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PIZZA PIZZA!

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I had a major hankering for pizza on Saturday but there was one big problem:  I didn’t have any in the house.  So I whipped up this healthier alternative.  I love this meal and have already made it again! 

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Here’s what you need:

 

Two slices of toast (I used Udi’s)

About 1/4 cup goat cheese

7 cherry tomatoes

Small handful of frozen spinach

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Toast two slices of bed.  Meanwhile, slice the cherry tomatoes four ways, and then, in a small pan, cook them on medium until they start to wilt.  Add in the spinach and cook for another minute or so; dump the goat cheese on top and stir it all on top.  Pour the cheesy mix on top of the toast and – TADA!  You’re done.  It takes less than 5 minutes from start to finish. 

 

The best part is that Henry saw my plate and remarked, “Mommy’s pizza!”  I had to laugh because you know a ‘healthy’ version of a real dish is a winner when a toddler correctly IDs it. 

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Fun Debate:  Cool at 13, Adrift at 23

 

I read this article on the New York Times with interest:  Cool at 13, Adrift at 23.  I thought it would be a fun debate topic for the blog! 

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Kristien and I have been having this debate for year:  Do we want our kids to be ‘cool,’ grown-up, and very popular or more ‘dorky,’ wholesome, and with just a few close friends?  (Side note:  We realize that we don’t really have control over this; it’s just a discussion about childhood v. growing up that we like to have).  We both saw the NY Times article and simultaneously e-mailed it to each other! 

 

The article basically states that kids who are seen as ‘fast track’ and cool in middle school may eventually experience a social status crash, as they ‘lose their way’ and end up more likely to do drugs and engage in criminal behavior.  Note: ‘cool kid’ status is a predilection, not a predictor, of these behaviors – there are always cool kids who end up super successful.  I’ve personally seen this go both ways. 

 

So – here’s the debate questions.  In general, do you think cool kids experience a social status crash or do they always rule the roost?  Do dorky kids end up being in charge?  Would you rather your kids be super cool or a little dorky?  <— Side note: I use the label ‘dorky’ lovingly!

{ 40 comments }

 

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  • Coco June 30, 2014, 3:20 pm

    I’m 26 and 8 years out of high school. A lot of the “cool kids” I knew in high school are still pretty much stuck in high school. Same clique-ish group of friends, never branched out, all went to the same college, and a lot of them aren’t doing too much with their lives now that the “glory days” are over. Now, this obviously isn’t generalizable to everyone, but just my experience with most.

    I was not so cool growing up (glasses AND braces, double whammy!), and now I feel like I am successful with a steady job, a house I just purchased, and about to get married. I also branched out and went to a college where I knew NO ONE, and it taught me to be friendly and meet lots of people, which is a great skill in the world and the workplace. So I like to think I’m a dork who “made it”! haha

    Reply
    • Melissa June 30, 2014, 4:37 pm

      I could have written most of this comment, minus the glasses and braces…I’ll replace it with “band” LOL

      Reply
  • Laura June 30, 2014, 3:28 pm

    Funny debate! At 29, I know all too many “cool kids” that just… haven’t “thrived” (to put it nicely ;). I, OBVIOUSLY, want my (22 weeks baked) future baby girl and her siblings to have friends, but… being cool in middle/high school is so over-rated. Be sporty, be smart… no need to be “cool” :) [Oh! And I feel that the small group of "cool" kids tend to be mean to maintain their standing... mean is the worst.]

    Reply
  • Tricia June 30, 2014, 3:44 pm

    Definitely dorky… And not because I was haha. But I just think the cool kids are more concerned with images and appearances. Childhood is so so so short. I want my kids to enjoy it as long as possible and put the “cool” stuff off until they’re older.

