OFFICIAL BLOG

Fieldnotes

Why Did the Remarried Couple with Kids Make Two Turkeys?

Published by Wednesday Martin
Women with stepchildren often find holidays stressful. How to cope...
Women with stepchildren often find holidays stressful. How to cope...

If you're a woman with stepkids, you might already know the answer. How are you and your husband or partner with kids celebrating Thanksgiving? With or without the kids? Together or apart? Your relatives, his, or both? Who's cooking?


Why back to school is harder for you than it is for your kids....

Published by Wednesday Martin

The tribe of privileged parents I study and write about in my upcoming book Primates of Park Avenue (Simon & Schuster, June 2015) mostly summers in the Hamptons. But wherever you are for June, July, and August, you may be feeling the Dreads about Labor Day approaching. Anthropology gives us new ways to understand and handle the back-to-school, post vacation, return-to-regular-life Fall segue.... Hope you will have a read!


It's Summer. Are your kids at camp?

Published by Wednesday Martin
The notion that childhood is a time for play and formalized education is new
The notion that childhood is a time for play and formalized education is new

Are your kids at camp? Did you go to camp? When I was growing up in Michigan, sleep away camp was not a big thing. But now that I'm a Manhattan mommy, I'm surrounded by parents who send their kids to "sleep away" for all or part of the summer. Day camp is popular, too. On my Psychology Today blog, I write about why we send our kids away for the summer...  


It's June! Time for Intensive Motherhood!!

Published by Wednesday Martin

I have an eye twitch as I write this. I usually focus on the ways the tribe of Manhattan women with kids I study is different from other moms across the country and around the world. But in June I am reminded of the many similarities between contemporary privileged Manhattan childhood and motherhood and regular old childhood and motherhood in the midwest where I grew up several decades ago.


An Open Letter to Glamorous Mommies Everywhere: Eat something. Please. I dare you.

Published by Wednesday Martin
Peaches Geldof, beautiful skinny mother of two. Dead person. Coincidence?
Peaches Geldof, beautiful skinny mother of two. Dead person. Coincidence?

Peaches Geldof died, possibly of starvation. Maybe something else was going on, too. But her death, which leaves her family bereft and two little boys motherless, is a springboard for thinking about high pressure, glamorous motherhood and the standards that stress women with kids and even put them in danger. Messing up your electrolytes can give you a heart attack. Did you know that?


Playground Partners Luncheon

Published by Wednesday Martin
With Beth Kojima, a career woman with four kids. In Manhattan many women are expected to balance motherhood, work outside the home and meticulous self presentation.
With Beth Kojima, a career woman with four kids. In Manhattan many women are expected to balance motherhood, work outside the home and meticulous self presentation.

The annual Playground Partners Luncheon took place at the Boathouse in Central Park recently. It was a snowy day, but that did not reduce turnout at this popular event. Like grooming behaviors among female  papio cynocephalus (savannah baboons), attending events is an affiliative, pro-social behavior that promotes group and dyadic cohesion. We're weren't picking bugs off each other, but we may as well have been. In attending these events, talking to one another and eating and drinking together, asking about outfits and kids and work, we are essentially reassuring, connecting with and touching one another.


Photo of the Day, Why I love Dutch parents, and NYC happenings

Published by Wednesday Martin
Our Dutch friend’s daughter wore this dress when we met up at the bar at the Mark Hotel. People were really surprised to see the kids there — we have created separate spheres for adults and kids in the industrialized West. How could anyone fail to notice or admire my friend’s daughter’s dress and sparkly headband?
Our Dutch friend’s daughter wore this dress when we met up at the bar at the Mark Hotel. People were really surprised to see the kids there — we have created separate spheres for adults and kids in the industrialized West. How could anyone fail to notice or admire my friend’s daughter’s dress and sparkly headband?

There is so much I love about this photo. As the mother of two boys, I swoon over everything pink, sparkly and girlie. Fortunately my youngest son used to love dress up, including princess attire. And I have twin god daughters. As to this photo, a little context: a Dutch friend was in town and we suggested a meet up at the bar at the Mark Hotel. I love the Mark Hotel. The location on E. 77th St is perfect as far as I'm concerned — the "near east side" is easy for a West Sider and gives the necessary feeling of being out of one's own neighborhood without ranging really far. I've lived at the Mark twice with my kids, each time during apartment renovations. My friend Isabel is the head concierge there, and they always take nice care of our family. (I spent one of the happiest Christmases of my life at the Mark, covered in hives, baking Christmas cookies on trays Jean-Georges Vongerichten let me borrow — the sugar cookies came out smelling like fish, which was entirely Jean-Georges's fault, but he ate them and very politely pronounced them delicious anyway, as did everyone else we shared them with--but that's another story)


Why Do We Send Photos of Our Kids as Holiday Cards?

Published by Wednesday Martin

Across the country, it's holiday card time. These cards often highlight family and particularly children. Usually the card itself is a family portrait, or a portrait of the kids. Often there are numerous photos of the kids on a single card.


Mothers to Star Magazine: Fu*k Off!

Published by Wednesday Martin
It’s open season on mothers. Especially ones in the spotlight.
It’s open season on mothers. Especially ones in the spotlight.

I used to think our national sport was football. Then I had children. And learned very quickly that in fact, our national sport is judging mothers. It starts early in the process. From the moment I conceived, it seemed, everybody had an opinion about what I ate, what I wore, what I should do. Much of it was well-intentioned--advice about how to handle morning sickness was something I really appreciated. I did NOT appreciate being told by one woman that "I was always too busy to have morning sickness." Nor did I appreciate child birth educators telling me that having an epidural would make me a bad mother.