reading; i've been reading a lot, actually. i don't know when, exactly, but i've been sneaking it in whenever i can. i've recently read red dragon by thomas harris (the first book in which you meet dr. hannibal lechter), bringing up bebe: one american mother discovers the wisdom of french parenting by pamela druckerman, and begun french women don't get fat by mireille guiliano (along with the french women don't get fat cookbook). what has struck me is that the french employ a much more common-sense approach to everything. they aren't always searching for new fads and philosophies. they seem to rely on their own instincts, rather than some quack on tv or fad that has worked for a celebrity. some of the tenets of french parenting we have been following without knowing it. for example, we employed "the pause" (letting stenni fuss for a little while instead of getting her immediately, so that she could learn to soother herself and so as not to mess with her sleep cycle) during our informal sleep training, and she slept through the night very early. also i like the idea of letting the child discover things on his or her own without much prodding rather than trying to push the child toward what we often think of as the "appropriate developmental milestones" (most children will eventually reach these on their own anyway). however, some french parenting strategies are harder for me to swallow, such as very early daycare, all-day preschool, and allowing very young children to go away on vacation with the class from the school (and without parents). it may be the american in me, or maybe the slightly overbearing mom, but i just can't fathom shipping stenni off in a few years with near-perfect strangers. but anyway the book was certainly worth reading, most especially for the bit about how french children will eat almost anything, and calmly at that! we try to broaden stenni's palate by feeding her a lot of different vegetables and seafood as well as foods from other cultures (her current favorite thing is kielbasa, but she's also quite fond of broccoli and fish, which i cannot complain about), but remaining calm through several courses? that is something that we need to work on.
also, i'm reading french women don't get fat because it occurs to me that it's more of a philosophy about balance in food and in life than a "diet book" in the traditional sense, and that's good because pregnant women really shouldn't diet. one of the (markedly few) pleasures of being pregnant is not worrying about weight loss and rather about healthy living instead.
oh, and i also took out ruth reichl's tender at the bone: growing up at the table to read while i am on vacation this weekend. i like food writers, maybe i'll like this?
we are leaving for cooperstown on thursday after hubs speaks at a career symposium at the local community college. i think that his speaking, while looking good on his resume, is ridiculous because his agency is not only not hiring, but also interns need to be at least juniors in college, and the community college only has what would amount to freshmen and sophomores. but i digress. i'm picking him up from there and we are leaving for a nice mini-break with my sis and her boyfriend in tow. since i can no longer be excited for the beer and hard cider, i'm now just super psyched for the cheese. upstate ny is like, supreme dairy country, and i've almost never met a cheese i didn't like. but besides the cheese, i'm also looking forward to impromptu wiffleball and soccer games, the ghost tour, the farmer's market, and of course the baseball hall of fame.
so if you don't hear from me for a while, you know why.