updated 4/5/2011 9:17:08 AM ET 2011-04-05T13:17:08

Author Meagan Francis and Editors of Parenting Offer Confidence-Boosting Advice to Help Moms Reclaim the Fun of Parenting

SAN FRANCISCO, April 5, 2011 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The Year of the Tiger Mom swept in on a tide of debate over strict, tough-love-style parenting.

Enter the "Happy Moms" – a cultural phenomenon that serves as an antidote to over-stressed, highly disciplined, rigid parenting.

Did you know that, on average, parents are 7 percent less content than their childless peers? Many parents report that they feel happier grocery shopping than hanging out with their children. There are a lot of moms out there who love their kids, but don't really love their lives.  The good news?  There are simple strategies that can make a mom's life more relaxed and rewarding – kids, commitments, and all.

At the forefront of the "Happy Mom" movement is Meagan Francis, author, with the editors of Parenting magazine, of The Happiest Mom: 10 secrets to enjoying motherhood, a book that from the very first chapter, teaches moms to relax, trust their instincts, cultivate self-confidence in their parenting, and grow happier in the process.

"We need to give ourselves a break when one of our kids is running a few minutes late or something gets overlooked," Francis emphasizes in an early chapter.

The book uses real-life, "from the frontlines" stories of moms in step-by-step chapters, that lay out the secrets for regaining equilibrium and happiness as a mom:

  • Most important is Chapter 1: Take the Easy Way Out, where Francis makes a light-hearted, but heartfelt case for giving yourself a break. "Remember that just because it's technically possible for us to pull off something…doesn't mean that we should. It's part of that Supermom myth that I'd like to throw in the Diaper Genie."
  • Chapter 2: Aim Low and Go Slow encourages compassion – for your own parenting skills and those of other moms. "A knowing smile is sometimes all it takes to help another mom feel understood," Francis writes, "and I bet she'll grant you the same favor next time it's your little one who rips off her diaper and puts it on her head at the playground."
  • Trust Your Gut is the advice in Chapter 3. Sure, the number of parenting gurus out there is expanding by the day, Francis notes, but "you are the #1 expert on your child!" Cultivating confidence in your own parenting makes for the happiest moms, she believes, and for happier families.
  • Chapters 7 and 8 – Make Your Bed and Have a Plan – are all about setting goals that reflect your priorities and creating strategies "to help busy moms make sure their best-laid plans don't melt like yesterday's Popsicle."

Short sidebars relay additional real examples from moms and the editors of Parenting and include:

  •  "Mom to Mom" anecdotes
  •  Quizzes to help pinpoint parenting strengths
  •  "Did You Know?" insights from Parenting
  •  "Easy Jump Start" tips for saying no, separating unimportant tasks from the vital, and making a mom's life easier

Francis also incorporates results from Parenting's "Mood of Moms" study of more than 1,000 mothers, conducted by the MomConnection research network, and discusses some of the surprising things they had to report about 60 different factors that are key to a mom's happiness.

After all, Francis says, "knowledge is power, but the ability to roll with the punches and listen to your gut is the path to successful – and happy – motherhood."

To set up an author interview or to request a review copy of The Happiest Mom, please email andrea@andreaburnett.com.

About the Author:

Meagan Francis (St. Joseph, MI) is a parenting author, blogger, and columnist who is a contributor to Parenting, Yahoo! Shine, Babble.com, and The New York Times' Motherlode blog. She has been featured in interviews on NBC, MSNBC, and in the Sunday Styles section of The New York Times, and quoted in publications including Woman's Day, The Seattle Times, Chicago Sun-Times, and more. Francis has been invited to speak at writers' conferences like the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and was asked by Yahoo! executives to participate as a member of Yahoo!'s Motherboard, a small group of influential mom bloggers. She posts frequently at her popular blog, TheHappiestMom.com.

The Happiest Mom

Paperback: 144 pages

Weldon Owen

ISBN-13: 978-1616280604

8.2 x 6.2 x 0.5 inches

Pub Date: April 5, 2011

$14.95

www.weldonowen.com

Contact: Andrea Burnett

Andrea Burnett PR

650.207.0917

Andrea@andreaburnett.com

Thehappiestmom.com

About Weldon Owen

Over the past 25 years, Weldon Owen has built a solid reputation as a leading creator of illustrated nonfiction books, while becoming accomplished at creating and publishing branded books for major national brands and retailers. It creates and publishes more than 60 trade titles each year.  One specialty is its lauded cookbooks, which number more than 300 titles, with over 30 million copies sold. Most have been produced for Williams-Sonoma through an 18-year alliance. Other partners include Kellogg's, Danny Meyer's Union Square Hospitality Group and Bonnier's Saveur  Magazine. Weldon Owen's visual reference unit has produced both children's titles and family/adult reference books and series. Partners for this include major retailers such as Pottery Barn, PB Kids, The Body Shop, 3M Post-it Notes, Hallmark, Gymboree and Bonnier's Parenting magazine. Based in San Francisco, Weldon Owen was founded in 1986.

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