Listen. I know there is so much parenting advice out there. And who really wants more? It’s overwhelming and can sometimes make you feel worse when you’re just trying to do your best. But there are a few books that I have read and I apply the principles from them daily in my life. They all really align with my parenting style, which is to treat my children like the humans that they are, full of emotions and feelings and excitement and learning and all the other parts of this human experience. These books have been extremely helpful in helping me learn about my children as individuals, their learning styles, the way they see the world, what motivates them, etc. You will find that a lot of these books are along a similar vein, treating our children like humans. Not adults, because they’re not. But giving them more credit than we might think. They are so smart and capable! And at SUCH a young age too. There is no one-size-fits-all parenting style that will work on all children, and these books can help you to put together the best one for you and your child. But disclaimer: I DO believe that although these books have been extremely helpful, they are just that – helpful. They are not parenting bibles. You have your intuition and will know how to best parent your child, these are just supplemental.
Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne
This is probably my number one favorite and the one I mostly reference and live by. The entire premise of the book is exactly as the title says: Simplicity. He elaborates on simplifying schedules, activities, toys, clothing, foods, etc. It’s been so helpful for me to remember that things don’t need to be complicated. In fact, everything is much easier when we simplify and pare down. I’m happier and my kids are happier when our schedules, our homes, and our minds are less cluttered.
No Bad Kids by Janet Lansbury
This is a super short read and SO helpful when it comes to discipline. We personally don’t do time outs or “punishments.” I have learned from this book (and also from her podcast and Instagram account which are both great), that it’s much more effective to teach our children and the last thing I want to do is shame them. They are humans who are learning how to be humans, and we are their stewards to help them do so. It’s really difficult to remember that in the moment when Quinley is hitting Callum or when Callum is screaming because I won’t let him watch Cars again. But this book has been so helpful in helping me deal with these circumstances in a healthy way that I can feel good about.
Oh Crap! Potty Training by Jamie Glowacki
To be completely transparent, I haven’t read any other potty training books and so far I’ve only potty trained Quinley. BUT I really liked this author’s approach, plus it worked really well for us. The author mentions and recommends Simplicity Parenting multiple times as well, so you can see why I might have appreciated her approach. She really emphasizes that this process won’t be the same for every child. The steps are the same, but each child will respond differently and will take as much or as little time as they need. BUT that children are more ready than we usually give them credit for! Once again, truly smart and capable little humans.
The Child Whisperer by Carol Tuttle
We were introduced to Carol Tuttle by some friends back in 2014. Her approach seemed a little woo woo at the time, but I’ve come a long way since then and I’ve also seen how incredibly accurate her framework is in my own life. It’s difficult to wrap up what she does and who she is in a little paragraph, but basically in short, her framework is 4 energy profiles, and in The Child Whisperer she helps you narrow down which energy type your child is and she then teaches you all about that type and how to best communicate with them and meet their needs. It’s been especially helpful for us in parenting Quinley. (She is a Type 3, which Carol Tuttle compares to a freight train, if that tells you anything. 😉 )
Moms On Call by Laura Hunter and Jennifer Walker
There are actually 3 of these books, one for up to 6 months, then 6-15 months, then toddlers and up. My friend recommended them when we first found out we were adopting Quin and it literally saved my life. I will say I don’t agree with everything they say, and often es their approach is harsh and a little more rigid than my parenting style, but when we had never had a baby before and didn’t know what we were doing, it was SO helpful. Specifically the schedules were life changing for us. We followed them to a T and both of our babies have been great sleepers. It was also helpful in regards to how much they should be eating, sleeping, etc. Like I said, not a bible, but a super great starting point.
When you don’t have time to read a book…
For starters, I do believe everyone, even moms, have time to read, but that’s not what this is about. If you’d rather not read at this point in your life, I have some other things to recommend! There are a few podcasts that are amazing and so helpful (really there are tons of parenting podcasts, but these are the only ones I listen to consistently.) Carol Tuttle (The Child Whisperer) and Janet Lansbury (No Bad Kids) both have really helpful podcasts. AND they are super short, easy listens. They really know their audience. 🙂
If you’re anything like me, you probably also spend a lot of in between moments on the gram, so here are my favorite parenting accounts. I love seeing their posts in my feed and especially love watching their stories. I get helpful and applicable tidbits that I can apply right away! Go follow, you won’t regret it.
Instagram Accounts for parenting:
What are your favorite parenting resources?? Books, podcasts, Ig accounts? I’m always up for learning more and hearing new perspectives!