Motherhood

On Being a Great Aunt

How to Be a Great Aunt

Growing up, I never felt compelled to be a mom like many of my friends. Instead, I felt called to be an aunt. I love this quote by Irish poet Robert Lynd: “There is something in the relationship between aunts and their nephews and nieces that is quite unlike any other. In the company of their aunts, nephews and nieces know that they are privileged persons. The bonds of duty are somehow relaxed: they have no obligations but to be happy.” That’s what I wanted growing up — to be the person in kids’ lives whose sole job is to make them feel loved and safe. So, we asked nine aunts what it’s like to play this role. Here are their funny, thoughtful answers…

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Design

Have a Wonderful Weekend.

Lena Corwin beach photo

What are you up to this weekend? We are heading to Northern California to visit my twin sister, and we’ll be sharing some photos on Instagram, if you’d like to see. We are excited to eat giant burritos and put our feet in the ocean. Have a good one, and here are a few fun links from around the web…

America has never been so desperate for tomato season.

The Little Women trailer looks fantastic. (Saoirse and Timothée!)

I’m reading the best best best book right now, and can’t wait to go home and read it.

Love this sweet and vulnerable personal ad for friends.

This new Muslim lifestyle brand is making multipurpose prayer mats.

Up and up.

How cool are these 1970’s style back-to-school shoes?

Gymnast Simone Biles sets records right and left!

Dermstore’s HUGE sale starts today. This spray is top of my list, and I know you guys love this.

A Dutch summer rite: children let loose in the night woods. “Groups of children, generally pre-teenagers, are deposited in a forest and expected to find their way back to base. It is meant to be challenging, and they often stagger in at 2 or 3 in the morning.” (New York Times)

Beyonce’s Vogue cover photo was acquired by the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery.

Zucchini quesadillas.

And we shared our family meal plan on the Kitchn. (What are your go-to dinners?)

Plus, two reader comments:

Says Mel on bedtime routine: “I have a rule with my husband (the night owl) that he can’t talk to me about ‘real things’ after 8 p.m., which is when our toddler goes to bed. I just want to eat chocolate, binge Parks and Rec and maybe have sexy time. Him? ‘Where do we see ourselves in five years? Should we put another $10k down on the mortgage or sell the house and move further out of the city? Did I tell you about that political/economic/cultural/complicated thing I heard on NPR.’ Me… ugh pass the chocolate and maybe take off your clothes but please for the love of God stop talking about hard things.

Says Lora on I Thought I’d Accepted My Body; Then I Got Pregnant: “I’m currently in my second pregnancy, and my favorite thing has been the utter delight my toddler daughter has in my changing body. Every day, she’ll lift my shirt and pat my belly. She’ll then lift her shirt and bump her belly into my pregnant belly. She’ll then make the rounds with anyone in the room. I love witnessing family members and friends of all shapes/sizes happily lift their shirts to connect with her in this playful, belly-tastic way. The self-consciousness brought on by arbitrary cultural expectations always melts in the face of a toddler’s obvious joy in seeing all the bellies!”

Have a good one. xoxo

(Photo by Lena Corwin.)