07/31/2012 09:33 am ET

Parenthesis: The Best Of The Mom And Dad Blogs This Week

This week in Parenthesis, The Didactic Pirate's daughter asks about Gay Pride, Tanis Miller gets worn out driving her kids to camp, Lenore Skenazy shares a summer safety quiz -- and more.

Summer travelogue
If parent blogs were magazines, Jim Griffieon’s Sweet Juniper would be the civilized literary quarterly, with long, thoughtful installments worth saving for your Sunday coffee hour. His sweet travelogue about his family’s trip to northern Michigan (complete with a dog and a lizard named Mason who “kind of looks like a sleepy octogenarian and he devotes 90 percent of his limited energy to hiding from sunlight and tiny, sticky fingers”) is everything you wish you wrote each time your family went on vacation.

It’s always cheaper to pay more
This summer, Tanis Miller opted to send her kids to day camps. “Somehow,” she writes on Attack of the Redneck Mommy, “months ago, I told myself I wouldn’t mind driving to the big city twice a day, every day for several consecutive weeks because it was for my kids” (and part of “an effort to save money”).

The verdict? “I must have been huffing sunscreen fumes.” Miller writes that she spends more than four hours daily on drop-off and pick-up duties, and doesn’t appreciate the extra stress (and in-car arguments) her daily routine has brought. On top of it all, of course, she’s “spending more on gas than I would have if I had just ponied up for a sleep away camp.” Looks like her kids will have their pick of sleep away adventures in summer 2013.

“So… what’s Gay Pride actually about again?”
DadCentric blogger The Didactic Pirate has already blogged movingly about the experience of coming out to his 10-year-old daughter. Now, he's written about another moment of father-daughter explication -- this one occasioned by the recent Gay Pride weekend in San Diego. “I have yet to tell Mini-P about how our society has treated gay people in the past,” he writes, adding: “I’d like her to keep on thinking that there’s really nothing unusual about being gay, that there’s nothing left-of-center about it at all” so that she doesn’t “worry that someone will do something mean to her dad.” While he knows “she’ll find out on her own” eventually, for now, he’s happy not to dive too deep into specifics; it’s enough for him that (in her words) she’s proud “to have a gay person in MY life.”

“Touch your child’s wrist at all times to check for a pulse”
Parents -- even “free-range” ones -- want their kids to be safe. But in her role as watchdog over all things risk-averse, Lenore Skenazy makes a point of calling it like she sees it when people and news organizations go overboard with their warnings and scaremongering. In a “quiz” she wrote for The Washington Post and recently reposted on her blog, she compares real tips from “actual parenting resources” to made-up pseudo-tips. While it’s mostly clear when she’s joking around, some of the tips might make you scratch your head, for example:

24. Serve only bran-based desserts.

29. Stay away from very cold drinks -- they can cause cramps.

To find out which is real and which is fake, visit her blog.



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