Motherhood

15 Great Reader Comments on Parenting

We’ve had so many wonderful parenting comments lately that we had to share a few with you. Here are 15 funny, wise insights…

On feeding a baby:

“It was exhausting to try to breastfeed my twins. One twin was great, the other not so much, and I was getting an hour of sleep between feeding and pumping. I decided a happy mommy was better for my twins, so after three months we switched to formula. They are now healthy nine-year-olds. Whatever works for you is best.” — DD

On parenting nostalgia:

“My friend said to me, ‘You’ve loved every stage that your kids have been in. You are sure to love all the stages coming up.’ It has been so true and helpful to remember. Newborns are so sweet and toddlers are so fun but so are school-age kids and honestly teenagers are the best. When they leave home they make you so proud and come back for these great visits. I’m looking forward to what’s next!” – Heather

“I once heard a stranger’s ringtone: happy baby belly laughs, and it brought joy to my heart.” — Ann

On tried-and-true advice:

“When my kids were little and we were traveling, I’d always have them pick out some postcards along the way. Then when we were at a restaurant waiting for our meal, it was a great time for them to jot a quick note to grandparents or family back home or even a note to themselves!” — Shelley

“I have two kids — an eight-year-old boy and a four-year-old girl who is on the autism spectrum. Some kids, but especially autistic children, feel uncomfortable in unfamiliar situations, so try to talk to them as much as possible about what is coming. For instance, ‘We’re going to a restaurant, your cousins will be there, the restaurant looks like this, they have this food you like, when we wait for our food you can color or play with some toys quietly, etc. etc.’ My daughter loves predictability and hates surprises, so if something is going to be a surprise, I try to make it fun for her. Like guessing with her how her food is going to be served, ‘Do you think the French fries will be skinny or fat? Will the tomatoes be on the top or on the side?'” — Kiana

“I hated mornings, and when I was a teenager my mom started doing a new thing where she’d throw open the door to my room and jubilantly yell, ‘Get the fuck out of bed!’ Her joyous cursing was absolutely hilarious to us both and started the day on a ridiculous note that really took the edge off.” — Rebecca

“My best parenting tip is to make a habit of narrating how you feel. Kids are not afraid of emotions and they’re not blind to them. If you tell them that you’re frustrated or sad or happy and why, you’ll give them language to talk about what they’re feeling and a sense of how emotions ebb and flow and change over time. I don’t mean a watered down version (like, ‘Don’t worry, Mama’s just tired’). Fall apart a little. Be human. Tell them the truth about what you feel, because they can already see it. Giving them rich, deep language for it shows them that they can experience, tolerate and navigate complex emotions and be open with you about how they’re feeling.” — Olivia

On sweet sayings:

“I was babysitting a kid, and she spaced out majorly one day. I asked her what was up and she said, ‘The store of my head is almost closed,’ WHICH IS SUCH A RELATABLE FEELING.”
Elina

“When our son was three, we were in a train driving past our old apartment and we told him ‘This is where we used to live before you were born.’ And he said, ‘Yes, that is before I came and found you two rascals.’”
Anne

“The other night, when I was tucking in my five-year-old for the night, he snuggled up to me and said, “I think, at the mama shop, I got the best mama!” And a few months ago: ‘Just, how do you make a pear? I mean, is it just an apple that you squish with your hands?'” — Isabella

“I have twin nine-month-old girls who started sitting up on their own about a month ago. Even though it’s not quite as exciting as it was the first time it happened, every time one of the babies is sitting up my four-year-old daughter SCREAMS with excitement: ‘MOMMY, THE BABIES ARE SITTING UP!!! LOOOOOOOK!!! GOOD JOB, ANNIE!!! GOOD JOB, BRIDGIE!!! YOU DID IT!!!!!!’ And we can’t help but laugh because this happens at least 25 times a day now, and she’s been doing full on cheerleader status with clapping and jumping up and down for her sisters, for the last month! I mean who doesn’t love being cheered on?!” — Bren

On dreams of adulthood:

“Mine definitely included signing credit card receipts; it seemed so glamorous and adult. Tapping a card to pay is convenient, but my inner 10-year-old was kind of sad when you no longer had to sign for things!” — S.

