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17 June 2010


All that and drop dead gorgeous, too. What a priceless photo. Her smile brings tears to my eyes. Yep, she's definitely a keeper, mom. ; )

You go, girl! Wishing you the very best.


P.S. I love her name!


I stumbled onto your blog, saw this beautiful photo of your Malaika. I remember you both from the "Electric Cafe" days! My how she has grown into such a lovely gal...all the best to you and yours.

Sharon! Nice to see you! Yes, she's really grown up beautifully. Thank you for stopping by!

Susan—"Malaika" comes from a Swahili folk song that Miriam Makeba made popular. It means "angel." See if you can find the music: it's a hauntingly beautiful song. We heard it when I was seven months pregnant, and we knew that THIS was her name. (We knew she was going to be a girl, intuitively, and we knew what her spirit was like. Everyone sensed her depth, really, before she was even born.)

Oh, I love my girl.


Congratulations Malaika!
And to you both as well Tana. As parents, you must be so proud.
Thanks for sharing this photo and this detail.
Charlie and I wish Malaika continued success with whatever she decides to pursue.


"She's a... liberal's liberal" That single tidbit of information made me instanly loose all respect for her no matter all her many accomplishments. How sad, I thought. How an educated, genuine truth seeking person can call themselves a Liberal is really beyond the pale. Here's hoping she NEVER enters politics. I am a farmer first and a truth seeking constitutional conservative second. I pray your daughter someday finds real truth in spite of her liberal upbringing. Everyone deserves the truth. Don't you agree?

No, Anonymous Commenter, I do not agree.

Your misspellings and erroneous punctuation, and lack of everything that resembles educated thought, makes me ever more certain that intelligence (in a diverse and far-reaching sense) is the hallmark of people who have broadened their education by reading. William F. Buckley must be vomiting in his grave. (And he, a Conservative's Conservative.)

My daughter is a kind, intelligent, loving, creative soul. If you somehow think she is in error, I pity you.

1) Never mind your lack of punctuation…it's spelled "lose" and not "loose" (which is like "a loose stone" or "a loose screw"…see "Glenn Beck").
2) "Instantly" is how it's spelled.
3) I am guessing that when you refer to the Constitution (which should be capitalized) that you mean the Bible Constitution that people ignorant of the actual Founding Fathers ("separation of Church and State," anyone?) usually refer to. It is fictional. It does not exist.

Please leave my beloved, brilliant daughter—a light on this planet even to her aunts, who are freaking Teabaggers (Teabeggers?).

And maybe go join Westboro Church. They need more haters who do not care for information unless it suits their hateful purposes.

Shame on the anonymous cowards who comment. You are like all the cowards. You know where I am, and taunt me, but no one can see how you farm, or live, or anything. Pah!

Congratulations Tana, she's lovely. What a tremendous milestone!

I do have to tell you how sad it made me to see that anonymous coward's comment. Good for you. Our children are our greatest gifts in life, how dare someone who is filled with angst and political obsession impose his/her opinion here. Inappropriate at best. I'm trying to hold it down, I have a daughter too!

May your beautiful daughter have the life of her dreams, the life she has worked so very hard thus far to obtain.

Joanne Firth

P.S. I too, am a liberal.

Hi Tana,

Long time no see your blog. Loved what you wrote about Malaika's graduation. It was an honor to be there with you. She's a gem, and so are you. Well done, Momma.

Love ya, mean it,

I feel I must comment, even though this post is a bit old (and I actually already read it awhile ago) because I cannot let the clearly ignorant comment by coffmon be the last thing on this post.

You have every right to be absolutely proud of your daughter. She's not only accomplished, intelligent, and, let's face it, beautiful (if that photo is any evidence) but she was obviously raised my amazing people who know that the term "liberal" is not a slur, but rather something to be proud of.

Congratulations to Malaika! Clearly she has lived up to her name, and I can only expect that whatever path she takes (neuroscience to art) I'm sure she will succeed. How could she not, with parents like you?

Tara, this is a lovely tribute. Please send my congratulations and best wishes to Malaika, and this small piece of advice: don't fear failure. After I graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Dartmouth College in 1987, I stalled out, afraid to commit to any particular career. I was good academically -- I knew how to "do school" -- but I didn't know how to be really good at anything else in the so-called real world. Eventually I found a fruitful, fulfilling path, but I took a hard and circuitous route. The second half of my advice to Malaika is to seek help and cultivate mentors, because unlike at school, you don't have to "do life" all on your own.

Finally, I feel compelled to say that I'm a liberal's liberal, too.


Congratulations Tana and family! This great day finally came.

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