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August 10, 2015

The Sh!t No One Tells You About Toddlers Book Review

Complimentary Product Was Received for Review Purposes



Since the day my twin boys were born 21 months ago, I had not had the urge to pick up a book to read.  When you have a young child, especially twins, time management is critical, and everything you do needs to have a purpose.  Free time is a luxury, and when you have it, you must spend it wisely.  In my life, free time is when the boys are napping, and after they go to sleep at night. It's not a lot of time when you think about it, and there are so many things that need to be done  (cleaning, laundry, food prep, assembling outfits for the next day, etc.), so up until now, leisure reading has been shelved.

When I recently received an email to review a book entitled "The Sh!t No One Tells You About Toddlers: A Guide to Surviving the Toddler Years" by Dawn Dias, how could I resist?  Based on the title alone, I knew I had to read this book, because I assumed it was going to be (1) funny, and (2) informative.  And my assumption was correct.

Both my husband and I had greatly underestimated how hard it is to raise toddlers.  We both were never around kids growing up, and never had any hands-on experiences with babies and toddlers.  Let me tell you, when the boys were born, it was like getting run over by a bullet train.  What the heck did we do to ourselves? What the heck is wrong with our kids? How can they be happy one second, and then take a 180 turn the next second?

That's where this book comes in handy.  Not only does it comfort me by informing me that my toddlers' alien behaviors are common and that I'm not alone, it provides a lot of comic relief, and it also provides a lot of great tips on how to address common challenges that many parents of toddlers face.

While reading this book, I was amazed at how similar my experiences are with other moms out there.  From eating out at restaurants to tantrums, the crazy things that my boys do are not too different from the rest of the toddlers out there.

Chapters include:

•    You Are Living With a Terrorist. Do Not Make Any Sudden Movements
•    Your TV Has Been Hijacked. By Things With Very High Pitched Voices
•    You Suck At This. It’s Not Just Your Imagination
•    Remember When You Were A Respected Adult? Now You Go To Mommy and Me Classes
•    Playdates Are the Modern Day Arranged Marriage. Same Age? You’ll Love Playing Together!
•    Potty Training is the Sh!ts. And It’s Everywhere
•    Everything Is Temporary. You Will Survive This
•    This Childhood Will Be Televised. Hello Camera Phones
•    Let’s Lean Back, Not In. Who Has the Energy for So Much Ambition?

The chapter that I found the most entertaining was Chapter 12: Toddlers Don't Eat.  The charts on the first page of the chapter should give you a good clue to what it's all about, and let me tell you, there's a whole lot of truth to this!

One of the biggest challenges of raising a toddler is getting them to eat, and this explains it all in a nutshell.

In addition to hilarious anecdotes, the author offers a lot of encouragement to parents who like myself, are trying to survive this trying stage in our sons' lives:

""...the easy life you remember and still long for is gone. Long gone. (The good news is your memory is so bad that you'll probably forget soon anyway.) The stress and exhaustion and frustration you feel every day? That's not a unique feeling. There is no family out there who sits around at night and thinks, 'Man, that was an easy day!'"

"If you are finding all of this to be really hard, that probably means you are doing it right. Isn't that wonderful?! Parenting, good parenting, is a lot of work. If it's not hard, then you are probably not very good at it."

I really wish this book was in existence before the boys were born, because it really would have prepared us all sh!ts and giggles that were yet to come.  I recommend it for anyone who is thinking about having kids, anyone who has a kid who is about to enter the toddler years, or anyone who is trying to survive the toddler years! It's easy reading, will tickle your funny bone, and will give you that much-needed reassurance that this too shall pass.

THE SH!T NO ONE TELLS YOU ABOUT TODDLERS: A Guide to Surviving the Toddler Years (Seal Press; September 2015; Paperback; $16.00)




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