Tuesday, February 08, 2011

It Takes Two

Welcome to the February Carnival of Natural Parenting: Parenting Essentials
This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama. This month our participants have shared the parenting essentials that they could not live without. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

It Takes Two

The real reason it takes two people to make a baby has very little to do with biological facts regarding egg and sperm. It takes a man and a woman to make a baby because it’s bloody hard work to raise said baby. Perhaps my most frequent thought over the course of the last fifteen months has been “How in the world do single parents do it?” closely followed by “How in the world do parents of twins do it?” And if I go so far as to ponder single parents with twins, my brain really starts to short circuit. But I digress. The purpose of this post is to spell out why I cannot imagine parenting without my fabulous husband.

At our childbirth classes he knew the answer to every single question asked by the midwives.

He had no fear of the process of labor and delivery and so could convey absolute confidence in my ability to birth our son.

Before the subject of circumcision had even crossed my radar, he informed me that any son of ours would remain intact (Australian readers should note that this is still a disturbingly common practice in the US).

He supported the breastfeeding relationship wholeheartedly, delivering glasses of water, snacks and shoulder rubs while we navigated a difficult start to nursing.

When nothing could have been further from my mind, he was the one who put the effort into establishing our system for washing cloth diapers.

He frequently begins parenting conversations with “So I’ve been doing some research on (fill in the blank – attachment parenting, home schooling, discipline strategies, etc.).”

He never turns down an opportunity to wear the baby (and, good natured pack mule that he is, can often be seen lugging the diaper bag and the groceries as well).

With a hug and a bit of perspective, he keeps me from crossing the line to insanity on the days when it all seems like too much.

He already thinks about the ways he’ll foster a love of learning in our children when they’re older and how he’ll convey knowledge of science, finances, nature and more.

He doesn’t mind, and perhaps even enjoys, little feet that kick him in the head in the middle of the night.

Always one to think outside the box, he never does anything simply because it's how everyone else does it.

Like everything he does, he has committed himself completely and totally to the job of parenting (and has been dreaming about having more children from the day our son was born).

And finally, the joy in his eyes when he looks at his son is clearly visible and warms my heart each and every day.

So while I can think of a whole list of things ranging from websites to baby carriers that make this parenting journey a whole lot easier, it is my husband whom I cannot imagine parenting without.


Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Code Name: Mama and Hobo Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

