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Happy third birthday, Oliver!

Mar 15, 2018

Three years today, my little monkey.

These past few months have been hard for me and you together, for our team. And I’m not only talking about your fickle moods, your tantrums, your crying every time something doesn’t go your way, every time I say NO, every time my tone of voice is more authoritative. Your intensity pushes all my buttons, dries my patience, and exhausts me at times, but I can take it.

But when you refuse my kisses, or say “stop, mummy” when I hug you—I had no idea it could start so soon; when you want daddy, “daddy’s strong” to do horsey horsey—I’m strong, too, you know?; when you cry for “papà” because you hurt yourself—my ambulance is different but it does work, let me prove it to you next time; when I offer my help and I get a “I want daddy to help”. When you say “mala mamma” punching my leg for something that’s not even under my control—it’s not my body you hurt.

I know it’s nothing personal, just a phase—another phase, always a phase—but it still hurts inside. Sometimes it even numbs my love for you a little bit.

That’s why I really struggled writing something for you today. Then the other morning I managed to avoid yet another crisis and put a smile back on your face—I did that, not daddy—and I understood what I wanted to tell you:

I don’t always get you, but I’ll always try as hard as I can.

Since you started developing into your own person—and so fiercely so—it’s been hard for me to read you, understand you, and sympathise with you when you go through your storms. I see how different we are, you and me, and even though I have one or two things I’d like to teach you eventually, now it’s me who has to learn from you.

So you here goes my promise to you. I’ll always try to be an ever-changing mother, and become the person you need me to be in every phase you go through.

I’ll improve for you unconditionally, I’ll learn from you, I’ll learn with you; I’ll put aside my pride, I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt, I’ll own to my mistakes, always and forever; I’ll respect you first, I’ll apologise first, I’ll reach out first, I’ll listen to you first. And I’ll also love you first—and sometimes for both of us, when I don’t feel like your love matches mine.

For you, my monkey, I’ll become the best version of parent and person that I can possibly be. At the end of it, I’ll be your best work of art, not the other way around.

Happy birthday, my little monkey.

I. Love. You.

Mamma

Comments

Carol • Apr 17, 2018

Oh this resonates with me, my Oliver will turn three this summer and everything you wrote here is what I’m experiencing now.

My Oliver is wanting daddy first. My Oliver also rejects my love. My Oliver pushes my buttons.

This morning he went to preschool and was meditating on the challenges recently. I realize I am also growing and learning what it means to be a mom, as he is growing and learning to be a Toddler.

Learning and growing is hard work... a marathon. Your words were so timely and encouraging.

🌸 Carlotta • Apr 22, 2018

Oh Carol, it's actually good to hear that other moms are experiencing the same. It's not easy, isn't it? But I guess it's a good sign as well, it means that our husbands are strong, present figures in our children's life, which is great!

Sometimes I see small changes, though, so there's definitely hope ;-) Also, I don't know if it's the same for you, but my Oliver really responds better to calm and sweetness: every time I'm more tired and lose my cool with Oliver, he straight away shifts back to Alex, no matter how much progress we've made. So it's also a good reminder that I need to be ever more patient and understanding.

It's exactly what you said: we're all constantly learning! 🌸

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The blog

I write mainly about Montessori, parenthood, and multilingualism. Here are some recent posts.

Montessori
One day a few years ago my husband came home and said, "Why don't we put a mattress on the floor in the baby room? It'd be much more natural". "Never" was my reply. That's how our Montessori journey started. Since then we've been living, breathing and applying the philosophy at home day in and day out, starting from ourselves. Because educating children starts from the parents.
Bean and seed mosaic
I'm not perfect. I'm aware
DIY yoga cards for kids
Children at the restaurant: let's recalibrate expectations
Don't ask your children to share their toys
Those "good job" that erode our children's confidence
Our Montessori birthday
Two alternatives to screens that my kids love
Using fear and threats to control children is never right!
"Stop crying!" doesn't work
Living sustainably
Living sustainably for me doesn’t only mean to have a more eco-friendly lifestyle. It means to make decisions that are sustainable for our planet, the people on it, but also for our life, our lifestyle, and our happiness. It means to take any daily chance to evolve and be happier, healthier, kinder, more responsible and more caring human beings—the only sustainable way for a meaningful future.
Face yoga is an act of self love
Why you should wear the same outfit twice on Instagram
The power of creating habits (and why you should do it, even if you then break them!)
Responsible eating is the diet of the future (Would you like to teach it to your kids?)
The power of NOT complaining: can you do it for a whole month?
Clean up your planet, please!
Infographic: 8 steps to switch to cloth nappies (a guide for reluctant parents)
A personal note on happiness
A personal note on social media
A change of life always widens your horizons
New to La Tela?
I’ve prepared collections on various topics that I’ve written over the years. Perhaps you’ll find one that interests you.

Travel

We sold everything to travel the world for two years. We're currently in New Zealand.

Books

In 2020 I wrote 4 books for the Italian collection “Gioca and Impara con il metodo Montessori” curated by Grazia Honegger Fresco. The collection is a project by Il Corriere della Sera and La Gazzetta dello Sport.

We also implemented the workshops of the last 15 volumes of the collection with Oliver and Emily.

Podcast

On my podcast, “Educare con calma”, I talk about various topics, from Montessori to sustainability. Only in Italian!

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Why La Tela di Carlotta?
I dreamed of the name La Tela di Carlotta. One morning I woke up and in my dreams I had created a blog named just like the American novel (Charlotte's Web). Many years and endless ups and downs later, this web of thoughts and stories is my work. It took me a long time to understand what kind of online presence I wanted and today I know: I'm transparent, I show real life, I don't advertise, I only recommend sustainable brands (and not only because they pay me) and I believe in the value of my blog and my courses—because if we don't believe in the value of our work, no one will believe in it for us.
Carlotta
Carlotta dreaming of La Tela
I know! I don't want it to be over yet either.