You're getting your weekend reading post a day early this week because I have it ready, and because I have a strong suspicion that Petunia is getting sick again, so blogging will probably not be in the cards tomorrow night.
This week, Liz at Mom-101had two excellent posts on working moms. Her first was about how lonely and hard it can be to be both a mom and the main breadwinner in your family. I'm not in that exact situation- I make more than Hubby, but his salary could have supported us if we'd made some different choices (particularly about housing). But still, her post resonated with me, because now that we have made the choices we made, my salary is not optional, and this meant that I had to make some decisions in my most recent job search that were not necessarily what I would have chosen if I had a little more flexibility. (Wow, that was a long-winded way to say not much. But my current thoughts on my career are complicated, and warrant a post of their own. Which is on the to do list.)
Anyway, the second post was on the things that she doesn't do- because no one really does it all. Read the comments, too, on that one, to see how much those of us who get asked all the time "how do you do it all?" really aren't doing. As I said in my comment there, and have said here before- parenthood is a big filter on your life that will show you what is really important to you, because those are the things you'll keep doing. Also, I loved the point one of the comments made, that there is a difference between having it all and doing it all. I don't think you can do it all, but on good days, I feel like I do have it all- or at least all of "it" that I really want.
Ginger over at Ramble, Ramble had an interesting post on this topic, too. It is nice to see an honest, respectful conversation about the truths of being a working mom going on- so far, none of these posts has been overrun with "mommy war" type comments.
I also came across two sciencey sleep articles, which caught my attention because sleep has been in short supply around here lately. First, badmomgoodmom sent me a link to a summary of a twin study on sleep. The general idea in a twin study is to look at a set of traits or behaviors and compare the differences seen in fraternal twins with the differences seen in identical twins. If the differences are bigger in fraternal twins, then the data support a hypothesis that the traits or behaviors have a genetic component. Through a bunch of statistics, the researchers can even estimate the portion of the trait or behavior that is under genetic control. According to the summary, this study found that genes play no role in whether or not the families are co-sleeping, and only a partial role in other sleep behaviors. I have a problem with the conclusions as described in this short summary, because I think that a twin study is not actually going to be a good way to tease apart genetic and environmental influences on co-sleeping. I suspect that if one twin has some sort of genetic sleep issue that leads the parents to decide to co-sleep, they will probably co-sleep with both twins, and not just the twin with the issue. So the data would not show a genetic difference even if one existed. Unfortunately, I can't access the original article without paying for it, and I wasn't curious enough to pay to see if the authors attempted to address this issue- because I also don't think co-sleeping is a "problem" that needs solving.
The other sleep article is from Gwen Dewar, of Parenting Science. She has an interesting post up about the "sleeping through the night" milestone, arguing that it is a cultural construct and not a biological imperative. I've posted at length about the sleep issues in our house and how I eventually learned to think of them as my sleep issues, not my kids' sleep issues- neither of my children has ever shown any indication of being sleep deprived. Just me and Hubby do! So I found her perspective interesting.
I have one other random article to recommend: the article about how Peter Thiel, founder of PayPal, thinks that we're in a higher education bubble. I don't agree with all of his conclusions (he would say that is because I'm in the elite who is threatened by those conclusions), but it is an interesting read.
And finally, this video was so funny that I laughed until I cried. (Fair warning, though- you probably don't want to watch it at work, and you certainly don't want to watch it with any kids around.)
(As usual, credit to Hubby for finding the funny stuff online.)