Four Parenting Favorites for 
Mother’s Day

The day a parent welcomes a child into the world, their life is forever changed. Children bring us tremendous moments of joy, laughter and pride. Our precious little ones show us just how deeply we are able to love and how swiftly we are able to forgive.

However, parenthood can also be met with moments of great stress. There are times when we wonder if our children will ever fall asleep, if they will ever listen and if they will ever make it through an entire day without whining.

Children don’t come with an instruction manual to guide us to handle the various challenges that arise through each stage of their lives. Luckily, some fantastic authors have written books packed full of helpful parenting advice. Over the years, I have leaned heavily on these four books to help navigate through the various stages of parenthood.

On Becoming Baby Wise: Giving Your Infant the Gift of Nighttime Sleep

Authors: Gary Ezzo, M.A. and Robert Bucknam, M.D.

Best for: Expectant parents or anyone with a newborn under six months old (the younger the better)

There have been dozens of experts over the years touting their methods for getting a baby to sleep through the night. At the heart of Dr. Bucknam and Ezzo’s teachings is that a baby’s body and mind need a routine. With implementation of that schedule, your baby will get the sleep he needs and parents will get the rest they need too. On Becoming Baby Wise provides flexibility that many other infant sleep methods lack. The authors give parents the concepts and then provide examples of ways parents can vary that routine to fit their personal needs. Whenever I see a new mom who looks like she hasn’t slept in days, I loan her my copy of On Becoming Baby Wise.

Hands Free Mama: A Guide to Putting Down the Phone, Burning the To-Do List, and Letting Go of Perfection to Grasp What Really Matters!

Author: Rachel Macy Stafford

Best for: Parents with children under 18

Life’s daily distractions can often prevent us from being present and enjoying the special little moments in each day. This book reminds readers to disconnect from our electronics and to-do lists and reconnect with our children. Hands Free Mama is broken down into 36 short segments, each providing a new, small goal to focus on per week. The real-life stories and examples touch home and provide the reader with motivation to make a small change each week. Hands Free Mama is a great book for starting a book club or motherhood discussion group in your neighborhood.

If I Have to Tell You One More Time…: The Revolutionary Program That Gets Your Kids To Listen Without Nagging, Reminding, or Yelling

Author: Amy McCready

Best for: Parents with children ages 2-18

For parents that feel like their children never seem to hear them, this book offers a solution. McCready provides detailed support for the theory that all humans, including our children, need to feel connected and empowered. She helps readers identify their parenting style, then provides new strategies for dealing with power struggles that arise between parents and their children. The methods outlined in If I Have to Tell You One More Time do require focus and practice in order to be effective, but if this title resonates with you, it’s worth the time and effort.

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms: Simple Ways to Stress Less and Enjoy Your Family More

Author: Kristine Carlson

Best for: Parents with children of all ages

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff is a staple of inspirational messages. This parenting-focused edition is filled with the same type of encouraging stories we have come to expect from the Carlsons, but this time, geared specifically for moms. I love to flip open to a random page to see which 3-minute bit of inspiration I will receive for the day. With 100 stories, Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff for Moms provides a great variety of uplifting messages for mom to read daily.