    Reply
  • Amisha June 30, 2014, 4:20 pm

    It really could go either way. I was an outcast growing up, and I still sometimes feel shy in social settings where I don’t know many people. However, you grow up and get more confident. I honestly don’t care if my son is cool or middle of the road. I don’t want him to be too dorky though, because sometimes you carry that with you throughout life. The only thing I can hope for is that we can instill enough confidence and intellect in him to not allow his social status to impact his mind-set. You can be dorky and still be confident, and you can be super cool and still be down on yourself. It’s your self identity that matters.

    Reply
  • Melissa June 30, 2014, 4:34 pm

    I want my future unborn child(ren) to be successful in life–socially well-adjusted AND a productive member of society. Like a few people have already mentioned above a lot of the “super cool” kids seemed to “flame out” after HS. Have you seen Glee when Finn says “High School Hero, Life Zero”? lol SO TRUE in many (though not all) cases.

    I like to think that I was “socially adaptable” during MS and HS–I could relate to people regardless of status or clique and had friends in a lot of different groups–but that didn’t earn me any “cool” points. Quite the opposite, in fact. Not having a clique was probably seen as “socially damaging”–I distinctly remembering a particular jack hole telling me “You don’t have a group because no one wants you” (said jack hole is currently 35 and working at the home town movie theater–and not as a manager–, but I digress). By not having anyone define that identity for me, I was forced to create my own and I truly think that has helped me as an adult—I’ve moved places where I knew no one and forged relationships and took both personal and professional risks–and I think I’m pretty darn successful by most “standards” and I can also look myself in the mirror and know I haven’t compromised myself in order to get there. I’ve had to work hard and I haven’t had anyone “propping me up” along the way, if you know what I mean.

    Sorry to go off on a soap box but the “cool kid” bullying was so horrible (slam books, anyone?) and rarely were the kids seen as “socially in charge” also decent to anyone outside of their group. I think that’s why those tight networks stay intact for so long because that type of person/personality has a really hard time entering a new, unknown structure and not automatically being “alpha” (either professionally or personally)

    Reply
  • Avery @ Young Aspirations June 30, 2014, 4:47 pm

    My husband and I have a 6 week old and we have this discussion ALL the time! I find it really interesting. Personally, while I too have seen this go both ways I’ve seen SO many more of the “popular” kids from middle/high school end up jobless, into trouble, drugs, dropping out of school, in unhealthy relationships (many that mimic those they had in high school), or sadly even committing suicide. My husband was one of the popular kids – played all the sports, dated the popular girls, etc. etc. While now he’s an amazing and talented hardworking husband and father he tells me he struggled right out of high school with depression and making bad choices and really struggled sort of determining what kind of person he was and what crowd he was a part of. I was a little dorkier growing up – not a complete “dork” (I think) but definitely somewhere in the middle and not a “popular” kid by any means. Even though I had a couple friends who were in that crowd, I always felt left out and eventually gave up trying to be their friend and just did my own thing with my non popular but way cooler friends (best decision ever). While I had my “bad choice” moments I didn’t have nearly the type of struggle my husband had in high school or college, and I think so much of my personality was carved early on in making the decision to NOT try to be a part of that crowd and just be who I was. Being only 24 now I am still “watching” some of these people and where they’ve gone/what they’ve done since middle/high school days. Many of them went to college with me, but I noticed they never really branched out and made many new friends – it was like high school all over again but in a different place! I would love it if my daughter was a “dork” as long as she was being herself! My biggest desire is that she doesn’t just mimic the personalities and behaviors of everyone else! :)

    Reply
  • Avery @ Young Aspirations June 30, 2014, 4:52 pm

    I’m super interested to know if anyone would actually define themselves as one of the popular kids? Or if typical high school insecurity would keep them from thinking they were really as “popular” as everyone else saw them maybe? Just curious!

