3 Parenting Books I Swear By

If you’re a parent like me, then you’re probably on the rollercoaster ride of parenthood complete with the complimentary photo of your terrified face on the 141 foot drop. It’s no secret there’s no handbook for this wild adventure. While there’s no one-size-fits-all guide, I’ve discovered that parenting is not just about teaching our children; it’s first and foremost about re-parenting ourselves. We can’t show up as the parents we’d like to be without doing the WORK. And oh my goodness, it is work. But it’s always worthwhile. And the good news is, we live in an era where we’re lucky to have a wealth of knowledge from experts, doctors and specialists at our fingertips. Whether it’s through books and podcasts, there’s no excuse for us to be stuck in old ways and methods of parenting!

Today I’m sharing my top three parenting books, some of the best parenting books (for me!) that have been my trusty go-to’s on this crazy ride raising my kids and re-parenting myself.

Good Inside by Dr. Becky Kennedy

If I had to give you one podcast to listen to, it would be Dr. Becky Kennedy’s “Good Inside”. Dr. Becky’s advice was game-changing for me as she was one the first clinical psychologists in the family arena that really introduced me to other ideas and methods of parenting. Her scripts and insights are so helpful on the podcast and I decided to buy her book “Good Inside”. I use it a lot for referencing and reading up on my children’s stages and behaviors. It’s an exploration of emotional intelligence with engaging stories and practical exercises. It provides me with a roadmap for helping my children understand and express their emotions more effectively. Overall, this book is always within my reach and equips parents, educators and caregivers with the tools to nurture emotional well-being in children and create stronger, more empathetic connections. It’s a MUST!

The Artist’s Way for Parents by Julia Cameron and Emma Lively

The Artist’s Way for Parents is actually an adaptation of Julia Cameron’s original book The Artist’s Way, a groundbreaking book that serves as a creative bible for artists and individuals wanting to tap into their creative potential. The guidance in the original The Artist’s Way, includes the famous “morning pages” and it’s all about the transformative journey to overcome creative blocks and unleash your artistic spirit. When Julia’s daughter had a child, she decided to create the adaptation for parents. And it’s yet another book I always love to open to any given page and read every weekend morning, often with my husband Rodrigo! It has given us a lot of ideas of how to approach every day topics in family life creatively. How to cultivate creativity with our children through seemingly mundane things. It also gives you a ton of guidance and perspective on important themes like money but always with a focus on nurturing creativity in children and parents alike. I love the practical tools and exercises to help families foster a creative environment while exploring the joys of artistic expression. We love it!

Unpunished by Michelle Kenney

Michelle Kenney also has an awesome parenting podcast and that’s where I found out about her book “Unpunished”. My tendency to snap and raise my voice at my kids is totally learned from defense mechanisms throughout my life and also experiencing some of that “alert-based” existence as a child. I am really committed – and have come a long way already! – to breaking that cycle of operating from a place of fear and replace it with operating from a place of respect, love and firm/safe boundaries. “Unpunished” really resonates with me because Michelle recounts her experience as a mother who fell into all the same pitfalls as I do and did. This book really helped me feel seen and inspired to learn how to crack open those learned habits and address underlying triggers coming up for me. I really recommend it if you also see that you have a tendency to reactive parenting!

If you have any other book or podcast suggestions I would LOVE to know, please leave it in a comment below! I am always open to learning and we all need resources to help guide us along the journey of parenthood!

Thanks for reading along with me, catch up with me over on the ‘Gram! x


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A little about me…

Hello there! I’m Ana Free, s’nice to meet you! Thanks for stopping by my lifestyle and mommy blog! I’m mama to a gorgeous baby girl called Zoe as well as a four-legged rescue pooch called Indie and wifey to an Argentinian music producer hunk by the name of Rodrigo (but since that’s too long I always call him Rod haha). I love music, writing and singing songs, traveling, doing my makeup, taking photographs and spending time with my family. The craziest thing I’ve ever done is skydive and the most embarrassing was probably when I peed in protest on the floor in ballet as a child because the teacher wouldn’t let me go to the bathroom (seriously, when a 6 year old says they need to go, you gotta let ’em)!

As with most creatives, it seems I have a million and one passions and this space is where I get to write, share, ramble and post whatever comes to mind in my world. It’s really just all things casual, travels, mama+baby, fashion, makeup, style and me.