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how to be a parent

February 3, 2012

First Tiger Mother author Amy Chua wanted to educate all of us on how to raise our children the Chinese way. And now Pamela Druckerman is planning to share French secrets on how to bring up a “Bebe.” I’m wondering – what qualifies either of these ladies  to dispense parenting advice?

Absolutely nothing. That’s what.

So in keeping with the theory that anyone can be a parenting expert, I’ve decided I want to share my own theories. Here’s the great thing though – I won’t make you buy a book. Or read a book. I’ll just summarize my advice – absolutely free!

  1. Don’t over-indulge children. Just because Dr. Brown has a fabulous marketing department promoting his bottle warmer doesn’t mean you actually have to run out and buy one. If you only give your child cold milk then cold milk is all they’ll ever know. Does this sound crazy? Maybe. But you’ll thank me when you’re on a flight to London and a bitchy flight attendant refuses to heat up your baby’s bottle. (Have you heard a baby scream for 11 hours? It’s not pretty. Save yourself.)
  2. Chicken nuggets are the exception, not the rule. I learned early on that in order to get your kid to love things like seaweed, green beans and swordfish you actually have to feed them seaweed, green beans and swordfish. They’ll give in eventually. Parenting is a battle of the wills and in my opinion, mini-people should not have a will.
  3. Teach kids how to behave. Bratty/messy/rude kids are not cute. Teach kids how to use a fork and a knife, how to sit still in a restaurant, how to write thank you notes, how to use a napkin, how not to interrupt, how to wait their turn, and most importantly, how to think about others before themselves (although I obviously need to practice what I preach here).

She's not perfect but she can behave in a restaurant. And appreciate a sunset.

So I’m a bit harsh – I get that. But the thing is that I have so little patience. So. Little. Patience.

Anyway, I could go on giving advice for hours – but I’ll spare you. Instead I’ll just conclude by saying that these so-called experts don’t have all the answers. They’re just regular mothers like me and you. Except they have book deals.

Which I don’t.

131 Comments leave one →
  1. February 3, 2012 12:06 am

    Oh goodness. My last post was about why I’d be a terrible parent! I dont have patience but worst of all, I’d name my kid a horrible, terrible name.

    • February 3, 2012 2:49 pm

      I am interested in knowing more about this “horrible, terrible name?”

  2. February 3, 2012 12:23 am

    I loved the book- Battle hymn of the tiger mother but I couldn’t emulate anything with my child. I am a softie and so is my hubby. But homeschooling her these days, I tend to have little patience and now am a lot stricter. I agree with you on all the 3 points. We all are experts as far as our kids are concerned.

    • February 3, 2012 2:50 pm

      Ali is a softie but I am quite the opposite. I suppose we balance each other out. Kind of. Except that I’m usually the one who prevails!

  3. February 3, 2012 12:25 am

    Ameena-great post. I fully support everything you are advising here. Oh, I think we’re pretty alike here…I could go on and on. But, right on about the food. Many have asked how I get my children to eat Salmon, green salad, and fresh vegetables. To which my answer is, feed it to them as soon as you can. And it eat it often, makes sense right?

    Over indulged children….so many things come to mind….and of course none of those things involves my children! Hahahahaha, no really, we’re not perfect parents either, but in our home the children have to earn everything (mostly everything).

    Children shouldn’t have too much of a will. Totally agreed. We’re living in a tricky time. Children should be able to make some small choices like whether they want to wash the windows or fold their laundry. 🙂 My husband and I talk about this a lot. We’re the parents, we are the ones giving guidance, not the other way around. See like you I could go on.

    You’re great, take care,


    Hey I’m usually around your 75th commentor. Amazing, I caught it at the beginning!

    • February 3, 2012 2:52 pm

      You make a good point…I suppose I should allow Maya to choose the dishes or the laundry…something to think about.

      Seriously though, I’m not perfect and neither is Maya. But we definitely are living in a tricky time and I think the stricter the better. At this age anyway.

