Weekend Pics from Parenting in the Loop


Weekend Pics from Parenting in the Loop

Another weekend is upon us and we have yet another shooting to think about.

This week has been a seriously tragic one as we here in the United States watched yet another “mass shooting” take place in San Bernardino California. My gaze was riveted on the television screen as the helpers tried to assist the victims and the police tried to hunt down the shooters.

Growing up in NY, I was made aware of my surroundings at a very early age. It was necessary in order for me to remain safe from predators, who wanted to steal your purse or your life from you. Stranger danger was just a fact of my life as a city kid.

My alertness is therefore second nature, I lock everything, I look around me in garages, I carry pepper spray. But now there is a different anxiety and alertness that I live with, it permeates me from my core as I think about my granddaughter at school, my own daughters as they go about their lives and my husband as he works to save lives.

What happened in San Bernardino CAN happen anywhere at anytime!

This morning I have to share some stories with you about what we can do concerning the violence in our country and our neighborhoods.

It is serious stuff when other countries like Australia are now warning their citizens that travel to the United States is dangerous at this time of violence.

The following is a piece written by Noah Pozner’s grandmother published this weekend on her blog Farine . Noah’s life was violently ended in school at Sandy Hook. He was only six. Please read.

time to pause this weekendf you truly care, if you are not just paying lip-service to the awfulness of the moment, if you want our country to change, here is what you can do:Join a grass-root effort: Everytown for Gun Safety is a good place to start;Champion gun safety among your friends and relatives (and if you do own guns, please start at home);Call your congressmen and let them know what you expect from them;Vote with both your conscience and your heart in the next election.

Source: Another mass shooting 

My faith is important to me and prayer is part of my life but I agree there is more to solving a problem than “thoughts and prayers”.

We must take action and responsibility for making our country a safer place not just for ourselves but for our children and grandchildren. Think about what you can do…even small actions can make a difference.


Your ‘thoughts’ should be about steps to take to stop this carnage,” tweeted Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut. “Your ‘prayers’ should be for forgiveness if you do nothing — again.”A day after the California carnage, the Senate decided to do nothing, again, voting down a measure that would have made it more difficult for people on the terror watch list, felons and the mentally ill to buy guns.


Source: No More Thoughts and Prayers – The New York Times


The collective we are not doing enough! This weekend I hope some  most of us will do something to help prevent more gun violence.

Another day, another ghastly shooting in America.So far this year, the United States has averaged more than one mass shooting a day, according to the ShootingTracker website, counting cases of four or more people shot. And now we have the attack on Wednesday in San Bernardino, Calif., that killed at least 14 people.

Source: On Guns, We’re Not Even Trying – The New York Times

I know this is a stressful time of year but for some people it is an extremely sad time as well. Please take time out this weekend to think about what you can do to make a difference.

Twenty Innocent Children…Don’t Forget Them

Have You Hugged Your Children Today?


Tonight, I am reminded by my friend and fellow ChicagoNow blogger, Sheila Quirke, aka. Mary Tyler Mom that tomorrow marks two years since the horrific and violent tragedy at Sandy Hook. Twenty innocent children lost their young lives along with their teachers and others at school that day.

I am thinking of their families, their parents, siblings, grandparents and all those who knew and loved these little ones.

It makes me cry.

I can’t even imagine the utter pain that these families have suffered over the past two years and how they will continue to suffer from such a tragic loss.

Nothing is more devastating than the death of a child.

What continues to scare me to the core is the everyday violence that we have almost come to expect when turning on the news. It seems that each day since that violent shooting, there have been more and more gun related deaths.

It breaks my heart when I hear about another child that is an innocent victim of a shooting. Children should be safe in school and in their homes…they should be safe walking to and from their neighborhood school…they should be safe in playgrounds.

But sadly, they are not.

I have been following and supporting the work and progress of Sandy Hook Promise along with reading the shared stories by Daniel Barden’s dad.  Mark Barden writes so beautifully about his son, Daniel, who lost his life that day as a first grader in Newtown.

Mark Barden lovingly writes how Daniel was such a sensitive child especially when it came to the needs of others, I feel like I knew his gorgeous little boy with the beautiful smile.

I keep reading Mark’s emails and his stories, hoping against hope that somehow, some way this nightmare will go away.

It will not.

This is a “living nightmare” for Daniel’s family. However, through his sorrow, Mark and the other members of Sandy Hook Promise are trying to make a difference with their work surrounding gun control.

I support Sandy Hook Promise and I pray that others will support their work too. It will not bring back their little ones but it hopefully will prevent some other families from suffering a similar tragedy caused by someone with a gun.

Sheila has written a post at ChicagoNow that I recommend reading. It is not easy to ponder the events of this horrible day but if we do not remember our past we will be forced to repeat it.

