Thursday, March 31, 2005

Thankful Thursday

"I do not cease to give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers."
Ephesians 1:16

written by kristen, at 9:48 AM | leave your mark |
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Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Gary Ezzo and Babywise

This post was inspired by a comment on a previous post.

I do know that there are godly and loving parents who choose to use the Babywise program, but there have been major concerns raised that have been well-documented at the website.

Concerns about Gary Ezzo himself
He has been under church discipline multiple times, and is currently excommunicated from an evangelical church in California, which he attended before moving to the east coast. He has been caught in habitual lies about a wide variety of things, including inventing degrees he did not earn (including GPAs!) for a job application and to publishers. All of this occured since his parenting ministry began. In his writings, Gary Ezzo lists one of his creditials as being "a successful parent" but the first word he used to describe his relationship with his children was cordial, and his son-in-law embezzled $500,000 from his company while employed there. In 2001, Multnomah, the former publisher, dropped Ezzo's very lucrative books over concerns about medical misinformation and Ezzo's character. Many prominent evangelical Christians have publically stated concerns about Ezzo and the Babywise material including Dr. James Dobson, Dr. John McArthur, Dr. Philip Ryken and Tedd Tripp.

Beyond all of this, Gary Ezzo has no medical background whatsoever (no undergraduate degree and a master's degree in ministry from a program designed for non-college graduates already active in ministry work.) Growing Families International, the Ezzo's company, has claimed that Anne Marie Ezzo has a pediatric nursing background, but no coursework or degrees have ever been cited. Babywise is a secularized version of Ezzo's Christian Preperation for Parenting material (now retitled Along the Infant Way). This was in it's third edition before the first edition of Babywise was published, and the medical content is virtually the same, so Dr. Bucknam is NOT a true co-author, but merely a name slapped on to add credibility to the Babywise program.

Concerns about Babywise
There have been numerous revisions and new editions of Babywise (P4P, etc.) in the past eighteen years they have been distributed. Almost one per year. Why all the changes if the materials are so good and Ezzo claims that the message behind them has remained the same? Because the books have been linked to dehydration and failure to thrive in infants and the American Academy of Pediatrics has come out against Ezzo and pointed out that his feeding schedules do not meet their guidelines for breastfeeding. Here is a comparison of the AAP infant care advice to Babywise. So, he's changed his tune, shortening the minimum time between feedings listed in his books, etc. But a good deal of the core concerns the AAP have raised have remained the same throught all the changes.

Numerous news reports and individual testimonies have shown the medical problems intelligent and devoted families have encountered because of using Babywise. Here are more testimonials.

Having read most of Babywise (the latest edition, it was given to me), a big concern for me is the Attachment Parenting strawman and misinformation he provides about other parenting philosophies. Over and over again in the book he talks about how every cry doesn't mean that a baby is hungry and how demand feeders just put the baby to the breast for any cry. I know LOTS of moms who demand feed, and no one does that. He has the parallel between the cousins, Marisa and Chelsea. Chelsea is parented by Babywise and is basically perfect. Marisa is APed and is basically a terror -- can't be put down, can't be left, wakes up all night, etc. My 8.5 month old has never had any seperation anxiety and loves to be babysat because she is a people person. The three children I have seen firsthand this year with severe seperation anxiety were all Babywised and scream the entire time their mothers are out of the room. There is no parenting philosophy with guarantees about personality and all of the other factors! I carry my daughter around in a sling all the time, we have co-slept and put our daughter in a crib and car seat to sleep, she night-weaned on her own and sleeps through the night (12 hours+) when she's not teething. She started sleeping 5-6 hours before three months, without any crib-crying. Several Babywise mothers I know assumed that I babywised because my child is so happy and sleeps through the night, because they thought un-babywised babies didn't do that. Seriously. And that's just silly. Children were happy and well-adjusted for millenia before Gary Ezzo was born.