  4. February 3, 2012 1:09 am

    Go for it Ameena! I read every word you write, nodding all the time, in perfect sync! Yes, we’ve all got the answers…and hope that you get a book deal soon! Kids are a different ball game altogether these days … and each of us come with our personalised book of rules. Whether they work or not is another story {or another future book}! As Shauna says above, we do live in tricky times, and ‘finger crossed’ times too! Hugs!!

    • February 3, 2012 2:53 pm

      So glad you can relate Deeba. Raising kids is a very different ball game from what our parents went through and I find it challenging every single day!

      Fingers crossed that Maya turns out okay. 🙂

  5. February 3, 2012 1:32 am

    Harsh is good! Kids are way spoiled these days…

    • February 3, 2012 2:53 pm

      Maya is still too spoiled for my own liking but I do my best to counteract what I can…

  6. February 3, 2012 2:39 am

    “Little people should not have a will”-absolutely wow! now if only my little one would let me have mine:-)
    Nodding all the way wit you here:-)

    • February 3, 2012 2:54 pm

      My fingers are crossed that your little one lets you have your will. 🙂

  7. squigglefloey permalink
    February 3, 2012 3:23 am

    Have you read Tiger Mom and would you recommend it? I read about Amy briefly and feel like she’s exactly like my Dad…haha. goodness…

    • February 3, 2012 2:55 pm

      I thought that all the hoopla surrounding Tiger Mom was just that…hoopla. The book is interesting, entertaining even, but I wouldn’t say it was as interesting as her interviews about the book.

      If that makes any sense?

      Anyway, I’d recommend getting the book from the library and reading it. Save your $$!

  8. February 3, 2012 4:24 am

    I would pay for your advice (or your humor). In NYC we are surrounded by kids whose parents give stuff vrs time who don’t say thank you and eat 3 foods. It’s a challange. I would choose tiger mother in a minute, though damaged I bet her kids behave.

    • February 3, 2012 2:56 pm

      I think LA and NYC are similar in that both cities have their fair share of spoiled kids.

      PS: I’d choose the Tiger Mom too…over a misbehaving kid.

  9. February 3, 2012 4:33 am

    No comment on this topic – I don’t have kids so today I feel slightly left out.

    • February 3, 2012 2:56 pm

      Don’t fret! I’ll be back to insulting poor Ali first thing next week. 🙂

  10. February 3, 2012 6:31 am

    I feel like some day, when I decide to procreate, there is the large possibility that you will become my mommy mentor. Expect no less than 37 emails per day. And this is everything:
    “mini-people should not have a will”.

    • February 3, 2012 2:57 pm

      I am looking forward to becoming your mommy mentor. Mostly because I never thought anyone would refer to me that way!!

  11. February 3, 2012 6:35 am

    My mom’s no expert. But I figure that my sister and I turned out ok, so some of her tactics may be valid. For example, always instill a little fear in your children. I see so many kids these days that step all over their parents because there are no boundaries, no limits, no rules, and most importantly, no fear. I don’t know if it’s an Indian thing, but trust me when i say, that fear kept me from doing a lot of stupid things when I was younger.

    • February 3, 2012 2:57 pm

      Fear is important! Without that how do you get your kids to listen? You don’t. Fear is good.

  12. February 3, 2012 6:48 am

    Great advice! Although I don’t have children, I have two small nieces and they don’t act up around me. I think it’s because I’ll adhere to rules that are easy to follow and use the treats as the exception theory you have. Besides, I hate bratty children, and I will openly make rude comments within earshot and make faces at those children and their parents. If they have no problem allowing their children to do that in public, then they shouldn’t be embarrassed when someone calls them on it.

    • February 3, 2012 2:58 pm

      I so want to say something when I see rude children but my fear of confrontation always prevents this from happening…I admire you for calling them on it!

