Category: other blogs

Bold and Positive Girl Shirts!

By , September 19, 2013 10:58 am

My 13 year old  daughter is not a “girly-girl.”  She does not like pink.  She does not like purple.  She does not like sparkles.  She even complains that the little cap sleeves on “girls’ shirts” are not as comfy as the “normal” sleeves on boys’ clothes.  My daughter reads a lot, runs cross-country, and is determined to get her private pilot’s license on her 17th birthday.  She is the perfect customer for Girls Will Be, a store for “girl clothes without the girly.”

Here you can find unique shirts in sizes 4 through 12 with positive messages.  No “Princess” or “Spoiled Brat.”  No images of boy pop bands, Angry Birds, or teenage TV “role model” actresses.  There is also a noticeable lack of glitter, sparkle, ruffles, and spandex.

My daughter chose an airplane shirt (the plane image is actually a flock of birds) and a bold but cute dog shirt. We have a “Bold Daring Fearless Adventurous” tee on pre-order!

If you visit, be sure to read the “About” page.  The store was recently founded by two sister moms (of “non-girly” girls) and their artistic brother who designs the shirts himself.  They write:  “We hope Girls Will Be helps empower young girls to be themselves and never feel like they need to conform to the increasingly narrow definition of “girl” reflected in far too many of the clothes (and other products) marketed to them.”

I also like that this cool family maintains a blog where they showcase clothing and accessories from other stores that meet their non-girly standards.

Fortunately for the Girls Will Be team, demand is high for their products (which are all made in the United States) and you might have to pre-order and wait a bit to get the shirt you want.  The wait is worth it though since the quality and comfort-level are excellent and, most importantly, my daughter loves her unique shirts and wears them often.

There is nothing wrong with being feminine, but it is important that girls have a clothing choice.  My daughter and I wish the Girls Will Be team lots of success in their very worthy enterprise!


Fighting Unethical Children’s Advertising

By , October 22, 2008 3:17 pm

Do you ever get upset about the excess of marketing targeted at your children?  How about the sexualization of children’s toys and ads?  Even without TV, it is hard to miss the barrage of ads, “licensed characters” and sleazy or violent toys.  We see it everywhere: in children’s magazines, in the grocery stores, and even (or so I have been told) in the public schools.

Some people don’t seem to mind, and that is OK.  But if you are a parent who feels manipulated, angry and frustrated by every trip to the supermarket, toy store, or even book store, then head on over to Parents For Ethical Marketing and meet Lisa Ray, a mom who is not just complaining, but is actually trying to DO something about it!

Lisa started her website and blog in 2007.  Via her blog that began as a simple creative outlet, Lisa discovered her true passion: fighting corporate marketing targeted at children.

Now a year later, she is taking her website one step farther.  Lisa is creating a non-profit organization to help her take real action to curb unethical children’s marketing.  Her plans include educating the public via free workshops for parent groups, newsletters and her blog, Corporate Babysitter.  She also hopes to influence legislation and encourage parents to write to corporations about marketing policies that displease them.

Lisa’s goal is to raise $10,000 by Thanksgiving.  Read more here.  If you like what you read, then you can make a donation to her cause via the Parents for Ethical Marketing page at

It is so easy to sit back and complain about what displeases us, but very few people have the energy or drive to actually try and do something about it.  Thank you for taking this cause and running with it Lisa.  I applaud you!

(Thanks to and photographer Anita Patterson Peppers for this lovely photo.)

Mama Power – Peace

By , October 14, 2008 8:59 pm

As a mother, much of my daily existence is very mindless and repetitive.  I sometimes feel as though I am repeating the same messages over and over again:  “clean your room,”  “don’t pick your nose,”  “settle down,” or “say please,” are a few favorites of mine.  And of course there are also the two that I swore I would NEVER say to my children:  “we’ll see” (we all know that really means “no”), and “because I said so.” I say these too.

A tape recorder could accomplish the same job, and a robot could do the laundry, cook the meals, pick up the clutter, etc.  Apart from the loving, my daily routine doesn’t take much thought or emotional involvement.

What DOES take intelligence and feeling however, is the effort to instill in our children a sense of our values.

I dislike the term “values.”  It is overused nowadays, and often has a politically conservative connotation.  For some reason it just rubs me the wrong way, like “empower” and “proactive.”

However, the fact is, that every single one of us on this planet has “values.”  We all place emotional or intellectual importance on certain life issues.  In other words, we have principles that we hope to pass along to our children.  While we might wildly disagree on what our “values” should be, we all hope our children will eventually adopt our particular “values” and thus become “good people” (as interpreted differently by each family).

One of the lessons that I would like my children to learn is that of peace.  In my mind peace begins with tolerance and acceptance.  But I don’t want my children to simply tolerate and accept, I want them to truly love the differences that exist on this planet.  I want them to be excited about other cultures, traditions, races, religions, cuisines, languages…everything that is different from themselves and their lives.

