29 October 2011

Book Review: Fathermucker

I received this book from LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program.

Fathermucker is an interesting, sarcastic, humorous, and slightly depressing look at both modern fatherhood and modern parenting. Josh, our hero, is a stay-at-home Dad, or as he calls it a SAHD and the book tells the story of one tumultuous day in his life with two young children.

The story starts a little unevenly, but by halfway through it picks up steam and the tale that unfolds is one I think both modern mothers and fathers can relate to. I enjoyed the Dad's point of view as much as I enjoyed seeing a man struggle with raising young kids while keeping a marriage intact just as many women I know, myself included have.

Overall this is a thoughtful and enjoyable book that I think any parent can appreciate.

20 October 2011

Loafer Loveliness

I guess I should save this for Tuesday, but who can wait? 

Back in July I blogged about the gorgeous penny loafers from Tory Burch.  But in all honesty, they were a bit out of my price range so I never got them ... until today when they were on SALE!  I felt I had to share such good news. 

I am happy to report that these beautiful red loafers are on their way to me as I type.  Joy!

19 October 2011

Check out Heather!

So exciting!  My friend Heather is in a TV commercial for Kettle Chips:

How awesome is that!!

16 October 2011

12 Years Ago Today...

...I married the love of my life.

Lucky me.  Yes, of course, Rob is lucky to have me, but it really goes both ways.  I'm not sure I really understood feeling loved until Rob and I got together.  I can't imagine having faced parenthood and so many things without him by my side.

Happy Anniversary my love.

12 October 2011

Halloween Costumes Update

So we went to the party store to look at costumes.  (I always feel guilty just buying costumes since I, of all people, former costume designer, should really make her costumes, but I can't do everything.)  The costume we went looking for was that of Mixed Martial Arts fighter.  I didn't have much hope, but I did think we could find a boxer's costume or some accessories that we could use.  The closest thing available was this:

But I think this might be a little too, um, sexy for a 9 year-old.  

There were a lot of other great costume ideas at the party store.  I made a ton of suggestions.  All of them were shot down.  Including this Athena costume which I thought we could easily turn into an Artemis costume:

But Zoe wanted no part of it.  She's convinced no one will know who she is supposed to be if she wears it and I think she despises the idea of wearing a dress.  Sigh.

Somehow Zoe was ultimately taken in by a set of bumble bee wings and so that is her costume, bumble bee.  It is kind of disappointing in a way that doesn't make sense.  I mean, it is her costume so she should be happy with it and that should be enough for me, right?  Yeah, right.

I'm still thinking of ordering the Athena costume, just in case she changes her mind.  Sigh.

03 October 2011

I Don't Know How She Does It

A couple of weeks ago I went to see the movie I Don’t Know How She Does It, the movie based on the book of the same name by Allison Pearson. It was cute, somewhat trite, yet entirely perfect for a girls’ night out. Despite it’s forgetability, something about it stuck with me, some voice in my head said something wasn’t quite right. I listened to the audiobook of this title when it first came out in the U.S. sometime in 2003 and I haven’t carried the best impression of the book with me. If you had asked I would have said it was just an OK book, but I couldn’t tell you why exactly. After seeing the movie, I was pretty sure the moviemakers had either missed something or not quite gotten the story right. No surprise in that happening in a movie adaptation, but I couldn’t remember the book well enough to recall the problem.

Luckily Audible saves your purchased library for all time so I was able to download the book and give it another listen and alas I was able to discover what was missing. In the book (SPOILER ALERT) Momo, Kate’s (the protagonist) protégé, is subjected to sexual harassment in a particular nasty way. The slimy Chris Bunce (played right on target by Seth Meyers in the movie) puts her head on pictures of naked women performing lewd acts. This spurs Kate into action setting up the evil Bunce to get fired and then resigning herself (this does not occur at all in the movie and Kate does not resign). Second, her husband actually leaves her, instead of just implying that he might.

Lastly, and most important, the overarching message of the book seems to be that working too hard and succeeding is not a good thing for a woman – or at least not for her family. Kate and all the other likeable women characters eventually end up either as stay-at-home Moms or working at much less demanding (high-paying) careers. Kate, smart, powerful, highly paid woman, gives up her job so her husband doesn’t leave her and so her kids don’t hate her. This is what brings happiness to husbands and children.

The movie, on the other hands, ends on a note that says women can do it all (except an affair, of course, even if it is Pierce Brosnan), it is just a careful balancing act. I guess I subscribe more with that version of reality for obvious reasons.

In reality I suppose both conclusions are true, depending on who you ask and when. In this current economic climate, I don’t think a story about a woman giving up a high-paying job to spend more time at home would go over well since most don’t even have an option. And while I know for a fact that most stay-at-home moms actually work much harder than I do, I don’t think that staying at home necessarily makes a better mother as the book seems to imply. That’s my gamble, anyway.

At least now I know why my recollection of the book was iffy and I have a new appreciation for the movie rendition.

The one good thing that the book and movie share is how annoying that statement really is, "I don't know how you do it."  I do know.  It's not magic, it's not really anything special.  It's just living.