Tag Archives: Parent Hacks

“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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Tips for Long-Haul Air Travel with Young Kids Featured on Parent Hacks

Would you rather spend 24 hours on three flights with your young kids while you try not to throw up again, or…

  • replace your right hand with a monkey?
  • shower with Red Bull as the water and molasses as the soap for a week?
  • open a consignment store for slightly used feminine products?

Luckily the monkey types well, the molasses is keeping my left-hand stuck to the computer, and the consignment store doesn’t open until 11 p.m.: I can still blog!

I would choose anything over a full day’s worth of being cramped in a flying machine with young children, but sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do to get where you want to go. My husband and I were very, very grateful we sucked it up and took off for India over New Year’s 2014–2015. …and we will do it again!

It has been a pleasure to share my 10 tips for long-haul travel with young kids with Asha Dornfest over at the incredibly useful and well-written site Parent Hacks

Click over to see the full list, including how to be the boss of potty accidents and throw-up in the air, what kinds of melatonin worked for our family, and when and where to septuple check your seat assignments.

India 2015. MomsicleBlog

Want more travel tips?

Here’s a great list of guest posts and additional writing on travel with young kids here at Momsicle.

And here’s a great article on Science of Mom with more tips about international travel with kids.

Bon voyage!