31 Mar Introducing the hilarious and candid Amanda Tapiero!
What do you love to do with your children? How old are they? And what is your greatest wish for them?
My daughters are 9 and 11, my son, 13. First of all I love doing things with them that involve them explaining their feelings or point of view, such as having them show me their artwork, or share something they wrote, or tell me a story about an event or an experience they had. As far as actual activities, it is a great joy to go on a hike, long bike ride, or travel to a new place with them. These excursions can turn out to be adventures with aspects of challenge, struggle, and even uncertainty, but in the end make us feel like we are an unbreakable unit. I hope that they remember how we managed to find our way, keep up our spirits, and discover things inside and outside ourselves together. But a more crucial wish is that they will be able to face adversity without losing faith in themselves, or forgetting that a situation can change or be changed for the better.
When and where are you the happiest?
Awful question! Ranking great moments? Are you going to ask me next who my favorite child is? I am happy to say that there isn’t one that stands out, but I was never really a person with highs or lows. There has always been something in my life that makes me happy, and at the same time, something to make me feel like life and our world are far from perfect- so it all ends up kind of even. That sounds either pretentious or boring! I knew I shouldn’t have tried to answer this question…
If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?
Morocco & Japan for new experiences, Austria and England for more in-depth revisits of the places where my family came from.
What quality do you most admire in a mother? And what woman has had the biggest impression on you?
The ability to not lose your sense of humor. By that I mean that I admire mothers who do not get so caught up in the job of motherhood and in trying to create successful children that they lose perspective on how messy and unpredictable life can be. Because one cannot, nor should, try to control everything, or subject a child to this endeavor- and supposedly on their behalf!
I was lucky to have a very “natural mother”, who I always felt had an amazing way of dealing with me and with other people’s children as well. I was a somewhat anxious child, yet I felt safer and more relaxed seeing how my mother could just throw her hands up and laugh or marvel at crazy or even bad situations. But she was also deeply compassionate and caring, and acknowledged or validated my feelings. It was a balance of “ha ha ” and “uh-oh”, at the right times and in the right amounts. So hard to replicate!
What is your favorite book? Movie?
As my whole family knows, I am a tad obsessed with reading the New Yorker magazine. Keeping up with it is almost a full time job, so I hardly have time for books-though I try to keep one on the side. It really satisfies all my interests, and for non-fiction, I have come to realize that I prefer short stories. Also, since my grandmother “discovered” the weekly when she came over from England, and passed on the taste for it to my mother, it became kind of a tradition that connects us, having the latest two or three issues folded open on our bedside tables, one after the other… As for films, I confess to liking sci-fi, though not the horror kind, and period films. And tons of “old” movies. I could never pick a favorite, though, where kids are involved, I love “Nemo”, “The Incredibles”, “Spirited Away”, “Milo and Otis”, and “Mean Girls”.
What personal achievement are you most proud of?
I am not ready for that question! Ask me on my deathbed, assuming I have one.
What do you feel is your strongest talent?
My children would say: “you can draw anything really really well”. I say that’s a cheap talent, but it makes people happy, and I certainly can’t sing or dance or do a cartwheel. What is a talent anyway? I guess I would say I have the ability to remain pretty calm no matter what. Though have I really been put to the test? Certainly not like some very unfortunate people.
What do you like to do for fun?
Hang out with friends like a teenager, just talking and wasting time. That never gets old. Though now it seems like a sensible idea to combine this activity with some form of exercise, because let’s face it, the body is not headed in the teenage direction.
What is your favorite time of the day and why?
I LOVE 10 o’clock. For obvious reasons.
Where is your favorite place to Party with Moms and what’s your favorite drink?
I will Party with Moms in a boat, in a- seriously, a boat is great, and not with a goat but perhaps a fur coat? Also in a bar, or in a car (on the way to a night at the theater in NYC), or on a mountain (hiking and yakking, or skiing), in a class (yoga), on the grass (“watching” kids play a sport/game), by the pool (again, watching them frolic) or even in the kitchen (what rhymes with kitchen?). I enjoy so many drinks. Thank goodness you don’t have to marry one drink, I mean one man is ok, but not one drink.