    Reply
    • Caitlin June 30, 2014, 4:55 pm

      That’s a good question – any popular kids wanna weigh in? Its okay to be popular ;)

      Reply
    • Lori June 30, 2014, 6:07 pm

      I definitely hung out with the popular kids, so I guess I was popular by default, though I had very low self esteem so I never felt like I truly fit, questioned whether people really liked me, yada yada. I was popular, but didn’t feel that way inside. Anyway, I made LOTS of bad choices, but thankfully met and fell in love with someone I didn’t go to high school with, and though it took a long time, I turned my life around. A ton of the people I was friends with in school are still a clique, and while I wouldn’t call them unsuccessful or anything, a lot of them I do sort of look at as losers because they seem like they have barely moved on, still partying a lot and stuff.
      I don’t want my kids to be like I was, in so many ways. That’s for sure.

      Reply
    • Liza June 30, 2014, 6:53 pm

      I was prom queen, homecoming queen, had tons of friends, etc. My brother was also very popular. It’s not something I’m proud of though. I wasn’t mean or anything, I just think people assume you are a certain way. When I was in medical school I had a supervising doctor tell me to get glasses, dye my hair (it was blond) and wear it in a ponytail because I “looked like a nurse, not a doctor.” This was only after someone outed me as prom queen though. Before that he hadn’t said anything about my appearance.

      Reply
      • Caitlin June 30, 2014, 7:12 pm

        I can’t believe a doctor said that to you. What an asshole!

        Reply
        • Ashley June 30, 2014, 8:57 pm

          This is a sad reality. I’ve read studies that have found that (for optimal salary), women need to be attractive, but not too attractive. Unattractive women don’t get paid as much as attractive women, but if you’re TOO attractive then people think you’re dumb. Dark hair women also get paid more than blonde women. I’m naturally blonde and actually went so far as to die my hair brown when I went on the job market. I’ll never know if it really made a difference, but I figured it couldn’t hurt.

          Reply
          • Caitlin June 30, 2014, 9:09 pm

            Uhhhh that makes me super sick. I’m so sorry you had to confront that!

          • kyla July 1, 2014, 11:02 am

            I’ll vouch for this. I am a soon to be 25 year old female and I work as a consultant dietitian in nursing homes. I was at a new facility and “they” told my boss I was unfriendly( if charting on patients for several hours is deemed “unfriendly” then I am so screwed). My boss’s advice to me was that I need to be overtly nice because as she put it” You’re pretty, young, and blonde. When people are insecure they take it out on those that make them feel insecure”. So, now it’s “my fault” for being who I am. Total bs.

  • mary @ minutes per mile June 30, 2014, 4:54 pm

    toasting a bed! that made me laugh :). hmmm, i don’t know about the cool kids debate. i guess the kids that are cool for the wrong reasons (like being an idiot) usually don’t turn out too well, but if you’re “cool” because you’re smart and nice, then i wouldn’t mind if my kids turned out that way!

    Reply
  • Carol June 30, 2014, 5:13 pm

    As a teacher of students in grades K-8, I find it interesting that I can tell who the popular kids are right away. I see the same traits in a second grader that I see in a 14 year old. They are wearing all the name brand clothing. They have lots of people around them, and they are probably whispering something to someone they won’t be friends with next week.
    Thinking back to high school, I was not a “popular kid”. I was friends with everyone, I did what I was supposed to, and was not really friends with the popular crowd. I talked to some of them, but most of them would not give me the time of day.
    The popular crowd I went to high school with has never moved away from home, most went to the same college or started working for the same company right away, and some even married each other. I am glad to have moved away from home, I have been married for 8 years, and I have a pretty successful job.
    I agree with the points made in the article, just based on what I see every day in the schools I work in. Popular kids are always popular until they make a bad decision. The “dorky” kids are always “dorky” until they find their place. Then they shine.

