December 11, 2007

Vacationing one inch at a time

Fair trade chocolate is one of the last fair things in my life. Yes, I am blessed in many ways, but being a first time mom has brought with it some not so fair realizations. I never imagined that people would come into my home, physically, or via telephone or Internet, and tell me that what I am doing as a mother is wrong in their opinion, or make comments about how right they did things and how they never dealt with such and such, insinuating that they must have done a better job to get a baby that never cried, and always slept in her crib, and on and on and on...

Olivia is four months old now, and you would think I'd have gotten used to people's ongoing commentary and criticism, but for some reason, it still irks me. I liken it to walking into someone's home and saying, "Wow! Your couch is hideous, and it doesn't match your drapery at all... and that driftwood on your end table is so very Brady Bunch." But in actuality, that would be a more polite thing to do... insult someone's interior design over their parenting choices.

All I know is that my sweet baby may not be sleeping through the night, and she may still be nestled safely in between her father and I in, GASP! dare I say it... the family bed! but she is happy and evolving beautifully. Yesterday, she laughed from her belly for the first time... all out, hysterical and spontaneous laughter. I don't know many four month old babies who laugh for no reason and then keep giggling for ten minutes, but you can bet if I meet one who hasn't laughed by that age I won't tell her mother that Olivia had.

My vow to all mothers is, I will never judge you, tell you what I think you could be doing differently, or make you feel wrong in any way. No one loves your baby like you do and no one knows better what she needs. Period. Right or "wrong." That said, there are indeed a couple people who have supported me no matter what, and to them I say THANK YOU!

So... chocolate has become a dear friend of mine as a stay at home mom who constantly dodges the "we know better than you" bullet. Trader Joe's sells an amazing bar of Swiss Milk Chocolate that's fair trade. It's $1.99 and it can last a week, depending on how stressful the week is! All you need is one inch of the bar, as it is rich and creamy and does in one inch what most candy can't do in a whole bar. Of course, there are several other fair trade options, including Dagoba, that I keep hearing people rave about.

To learn more about fair trade, visit Make Trade Fair. This quote on their website says it all:

"Before you've finished your breakfast this morning, you'll have relied on half the world."
- Martin Luther King

Stop by this page especially if you're pressed for time.

And in the meantime, play fair.

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