  13. February 3, 2012 7:06 am

    Your #3 is so important, Ameena. It’s so frustrating to watch children misbehave in public. I remember how my sister and I were raised. We were taught to behave AT HOME. Then when we were in public, we knew how to behave and we knew what the consequences would be if we didn’t. My parents were wonderful and I’ll always be grateful that I was raised that way. There are so many parents that I see who don’t have a clue. I especially like the fact that you’re teaching Maya to appreciate the sunsets. 😉

    • February 3, 2012 2:59 pm

      Such a nice thing to say about your parents! And yes, we were taught at home how to behave outside. So eventually our behavior was the same no matter where we were, and we were always GOOD!

  14. February 3, 2012 7:11 am

    You sound like my parents! They were pretty strict about my brother and my behavior when we went out in public, which is how I think it should be. Misbehaving kids are not only embarrassing to parents but super annoying to everyone around them. The worst is when parents let their kids run all around the store. They’re just asking for something to go wrong.

    • February 3, 2012 3:00 pm

      Funny how parents of misbehaving kids are rarely embarrassed by their kids! I don’t get it.

  15. February 3, 2012 7:20 am

    Agree with these (especially # 3. I can’t stand kids who are not behave/don’t have manners in the restaurant and their parents think they are being cute!). Although I have to admit that I don’t have patient for #2. I never tried to give my kids broccoli (because I don’t like broccoli myself) so no wonder they don’t like it either. My fault.

    Also, if I might add, at least for me personally, I could never be my kids’ best friend until I act as their parents first. I love them and that means I will discipline and teach them what they need to know & behave.

    Have a great weekend!

    • February 3, 2012 3:01 pm

      Broccoli is my favorite vegetable! I’m surprised you don’t like it.

      And no, I could never be Maya’s friend. Maybe when she gets to be older but right now it’s tricky finding that balance.

      Hope you have a great weekend too!

      • February 3, 2012 6:30 pm

        Sorry, I meant to say “patience” not patient.. 🙂

  16. February 3, 2012 7:27 am

    Amen to that.
    You have to do what is right for you.
    Parenting takes common sense…not having a doctor tell you what you should do.
    And for the love of God teach your kid manners!

  17. February 3, 2012 7:33 am

    I completely agree with everything here. Maybe I am old fashioned but it seems there are too many parents who allow their kids to rule the roost. My closest friend has two boys who are constantly saying rude things to her and calling her names and she laughs it off. My kids would be losing privileges faster than they can blink if they tried that. You could write the part Indian mom parenting book perhaps since being from another culture seems to be all that sets these women apart

    • February 3, 2012 3:02 pm

      One of my brother’s friends used to tell him mom to F@#$-off. It shocked the living daylights out of me even when we were kids! She’d just ignore him. I don’t get it.

      A book about Indian parenting would be simple because it all boils down to this: make your kids study and listen to their elders. If they don’t, smack them.

  18. February 3, 2012 8:01 am

    love that you got the nuggets in there : )

    • February 3, 2012 3:03 pm

      Am I obsessed with the chicken nuggets? Maybe a bit.

  19. daisyiii permalink
    February 3, 2012 9:04 am

    this is excellent advice. you *should* have a book deal

    • February 3, 2012 3:03 pm

      Thank you Daisy! Crossing my fingers that it’ll happen in my lifetime.

  20. February 3, 2012 9:32 am

    ha ha- I think you’d write a fantastic book about raising kids- I’d definitely read it- I loved what you’ve already shared- very practical. Funny, I had just spoken to someone the other day who was reading the ‘tiger’ book in a book club and apparently a big fight broke out….and a lawyer (in the book club) was threatening to sue the writer for some things she said in the book ??? ha ha!!

    One thing I’ve realized in raising my kids is that EVERYONE thinks they have the answers….but the only people I really listen to are the ones who say,”You know what….I’m not sure…but this seemed to work…” ha ha….

    One woman (whose kids were VERY wild) once asked me (when my kids were in their teens)- “How in the world are your kids so wonderful?” (to which I was wondering WHOSE children she was referring to)
    I answered, “Oh I beat them regularly”
    She wasn’t sure whether she should laugh or believe me…ha ha!!

