,
Sarah

Leah said...

Lovely thoughts and photos... That last one of Nella -- Be still my heart. I think it's my favorite picture. Ever. :)

LeeLee Guerre said...
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LeeLee Guerre said...
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Ang said...

detox jubilee... such a horrible, horrible, nasty, unnecessary comment!!!!! you're a mean individual. her taste in clothes for HER daughter is being attacked??? did you not read this beautiful post about acceptance and loving each other for their differences? this makes me so sad for you.... what do you care what kind of clothes her child wears?
take your nastiness elsewhere.

kelle, thank you so much for this post! have been dealing w/ "mommy competition" this week and its very discouraging. as a new mommy to a 2.5 yr old and a 7month old, all i need is to have others put doubts in my head about things i'm already uncertain about.
i posted on my FB a status that had the same tone that this post had.... lets love one another. quit tearing each other down! so not helpful.

Amy Kettle said...

Beautiful post. There are many amazing women out there. Unfortunately you get the bad apples, and I think we've all been hurt by women. But we all have such potential :)

Also I think you dress your kids beautifully.

Detox Jubilee said...

Ang,
Face it: Kelle's really setting her kids up to be teased (along with being kidnapped by perverts because she cares more about money and validation than the safety of her children). It's bad parenting. I really think that she should have had her kids taken away when she posted the nude photo of Nella. But, hey, I guess it brought Kelle more attention, so it was worth it...

afrenchamericanlife.com said...

Beautifully written. Thank you for this!

Donna O. said...

Somehow my daughter, Kelly, was able to avoid that whole "mean girl" business throughout middle and high school. It was there - I would hear some of the stories - but she just decided to stay friends with everyone and it worked out for her. I have to say that she is much nicer than I am (ha ha!), as I was much more into the gossip back in my day than she's ever been. Unfortunately, this year - her freshmen year at U of M - she went in blind and got a horribly mean and cold roommate. It would have ruined my year, had I been in her shoes and I have spent many nights worrying about it on her behalf. She felt bad that the girl didn't like her; she honestly wasn't used to feeling that way, but it did not, in any way, spoil her year. For that, I am grateful. She is strong, confident, kind and very compassionate and she was able to move around this situation and make some really close girlfriends; despite the nasty roommate. I told her it was a good lesson in learning to deal with people she might not necessarily pick as friends - something she may encounter in the working world some day - but, Ugh...it was tough! Our girls grow and learn and they will encounter tough times (and tough girls) even if they do everything right. Hopefully, they'll keep a positive outlook, take the high road and understand that this, too, shall pass. Loved the hand holding photos of the girls tonight. Wish I could go on just one more field trip with my girl. Think U of M has any field trips?!!

dressesandmesses said...

Love this! As one who had only brothers and guy friends growing up, it's something I'm discovering as a grown woman. My girlfriends are few, but they are powerful. And I treasure their friendships more than any I've ever had. Amen to what you said. Collectively, we are an incredible, powerful bunch!

Kelly said...

This is right up there as one of my favourite posts of yours Kelle. I have 2 girls myself - just a little older than Lainey and Nella - and there isn't a day that goes by that I worry I am not doing enough to make sure they don't become mean girls.
I want them to be strong and confident but also caring and respectful - it truly is a fine balance. And I worry that if I haven't mastered it yet then how can I be a role model to them? So thanks for sharing this and reminding me that I am not alone in the way I feel. That we are all on the same team...

Angela said...

I totally agree- within the world of blogging, I've been amazed by the creativity and plain AWESOMENESS of women! It boggles my mind, the way women can write, feel and make a difference. Hopefully we can raise our girls to know how to be a friend and to know how to be a leader...a world changer!

Eileen said...

This is the perfect antidote to the story about the Maryland sorority girl and how she treated her sorority sisters in her email. We need to empower our girls and dhow them that they can lead others by example. They can be good and kind and they should make good choices in all areas of life. As mothers we need to lead by example, show them how to be good to family and friends, how to have relationships based on love and respect and that they deserve to be treated well in their relationships. I could go on and on but I will get off my soapbox for tonight:)

Ana Anton Solanas said...

"There is only one way
to avoid criticism:
do nothing,
say nothing,
and be nothing."

Aristotle

I don't understand why some people chose to be hurtful.

But you know, you must be doing something, saying something and being something! In my opinion something good.

I love your blog, your stories and your photos.

Big hug!!

xx

Chot said...

I. Love. This. Post. Period. So true.

Brittnie said...

I love this post. So true. I esp love how you intend to encourage your girls to "be THAT girl" when she is not easily found. Love.

Sydney said...

Nice post!

As far as the negative comments I'm seeing when I try to leave you a compliment, I'm sorry you are having to deal with these disturbed individuals. Their trolling nature is sad and pathetic. Apparently when you take the time to create a positive blog and make the world a better place by advocating for a wonderful cause you will attract the negative trolls that have nothing better to do than to stalk your blog and take cowardly jabs at you (and I'm sure many others) from the safe anonymity of their computer keyboard. You really have to pity them. Can you imagine having nothing better to do? So sad.

