Thursday, February 19, 2009

Monday, February 16, 2009

Disrespect for Helen Thomas Speaks Loudly

A big thank you to my friends at the Women’s Media Center who drew my attention to the February 9 segment of “The O’Reilly Factor,” during which host Bill O’Reilly mocked award-winning long-time White House Press Corps member Helen Thomas.

In the clip, you'll see O’Reilly and two other male hosts calling Thomas names like “The Wicked Witch” and making fun of her voice. It's a sad, sad day for girls in our country when accomplished professional women like Thomas are not given the respect they have rightfully earned.

Helen Thomas is a pioneering woman journalist: first female member of the National Press Club, first female member (and then first female president ) of the White House Correspondents’ Association, and first female member of the Gridiron Club. She's a professional and a class act, a great example to girls and young women who are interested in becoming journalists.

The fact that she was mocked for her appearance, age, and voice on national TV is a disgrace. It underscores the messages that our daughters get every day from popular culture: if you're female, how you look is more important than what you do. Girls don't need this negative message.

That's why, as parents, we should click here and add our voices to the growing number of people who are calling on Bill O'Reilly to apologize to Helen Thomas. Add your voice and tell your daughter why this matters to you. It will send her the strong positive message that you value females for their accomplishments, not their appearance.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Girl Scouts Help Keep Girls Safe Online

It's great to see that Girl Scouts of the USA has partnered with Microsoft to launch LMK (“Let Me Know”), a new place online where teen girls can talk to each other about the important issues of online safety, predators and cyberbullying.

My daughters and I were all Girl Scouts, and I'm a huge admirer of their tireless efforts on behalf of girls around the world. LMK is working to remedy the “digital gap” between teen girls and their parents. As we all know, it can be difficult to keep our kids safe online when they understand more of the technology than we do.

In addition to the Web site for teen girls, there is also a terrific site for parents which features content from the girls and helps explain to parents the real dangers girls are encountering on the Web.

GSUSA and Microsoft hope that the sites will be a powerful new tool for girls and their parents to combat online predators and dangerous situations, and I do, too! If you check them out, please let me know what you think.

How You Can Strengthen Her Self Image









Content for YOU at

In Lifting the Weight Over Size Abby Ellin talks about the harmful messages parents can give daughters about body image, and how to stop it together! Virginia Beane Rutter identifies why girls care so much about their hair in The Power of Her Hair.

Do you ever worry about your daughter in school? Joe Kelly and Andy Steiner give some great tips and information about how you can help your girls in Dads In School Front Lines and Helping Her Weather the Middle School Transition.

New for Your Girl Online

Start this week at New Moon Girls by reading all about pets! Raising Her Sights, Adventures in Cowgirling, Horses in My Heart and Voice Box: Animal Rights are some great articles to get you and your girl talking! Be sure to check New Moon Girls every week for new exciting girl-created content!

Checkout these articles and more this week at

Take Our 10 Second Parenting Poll

Are you transferring your fears to your daughter? Take our parenting poll at all this week. We can’t wait to see the results!

Read New Moon Girls With Her

Are you and your daughter interested in History? What about women in politics? Read the Herstory article “Hello, Ms. President,” on page 18 in your January/February 2009 issue of New Moon Girls. Then talk with your girl about her ideas on women in politics and how it’s changed!




CEO and Founder, New Moon Girl Media 


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Thursday, February 12, 2009

Cotton Candy to the Rescue

As someone with a lifelong sweet tooth, I loved the pink, fluffy sweet stuff of cotton candy as a girl, as did my daughters. Although all three of us much prefer chocolate for our sweet these days, we were delighted to see that cotton candy is being used in medical research to create new methods of breast reconstruction.

According to the Associated Press, doctors at New York-Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center have been relying on cotton candy to create “a network of blood vessels within laboratory-grown bone, skin, muscle or fat for breast reconstruction.”

Talk about great news. Like most women my age, I have quite a few friends who are fighting breast cancer. I’m always excited to hear about new weapons for their arsenal, and it adds a little fun to know that my favorite pink sweet is part of the fight, too. The next time you buy the stuff (or have to scrub it off a sticky child), don’t forget it’s a new partner in the quest for breast health.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mom in Chief

Here at New Moon, we’ve been delighted by the arrival of the Obamas and their young daughters to the White House. Our staff and girl members are excited to see what changes, initiatives and improvements the Obamas will strive to make in the lives of girls and women. I'm particularly excited about Michelle Obama, whose leadership and presence helped strongly define her husband’s campaign. While some previous First Ladies have taken a passive approach to their role, I was hopeful that Mrs. Obama would take an activist stance on issues that matter to her.