“I always thought that being a grown-up meant talking with your hands while holding a glass of wine at the dinner table. I also definitely wanted to drive a minivan and use the parking brake.” — Kelly

“Mine were all based on teachers I had. I wanted lipstick rings on my coffee mugs, clicky clacky heels, and thick thick fingernails. I’m a teacher now, and my students comment on my earrings, my boot collection, and my book stacks all around the room.” — Ann

“I’ve been rather disappointed that adulthood has involved so few opportunities to dramatically pull off my clip-on earrings before answering the phone.” — Karin

P.S. 16 surprising parenting tips and more great reader comments on parenting.

(Photo by Sweenshots & Shaymone/Stocksy.)

  1. Amélie says...

    We had just finished potty training my daughter, age two. I was by myself at the airport with her so I take her into the stall with me. She pees, I get her dressed again then I pee. She bursts out clapping going “Yay Mama!!!” Wouldn’t you know, I did feel idiotically proud of myself :)

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      so cute :)

  2. Jamie says...

    The Things They Say…

    I feel like I’ve had a zillion jobs over the years but one of the most memorable was as a nanny for a family of 5. The parents were reunited high school sweethearts that brought two 8 year olds and two 10 years olds to their family plus they had a little girl who was 9 months old. On the way home from a long day at the adventure park the youngest boy was causing a ruckus in the van. I looked at him in the rearview mirror and said, “Hey C, could you stop acting like such a wennie?” (Common term in their family.) And, without missing a beat, he replied, “Okay Ms. Jamie if you stop acting like such a vagina.” OMG, what??? I busted out laughing, how could I not? Then the rest of the clan busted out in laughter and continued on our way home.

  3. OM says...

    The photo for this article is so full of joy! These little girls made my heart sing! Loved this article!! And hahahaha at some of these comments – the things kids come out with!

  4. Cassandra says...

    I love love love the jumper woman no20 hibiscus flower. That hot pink feels so perfect and fresh for spring.

  5. Justine says...

    This was a great read, @cupofjo. Thank you!

  6. Beth Allen says...

    I love these posts – they remind me of community, which we’ve all missed so much during the pandemic!

  7. florence says...

    These are such a nice pick me up on a cold, gray day! Can you always post them for cold, gray days please?

  8. Stephanie says...

    “The store of my head is almost closed” — totally stealing that!

    • Jamie says...

      Ditto. So totally relatable.

  9. Jenny says...

    Every single one of these comments is pure joy and perfection. I needed to read these today, so thanks for that all you moms out there. xo

  10. Laura says...

    I recently learned the power of changing my explanations of my kids’ behavior. Without even realizing it, I had believed some common stories about why kids repeat bothersome behavior, or mess up, as being them “acting out” or trying to “push my buttons”. When I changed those internal explanations to instead say my kids are young and therefore are inept at being loving and helpful (which is what they are trying to do), I found that my anger almost disappeared and I am much better able to gently teach them. It also had made my time with them so much more relaxed and joyful. I learned this from the new parenting book, “Hunt, Gather, Parent” by Michealeen Doucleff, which I would highly recommend to anyone interested in learning more.

  11. Ellen says...

    I love Olivia’s parenting advice so much. I think it would help so many people to have healthier lives and relationships if everyone did this kind of thing.

    And Anne’s son’s quote is hilariously adorable!!

  12. Molly G. says...

    Oh I love these posts so much! I started reading COJ before I had kids and they were my fave posts even back then :) My 3 yo is full of the funniest thoughts and sayings. I just had another baby so he is fascinated with the idea that he was once small enough to be in my belly. He also thinks breastfeeding is really cool and “nurses” his stuffed animals and toys. He points at my boobs and says “That’s where MILK comes from!!!” Oh kids!

  13. Sarah K says...

    I love these “dreams of adulthood” comments so much. Mine included using valet parking and driving a stick shift like a pro. Both goals accomplished haha.

  14. Katherine says...

    John Mulaney <3!

  15. Kerry says...

    Every morning, my son (now 17yo and 6’3″) used to step outside and stretch his little arms way out to “touch the day.” Only then could he get dressed for school. It was the sweetest way to begin each day.

    • Christina M says...

      OMG, this is the sweetest! We should all start our day this way!

  16. Janice O'Kane says...

    “I’ve been rather disappointed that adulthood has involved so few opportunities to dramatically pull off my clip-on earrings before answering the phone.” — Karin

    Me too Karin, me too!!

