The Sh!t No One Tells You: A Guide to Surviving Your Baby’s First Year By: Dawn Dais
There comes a time in every new mother’s life when she finds herself staring at her screaming, smelly “bundle of joy” and wishing someone had told her that her house would reek of vomit, or that she shouldn’t buy the cute onesies with a thousand impossible buttons, or that she might cry more than the baby. Best-selling humor author Dawn Dais, mother to a one-year-old and author of The Nonrunner’s Marathon Guide for Women, is convinced that there is a reason for this lack of preparedness. She believes that a vast conspiracy exists to hide the horrific truth about parenting from doe-eyed expectant mothers who might otherwise abandon their babies in hospitals and run for it. In The Sh!t No One Tells You, Dais tells it like it is, revealing what it’s really like to be a new parent and providing helpful insights, humor, and hope for those who feel overwhelmed by the exhausting trials they’re suddenly facing. Eschewing the adorableness that oozes out of other parenting books, Dais offers real advice from real moms—along with hilarious anecdotes, clever tips, and the genuine encouragement every mom needs in order to survive the first year of parenthood.
OMG I freaking love this book. Buy it. Now.
Did you buy it?
I hope so because if you’re about to have a baby or just had one or have ever had one then you will greatly appreciate this book. It will remind you of that dark time when your child was first born and all the stuff you went through and just how much your life changed.
For the better. Of course. Right. Better. Yeah. Love my daughter.
Anyway, there is advice in the book but for the most part I just enjoyed the funny stories she had and the fact that I was reading someone that had the same feelings that I did. As much as I love my daughter, and I do, a lot happened when she was born. A lot that people just don’t want to talk about unless it recently happened to them.
I highly recommend this book for anyone that is thinking about having kids. It gives you a very real idea about what will happen. It’s not all hugs and kisses there’s a lot of poop and vomit and crying.
All Joy and No Fun: The Paradox of Modern Parenthood By Jennifer Senior
In All Joy and No Fun, award-winning journalist Jennifer Senior isolates and analyzes the many ways in which children reshape their parents’ lives, whether it’s their marriages, their jobs, their habits, their hobbies, their friendships, or their internal senses of self. She argues that changes in the last half century have radically altered the roles of today’s mothers and fathers, making their mandates at once more complex and far less clear. Recruiting from a wide variety of sources-in history, sociology, economics, psychology, philosophy, and anthropology-she dissects both the timeless strains of parenting and the ones that are brand new, and then brings her research to life in the homes of ordinary parents around the country. The result is an unforgettable series of family portraits, starting with parents of young children and progressing to parents of teens. Through lively and accessible storytelling, Senior follows these mothers and fathers as they wrestle with some of parenthood’s deepest vexations-and luxuriate in some of its finest rewards. Meticulously researched yet imbued with emotional intelligence, All Joy and No Fun makes us reconsider some of our culture’s most basic beliefs about parenthood, all while illuminating the profound ways children deepen and add purpose to our lives. By focusing on parenthood, rather than parenting, the book is original and essential reading for mothers and fathers of today-and tomorrow.
So much information in this book. The whole thing it citied and researched incredibly thoroughly so I’m pretty sure she knows what she’s talking about. It goes through each stage of a child’s growth and talks about how this effects the parents, not about the child. It was nice to read something about the parent’s side of things and not just the child’s.
It was interesting, also, to basically see the evolution of parent’s and what is expected of them over the last hundred years or so. Back in the day kids were free labor now they’re economically useless. It’s amazing how much things have changed in a relatively short period of time.
Well it’s been about two months since the doctor said we could start feeding the boss rice cereal. She’s up to eating about two tablespoons almost every day. We’ve even started feeding her some “real” food.
Why did I want this again? Why was I excited about making my own baby food? Was I crazy?
So carrots, yeah, carrots. They’re good for you, right? They don’t taste bad, right? I like carrots, so does my husband. Naturally she’s going to love them! WhooHoo carrots, no more blah rice cereal.
Yeah…About that. Evidently carrots are the most horrible thing ever created and oh my god am I trying to poison her?
Well that was a bust. The looks on her face were priceless and caught on video. Next up avocado.
Well that went over a little bit better but it’s hard to keep them in the house and she only eats about a quarter of one at a time.
The most recent and so far most successful food introduction has been butternut squash. Weird, but whatever works.
Side note, her poop is so much more disgusting now.