Thank you Sheila for your thoughtful words.

Two years ago tonight, twenty families in Newtown, Connecticut tucked their first graders into bed for the very last time.  These children got on their pajamas, some of them might have bathed, they brushed their teeth, complaining about it, I imagine.  Their moms and dads might have read them books and sung them songs.  And then, for the very last time, they turned out the light and said. “Good night.”

via Read This Before You Tuck Your Children Into Bed Tonight | Mary Tyler Mom.

Six Months Since Sandy Hook



I Promise to honor the 26 lives lost at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

I Promise to do everything I can to encourage and support common sense solutions that make my community and our country safer from similar acts of violence.


Today is six months since 26 people were brutally murdered at Sandy Hook School. Twenty of those who died were small children.

We must not forget them.


Please take a moment to read about Sandy Hook Promise and do what you can to remember all these victims and their forever grieving families.

Noah Posner, a little boy who died in his classroom that day is honored by his grandmother in her heartfelt writing on her blog….Farine.

Go there if you can and share his grandmother’s painful moments.

How Do Parents Go On When Their Child is Murdered?


The neighbor looked at the clock and saw it was almost 8:30, time to walk her daughter to the bus. “I have to go,” she said, hugging the Bardens, leaving them at the kitchen table. Jackie poured more coffee. Mark checked his phone messages. Jackie walked outside to get the mail and brought it into the living room. Mark opened a package from Minnesota that contained a Sherpa blanket and a note that read: “We will never forget.”


The school bus came. The school bus went.


“What do you want to do?” Mark asked, and in that moment, the answer to both of them was clear.


“What can we do?” Jackie said.


“Nothing,” Mark said, and he sank down next to her on the couch.

via After Newtown shooting, mourning parents enter into the

lonely quiet – The Washington Post.


I hope you will read this entire piece from The Washington Post and commit yourself to making difference when it comes to gun ownership in the United States.

There must be stronger gun regulation…not that it will prevent all of the violence but it hopeful could certainly prevent some.

The Bardens fight for gun controls will be a long one that will constantly remind them of that horrible day in December, 2012 when their beloved son died at the hands of a mass murderer in what was supposed to be a safe haven ….his first grade classroom.

I am not sure I could be as strong as they have been in their efforts on the political scene…it just seems so painful, futile and frustrating in many ways, reopening a wound that will never really heal.

This type of fight is truly never ending…it is a battle that leads to more frustration on some days than any parent, who has lost a child should have to endure.

Remembering back to 1981, when President Reagan and Jim Brady were shot outside a hotel in Washington, D.C….there was outrage…Jim Brady and his wife battled long and hard to have the Brady Bill passed.

It was finally signed into law by President Clinton in 1993!

The Brady Bill was a start, but over the years it has not proven to be all that effective.

The Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act (Pub.L. 103–159, 107 Stat. 1536, enacted November 30, 1993) is an Act of the United States Congress that instituted federal background checks on firearm purchasers in the United States.

It was signed into law by President Bill Clinton on November 30, 1993, and went into effect on February 28, 1994. The Act was named after James Brady, who was shot by John Hinckley, Jr. during an attempted assassination of President Ronald Reagan on March 30, 1981.

via Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.


I worry for the Bardens, that without the clout of many of us they will continue to suffer more and more as they attempt to have an effect on the gun lobby.

How can any of us help?

How do you really feel about guns?

The Barden family’s pain should not go unnoticed when it comes to this issue..

the loss of their beloved son Daniel is a horrible tragedy

that should never have happened…

I am heartsick after reading their story in the Washington Post…

knowing that nothing can soothe their pain…

if I had the opportunity I would wrap my arms around them

but they would be easing my sadness not the other way around…

there is nothing that can justify the death of a child…

to surviving parents and family…



Moms can be #LouderThanGuns


Ever since the Newtown tragedy, I have been reading about gun control and the arguments that have ensued.

Today, I am joining a group of moms, who are #LouderthanGuns because after becoming a blogger as a grandmother, I really believe that the power behind moms is a phenomenon that is underrated.

We can make a huge difference in whether or not some type of gun control gets passed in the near future and I believe that in our own way, we must join this cause if gun control is going to happen in a timely manner.

Moms have to be #LouderThanGuns if we are to effect any type of gun control in the wake of this horrendous tragedy.

No one should have to suffer the loss of a family member to gun violence.

After Sandy Hook, I wrote a post...Coping with life and death… about my feelings and reactions to this horrible event.

As a mother, grandmother, nurse and social worker, I have helped many people in different stages of grief and at times, I have grieved along with them. The loss of a child is one of the saddest losses of all…no child should pre-decease their parent.

My heart goes out to the families in Newtown. We must not forget these innocent angels so please consider joining #LouderthanGuns and work towards gun control.