“Parent Hacks”: A Parenting Book I’m Not Going to Burn (Brain Explosion)

Parent Hacks by Asha Dornfest. MomsicleBlog

We need to support each other more as women. I’m retraining my brain to have a build-up rather than a teardown response when I hear about women doing amazing things. It’s hard to break habits. Like rubber bands, you stretch them and change their shape but they just go back.

This is a weird way to start a book review. But I love “Parent Hacks” author Asha Dornfest because she is unguarded and generous with her history and her support of other writers, women, and parents.

She listens deeply. And because of it she gives and receives goodness deeply.

Here we are having coffee and chocolate back in October with my friend Lauren of On Fecund Thought. (L to R: Lauren, Asha, me, Fairy Pig)

IMG_2829 (1)

Asha also doesn’t mind if you photobomb her book talk. (L to R: @beetothesea, chicken book, me, Asha. Photocredit: @saramabo)

Photobomb w Beetothesea and Asha Dornfest. Momsicleblog.

Asha started Parent Hacks back in 2005, when her now-middle-school daughter and high-school son were small. Her idea was that as parents we are all guessing at this monumental job, and that we all have instances of genius. Why not share them? Why not help others to simplify a problem that might be the nail in their tire? No need to be “expert” or judgmental.

You might remember that parenting books with few exceptions go in my burn pile. They are frenemies at best. Pretending to build you up, and then tearing you down with their sly put-downs.

We’re not telling you you’re a bad parent, the parenting books whisper. We’re just laying out what research and experience say, and letting you make the choice. If you’re a bad parent, that’s on you.

Not “Parent Hacks.” Asha’s writing style constantly assumes the best in you. She’s cheeky and fun. She talks as an equal, not an illuminati. Her book should sit closer to “Hyperbole-and-a-Half” than “1-2-3 Magic” on the bookstore shelves.

“Parent Hacks” isn’t going to whisper sweet insults to you at a trunk show. Nope. It’s selling the extra baby gear on Craigslist to pay for summer babysitting and a case of Pabst.

And I’ve used the tips.

I started storing breastmilk in an ice cube tray so it’s easy to pop out and put in a plastic bag, and I’m using those silicone muffin tins for everything except for baking muffins (opening bottles, bath toys, etc.)

“Parent Hacks” has made me feel like maybe it was worth it to have another baby—because finally there’s a book that talks to me like I know something. Not to mention that you don’t have to wait to introduce peanuts anymore. If it weren’t for Zika virus, this would really be a sweet time to get knocked up, friends. Spoiler alert, if I know you and you’re procreating, I’ll be sending you a copy of Asha’s book. I’m sorry if you were hoping for “1-2-3 Magic.”

***

Asha asked for my address and sent me a free copy of “Parent Hacks.” But she didn’t make me write about it and she especially didn’t make me say nice things. It takes a good book and genuine friendship to make me do that. Even then I often don’t get around to writing things down these days. So this whole thing is on me.

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10 responses to ““Parent Hacks”: A Parenting Book I’m Not Going to Burn (Brain Explosion)

  1. That was a fun night. 😊

    Asha has been a favorite of mine for a long time – I love the way she talks about her kids, admits to the struggle and created a positive, solution based, landing spot on the interwebz.

    And you, who you know you’re a favorite of mine… I won’t go on and on. 😊

  2. Adriane Blackman

    Sounds like a great book and one to add to the new parent gift basket (aka the tiny new Blackman coming soon!). Judgement has no place in my world. Life is too short, messy and random to point fingers! I remember seeing Asha on a mom blog way back when my boys were first born and I was living in a constant haze of exhaustion. I found her comments funny, uplifting and honest. I am happy to see she has a book. Thank you sharing, Evelyn. I really appreciate your honesty. The fact that you wrap your observations on beautiful prose is a nice bonus!

    • Well now we’ll be in a race to see who can get it to the East Coast first! 😉 But mostly, I’m so glad you’ll such a loyal reader, Adriane.

  3. Looks like I’ve gotta head to the shops to look for this book! I’ve got 4 children but it’s always good to retrain or learn new things!

  4. Paintwriterblue

    I love this post, Im a first time mom and I feel like everyone and every article I read has something to say about how wrong my decisions with my child are. I would love to read this 🙂

  5. This promises to be a fun read!

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