…A light hearted look at how far we can go–not that I, or anyone I know has, ahem.
- You cut out screen time for your small children, then recorded music and stories, then picture books, then talking too much to them at all.
- If you must say something, you sing it on a pentatonic scale, or get the message across with a nursery rhyme.
- You replace all the plastic toys in your house with natural toys, then replace the natural toys with homemade toys, then replace the homemade toys with sticks and stones.
- Your children wear three layers of wool in any month containing the letter “R.”
- Not even your closest friends and family know what color your baby’s hair is because they have never seen him without his hat on.
- You get into celebrating seasonal festivals like the lantern walk because they seem earth based and groovy, but before long start alarming your husband with the annual family Christmas Pageant, not to mention the pictures of angels and the Madonna hanging in your children’s room.
- You use regular easter egg dye to dye play silks and yarn; your easter eggs will be colored with onion skins, spirulina, and beets, thank you very much.
- Your child thinks cd’s are “rainbow mirrors” left by fairies.
- You do not flinch when telling fairy tales to your five year old that involve wicked stepmothers requesting the heart and liver be cut from her step child’s corpse. In fact, you consider such stories “soul milk.”
- When a good rebellion is in order you sing the ABC song to your two year old, read picture books featuring animals dressed as humans, and serve fish on chicken day. Even Waldorf mamas need to get wild!
- You go from thinking that Waldorf is extreme and rigid, then intriguing and mysterious, then common sense. Not that you know how to sum it up quickly for the curious mother at the park, though. If you had to, you might say something like this:
“Waldorf” is not something that happens at a special school, or when very expensive toys are present, or when certain rules are followed. It lives in the hearts of caregivers who strive to be worthy of imitation, who respect childhood by not imposing adult thinking onto its dream like qualities, who protect their children’s senses from over-scheduling, media, and consumerism, who honor play and imagination and movement as the foundation for genius, and who feed their children’s developing bodies, minds, and spirits by offering them the right stuff at the right time—soul milk, yo. And that’s just the beginning, because if there is one thing I can say for sure about Waldorf, it’s that it is imbued with layer upon layer of meaning. Yes, it can be annoying, threatening, and a little, well, ridiculous. But if there has ever been a larger, sweeter onion to peel the layers back on, I have yet to find it.
Got any other good ones about what Waldorf is, or how to know when you’ve gone too far?