Weekend Reads: Betsy DeVos Sucks, Vaccines for Adults, and Why Does the US Let 12 Year Olds Marry?

Happy Weekend Readers! It’s February 12th, that means it’s Darwin Day.  Celebrate by going to a museum or perhaps evolving. Go Nuts!

Yet another Grounded Parent has been picked up by a mainstream, non-swearing publication. Let’s celebrate our own Jenny Splitter’s first piece for Parents, 5 Lessons From a Reformed Sleep Training Fanatic. 

Betsy DeVos is coming for your children. 

Because we here at GP think Fed is Best, it is important for us to keep an eye on the formula manufacturers, and not in a tin foil hat way, but in a consumer advocate way. That’s why this report from the Consumerist is especially alarming because a whistleblower claims a major baby formula company has used defective packaging. 

Alexandra Chandler serves her country at the Office of Naval Intelligence. She is also a trans woman. Listen to her story. 

25 Things Moms Have Done While Sleep Deprived.

The CDC has issued new guidelines for adult vaccinations.   Doublecheck your records with your doctor the next time you visit!

Book Riot points us to great books from the countries singled out by Trump’s noxious and ill conceived travel ban.   Literature is a great way to combat bigotry and ignorance.

And A Mighty Girl gives us 15 Books about Mighty Girl refugees. 

If you have middle school kids in the US you may have seen  “Wonder,” by R.J. Palacio come home with them, (the Schmoo and the Peanut loved it,) Amy Joyce at On Parenting talks to the author about the importance of parents teaching their children kindness. 

What do you think of the current situation in America, in regards to kindness and what our kids are experiencing? One of the big tragedies of this election cycle has been just how exposed kids have been to the absolute devastating cruelty and meanness of what passed for ordinary politics and continues to pass. The lack of respect, lack of dignity, the lack of any shame about lying, all the things we teach our kids not to be. Kids learn what they live. So if they see the president of the United States mocking a disabled person, or an entire political organization singling out a culture or religion, they internalize that. My hope is that a book like “Wonder,” and any other book out there that can undo the harm that this election cycle has done, will at least mitigate what has happened.

I can see this becoming the On Parenting section of the Reads each week, but they are doing a bang up job so I have to keep linking them 😉 For instance, here’s a great article about how to talk to kids about sexual abuse and how to prevent it. 

A black Dallas family that does everything right still deals with racism every day. 

It’s not that they have been harassed by a rogue police officer — the mistreatment that captures headlines. It’s the thousand other ways they are made to feel criminalized, less than, invisible.

A hotel employee ignored their family at the front desk, only to help a white customer in line behind them. Was he racist, or did he just overlook them? A white guy at the airport rolled over Frances’ foot with his suitcase and refused to apologize. Was he racist, or simply rude? Kids at school joked that their son and other black students looked like a gang. When will it end?

This is the gulf in America that people of color feel every day. Whites live on one side, largely unaware it even exists. Families like the Waterses live on the other, exhausted by racial questions intrinsic in each day, each hour, each minute.

Why does the United States still allow kids as young as 12 to get married?  (Hint… there are no good answers…)

‪”This is how adults should behave!” – Neil deGrasse Tyson


Featured Image Credit: Blotz Photo Arts from our trip to Hocking Hills State Park

Louis Doench

Lou Doench is a 52 year old father of three. Twelve years ago he married the coolest woman in the world and gave up the lucrative career of being a photography student to become a stay at home husband and Dad, or SAHD. An atheist geek, or a geeky atheist if you prefer, Lou likes reading, photography, video gaming, disc golf, baseball and Dr. Who. He has been playing Dungeons and Dragons since 1976. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio. He is also an excellent home cook, not that his children would know because they only eat Mac & Cheese. Follow Lou on Twitter @blotzphoto or check out his photography at

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