Monday, October 5, 2015

Hello again world

Hello everyone! I'm still running; it's just that the blogging is on hold. Here's what happens: I'll have a week of great runs, then come down with a cold from lack of sleep, or the husband will be away for work, or I'll have a science writers' group meeting that night, or something. You know. Two steps forward, one step back. Last week, work was appalling, sleep was worse, and the weather -- well, until Friday we were expecting to be battered by a hurricane. But I got a new haircut. New haircut!! I AM UNSTOPPABLE.

Anyway, here are some reviews of books we've (collectively) read recently:

Mem Fox, Steve Jenkins - Hello Baby!
This is one of those lovely books for a very small baby, with gorgeous cut-paper illustrations, a subtle rhyme, and the perfect opportunity to sneak up and tickle the baby at the end. I'm beginning to appreciate a good illustrator even more.

Deborah Guarino, Steven Kellogg - Is Your Mama a Llama? 
Rhymes have always lodged in my head; as a kid, I thought "I had a Hippopotamus" was completely uproarious. After reading this one a few times, I know it by heart. " 'Is your mama a llama?' I asked my friend Dave. 'No, she is not,' is the answer Dave gave..." The mark of an excellent baby book is its Earworm Quotient.

My very first book of Tractors and trucks 
This was a book so terrible, the author and illustrator aren't even credited. Sure, my little urban baby might want to recognise a garbage truck, a tow truck, or a big rig on the highway. But you don't get to put 'giant tractor', 'tractor' and 'small tractor' on different pages like they're different vehicles. And can we say product placement? You might as well put a footnote inside the cover: "This book sponsored by John Deere". No. Just no.

David Adam - The Man Who Couldn't Stop 
OCD: it's not just about repeated handwashing, or having a counting compulsion. David Adam, an acclaimed science journalist who just happens to have OCD, uses his condition as a way to explore the various facets of the disease. I highly recommend this one.

Also, one thing about parenthood: it only expands the list of social causes and concerns that are on my radar. Gender equality: boys can wear pink too. Saying no to the parenting wars. Making sure all children start out on a level playing field. Child literacy. Not that these weren't important to me before - it's just that they're WAY more personal now.

Okay, fine, here is another photo. Om nom nom pacifier.


  1. I'm guessing the David Adam book wasn't a baby one. Although I shouldn't judge if you want to expose your son to bigger issues. Might make for a more socially aware sprog.

  2. Oh the inequality, it bugs me so much. Yesterday I got to visit the most wonderful preschool in an affluent area. Stunning. Those kids are so lucky to go there. But they're also stinking rich and don't NEED those opportunities like the kids I visited in a poorer area a few months ago. THEY need the woodwork and the climbing wall and the copious library of books. I think I'm becoming more of a socialist as I get older! Also your boy is adorable.

  3. MORE BABY PHOTOS. Cute haircut too! :)