Giveaway: Must-Have Parenting Books

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Enter the Parenting Book Giveaway Feb 10-12 2014 for a chance to win a package of great parenting books!Another morning, another giveaway! (Skip to the Rafflecopter entry form.)

I don’t have a favourite child, but I do have a favourite giveaway. And this is it. These books are mainstays of a well-stocked parenting library. Trust me. You want these must-have parenting books. Even you end up not winning, please consider checking copies out of your local library.

The 7 Worst Things Good Parents Do: The 7 chapters describing these “worst” things are

  • Baby your child
  • Put your marriage last
  • Push your child into too many activities
  • Ignore your emotional or spiritual life
  • Be your child’s best friend
  • Fail to give your child structure
  • Expect your child to fulfill your dreams

Common sense? Sure. Nevertheless, it doesn’t hurt to remind ourselves to maintain balance in our lives and those of our children.

Both ldskatelyn and AngelaBickford3 have reviewed The Christian Parenting Handbook: 50 Heart-Based Strategies for All the Stages of Your Child’s Life. They both liked it and point out that you don’t have to be Christian to find useful content in the book.

I haven’t read The UnWired Mom – Choosing to Live Free in an Internet Addicted World (yet), but it appears to me to be a good fit for the thoughtful blogosphere-involved parenting community we have here at HDYDI.  From the book description:

The premise of The UnWired Mom is not that the Internet is bad; it is that we can enjoy it and use it without losing our lives to it. The UnWired Mom is about keeping our lives full and whole and allowing technology to be a healthy part of that life instead of an unhealthy, consuming one. The UnWired Mom, at its core, is about freedom.

Last, but not least, is the book that his influenced my parenting above all others, NurtureShock: New Thinking About Children. It’s… well, I reviewed it yesterday.

Win this package of great parenting books at hdydi.comTo enter, you just need to comment on any post from this week.


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Don’t forget that we still have two other giveaways underway!

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Giveaway: Books for Expectant and New Parents of Multiples

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It’s time for our third giveaway of the week! You can enter by leaving us a comment on post from this week. Make sure you click into the Rafflecopter widget so that your entry is counted!

Enter the Parenting Book Giveaway Feb 12-14 2014 for a chance to win a package of books for expectant and new MoMs

This package of books is for new or expecting parents of multiples. If your kids are older, this could be a wonderful gift for the MoM-to-be in your life! You could win a copy of Twins! Pregnancy, Birth and the First Year of Life and ebooks Beating Bed Rest (by our own Angela!), Twin Manibreasto: A Success Story of Milk and Multiples (by Mercedes!) and Confessions of a Cloth Diaper Convert: A Simple, Comprehensive Guide to Using Cloth Diapers.

Win this package of books by leaving a comment at

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Don’t forget that our first two giveaways are still open! Enter to win nutrition and fitness books and twin parenting books.

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Giveaway: Nutrition and Fitness Books

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Enter the Parenting Book Giveaway Feb 11-13 2014 for a chance to win 'One Bite at a Time', '42 Days to Fit' and 'Wholesome Baby Food Guide'

Welcome to Day 2 of parenting book review week! Today’s giveaway is a package of books for keeping mommy fit and baby well-fed! This one’s for all parents with wee ones, regardless of whether they’re multiples, so tell your friends with singletons too.

You can win ebooks One Bite at a Time, Revised: Nourishing Recipes for Cancer Survivors and Their Friends and 42 Days to Fit as well as a hard copy of The Wholesome Baby Food Guide: Over 150 Easy, Delicious, and Healthy Recipes from Purees to Solids.

Win this package of fitness and food books for moms at

Just leave us a comment on any post from this week to enter the giveaway!

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Don’t forget to let your mommy friends know!

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Parenting Book Theme Week and Giveaway

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All week, we’re going to be reviewing books about parenting here at How Do You Do It? That’s right! It’s time for another theme week.

HDYDI Parenting Book Review Theme WeekWe’re going to be talking about books across the spectrum, from 1-2-3 Magic, Beyond the Sling and How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk to NurtureShock, Raising Your Spirited Child and Parenting, Inc.  along with many, many others. Margie and Janna will share some thoughts on parenting books in general, so stayed tuned for their posts.

To make things even more fun, we’re hosting giveaways every day this week, offering up packages of books to add to your library. Check out our 6 am (CST) posts every day this week for your chance to win!