You are a beautiful person. I love your style, your children are lovely and also have fantastic style, and you have a wonderful supporting husband. Life is good!!

Kyra B said...

Poignant, powerful, spot on, real and so well-written...Per usual. Your words and pictures make my heart smile and soar. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

Robyn Hering said...

Here's an idea, don't post pictures of your children's genitals on the intermewebz as easily accessed fodder for the mean girls. And as for inappropriate overly wordy prose spouting Pappa ... Well lets face it, mean girls don't have far to look for new and hurtful material

But seeing as you've done that already, make sure you help them through it by giving them coping strategies and teach them to be proud of themselves in their own right, not for the commodities you have turned them into on your personal quest for infamy

My House, My Garden said...

As the mother of a kindergarten girl, I totally am with you!! I really try to show her how to be inclusive with her friends and I am right on it if I ever see anyone being left out.

I really think all little girls are nice at heart. I've heard this said a million times and it's true: Hurting people hurt others.

When I see a girl that, perhaps, comes off as mean, I ask myself what's her real story? What is her home life like? Have other girls been mean to her and she has kicked in her self-defense mechanism?

Okay, I am done rambling! Lovely, lovely post!

Vikki


Unknown said...

yes!

Marlo said...

My little niece (who’s in the 2nd grade) gets stomach migraines when she is anxious. A few months ago – they came on strong and fierce but she wouldn’t explain why which was something new. Up until then she had always easily told her mama what was bothering her. Come to find out a little girl in her class had said “You better be my friend or I’ll kill you.” It was an interesting experience to deal with for her Mama. Deep down she knew the little girl wouldn’t really hurt her daughter (and probably didn’t even know what it really meant to kill someone) but at the same time it was an obvious bullying…. but then this tiny little second grader wanted so desperately to be friends that she had resorted to threats. The issue is still ongoing and it’s hard to figure out the best course of action for both kids involved.

Janet said...

"Someone’s crying, my Lord? Oh, hell naw! "-BEST EVER!!!! LOL That made my morning!

Annie said...

YES! Love this.

2busy said...

I love how you appreciate the moment but still glimpse into the future. Meanness is learned. Just make sure your girls are learning from you.

lynxymama said...

just for the record, kelle is not dressing lainey as a grandmother, it's a traditional mexican dancing dress. very beautiful, traditional, and classic dress.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ballet_Folklorico_de_Mexico

or

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Folk_dance_of_Mexico

if you're going to be a fashion critic, at least do some research before you make a comment.

Shannon {ava_caitlyn} said...

I just need to say that not every child will experience "mean girls" in school. The things you teach her, the people she surrounds herself with, and the way she handles it...those things matter. My teen has a great group of friends, she has chosen them based on values that they possess. We have not had the first problem drama, because she knows to stay away from it. You are a great Mama, just keep doing what you are doing.

Lisa said...

This blog post really resonated with me! I hate it when people generalize kids, or girls, or whoever, and tries to fit everyone in this little group (teens are going to be so hard to raise, watch out for the terrible twos, if your kids don't play sports they have missed out on life...). Seriously?? Let's just all get along and be happy! Each one of us is different, lets forget the pigeon holes please! Anyways..loved the post. :-) Lisa

Angela said...

This post made me smile so big, Kelle. I have a boy, but i think the same rings true for both sexes. One of my very favorite quotes is "What we ARE speaks so loudly that our children may not hear what we SAY." Be the love, be the compassion, be the strength, BE the example. <3

Morgan said...

Thank you thank you thank you! I am currently pregnant with my second girl and I am a self proclaimed girls girl. I love my friendships with other women. I have had so many people tell me they feel sorry for me and what is coming and it makes me cringe. Are we as women so self loathing that we cannot see the wonderful aspects of women and uniquely female relationships? I know that fights are inevitable as are hurt feelings, but I hate the expectation of mean girls.

I think this is the first time I have commented on your blog despite being a long time reader. Love your blog and your perspective!

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Katie Brackmann said...

This is amazing and I love every sentence. I'm getting ready to bring a little girl into the the world and this is something I've though a lot about, and this post is perfect - to show my Lady B that mean girls will always be there, but to celebrate the empowering women and strive to be one of them - I just love it.

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Elizabeth said...

As someone who is just now escaping the prime time for mean girls in high and middle school, I can say that the positive things mean girls have given me has greatly out weighed the tears and heart ache they have cause. in terms of friendship, mean girls show you who you real friends are in a time when some of the strongest friendships are being built. Let me tell you, nothing brings two middle schoolers closer then a common sting from a mean girl. Mean girls also helped my mom and I grow much closer. She always reminded me that it's okay to be hurt but instead of retaliation it is so important to focus on love and acceptance instead. Mean girls are a terrible thing to encounter but girl friends are also one of the world's greatest gifts. Some times you just have to focus on the good which I love that you did in this post! Totally made my day to read your words! As a college freshman let me just say you really are touching so many different times of women and bringing so many together! Thanks for sharing!

Adrienne Rachie Photography said...

Beautifully said!

B Gira said...

