Emily Guy Birken

Emily Guy Birken is a freelance writer, a stay-at-home-mom, and a recovering English teacher. She lives in Lafayette, Indiana with her mechanical engineer husband and toddler son. Her musings on life and parenting can be found at The SAHMnambulist. She also blogs about the funny side of money at Live Like a Mensch.

Sometimes Moms Say the Darndest Things, Too

We can all agree that sometimes kids say the darndest things. There have even been entire shows devoted to that. BUT. Kids are not the only ones who say the darndest things. Moms do too. And probably dads. And maybe grandmas, grandpas, teachers, aunts and uncles anyone who has to deal with kids on a regular basis. ...more
I read this while eating my lunch, and "Apparently my kids need to know we are NOT a family of ...more

When Will I Stop Watching Them Breathe While They Sleep?

When I was a teenager, I babysat for a family who lost their youngest child to SIDS. I didn't know anything about SIDS, but knew that this family had put their healthy infant son to bed one night and he never woke up. It was terribly hard on the family, their lives altered and filled with grief in an instant. As their regular babysitter, it affected me too. I became hyper-vigilant for a long time after, afraid that any of the young children who I babysat would suddenly stop breathing in their sleep. ...more
I could see myself as an 85-year-old and have my 50-something son (currently a 3-year-old) visit ...more

How Young Is Too Young to Trick-or-Treat? Do I Have to Give Your Baby Candy?

Last Halloween, a parent with an infant strapped to her chest came to my door asking for candy. I leaned around her, looking perhaps for a toddler or preschooler, but no other kids were in sight -- just her and her two-month-old. Call me crazy, but in my experience babies too young to hold their heads up shouldn’t eat Tootsie Rolls. ...more
The only time I was over offended at a trick-or-treater was when a full grown adult woman with ...more

Sharon Day: Burdening Women With Misleading Information About ObamaCare

I’d like to take a moment to address the false and misleading claims made by Sharon Day in her BlogHer.com post ObamaCare: Burdening Women. If one reads through quickly, it seems as if ObamaCare, officially known as the Affordable Care Act, has decimated families across the country. Day makes it seem as though women are having their health insurance stripped away and that these women are now going to have to pay exorbitant amounts for healthcare coverage if they want it back....more
Thanks for writing this.more

When "Pulling a Mama" Means Swearing... A Lot

Yeah, so, I swear. I have a potty mouth. I use foul language. I’m inappropriate. I say naughty words. I curse....more
My husband and I also both have potty mouths. We have unofficially decided that our house rule ...more

America's Not Here for Us

"Mom-are we still slaves? Do people still hate us, African-Americans?"...more
Thank you for this passionate, heartfelt piece. As a white mother of a white son, I know that I ...more

Waiting to Get Pregnant and the Reality of Infertility

The infertility community is watching the push-back over Jean Twenge's article in the Atlantic unfold with a whiff of amusement.  There's Margaret Wheeler Johnson from Huffington Post questioning whether the whole article was just a matter of giving women what they wanted to hear vs. the truth.  Or Amy Klein in the New York Times pointing out that getting pregnant isn't the same thing as giving birth.  And then there's us, the women who landed on the wrong side of that 82%, who are infertile and find these articles about how long you can wait pointless: you simply don't know if you will be in the 82% or the 18% until you start trying to conceive.  And what are you going to do if you find yourself with that infertility diagnosis where your age really does matter when it comes to success rates? ...more
I read the Atlantic piece with great interest, because I was told in my teens that I would ...more

Do French Kids Really Eat Everything? Find Out How I Made Mealtime Fun Again

Have you read French Kids Eat Everything yet? It's already a game changer for us. With how much I talk (read: gloat) about feeding my kids real food, it might surprise you I have a lot to learn about teaching kids to eat well. Yes, I usually manage to get my kids to eat healthy food, BUT I have come to dread mealtime due to their whininess, messiness, disregard for normal decibel levels and decent personal space, and sibling rivalry that accompany every meal. I was becoming a cross between a hair-raising psycho and a punch-drunk lunatic at dinner, getting into immature discussions with my kids about who was going to get the purple plate and which child would be allowed to sing the third verse of the rainbow song. ...more
Would you have been willing to try this rules and tips when your children were younger? My 2 and ...more

5 Reasons I Won't Make "Kid Food" for Dinner

Top Five Reasons I don't make "kid food" It costs additional time and money to prepare multiple entrées. All the food we eat is suitable for children. My job as a parent is to teach my child how to become an adult. "Kid Foods" are often not the healthiest options It is my kitchen and I don't want to!...more
I have a picky(ish) eater. Since he's also a delayed talker, I'm finding I'm much more lenient ...more

17 Gifts for Grammar Geeks

You probably have someone on your list who will probably never lay (and definitely never lie) down her red pen. Punctuate her holidays with an editor-approved grammar gift guide; you can choose for yourself whether to sign it "Santa Clause." ...more
I'm late to this grammar party, but I wanted to share the fact that when I was teaching high ...more