Readers anywhere in the world are eligible to win ebooks. However, to keep our shipping expenses manageable, hard copy books are limited to winners with US mailing addresses. Should a non-US reader win a package that includes both ebooks and hard copy books, the hard copy books will be awarded to a second place US winner while the original winner will be sent the ebooks.

Giveaway Book Images(1)Today’s package includes two books perfect for MoMs: Double Duty : The Parents’ Guide to Raising Twins, from Pregnancy through the School Years (2nd Edition) by Christina Baglivi Tinglof and The Art of Parenting Twins: The Unique Joys and Challenges of Raising Twins and Other Multiples by Patricia Malmstrom and Janet Poland. Since these are both hard copies, this particular giveaway is limited to US participants. However, giveaways over the next few days will include ebooks, available to a winner anywhere in the world!

Enter the Parenting Book Giveaway Feb 10-12 2014 for a chance to win 'Double Duty' and 'The Art of Parenting Twins'

We’re offering a bazillion ways to enter, but the only thing you have to do throw your hat in the ring is leave us a comment on any of this week’s posts by the time the giveaway ends.

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Want to see the full list of giveaways and current list of book review posts? Just keep an eye on our theme week page.

Got a must-read book on your shelf? Tell us about it in the comments!

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How to Afford Twins Giveaway!!

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HDYDI’s money saving “How to Afford Twins” theme week is now over!  We sincerely hope that many of you learned some great new ways to save, budget, cut back, or bring in a little extra. Having kids is an expensive endeavor, and having two or more at once can make things even more expensive.

So, to reward our readers for our awesome money saving week and to help you know how to afford twins, triplets, and more, we decided to pull our own resources (none of us are paid to post here and there are no ads on our site) and host a giveaway!  And we will have three separate winners so we can spread the love!

giveawayBut, to enter, you do need to check out our “How to Afford Twins” series. (You can also check out How Do You Do It?’s Pinterest Board “How to Afford Twins.”)

Here are the topics that we covered this week (in case you missed some):

Enter the Giveaway for a chance to win one of three gift cards!

After you check out a few posts, leave a comment below, telling us which one you enjoyed (or checked out!) and then enter the giveaway in the rafflecopter box! Score some extra entries for following How Do You Do It? on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest!
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The drawing goes from Sunday, September 29, 2013 to Saturday, October 5 at midnight. Winners will be notified by email and have 48 hours to respond.

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Christian Parenting Handbook

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Over at my blog this week I had the privilege of being apart of a “Launch Week” for a new parenting book called The Christian Parenting Handbook: 50 Heart-Based Strategies for All the Stages of Your Child’s Life by Dr. Scott Turansky and Joanne Miller R.N.

I received a free copy of the book and in return gave an honest review of the book.  You can see my full review HERE on my blog.  But, I have to say, it’s a great resource for all parents, even if you aren’t Christian.  So, that’s why I thought I would tell all you HDYDI readers about it, too!  It’s great for all parents because it focused on long-term goals with your children.  It emphasizes the heart of your child and helping them develop character qualities, and how to strengthen their character flaws.  The book addresses controversial topics and issues like spanking, helps you understand the difference between things like discipline and punishment, and does so in a non-judgmental way.  It’s not a “do-it-my-way-or-else” parenting book.  It gives you guiding principles and examples.  It shares the “how” of  Proverbs 22:6: Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. 

I’ve applied some of the principles and ideas taught in it with my twin three year-olds and it has made a difference.  Most of the difference made in our home from reading this book has been in how I approach my parenting and discipline.  We’ve been happier because of it.

As I am part of the launch team of this book, I have the privilege of giving away a copy of this book and its companion guide!  You can enter to win it over on my blog HERE.  I hope you will!  There aren’t that many entries yet, so the odds are in your favor!  Yeah!

I also want to let you know that the publishers of the book are hosting a Mega Multi-Blogger Giveaway (no purchase necessary) where you can enter for a chance to win some awesome prizes, including an iPad and $200 Amazon gift card!  Feel free to enter that HERE.