    • Kate says...

      Lol.

    • Bee says...

      So weird but me too!! We all need more Mad Men moments.

    • Oh yes!! Clipping them off standing/sitting in one position talking of the Telephone!!! Oh I wish I lived in Mad Men days!!! Boozing it up at 11am in the office. Just an average normal work day!! LOL

  17. Alex says...

    Really great stories and advice in this. Can you run this quarterly?

  18. Justine says...

    I love this a hundred million times:

    “I’ve been rather disappointed that adulthood has involved so few opportunities to dramatically pull off my clip-on earrings before answering the phone.” — Karin

  19. C says...

    These were so funny, and so moving. Thanks, CoJ readers.

  20. Sarah says...

    As a kid I thought using a projector (like they used at school) would be SUPER fun. Also, stamping library books was high on my to-do list.

    • Lia says...

      YES TO THE PROJECTOR!!!!!

    • Hope says...

      Oh my gosh, same!! I always wanted to write on those little clear sheets of paper you used over top worksheets on the projector!

    • Kelly says...

      A few years ago, I bought myself a little set of library cards and a date stamp and whenever I loan a book to a friend they sign it out. It’s charming to open a book and see who it’s visited, to see the book plates with my maiden name and the little notes from friends.

    • Kendra says...

      When my daughter’s favorite game was playing school, we bought a used overhead projector that the local school system sold surplus. Best Christmas present ever.

    • Heather says...

      Re: stamping library books, I specifically loved the little machine that librarians had that would auto-stamp the return date cards. In high school, I volunteered at the local library and one afternoon (once! out of four years!) they handed me a big stack of cards and asked me to put them all through the machine. It was heavenly.

      I also thought it would be super fun to be a cashier so you could use the scanner and press buttons all day. I still get a little thrill from typing my credit card number in on a computer, to be honest.

    • Kate says...

      Yes to stamping library cards! I also always wanted to use one of those old-fashioned cash tills. The ones with the chunky buttons (pre digital). I never got the chance and to this day, it’s something I would still like to do!

    • mindi says...

      This is possibly why I became a librarian.

  21. Christine says...

    Joanna and CoJ team: In the interest of inclusivity, would you ever consider publishing an article on formula feeding mothers and their experiences? I think much of the shame and hurt so many of us have experienced stems from a lack of positive content about that route. There are so many posts and articles out there about the joys and benefits of breastfeeding, but very few (if any, honestly) that focus on the joys and benefits of bottle feeding, without positioning it as the second-choice option for women who are unable to breastfeed.

    Your blog is a wonderfully inclusive platform that empowers women to make the life choices that are best for them. But I would agree with other commenters (from the original post) that, on this topic, you have fallen a bit short. It would be really amazing to see you dedicate a post to talking about formula feeding in a positive, celebratory way, and an opportunity to shed light on the experiences so many of us have had in the shadow of “breast is best” culture.

    Thank you for everything you do!

    • Amanda says...

      Oh, I would love this. Currently grappling with being unable to breastfeed and trying to find joy in bottle feeding.

    • Alex says...

      As the neighbor of a woman that committed suicide post partum (and I think the toxic expectations of breast only didn’t help as she was alone with her baby and exhausted) I second this. Breast is an option… as is formula… and it may be best for some but certainly not all. Everything has risks and benefits.

    • Hope says...

      100% agree with this. I formula fed both of my babies and it was absolutely the right (and best!) choice for us, no doubt.

    • Cathy says...

      Oh, yes please. Not being able to breastfeed was a major part of my postpartum depression. If I had known then that my now four year old daughter would turn out healthy and brilliant and happy no matter how she was fed, those early months could have been so much happier.

    • JJ says...

      I would love this! Speaking from my own experience, I worked SO HARD with my first baby to breastfeed, despite low supply, needing to do tons of extra pumping sessions for the entire first year, constantly stressing about whether I was pumping enough or whether he was full after nursing. With my second baby we started running into a lot of the same issues, and pretty early on I just called it–I couldn’t do it a second time, and we just went to formula full-time. And it was AMAZING. She is the happiest, healthiest baby, she sleeps so well, we have the best relationship, and I never had to battle with the pump, or cry about ounces. I actually feel so much more “successful” as a formula-feeding mom than I ever did as a nursing mom. I wish there had been more stories out there about what a POSITIVE decision formula feeding can be. (Even writing this there’s a voice in my head telling me I should have tried harder and not to post this comment–so important to fight against the internal and external judgments about formula feeding, and that it’s OK to take care of ourselves and our babies in the best way we can.)

