Lately we have seen some pretty average behaviour in the media from men around the place. Behaviour that is inexcusable.
A few blogger types who also happen to be mothers of sons were spurred on by Lexi from Pottymouthmama to celebrate the males in our lives who are human beings of the ace variety.
Not surprisingly as a Mother of FIVE boys I feel it is my place to be a bit of an advocate for boys.
Boys tend to get a pretty bad wrap generally- not just when ooky things happen in the public eye but just generally. They tend to get labelled with the not-so-positive descriptives.
The first thing people say when they hear that not only do I have five children but that they are all boys is "Oh my gosh!" Cue jaws on the floor and all......
It's generally not seen as a particularly good thing. Then come the jokes about how we must of kept on trying for a girl. GUFFAW.
Only I am not laughing.
I don't find it funny. Especially when people say it in front of my crew. Do they think my lads don't understand the thinly veiled message they are delivering?
It is hurtful. To me and to my boys.
My answer to them is..... "Actually NO...we kept on trying to have more boys because boys are ACE.
SO ace in fact that we wanted FIVE of them, and look how lucky we are that our wish came true."
Cue silence as the conversation ends abruptly.
All the males that I have in my life are intelligent, kind, funny, respectful & caring people.
I aim to raise my five lads to be like that too.
So.... what do I think 'Being a Mother of a Son means?
- I think it means teaching my boys the power of words.
I talk a lot with my lads. No topic is off limits. We talk openly and honestly about anything and everything. Real words, real terms. I don't want my kids to feel embarrassed about life & to not be able to talk using real language. Sometimes I start conversations that are uneasy just to break the ice. I don't want them to be scared to keep asking questions. I don't ever want that to change although I know it is inevitable. Most of all I don't ever want my boys to stop talking. As a mother of boys I feel that teaching the power of words is one of the greatest gifts I can give.
After Year 7 camp earlier this year my 12yo came home excitedly to tell me he had met a really good person he thought would become his good friend. He told me how great he was to talk with. I asked him what they talked about. He answered 'Feminism and Philosophy and that sort of stuff. You know...the stuff I like to talk about.' Proud moment.
- I think it means teaching them about LOVE
My kids aged 15 & 13 cheered recently when the NZ parliament voted to allow Gay marriage.
My boys talk of choosing life partners - and use that term- in the understanding that the choice of a male or a female as a partner is not as important as whether or not the relationship is a loving, committed and respectful one.
- I think it is about teaching them about Life Values
I guess I see it as my job to try to impart the values that I think are important to have.
I have been thinking about this a lot lately. Thinking about what differences I teach them as boys rather than girls.
I keep settling back to the idea that I don't really think it IS different. I expect them to behave as a good human being. Not as a good 'boy'.
- I think it is about teaching them there is more than one way
I don't care for stereotypes of any kind really. I hope I have taught this to my boys. I don't think any good can come of stereotypes. Difference in our world is a glorious thing. Being able to celebrate it is a gift.
There are no rules about 'how' to be a boy. My boys all have penises, that is what makes them a boy. How they write their story about 'How to be a Boy' is up to them. So far I can see five equally wonderful and very different stories unfolding before me.
- I think it means teaching them to be kind
My boys help me stay grounded to the things that matter. They are smart & funny. So very funny. Sheesh we laugh a lot. They are helpful and thoughtful. They think and talk deeply about things that matter to them. They are kind & caring. Helpful & gentle, creative & talented. They show their love gently and unashamedly. Even the 15yo still tells me he loves me as he goes to bed.
I count myself as super lucky to be surrounded by such wonderful, loving, funny & totally fabulous human beings that are also totally fabulous BOYS.
Boys are ACE.
Here is a list of links to the other bloggers who are taking part in this.
Click on the links to read their posts that will be published over the day ~
ROASTED BEETROOT DIP:
DO you LOVE Beetroot?
I totally LOVE it.
I buy bunches and bunches of the stuff. The leaves in salad or flash fried like spinach & then I often roast the entire lot and have them in the fridge ready to use in different ways.
This is my eldest boy's favourite dip.
This recipe uses roasted beets- I roast the whole bunch but only use about 4 for the dip- leaving you leftovers for salads or other goodies!
WHAT YOU WILL NEED:
- 1 bunch beetroot
- 4 tablespoons plain Greek yoghurt
- 2 heaped teaspoons roasted Cumin seeds
- S & P
- 1 clove garlic
- Balsamic Vinegar
- EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
Preheat oven to 200C.
Trim the leaves off the top of the beets leaving about 1cm of the stalk - set the leaves aside to use in salads.
Take a large baking dish and plonk the beets into it.
Glug about 4-5 tablespoons of Balsamic vinegar, a tablespoon of EVOO & add some S&P over the beets.
Cover tightly with alfoil and pop into the oven for an hour or until the beets are soft all the way through .
While the beets are in the oven pop a heavy based pan on teh stove top and dry fry the cumin seeds over a gentle flame till you can smell their heady perfume- about 6 minutes or so. Remove and set aside.
Remove the beets from the oven and let cool.
Add the chopped beets into a food processor with the yoghurt and garlic clove.
Blitz to the consistency you like- personally I like mine to be a bit chunky still but you may like it super smooth.
Use a spatula to remove- you don't want to leave any goodness behind!- and add the cumin seeds.
Check seasoning and add S & P if necessary.
It will keep for up to four days in the fridge.