    • February 3, 2012 3:04 pm

      Funny, I always start my advice with, “This seemed to work for me…” so that I don’t come across as a so-called expert.

      And “I beat them regularly” sounds like something any good Indian parent would say. 🙂 I love it.

  21. February 3, 2012 9:41 am

    This is a great post! Setting rules and sticking to them seems like the hardest part of being a parent, but also the most rewarding.
    I’ll remember the bottle warmer when I’m a new mommy 😉

    • February 3, 2012 9:42 am

      As soon as I posted this, I thought of a million other “hardest parts” of being a parent. I’m impressed by you!

      • February 3, 2012 3:05 pm

        Wow. Thank you for writing this! I appreciate it more than you know.

        PS: Don’t get the bottle warmer or the wipe warmer. Make your life as easy as possible.

  22. February 3, 2012 10:49 am

    Conclusion: It’s your turn for a book deal. I’ll be your editor. I have little resume-worthy experience, but I was taught to write thank you cards and wait my turn, so I’m not doing too bad.

    P.S. You sound like a much better parent than those people who write books.

    • February 3, 2012 3:06 pm

      You get the importance of thank you cards! I am so happy! One day I am going to write a book just on the importance of thank you notes and you WILL be my editor. 🙂

      PS: Thank you. You are the best.

  23. February 3, 2012 10:52 am

    considering i’ve had the distinct pleasure of spending time with you and the outcome of your parenting rules, I can say that even if you don’t write a book, I will be seeking your advice when the day comes…

    • February 3, 2012 3:06 pm

      Maya loves you! Especially when you accompany us to Dylan’s. She is on her best behavior then. 🙂

  24. Jeena permalink
    February 3, 2012 11:16 am

    As a fellow impatient person, I think you’re the perfect expert because Maya is an amazing, amazing kid.

    • February 3, 2012 3:07 pm

      And you are an unbelievably kind and generous friend. Thank you!

  25. February 3, 2012 12:04 pm

    I’d totally buy your book. 🙂

    • February 3, 2012 3:07 pm

      Thank you Heather. Maybe one day! Fingers crossed.

  26. February 3, 2012 12:11 pm

    You are my hero. That is all. Oh and you don’t have a book deal…yet 🙂

    • February 3, 2012 3:08 pm

      Maybe one day my friend. In my lifetime hopefully!

  27. February 3, 2012 12:41 pm

    I really don’t understand why you don’t have a book deal. Clearly the publishing agents are slacking on the job! I think you have the best parenting advice of all time. I also need to learn how to sit still in a restaurant…

    • February 3, 2012 3:08 pm

      Thanks Andrea! I think my tendency to be sarcastic is lost on the publishing agents… not sure what other explanation makes me feel better here? 🙂

  28. February 3, 2012 12:46 pm

    You said it. I agree on all points. People are always amazed at how well my kids eat and I just tell them you have to start early. I am all for treats and short cuts, but like you said it has to be the exception.

    And I have told my kids on more than one occasion “Don’t test me, I’ll win every time” & I do.

    • February 3, 2012 3:09 pm

      I think my second motto is going to be, “Don’t test me.” My first is, “Mama says things ONCE.”

  29. February 3, 2012 12:47 pm

    Ameena, I have no clue about parenting, nor have I heard of those books, but when I saw how well Maya behaves, I was amazed. I’m so impressed she dines at Tao 🙂 It took me 20 some years to get there. She’s a really good kid and I saw that in only spending a couple hours with both of you.

    • February 3, 2012 3:10 pm

      Maya loves Tao! There isn’t a restaurant I wouldn’t take her now…of course when she was throwing food out of a high chair it was a different story!

      And on behalf of her, thank you for the compliment. 🙂

  30. February 3, 2012 12:49 pm

    Bravo! I agree, I agree, I agree. We must have had the same flight attendant on our way home from Armenia with Dudette that you did to London.