Thank you Kelle for your beautiful words. This is something we girls need to be reminded of on a regular basis.

Stephanie Steel said...

I love that you brought this up because, as a mommy blogger of girls, I have thought about these 'mean girl' situations. I remember in my early teen years how other girls seemed to latch on to ANY perceived weakness, including my clothing (we were poor, I wore WalMart clothing, the cheerleaders called me WalMart for years...). I wonder sometimes if the mean girls of our daughters' generation will ever use our blog content against our kids. Have you considered that in junior high/high school, Lainey might be targeted due to your popularity and the amount of information (some endearing, some embarassing) about her childhood that anyone can read? I know it's something I think about often, and I wondered if you have felt the same. For your girls it seems even more poignant due to your widespread fame and large audience. Can you help a sista-mahma out here? How do you cope? How do you comfort yourself? Are you preparing your daughters for the possibility of such encounters? I'd love your perspective, hopefully it could give me some peace.
Any of you other MAHMAs wanna chime in with thoughts here as well? How do we protect our kids while still chronicling their lives on the web? I think this is an important issue for our littles growing up in the age of the Internet.

MaryAnne Smyly Sabin said...

It's not just mean girls, it's mean kids. My daughter is incredibly sociable and in preschool, suffered zero problems with other children. Now in kindergarten, I'm happy to see that she's made a wonderful group of girlfriends who are all very sweet to each other. However, there are other children in her class that make me wonder what goes on in their home for them to think of such mean things. They range from one telling my daughter she wasn't cute that day to another one asking her why her "real" mom wasn't helping out in class (I'm not her biological mom) and why we had the same last name if I wasn't her "real" mom. She's not yet equipped with clever remarks and I don't want to have to equip her with such. I want her to think the world is full of wonderful people as long as possible. I wish more people raised their children to just embrace all people as they are and not feel the need to make other people feel bad, young or old.

Alicia Henderson said...

I LOVE your attitude and outlook on life. I love seeing the photos of Lainey, Nella and Baby Dash. They are so lucky to have you as a mother and you can see how much love there is within your household.

Thanks for being so positive, when there is so much negativity out there!

Moonstonemama said...

This really resonated with me! For the first time since middle school when I was ostracized by my group of girlfriends over a bunch of lies my "best friend" was spouting I finally have a group of women whom I call my friends. I've seen my daughter interact with their daughter's and I can see the good in the world through them.

Kmarie Jones said...

There is a balance always. I love that you saw that. The women in my life and the men have changed it mostly (As the broadway Wicked musical croons) "FOR GOOD":) However, I was bullied by one particular person for sharing the same name...over and over. When my daughter was in school I witnessed an unpopular girl who bullied and was isolated in grade one. So sad. So I bought this book:
http://www.amazon.ca/Little-Girls-Can-Mean-Bully-proof/dp/0312615523
And it was helpful and I tried to create a forum for all the mothers of the 8 girls in the class to meet three times a year. My parents did that when I was in Junior High and it cut bullying down to almost nothing because they all agreed on a similar curfew ect so that girls had less to compare about and their parents all knew the lines and expectations of other parents. Needless to say no one was interested in a forum. Our world is too busy and I ended up taking my daughter out because of the expectations and influences brought upon little girls ( talking about sex in grade one was a little much). Yet, there was so much beauty too and there still is. She has four very good friends and I think even if every little girl only has one good loyal friend ( be it girl or boy)- that is enough.
Women and men have the capacity to be fake or mean but we also have the capacity to be loving and honest. It simply starts with respect, understanding and continual loving conversations. Living our story and blooming where we are planted with whomever we are planted with. Good job for blooming in yours. Wishing you more honest reflections and loving friendships:)

Kayley Turner said...

This post spoke to me so loudly. I have always had a hard time finding those women that lift each other up and support each other rather than tearing each other down, but I think it is important to always exemplify what you want your friendship to look like. The more we go above and beyond for our friends, the more they want to do the same for us. It is hard to get past the hurtful things, but focusing on being the good naturally makes you a magnet for friends that do the same. I have really learned how to do this better in the last year and your blog and book have just encouraged me to work even harder at my friendships. You are such an inspiration in my life.

Ditto to all the comments about that last picture... Nella is so beautiful. I love Lainey's blue dress in the field trip pics too!

Kmarie Jones said...