    • Charlotte says...

      I really appreciate your comment, Christine. I chose to stop trying to breastfeed at 1.5 months because I truly hated it and felt that it was significantly contributing to my PPD. It felt like such a big decision to make because so much of what I read just said to try harder at breastfeeding. Stopping made the world of difference to my mental health, which in turn made me a better mom to my daughter.
      As someone who was adopted and so never had the chance to be breastfed, I’m always shocked how much pressure I put on myself about it. I had formula from day one and am a perfectly healthy adult!

    • Kate says...

      I would love this too! In the meantime, you should check out theformulamom on instagram. She mainly posts tips but has ‘formula friday’ where her stories is full of cute babies downing their bottles!

    • laura says...

      …the very first comment was about a positive formula feeding experience. The exact thing you want mentioned is in this article, so how does it fall short?

    • Hollienoel says...

      Oh, oh, Christine! Yes! I remember having to switch my daughter from EBF to RX formula cold turkey and I COULDNT FIGURE OUT HOW TO DO IT?! Plenty of resources on how to feed a newborn but ZILCH on how much a 6 month old might be eating, how often to feed them, what kind of bottles and nipples, etc. And I had ONLY “breast is best” rhetoric in my head and I had to really slog through that it was not, in fact, best for my child. Actually, maybe I should write this article for you. It took an absolute conversion in me, but I’m now a fed-is-best evangelist.

    • When you do that article, please include my perspective of using the oh-so-glamorous nipple shield for 6 months. It was so humiliating and at the same time I did not give a bleep. Motherhood in a nutshell.

    • Julia says...

      I love this idea!!

    • Bonnie says...

      I’d love to contribute to that discussion!

    • Megan says...

      I agree! My relentless commitment to breastfeeding was very damaging to my mental health postpartum. First, my baby was horribly fussy for WEEKS and I only found out later it was because he wasn’t getting enough to eat and there’s no way to measure how much he is eating from breastfeeding. I spent six months in CONSTANT worry about my milk supply and how much I was pumping, because in my fragile mental state I was convinced that the ONLY way my baby would eat was if I pumped enough milk-it didn’t even occur to me to feed him formula. My baby never could breastfeed but I ended up pumping exclusively for 9 months, supplementing with formula for only 1 bottle per day after I went back to work. I so badly wish the messaging around breastfeeding was different as it would have drastically improved my experience. Now, my #1 advice for new moms is before baby is born, research and pick out a formula you want to use and then have it on-hand should the need for it arise.

    • Angela says...

      I think being an older mom made it easier to do things my own way and be fine with it.
      My milk never “came in” and I was feeding formula even before leaving the hospital. When I told my doctor I was worried about not breast feeding, she waved her hand and said her dad was a pediatrician and they were all formula fed. After that I never worried about it.
      My boys are now 15, 13, and 13 and are funny, athletic, smart, smelly…

    • Alexandra says...

      +1 on this for a future blog post. And I’ll add something else: you don’t have to go to the ends of the earth to pump! Transitioning partially or fully formula when you head back to work is fine.

      I had no issues breastfeeding, and quite honestly enjoyed it more than I thought I would. But I was absolutely, unequivocally not going to pump when I returned to work. So I started slowly weaning to formula starting around 8 weeks and by the time my leave ended he was fully on formula. Ultimately I quit my job and launched a business off maternity leave – and pumping on the go while I hustled a business into existence would have been nearly impossible – but to not have the added mental load of managing pumping, storage, etc. was completely worth it.

      I could get on a soapbox about the “convenience” of pumping, but the book Lactivisim by Courtney Jung does it better.

    • Ashley says...

      This! I’m a believer that my experience with postpartum depression was brought on due to pressure from myself and medical professionals that “breast is best” no matter what. In spite of my daughter having an underdeveloped larynx that made it difficult/impossible for her to effectively breastfeed (we only learned this later), my male doctor convinced me I just need to try harder/ for more time. Four months of around the clock breast feeding, pumping, then bottle feeding left me having violent unwanted thoughts, suicidal ideation, and just feeling like there was no point in living anymore. I felt like a complete failure as a woman. Due to the messaging around formula, I honestly felt like I was feeding my baby poison.