Gary Ezzo has said some pretty crazy stuff. In regards to letting children cry themselves to sleep, the Ezzos say, "God is not sitting on His throne waiting to jump up at our every cry, trying to prove that He loves us." They cite Christ crying out to the father in Matthew 27:46: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" as proof of this. What sort of a parallel is that? See this series on things Ezzo says for more crazy quotes: 1, 2, 3, 4.

My philosophy of parenting an infant is that I am serving my child in a Christ-like fashion. She is one of the least of these, small and frail, helpless and dependent. I don't manage her, I serve her as a fellow human being and a sister in Christ through baptism. Sometimes that means that if she is bothered by teething pain, I have to get out of bed to comfort her. Sometimes that means that I need to feed her because she's hungry, even if I just fed her two hours ago and have a whole list of chores to do.

But, there is freedom in Christ as far as parenting philosophies go, and if knowing all of this about Gary Ezzo and Babywise you still chose to follow his advice, that's your choice and I respect that. I do think it is important for Christians to know the rest of the story about Gary Ezzo before they chose to use his books.

written by kristen, at 12:05 PM | leave your mark |
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Saturday, March 26, 2005

He is Risen!

This joyful Eastertide,
away with sin and sorrow!
My Love, the Crucified,
hath sprung to life this morrow.

Had Christ, that once was slain,
ne'er burst his three-day prison,
our faith had been in vain;
but now is Christ arisen,
arisen, arisen, arisen!

My flesh in hope shall rest,
and for a season slumber,
till trump from east to west
shall wake the dead in number.

Had Christ, that once was slain,
ne'er burst his three-day prison,
our faith had been in vain;
but now is Christ arisen,
arisen, arisen, arisen!

Death's flood hath lost its chill,
since Jesus crossed the river:
Lover of souls, from ill
my passing soul deliver.

Had Christ, that once was slain,
ne'er burst his three-day prison,
our faith had been in vain;
but now is Christ arisen,
arisen, arisen, arisen!

written by kristen, at 11:31 PM | leave your mark |
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Thursday, March 24, 2005

Maundy Thursday Service

Kristen, Kate, and I attended the Maundy Thursday service at St. Matthias, our local ECUSA parish. Towards the end of it, during the preparation for communion, Kate began to get fussy. As per our custom, I picked her up and walked toward the back row to pace behind the last pew -- she loves to walk around, hates to sit still. What do I hear but the rector shouting from the altar, "You don't need to take out the baby; she's fine!"

I'm beginning to really like this church. It nearly broke my heart when I had to deny his offer of communion to Kate during the Ash Wednesday service.

written by michael, at 9:06 PM | leave your mark |
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Something for You Pregnant Bloggers

I highly recommend that you have a birth plan, to communicate your wishes to the hospital staff. Even if you discuss something with your doctor, it needs to be on paper and signed by the doctor for nurses and others that will care for you. The format of our birth plan was modeled after one we were shown in our childbirth class. It is very focused. We researched and tried to cut out everything that was already hospital policy (Mike getting to be there if I had a caesarean, etc.) so that it would be short and to the point. Anyhow, all of our nurses took time to compliment it and said that it was one of the most useful ones they had seen.

written by kristen, at 11:27 AM | leave your mark |
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Thankful Thursday

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name.
1 Chronicles 29:13

written by kristen, at 10:45 AM | leave your mark |
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Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Around the Blogosphere

We've got new links.

Bunnie lays out the facts of the Terri Schiavo case.

Richard got video of Nate Wilson talking about the Shroud of Turin on World News Tonight.

TulipGirl is talking about Galatians, Martin Luther and parenting.

There are so many blogging pregnant mommas!

written by kristen, at 11:35 AM | leave your mark |
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Monday, March 21, 2005

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday to You!
Happy Birthday to You!
Happy Birthday dear Michael!
Happy Birthday to You!

written by kristen, at 4:18 PM | leave your mark |
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Friday, March 18, 2005

Sale Alert!