To stephanie:
In a sort of attempt at answer to your question...I used to have a fairly big blog with numerous hits everyday...but then my family started to be judged and distant family that did not understand us fully found my blog and twisted my words against me...so finally with many tears I took my blog private with a few commentators whom I knew wanted to be along for the journey...Then I opened up a second new smaller public blog and I used fake names for the kiddos and minimal pictures...and if I did use pictures I made sure they would be pictures I would not mind up of myself if I was them...My kids are getting older (my eldest is ten) and I realized that personal info is hers and not mine to share although I have a right to mommy blog too. It is a fine line. So I blog about the personal angst or issues or personal parenting on my private space ( I still use alternative names even there) and on my public space I rarely talk about my kids unless it is pure or going to help someone else and not too infringing on anyone's rights as a human.
That is what worked for me. I don't have facebook or twitter and I keep our lives mostly off the net. My daughter has a private blog with trusted friends and family invited but she is not allowed facebook or twitter and will not ever probably have the desire as she is satisfied with her blog, email, phoning and being personal. Even now there is pressure and there is pressure for me to have these things too but I have found I have just as many friends without. In fact- my friends have to call me or skype me instead of facebook me and I love it. The ones who want to stay in touch- WILL.
I will send updates through email to those that really care about us every few months with some photos but this quiet life has led to very enriched personal relationships and a few good ones on the net too. That is all I need. I gave up my larger voice for the smaller needs of our family and it was so hard...and sometimes I wonder if it was totally right...but it worked after the transition.
Sometimes though we need people who can live with a forum like this. Kelle or you may have a different path than mine. It depends on your soul and the soul of your children and their friends and parents. I think if we listen to our inner soul and the inner souls of those around us we find the guidance for our journey.
We will make mistakes. We will change our minds. There are seasons too. I may go back to a bigger blog one day again and I do not regret many of my previous experiences...however I do not regret pulling the plug either. the fact is bullying is a cultural problem right now because of the internet and media and facebook. Suicide rates of teenagers and depression in kids is rising. We can not be ignorant of that. We can be the change we wish to see in the world. SOmetimes that involves stepping back or stepping forward. We have a part in creating this world and the one for our children. Even good intents can have some negative results.
I think you will find your own balance and it will feel right more often than it feels wrong:)
Good luck:)

Schlomo Feldman said...

This is such hypocritical bullshit. Kelle, you ARE a mean girl. I live in Naples and word on the street is that you talk shit about "The Net" behind their back. I guess that's why you haven't featured them on the blog...
And you make a living on trying to make others feel below you.
You're a bitch. A selfish, narcissistic, stage mom, bitch.

Kathy said...

I want to leave you with a armful of love, I hope enough to squash out the bullying comments. Just love. Love in gratitude for sharing your life, your thoughts, your own love with us. You nourish us with your words and lift us up to see the light. ♥

C said...

I find this whole post sorta annoying. To act like you yourself have never been a "Catty bitch" is just silly. We have ALL acted catty towards friends/family at some point in our lives. It's human nature. And this idea that if people aren't on board with what you say, and don't agree in totality they are "Trolls" or "hurting" is just sooooo nauseating. And in 100% honesty, I enjoy your blog at times but the first thing I noticed when I looked at this post was how much your poor daughter stuck out amongst her friends in that silly dress. For the love of god, put her in normal clothes and let her be a kid. That's the bottom line. You talk about parenting and mothering in such a beautiful way at times, but why not actually put it into practice and let your children be real children and not accessories to your blog/sponsors. It just makes me sad for them. But I suppose I am "hurting" for saying such.

chelle. said...

oh kelle. i love your sense of humour, you grechen weiner you.

ps) kids get bullied for a lot less than their mahma's dressing them in fucking ridiculous clothes. poor lainey. that kid is gonna hate you one day.

chelle. said...

oh and kelle's "fan girls"? calling kelle out on her shit doesn't equal bullying. get a fucking life of your own.

gwen said...

Yes,yes,yes. I have three girls and am always hearing this comment. Life can be tough no matter what and it can also be beautiful. I find there are so many more lovely people in this world than those that would tear you down. You keep on with your rainbows girl!!

Werdna Miths said...

Jesus Christ. I don't know why I found you interesting a few years ago, you know, prior to Nella's birth. Remember? Before you started pimping out your "littles" (side note: for FUCK'S SAKE, you sound like an idiot when you say that) for your fans?

I don't think you were a terrible person then (maybe just a slight attention whore), but I do now. Don't you get tired, Kelle? Carrying that camera around, interrupting your kids' playtime for a photo, dragging them out in the rain so you can post about how they got a cold on IG. Aren't you just tired?

I mean, let's get real, this blog is going to go downhill in another year, especially because all you do is exploit your children. Are you ready for people to forget who you are? Can you handle not having your fans comment on every picture you post, praising you for doing what billions of mothers do (better) everyday?
Your fan base is dwindling. I guess you're going to have to learn how to live without constant validation from strangers.

Suko said...

Beautiful post and pictures! Children learn by example, so you are right to model the behavior you want them to adopt. Being supportive of others is a wonderful way to be. :)

JenandAsh said...

I work in foster care for a private non-profit organization. We contract with local social services to provide foster care for mentally ill children. Some of the kids we work with will not make it in society, they will be incarcerated, institutionalized, homeless, etc. They are the toughest of the tough kids.

All of that is to say that I work in an office with 8 other women (and 1 poor guy). We support each other, we laugh and sometimes cry with each other. We made poorly timed and inappropriate jokes, and remind each other that when a case has gone bad, we have done the best we could.

We're a family, a dysfunctional one, but a family!

LW said...

Um, didn't you tell someone on Heidi's IG to #ptfd ('pipe the fuck down', for those who don't know internet speak) for asking her a question she didn't like? That's pretty damn catty.

