Stepping on Cheerios: mom reality and a realistic review

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Stepping on Cheerios by  Betsy Singleton  Snyder surprised me.  There were quite a few tidbits I walked away with as great reminders of what I can or need to do in motherhood. I chuckled under my breath and shared some stories with people around me. Overall it was a somewhat enjoyable read – a lot of the concepts were ones I’ve heard before in other formats or forums; but I did enjoy the refresher and encouragement  from a mom in a similar stage of life.  I also appreciated that given Snyder’s life story her experience was shared through the lens of a different perspective, becoming a mom later in life and having triplets made for a very different experience in a similar life stage to my own.

Honestly, for me, these lessons have been best learned in a small group with other moms swapping stories in a safe and transparent environment. However, I realize that many moms don’t have that kind of community and this book could totally provide a sense of belonging  right when and where they need it.

Snyder did a nice job of sharing realistic stories of herself parenting four boys within a few short years and the chaos that ensued. I can completely relate –  although her story of becoming a mom later in life and having triplets is quite logistically different.  I also appreciated that she really tried to tie in Scripture and strong Biblical principles.

However, there were moments where I thought this was done in a strange way or where she was trying too hard to connect current culture and the historical context.  I felt these strange cultural references just were not necessary. For example the reference to “putting a ring on it” in the prodigal son story or  comparing our view of God to a woman “wandering around target” just didn’t do it for me, in fact they were a bit distracting.

Taking the truth of God’s words and the stories of the Bible and using current cultural examples to bring fresh and new understanding to those truths can be a powerful tool in planting His principles deep within our hearts. In this particular case I felt that the way the author paralleled certain Biblical passages to modern day examples did nothing to enhance the truth of them, rather than aid in expanding understanding they fell somewhat flat, watering down the beauty of the truth rather than enhancing it.

That being said the book itself is one many moms need.  The feeling of being alone, lost, questioning and isolated are some of the serious struggles of motherhood especially with parenting really little ones. This book will provide an awesome sense of community and understanding to moms who might not otherwise have it.

I asked some moms in my community to share photos of their lives that correlated with the concepts in Stepping on Cheerios  and it didn’t take much for them to provide photos that directly reflected all that Snyder covered in her story.

Legos teaching us to stop, play, create, slow down, and enjoy.

Cooking with kids in the kitchen, whether it be a pie crust from scratch or a peanut butter and mustard seed sandwich.

“The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed…” Matthew 13:31-33

Lives littered with lessons and messes and a lot of love.

I saw that a lot of these correlations with moms of boys were especially strong. Not to say that moms of girls do not deal with similar things, but there is something to say for parenting children of the opposite gender in the way that their brains are just a bit more foreign to us moms.

Realizing that there are two sides to every coin and how we will parent and respond is different than how our spouse will. Or how we do it is different than how another mom may choose to do it… That’s OK! And realistically it takes a village to raise children – embrace those differences and use them with your own children. It can be a chance for someone else’s strength to fill in your weakness. This hit me hard  last year and I shared more about it here.

I love the Scripture references at the beginning of each chapter, and found the overall topics of each section very pertinent to my life as a mom. I will warn you that sometimes the anecdotes are a little disjointed and there definitely isn’t a flow from start to finish. Really you could pick up this book and read a chapter at a time and not need to have read before or after it… Sometimes that’s a nice thing, especially for us busy moms, but I just wanted to give you the heads up that sometimes the storyline of this book is not completely linear… Think it reflects her mom brain and the real life of a mom? I do!

I received a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

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