Happiest of Mondays to you all! We had a nice weekend relaxing and spending time with family. Kai is becoming more and more fun by the day! He's so much more alert and smiles so big when he looks at Caleb and I. He's started cooing and sometimes has a little cackle when he smiles. I know we still have some time before he laughs but I can't help but get so excited when he makes noises when he's smiling. We can tell he wants to laugh so bad, but we're not quite there yet. Soon enough though, right!?
So I read a couple of great books last month that I want to share with you all! I've really been enjoying non-fiction books lately, especially parenting books. I find them to be fascinating because the ones I've been diving in to are heavily psychology based. If you didn't know this about me, I actually have a BS degree in Psychology! I'm big on cognitive development and behavioral patterns, which I've got to say, has really worked in my favor with becoming a mom! Anyways, on to the books I read...
Bringing Up Bebe -Pamela Druckerman
This parenting book is about an American mom's experience of raising her children in Paris, France. She decided to write this book because she was fascinated with how well behaved Parisian children always are. She did a lot of research on French parenting and how and why it works so well. The book follows along mostly with her first daughter growing up and how French parents incorporate their techniques based on the child's age.
This book isn't a straight forward parenting guide, it's written like a French parenting book actually. French parenting books aren't designed to tell you exactly what to do every step of the way. They give theories and ideas for French parents to put to the test and figure out how they work best for you children. One of the biggest things this book promotes though is treating your children as functioning people. Even babies can comprehend what you're saying to them, so they are owed to be talked to like a human being. It's suggested to steer clear of lots of baby talk and treat them with respect. French children know that adults are in charge but when they feel respected they are more willing to cooperate for you. I really like this point in the book and 100% agree. Just because Kai can't speak to me, doesn't mean he isn't trying his best to listen to what I have to say. I've been trying to calmly talk to him, and I've really noticed, especially when he's crying really hard, that after a few seconds he starts to calm down and listen. He might not understand what I'm saying but because I'm talking to him like a human and not a cute puppy, he tends to settle and listen better. The book also dives in to a lot about self soothing and how it's important to start on that technique as early as possible, allowing children to play and use their imagination on their own without parent intervention, and helping your babies sleep through the night, all of which I find extremely important. I also really enjoyed how it touched on mom guilt and how French mothers are not ashamed of taking time to care for themselves. We all struggle with that mom guilt of wanting to take care of ourselves but not take time away from our kids, so to be told that it's ok to take time out of your day for you is really nice to read.
The downside to this book though is it obviously really favors Parisian culture. Unfortunately, the US government doesn't subsidize state run daycares that every parent wants their children to attend like the Paris government does. As awesome as this sounds, it's just not how things work here in America. It also talks about the difference in interaction between parent and child of French parents versus American parents. You can try all you want to be like the French parents at the playground but in the end we live in the US, and the way parents interact with their kids here is just how they interact. You can try to change how you do it, but you can't change everyone else.
I definitely recommend this book to all moms but with the point of keeping in mind that it doesn't all work here in the US. The author lives in Paris, we don't.
You can buy Bringing Up Bébé on Amazon.
The Little Book of Hygge -Meik Wiking
The Little Book of Hygge is a book all about the hygge way of life in Denmark. Denmark is repeatedly ranked as having the happiest people in the world, so they must be doing something right! Hygge is definitely the answer to why they are so happy. The author works for the Happiness Institute in Copenhagen and touches on all the different aspects of hygge. There isn't a clear cut translation for what hygge is in English, but the closet you can get is "a cozy lifestyle." The book goes in to the best way to achieve hygge with the importance of candles, togetherness, sweets & good food, and more. Each aspect is broken down in different chapters to thoroughly explain the importance of them to having hygge.
I absolutely loved this book. It is one of my favorite books ever. It made me so happy every morning to read it while sipping my coffee, having Kai in his baby wrap on me, and having some candles going with our fireplace lit. I looked forward to this ritual every morning and just by having this ritual made me feel like I was achieving hygge myself. I really liked how there are some recipes in the book for great food to make with friends and family that bring happiness as well as fun ideas of things to do to really enjoy that closeness with the important people in your life. They are all so simple, too. Hygge isn't about being extravagant and spending a lot of money. If anything, it's about being simple and enjoying what you have. If you are in need of a pick me up, I can't recommend this book enough. Like I said before, just reading it made me feel happier. I try to implement hygge in to my life every day now and I've got to say, I can feel the happiness inside me, which I hope to pass on to all those around me.
You can buy The Little Book of Hygge on Amazon.
I just started reading Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte! Have any of you read this classic? I can't wait to get further in to it. What are you all currently reading? Leave me a comment below and let me know!
I’m Diana; curator & author of Tiny Dapper Fox. Here you’ll find posts on motherhood, home life, travel, & fashion/beauty as well as City Guides for places all around the world. Make yourself cozy and let’s be friends!
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