    • Hilary says...

      Oh man, I relate to this 100%. I spent so SO much time when my daughter was little freaking out about supply and all manner of breastfeeding concerns, even waking myself up 2x per night when traveling for work, when I could’ve just enjoyed nice hotel rooms and sleeping through the night (gah so much regret about this!)

      For baby #2, I breastfeed him all day long and then at night, my husband gives him a nice big formula dream feed and then a 4am bottle too. I sleep through the night, my husband gets to do the middle of the night dance (which he happily does!) and we’re all happy and well-fed. And the fact that not one single lactation consultant or medical person told me this was an option makes me rage. Feeding your child doesn’t have to be one or the other!

      I believe that “Breast is Best” is a toxic statement. FED IS BEST, and we need to normalize formula and combination feeding anywhere and everywhere we can. And I think CoJ actually does a great job of that, in both posts and comments.

    • Meredith says...

      Totally, completely agree. I had zero problems breastfeeding but simply chose to combo-feed from the beginning so that I could get more sleep and take breaks and generally feel human. It was GREAT and I recommend it to everyone as a first choice. My husband also really enjoyed having so many opportunities to feed and bond with our son. I went back to school at 8 weeks postpartum and chose not to pump as I wanted to spend my precious daytime hours with childcare focused on my school work and social life and then be able to come home and focus on my family and getting some much-needed rest. We were able to keep going with formula during the day/breastfeeding mornings and evenings for a couple more months, and that was also great. Then at four months we went completely to formula as I was just…done breastfeeding and needed to have my body back to myself to get treatment for some medical conditions that had come up. My son has always been healthy and happy and I’ve been pleased and proud of the choices we made around feeding—especially because I never felt that feeding had a negative impact on my mental health, and I was able to enjoy the breastfeeding I did do without feeling chained to it. Pregnant with #2 now and planning to follow much the same course of action.

      We need to normalize formula as a completely fine first choice that has many upsides in terms of a more equitable distribution of labor and impact on the mother’s body, especially for those of us who had a difficult pregnancy/birth/postpartum complications. I’ve also been craving more positive stories and trying to be out and proud about my own as there are people who want and need to hear it.

      I’ve also been looking for a shirt that says “Formulactivist” but the internet has been coming up short!

    • Kay says...

      Yes! I formula fed both my babies from jump-right at the hospital. My son did not want my breast, I had a good cry over it, and gave him the little Similac ready to feed bottles, which he happily gulped down. I had a lactation consultant, which I humored every time she came in to check that I was trying. I did try- just half assed attempts though. My son is turning 2, sitting next to me and eating chocolate tahini banana bread. He has only had one fever in his life due to teething. He hasn’t had a single cold (could be due to Covid related isolation too). He knows his ABCs and his numbers, and is super active. When we brought him home from the hospital, I was overwhelmed by how much he needed me- I was starting to feel suffocated. I know that if I breastfed, I would’ve sunk into PPD. Formula feeding was the best decision.
      For my daughter who is now 8 months old, I gave her colostrum, but asked the nurses for formula in the hospital. Those wonderful nurses didn’t even bat their eyes, let alone judge me. In fact, they stuffed my bag with ready to feed bottles. She is also a happy, active baby causing havoc in the house with her brother.
      Someone said it in the comments- Fed is Best!

    • jules says...

      Formula is GREAT. I started adding in formula around month 2 because I was not producing enough milk. I ended up hybriding til 8 months but if I could do it again, I would have stopped WAY earlier. I was guilted and humiliated by lactation consultants and felt I had to make it work somehow or “fail” as I’d already “failed” with an emergency C-section. Once I pumped in a LaGuardia bathroom stall during rush hour. Hell. I wanted to go Office Space printer scene on my pump (young people, check youtube) when I finally said enough. There is ZERO shame in formula. Other benefit: 100% dad possible.

    • Aine says...

