Profile for Avital Norman Nathman

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Mommie Dearest: Going To Hell In A Handbag

Disrupting The Pink Aisle
Little Girls Sing About "Disrupting The Pink Aisle" In Toy Stores To The Tune Of "We Are The Champions"
Little girls sing about disrupting the pink aisle in toy stores! Read More »
Little Girls & LEGOs
LEGOs are the perfect gender neutral toy. Why make them "girly"? Read More »
Easy Bake Oven For Boys
Teen activist asks Hasbro to market oven to both genders. Read More »
On Sex And Gender
difference between sex and gender
Let's talk about the difference between sex and gender. Read More »
Skylar Davis vera bradley purse

There are a lot of worries parents might have as their child heads off to school: academic struggles, not getting along with teachers or classmates, bad behavior. The potential consequences for these concerns are worrisome as well. As a mother (and one who used to teach high school social studies), I don’t think it’s all that unusual to fret over things like these.

But one thing I didn’t think I’d have to be worried about is the possibility of my son being suspended for his sense of style. A 13-year-old 8th grader from Kansas was recently suspended for wearing a Vera Bradley handbag while attending school.

Suspended. For having a quilted bag. Seriously. Keep reading »

6 Shows We’re Psyched About For Fall!

6 Shows We're Psyched About For Fall!

I’ll be the first to admit it: I have really random TV watching habits. I’ve never seen “Mad Men,” “Game of Thrones,” or “Scandal,” and I even gave up on “Breaking Bad” after ibe season. Yet, I still watch the travesty that is “True Blood,” nurture a sick fascination with all the “Real Housewives” series, and have a penchant for most shows aired on ABC Family. Consider that all fair warning before taking any TV advice from me.

Networks have been promoting their new fall line ups for a while now, drumming up anticipation before most premiere this month or next. Most new pilots look like they’ll last one season and then fizzle out. Ahem, “Super Fun Night.” As much as I really want to love a female-driven comedy, especially one helmed by Rebel Wilson, I just don’t see this one lasting. But a few new shows did manage to catch my eye. However, knowing my luck, the ones I’ll be interested in will most likely be canceled after a season or two (“Bunheads” and “Alphas,” I’m looking at you). But, there’s always hope!

So with that, I give you my short list of shows  — both new and returning— that I’m looking forward to watching this fall. Keep reading »

Mommie Dearest: Don’t Turn Public School Vs. Private School Into A Battle In The Mommy Wars

Wear This, Not That
Wear This, Not That: What To Put On To Go To Class
How not to dress inappropriately for class. Read More »
Cramming!
College student cramming for a final
An inner monologue while cramming for a final. Read More »
school girl

This week, many kids, including my own, are headed back to school. And, like anything parenting-related, school brings along with it its own heaping pile of judgement. What school do you send your child to? Public? Private? Charter? Or do you homeschool or unschool? Regardless of what might work best for your own child and family, there is plenty of public opinion that will tell you that whatever you’ve decided is inherently wrong.

Slate.com decided to take the helm with a piece by Allison Benedikt called “If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person.” We’re not even into the article and the judgements are flying. Clearly we’re off to a great start. But at least Benedikt acknowledges it:

“I’m just judgmental. But it seems to me that if every single parent sent every single child to public school, public schools would improve.”

I am a former public high school social studies teacher. I am a product and proponent of the public school system, and do my best to support to support local public schools (especially when it comes to music and arts programs) whenever possible. I also send my son to a local private elementary school. And I totally understand Benedikt’s line of thinking.

Keep reading »

Real Talk: On Literary Erotica, Part 2

On Literary Erotica, Part 1
Real Talk: On Literary Erotica, Part 1
The first part of the Real Talk roundtable on erotica. Read More »
Erotica On The Rise
Erotic book sales are booming. Read More »
Real Talk: On Literary Erotica, Part 1

This edition of Real Talk – read Part 1 here — delves deep into the seduction that is literary erotica. This week I’m joined by two popular writers within the genre, as well as an avid reader/blogger. We talked tropes, stereotypes, and the stigma surrounding erotica.

