The best pre-natal advice I ever got was, "Pick one book, any book, and only one book." They all get you there, but they take different, and often mutually exclusive paths. I cheated -- I read several -- and of the lot, the best was My Mother Wears Combat Boots: A Parenting Guide for the Rest of Us by Jessica Mills (horn player in several punk bands such as Less Than Jake, and columnist for MAXIMUMROCKNROLL). Mills, a touring punk musician, silversmith, anarchist and pacifist, wrote the book based on her experiences as a punk parent, trying to raise a baby without "gender-coding," punishment, or authoritarianism, in a world that is hardly cooperative to such goals.
Mills is a great writer -- of all the baby-books I've read, only COMBAT BOOTS deserves the adjective "compelling" -- and while I don't agree with 100 percent (or even 85 percent!) of her parenting ideas, I found them provocative, well-informed, and, above all, humane. Mills has high ideals, but she freely acknowledges that her parenting often falls short of her objectives -- her kid ends up watching Disney cartoons, pitching tantrums, and wanting to wear frilly pink dresses. It's this human fallibility that really makes the book -- Mills's insistence that we're all human and parents can, will and should make mistakes. Mills's book is as much about how to cope with your own challenges as it is about coping with your kids'.
I was especially taken by Mills's descriptions of her boyfriend's struggles to co-parent without either smothering or allowing the easy gendered roles to take over. There's a great guest-written chapter about punk-fathering, and a really heartwarming interview with the bright-as-anything 15-years-old daughter of a couple of punk parents who pioneered taking kids to shows, protests, and on tour.
COMBAT BOOTS goes from prenatal to four, and it's just the thing for your different friends who are already being buried under heaps of What to Expect When You're Expecting or worse, Nestle- or P&G-published "parenting magazines" that are just thinly disguised pitches to get you to buy a ton of crap you and your kid don't need.
My Mother Wears Combat Boots: A Parenting Guide for the Rest of Us
Jessica Leigh Clark-Bojin (aka @ThePieous) writes, “It is National Pie Day in America tomorrow (not to be confused with “International Pi Day” – the cooler big cousin of pie holidays on March 14th…) In honour of this occasion I’ve posted a new tutorial video that is very attainable for any novice pie-geeks out there thinking […]
Doubtless you’ve laughed at the ideological war between the Judean People’s Front and the People’s Front of Judea. I laughed along with you: having grown up in politics, I know firsthand about the enmities that fester between groups that should be allies — groups whose differences can only be parsed after months of study, but who are seemingly more at odds with one another than their obvious political opponents on the “other side” of the debate.
Brian made these California Resistance mugs, sporting Jerry Brown’s promise to “launch our own damned satellite” — proceeds to Planned Parenthood.
Looking to upgrade your weekend? Here are three randomly awesome products on my mind this week.#3 FRESHeBUDS Pro Magnetic Bluetooth EarbudsAs more and more phones and gadgets switch to Bluetooth-only compatibility, you’ll need to get Bluetooth headphones like the rest of us. I’ve been super impressed with these affordable magnetic headphones. Pull the magnetic earbuds apart to auto-connect […]
Traditional folding wallets are designed for paper bills—but these days, carrying cash is rarely a necessity. More often than not, I don’t carry cash at all. This Bogui Clik Wallet is the best answer I’ve found for avoiding the hassle of those tight-fitting credit card pockets.This attractive, minimalist wallet features a protective lip, so my cards don’t […]
Using my iPhone while it’s charging is always a hassle. With tucked-away outlets and the meager length of included lightning cables, comfortable scrolling while plugged in is annoying. These 10-Ft MFi-Certified Lightning Cables are super convenient and probably the best iPhone accessory purchase I’ve made.At over three times the length of normal cables, these reach anywhere you […]