Also, I find it kind of insulting that you say women need to support each other solely for being fellow women. I don't see people as their sex, I see them for who they are. I support people who kind, passionate, funny, and supportive of me as well. These are men AND women. I do not support those who are selfish, mean, self-absorbed, hypocritical, and these could be also men or women.

Also, yeah. I don't mean to kick a dead horse, but Lainey sticks out like a sore thumb among her friends. Please throw some Gap Kids shorts and t shirt on that kid.

Lizzy Marie said...

Loved this post! Could not have said it better! Love to you, Kelle!!!

JennyV said...

Beautiful as always Kelle. I have a 13 month old daughter and if I had a nickle for everytime someone told me to "just wait" until she is older...id be rich. I hate that people throw a negative spin on my precious babies future when all I hope for her is that she is happy and healthy and she treats others the way she wants to be treated. Amen to this post. I don't know you, know you...but I swear in another life we were besties ;)

JennyV said...

Wow, LW you are mean! So unnecessary...
Lainey is a beautiful little girl, she looks adorable in anything she wears...what kind of a person judges a little girls clothes?

Flora said...

Love it! And the photos are beautiful as always especially the first two.

Alicia D said...

As the mother of FOUR girls, I know the "warnings" all too well and I'm ashamed to admit that it is a big fear of mine. Reading your re-framing of what it means to have girls and BE a woman has transformed my thinking and my heart. I love this piece so much - it has changed my views, filled with me promise, and filled me with tears. My girls WILL be "that girl" and likes attract like. they will find those who nurture and support them, navigate a few sharks in the water, and turn out to be more than okay. THANK YOU for these amazing words :)

Betsy Cashen said...

I don't have kids yet and they aren't even in my immediate future, but this gives me hope that the world is not such a scary place to bring children into. I love reading your blog because you teach me how to be the mother I want to be for my future children. Thank you, Kelle.

Susan said...

I did like this post. I agree with comments above about a happy balance. You certainly don't need to concentrate and only talk about the mean kids/adults but you must talk about them because they do exist. And I don't like saying one sex is meaner than the other but I, too, am a girl and did know some meanies =) I raised 5 boys and they all encountered mean from both sex but if you asked any of them, they would tell you that they would never, never try to break up a girl fight =) =)

Kelly said...

Great post...this is something I think about a lot being a mother of a girl (and one boy). I have seen kids, even as young as 5 not including her and my heart breaks. But the best thing I can do is teach HER to include and she always does. Knowing she is being the kind of person I had always hoped for her to be is so satisfying to my soul. I hope she can show others how to include through her tender and loving ways.

Jen said...

Thank you Kelle! Wonderful words! I hope we can all teach our daughters to be supportive and caring :)

Marci said...

It's ironic that some of the comments to a well-written, heartfelt post about "mean girls" are so . . . mean. Downright nasty. I'm taking the time out of my day to post a comment of gratitude for your writing on this topic, Kelle. It's crazy to me that others will take time out of their day to spew such hateful language toward a blog and author that they claim to dislike so much. I personally don't direct my energy toward things that I dislike. So strange, so negative, such a waste of their time. Keep on keepin' on, Kelle!

LeeLee Guerre said...
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Alison said...

I've got the lyrics of Shania Twain's "She's Not Just a Pretty Face" going through my head right now. Great post!

AndreaWasson831 said...

As the mother of five, three being girls ages 27, 25 and 19, there are mean people out there and it doesnt' have to get 'worse'. Teenagers are teenagers and our teenage years have been awesome. Our youngest is now 14 and while all of them have had some growing pains and learning experiences, that is what they have been, learning experiences. You meet mean people in life. It's all in how you deal with those mean people, the lessons learned.

asfad said...

Leelee, do you mean by "working in law enforcement" that you are a janitor in a law firm?
If Kelle does try to sue, doesn't that mean that a judge is going to find out about how she posted a full frontal of her kid on instagram. Or how she completely disregards her children's privacy and safety.The evidence is there.
Let's see what's worse: someone who says that Kelle is fake, or someone who uses their children to make money.
I guess a little bit of criticism about her blog is more serious than posting nude pictures of your kid for every pervert to see...

If Kelle does get something that is OTT and threatening then it's different but if you can't handle a little criticism, well then you're a pussy.

Brianna Giacoppe said...

Thank you so much for letting us into your life, your heart, and your family. I just finished reading your book and I could not get enough! It took me a day to read and it ended all too soon! Your bravery and strength amaze me.

Sydney said...

I'm just disgusted with the rude comments. It's obvious the spewer of the hatred is one person. One pathetic stalker; a sociopath. A loner, someone that isn't accepted and takes revenge on the world one blog comment at a time. This weird "nudity" thing that they keep harping about is really giving me the creeps. Get over it, some people have pictures of their kids without shirts or whatever; it takes people like you to make it perverted. Get your mind out of the gutter. Quit stalking this blog. I'm sick of seeing your ridiculous rants cowardly posted under a bunch of fake names. Sociopaths just love to shock and saying offensive things about children is right up their alley. Being anonymous and cowardly is also something they love to do. We get it! You feel you've somehow been wronged by Kelle, you don't like the way Lainey dresses and you are offended by an innocent picture of her child that you view as pornographic because you are disturbed. Here's a great idea. Don't come here any more. It's really that simple.