One of the joys of being a parent is that, should you all make it, when your child is older you will get to remind them of moments in time that were truly embarrassing. Like the fact that you liked to streak through the neighborhood until you were almost five. If you’re lucky you have younger siblings and those moments are spread between you. Downside of siblings though they too will share your embarrassing moments.
I liked to write my sister’s embarrassing moments in my 1st grade journal and then read them aloud to the class. My favorite story was of her birth and how she was born pooping. By the time she was an hour old she’d pooped something like four times all over multiple nurses. My teacher loved this story so much she brought in another teacher to hear it. Ah good times.
My daughter’s first embarrassing story will be of the time she first met her extended family at Christmas. She was sitting on my lap wearing just a onesie because it was so hot in the house. We were all around the dinner table talking when she decided it was time for her fourth poop of the day. When she was just eating breast milk her poops were explosive and runny. She let lose one loud fart and before I could even move hot, runny, mustard like poop had shot out of her diaper and was falling down my leg and to the floor.
It was everywhere.
Not even an hour later she spit up all over my chest creating a nice little pond in my shirt between my boobs.
There were several wardrobe changes all around that day.
I look forward to more embarrassing stories to fill my arsenal for the days when she’s a teenager and embarrassed by me.
I don’t want to be financially responsible any more. It’s not fun and there aren’t as many cool things. I want to spend money like there’s no tomorrow. I want to own things that I only kind of need. I want to throw caution to the wind and buy whatever the fuck takes my fancy.
This mood strikes me every now and then and if I’m not careful it’s when I max out my credit cards. Then I spend the next few months/years paying them off.
Things are a lot tighter since we had our baby. I quit my job and then I didn’t have enough time to do the work from home job I had. Somebody didn’t like mommy to do anything but hold and feed her. I’m not naming names though.
We are now a one income household. A lot of pressure for my husband to deal with, I assume. He assures me he’s fine, but the man keeps everything inside so who knows.
He recently changed jobs and with the change came a pay raise but it only made up a little less than a quarter what I was making. I could go back to work but daycare would end up taking half my pay and the person taking care of her could never love her as much as I do.
We don’t want me to go back to work and right now that’s not the plan. For now I’ll just have to suck it up and not buy a Kindle Fire HDX 8.9 and Frozen and…
Being an adult really blows sometimes.
As anyone who has, or has been around, kids know they find a favorite movie and watch it over and over and over and over again. Eventually you will know every line, every change in pitch, every joke in the entire movie. It will haunt you in your sleep and you will years later find yourself still quoting it to people, just to prove you can.
Here is a list of movies that I think I could survive viewing a hundred plus times.
- Frozen. Great songs, good story, and the girl saves herself in the end. Sure it will probably get annoying in the end but I think I could tolerate watching it a couple hundred times until then.
- The Princess and the Frog. Love this movie. I saw it in theaters and I didn’t even have a child. Great classic Disney animation and seriously underrated. Downside, the villain might give my daughter nightmares and I would like to avoid interrupted sleep.
- Beauty and the Beast. I hesitate with this one, just because I did actually watch this a few hundred times growing up and I’m not sure if could take a couple hundred more viewings. However the recent Blu Ray transfer was incredible and I already know all the songs.
- The Goonies. Love the Goonies, who doesn’t? Commies, that’s who. If you don’t like The Goonies, than fuck you. That would be the downside actually to watching the Goonies, my beautiful lovely daughter would develop a foul mouth. I don’t think they drop the f bomb but I distinctly remember some language going on.
- The Princess Bride. She’s already going to have to love this since it’s one of my favorite movies of all time. Maybe I’ll be the one that picks a favorite movie and forces her to watch it over and over again.
- Richie Rich. I should start her desire for expensive things early right? What better movie to watch on repeat than a movie that will make you dissatisfied with what you’ve got.
- State Fair. A Rodgers and Hammerstein movie with amazing songs and a great story. Not to mention a huge pig.
- The Wizard of Oz. Another favorite of mine. The flying monkeys never bothered me so hopefully they don’t scare her. Still if she could avoid developing a need to purchase every single special edition that comes out that would be good.
- Meet the Robinsons. Another movie with great songs. I do tear up a bit so that would be a downside but I’ll deal with it.
- The Incredibles or Finding Nemo. I can’t decide on the last one. I wanted a Pixar movie but couldn’t pick between these two. Finding Nemo makes me teary eyed but there are righteous turtles. The Incredibles has super powers. Tough decision.
