Thursday, May 22, 2008

Book Recommendations for Mommies-to-Be

Margaret and her hubby are expecting a baby later this year. In honor of this, there's an online baby shower to shower her with tips and advice. Here are my recommendations for reading.

When I was pregnant, I stocked up on books since I'm big into researching things. As a soon-to-be and new parent, you get lots of parenting advice from everyone you know, including the older generation (your mom, aunts, grandmas, etc). They have a lot of good tips, but they also grew up in a different time.

For the 'big picture' on recent science and ideas, I liked the following two books. The Science of Parenting relies on scientific studies to tell what actually happens in the brain and body of a baby/child. It's not a dull science jargon read at all, but argues for a nurturing approach to parenting. (Margaret, if you can't find this one or some of the other ones I mention at the library, I could probably lend you my books since we both live in Houston!) Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent is a cross-cultural look at baby care and child-rearing. A lot of wisdom/advice on baby care is based on your culture as opposed to biology. It's interesting to read other views on babies, and to think about what you might like to incorporate in your parenting.

I used the The Unofficial Guide to Having a Baby as a general reference about going through pregnancy, options about childbirth, etc. The Girlfriends' Guide to Pregnancy is a hoot and filled with from-the-hip advice about all the side effects of growing a human being! :-) For more specific baby and parenting advice, I liked a lot of Dr. William Sears' books. Also, definitely read The Happiest Baby on the Block - it has really good advice on soothing the baby and getting through those first ~3 months when babies cry a lot.

La Leche League's books about breastfeeding and/or So That's What They're For! are great for breastfeeding info.

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