Carnival of Natural Parenting 2011 Year in Review

December 31st, 2011 by Dionna | 5 Comments
Posted in Carnival and Special Series, Carnival of Natural Parenting

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For the past two years, I have been proud to co-host the Carnival of Natural Parenting with Lauren of Hobo Mama. We created the Carnival in January 2010 to bring together the awesome community of parenting bloggers who identify as “attachment” or “natural” parents.

In the past year, our writers have shared how they handle advocacy compassionately, they have opened up about their finances and their parenting philosophies, and they’ve inspired us with stories of parenting through play and how they’ve learned from their own children. The compilations of posts are a rich resource – I hope you will look through 2011’s themes and articles and get to know some of the writers!

Anyone can write for the Carnival of Natural Parenting, and you can write as few or as many times as you’d like throughout the year. You can read more about how to write for the Carnival as well as details on the topics we have scheduled through June at our main Carnival page. Here are the topics for the next few months: in January we invite you to write about your experiences trying out a new aspect of natural parenting; in February we want parents to reflect on how they can communicate with others respectfully; and in March we want you to share how your life has been touched by a child with special needs.

Whether you write for or enjoy reading the articles written for the Carnival of Natural Parenting, or whether you are simply interested in learning more about natural parenting practices, we want you to join our community at the site born out of the Carnival: Natural Parents Network (NPN). NPN is a community that connects, informs, empowers, and inspires parents and parents-to-be. We are thankful for the larger NP community we interact with on NPN’s website, Facebook page, and Twitter stream, and we’re doubly thankful for the close-knit family of NPN volunteers – we have found true friends.

And for Carnival updates, be sure to look for the #CarNatPar hashtag on Twitter and follow the Twitter list of our #CarNatPar writers. On Facebook, you can get Carnival updates by “liking” the CarNatPar Fan Page. You can also subscribe to all our participants’ RSS feeds in one go by subscribing to the shared CarnatPar feed.

We look forward to reading more from our writers – new and old – in 2011. But before 2012 starts, I wanted to sum up our second year and share some of my favorite Carnival posts once again.

Here are a few quick facts:

  • In the 10 months that we hosted CarNatPar in 2011 (we took June off for Lauren’s babymoon and December off for Dionna’s babymoon), we had 169 different writers. That is 52 more writers than we had during the 11 months we hosted the Carnival last year.
  • In addition to me and Lauren, we had 3 writers write all 10 months: Amy from Anktangle, Deb from Living Montessori Now, and Jorje from Momma Jorje. Our next most prolific writer was Mrs. Green of Little Green Blog, who wrote for 9 of the 10 months. Thank you, mamas!
  • We had only three natural papas participate (one more than last year!) – Mike, husband of Jennifer at True Confessions of a Real Mommy, Liam of In the Now, and Sam, husband to Lauren of Hobo Mama. We need some more men to write for the Carnival — who will join us in 2012?
  • Lauren and I edited a grand total of 484 posts. That is 125 posts more than last year! I would guess that we spend a minimum of 20 minutes per post each month (counting the time it takes us to write the call for submissions posts, the summaries, our comments, our tweets and FB updates, communicating by email with the writers, etc.), so that means Lauren and I each spent approximately 161.3 hours each (or about 16.1 hours each month) putting the CarNatPar together in 2011. Wow!

Here are some of my favorite posts from 2011

*(click on each month for a complete list of posts; the monthly themes are in parentheses):

  • January (Learning from Children): From my children, I have learned — Mama Mo at Attached at the Nip has a litany of beautiful lessons, from selflessness to sleeplessness.
  • February (Parenting Essentials): New Perspectives Bring New Beginnings — MJ at Wander Wonder Discover, who is a former authoritarian mamma, has gained perspective via parenting.
  • March (Make a Natural Parenting “Top 10? List): Step Away From the Amazon List — Stefanie at Very, Very Fine wishes she hadn’t bought so much useless stuff.
  • April (Compassionate Advocacy): The Importance of Advocating Compassionately — Kristen at Adventures in Mommyhood acts as a compassionate advocate by sharing information with many in the hopes of reaching a few. and Passionate and Compassionate: How do We do It? — Kelly at Becoming Crunchy shares the importance of understanding your motivation for advocacy.
  • May (Growing in the Outdoors): Why We Make this Organic Garden Grow — Brenna at Almost All The Truth shares her reasons for gardening with her three small children.
  • July (Parenting Philosophy): Long Term — Rosemary at Rosmarinus Officinalis thinks about who she would like to see her daughter become — and what she can do now to lay a strong foundation for those hopes. and On Children — “Your children are not your children,” say Kahlil Gibran and Hannah at Wild Parenting.
  • August (Creating With Kids):How to do Crafts with Kids — Gaby from Tmuffin guest posts at Natural Parents Network and describes how to keep things simple when doing crafts with kids for magical (easy-to-clean, and tantrum-free) results.
  • September (Parenting Through Play): Parenting Through Play Starts in Infancy — In a guest post at Natural Parents Network, Issa from LoveLiveGrow shares that though she only has a 3-month-old, playful parenting has already started. and Exaggerating for effect — Lauren at Hobo Mama has learned how to ham it up.
  • October (Money Matters): Poor People, Wealthy Ways — Sylvia at MaMammalia discusses how existing on very little money allows her to set an example of how to live conscientiously and with love.
  • November (Kids in the Kitchen): Grandma Rose’s Kitchen — Abbie at Farmer’s Daughter reminisces about her childhood and dreams of filling her kitchen with people, love, noise, and messes.

Obviously there were many months that I could not choose just one favorite, there were so many fabulous posts this year.

And here is a complete list of all of our participants, with Facebook and Twitter links where applicable:

5 Responses to:
"Carnival of Natural Parenting 2011 Year in Review"

  1. Zoie @ TouchstoneZ   TouchstoneZ

    Thank you and Lauren, for all the effort and time you put into creating a carnival that I am always excited to read and participate in. I am, as always grateful for the support you both have given to Kelly and me for the Mindful Mama Car.

    This is an impressive list of posts and participants. I am looking forward to checking in with some that I’ve read and meeting the few that I haven’t yet.

    Best wishes for you and your family in 2012. I look forward to another great year of CarNarPar, too.

  2. Fantastic! This will help me update my reader list!

    I’m incredibly honored to be included in your fave list. It’s been wonderfully fulfilling and enlightening to take part in these carnivals. I learn so much both from writing and reading. You and Lauren have created something truly meaningful :)

    I look forward to another great year in the NPN community!

  3. Sean S   mydaddymydaddy

    I was just introduced to your blog today. It’s fantastic!! I think that while many of us struggle to parent in as “natural” way as possible, the tools you you make available make it easier to do so. I can only hope that my blog that i started recently can turn into such a profound tool for others. Thanks for the inspiration!

  4. Thank you to you and Lauren for hosting this fabulous carnival! I so enjoyed participating for 2 months… next year I hope to participate in all of them! :)

  5. Kate Wicker   KateWicker

    I’ll echo what I said over at Lauren’s place: I am forever grateful for all you and Hobo Mama have done to build this online natural parenting community. My only regret is that my life with many littles keeps me from participating more. Here’s to another great year in 2012!

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