In the scant three weeks since the Inauguration, Mrs. Obama has not disappointed. She's advocated for the new administration's policy priorities, from economic stimulus to the enacting of the Lilly Ledbetter pay-equality law for women (FINALLY!). I can’t wait to see what she supports next! Read all about her first initiatives here:

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Girls Agenda for President Obama

Dear President Obama:

As Malia and Sasha’s proud father I don’t need to tell you how having daughters can give you new eyes on the world. My daughters, Mavis and Nia, are adults now. But it feels like just last week that they were ten years old and I was worrying about how to help them navigate the treacherous journey from girlhood to womanhood. We started New Moon Girls magazine together to give girls a place to express themselves and make the world better.

I believe you agree that growing up should mean increasing opportunities as well as responsibilities for our daughters. It should mean increasing respect and rewards for their intelligence, creativity, and skills. It should mean they have access to equal education and healthcare, including effective pregnancy prevention. It should mean they have the freedom to walk down the street or go on a date without worrying they might be attacked just because they are female.

Even privileged girls in the U.S. like our daughters face many threats to their health and well-being. And girls who don’t have their advantages are much more vulnerable. Every day the world exploits girls’ bodies as sex objects in marketing and pornography, sending every girl and boy the unmistakable message that a girl’s greatest value lies in her sex appeal. Every day, girls are enslaved and sold as child prostitutes and child laborers. Every day, companies are legally allowed to sell beauty products with cancer-causing ingredients like phthalates in them.

The good news is, girls worldwide are breaking the barriers of stereotypes and repression with their honesty, courage, high expectations for themselves, and compassion for others. Every day, girls go to school and study hard. Every day, girls learn new skills and try new things. Every day, girls help their friends and support others who are less fortunate. Every day, girls volunteer to end child labor, reverse climate change, restore peace and feed the hungry.

Our nation and our world face huge challenges that demand dramatic responses. It wouldn’t be surprising if the needs of girls seem small in comparison. But I ask you to remember that girls are 50% of our future and their needs deserve serious attention and resources. When we meet girls’ needs, life is made better for everyone.

For more ideas on what's important for girls in 2009, visit the National Council for Research on Women blog Feb 4-9.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Does the SuperBowl Make You Cringe With Your Daughter?

Joe Kelly's Dads & Daughters blog has a great post with tips on how to watch the SuperBowl with your daughter without cringing. Check it out and enjoy the game and junk food feast!

Girls Growing Up

Inspire YOUR Girl with Help from

New for Your Girl Online

The month of February is packed with great themes at New Moon Girls. Start this week by reading all about black Herstory—with articles about food for the soul, coming of age and women that inspire us! Check out all these articles and more online. Upcoming themes in February are Love and Crushes, Pets, Body Image and What’s in a Name. Be sure to check New Moon Girls every week for new exciting girl-created content!

Content for YOU at

In Creativity for the Soul Nancy Gruver shares why music and dance benefit girls, and not at just a young age! Helen Cordes explores how to get girls behind the camera and why it’s great for them in Making Her Own Movies.

Do you need to talk to your daughter about how her body is changing but are unsure how? Lynda Madison and Amy Lynch give you all the tips and information you’ll need in What to Do and Say When Her Body Changes.

Checkout these articles and more this week at

Take Our 10 Second Parenting Poll before Feb. 6

Thanks to everyone who shared your thoughts about how we can best describe New Moon in a short phrase. We’ve read all your responses which were very helpful. Now we’ve drafted four new descriptions. Please take 10 seconds to vote on which phrase you like best. The poll is up through Feb. 6 at We can’t wait to see the results! And if you think you could say it even better, send your phrase to.

Read New Moon Girls With Her

Are you and your daughter concerned about the environment? Do you look for ways to make a change together? Read the article “Tree Huggers: Save Mother Earth,” on page 29 in your January/February 2009 issue of New Moon Girls. Then talk with your girl about her ideas on conservation—I bet it’ll be an interesting conversation.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Girls Envision Change

New Moon Girls’ vision for change is prominently featured in the winter issue of Ms. Magazine – along with people like Alice Walker, Shirley Tilghman (president of Princeton), Ani DiFranco, and others. What an honor for us!
Here's what our members had to say:
GIVE GIRLS WHAT THEY WANT. As girls ages 8 through 15, we’re so excited that
Malia and Sasha will be in the White House! What we need from the president is
better health care for girls and more opportunities for college—not just getting
in, but paying for it. We need to end the war in Iraq, because so many women and
girls are dying there. As we grow up, we need choices about our own bodies and
we need equal pay. Most of all, we need a president who listens to all girls and
respects us. P.S. We’re sending Malia and Sasha a four-year membership to New

And be sure to pick up a copy of the actual magazine - the online doesn’t include the wonderful photo of the Girls Editorial Board that’s in the magazine.