      Amanda, I’m not able to reply directly to your comment but I hope you see this – I breastfed for a while because I felt I had to, and hated it. SO did my baby, who would get into a rage when she’s hungry and refuse to eat. Bottle feeding took all the pressure away, made it easier for her to eat enough in one go, and let us relax a bit during her meals. I was definitely a calmer mom as a result.
      This is such a short part of their lives – in years to come you’ll be sharing ice cream and pizza and showing them how to dunk cookies in milk and sharing that joy.

    • Beth says...

      Amanda, I went through the same thing (like so many other women). I cried over it so much. I was afraid I wasn’t bonding with other my daughter. Couldn’t have been farther from the truth. Formula is great. You’re doing great.

  22. “The store of my hear is almost closed” is the best one!!!!! On an adult level this is the most relatable comment from a little one that applies to adulthood (especially during a pandemic!). I adore this!

  23. Joanna says...

    Ooh, I LOVED Heather’s comment about loving each phase that’s coming. My oldest is having a birthday this week, and it feels like such a big age – she’s grown and changed so much from little kid to kid-kid, and I already miss the age she is…. and Heather’s comment made me feel good.

  24. A.E. says...

    Kiana, you seem like a wonderful parent. <3

  25. MJ says...

    Love the comment about showing your emotions in front of your children! We make such a conscious effort but it helps to have the reminder. We talk SO much about my 2.5 year old daughters feelings, she is developing such a vocabulary that will hopefully serve her in the years to come. Yesterday, while wailing, “I have more tears to get out!!!!!” Reframing these meltdowns as positive, so healthy, so necessary (as Janet Lansbury says, roll out the red carpet for them) makes parenting so much more manageable in addition to healing my own issue of needing to always “pull it together.”

  26. Erin says...

    The cheerleading sister just melts my heart. Way to go, Annie and Bridgie’s big sister! :)

    • C says...

      Yes! Loved her too!

    • Kelsey says...

      Agreed!!

  27. Emily says...

    Just brilliant.

  28. I heard a comedian say: quicksand has been way less of an issue in adulthood than I thought it would be!! Also, ‘stop, drop and roll’ – I thought there would be way more uses for that! (glad there haven’t been, but that was drilled into our heads as kids!)

    • Megan says...

      Hahaha- so true about quicksand! About a year and a half ago, my then 4 year old some told me he NEVER wants to go to Florida because of the quicksand. I don’t even know where he heard this!

    • Megan says...

      Hahaha- this is so true about quicksand! About a year and a half ago my then 4.5 year old told me he never wants to go to Florida. When I asked why he said he cause of the quicksand. I don’t even know where he got any of that info from!

    • Amy says...

      What comedian is this?? I am dying!

    • Anna says...

      Megan, it’s John Mulaney.

    • J says...

      John Mulaney said that :)

    • Anothermother says...

      John Mulaney: “ I was a very nervous kid, I was anxious all the time when I was younger, but what’s nice is that some of the things I was anxious about don’t bother me at all anymore. Like, uh, I always thought that quicksand was going to be a much bigger problem than it turned out to be. Because if you watch cartoons, quicksand is like the third biggest thing you have to worry about in adult life behind real sticks of dynamite and giant anvils falling on you from the sky.”

    • Marian says...

      Amy I thiiiiink this was John Mulaney (but not 100% sure). Totally died laughing when I heard this!

    • Lauren says...

      John Mulaney!! So good

    • Thuy says...

      @Amy I’m pretty sure it’s John Mulaney!

    • Maree says...

      It was John Mulaney in his New in Town special! So funny!!

    • Kelly says...

      @Amy, it’s John Mulaney

  29. Betsy says...

    Rebecca, you rock!

  30. Laura says...

    Mrs. Carlotti, our elementary school secretary (early 70s) had the loftiest lacquered beehive ‘do, size triple-zero, ankle-length Italian tweed skirts, silk blouses with bows the size of magpies, and stilettos to match each one. Next to all the polyester double-knit, crepe-sole, plastic-rain-bonnet moms, she was the Hollywood adult in my otherwise PBS childhood.
    How I idolized her.

    • Wink says...

      Laura, you must be a writer. Your description of Mrs. Carlotti is simply wonderful.

    • Patricia says...

      Love this Laura!

    • Amanda says...

      Your writing is stellar. I’d read a book if you wrote one.

  31. I have been reading COJ for so many years, but as the kids say (ha) reading as a parent just hits different!!! I love this round-up so much. In an age where the comment section of nearly every online space can get so toxic, I couldnt help but wonder… how does COJ maintain such positivity?