    • February 3, 2012 3:10 pm

      You must have been on British Airways? They are the worst. 😦

      • sharanya permalink
        February 5, 2012 9:59 pm

        Looks like you haven’t tried Air France,yet,nobody takes the cake wrt kids but them,I flew with them with a 9 month old and it still gives me the shivers..believe me even Ethiopian air will be better with kids..

      • February 6, 2012 9:44 am

        We’ve been on Air France several times, the most recent in December (LAX to CDG). It’s one of the worst airlines. In the world.

        But at least the food is good….

  31. February 3, 2012 2:30 pm

    Yes.Yes.Yes. Let me add to rule #3 – until they can behave properly in public and have the self control to act appropriately – DON’T TAKE THEM TO INAPPROPRIATE PLACES. I am always baffled when parents try to take wee children out to eat and then freak out when they can’t sit still (although, I will admit, the freaking out parents is better than the parent ignoring or facilitating their child’s antics). Our children don’t know what “out to eat” is yet. And the entire world is better for it.

    • February 3, 2012 3:11 pm

      Agreed. Until Maya was out of a high chair I didn’t take her to places where I had to worry about her behaving. And if we were in a place and she wasn’t behaving I’d leave immediately!

      Why don’t other parents get this concept? I’m so confused.

  32. February 3, 2012 6:07 pm

    I don’t think there A RIGHT way to raise our children. I believe we can only raise them the best way we know.

  33. February 3, 2012 9:51 pm

    i dont think thats harsh at all, infact if all parents were this way the world would be a better place minus all the screaming howling kids! still chuckling over ‘mini people’

  34. February 4, 2012 2:16 am

    with your writing skills, I am actually surprised that you don’t have a book deal. Would be one hilarious read if it gets materialized I tell ya…but then you’ll have to fed ex me a signed copy 😀

    • February 4, 2012 8:34 pm

      If I ever get a book deal I’ll Fedex you a copy in a second. I promise!!

  35. February 4, 2012 3:06 am

    I always thought I’ll be a “tough” mommy (with all the right diet, discipline etc) and my hubby will be a softie. but now we have a dog and I’m the one spoiling her with treats and my hubby wants to discipline her, and keep her slim and healthy. I guess you never know until you get a child…

    • February 4, 2012 8:35 pm

      I always knew I’d be a hard a$$…some things are just obvious. 🙂

  36. February 4, 2012 4:55 am

    I’m not a momma yet, so I can’t say that I’ve read any of those books, but I think I’d be most interested in your parenting advice. Why is it that people – grown people – don’t write thank you notes anymore? Someone bought you a wedding present. Write them a freaking note. Don’t just send them a picture. Sometimes we have to do things in life we don’t want to do, like eat more than chicken nuggets. I’m so glad you get that!

    • February 4, 2012 8:36 pm

      I just don’t get the lack of thank you notes. It seriously drives me crazy! Especially when I don’t get a thank you for a wedding gifts…it’s like, if you are old enough to get married you are old enough to thank me for my gift!

  37. February 4, 2012 5:28 am

    My sister in law thinks it’s absolutely hysterical that her 3 year old and 1 year old scream like murdered monkeys in a store or restaurant…unacceptable. My kids aren’t perfect, but they know how to behave in public, they save their antics for the privacy of home 😉

    • February 4, 2012 8:36 pm

      Is your SIL just immune to the dirty looks she must get? This confuses me…

  38. February 4, 2012 7:45 am

    I love this. So true. No one “knows better” – they just know what works for them.

    Should I have a child it is my only parenting goal to have my child eat at a fine dining restaurant – eat off the adult menu – and enjoy their meal properly with the adults… sans electronic dvd device. Is that too much to ask?

    And should I ever have this child I would definitely want you to expand upon this post. I will follow any advice you have to share! 🙂

    • February 4, 2012 8:37 pm

      I get SO frustrated when Ali hands Maya his iPhone at dinner. It drives me bananas! I’m so with you on that.

      And I am so honored you would want my advice! I hope you ask away when the time comes.