Friday, January 16, 2009

It’s Inauguration Week


On Tuesday, U.S. President-elect Barack Obama will be sworn in. We’re featuring special inauguration coverage all week at New Moon Girls. If a girl you know is lucky enough to be going to President-elect Obama’s Inauguration, we want to hear from her! Please be our reporters for the day.

Calling All Girl Reporters!

Here’s our request for girl reporters: We want to know what it’s like through your eyes! If you’re watching the inauguration on TV or listening to the radio, let us know how that feels, too. What did you think about the speeches? What are you and your friends or family talking about? Submit your coverage to Spotlight so that we can all feel like we’re right there with you! 

Gift Membership for Malia and Sasha Obama

After the election, a mom called to order a 4-year gift membership to New Moon Girls for Malia and Sasha Obama. She doesn’t know the girls personally, but she said that New Moon Girls has helped her own daughter so much. That’s why she wanted the Obama girls to have it, too.


We’re excited and are welcoming Malia and Sasha to the White House and to New Moon Girls this week. Girls Editorial Board member Nneoma writes about how much it means to have a presidential family who is African American like hers. And members Sara and Grace wish the Obama girls luck at their new schools.


Girls should send their “Welcome to Malia and Sasha” letters, poems, drawings to Spotlight all week! We’re putting together a package that will be given to their mom, Michelle.

Got Inner Beauty?

There’s still a couple days left to nominate girls for our special Beautiful Girls issue of the magazine (May/June). The girl you nominate might be featured in the May/June 2009 issue of New Moon Girls magazine! And every girl who is nominated gets special honor on our website. Learn more here.


Want inspiration? Read about Zella, who’s beautiful because she knows when to talk to a friend, and when to let her be alone. Jordan loves drawing manga and isn’t afraid to give an unpopular opinion. Check out these and more at the Beautiful Girls section of New Moon Girls.

New Moon Girls are Visionaries

Back in December we asked girls to tell us their Vision of Change for Girls with our new government coming in. Now their responses are featured in the Winter issue of Ms. Magazine along with people like Alice Walker, Shirley Tilghman (President of Princeton University), Kathy Najimy and Ani DiFranco! This is a great honor for New Moon and girls made it happen–Thanks!


CEO and Founder, New Moon Girl Media

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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

France to Limit Children's Cellphones

Should young children use cellphones? France and other countries say no because of concerns about radiation from the phones. This story comes from The Independent via Eco Child's Play via Dan Gould on PSFK.

Hot on the heels of a 2008 ban on television programs for kids under 3, France is getting strict with new rules which will limit children’s usage and access to mobile phones. New laws prohibit advertising aimed at children under the age of 12 and bans the sale of cell phones designed for kids under 6. New limits on the allowable amount of radiation emitted from phones, and laws mandating bundled headphones with every phone will be put in place as well. Although this ban is unique in Europe,
France joins a growing number of countries including Canada, Russia and Israel
who have all issued warnings and laws of varying degree against cell phone use
by developing children. Though a consensus has not been formed on the subject,
some researchers do believe excessive cell phone use may possess
a health risk

In the U.S. cellphone use is appearing in younger and younger kids. What do you think about their safety for your daughter?

Monday, January 12, 2009

Nominate a Beautiful Girl

Each girl has her own inner beauty: the beauty of action, caring, creativity, passion. Tell us about the inner beauty of your daughter, granddaughter, niece, neighbor or student and help us to inspire girls everywhere with their own unique inner beauty.

Every year since 2000, the May/June issue of New Moon Girls magazine features 25 girls ages 8-12 who are beautiful inside. Our Girls Editorial Board selects 25 girls (from those who are nominated) who represent many different aspects of inner beauty. Those girls are featured in the magazine. All the other girls who are nominated receive special recognition and are honored at

Anyone can nominate a girl – her family, someone in the community, another girl. And girls can also nominate themselves! I encourage you to nominate one or more girls by downloading the short form . Then complete the form and email it as an attached document to

The deadline is midnight Central Standard Time on Monday, January 19, so act today!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Inaugurate with Service

Barack Obama's inauguration is a little more than a week away and I'm looking forward to that historic day for our country. It's going to be exciting!

Many parents have told me that they're looking for ways to share the meaning of this special day with their children. One idea I like is to spend the day before inauguration (which just happens to be Martin Luther King Day, January 19) doing some sort of service. Look here for suggestions.