Moms, Dads, Grandparents, etc. -- I have had my eye on this for Kate for several weeks. Then I remembered we had $17 in Toys 'R Us gift cards so I went by to pick one up today. They are having a buy one Little Tikes toy for $19.99 or less, get a second of equal or lesser value free. So we got her one of these for free. Sale ends tomorrow.

written by kristen, at 2:05 PM | leave your mark |
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Thursday, March 17, 2005

Thankful Thursday

"Let them give thanks to the LORD for his unfailing love
and his wonderful deeds for men.
Let them sacrifice thank offerings
and tell of his works with songs of joy."
Psalm 107:21-22

written by kristen, at 10:47 PM | leave your mark |
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St. Patrick's Day

Happy St. Patrick's Day. It snowed here, and I haven't had a McDonald's Shamrock shake since the early '90s, but otherwise, it was pretty good. I made corned beef.

written by kristen, at 7:08 PM | leave your mark |
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Wednesday, March 16, 2005

One more reminder

Remember to fill out your bracket and join our tournament challenge group before noon on Thursday!

written by kristen, at 8:57 AM | leave your mark |
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Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Recent Reads

Glittering Images and Glamorous Powers by Susan Howatch (8) I really enjoyed these novels, which are the first two in Howatch's Starbridge series, focusing on Anglican clergy. She writes well, and the characters are compelling. They are my favorite sort of novel -- not difficult to read, but not insulting to my intelligence, either. I preferred Glittering Images to Glamorous Powers, but they were both good. There is material in them I wouldn't want a young teen to read, so I recommend them for adults only. For the record, I'm a little harder with fiction than non-fiction, as far as rating goes, because there is so much good and beneficial fiction. (Borrowed from the library.)

TwentySomeone by Craig Dunham & Doug Serven (10) I found this to be a very helpful and worthwhile book. It should be required reading for Christians about to graduate from college. There is a great deal of wisdom on a wide variety of topics, presented in a fun and engaging way. I am a footnote fiend (whoever invented endnotes ought to be tarred and feathered) and they make good use of footnoting, which earned them bonus points. I guess at 23, I am in the target audience for the book, but I did all of the major life transitions of a twentysomething in six months (decided on a career, found a job, graduated from college, got engaged, planned a wedding, got married, moved halfway across the country away from friends and family, started job, got pregnant...) so a lot of what they said, I'd already learned from experience. But I figured as much, and read it more from the perspective of "would I recommend this to my sisters and others when they are facing these things?" than anything else. Not that I didn't learn things from the book, but you know what I mean. There is a great deal of specific advice in the book, and as expected, I don't agree with each and every piece of it, but I do agree with the vast majority, so I'd recommend it without hesitation. In fact, I've already recommended it, and am passing it along to a good friend tomorrow. (Borrowed from the library.)

written by kristen, at 12:58 PM | leave your mark |
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Sunday, March 13, 2005

All March Madness, All the Time

Okay, we're making it a tradition. This Classical Life is sponsoring its second ESPN Tournament Challenge group. Dawn Garrett took everyone to town last year :o) Make a bracket (it's fun! it uses flash!) and submit it to the group. For now, only you are able see it and you are permitted to revise it until the games begin. Then, everyone can watch as the tournament unfolds to see who has the most accurate bracket predictions. ESPN is giving out prizes, and what the heck, we might too! You can make multiple brackets, but only submit ONE to our group, please.