  39. February 4, 2012 8:10 am

    I have always wondered why bottles have to be heated up … I suppose they don’t! Love that piece of advice!

    • February 4, 2012 8:38 pm

      People want you to think bottles have to be a certain temp but they don’t! Common myth.

  40. February 4, 2012 10:51 am

    I have not read Amy Chua’s book but I don’t see what the brouhaha over Chinese parenting is…or French for that matter. It’s all trial and error, I feel.

    • February 4, 2012 8:39 pm

      Trial and error is right. I have a whole lot of that going on….even now!

  41. February 4, 2012 11:02 am

    Somebody should totally give you a book deal! I’m not a parent (obviously) but those all seem like sound tips – especially the one about food. Apparently a kid needs to see a new food up to 20 times before he/she will try it, most people would give up after the first 8 times.

    And my mom sat us down and taught us to eat with a knife and fork – it took over 3 hours (don’t ask we were slow kids) but it was worth it to her when flight attendants/waitresses would fawn over how “well behaved” we were. 🙂

    • February 4, 2012 8:40 pm

      My dad gave me the same 3 hour lesson. I guess I was a slow learner too. 🙂

  42. February 4, 2012 1:55 pm

    Great tips, Ameena! While I don’t have kids (and usually keep my mouth closed because I can’t say that I know what it’s like), misbehaved children at restaurants are a real pet peeve of mine. I bet Maya is a doll when you take her out!

    • February 4, 2012 8:40 pm

      I have the same pet peeve and I have a child! So with you on that one.

      And Maya mostly behaves herself. Otherwise I pull her out of the restaurant asap and we have a little chat…

  43. February 4, 2012 3:07 pm

    LOVE LOVE LOVE your parenting advice.
    Simple manners and etiquette is one of the MOST IMPORTANT things that I’m trying to teach my girls.

    • February 4, 2012 8:41 pm

      Glad you agree Deena! I knew we were on the same wavelength…

  44. February 4, 2012 3:21 pm

    Yeah I totally agree first of all if you do not eat anything but chicken nuggets neither are your children. As for the will there is a Polish saying that kids and fish do not have a voice. Of course me and my husband disagree on Point 1, 2 and 3 especially when it comes to my step daughter, which makes for an amazing teenager 😉

  45. caloricandcrazy permalink
    February 4, 2012 7:05 pm

    I think this blog proves the fact that you SHOULD land a book deal. Your advice/observations/experiences would make for a fun read 😉

    • February 4, 2012 8:42 pm

      Thank you for saying so! You just made my evening. 🙂

  46. February 4, 2012 7:49 pm

    Those sound like pretty sound rules. I’ve never understood only giving kids “kid foods” – I was feeding them what we ate from the time they were old enough to try it. As a result they love sushi and so on. Of course, given how expensive good food is, maybe that was a grave mistake on my part,

    • February 4, 2012 8:43 pm

      I love that Maya eats sushi but you are so right! It is expensive!!

  47. February 4, 2012 11:05 pm

    the so-called experts probably aren’t even damn mothers!

    good advice! :)))

  48. February 4, 2012 11:25 pm

    I think you should definitely write a book because what you say seems real and I do not hav kids but I still get the meaning of what you are writing 🙂

  49. February 5, 2012 9:18 am

    I’m not a mother yet, but I think your tips are spot on! Apart from the healthy eating, which I had to teach myself, this is how my parents raised me. Manners and politeness were always a number one priority, and I’m definitely going to follow this when it comes to my own kids.

    • February 6, 2012 7:59 pm

      I had to learn to eat healthy too! I used to sneak ice cream for breakfast, how terrible (and gross) is that?

  50. February 5, 2012 9:25 am

    Hmm, I’m not sure if my comment posted! But I just wanted to say that although I’m not (yet) a parent, I totally agree with your thoughts & advice.