And finally, if you buy a copy of the book this week, they will give you $400 worth in additional resources for FREE!  But you have to buy a copy before Sunday at midnight.  Unfortunately, since they’ve been pushing so hard this week, everybody is sold out of physical copies of the book except for the National Center for Biblical ParentingThey are selling it at 25% off.  BUT, you can still buy electronic version of the book from your favorite outlets, like Amazon or Barnes and Noble, and get the extra resources for free still.  Full details about this deal HERE.

I love reading parenting books as I know I am an imperfect person and always can use some good advice on how to raise great kids and enjoy my time with them, too!  What are some of your favorite parenting books?  What have you read lately that has helped you with your multiples?

ldskatelyn is a wife and a mother of fraternal twin three-year olds and 6-week old son.  She loves reading books and then reviewing them. She blogs about her life over at  Her affiliate links are used above.

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Guest Post: Review and Giveaway – One and the Same

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Categories Famous Twins, Identical, Mommy Issues, Multiples in the News, Parenting Twins, RelationshipsTags , , , 20 Comments

Hello, dear HDYDI readers!  We have a special treat for you today.  A guest post from the super-awesome twin mom and blogger, Sadia, of Double the Fun.  Sadia has given us a very thoughtful review of One and the Same, by Abigail Pogrebin.  Even better still, the author is letting us give away a signed copy of the book!  Don’t forget to leave a comment that includes a valid email address in the form (email is never made public, never passed out or sold to anyone) so that we can contact you if you win. One entry per person, please.  Comments will close this Friday, July 9, at 5PM EDT and a winner will be chosen at random.

And now, here’s Sadia!

– – – – –

The other day my husband said, “You’ve been reading a lot of parenting books. Don’t you think you’re a good mom?”

“It’s not that,” I told him. “I think I’m a pretty good mother to Jessica and Melody. I read these books because I want to stay ten steps ahead of them. I want to be challenged by other people’s ideas. They’ll either help me recommit to the parenting philosophies and practices I already subscribe to, or they’ll make me rethink how I parent.”

Abigail Pogrebin’s One and the Same is a book that has challenged me as a mother of twins, causing me to change my parenting in some ways and dig in my heels in others. I hadn’t yet heard of the book when Abby asked me to review it several months ago, but I’m sure I would have bought and devoured it by now even if she hadn’t.

Abby is a journalist and an identical twin herself. She set out to write about twinship, and explores the myriad experiences of twinhood in depth. One and the Same balances intimate stories of individual sets of twins with patterns identified by researchers who study twins. Much of the writing is intensely personal, but it speaks to the mystery, joy and challenges of the universal twin experience.

I was particularly intrigued by the way that twinship can impact marriage. Abby describes it beautifully. She says that being Robin’s twin has given her, “a congenital clarity of what it is to be wholly close to another human being.” Some of the twins Abby interviewed drew parallels between the twin relationship and marriage. I hope that the compromise skills that my daughters are learning to survive life with one another serve them well should they choose to marry. On the flip-side, Abby points out that during her time at the Twinsburg convention, she notices a high number of twins, mostly male, who have never been married. Might women be put off by the intimacy and affection that twin brothers share?

I wept my way through the chapter on twin death. Abby interviewed a man who lost his twin in the Twin Towers on 9/11. She also found a number of people who thought they were singletons and developed an inexplicable fascination with twins, only to discover that they were the sole survivors of twin pregnancies. I look at my daughters and can’t imagine how one could navigate her life without the other.

The only part of the book that I didn’t like was, ironically enough, the one that dealt with parenting twins. Whereas Abby spent the rest of the book showing us how different and unique each experience of twinship is, this chapter spoke in generalities, many of which failed to resonate with my experience as a mother of twins. Like Abby, I take exception to the experts’ assertion that every mother of multiples has a favourite child. From time to time, each of my kids drives me nuts, and from time to time, one needs more of my attention. The love, though, is equally infinite. The takeaway of the chapter was that the challenges of raising twins, especially in the early years, outweigh the joys. I disagree. Yes, it’s often hard, but good parenting is hard, no matter how many kids you have.

The parenting lesson I took away from One and the Same is that twinship does not have to compromise individuality. Twins don’t have to choose between their twin identity and their personal identity. A singleton myself, I recently realized that I had assumed that emphasizing my daughters’ twinship would cripple them as they developed their individual identities and interests. Abbie shows us that does not have to be the case. Being a twin is part of what make my daughters, Jessica and Melody, unique. However, One and the Same doesn’t shy away from the reality that there are pairs of twins out there for whom their twinship defines them. For instance, it quotes Debbie Ganz, who, with her sister Lisa used to run a restaurant in which all the waiters were pairs of identical twins. “A guy once said to me, ‘I don’t want to know about your twin thing: what are you like?’ I froze and started to feel upset. Because I couldn’t answer him.”