  • Not Without Him — The love Starr at Taking Time shares with her husband is the foundation of her parenting.
  • I Cannot Imagine Parenting Without B(.)(.)bs — From an uneducated dreamer to a breastfeeding mother of a toddler, nursing has forever changed Kristy at Strings to Things's relationship with her daughter and her outlook on life.
  • Raising a Child in the Internet Village — When Jenn at Monkey Butt Junction has a question or concern about parenting, she turns to the Internet. What did parents do before Google?
  • Partner in Crime and ParentingBethy at Bounce Me to the Moon can't imagine parenting without her husband's sense of humor - he brings her laughter and love every day.)
  • I Make MilkPatti at Jazzy Mama can't imagine trying to mother her babies without her breasts, but she could do it if she had to.
  • New Perspectives Bring New BeginningsMJ at Wander Wonder Discover, who is a former authoritarian mamma, has gained perspective via parenting.
  • Time Out!Mrs. Green at Little Green Blog explores how time apart can increase your capacity to give unconditionally.
  • Unimaginable Without HimKristina at heyred designs is celebrating her amazing partner, without whom none of her parenting experience would be possible.
  • My Parenting NecessityClaire at The Adventures of Lactating Girl needs "me time" in order to be the Mama she wants to be.
  • Babywearing As a Way of LifeDarcel at The Mahogany Way talks about the benefits of babywearing in everyday life.
  • Parenting Partnership — Sometimes Abbie at Farmer's Daughter doesn't appreciate her husband enough, but she definitely couldn't imagine parenting without his help.
  • Parenting EssentialsMomma Jorje loves her parenting products, but she needs you even more.
  • My Parenting Must-Have: SupportJoella at Fine and Fair wrote a letter to her daughter about the role that support from friends and family plays in her mothering.
  • It's More Than Just Hair — Think doing hair is full of fluff? Too girly? Useless? Karli from Curly Hairdo Ideas used to think so too.
  • The Minimalist Parent — The parents at Living Peacefully with Children embrace a minimalist perspective when it comes to baby gear. A good sling is all they need.
  • Without My BreastsCharise at I Thought I Knew Mama can't imagine parenting without her breasts; here's why.
  • Loves Books, Loves PeopleSeonaid at the Practical Dilettante discovers that the library is a perfect fit for her family's needs.
  • An Ode to the Maya WrapRevMama's next child might be named Maya, because of her fondness for the sling.
  • Avoiding the Padded RoomPecky at Benny and Bex is here to testify that it takes a village to raise a child.
  • My parenting essentials, from Tivo to battery-operated monstrositiesLauren at Hobo Mama presents a list of parenting essentials you didn't even know you needed (and probably don't…).
  • Attachment Parenting Through Separation: It Makes It a Little BetterJessica at This Is Worthwhile talks about how she couldn't survive her separation without attachment parenting and the bond it's afforded her with her 3 year old son.
  • Parenting EssentialsDeb Chitwood at Living Montessori Now shares the principles she used to parent her children from infants to adults.
  • My Parenting Essentials — The things that are truly essential to Kim at In Desperate Need of Entertainment aren't things at all.
  • I'm No One Without My Sling — How baby carrying is essential to the parenting of Jessica Claire at Crunchy-Chewy Mama.
  • I Cannot Imagine Parenting Without...Isil at Smiling Like Sunshine talks about what she needs to raise her children.
  • February Carnival of Natural Parenting — Through her experiences over the last five and a half years, Casey at Love What Is has discovered her most important tool for parenting is using her instincts.
  • CNP: I Cannot Imagine Parenting Without __________.The Artsymama discloses the one thing that gave her back control of herself as a parent.
  • Laugh Until I Cry — Laughing with her sons keeps Acacia at Fingerpaint & Superheroes connected and grounded.
  • I Cannot Imagine Parenting WithoutLuschka at Diary of a First Child realizes what the one thing she can't imagine parenting without is, and it turns out it's not a thing after all.
  • It Takes Two — Here are a few of the reasons why Jenn at Adventures Down Under cannot imagine parenting without her fabulous husband.
  • Stopping to Listen — Though it wasn't easy at first, Knocked Up - Knocked Over cannot imagine parenting her daughter without listening first to what she is telling her.
  • The Essence of Parenting — There are many wonderful resources that make life easier for Michelle at the Parent Vortex to parent, but the essence is the relationship between parent and child.
  • What I Cannot Live WithoutSybil at Musings of a Milk Maker considers her computer to be a parenting lifeline.
  • True Blessings: White Noise and GrandparentsKat at Loving {Almost} Every Moment can't live without her white noise machine and the support of her parents.
  • The Necessities! — What "stuff" does a natural parent like Lily, aka Witch Mom really need? Not much, it turns out.
  • Mama Showed MeMama Mo at Attached at the Nip writes about how parenting wisdom is passed on by example.
  • Ode to the Loo — For Joni Rae at Tales of a Kitchen Witch, the bathroom is her safe place, where she can take a minute to calm down if she is feeling touched out.
  • Go, Mama. Go!Andrea!!! at Ella-Bean & Co. has been able to integrate her many roles through her get-up-and-go parenting essential, exercise!
  • My Other HalfBecky at Old New Legacy realizes what a relief it is to have her husband parent alongside her.
  • Grace, Love, and CoffeeMrsH at Fleeting Moments realizes that lifelines can take the form of the profound, or the mundane. Both are ok.
  • Supportive Spouse, Check! — There are so many parenting tools and gadgets that are superfluous, but the one essential, for Danielle at born.in.japan, has been her supportive spouse.
  • Why I'm a BabywearerMeredith at Becoming Mamas reflects on the ways babywearing has enhanced her mama baby relationship...and made life easier to boot.
  • It's Marvelous Out Here, Kiddo!Rachael at The Variegated Life can't imagine parenting in the big city without the marvels of Prospect Park to share with her Critter.
  • Yes, Thank YouAmy at Anktangle offers tips on how to ask for and accept help, an essential for successful parenting.
  • Parenting Essentials Checklist: Mom’s Inner Rebel and Her Kids’ VoicesOlivia at Write About Birth reflects on raising global citizens and saying no to societal norms.
  • Eco-Mama Online! — An Eco-Mama living in the mountains of a nature island, Terri at Child of the Nature Isle finds it essential to connect to nature and to connect online.
  • Sorry, We Just Sold the Last OneNev at The Adventures of Lime confesses she missed out the day they handed out patience.
  • LaughTashmica at The Mother Flippin' Blog reveals her super power, her talisman agains mean mommy.
  • My Priceless Parenting Resource — What do books, a magazine community, my mother and the local playgroup have in common? Lucy at Dreaming Aloud tells us...
  • The Gift of Shared TimeTree at Mom Grooves strives to experience the world from her daughter's perspective.
  • Follow the GigglesDionna at Code Name: Mama can’t live without the sound of her child’s giggles - come watch her video and you’ll agree!
  • Can I Mommy Without Boob?Emily at Crunchy(ish) Mama shares her fears about weaning and losing part of that the mother/child bond.


  1. Ok, so this is one thing my wonderful husband doesn't do, research! How awesome for you, really!!!

  2. Anonymous9:25 AM

    He sounds I like an amazing husband. I don't see how single moms do it, I have so much respect for those women! My hunsband is the thing I could not do without as well.

  3. I could have written so much of this post - having a supportive partner has made this parenting gig *so* much easier to handle! Thank you for sharing.

    ~Dionna @ Code Name: Mama

  4. Beautiful tribute! I'm so impressed by how hands-on your husband is about every aspect of parenting. For instance, my husband's all about the babywearing and cloth diapering, but he also doesn't do the research. It's cool to hear your husband really does it all!

  5. Another husband loving post:-) What a beautiful carnival this has been!

    Many blessings!

  6. Like you, I don't know how single parents cope *at all*. I'm totally in awe of them. Gorgeous tribute to your husband, thanks for sharing :)

  7. Thanks everyone. I'm very lucky indeed and he's very flattered (both by the post and by your lovely comments)! Though just between you and me, you'll notice I didn't say anything about meticulous housekeeping skills :) That's okay though, I'm still keeping him :)

  8. I love and honor you, Sister, and your way with words! You are both amazing. You have a great deal of admiration from your older sis! XOXOXO

  9. Ah thanks my love!