You'll have to register with ESPN if you haven't already. Click here to join our group. The password is "tclblog" (no quotation marks). Good luck! (And Go Heels!)

written by kristen, at 11:45 PM | leave your mark |
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Saturday, March 12, 2005

Basketball Madness

ACC Basketball is so fantastic. I've tried to keep my basketball enthusiasm to a dull roar on the blog this year (remember last year when we had the schedules/results on the side bars?). However, it's March, and I can't contain myself any longer. Carolina takes on Georgia Tech in the conference semifinal in just a few minutes and I am pumped, even in my sick state. I have been trying to explain ACC fever to Mike, now that we live in ACC country, and have only been able to point to the results, not the full reasoning. Results like the Wake County public schools (of which I am an alumna) always have a teacher work day on tournament Friday so kids can sit at home and watch the games without penalty. But my almost eighty year old grandma really helped me to understand it best. She is from Pennsylvania and has wintered with our family for the past few years. She has never shown any interest in any televised sport other than the NFL. Yesterday, she came home from the senior center mid-game and started asking how we (Tar Heels) were doing, etc. and making comments. Mike and I asked, "When did you get interested in Carolina Basketball, grandma?" She replied with a wave of her hand. "Living here, I can't help myself!" It's contagious.

written by kristen, at 1:34 PM | leave your mark |
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Sick, Sick, Sick

We all keep getting sick. Please pray that it leaves us! I am so tired of being sick, and taking care of sick family members. I am a terrible sick person. Luckily, we were already in North Carolina for a few days for spring break and my family really helped take care of Kate since I was feeling bad.

written by kristen, at 1:31 PM | leave your mark |
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Thursday, March 10, 2005

Thankful Thursday

"Oh give thanks to the LORD; call upon his name;
make known his deeds among the peoples!"
I Chronicles 16:8

written by kristen, at 8:53 AM | leave your mark |
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Monday, March 07, 2005

High Five

Carolina beats dook and captures ACC regular season title... Yessssss.

written by kristen, at 12:34 AM | leave your mark |
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Saturday, March 05, 2005


I just read a really good piece by Andrew Sullivan, "iPod World: The End of Society?".
I was visiting New York City last week and noticed something I'd never thought I'd say about the big city. Yes, nightlife is pretty much dead (and I'm in no way the first to notice that). But daylife - that insane mishmash of yells, chatter, clatter, hustle and chutzpah that makes New York the urban equivalent of methamphetamine - was also a little different. It was just a little quieter. Yes, the suburbanization of Manhattan is now far-gone, its downtown a Disney-like string of malls, riverside parks, and pretty upper-middle-class villages. But there was something else as well. And as I looked across the throngs on the pavements, I began to see why. There were little white wires hanging down from their ears, tucked into pockets or purses or jackets. The eyes were a little vacant. Each was in his or her own little musical world, walking to their own soundtrack, stars in their own music video, almost oblivious to the world around them. These are the iPod people.


Now I have my iTunes in my iMac for my iPod in my iWorld. It's Narcissus' heaven: we've finally put the "i" into Me.
It does seem that the iWorld being created by iPods, cell phones, RSS feeds, etc... is very impersonal and therefore, very untrinitarian.

What is the appropriate Christian response?

written by michael, at 11:19 PM | leave your mark |
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Spring Break

Lazy days. I love it!

written by kristen, at 9:30 PM | leave your mark |
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Thursday, March 03, 2005

Thankful Thursday

Kelly has hosted the Thankful Thursday since July, which is an opportunity for people to list three things they are thankful for each week in the comments of her blog. I'm going to host temporarily on her behalf.

"Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever." Psalm 106:1

written by kristen, at 8:21 AM | leave your mark |
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Wednesday, March 02, 2005

Clerical Collars

Does anyone know where one might be able to find an episcopal-like collar?

One of my students is in a play and needs one this Friday. I believe he is the priest in "A Little Mermaid", or something along those lines.

written by michael, at 9:38 AM | leave your mark |
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Lilypie Baby Days

This Classical Life is a website designed and operated by Michael and Kristen. We'd like to thank HostPC, who graciously accepts our money in return for hosting our domain; Blogger, who allows us to make comments and have fun, all the while they get rich soaking up the money they received from Google -- Big Brother's best friend; Jon Barlow, the created of Sensus Plenior, the best darn commenting software around -- believe us, we checked!

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