I follow this blog because it brings me joy. I especially love the visits to Fred's. And I admire Kelle for all of her support of NDSS. What a wonderful cause. Kelle, you are a rock star! You are so blessed. Each one of your children is so special and you have such a great relationship with your husband. What a wonderful life! Thanks for sharing it with us.

rosepetal501 said...

Honestly, I am a little sad to see how your blog has turned into one post after another selling products. It's lost it's sweetness, and the real life feel. It's become so commercial, and it's kinda sad.

mintem said...

I have to agree with rosepetal501... I started reading this blog back when Nellas birth story went viral, and used to look forward to a new blog post every day or two. Now when I do read it seems very commercialized and it seems that nothing comes from the heart or from Enjoying the Small Things but just posts for the sake of posting. I too am saddened...:(

Argyrie said...

To Sydney...very well said. That poster obviously has mental problems and should be ignored until they are banned through ISP trace. Kelle-don't skip a beat we love your writing and photos..a breath of fresh air in a troubling world.

Tammie said...

Powerful is the word of the week. Great word.

jajb79 said...

Amen!

Laura M said...

Ironic how the poster who's complaining about child nudity and how bad it was for Kelle to post a picture of her daughter's bare bottom constantly writes 'pussy'. You know where that person's corrupt mind is! Hypocrite. That's why all that vulgarity spews out of their mouth you can see what's in their brain. Kelle is obviously leaving these nasty comments up because she's documenting what these people are posting. Good idea too because Blogger can monitor and see this. A lot of police departments and district attorney offices have special units now that deal strictly with technological crimes and stalking and if they feel it's warranted,t they refer you to state or federal agencies to monitor it. The first they they tell you is to save all communications for evidence. Do not edit or alter them in any way. Also, keep a record of all electronic contact they make (forums, blogs, e-mail, etc..) These Kelle haters have been following and writing nasty comments on her Instagram for a while. They come here to her blog and continue with their rants and even have a forum dedicated to their Kelle bashing. They definitely can be banned and located. And to what someone said earlier, yup, Kelle should make her blog visible only to the public who provides an email address and if they get out of hand, block them. Whether you're a big-time celebrity or a local blogging personality, once you become a public person, you need to protect yourself. A lot of unstable wierdos come out from under their rocks and love to stalk and harass anyone with a following. They often times attack their children too which is what we're seeing. That's why film stars, atheletes, tv personalities, authors, activists and even blogging personalities (look at PerezHilton) obtain restraining orders, sue and even prosecute wackos who cyberstalk, follow, contact, bother and disturb their peace of mind (and that of their families). Good job, Kelle, let the morons leave a trail.

Jen said...

Laura M, I agree that many comments here are way out of line, but Kelle can't go to a blog that is only visible to people who provide their email addresses. Her family relies on this blog for their income and she wouldn't be able to sustain the profits if she ran the blog that way. Her sponsors/ads depend on the fact that she gets so many pageviews.

asfad said...
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asfad said...

Laura M.,
You're an idiot (and probably a pussy too, if you fear criticism so much that you would sue. Such a litigious, twat.).

Donna said...

Asfad....I truly hope you are not a parent! If so, I would think your children would be so ashamed of you!! Please tell me you don't use that vulgar language around them!!

Why would you want to waste your time being so hateful? Must be something much deeper as to why you have yourself in such a tizzy over Kelle's blog & her choices in how she chooses to live & parent her beautiful children!

KARMA!!!

Laura M said...

asfad, we all see you've gone from the word pussy to twat. Bravo! You obviously have a fetish for female genitilia. We're waiting for the next vulgar word. Come on, get it out of your system. Maybe that's why you're so obsessed with children's nudity and full frontal pictures. You're focused on that nonsense and are interpreting things in the most disgusting way. Are you a pedophile? You're lurking Kelle's board and trying to use shock value for what? Plus that mouth of yours. No matter what you say or what you do, you're not going to take her fan base from her. Write till you turn blue, you're only wasting YOUR time, not wasting any of hers. With the thousands of blogs out there, you really need to find one you like. Do something productive with your time. Go clean your house, spend time with your kids, go get a coffee. Oops, sorry, that's probably too fake for you. God forbid we do anything nice around here, right? lol. Kelle is a nice woman who's harming no one. She's thin, she's pretty, she has a nice home, she's positive, writes like she's happy and Lord that must really make so many people's blood boil. That's some crazy stuff, very sad too. Unbelievable.

Lily Brown said...