    Reply
  • Andrea June 30, 2014, 5:14 pm

    Oooh! Since you asked, I’d love to weigh in. At the risk of sounding like a total snob, I was definitely a “popular kid” in elementary and high school. I wasn’t in the group that did drugs or skipped school, but I did have a lot of friends, went to parties, dated the high school quarterback…etc. I never “burned out” or “crashed”….I got really good grades and was generally a good kid! Now, I’m in my final year of medical school and am less than a year away from becoming a doctor, so I think that’s something to be pretty proud of. As for my children, I hate to say it but I’d prefer they be popular – I think it’s just much easier life as a kid/teenager. I loved my childhood and teen years. Naturally, being well-liked by your peers gives you confidence, and I’ve carried that confidence through into other areas of my life. However, if my kids are the loner type and completely happy with that type of life, then I would be completely happy for them as well. I would just hate for them to be loners and constantly be yearning to be “popular”.

    Reply
    • Ashley J. June 30, 2014, 9:01 pm

      Andrea makes a really good point about it being easier for the kids who are considered popular. I think the same thing about if my kids were to be gay. I am going to love my children 100% regardless and their sexual orientation or sexual preference doesn’t matter to me in that regard. But would I hope or wish for them to be gay? Absolutely not because we know that life is SO MUCH HARDER for people who are gay. They have higher rates of depression, anxiety, suicide, higher likelihood of being bullied, and the list goes on. For my children’s general wellbeing and happiness, I want them to be popular enough. They don’t have to be the top echelon or anything, but I’d prefer for them to be a little on the popular side rather than being sad, lonely, depressed and/or bullied at school. That would be awful : (

      Reply
  • Lori June 30, 2014, 6:25 pm

    This is a really tough question. So many factors come into play. I knew a lot of very popular kids who were A+ students, didn’t skip school, didn’t go to college based on where their friends were going, became successful, etc… But then there was the popular crowd that I was part of, that drank, did drugs, skipped school, didn’t go to college, basically made life really hard for ourselves. I wouldn’t mind if my kids were the first kind of popular I mentioned :) I worry so much about how it is for kids these days, growing up even faster than my peers and I did. I grew up in and live in a major metropolitan city. My dream is that by the time my kids are school age, we will live in a smaller town where everyone lives a slower pace, everyone is a little “dorky”, it’s ok to wear secondhand clothes, and children are allowed to have a childhood. Does such a place exist? We are about to move from Phoenix, AZ, to Salem, OR, so I feel like I’m getting closer to it :) The thing that sort of scares me is that I know a lot of this just depends on how my kids are raised, so, it’s a lot of pressure. I hope that they are confident enough to be true to themselves (which I was not), friendly, empathetic, and kind, no matter what kind of crowd they end up fitting into.

    Reply
  • lza June 30, 2014, 6:49 pm

    My husband and I have this debate a lot. I grey up very popular. I was prom queen, homecoming queen, athlete of the year, etc. My husband, on the other hand, had one friend in high school and was valedictorian. He was in the marching band, social olympiad, and other “dorky” clubs. Now, when I got to college, I had a really hard time making friends. I felt really alone and isolated. I actually ended up transferring schools, although to be honest that didn’t help either. My husband, however, has a ton of friends from college and loved his life there. I think it’s hard. He suffered so much in high school, and while I was thriving then, I had a hard time adjusting as I entered college. So what do we want for our kids? My husband hopes they are nerds like him. I just hope they are happy.

    Reply
  • Erin June 30, 2014, 6:54 pm

    My friends and I were the definite nerds in elementary and middle school, and my one of my best friends and I, along with another kid who started out really nerdy, were the only ones from my high school to get into and go to Ivy Leagues. Interpret that how you will ;)

    I’m still in undergrad, so it’s too soon to tell how people turned out, but definitely most of the girls and guys who were popular in middle school, who I so envied at the time, did not fare as well in high school.

    However, I thought the article was spot on with mentioning that the older kids who hang out with middle schoolers 3-4 years younger than them are generally not going to be the best influences. In middle school, the kids who hung out with high schoolers were seen as SO cool, but then when I got to high school, I realized that hanging out with middle schoolers was definitely a strange thing to do.

