Happiest Toddler On The Block

I have read a ton of parenting books. Mainly because I never was around children very much until I had one. I never babysat. I never understood what makes them tick. They weren’t drawn to me.

I read most of these books while pregnant… good thing – since I never seem to find time for doing much of anything anymore – much less read books. I generally don’t subscribe to any philosophy in particular, but we take bits and pieces from each book that fit our family.

I will even admit that Declan was a Baby Wise baby, although some may gasp in horror at that. Personally, I have never seen what is so controversial about that book. I am a routine person, so why is it so weird that my child would be all about routines too? Granted, I skipped the religious parts – so maybe there is some horrible sacrificial ceremony I was supposed to do and missed out on.

So, lately I have been reading The Happiest Toddler on the Block by Harvey Karp. I say lately – as in it has taken me a year of reading it here and there to finish it. But don’t let my unhurried pace fool you. If there was a book out there that I nod along in agreement to almost every page, this is it. I like his philosophy about respecting a child’s opinions yet still having rules and structure. I find his comparison of baby growth with caveman evolution to be pretty darn interesting. (By the way, his 1st book, Happiest Baby on the Block escaped my attention for some reason, not sure why.)

And even though I think that the “Toddler-eze” thing is a little silly – damn if it doesn’t work. Every time I remember to do it earnestly and sincerely – Declan looks at me with a wide eyed expression that says, “You GET me, don’t you?”

Not to say I really know what the hell I am doing at any given moment.

And like I said above, children are so individual – every situation is a combination of millions of factors that will not fit in a pat answer from some book. It’s just nice to have some guide posts here and there.

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