  51. February 5, 2012 9:28 am

    Whoops, now they BOTH posted. *grumble*

  52. February 5, 2012 12:49 pm

    Haha! I think “how-to”s are a little silly…like the “Tiger Mom” one…which does not sound entirely true anyway (if you read her interviews after the back lash Amy Chua got)…
    Anyway…I like your tips, a few little tips are so much more sensable than a generic how-to book…as if kids come in “one size fits all”!

    • February 6, 2012 8:07 pm

      I think “How-To’s” are the worst because usually the people dishing out the advice aren’t qualified! Drives me nuts.

      PS: thanks for the compliment. 🙂

  53. February 5, 2012 6:25 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more. It’s how we train our kids which requires a lot of patience. Parenting is a tough job.

  54. February 5, 2012 7:04 pm

    And there you go again, singing the song of my heart. Nothing enrages me more than parents with “picky eaters” who only serve their children bland, carbohydrate-laden, uninteresting foods.

    Billy (my brother) and I always picked up compliments on vacation for being able to behave ourselves through multi-course meals. Why? Because Mom and Dad taught us that was normal. Everyone else was the exception.

    • February 6, 2012 8:59 pm

      You are going to have the most well-behaved kids Kat. I just know it.

  55. February 5, 2012 9:58 pm

    I yearn for the day when my kid can sit still at a restaurant!

  56. February 5, 2012 11:05 pm

    Well, since I don’t have kids I am clearly an expert on this subject, and can tell you that your advice is awesome. My brother and I were really good as kids. We behaved in public, our friends parents loved us, we had manners, all that. Want to know why? Because that’s what our parents taught us. If we didn’t do as we were told, bad things were sure to happen. I never understand these people that let their children run wild in the middle of a mall, or worse, bank. That’s not ok.

    • February 6, 2012 9:00 pm

      “Bad things were sure to happen.” That’s exactly what we were so well-behaved!

  57. February 6, 2012 4:56 pm

    I would totally read a book on parenting by you. It would be hilarious! And clever! And just wonderful. Thank you for sharing…and thank you for all the support. It means more to me than you know. Hugs and love from Austin.

  58. February 6, 2012 9:26 pm

    Num 2 is spot on. We didn’t know what junk food tasted like for the longest time. And even when we did find out, we weren’t given a choice. We ate it when my mom didn’t feel like cooking (which was a rarity) and NOT when we wanted to eat it.

    For what it’s worth, I think you totally deserve your own book. Lord knows Maya is the most well behaved kid on this size of the Atlantic.

    • February 7, 2012 9:45 am

      I think the key is that none of us were given a choice. I don’t think this is necessarily a bad thing…not sure why parents today think kids need so many choices?

  59. February 7, 2012 3:19 am

    I’m so glad you wrote this! I feel like every time I turn on the computer some new (and previously unheard of) expert is telling me all the reasons why I’m a lousy parent, but you’re right: these women are just regular moms like me, but with book deals, and there’s absolutely no reason take them too seriously or treat them like a authority figures.

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one whose noticed!

  60. February 7, 2012 6:35 am

    With this advice, you should have a book deal. I’d read it. I agree with you wholeheartedly on all of the above – especially #3.

  61. February 7, 2012 10:04 am

    I loved the Tiger MOm book. It was supremely entertaining. And of course its not a manual for parenting, because NONE EXISTS. Instead of reading books, people should be reading BLOGs and having real friends and real discussions and if we had those, we’d feel a little bit more energetic and confident to be PARENTS (with wills…) You are a gem!

  62. February 8, 2012 4:28 pm

    Okay, with these strategies you’ll probably either rear a monster or a saint. 😉

    Seriously: I’m absolutely with you on the politeness and chicken nuggets! 🙂

  63. February 8, 2012 6:37 pm

    Not a parent just yet, so I am reserving my comments until appropriate 🙂

  64. February 9, 2012 11:41 am

    Well man!

  65. February 10, 2012 6:34 am

    I agree with you 100%. I’m not always disciplined enough to put it into practice (notably in allowing my kids to eat ketchup on their pasta like their dad) but I agree with you.

  66. March 7, 2012 12:39 pm

    Love the mini-people line- LOL!

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