    Reply
  • Katie sB June 30, 2014, 7:24 pm

    I know it’s not always true, but almost every single kid I can remember being cool in middle school ended up having drug problems and some didn’t graduate high school.

    Reply
  • lynne June 30, 2014, 8:45 pm

    Why try to pigeonhole a child before he/she even enters school? Why should anyone care whether or not their child is popular or a dorky person? Why not let them be who they will be?

    I was not popular, and those that were ended up PG in high school or in trouble with drugs, alcohol or in other ways. Each is an individual. I say, let them evolve into who they will be.

    Reply
  • Lauren@ Focused to be Fit June 30, 2014, 9:17 pm

    Yummmm!!! What a great alternative and so easy, which is the best part!

    Reply
  • Beks June 30, 2014, 9:30 pm

    I’ve got my 10-year high school reunion coming up in September, so I’ve been facebook stalking some old classmates. The popular kids at my school were the ones who were in the honors classes, and did all kinds of activities (they were my crowd, but I wasn’t as popular, because I tend to say what comes into my head). There were also the troubled kids who talked a lot about sex, and were constantly getting into fights. The former group are doing pretty well for themselves, with steady jobs, families of their own, etc, whereas the latter group had children early, have a hard time finding steady jobs, and don’t have steady relationships.

    Not sure what to make of it, but these are my findings. I think it depends a lot on the kind of values you instill in your children, and how you encourage them to interact with their peers.

    Reply
  • Alina June 30, 2014, 9:34 pm

    Loved this article, especially the line “To be truly mature as an early adolescent means you’re able to be a good, loyal friend, supportive, hardworking and responsible,” Dr. Allen said. “But that doesn’t get a lot of airplay on Monday morning in a ninth-grade homeroom.” I was NOT cool in middle school, but made a group of supportive and awesome friends in high school where we proceeded to be not cool together ;) Not being cool was definitely hard in the moment, but looking on my high school graduation program and realizing most of the “cool kids” in middle school didn’t even make it to the end of high school really reinforced that the “pain” was worth it 100 times over!

    Reply
  • Nicole June 30, 2014, 10:33 pm

    My mom used to tell my brother not to peak in the 8th grade. Clearly she knew how it would end before the NY Times figured it out. However, I thought she said not to PEEK. And I always wondered what there was to peek at in the 8th grade ;)

    Reply
  • Sabrina June 30, 2014, 11:04 pm

    It seems to be the new “in” (popular) thing to proudly claim dork status when in high school, even if you weren’t. Look at celebrities anytime they are asked if they were popular in HS. None will admit it! I was popular in high school, and haven’t had any problems explained here. Neither have any of my formerly popular friends.
    All the “evidence” that popular kids burn out into some horrible life while the “dorks” prosper is purely anecdotal and, in my opinion, just reeks of a bad high-school reunion-based plot of a romcom. High school is 4 years of a life. Hardly defines anyone either way you look at it.

    Reply
  • Emily June 30, 2014, 11:35 pm

    I was definitely unpopular and awkward in high school, though I may not have been as awkward as I thought I was. In grade 8 I was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder following a terrible year of bullying and my grandfather having a terminal illness (although bullying was just a trigger, family history and traits were the cause). I will be honest and say I hated school up to year 10 and where I live year eleven and 12 are called “college” and I loved college a lot. It seemed the kids prone to be bullies grew up too quickly (teenage pregnancy, marriage, opting not to pursue higher education) though many popular kids were not bullies and too focused on getting straight A’s to be mean. As an “awkward” teen, I kind of blossomed once I was free of the jail that I called high school, I made quite a few close friends and am just about to complete my final semester towards becoming a registered nurse. But most importantly have managed to learn strategies to cope with having a mental illness.
    Great discussion topic.

