Child(ish) Reads: Thirty Million Words

This book appeared on my radar earlier this year. Author Dana Suskind, M.D. just came out with a new title, Parent Nation: Unlocking Every Child’s Potential, Fulfilling Society’s Promise, and this was one of her previous books listed in her bio. Thirty Million Words was available from my library, so I gave it a try on a work trip in April.

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Family Values on Vacay

Family vacations can be a gift or a curse. In our last post, we shared how a trip with the kids can prove to be equally a gift and a hassle, especially if you’re not prepared and basing expectations on a previous double-income-no-kids lifestyle.

But, please don’t be discouraged. Family vacations are definitely worth the investment. We’re planning a family beach trip later this summer, and it’s already created a positive shift around the house.

Research shows that family vacations provide so many benefits for both you and your kids. Let’s break it down.

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When a vacation is not

After my Worst Day Ever, I am very familiar with when a family vacation is more of a gauntlet. 
One of my close friends even imparted that if you are traveling with kids, it’s a trip; not a vacation. The element of “relaxation” that we take vacations for can be non-existent. 

Being a frequent traveler since I was a child, it was very important to me to expose the girls to new places from an early age. Being comfortable on a plane, trying new foods, seeing nature in its different forms; it’s a big priority for us. We’ve taken the girls on a handful of big trips since they were born, but honestly, none of them have been relaxing. 

Beach trips, road trips, family trips; while they all are an escape from our professional jobs, it’s really just 24/7 parenting in a new location.

So here are some things to keep in mind to help you prepare for the additional turbulence that comes with little kids on vacation.

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PTO: Parenting Time Off

When we were first talking about this article, Patti mentioned that she needed to teach her kids personal space. It seemed like every time her girls needed something, they would physically crawl all over her. While this is cute with babies, twin toddlers coming from all sides feels a bit like quicksand.

Let’s face it. Parenting is a full-time job. There’s no such thing as taking a real break from it. So, when it comes to catching some R and R for a moment, how do you tell your kid?

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Child(ish) Reads: The School for Good Mothers

Surprise! This is the first time Child(ish) Reads has reviewed a fiction title. So, a couple rule changes:

  1. I’m not going to spoil the ending.
  2. There will be no actual “advice”.
  3. Judgement-free zone here. Let’s call it a mix between a book review and coffee chat.

The School for Good Mothers by Jessamine Chan

Blurb: Frida Liu is struggling. She doesn’t have a career worthy of her Chinese immigrant parents’ sacrifices. She can’t persuade her husband, Gust, to give up his wellness-obsessed younger mistress. Only with Harriet, their cherubic daughter, does Frida finally attain the perfection expected of her. Harriet may be all she has, but she is just enough.

Until Frida has a very bad day.

The state has its eyes on mothers like Frida. The ones who check their phones, letting their children get injured on the playground; who let their children walk home alone. Because of one moment of poor judgment, a host of government officials will now determine if Frida is a candidate for a Big Brother-like institution that measures the success or failure of a mother’s devotion.

Faced with the possibility of losing Harriet, Frida must prove that a bad mother can be redeemed. That she can learn to be good.

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