Parenting in 5 Easy Steps (and Day 2 of 7 Giveaways)

After 15 years as a parent (or 54 years of concurrent parenting, which MUCH more accurately explains my exhaustion and the incessant twitch in my left eye), I have one piece of parenting advice to offer.

ONE piece of really, really, ridiculously GOOD parenting advice, if I do say so myself.

It’s this:

ALWAYS do the Right Thing.
Until it doesn’t work anymore.
Then do the Next Right Thing.

That’s right.

That’s parenting gold right there.

Always do the Right Thing, folks!

Until it doesn’t work anymore. Then do the Next Right Thing.

For example, breastfeeding is the Right Thing. Do it! Until it’s not the Right Thing. Then do the Next Right Thing.

Also, public school is the Right Thing. Send your kids there! Until it’s not the Right Thing. Then do the Next Right Thing.

Except, you know, if you’re like me and you aren’t always sure what the Right Thing is, in which case I urge you to do Something. Something With the Very Best Intentions!

Which may turn out to be the Wrong Thing.

But as soon as you figure out it’s the Wrong Thing, you can do Something Else. True story!

Which (shhhhh) may ALSO be the Wrong Thing.

OR it’ll be a step closer to the Right Thing!

Or it may even be THE Right Thing.


Now, sure, it may be THE Right Thing for only a Little While, but a Right Thing for a Little While is better than a Right Thing for NO TIME AT ALL, right? RIGHT? Right.

Then again, if you’re Super Duper Extra Lucky, you might discover a Right Thing that lasts a LONG While.


Of course — big bummer 🙁 — it will almost certainly not be the Right Thing Forever, because the Right Way to Parent Forever is the big, giant Unicorn of Parenting; it’s a gorgeous fantasy, but good luck finding one on your next walk through the forest, you know?

So, to summarize my Very Best Parenting Advice, I present to you:

Parenting in 5 Easy Steps

photo (4).PNG


This is why I don’t write parenting advice books. They’d be very, VERY short. More of a parenting pamphlet, really. 

My friend, Susan Heid, however, does! Which leads me to today’s giveaway.

Today is Day 2 of 7 Giveaways!

I invited the 5 Kids Blog advertisers (see the column to your right) to join me for 7 (or more!) days of giveaways. CHECK BACK for a NEW GIVEAWAY EVERY DAY.

In her book, Become the Confident Mom You’ve Always Wanted to Be: 31 Strategies to Improve Your Confidence as a Woman, Mother, and Family Manager, author and parent coach Susan Heid explains how using these 31 essential strategies can help you guide your family with love, faith, a positive outlook, and confidence. This will help you achieve a more fulfilling family atmosphere and prepare your children to positively maneuver through life’s many opportunities and challenges.


Today, Susan Heid of The Confident Mom is giving away 5 Kindle copies of Become the Confident Mom You’ve Always Wanted to Be

This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to our book winners:

Maria K
Brandi P
Beth G
Bryanna Henry

TO ENTER: Leave a comment on this blog post by 11:59pm (Pacific Time) on Monday, December 16th. One entry per person, please. Winners will be selected using a random number generator and posted on Monday.


Note: The 5 Kids Blog advertisers provided no additional compensation for these giveaways. Susan Heid is paying for the cost of the giveaway. She paid me for her ad only, and this just seemed like a fun way to work together for your benefit. OK? OK.


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38 responses to “Parenting in 5 Easy Steps (and Day 2 of 7 Giveaways)”

  1. And don’t fling your rightness around because you never know when it will no longer be the right thing. Or if it’s the rightness for any other family.

  2. This is on my FB page now:
    “Parenting Advice from
    I don’t agree with everything she says (that would be weird) but I do like this advice. And this advice can be applied to things besides parenting.

  3. Okay so I’ve only been at this for 13 concurrent yrs so this advice is perfect! I love the idea of always doing the right thing until its not right anymore and with three very different kids I’m always changing and often doing things with good intentions until I find the right thing. I could certainly use more confidence in my ability to do the right thing for each one of my kiddos 🙂 Thanks for writing such an honest blog!

  4. 34 concurrent years here, and loving it! I’m pretty confident that I am doing the right thing, until it stops working. Very hard to let go of the right thing – even if it isn’t anymore! So, I need to be a little less “confident” that I’m right, and a little more ready to be the mom I want to be.

  5. Like the part about trying something with good intensions. It is easy to fall into the trap of doing nothing when you dont know what the “right” thing is.

  6. Well, our kids are well into their 30s (with one approaching his 40s) but I sometimes feel like we’re starting off in the parenting world again as we help take care of our toddler granddaughter. This whole “blogging world” didn’t exist, of course, when we were parents of “children” so I’ve had a great time with the mommy-blogs. Love reading yours. And @Nurse Bee — if you’ve got a computer or a cell-phone, the odds are pretty good there’s a free kindle app for reading kindle books. My real kindle cacked only a year after I got it, but no worries since it’s just as easy to read on the phone and you always have that with you!

  7. Your five easy steps works for me! More confidence, less guilt. I’d say with 54 years of concurrent parenting, that you’ve got it done pat, Beth!

  8. I only have seven years of concurrent parenting three boys so far. I need all the advice I can get! I love this idea of do this right thing until it isn’t right. I’ve noticed that our parenting style is forever changing (I use forever loosely – I realize my eldest is only four!)as our children are forever changing.

  9. First, I love this advice. I just came home from drinks with my moms group that formed when our now five year olds were five weeks old. We are all awash with concerns and anxiety about our recent or pending decisions about where the kids will go for elementary school. Coming home to this advice was perfect and just what I needed.
    Second, even though we haven’t met and I haven’t even sent you the e-mail I keep meaning to write introducing myself, I’m kind of totally excited that you’re in San Francisco, because it’s my ‘hood.
    Third, you’ve got yourself a T-shirt design right there, with that parenting advice. Or possibly a poster. Or a needle point sampler. Or something. That is just crying out to be in the Five Kids store.

  10. This is totally RAD!! Although I feel as though the best I do is Something with the Very Best Intentions…I can’t wait until that becomes The Right Thing at least once!! But I’m only 12 years in with 19 years concurrent experience…just wet behind the ears in comparison! But that is still a LOT of kids!!

  11. Always nice to read your blog after a long week! (don’t enter me in the giveaway, sounds like an awesome book, but I don’t have an e-reader).

  12. You forgot one part… If you find the right thing and it works really really good, it’s 100% guaranteed that that right thing will be the TOTALLY wrong thing if applied to a different child.

    I just wanted to comment on this one, not to enter the drawing for the book. You see, I’ve been parenting for 100 concurrent years and am almost done as my tiny baby is 16. Unless the book can tell me how to gain back the mirage of total control and/or how to turn her back to 2, I think I’m about as good as I can be as far as confidence goes…

    Also OMG!!!! 100 YEARS of concurrent parenting??? I’ve never thought of it like that before – NEVER. No WONDER I’m so tired…

    P.S. – do you know that I STILL almost always type my name like that – only on replies to this blog. And when I accidentally type it correctly, I correct it. LOL

  13. You make it sound so easy, but we all know there is a sub-list that says, “try not to pull out your hair” and “resist the urge to poke out your own eyeballs”

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