    Reply
  • alan June 30, 2014, 11:48 pm

    This discussion is sort of like lots of movies I’ve seen, from the John Hughes cult classics (Sixteen Candles, Breakfast Club) to Never Been Kissed, Mean Girls, and She’s All That (and likely dozens more).

    There will always be the tension between “popular” and “dorky” and somewhere in between. My wife and I are raising the kids to just have a heart and be nice and sensitive to others. Much of that is innate–I don’t know that it can totally be taught, but we don’t worry too much about “popular” or not. We worry about “nice” and never judging others. So far (9th and 6th grade now), they have not let us down. And the popularity in their school has followed, as there have been no outcasts or bullying.

    More interestingly–I’d be curious to know if there is crossover from parents to kids–are the kids of “popular” teens also “popular” as they are growing up? Is “popular” an attitude that is transmitted? Or is it just environment in school?

    Reply
  • Alex @ Kenzie Life July 1, 2014, 12:38 am

    I actually read a few research articles earlier this year about studies that were done on the concept of ‘coolness’ and as it turns out, there are different ‘types’–cachet coolness and contrarian coolness (at least these were the types defined by the article I read). It was really interesting because the article examined whether coolness was something more than likability or popularity, and one of the studies found differences between coolness and social desirability, which I think is kind of fascinating. In regards to your question, in my experience, I’ve also seen it go both ways. I went to a really well-regarded high school and we had “cool” kids who were brilliant and went to Ivy League and other well-rated schools, and we also had “cool” kids who seemed to experience that social crash a year or two later. I was never a cool kid. I was president of the Latin club, never got asked to a dance, and I’ll never go to a high school reunion. BUT, I’ve had a lot of invaluable life lessons as a result of not fitting in with the “cool” crowd and I don’t feel like I missed out. I’m happy with where I’ve been and who I’ve become :) I think that’s all we can really ask for, right?

    Reply
  • Amber @ Busy, Bold, Blessed July 1, 2014, 7:50 am

    That pizza looks yummy! I need to make a cauliflower crust pizza soon, nom!

    I was definitely not popular. I had a lot of friends and a lot of people knew me, but I was a dork for sure and it has worked out for me in the long run :) I don’t think that this is the case for everyone, but I totally know people that peaked in 8th grade! They were so cool back then (and mean) and now they haven’t done much with their lives. Dorks rule!

    Reply
  • Katy @ HaveYouHurd July 1, 2014, 8:10 am

    I think that a kid/person can be cool, grown-up, popular, wholesome and dorky all at the same time. Or he/she can be a combination of any of those descriptions. I don’t really like putting people into boxes and saying if you’re “cool” and “popular” then you cannot be “wholesome” or “dorky”. I just hope my kid is happy, confident, nice to other people, and has a good group of friends.

    Reply
  • Bobbie July 1, 2014, 1:49 pm

    I actually think I would prefer my children to be a little dorky. I found growing up that the “cooler” kids tend to put a little too much effort into being cool. I feel that time could be better spent focusing on studies, sports etc..
    That being said, I don’t want my children to struggle with low self-esteem or anything in those rough years either..
    like you said, I realize I don’t really have any control over this.

    Reply
  • Allison July 1, 2014, 2:34 pm

    I couldn’t possibly disagree more with the commentors who said they want their kids to be cool because it is easier. I say this both as a mother of a middle schooler and someone who was not cool. While not cool, I was smart and had a lot of (not cool) friends. High School and Middle School were fine for me. I didn’t get teased or anything. I was marginally friends with cool kids in class but life should get better and better. My husband and I both have PhD’s now! As the mother of a middle schooler, I can also say that my son would not describe himself as popular at all but he is very happy and life isn’t “hard”. In fact, since he has embraced his nerd/smart kid status, his self-esteem has really shot through the roof. He never gets picked on (ok, he is 13 and 6ft tall…so he towers over the bullies, and he has blonde hair and blue eyes and based on what other moms tell me, girls think he is very good looking). But kids who are cool have to spend a lot of time and energy “being cool” and trying to maintain that status. My son has to work hard in his “competition to see which one of us is the smartest kid in the school”…spending time making sure you get an A in algebra in 7th grade will take you much farther in life than spending time making sure other kids think you are cool. And as far as just enjoying life, the other day my son and his (many) friends were playing Marco Polo in the pool and having a great time while one of the “cool” kids was just standing by the side of the pool trying to make sure his hair didn’t get spalshed by anyone. Sorry about the rant, but there has been much middle school drama in my neighborhood lately and the “popular” kids just seem like a big bunch of losers.

