Wednesday, March 23, 2011


You Can Adopt: An Adoptive Families Guide by Susan Caughman and Isolde Motley.

I paid full price for this book, new from Barnes and Noble. I love the feel of getting to be the first person to open a book. To be the first to crease the spine. It is a rare treat to read a NEW book when one’s DH works at a used book store. It must be savored. So I have taken a really (embarrassingly) long time finishing this book. That is my excuse and I am sticking with it. It was worth the money.

This is a good getting-started-in-the-adoption-process book. This book breaks down the process step by step – Can I do this? Domestic vs. international? Where to start? What do I do with the child once I get him/her? What could go wrong? It is broken up into nice short sections. Question then answer. And check lists, oh how I love lists. Interspersed with that is pictures of ADORABLE babies and stories about real adoptions. The stories really ground the book, which can be a bit intimidating, in a sense that this will all work out in the end. I would recommend it.

Equally Shared Parenting, by Marc and Amy Vachon

On the other hand, having a DH who works at a used book store means that I can get LOTS of books really cheap. (Not that that fact has stopped either of us from buying brand new, full price children’s books.) It is a luxury to pick up a book just because you like the cover art with only pennies committed to the purchase price. That is the case with Equally Share Parenting. I honestly picked it up because it has shoes on it. Three pairs of converse – two adult sized and one child sized pair of converse. I might like shoes nearly as much as books.

Equally Share Parenting sets out a paradigm for managing one’s family that really is equal between both partners, not just a division of roles. One partner is not an apprentice housekeeper or second-string wage earner. Both parents are expected to take full ownership of all household, breadwinning and child rearing tasks. Both parents are expected to be equally competent at all tasks. This frees both parents to enjoy time with their family.

Sounds like having your cake and eating it too. The trick is prioritizing the family over an individual career or certain wage level. Both partners are encouraged to be “artisan” workers so they can bargain for fewer hours or flexible work schedules rather than more money and increasing responsibility. Corporate America beware: you might not like workers who use their bargaining chips for less work time rather than more money. Equally Share Parenting teaches balanced living with a focus on living within one’s means. Honestly, who can argue with that? Who really needs a wipe warmer?

The tag line is “Rewriting the Rules for a New Generation of Parents.” I’m not sure it is a new idea, but the Vachons articulated it well. I would recommend it.


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