  32. Emily says...

    Last weekend I watched a neighbor (who is such an amazing mom) tell her 3 year old son to show his “patient hands” while she did something before answering his question/helping him with whatever it was. He folded his little hands together almost like in a prayer. It gave him a task to think about and focus on for the minute before she got to him. I thought it was brilliant!

    • another Emily says...

      I’m going to start using this with my 3 year old! Thank you for sharing

    • Stacy S says...

      Ooh my gosh! This is amazing!! I’ve got a 2.5 yr old that does a lot of ‘MOM! MOM! MOMMA!” ing right now and this is going to get implemented!

  33. Meg says...

    Love the morning wake-up call! I carpooled to middle school with a friend who HATED mornings and her mom used to send me into her room when I arrived to wake her up. As an adult, I confronted her mom (a family friend) about it and she could not stop laughing and said she had taught me the value of delegating tasks you don’t like, haha.

    • A says...

      I also hated mornings as a teenager and my mom would send in our golden retriever because who can be angry at a golden retriever who is *so* happy to see you.

    • Mary Liotta says...

      I am one of nine children. My parents got tired of trying to get us all up for school. My parents’ room was downstairs and all our rooms (many sets of bunk beds) were upstairs. My dad put a speaker in the upstairs hall and used to blast music in the morning. His favorite was ‘Spanish Flea’ by Herb Alpert and the Tijuana Brass Band. We still all laugh when we hear that song!

    • Alexis says...

      Ok as the person in our family who set all the clocks ahead by 5 mins and sat in the car honking to make my little brother and mom (who were ALWAYS ALWAYS late) come out, my first thought was, didn’t that make them late for school?? LOL

    • Liz says...

      My father was in the Canadian Air Force during WW2. Growing up at home, on Saturdays he would get up early to drive my mom to the hair salon. Then he would return home and roust his 4 kids with the cry, “Daylight in the swamp!” We’d struggle to the breakfast table where he would give us tasks for the day. Then Dad would steal back to bed!! Still makes me laugh!!

    • Anne says...

      This jogged a memory of my dad, when I was about 11, bringing my then-baby sister into my room to wake me up in the morning. He set her on my bed and she crawled up toward my pillow, giggling and drooling, and it was a surprisingly sweet way to be awakened.

  34. Karen says...

    Rebecca, that’s the mom I wished for!
    Karen

  35. Mandy says...

    The adult ones are so funny!

  36. Liz says...

    Karin, you just made my day. I AGREE.

  37. kim says...

    I had a ton of health complications after my twins were born and I could not breast feed. I went through so much guilt for that and it was so stupid in hind sight. I had just watched my best friend breast feed her twins for 3 years….but you have to do what is best for you and the babies and if that means formula in order for you to be a better mom, so be it. I had guilt and I couldn’t even control the fact that I couldn’t breast feed. Not sure why women pit ourselves against one another so much when it comes to mothering.

    • JinCA says...

      Never commented before but I have to say thank you for this! I am a breast cancer survivor pregnant with my first and feel terribly guilty that I won’t be able to breastfeed. I literally don’t have breasts and I still feel like I’m selfish for having a baby if I can’t give them the best possible start in life. The language we use around breastfeeding is powerful, and while I fully recognize the good that can do, man can it also make me feel awful even when something is out of my control.

    • Pat says...

      Dear Kim, Jinca, and any other mamas who need to hear this,
      I am a mother, grandmother , and a postpartum doula. A phrase that I love is ” Fed is best.” I learned this from a wonderful ob/gyn, Dr. Christine Sterling. You can follow her on Instagram and she has a website….” The Sterling Life”. She was not able to breast feed her first child and reading about her thoughts on breastfeeding is so powerful& helpful. She is a soothing and encouraging resource on pregnancy and postpartum issues. Please know you are wonderful mamas and your babies are lucky that you are their mama.

    • Sam says...

      JINCA – I just gave my 10 month old son a bottle of formula before bed. He held onto my thumb while I fed him and looked at me with the most trusting, sleepy eyes. I gave him kisses on the forehead and he wiggled his toes, perfectly content. Formula feeding is wonderful. P.S. you’re going to be an awesome mom.

    • Adrienne says...