One and the Same is the most astute book I’ve come across that discusses the twin experience. I would have enjoyed it equally, although differently, if I’d never met a twin in my life.

Q and A with Abigail Pogrebin

Abigail Pogrebin was kind enough to answer a few questions that occurred to me while I was reading One and the Same. This is what she had to say.

Sadia: You share intimate and sometimes heart-breaking details about how you feel about your changing relationship with Robin. Has she read your book? What was her reaction? What about your parents’?

Abby: I didn’t feel I could write this book without Robin’s blessing (and her editing – she’s a formidable journalist) and so I showed her a draft as soon as I finished it. I admit that it wasn’t an easy read for her at times, and she even challenged me in some places, which I think made me revisit certain sections and rethink them. But the truth is that Robin was incredibly supportive of the book, both privately and publicly. I was grateful that she agreed to go on the Today Show with me and that she worked so hard to prepare for a special event we did together last fall in New York in which she interviewed me about the book before an audience of 200-plus; she made it a wonderful evening. Most importantly, this book made us closer in ways I can’t quite explain. It’s like the truth finally was on the table and we could get on with this phase of our relationship.

As for my parents, they were also tremendous boosters, but feel somewhat baffled by why twinship can end up being complicated when it felt so simple to them during our childhoods.

Sadia: You’ve described twin romance beautifully, and have been able to convey how normal and natural that intense relationship is, even if much of society is unable to comprehend it and sometimes views it as pathological. My husband and I see that romance growing in our own daughters. Do you have any advice to parents like us on how to prepare our kids for resistance they may get from others regarding their twin relationship?

Abby: My only advice is to talk about it ahead of time, to discuss the fact that their twin romance can be intimidating, excluding, or off-putting to other people and sometimes they may want to keep their intimacy to themselves, if that makes sense.

Sadia: Many parents of young multiples are careful not to refer to their children as “the twins” or “the boys”, because they want to help the world see their children as individuals, and not just members of a set. If your children had been twins, would you object to them being referred to as “the twins”?

Abby: Yes, if I had twins, I would object to people calling them “the twins,” because I do think it has a cumulative negative effect over time; it  underlines their two-ness as opposed to their singularity. It may seem unimportant, especially when the twins are young, but I know I hated the term growing up. It felt lazy to me when someone called us that; is it really so taxing for them to say our names when they’re talking about us?

Sadia: If you could give parents three pieces of advice on nurturing both their twin’s closeness and their independence, what would they be?


  1. Spend separate time with your twins. Even if they resist doing things apart.
  2. Encourage different activities, lessons, playdates, pursuits.
  3. Let their insularity be. It has its own magic, and at the end of the day, the intimacy wins.

Sadia: We have a set of triplets in our extended family. I can’t help wondering how having more than one same-age sibling would affect relationships between multiples. Do you know any higher order multiples? How would you compare their relationships to those of the twins you interviewed?

Abby: I don’t know any triplets myself, but I did interview one in my book and her story is worth reading – it appears in the chapter on competition. It amazed me that a triplet can feel like the third wheel when the other two triplets are twins.

Sadia: You quote Joan Friedman’s distinction between being known and being noticed, as it pertains to twinship. Could you please explain this distinction to HDYDI’s readers? You acknowledge that her distinction resonated with your sister’s experience of being a twin. Do you ever feel less “known” because you were a twin

Abby: As twins, you’re often “noticed” because you stand out – especially if you’re identical. It’s an oddity, a novelty, people notice you, look at you longer, compare you. People are curious, they confer all sorts of ideas about what your bond and relationship must be like. But most of the time, they don’t really get to know you; even the people who see you regularly –relatives, friends, teachers. They don’t necessarily make the effort to get to know who you really separately (and yes, it may take more effort to ascertain those differences.) They seem content with the superficiality of your twinship. So they notice you, yes, but they don’t know you.

* Disclaimer – Although Ms Pogrebin did contact Sadia to ask her to review the book, Sadia purchased her own copy. This review was not influenced in any way by the author.

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