A modern lifestyle brand redefining motherhood

As we approach the final stretch of 2017, it’s time to explore what’s on the horizon for emerging readers. I can tell you, the colder months will not disappoint. We have spinoffs of cherished classics. Messages of hope and inspiration weaved into the breathtaking pages of brilliantly illustrated picture books. And some whimsical tales guaranteed to leave a lasting impression on your child.


Here are some of the most anticipated books of fall/winter 2017 that are perfect for the young reader:

 

Good Day, Good Night

written by Margaret Wise Brown, illustrated by Loren Long

(October 3, 2017)

“Goodnight Moon” has been loved by generations. “Good Day, Good Night,” a previously unpublished picture book from Brown, is destined to become another universally treasured page turner. The sun rising is the start of a beautiful new day for a little bunny. He spends his waking hours saying hello to all those around him. When the sun starts to set, it’s now time to say goodnight. Good night, kitty. Good night, bear. Good night, people everywhere. “With pleasing echoes of Brown’s famous classic, including bookends of a cow jumping over a moon, this bedtime story will entice families back again and again,” says Kirkus Reviews.

After the Fall (How Humpty Dumpty Got Back Up Again)

by Dan Santat

(October 3, 2017)

We all know what happened to Humpty Dumpty. Poor guy. In this lively epilogue to the classic nursery rhyme, New York Times bestselling and award-winning author and illustrator, Dan Santat, shares what happened after the fall. Humpty had been an avid bird watcher, who spent his time high on the city walls. Now, he’s terrified of heights and sad that he can no longer do the things he loves to do. Can he muster the courage and overcome his fears? “More than a nursery rhyme remix, Santat’s story speaks boldly to the grip of fear and trauma, and to the exhilaration of mastering it,” says Publishers Weekly.

It Takes a Village

by Hillary Rodham Clinton

(Sept 12, 2017)

Penned by Secretary of State and Democratic Presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton and illustrated by two-time Caldecott Honor recipient Marla Frazee, “It Takes a Village” is the picture book companion to Clinton’s 1996 New York Times bestselling book of the same name. In a very divided country, and world, the book reminds us all that we are stronger together. Little ones will love the story of how one community came together to make their village a better place.

I See You

written by Michael Genhart, illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff

(October 9, 2017)

This wordless tale depicts the trials of a homeless woman whom only one boy can see. For a year, only he sees all that she endures having no home and very few personal belongings. Not to mention, not a soul reaches out to help her. Finally, in a heartwarming display of compassion, the little boy acknowledges her with a simple gesture. “I See You” is an ideal conversation starter to approach the difficult subject of homelessness.

La La La: A Story of Hope

written by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Jaime Kim

(October 3, 2017)

Kate DiCamillo, a Newbery Medalist and former National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, uses only one word, a girl singing “la,” in this much-anticipated picture book. The little girl, in search of a friend, sings “la, la, la,” hoping someone will sing in response. When she’s met with silence, she gathers the courage and ventures further out into the world – singing to the trees, the bees, and all the creatures around her. Silence. Finally, she hears an amazing sound. Is it the friend she’s been looking for?

The Nutcracker in Harlem

written by T.E. McMorrow, illustrated by James Ransome

(September 19, 2017)

In this jazz-inspired retelling of the classic Christmas story “The Nutcracker,” a young girl discovers her voice during the Harlem Renaissance after an enchanted toy comes to life on Christmas Eve. This is one book that deserves a place on every young reader’s bookshelf. Aside from holiday magic, the end provides a dose of history about the Harlem Renaissance and what motivated the author to write this book with a jazzy twist.

Little i

by Michael Hall

(September 5, 2017)

From the acclaimed and bestselling creator of “Red: A Crayon’s Story” and “Wonderfall,” comes a new book about the adventures of Little i. When his dot falls off and rolls into the ocean, Little i embarks on a journey to rescue his trusted companion. This delightful book teaches children the important lessons of self-confidence, belonging, and growing up, set to the tune of the alphabet.

The Bad Mood and the Stick

written by Lemony Snicket, illustrated by Matthew Forsythe

(October 3, 2017)

Lemony Snicket is back! In “The Bad Moon and the Stick” the bestselling author reveals how a bad mood is contagious and can cause grief as it travels from person to person. The simple story offers a fresh, thoughtful, and extremely humorous retake on the traditional way we often talk about grumpy moods. It’s okay to be unhappy, but there are better ways to overcome the crankiness – and before someone else catches the mood.

 

The Magic Misfits

written by Neil Patrick Harris, illustrated by Lissy Marlin

(November 21, 2017)

Everyone’s favorite award-winning actor, Neil Patrick Harris, debuts a series about a street magician who finds friends and magic in a New England town. In this first book, Carter the street magician runs away and winds up in a sleepy little town in the northeast. Things turn wonky when B.B. Bosso and his crew of crooked carnies arrive and began stealing from the town’s people. Carter teams up with five other boys, including an illusionist, to bring down the unruly bunch and save the day. “I read this book with excitement, delight, and the increasing suspicion that it was going to make me disappear,” said Lemony Snicket.