    Reply
    • Caitlin July 1, 2014, 2:35 pm

      Marco Polo is ALWAYS cool!!!

      Reply
  • kwithme July 1, 2014, 2:59 pm

    Growing up I was middle of the road. Definitely not popular, but not picked on either. My brother was very popular and I was thankful that we were not in HS at the same time. My brother is a likeable guy. He likes people, is friendly, engaging and enthusiastic. He did not have a hard time in HS or college and while he has made a few choices that make his life harder than it needs to be, they are far from drug abuse or depression.

    I’d be happy if my kids were naturally friendly and social, but they are not. They are 12 and 9. The 12 year old did not really have any friends until 3 grade and then only one or two until middle school. A few weeks into MS, she worked on saying Hi and smiling after she complained about having no friends. By the end of the first year of MS she exclaimed happily, “I have so many friends I can’t hardly keep up with them!”. She is an introvert and retreats to her room to read and recharge. I am thankful she has her friends but her personality would make it difficult to handle popularity.

    My 9 year old does not yet have any close friends. I hope she will grow into some friendships like her sister did especially when there is a bigger pool to choose from. There are not many kids who share her interests at school and that makes it tough. She is respected for her artistic abilities and is often asked to draw things for other kids but not often sought out to be played with. I tell her that sometimes she has to jump in.

    I always had a few friends and that works for me. I am very comfortable with that for my kids because it is familiar. I want them to be true to themselves, proud of who they are and what they can do.

    Reply
  • Kinsey July 1, 2014, 3:52 pm

    I find this topic fascinating because I live in Palo Alto, CA–aka the center of the nerd universe. Both my parents are highly educated and have successful careers–as does most of their friends. Not surprisingly, high school wasn’t the most fun for them. However, I just graduated from high school, and while I was never cool in the traditional sense (I don’t party, smoke, date the popular boys etc.), our high school really celebrates the smart “dorks,” probably because all of our parents and teachers expect excellence from us and all of our peers truly respect the intellectuals in AP classes, on the robotics team etc. That doesn’t mean that we don’t have the typical cool kids, we definitely do, but we live in a very unique bubble of analytical nerds. I’m interested to see other people’s perspectives when I go to college next year and whether they felt that they fit in or were dorkier than they would have liked.

    Reply
  • elizabeth July 4, 2014, 3:59 pm

    I think this topic is fascinating and I hope my future child(ren) are confident, NICE and passionate about their lives, regardless of popularity. Now, I was completely indifferent to popularity in middle school and high school. I picked up pretty quick that the “popular kids” liked to talk trash, play mean games and take unnecessary risks (like drugs and sex) in order to maintain their edge. While I wouldn’t say I confidently understood the why behind my distaste for them and their antics, I am glad I stayed true to myself and only spent time with people I felt I truly felt a connection with. However, during this time of my life, my mom had a really hard time with me not wanting to be cool and it was a constant struggle between us. She now says, looking back, she wishes she was more supportive of my choices. Her friends all had daughters my age who were cool and I never wanted anything to do with them and that drove her crazy, the bitchy moms all talked trash just like their daughters and being a “cool” mom with an indifferent daughter was a real struggle for her. My dad on the other hand was very supportive of me and my passions, so I had varying outlooks on my childhood.

    Reply

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