- File Size: 1885 KB
- Print Length: 226 pages
- Publisher: Convergent Books (June 9, 2020)
- Publication Date: June 9, 2020
- Sold by: Random House LLC
- Language: English
- ASIN: B07Y7JCVVC
- Text-to-Speech: Enabled
- Word Wise: Enabled
- Lending: Not Enabled
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,978 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
|Print List Price:||$26.00|
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Rage Against the Minivan: Learning to Parent Without Perfection Kindle Edition
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|Length: 226 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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“This book is imperfectly perfect. Or perfectly imperfect. I get those confused. Either way, you should totally read it.”—Jenny Lawson, author of Furiously Happy and Let’s Pretend This Never Happened
“This book is like no parenting book I’ve ever read—it’s hilarious, thoughtful, and chock-full of the very best advice about raising kids. Read it. Not only will you have better tools and ideas for your parenting journey, but you’ll also realize you’re not alone.”—Matthew Paul Turner, author of When God Made You and When I Pray for You
“Howerton has a unique ability to be simultaneously playful and wise, funny and deeply thoughtful. She writes like a familiar friend and an insightful guide in the same moment. That’s a rare gift, and it makes this book so special.”—Shauna Niequist, author of Present Over Perfect and Savor
“Howerton tells a much bigger story than motherhood—she tells a human story. As someone without kids, I wondered where I might find myself in these pages, but everywhere I looked, there I was. Her honest and hilarious examination of motherhood —about losing control, never arriving, and learning something new at every turn—is deeply relatable and a fresh reminder that you’re not the only one who doesn’t have it all together.”—Brit Barron, author of Worth It
“I'm a grandpa now, enjoying all the high-reward, low-cost payoffs for decades of front-line parenting. But I vowed never to forget those most demanding (and amazing) years of my life, those years of the minivan slimed with orange Cheetos grease and perfumed with soccer-sock sweat. Kristen Howerton has written the book I wish I could have read back then, the book I would wish on any young parent whose moods swing between elation and exhaustion, rage and pride, unspeakable love and a desperate desire for five minutes without a diaper to change or a whine to interrupt. Read this book, parents. You'll know how much you need it when you’re a few pages in.”—Brian D. McLaren, author of The Great Spiritual Migration
“Howerton, a marriage and family therapist, gives readers a refreshing take on parenting: Relax. Nobody is perfect. . . . Howerton’s tone is refreshingly authentic and upfront but not cheeky, sassy, or heavy-handed. . . . Candid and witty.”—Kirkus Reviews
“Howerton’s parenting manifesto is a laugh-out-loud funny read many moms may find themselves nodding along with. . . . [Her] sage humor will resonate with a variety of readers of all types. Whether ruining her daughter’s lunch by putting a yellow straw in a pink cup, discussing the travails and joys of adopting her son Kembe from Haiti, or poking fun at unrealistic ideals of parenting culture, Howerton is both hilarious and relatable.”—Library Journal
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Your kids were screaming in the grocery store and you wanted to put the tantruming child/ren in the cart and high tail it out of there, and they went “boneless” and floppy and you were sweating through your shirt, and that cute little old lady came up to you and said “Oh, I miss motherhood, isn’t it the best? Cherish every moment, it goes so fast"- and then she adds in a “but my kids never acted like that, I wouldn’t have tolerated it” ***It would have been much more helpful for her to have handed you this book, but she didn’t.
You might show up to a pinterest-perfect child’s birthday party that is serving a gluten free wheat grass birthday cake and there are homemade artisanal handwoven gift baskets for each child in a perfectly clean house, with no trace of a child even living there…and there you are with a stain on your vacation bible school t-shirt and one of your kids won’t eat the green cake and is yelling that he likes twinkees better and all the moms dressed in Gucci and Lululemon are giving you looks of horror. ***would have been more helpful for you to have stayed home and read this book, then sent it to wheat grass cake lady to read afterward. But you didn’t have this book yet... but you do now.
Kristen Howerton writes her own story here, her own motherhood journey from chasing motherhood and not getting there the way she planned to. To chasing perfection and never quite grasping it, but wiggling her way into a middle ground of more attainable peace. It is not a how to book, or check list of things you need to do to be a good parent, or yet another list of proverbs 31 qualities you fall short of. It is an invitation to weed out the extra, sift out the lies, and curate what is going to matter for you and your family. She writes also about adoption, infertility and miscarriage, race, divorce, and the topic of church speak. She will tell you stories that will make you laugh, make you nod your head in agreement, then bring you to tears, then have you shouting AMEN with your fist in the air…then probably crying again, and laughing again and crying while laughing. “Rage Against the Minivan” feels like an honest confession from a trusted friend, and you’ll gasp in relief and say me too… and wish you could hug her.
And you will likely call all your friends and tell them to read it, and start giving it out at baby showers, or maybe just toss it in the general direction of random parents of screaming toddlers in the supermarket and send them off with a Katniss salute.
This book is perfect for introverted moms who just need some time alone and might cry if the kids wake up early from their naps, but it is also a great read for anyone who needs to hear that it is OK to just be “good enough.”
I read this book faster than any other non-fiction book I have read, and I found myself saying, “YES!, “ laughing and crying all within a couple of chapters. I am looking forward to reading this again & then sharing it with all of my friends!
I’ve been a long-time follower of the author’s blog and was looking forward to reading more about her life and points of view (which are always clever, insightful, and usually snarky in the best way possible). I have to admit, I wanted more, but that was not her intention and what she provided was wonderful.
Here is the closing to the book, which addresses such sentiment:
“The specifics of the stories... are mine. The feelings behind the stories- hope and crushing disappointment; exhaustion and resentment; wonder and worry; gratitude and uncertainty- those are universal. I didn’t write this book to tell you about one woman’s life... I wrote it because .... the more we can tell our truths, especially the hard and uncomfortable ones, the less alone and broken we’ll feel. Perhaps there is less wrong with is, and more wrong with the expectations we put on ourselves. Perhaps we’re good enough, just as we are.”
There were a few stories that I may have read (years ago!) that I remembered but still laughed hysterically about. There were also new heartbreaks that I didn't know about that I appreciated learning more and having such empathy for. In parts a memoir, in parts some excellent parenting tips, but the rest was a beautiful love letter to her children. Highly recommend!
As women, we feel like we have to fulfill all of our “traditional roles” while still being a “modern woman” with a full time career. Realizing that it’s okay to ask for help and okay to just not do some things is imperative for our mental health. Kristen puts it like this, “[If] we are not careful, having the freedom to do anything can easily morph into the obligation to do everything.” *******
This book was a joy to read. It was funny, serious, thought provoking, and all around enjoyable.