Why do people keep mentioning Kelle's blog sponsors? Why does anyone care if she's sponsored? Are you guys the IRS? Why do you care about her income or how her family survives? How is that relevant to anything...most of all how is it relevant to any of you?! It's not like she's interrupting your tv programming or knocking on your doors with her sponsor info. Uh, you guys are clicking onto HER blog. Get it, HERS. She's the boss, she runs it how she wants. You don't like it, make your own so you can run the way YOU want. If you don't like the sponser info in her posts, scroll thru it, simple as that. It only takes half a mili-second of your time. Quit being so damn petty. To the fashion critics here, I must've missed the part where Kelle said she was applying for trendsetter of the year. She never claimed to be some fashionista. She's a mom, she's busy. If she's not dressed like she's hot off the runway, excuse the **** out of her. She sure looks better than I ever did when my kids were that small. I spent a lot of those years in sweatpants, sweatshirt and my hair in a bun. And just for info, a lot of latinos dress their kids in those type of summer dresses, the one Lainey was wearing in these pictures...anyone can wear them. You got issues with the way her kids are dressed, peel those $5 Target stained shorts and shirts off your brats and send us the link where your kids are modeling for BabyGap and Pottery Barn Kids. Let's see how YOUR kids are flossing. And last but not least, @ asfad, you're disgusting scum using Kelle's kids as pawns to attack her. Shame on you and your pathetic, good-for-nothing, miserable, frumpy, got-nothing-better-to-do kind. You ugly people are drowning in all that HATER-ADE you be drinking.

grace04 said...
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Jen said...

...Lily Brown, I really hope the sponsor thing wasn't aimed at me. If it was, you seriously misread my intent.

Dara said...

I believe this is not the place for nasty comments. Criticisms written well that seek to inform in a polite way, I don't see a problem, but the nasty comments are just wrong.

However, as the wife of an officer who works in the cyber crimes field let me inform you that this kind of stuff is in no way, shape or form even on their radar. There is a whole lot of bad that happens online. A bunch of women (or guys or girls or both) calling anyone names isn't going to be investigated. Unless President Obama starts a blog ain't no one gonna investigate nasty comments. That's the truth.

Phyl said...

I love this post. Women can be the best friends you'll ever have or the worse. Like attracts like. You have supportive and encouraging friends because you are supportive and encouraging. Kids learn so much more from watching their parents than listening to them. I don't think your babies could have landed in a better place. Phyl

grace04 said...
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Jody said...

Oh I love this one!! Pass the love on! This post made my night. Makes me wish more than ever I could have a girl to teach this to - but just as important, reminds me I have four wonderful little boys who I am raising to believe this too!! Women are so strong, so amazing & we need to remember this - for ourselves and each other.

Rachel Rosawitz said...
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LW said...

JennyV - I am not mean. I do not use cuss words, nor do I harass. I am simply the mother of girls and I know how children are. Lainey is absolutely beautiful, but the truth is that her clothes make her "different", which, unfortunately, is the worst thing to be when you're a kid. Not from our adult perspective, of course; different is a good thing. But children don't have the capability to recognize that. I cringed looking at the photos of Lainey with her friends.

I also LOL @ the poster above trashing Target clothes. Isn't that where Kelle spends much of her time and money??

I agree that some of the rude comments are over the top, but so are some of the defenders. Lawyers? Really? lol

Jennifer said...

Yes, there will be drama. My daughter is 15 and we've had our share. But, it makes you stronger and to rise up and be the great example and not the horrible warning!

Rachel Rosawitz said...

Lily Brown,
Doesn't Kelle shop at Target? You just insulted your God.
Blasphemy!
In some religions it is/was punishable by death, but in Kelle-anity you have to send her free stuff from Etsy.
You should also be punished for being a crazy bitch, but it is permissible by Kelle, our Lord, if it praises her.
Repent.

LeeLee Guerre said...
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LeeLee Guerre said...

Kelle needs to disable and close her comments section. I love her blog, hate the negative energy her haters are bringing to it.

~Gina~ said...

I just read your post on my google reader, and clicked on the site to be able to comment on how sweet and true this post rang with me. I have been part of a number of groups that were my sisters/friends/support during different times of my life. There is something so special about the support of a close knit group of female friends. I was surprised to see the negative/combative comments and only read a few before deciding to stop because I want to stay in the happy place that your blog post left me!

Rachel Sebastian said...

There is nothing better than going to school and knowing your girlfriends are going to be there. It's what made going to school so much easier for me.

Annemarie Peronti said...
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Annemarie Peronti said...

Thank you for posting this! It is something I really needed to read right now. Mothers are the most important role models for their daughters and it is up to them to teach them kindness and inclusion!

grace04 said...

Most of the time the kids who are "mean" have issues within the family or with themselves. They are insecure, angry and very jealous . I actually feel sorry for the "mean" girls because they have no peace and are miserable.

Stephanie Precourt said...

Ivy is in preschool and thankfully we haven't encountered mean girls (or her being the mean girl!) but just recently with the warmer weather and more park days I'm noticing her wanting to partner up with a favorite friend and it's so hard to both encourage her to enjoy the feeling of a best friend but also include others as well. I remember how magical it was to have a real best friend but also how you kind of wanted to keep in all inclusive. It's a toughie, and I hope for everyone to get along through the years. My oldest is in middle school and so far it's been smooth sailing for him. Having good real life role models and examples to follow helps, I am sure!

Steph

AshleyAnn said...

What a beautiful post Kelle! Love this so much...

Nani said...

This post is Beautiful. Amazing words. Thank you for this!

