I was sent a copy of Simple Happy Parenting by Denaye Barahona, and I also have three copies to give away to lucky readers!
The secret of less for calmer parents and happier kidsSimple Happy Parenting — Denaye Barahona Ph.D.
This book is full of advice for parenting in a way that will result in a calm you, and happy children. Sounds good, right? Something I can get on board with.
Simple parenting is a method by which we will have more time, less overwhelm, and be healthier. There are a few anecdotes in the book where Denaye Barahona explains how her family arrived at the simple approach.
The first part of the book describes how to get your home and all the stuff inside clearer and more simple!
“By clearing out your home space, you are not just undertaking a spring cleaning, but embracing a new, lighter way of life”
The second step on the path to a simpler, happier life is to apply a less is more approach to parenting to watch our kids grow and flourish.
There are practical tips for clearing out your home, and for planning your family home if you don’t have kids yet (you don’t need all that stuff they tell you that you’ll need). Denaye advocates sustainable curated pieces that everyone loves, and not child-focused brightly coloured things. She puts forward the view that children don’t need 40 toys and says they’re more likely to treasure and care for 4. I’m not sure how that would go down in this house. While I’m certain we’ve got far too much stuff in our little flat, the boys do play with the majority of their toys fairly regularly. And would you say LEGO is one toy or 100,000?!
There are also tips for simplifying meal times so that everyone eats well: parents choose the food that is to be served and children choose how much to eat and whether or not they will eat it. I agree wholeheartedly with one of the tips: subscribe to a meal planning service. I have used The Delicious Nutritionist who send a list of recipes each week with a shopping list written out. I thoroughly recommend it as it really gives me a lot of time for other things, and not mindlessly wandering the supermarket or worrying during the commute home if we’ve got something in to have for dinner.
The second part of the book goes into detail about how to parent in a simpler way: less screen time, more time outside, and more time together. It’s more effort than watching TV, but you get out of it what you put in.
There’s also the interesting idea of “batch worrying”. Much like batch cooking, this is a period of time you put aside for one particular activity – worrying. So if you catch yourself beginning to worry about something during the week, you catch the thought and say, “ah, not now! I’ll save that for worry time on Sunday at 3 pm”. And you put an alarm or another reminder so that you recognise the time to worry each week. When it actually comes around to “worry time”, most often you’ll wonder what it was you were going to worry about as the moment has passed and it wasn’t worth wasting time on.
I think this is a book that you can dip in and out of. It’s written in a very easy style and the helpful tips are broken up with lots of beautiful photos taken by Amy Drucker.
The language in the book is a little like an Instagram caption, with words such as “full cup”, “intentional life” and “gratitude”. I guess Denaye is living her best life!
If you would like to win a copy of the book Simple Happy Parenting by Denaye Barahona, please use the widget below. Giveaway ends on 11th August 2019 at 23:45.