Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Parenting Books

I'm tired of my old post, so I thought it was time to post something new. I know not very many look at this blog, but just in case someone wanders in, I'll have something new and hopefully useful to look at.

When it comes to parenting books, I haven't read that many and I try not to. Too often parenting books are counter-productive. Instead of giving you helpful ideas and motivating you to be better, they can tend to leave you overwhelmed and feeling like a crappy parent. I think parenting magazines are even worse, which is why I don't like getting those even when they throw me a free subscription just for having a baby.

However, I have read a few that I loved, and I'd like to share them with you.

For the expecting mother, or the mother with a brand new baby have I got the book for you! It is called The Happiest Baby On the Block by Dr. Harvey Karp. You will be able to calm you infant in seconds with the strategies he gives. I recommended this to a friend who recently became a new mom, and she loved it too and even recommended it to her friends. Not only is this book helpful, but it's a very interesting read.

For teaching your baby to sleep, which is oh so important, try reading Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child by Marc Weissbluth. I haven't actually read this one, but my sister did and she relayed to me the strategies he teaches. I followed them as best I could considering I didn't actually read the book, and they seemed to work and helped create a reliable sleep schedule with my baby. I have a friend who swears by this book. My sister did tell me that this book isn't as enjoyable to read as the Karp book. I plan on actually reading it the next time we have a baby come around.

If you are frustrated and don't know how to handle the behavior of your child, no matter the age, I would recommend Picking Your Battles: Winning Strategies for Raising Well-Behaved Kids by Bonnie Maslin, Ph.D. It's a longer book, but it's interesting reading. I like it because she talks a lot about child development and why kids act the way the do. It really helped me when I was really struggling with the behavior of my toddler, and I still refer to it now and then.

For parenting with love, you need to read Parenting With Love: Making a Difference in a Day by Glenn I. Latham. I loved this book, and here's why: it's very short; he doesn't talk down to you at all, so the language is very easy to read and understand (so many authors of this type of book like to show you how smart they are); the principles are simple but they work. Some of the chapters I didn't read because they were geared to older children with problems that arise with older kids, but everything else I loved. When I applied his teachings, I saw a difference.

My very favorite parenting book is by the same author as the one I just mentioned. It's called Christlike Parenting: Taking the Pain Out of Parenting. This is the most wonderful book. One thing I like about this book is he doesn't write it from the view of one specific religion. All Christians will be able to understand what he's trying to say. What he does is use teachings and examples of Christ to show how to parent the way Christ would. It will change you for the good. I guarantee it. One reason I like this book is because even though when I read it I feel a little chastened because of things I do wrong, my overall feeling is a great desire to be better and fill my home with love. You will love this book! Every parent needs this book.

Last but not least, we moms need a good pat on the back, and I have the perfect book for that. It is I Am a Mother by Jane Clayson Johnson. After you read this book you want to shout from the roof tops "I AM A MOTHER!"

I hope these are helpful to you. Don't feel like you have to read them. The last thing I want is to overwhelm you because heaven knows we moms feel overwhelmed enough already! But if you do decide to read one or two, I think you'll like them. If you have any that you've read that you'd like to share then please do. You know me- I'm always up for suggestions.

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