In Your Hands

written by Carole Boston Weatherford, illlustrated by Brian Pinkney

(September 12, 2017)

A black mother expresses the many hopes and dreams she has for her child in this breathtaking picture book about a mother’s enduring love. “The moving, poetic text offers both love and reassurance for children and a way to explore some difficult social issues. Insightful, poignant, groundbreaking – and a reminder that the lives of all children are also in our hands,” says Kirkus Reviews.

What upcoming children’s books are you excited to read? Share in the comments!

Who said motherhood doesn't come with a manual?

Subscribe to get inspiration and super helpful ideas to rock your #momlife. Motherhood looks amazing on you.

Already a subscriber? Log in here.

Toxic masculinity is having a cultural moment. Or rather, the idea that masculinity doesn't have to be toxic is having one.

For parents who are trying to raise kind boys who will grow into compassionate men, the American Psychological Association's recent assertion that "traditional masculinity ideology" is bad for boys' well-being is concerning because our kids are exposed to that ideology every day when they walk out of then house or turn on the TV or the iPad.

That's why a new viral ad campaign from Gillette is so inspiring—it proves society already recognizes the problems the APA pointed out, and change is possible.

We Believe: The Best Men Can Be | Gillette (Short Film) youtu.be

Gillette's new ad campaign references the "Me Too" movement as a narrator explains that "something finally changed, and there will be no going back."

If may seem like something as commercial as a marketing campaign for toiletries can't make a difference in changing the way society pressures influence kids, but it's been more than a decade since Dove first launched its Campaign for Real Beauty, and while the campaign isn't without criticism, it was successful in elevating some of the body-image pressure on girls but ushering in an era of body-positive, inclusive marketing.

Dove's campaign captured a mainstream audience at a time when the APA's "Guidelines for Psychological Practice with Girls and Women" were warning psychologists about how "unrealistic media images of girls and women" were negatively impacting the self-esteem of the next generation.

Similarly, the Gillette campaign addresses some of the issues the APA raises in its newly released "Guidelines for the Psychological Practice with Boys and Men."

According to the APA, "Traditional masculinity ideology has been shown to limit males' psychological development, constrain their behavior, result in gender role strain and gender role conflict and negatively influence mental health and physical health."

The report's authors define that ideology as "a particular constellation of standards that have held sway over large segments of the population, including: anti-femininity, achievement, eschewal of the appearance of weakness, and adventure, risk, and violence."

The APA worries that society is rewarding men who adhere to "sexist ideologies designed to maintain male power that also restrict men's ability to function adaptively."

That basically sounds like the recipe for Me Too, which is of course its own cultural movement.

Savvy marketers at Gillette may be trying to harness the power of that movement, but that's not entirely a bad thing. On its website, Gillette states that it created the campaign (called "The Best a Man Can Be," a play on the old Gillette tagline "The Best a Man Can Get") because it "acknowledge that brands, like ours, play a role in influencing culture."

Gillette's not wrong. We know that advertising has a huge impact on our kids. The average kid in America sees anywhere from 13,000 to 30,000 commercials on TV each year, according to the American Academy of Paediatrics, and that's not even counting YouTube ads, the posters at the bus stop and everything else.

That's why Gillette's take makes sense from a marketing perspective and a social one. "As a company that encourages men to be their best, we have a responsibility to make sure we are promoting positive, attainable, inclusive and healthy versions of what it means to be a man," the company states.

What does that mean?

It means taking a stance against homophobia, bullying and sexual harassment and that harmful, catch-all-phrase that gives too many young men a pass to engage in behavior that hurts others and themselves: "Boys will be boys."

Gillette states that "by holding each other accountable, eliminating excuses for bad behavior, and supporting a new generation working toward their personal 'best,' we can help create positive change that will matter for years to come."

Of course, it's not enough for razor marketers to do this. Boys need support from parents, teachers, coaches and peers to be resilient to the pressures of toxic masculinity.

When this happens, when boys are taught that strength doesn't mean overpowering others and that they can be successful while still being compassionate, the APA says we will "reduce the high rates of problems boys and men face and act out in their lives such as aggression, violence, substance abuse, and suicide."

This is a conversation worth having and 2019 is the year to do it.

You might also like:

Teaching a young child good behavior seems like it should be easy and intuitive when, in reality, it can be a major challenge. When put to the test, it's not as easy as you might think to dole out effective discipline, especially if you have a strong-willed child.

As young children develop independence and learn more about themselves in relation to others and their environment, they can easily grow frustrated when they don't always know how to communicate their feelings or how to think and act rationally.

It's crucial that parents recognize these limitations and also set up rules to protect your child and those they encounter. These rules, including a parent's or caregiver's follow-up actions, allow your child to learn and develop a better understanding of what is (and what is not) appropriate behavior.

Here are a few key ways to correct negative behavior in an efficient way:

1. Use positive reinforcement.

Whenever possible, look to deliver specific and positive praise when a child engages in good behavior or if you catch them in an act of kindness. Always focus on the positive things they are doing so that they are more apt to recreate those behaviors. This will help them start to learn the difference between good and poor behavior.

