The Parents’ Phrase Book by Whit Honea is exceptional in many ways.
Parenting books tend to either talk down to you as if the author can’t believe society allowed you to reproduce or take every thing so deadly serious you start to wonder why society allowed you to reproduce. This book does neither.
The Parents’ Phrase Book speaks warmly, easily and with great humor and understanding, respectfully treating parenthood and childhood as the wondrous yet challenging times they are. Whit Honea, who has more writing credits for online parenting sites than Spock (the doctor and the Vulcan – you can look it up), makes clear that while the answers are never simple they tend to reside within us if only we listen, think and act with care and love.
Cleverly designed as one of those crash-course, speak another language guides, The Parents’ Phrase Bookaims to help you understand and respond to your child’s many questions and declarations in thoughtful and sometimes thought-provoking ways whether the subject is small (tattle telling) or great (death). The format makes the book’s lessons, peppered with timeless pop-culture tidbits and references, easy to digest and refer to as needed making The Parents’ Phrase Book a useful resource from toddlerhood through tweendom.
Honea’s advice tends to be from the common-sense, lead-by-example school, which we moms and dads too often abandon for the Free-Range / Attachment / Sasquatch Parenting fade of the month. What makes his ideas truly standout, though, is Honea’s writing with its smart upending of clichés, and his obvious and genuine love of enjoying childhood though being a father. This is most evident in the occasional anecdote used to illustrate a point, such as the inclusion of the brotherly bonding tale “When Stuffed Animals Die,” a short but powerful piece that has justifiably been reprinted multiple times online before appearing in his book.
So buy The Parents’ Phrase Book now. Your kids are growing quickly and, as Honea wisely concludes, “Make the most of the time you have. … No pressure at all.”
Disclosure: Whit Honea is a member of our L.A.Dads Group, and I have worked with him on other websites and drank with him under other tables. Yet, the cheap bastard never even sent me a review copy. WTF, Whit? I had to spend my own money on this book and I … I still am compelled to heartily recommend it. Curse you, Whit Honea and Perry the Platypus, too!