Tiffany said...

My almost 8 year old is a very friendly person who includes everyone when she is playing. We have encounter some mean kids at school but not many and we work through each one. Sometimes it is as simple as choosing not to play with that person and other times it is not. Each incident is hard but as parents we use those incidents to teach her own to be the better person and to learn about others and herself as well.

Colton Fisher said...

Bravo Miss Kelle! Bravo! I am a mom of two boys. Always wanted a daughter, but I guess the universe knew better. I now find myself excited to raise two boys...that will become respectful, compassionate, and never doubt the power and independance of a girl/woman. It's a big job. One I am honored to do. Sorry things have been wonky and stressful for you and hope that Brett is home soon. I can totally relate to where you found yourself this week and every time we go through something like that around here, I always think to myself: holy moly, how do the single moms do it? Their strength on a daily basis - I stand in awe of it.

KWQR said...

Finally catching up... LOVE this so much... I will teach my daughters that the world is full of amazing, supportive women. And if it feels at times that those women are hard to find, I will tell them to look within themselves. Be that girl, always.
Well said Mama.
xo
Kate

Brandi said...

I love this post so much! Thank you for reminding me how I can look inward and model how to be a better woman for my daughter.

joylovelyjoy said...

I just felt the need to throw my voice into the mix and say that this was beautiful, your girls are beautiful, and amen. These are the kinds of words we need to carry with us always, to dole out to our girls whenever they (or we) need reminding. Thank you.

Unknown said...

In response to the "girls are mean" statement. I too catch myself in that mindset, although mine is more "girls are drama." I try to remind myself of two things. My mom always responds "really?! boys do the emotional messing with people and they get physical quickly. girls just emotionally mess with each other." AND I have a sweet niece who has managed to get through her first year of high school and initiates conversations with her mom about how rare girls who "are confident of themselves" are and is aware that she is not confident. Girls aren't mean, in figuring out who we are many girls have moments that are not us at our best, that doesn't make our entire gender or our entire self "mean."

Jessica Watson said...

I worry about this too for my five year-old but, so far, she has found kindness and I hope it continues. I feel the same about blogging. It has gotten me through the worst of times and through it I've connected with moms who've been through what I have, something that never would have happened if I were not putting my words out there.

Kate and Geoff said...

Quite honestly I am shocked and bewildered at all of the "hate" posts people are leaving...if you don't like what Kelle has to say, then why take the time to #1 read her post and #2 leave a comment. Sounds like you all are the ones who truly have a problem and really should look into getting a life of your own.
I do not see Kelle's pictures as an "interruption" of her children's play, rather a celebration- she does not set up the scenes, she captures them in innocent play.
Lastly, I LOVE how you dress your children- and really, who cares- if you are this obsessed with what a little girl wears, I can only imagine what your own wardrobe looks like...Good Gracious!

PS- Kelle, I love your pics and stories- you have inspired me to blog my own family and I love sharing it with my loved ones who live far away and don't get to see or experience our little moments we have everyday:)

Angelica said...

@LilyBrown. Good point and I agree with you except for one thing. Latinos do not put those kinds of dresses on their children. Not even in Mexico where I've been and have family. I am Mexican. Those dresses are traditional from a long time ago. They are used as costume now days in Mexico and the U.S. , worn during festivities, in touristy areas or in Mexican restaurants worn by hostesses and waitresses. Target clothes are cute. Kelle shops Target and so do I. I wish I looked as good as Kelle after after just having a baby.

Carolyn Bradford said...

I just recently started reading your blog and I am addicted! I actually started at the end and am reading backwards which I think I am going to reverse myself today! LOL. I found your blog through a post on Down Syndrome Mommies on Facebook! I live in Miami, Fl and have a FB Friend that is moving to Naples 11/13. She has no friends out their yet but her fiancé has a house there and that is where she is relocating with her teenage daughter and I believe her son is 8-9 who has Down Syndrome and Autism. I am planning to visit her when she moves out in November of 2013 and would love the chance to meet you and your beautiful family. I am a single Mom with and 8 year old boy with Down Syndrome. He is the love of my life. Well, I am now off to read more of your blog and will be purchasing your boo, in the very near future! Thank you for sharing you and your beautiful family with us!

Carolyn Bradford said...

I just recently started reading your blog and I am addicted! I actually started at the end and am reading backwards which I think I am going to reverse myself today! LOL. I found your blog through a post on Down Syndrome Mommies on Facebook! I live in Miami, Fl and have a FB Friend that is moving to Naples 11/13. She has no friends out their yet but her fiancé has a house there and that is where she is relocating with her teenage daughter and I believe her son is 8-9 who has Down Syndrome and Autism. I am planning to visit her when she moves out in November of 2013 and would love the chance to meet you and your beautiful family. I am a single Mom with and 8 year old boy with Down Syndrome. He is the love of my life. Well, I am now off to read more of your blog and will be purchasing your boo, in the very near future! Thank you for sharing you and your beautiful family with us!

Laura Gibson said...

I love this. I hope my daughter can be taught to help other girls as well. Wonderful :)