That's what SHE said: 15 ways to be better, trauma as a teacher, Muslim parents talk to their kids about hatred and extremism, the stages of injustice against black people, how to get through a crap week and more...

Wear comfortable underwear and powerful clothes. Be nice to babies, especially on airplanes and be the boss of your phone, not the other way around.   

With the welcoming of her new son whom they hope to adopt from the foster care system, Jillian Lauren dishes on the fear of uncertainty and describes trauma as her most terrifying opponent in life as well as her greatest teacher..."Trauma is a baffling beast. I have been dealing with our first son’s PTSD for years and it still bests me often. Trauma has been my most terrifying opponent in this life and also my greatest teacher. When I think about the trauma we’re experiencing as a society right now, and our fearful, primal, and often-illogical reaction, it’s pretty much the macro version of what my children go through daily. I believe there is nothing more important than facing down trauma with love. It is so essential right now to locate the love that is there, always, somewhere deep beneath the fear- in our homes, in our communities, in our world. Love wins. Ultimately, it does."

After a wave of anti-Muslim rhetoric in the wake of the Paris attacks and San Bernardino shooting, the New York Times editors have asked their Muslim readers how they talk to their children about this time in our history..."Since we are a family that focuses education on global citizenship, and I myself am a human rights historian, I tend to give her a more worldly view and expose her to different types of literature. So, I read her one of my favorite “Little Prince” excerpts, then talked about what it means....'There were terrible seeds on the little prince’s planet... they were baobab seeds. The planet’s soil was infested with them. Now, a baobab, if you set about it too late, you can never get rid of it. It takes up the whole planet. It pierces it with its roots. And if the planet is too small, and if there are too many baobabs, they will make it burst.' "

"Stage 5: Reminding us that “Not All White People..”As we rage about the system, the inhumane treatment of Black people that has been allowed, encouraged and state-sanctioned because of white privilege that has soaked the very fabric of the system, people push back to let us know that not all white people are racist.And we didn’t even say ALL white people are racist but racism is real, bigots are plenty and we’re not just making this up to make white folks feel bad. IT IS REAL. We said that white people benefit from privilege and the automatic position of power they’re in just because of their skin color. We didn’t call you RACIST, unless you feel like pointing out that FACT makes you a bigot. Then by all means, holler like hit dogs do."


After author Derrick Clifton wrote an essay called How To Talk To White People About Iggy Azalea the responses and reactions he got back to the essay focused on cultural appropriation, prompted him to pen 9 Clueless Things White People Say When Confronted With Racism...  2) “I don’t see race. I only see the human race.” While this may sound revolutionary, so-called color-blindness is actually part of the problem. Not “seeing race” is simply a lazy coded phrase for deliberately ignoring the lingering elements of racism that actually need to be fixed and reinforces the privilege of being able to bypass the negative effects of racism in the first place. As the saying goes, “You can’t erase what you cannot face.”


For Los Angelenos looking to ring in the new year, a great start would be checking out the Rose Parade floats in Pasadena on display through Sunday afternoon. For the months of January, LAist put out a list of over 20 Southern California Museums for Free on January 30. While not free, you should add Journey to Space at the California Science Center as a must see Museum exhibit as well as Mummies of the World: The Exhibit debuting at Bowers Museum this March. Keep in mind that on January 18, National Parks will be free along with these other days. For theatre, check out Rainn Wilson in Thom Pain (based on nothing) at the Geffen, Mel Brooks comes to Segerstrom along with a viewing of Blazing Saddles. and Awake & Sing! by Clifford Odets at the Odyssey Theatre through January 31, 2016. Also coming up, Segerstrom Center's Off Center Festival 2016 features new artists and runs January 16 - 30, 2016. For a date night of great theatre and music, go see Jason Robert Brown conduct The Bridges of Madison County at the Ahmanson Theatre, starring Elizabeth Stanley and Andrew Samonsky. 

New York families should check out The Secret Inside You at the American Museum of Natural History or Picasso Sculpture at the MoMA closing February 7, 2016. For a family day of theatre, check out Step Afrika! at the Brooklyn Center for Performing Arts and New York parents looking forward to springtime theatre in New York, be sure to get your tickets now for  David Harrower's new play Blackbird starring Jeff Daniels and Michelle Williams.

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