  • Delphine Dryden writes award-winning contemporary erotic romance for Carina Press, and mainstream steampunk romance for Berkley. When not writing, she can be found noodling around on the internet or playing tabletop games far into the night. You can find her online at DelphineDryden.com, and she is on Twitter far too much. Or Facebook if you are into that.
  • Jeanette Grey is a former physics teacher, artist, tech support consultant, and web designer, now trying her hand at writing romance. Her short fiction has appeared in collections such as Best Erotic Romance 2013, and her latest release is Take What You Want from Samhain Publishing. Find her online at JeanetteGrey.com, on Twitter and on Facebook.
  • Jessica Luther is a freelance writer and journalist, reproductive justice activist, and historian. Her main blog is JessicaWLuther.com but she blogs about romance novels at Steel And Velvet.

Keep reading »

Real Talk: On Literary Erotica, Part 1

Guess That Fan Fiction!
Guess the source material for these fan fiction experts and win respect. Read More »
Erotica On The Rise
Erotic book sales are booming. Read More »
Real Talk: On Literary Erotica, Part 1

This edition of Real Talk delves deep into the seduction that is literary erotica. This week I’m joined by two popular writers within the genre, as well as an avid reader/blogger. We talked tropes, stereotypes, and the stigma surrounding erotica.

  • Delphine Dryden writes award-winning contemporary erotic romance for Carina Press, and mainstream steampunk romance for Berkley. When not writing, she can be found noodling around on the internet or playing tabletop games far into the night. You can find her online at DelphineDryden.com, and she is on Twitter far too much. Or Facebook if you are into that.
  • Jeanette Grey is a former physics teacher, artist, tech support consultant, and web designer, now trying her hand at writing romance. Her short fiction has appeared in collections such as Best Erotic Romance 2013, and her latest release is Take What You Want from Samhain Publishing. Find her online at JeanetteGrey.com, on Twitter and on Facebook.
  • Jessica Luther is a freelance writer and journalist, reproductive justice activist, and historian. Her main blog is JessicaWLuther.com but she blogs about romance novels at Steel And Velvet. Keep reading »

Mommie Dearest: Breastfeeding Shouldn’t Make Men And Women Unequal As Parents

Yoga Mom Breastfeeds
Yoga Mom Takes Breastfeeding To A Whole New Level
Yoga mom takes breastfeeding to a whole new level. Read More »
Nursing On Facebook
Why is Facebook so against photos of mothers breastfeeding? Read More »
Breastfeeding on Time
TIME magazine breastfeeding cover photo
Time magazine's breastfeeding cover is just a tad provocative. Read More »
reaction to Erickson breastfeeding article

When it comes to mothering and the so-called “Mommy Wars,” the one debate that will seemingly never die is the one centered around breastfeeding. I’ve written extensively about breastfeeding in the past, and in my day job I work on finding accessible ways to educate pregnant women about breastfeeding, in the hopes that they’ll at least be open to trying it out once their baby is born. I’m of the mind that “breast is best,” but I’m also painfully aware that we  as a country and society  do not make it easy in the slightest for women  —particularly working women or those from lower socio-economic backgrounds— to breastfeed. I was a big fan of this year’s World Breastfeeding Week and I try and support women who want to breastfeeding but lack resources/information/help. I also try to support and provide information for pregnant women who aren’t sure about whether they will nurse or not. And, when possible, I help connect parents who want their babies to have breast milk with mothers who have an excess supply. I also will not shame, harass, or harangue a woman who chooses to or needs to formula feed their baby for whatever reason.

I will, however, call out someone who uses faulty logic as reasoning for not nursing her hypothetical future child. Karla A. Erickson’s “Explaining Why, Next Time, I Won’t Breastfeed” was a recent op/ed in the Iowa Press-Citizen that purports to use breastfeeding as the cause of uneven and unequal division of labor when it comes to parenting. Keep reading »

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