Just imagine doing this with your daughter--it will create special memories that stay with both of you. At a time when we face big challenges as a nation and as individuals, it carries the power of meaningful action. And it will give her the experience of true citizenship.

Let me know what you do - I can't wait to hear your stories.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Blog, Happy New Year


It’s All about Girls & the Future

Dear Blog,

New for Your Girl in January


It’s a New Year! The month of January is packed with great content & activities at New Moon Girls. Start off this week learning about the future—with articles about the future of the environment and technology; to original girl poetry!
Blog, check all this out (and more) online with your  girl s. Other weekly themes this month are Growing Up (What the Future Holds), Religion/Obama’s Inauguration, Name Calling, and Black Herstory Week.  Be sure to check New Moon Girls every week for new exciting content!

Content for YOU at

Have you noticed your  girl  changing—not just her body but the way she thinks? Ann talks about these changes in “Teach Her to Make a Better World.” And Stephanie talks about how the Arts gives  girl s a voice in “How the Arts Makes Girls Strong.” 
Are you concerned about how your  girl  is going to make the journey from childhood to teenhood? Mimi talks about this journey, and gives great tips in “Raising Compassionate Girls.” Check out these articles and more this week at

Parenting Poll Results

The results are in! We asked what you consider to be the most important factor when deciding when your daughter is ready to go online.

Thanks for participating in last week’s poll—please participate again in this week’s poll!
Her maturity and trustworthiness got the highest response at 44%. Twenty-four percent of you chose What web site she wants to visit. Third place was a tie between Her age and How available you are to supervise her at 16 percent.

New Magazine Feature


Are you excited for your  girl ’s future?!? A fun and inspiring activity to do together is writing a letter to her and your future selves! Check out the article “Dear Me,” on page 24 in your new Jan/Feb 2009 issue of New Moon Girls for starters for this awesome project!



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Happy Science Fiction Day!

Happy Science Fiction Day!

January 2nd is Science Fiction Day because January 2, 1920, was science fiction writer Isaac Asimov’s birthday. Isaac Asimov wrote over four hundred works and was best known for his science fiction stories, especially his Foundation series about a science which can be used to predict the future.

Science fiction isn’t all about spaceships and robots, though. Lois Lowry’s popular book, The Giver is an example of a science fiction “dystopia” novel. Dystopias are imaginary societies in which something makes the society dysfunctional. For example, in The Giver, people no longer feel strong emotions; this is supposed to stop suffering, but it also stops people from feeling great joy.

Although science fiction is mostly about the future or imaginary worlds, it often makes a point about the world we live in now. A story about a society where different races live in different cities can shed light on racism in our own time, and a story about a species where everyone is the same gender can get us thinking about gender roles in our society.

To celebrate Science Fiction Day, curl up with a favorite science fiction book—or better yet, check out the great girl-written science fiction stories right here on New Moon Girls, such as Mars by Kristen Reid, Being a Nobody by Emily, and Moon Fairy by Lola. Recommend your favorite science fiction books at the Rants & Raves Shout Out! boards. Upload your own science fiction stories to “your stuff.” And never stop stretching your imagination!



P.S. What better time to celebrate Science Fiction Day than at the beginning of a new year? We’re “making a new start” this week and looking toward the future. And we’ll keep talking about the future in the next two weeks with our themes of “The Future” (starting January 3) and “Growing Up” (starting January 10). And don’t forget to check out the current issue of New Moon Girls magazine, with the theme, “What the Future Holds”!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Holiday Reflections

Happy New Year, Happy Hannukah, Merry Christmas, Joyous Kwanzaa, and Happy Holidays!

I just wanted to write a quick note to say I hope all of you are enjoying the holidays with your friends and family. Joe and I were thrilled to have both our daughters (and Nia's fiance) visit last week. We had a wonderful, relaxing and fun time catching up and enjoying holiday treats.

Now they're all back home in San Francisco and we're missing them very much. As our daughters live their independent adult lives, we feel very proud. Just wish we could see each other without a plane ticket required!

Now that 2008 has drawn to a close, I marvel at all the changes and challenges of the past year, and am ready for an exciting 2009. We've seen a year of amazing events in our country and in the world. It's my wish that we carry the essence of the holidays – giving, love, compassion, companionship – into the new year.

While the New Year is a hopeful time, I can't ignore that it looks like it's going to be tough year financially for many of us. Nothing will help us through that as much as sharing with families and friends, and helping others however we can. That's my resolution for 2009 - to stay connected to family and friends and remember my connection to humanity at large.

I wish you and your loved ones all the best for the season and the year ahead!