WWW Wednesdays – October 31, 2012

WWW Wednesdays

This update is one day late again, but I had a good excuse yesterday, since I spent some time writing my Halloween story. And now, let me tell you about some stories I read this past week.

My bookshelf

The cow in the parking lot by Leonard Scheff– What I’m currently reading
The Cow in the Parking Lot: A Zen Approach to Overcoming Anger by Leonard Scheff & Susan Edmiston. I’ll explain why I’m reading this book when I’m done with it.– What I recently finished reading
 I finished two books this past week, yeah!
1) The Conflict : How Modern Motherhood Undermines The Status Of Women by Elisabeth Badinter. Here’s my rant!What bugs me the most about this book is how skewed the research data is to prove Badinter’s points. As an opponent of breastfeeding, describing mothers as enslaved to their baby, she manages to use the most extreme and controversial quotes. It’s as if she’s trying to show how nuts some women are when it comes to breastfeeding. I’ve always seen it as a personal choice, one I hope many new mothers can make. I cringed when Badinter mentions that mothers can experience sexual pleasure from breastfeeding and in turn not want relations with their partner. I bet she never breastfed a day in her life, even with five children!She goes on describing all the sacrifices women make the day they become pregnant. They have to stop smoking, drinking, giving up on who they are. Wow, if a woman thinks of motherhood this way, she should abstain from having children for sure! Later she describes how depressed women can become by staying at home and taking care of their infant. She quotes someone explaining this is “like spending all day in the exclusive company of an incontinent mental defective.” Wow. This is the most messed-up, obnoxious, skewed quote I’ve ever seen on this subject. And I couldn’t find one super positive quote on motherhood to counteract this one.

I guess what bugs me the most is to read how some women still try to be “equal” to men, especially at work. Of course, we should have equal pay, but I have worked with enough men to know there’s no way I want to be like them and have what they have. They only got where they are by putting their career first and their personal life second. I think most women who become mothers realize family always comes first, work comes second. Your family will always be there for you, but work will always see you as a dispensable commodity. Unfortunately our society hasn’t adapted well to the needs and wants of mothers: flexible work hours, work share, more days off.

This book is offending and obnoxious in many ways, but it does make you think of how we could make our society function better, to everyone’s benefit.

2) Make the Bread, Buy the Butter by Jennifer Reese. I enjoyed reading this book and mostly walked away with ideas of what items I should make at home rather than buy. At least I’ll try the recipes once and see if it’s worth the hassle, from a health and financial point of view. On my list are bread (I’ve made bread before and really should make it more often), bagels, pitas, tortillas, pancakes and waffles, and my favorite, Nutella!

– What I think I’ll read next
I have several books waiting for me on my bookshelf but I’m not sure which one I’ll start with yet. It will all depend what I’m in the mood for.

My kids’ bookshelf

Abiyoyo by Peter SeegerWhat they’re currently reading
We’ve been reading two great books from Peter Seeger that my six-year old asked for after reading the first one at school:
Abiyoyo. Banished from the town for making mischief with magic, a little boy and his father find a way to make the frightful giant Abiyoyo disappear.
Abiyoyo Returns. Years after the magician father made him disappear, Abiyoyo is called back to save the town from flooding. But there are risks that come with bringing a hungry giant back to life.

Super-Completely And Totally The Messiest by Judith Viorst

– What they recently finished reading
Mouse Tales by Arnold Lobel. When the seven little mice are tucked in bed, Papa Mouse tells seven stories, one mouse tale for each mouse. Very cute story.
Super-Completely And Totally The Messiest by Judith Viorst. Olivia, a very neat and organized girl, despairs because her  little sister Sophia is super-completely and totally the messiest person, no matter what she does. But underneath the messy part, Sophie has a lot of good things to offer, and she really tries. My kids loved this story. They couldn’t believe how messy Sophie could be!

– What I think they’ll read next I don’t know but I’m sure it will be good stuff. What about you? Any books you or your kids are reading you’d like to share?

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16 responses to “WWW Wednesdays – October 31, 2012

  1. Eeks! The book talking about Breastfeeding sounds CRAZY! And I’m not even a Mom!

  2. Wow! You always amaze me at how fast you read. I am slowly slogging along with 2 books that aren’t bad, but aren’t riveting either. One is my book group book–something to do with child psychology–Dibbs. The other I’m halfway done with, and can’t remember the title–is that bad? It’s slow and could be much better. But I just saw today that the library has a book for me that’s been on hold…so maybe some excitement awaits me.

  3. Yep. That pretty much sums that book up. I, too, thought her findings and cited research were extremely biased. She used only the most militant examples of breastfeeding mothers. There are so many wonderful things to say about breast milk, that I won’t even get started. But I hate to think of the increased amounts of infections, asthma, obesity, etc. that would occur if no one breastfed anymore. Of course formula is fine for those who choose (I was formula fed–I think I turned out okay), but there is no denying the healthful qualities of breast milk. Not to mention it is much cheaper and there’s no need to ‘get it ready.’ And as for the sexual comparison? I was pretty sure she lost her marbles with that one. One of my favorite quotes I used to tell expectant parents was from Irena Chalmers: “There are three reasons for breast-feeding: the milk is always at the right temperature; it comes in attractive containers; and the cat can’t get it.” :)

    • Oh, I love the cat argument!

      I just don’t like books that try to make a point by slamming the other side, especially with such extreme views. And especially for something like breastfeeding, which is the way nature intended. But I see her point about women fighting for equality and not getting it for some reason or another. I’m all for equal pay but I think there is not just one single cookie cutter mold men and women should all fit.

  4. That motherhood book sounds interestingly awful!

  5. Catherine Johnson

    I’m going to check out two of these obviously not the breastfeeding one, yikes! By the way I got a great picture of a beaver made from toothpaste accidentally. I’ll have to put it on my blog on Monday and show you :)

  6. I’ll be avoiding the Badinter book. Thanks for the warning! It always annoys me how militant people can be about their choices. I thought feminism was supposed to be about giving us choices, not insisting that we take their choices.

    I had a career and I was going places. I chose to give it up to have children (and I breastfed without any of her nonsense). I have never once regretted my decision.

    The key thing is that I, me, I chose. I know you can’t have it all. I don’t want it all. I had what I wanted.

    Here’s another choice: I’m working hard now on my writing career. I don’t intend to someday be my grandchildren’s full time babysitter. :)

  7. I appreciated your full review of the Badinter book. I think it might be worth getting from the library. Sometimes out-there points of view get me so worked up they help me clarify my own feelings on a subject.

    I’m reading the original Winnie the Pooh with my boys and we’re all laughing away. I had forgotten how funny it is.

    • I think it’s worth reading to even understand how extremism and bias can really hurt any cause you try to support.

      We should try Winnie the Pooh on our end too. We’ve never read any of the stories. Thanks for the suggestion!

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