Friday, June 24, 2011

Summer Fun

I haven't had much to say lately. We are enjoying a quiet second trimester, and I am a teacher on vacation. While I have been working on a number of projects, and I've already attended one professional development conference, my mind has basically been turned off for the last few weeks.

On the occasions when I have turned my grey matter back on, here are a few things I have noticed:

First, during all of our travels this summer, I've continuously been asking myself (and Chad too), what will this be like with babies? We can't stop thinking about it. We got upgraded on our flight to Florida yesterday, and I can report that flying first class with babies will be just fine, if that ever happens again. Thinking about the travel question jumpstarts our thinking about how long will it take us to get the kids ready, pack everything up, load up a car or a taxi, or head through security in the airport. How many days ahead of time will we have to leave before we get to our scheduled destination? If diaper bag A leaves town X headed east at 30 mph, and diaper bag B leaves country Y headed west at 80kmh, how many minutes does it take before the complexity of the whole operation makes us want to throw in the burp rag and head home?

Second, parenting--you know, the part that happens after these babies arrive--has been on my mind a lot lately. What kind of parents will we be? I know what kind of teacher I am, and I am sure my teacher sense will inform my parenting (and vice-versa). But so far, the parenting question has mostly been defined by how I don't want to parent. For example, I just downloaded The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother on my kindle. I've only read the first chapter, but I can already tell you that my style of parenting will not be Chinese.

I've got a few books that I'm starting to read right now about baby schedules, raising twins, and parenting, but I have to express my disappointment that almost all of the really comprehensive, in-depth, newborn books are written towards the female audience. Our neighborhood Borders had at least 20 newborn books, all various shades of pink, definitely written for the soon-to-be mom. Sitting next to these books were two what could generously be referred to as pamphlets obviously written for fathers. These books were around twenty pages in length and mostly filled with colorful illustrations about how not to break your baby. Yikes. I'll stop here and let you draw your own conclusions and social commentary and whatnot before this post turns into a serious, ranting diatribe about fathers' involvement in child raising. Suffice it--for now-- to say that I'm still looking for serious newborn, or parenting books written from a male perspective, or at the very least, a gender neutral point of view. Recommendations? Has Edward written one yet?

Meanwhile, we are in Florida visiting my brother and having a great time. We have decided that Florida in late June is still much much more preferable to monsoon season in Delhi. We are actually enjoying the hot climate.



  1. Hi Doug, we are expecting Twins as well in Nov, I think we are just days apart. Although I will agree that almost all the books are written towards the female audience. I am reading Attachment Parenting. I love the idea of following my baby and my instincts! I would recommend that one to balance the scheduling books out there. You can use a little from both side. Cheers!

  2. Aren't you kind to suggest I write a book. I have actually started one and have about 600 pages so far but time is a difficult thing to come by lately to edit it down to something of relevance. At this rate, our girls will be able to read it by the time I'm done!
    At any rate, I read a bunch of books before our kids were born. One I quite liked was 'I Sleep at Red Lights' about a new dad with triplets in NYC. I also highly recommend 'Baby 411' for a good daily reference once your babies arrive.

    The reality is that no book can do what your instinct will automatically do the day you receive your new parent title. Read as many as you'd like and hear as many words of advice as you can stomach...and once the blessed day comes, throw it all out the window and go with your gut.
    In the meantime, enjoy your easy breezy upgraded travel and try to find time to develop your biceps for lifting baby gear!!!