Thursday, August 8, 2013

Reading currently.

I have been reading a lot lately.
A little of this, a little of that, and a lot of parenting books.


 While on vacation, I read a delightful book that my sweet friend let me borrow:
In my opinion, he is the most hilarious, outrageously clever author of our time. 
This one is about his everyday interactions and struggles that we all can relate to, infused with bits of his neurosis and silly wit.
I was laughing out loud at least every other paragraph, seriously driving my husband crazy.
An absolute must-read.


Upon returning home and being reunited with our once-sweet daughter,
I have refocused my leisure page-turning to that of a more emotional variety: parenting books.

I am at a complete loss. 
My kid hates us. No, she doesn't. Probably not. I have no idea.
One minute she is the sweetest, wittiest, most charming little girl, 
the next she is screaming, spitting (yep, you read that right), and generally driving us mad. 
Because all I want to do is scream right back at her (I don't, I won't),
I need all the help I can get, any words of encouragement for how we can keep the peace until this delightful phase passes us by.

When Ramona was still a baby, my husband and I started to read Alfie Kohn's wonderful book, Unconditional Parenting.
It was highly recommended to us by one of the most inspirational parents we know, so naturally we gravitated towards it.
At the time, it was more about idealizing the perfect way to parent and discipline, 
seeing as our child was only eating, sleeping, and pooping.

Now that discipline is very much a part of our every day, and well, three-year-olds just insist on making you feel like you're doing everything all wrong, we have decided it's time to digest this one from our new perspective as parents.
He discusses common beliefs and practices in parenting, and more importantly, he explains why what we most likely experienced growing up was harmful and that we are probably using the same tactics on our own children.

It basically comes down to this:
do we want our children to feel that there are certain conditions to be met in order for us to love them,
or do we want our children to feel loved no matter what?
The answer seems obvious, but the way we treat our children might be sending them the wrong message.

I've cried. I've felt guilty, frustrated, confused.
This book brings every insecurity you have as a parent to the surface,
and provides you with the opportunity to understand your children,
and especially your relationship with them, in a whole new light.
 Read this book.


I am doubling up on the parenting books, because, like I said, I'm desperate.
I was drawn to Dr. Laura Markham's book Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids because the title is everything I want in this whole world.
Then I read that she relied on recent research on brain development to format her approach to parenting, and, well, SOLD.
It's positive, emotional, and rooted in fostering deep connections with your children in order to
avoid all of the punishments, threats, and other control tactics that simply don't work (read Kohn's book).
I am only about halfway through this one, as I have been pretty entranced by Unconditional Parenting,
yet I am already convinced that it was well worth the $11.



  1. I love David Sedaris and think he is so darn funny and often wonder how does he think of this stuff?

    My daughter is only one and I am dreading even saying the word discipline because even know it's lots of redirecting and explaining to her why she shouldn't do something. I am going to jot these books down and add them to my reading list. I read a ton of books while pregnant and my favorite was gentle discipline. I know children have to learn lessons and make mistakes and sometimes the hard way and not maybe understanding why especially being so little.. but I'm not looking forward to it.

    1. Disciplining is so difficult, and I always try to be as peaceful as possible with my daughter, but let's be real, it's really really hard to do that. These books are helping me to find my inner calm, and writing this post gives me the comfort that other people share in my struggle :) Good luck to you, as she ages and assuredly becomes more difficult to reason with! ;)

  2. Love this post and understanding every bit. thanks for sharing. xo

    1. Thanks, dear. Kids are silly, irrational creatures :)

  3. I love Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne. I am going to look in to your suggestions as well :)

    Love your blog by the way, and your Ramona is adorable! She seems to have so much personality.
    I, too, have a 3.5 year old (boy). This age is getting me to dive deeper into parenting books as well! Ahh!!