      Jinca, do you know what the best part of bottle feeding is? You snuggle that baby close, cradled in your arms. And their eyes just become laser focused on your face. That doesn’t happen when you breast-feed—their face is mashed into your boob. But man—that bottle allows the two of you to stare into each other’s eyes. Enjoy it. RELISH IT!

    • laura says...

      @Jinca, it sounds like your expansive love will give your children the best possible start in life! <3

    • Martina says...

      I second this! I have twins, too and I just never had enough milk – not even for one of them. So I tried to breastfeed, pumped, topped up with formula… and got more exhausted – and confused – by the day. It took me two months to just let go and switch to formula. What a relief it was! … Fast forward 9 years and I have two super healthy, allergy-free, caring, loving, outgoing and fun boys. Added bonus for our family in hindsight: My husband never felt left out and got his fair share of “milky cuddles” and bonding opportunities. :)

  38. Wink says...

    Oh, Anne, when I read what your three-year-old said about finding you rascals, I put my hand to my heart. It is all at once touching, hilarious, and profound.

  39. Annie says...

    So so true about earrings. I was also desperate to open filing cabinets and flick through thin cardboard files, pulling out information like a spy.
    I became a secretary and I always pretended…..

    • Rose says...

      I wanted to write with chalk on the blackboard and (especially) erase the blackboard in front of my class. Shortly after I became a teacher, all the blackboards at the school were replaced with whiteboards. Sigh. Good thing that wasn’t the only reason I went into teaching.

  40. A says...

    Karin, you are so spot on.

    Even as an adult woman who only wears clip on earrings, the advent of the cell phone really limits the amount of opportunities to practice being a 1940’s movie star.

    Also, “The store of my head is almost closed” should just be a sign I put behind me on zoom calls.

  41. June says...

    Enthusiastic DITTO to Olivia’s comment on showing your children that you have emotions. I’m a mom of three and find it helps everyone at every age.

    It’s really helpful to share that *even mothers* have feelings: “It hurt my feelings when you XYZ.”

    It’s also very helpful, particularly for sensitive children, to explain how you are feeling and WHY. “I’m really frustrated about a problem at work. I’m not mad at you, even if I’m mad right now. I’m sorry that I’m talking harshly right now because of it.”

    • T says...

      It’s also very important for adults to process our feelings out loud, so you know why you’re in a mood! It takes me a while to understand why a certain situation triggers me and have to take quite a few steps back to connect everything. So teaching our kids to do the same is SO important. We’ll all get less frustrated.

  42. Julia says...

    Ha the clicky shoes. As a student nurse in the Uk always soft soled shoes but the Matron… clicky shoes – sign of power

  43. Jo says...

    Oh my god, Rebecca’s mom and Karin’s clip ons😂😂😂

  44. Mkw says...

    Karin, I’m a child of the 60s. You put me smack dab into full-on reminiscing.

  45. Emily says...

    OMG that last quote about the earrings…I would 100% put a print of that at my desk.

    • Vivian says...

      A Cup of Jo quote print shop would be amazing!

  46. ew says...

    Karin, A+. There’s a scene in The Crown season four where Margaret Thatcher does that and it’s *EVERYTHING*.

    • Wink says...

      Yes! Princess Margaret, too! But the mother of all clip-on moments for me comes from The Graduate, when Mrs. Robinson impatiently chucks her earring on a restaurant table to take Benjamin’s call (from the payphone outside)!

  47. Toni says...

    I was waiting in line to pick up my daughter and a 4-year-old girl was with her mom. The little gal was crying and the mom knelt down to wipe her face but the daughter put her little hand up and said “Don’t wipe away my sads. I’m not done being sad yet.” That got me right in the gut.

    • June says...

      Love this.

    • Lauren says...

      This is amazing; thank you for sharing!

    • Sarz says...

      Oh my goodness! If I were as emotionally aware as that little girl, perhaps I wouldn’t need therapy now, ha!

    • R says...

      My heart bursts!!

  48. anne says...

    Omg the clicky shoes of teachers being the mark of true adulthood is so true. I still think of that every time I walk down a hallway.

  49. Ashley says...

    KARIN I LOVE THAT!!!

    • kat says...

      Yes! Just yesterday I went through my grandma’s jewelry and it has SO many pairs of delightfully huge clip on earrings. Now I want to put all them on.