I hope I am not rudely presuming too much by venturing to guess that most of the readers of Unplug Your Kids include some version of peace in their set of “values.”  In fact, I believe that most families around the world value peace, even those who we are told are currently “the enemy.”

We as mothers (and fathers of course, but I don’t think many fathers read Unplug Your Kids), have the world’s most important and powerful job.  We have a chance to create a peace-loving generation that celebrates differences. If every family on our planet had peace and tolerance (at the very least) as a value and actively worked to pass this along, could we eradicate war in one generation?

This is obviously a Utopian vision, but as mothers, we must remember that no president, prime minister, king, or queen has the power that we do.  When I get too caught up in dirty laundry and saying “no,” I must remind myself of this.

Like mothers in every corner of this Earth, I feel that even if my children continue to pick their noses into adulthood, I nonetheless will have done my bit for humanity if I manage to produce three enlightened and thoughtful inhabitants of our plant.


It is time again for blogger Mimi Lenox’s semi-annual BlogBlast for PeaceThursday, November 6th is the day when hundreds of bloggers worldwide (40 countries have signed on so far!) will all blog about one topic:  PEACE.  Every post will be entitled Dona Nobis Pacem (“Grant Us Peace”).  This will be my fourth time joining in.

If you hope to contribute to a new generation of peace creators and lovers, please consider joining in.  I’d love to read your thoughts on how you help your children understand that they can and should make a difference in this life.

If you want to participate, head over to Mimi’s to design your own Peace Globe (mine is up above) for your blog and Mimi’s Gallery.

I hope to read your thoughts on November 6th!

Great Book Blog!

By , September 30, 2008 10:20 pm

I have 50 (yes 50!) drafts underway, but all I have ready for tonight is a wonderful link for those of you who are interested in children’s books.  Please head on over to this great blog – Children’s Books: What, When & How to Read Them.  Tanya is a book-loving mother PLUS she works in a book store.  What more could one want?

Thankfully she somehow discovered Unplug Your Kids and left a comment on my first Chapter Books Suitable for Extra-Young Readers post.  That’s how I found her blog.

Here is Tanya’s blog tagline:

As a lover of children’s literature, mother and bookseller of 13 years, I want to put good books into kid’s hands. I share my philosophy on what makes a book good as well as book reviews and lists of great books for every reading taste and ability with a focus on new readers. I also highlight to some wonderful books that are not always on the shelf at bookstores, but might be at your library and can definitely be ordered. All books mentioned are available in paperback unless noted.

Book reviews are searchable alphabetically, or by type (for ex. Books for Boys, Book Lists-Advanced Readers, Beginning Readers, Book Lists-2nd and 3rd Grades, etc.).

I look forward to exploring Tanya’s Children’s Books blog further!

PS.  I really hope to have another chapter book post of my own up tomorrow night.

Aw Shucks … (Blush)

By , September 4, 2008 9:05 pm

Here is a catching up, but grateful post:

On August 5th, Arwen of Walk Beside Me kindly bestowed upon me a Brillante Weblog Award! Thanks so much and I am sorry I didn’t officially “accept” this sooner. You must all be tired of hearing me make excuses for my summer…but it has been busy (really).

Anyhow, thanks so much Arwen. The longer I have this blog, the more I really appreciate nice comments and gestures like this one!

Here are the rules:
1. The winner can put the logo on their blog.
2. Link to the person you received your award from.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Put links of those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message on the blogs you’ve nominated.

I am going to nominate seven of the great many nice blogs that I have “met” via my Unplugged Project. I have “met” so many great blogs through the project that it is hard to pick just seven!

Julie K in Taiwan
Bella Luna
Raising Explorers
Learning Through Living (Explore Academy)
Homeschooling Fun
My Family Loves It
Bare Baby Feet

Thank you again Arwen, it was a lovely surprise!


Kate from Homeschooling in the Garden State just sent another bit of blog love my way, an I Love Your Blog Award.

Her writeup of all her nominees was so well-done! I don’t know that I can be as entertaining, but I’ll try.

These days real life tends to get the better of my time and I don’t get around as much as I would like, but when I can, I enjoy Celtic Mommy and her projects, delicious recipes and cheerfullness. I have been following her blog with interest since its very beginning, and she is always delightful.

Again, I don’t stop in often enough, but I enjoy reading about Greenemother and her adorable daughter Emma. The Owl and the Pussycat is one of those lovely, relaxing blogs, and the photos are gorgeous!

I also like to visit Becky of Boys Rule My Life who blogs about life with three boys (well, four I guess, if you count her husband). She is raising funds right now to walk for ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) research. If you can help her meet her goal, that would be terrific. Having had an aunt with ALS, I know it is a horrible disease and a very worthy cause. Here is a link to her ALS Walk fundraising page.

Finally, whenever I need a large dose of reality accompanied by a laugh, I know I can always stop by Jen at Never a Dull Moment. She says it like it is!

Thank you Kate, you made my day!

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