2. Be simple and direct.

Though this seems like a no-brainer, focus your child using constructive feedback versus what not to do or where they went wrong. Give reasons and explanations for rules, as best as you can for their age group.

For example, if you're teaching them to be gentle with your pet, demonstrate the correct motions and tell your child, "We're gentle when we pet the cat like this so that we don't hurt them," versus, "Don't pull on her tail!"

3. Re-think the "time out."

Many classrooms are starting to have cozy nooks where children are encouraged to have alone time when they may feel out of control. In lieu of punishment, sending a child to a "feel-good" area removes them from a situation that's causing distress. This provides much-needed comfort and allows for the problem-solving process to start on its own.

4. Use 'no' sparingly.

When a word is repeated over and over, it begins to lose meaning. There are better ways to discipline your child than saying "no." Think about replaying the message in a different way to increase the chances of your child taking note. Rather than shouting, "No, stop that!" when your toddler is flinging food at dinnertime, it's more productive to use encouraging words that prompt better behavior, such as, "Food is for eating, what are we supposed to do when we're sitting at the dinner table?" This encourages them to consider their behavior.

The above methods help create teachable moments by providing opportunities for development while making sure the child feels safe and cared for. It is important to mirror these discipline techniques at home and communicate often with your child care providers so that you're always on the same page.

You might also like:

To the mamas awake in the middle of the night,

If you are one of the many moms with a little darling who doesn't sleep through the night, I feel your pain. I really do.

Having been blessed with two wonderful sleepers (aka my first and second babies), my third baby has been a shock to my system. He hasn't slept through the night since he was born and he's now 16 months. I do everything "right." I put him down sleepy but awake so he can settle himself to sleep. I keep the room dark and quiet.

But one simple fact remains: When my son wakes up in the night, he wants me. And he'll scream the house down if he doesn't get me.

Last night my 1-year-old woke at 3:30 am. He was stirring a bit at first, then started to really let it rip, so I got him up out of his crib and brought him into bed with me. We cuddled for a while. Then suddenly, he wanted to get off the bed and I said no. Then he started to scream and throw himself around on the bed before eventually being sick everywhere.

It was now 4:30 am. I dutifully changed the sheets, changed my son, changed myself, and then we climbed back into bed, the smell of vomit still lingering.

I tried to put him back in his crib around 5 am but he woke right up. I brought him back into bed with me, but quickly realized this wasn't what he wanted either. He was thrashing around again, trying to figure out a way off of the bed.

Finally, close to 6 am he decided he wanted to go to sleep. After about 10 minutes of watching him sleep, I felt brave enough to try to put him back in his room. I gently lifted him up, placed him in his crib and quietly crept back into my bed.

This left me with just enough time to fall back into a deep sleep, which meant I felt exhausted when my alarm went off just after 7 am.

Sadly, last night wasn't a one-off. This is a fairly frequent occurrence for me (although dealing with vomit is luckily quite rare!). Which means that when I say I understand what it's like to have a baby who doesn't sleep, I really mean it.

So here's what I want you to know, mama.

If you are awake in the night because your baby needs you then you are not alone. Despite what you might read, it's common for babies to wake up through the night. So if you're sitting in bed feeling like you're the only mother in the world awake, trust me, you're far from it.

There are mamas like us all over the world. Sitting there in the dark. Cuddling babies or soothing them to sleep again. Some, like me, might be changing sheets or abandoning any hope of getting sleep that night at all. Others might be up and down like a yo-yo every few hours. The rest might just be up once and then will be able to go back to sleep.

There will, however, also be mamas who are sound asleep. Mamas who have older children who no longer wake in the night. And they would want you to know that it will be okay. It won't be forever. One day, you'll realize that your baby no longer needs or wants you in the night.

And while you'll be so glad for your sleep you'll probably also be a little sad that there are no more night time cuddles.

It's hard to cope with a baby who doesn't sleep well at night. Really hard sometimes. You may feel like you can't deal with it anymore or you may be wishing that this phase would just stop already so you can get some rest.

Exhaustion often means that you struggle to get through the day. It can mean that you find it hard to drag yourself out of bed. Or if you're anything like me, you might be irritable and snap at the people you love. Or maybe it means relying on caffeine, sugar and Netflix to get you and your kiddos through the day.

But here's the amazing thing about mothers—no matter what has gone down during the night, we get up as usual. We go about our day just like everyone else. We care for and love our children, without giving them a hard time for disrupting our sleep. We don't moan, we don't complain. We just get on with it.

And when night comes, we go to bed knowing that there's every chance we'll be awake in the middle of the night again...

We get up without fail when our babies need us and we do what we need to do for them. Because we are the nighttime warriors. We are mamas.

You might also like:

No one decides to be a stay-at-home mom for the paycheck—but if we were to earn one, it would put us in league with some CEOs. Although it doesn't do much for the bank account, a survey that calculated what the average salary would be for a stay-at-home mom is mighty validating. (Remember this next time anyone asks what you do all day.)

Keep reading... Show less
Motherly provides information of a general nature and is designed for educational purposes only. This site does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.Your use of the site indicates your agreement to be bound by our  Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Information on our advertising guidelines can be found here.