Side note Pixar is working on a sequel The Incredibles.
This has been a rough week. Last weekend, while on a little mini-vacation, my great-aunt passed away. We were already close to my family, location wise, so my dad picked me and the boss up and brought us home for the funeral. My husband had to go back to work so wasn’t able to come.
Obviously this was a pretty stressful time but the boss worked great as a distraction. An adorable way to just step back and think happy thoughts. She was passed around to everyone and took it all in stride, grinning and pulling glasses off left and right.
There were only a few fussy times and that was just her reminding me she needed to be fed or it was nap time.
The drive home was a little harder, nine hours is rough for anyone, but she could have done a lot worse. It really helped to have my mother and cousin along for the ride.
My Aunt Jo will be missed greatly, but I’m glad that she was able to meet my daughter before she left us.
It has been over five months since my last vacation/sick day. This is the longest I’ve probably ever gone in almost a decade. I had food poisoning recently but my new boss wouldn’t let me take any time off. I threw up and minutes later she was screaming at me to get back to work.
It’s never ending. She’s happy. She’s mad. She wants me to get her food. She wants me to get her new clothes. Will it ever stop?
I’ve worked for some real pieces of work before but never someone who is such a task master. She’s constantly giving me orders and her moods are forever changing. I swear if she wasn’t so adorable I’d quit. She just flashes me one of her gorgeous smiles or laughs one of her contagious laughs and all thoughts of searching for a new job fly out the window.
I’ve got to go I hear her screaming my name. Wonder what she wants now?
I’ve talked a lot about pumping lately and I’m sorry if it’s getting boring. It’s just that I’ve learned a lot about it recently and it takes up a ton of my time.
So that this blog is slightly different I’m going to post all the pumping gear I use that has worked very well.
First and obviously the most important item, the breast pump. I use the Medela Pump in Style Advanced Pump with Go Tote (long name). The tote has been great to have, even when I’m not traveling I use it to keep clean bottles that are ready to go. It also comes with a battery pack so that if I don’t have access to an electrical outlet I can still use it. That was awesome when we were traveling.
We tried several bottles. We were given some Gerber bottles and an AVENT bottle but the ones that have worked the best were the Dr. Brown’s bottles. The Gerber bottles were cheap dinky bottles, so probably not their best, but they caused her to spit up a lot. The AVENT bottle was a fat bottle and since her other bottles were skinny it was always a bit difficult for her to go to.
I didn’t register for a bottle warmer because, you see, I was going to breastfeed. I didn’t need a bottle warmer, I don’t even know why I registered for bottles since I truly didn’t think I would ever need it. However, a cousin purchased one for me. It has been so great to have. She use to drink a bottle cold but then my someone ran warm water over her bottle and she realized she preferred it warm. At one point she would only take a bottle that was warmed and had warm water run over the nipple. So picky.
My daughter had thrush so we had to sterilize everything every day. At first I just used a huge pot of boiling water, but that took about half an hour since I had so much stuff. Her thrush also didn’t go away. So we bought a sterilize. None of my mom friends had a recommendation and the reviews on all the sterilizers online had conflicting reviews. I didn’t want anything that was put in the microwave and I hate our dishwasher so didn’t want to use it. I ended up choosing the AVENT Electric Steam Sterilizer. Several reviews mentioned a problem with rust so I was worried, but after three months no issues. The trick, I believe, is that after every use don’t let the bottles sit very long and wipe down everything, especially the bottle element.
Well those are my recommendations and my experiences. I hope that they help.
How Children Succeed: Grit, Curiosity, and the Hidden Power of Character
By: Paul Tough
This was a very interesting book to read, there are tons of sources cited in the back of the book, I haven’t had a chance to read them so I’m just going to assume what he’s written is correct.
There’s really way too much to go into in a blog post, and I’d much rather people read the book.
The title really gets to the meat of his conclusions. Character plays a much larger part in children succeeding than IQ. So I’m not going to worry so much about when to start Baby Girl on flashcards and more time encouraging good character traits. Which is frankly going to be harder, I believe.
The best way, at least I would assume obviously I could be wrong so take what I say with a grain of salt, but I would think the best way to teach a child character is to lead by example. Then of course encourage hard word, curiosity, grit, and a ton of other traits. There are twenty-four mentioned in the book.
I’m really going to have to work on being better at a few things, especially overcoming setbacks. It’s so easy to just complain about things than to actually try and fix them.