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Simplicity Parenting: Using the Extraordinary Power of Less to Raise Calmer, Happier, and More Secure Kids Paperback – 15 Sep 2010


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Product details

  • Paperback: 235 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books Inc. (15 Sept. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345507983
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345507983
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 1.3 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 19,614 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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53 of 55 people found the following review helpful By Dr. K. E. Patrick TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 31 May 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Payne and Ross have done something in this book that all books about simplifying or minimalizing our lives should do: they don't just dissect ways to de-clutter our homes in a guilt-producing, over-taxing sermon, but instead, gently point out the whole gamut of ways that our lives our over-cluttered.

Our time, our routines, our meals, our clothes and books and toys -- all the over-committed, over-burdened ways we have stretched our lives are having a negative impact on our peace, and even worse, on our children's peace.

They liken it to Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome, created not by a single shocking incident, but by a slow, insidious drip of heightened stressors.

That old story about the frog being heated up in a pan of water ...

Coming from a Steiner background, Payne really makes a lot of sensible observations about how children play when their toys are fewer, their books are carefully chosen, their clothing is limited; how much easier life can be made with a menu plan; how much calmer when there are blank spaces on the daily calendar.

It was a meaty book without being smug or preachy or padded, and probably is my favourite book so far this year. Highly recommended.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Mary on 23 Jan. 2011
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I really enjoyed this book. If you are a busy parent and you want to slow down and really enjoy your children, it is a good book to read. It talks about decluttering childrens rooms and the less toys the better. Too much TV and computer games are not good, so if you are not prepared to cut back on tv and computer games, it's not for you or maybe it is, as it will explain how this can really improve your family life.
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24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Jacqui on 10 July 2011
Format: Paperback
I came across this book by chance when another Amazon customer mentioned it in a review of a different title. I love it! I really like the writing style: it's informative, encouraging, sensible but not at all 'preachy'. I haven't yet tried out all of the things it suggests, but did do a MAJOR clear out of the kids' playroom nearly a month ago, just leaving a few games and well-loved toys (I stored the stuff elsewhere and have given them the option of swapping things in and out, but they haven't wanted to do that yet). The change has been remarkable. They are much calmer, playing together (and with me) much more frequently, they can see what they have to play with and choose to play games rather than blob in front of the telly, they're keen to keep the room tidier... Basically, all of us feel much calmer. I wish I'd read it when I was pregnant and never got into the pattern of buying too much stuff, feeling that they always need to have things to do / be entertained etc.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Caroline Derman on 7 Feb. 2012
Format: Paperback
I cannot put this book down - it is one of the most useful and helpful parenting books I have read. My only regret is that I did not read this book when my children were younger - would have saved a lot of money on tons of books and toys which provided 5 minutes of entertainment at best. The book makes wonderful suggestions for building a lifestyle to allow your children to flourish in the critical period of childhood. I think this should be required reading for all parents
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Clara Luna on 24 Feb. 2011
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What I liked the most about this book is how it raises awareness among parents of how complex our lives have become and how that is affecting our children. Too many screens, to much time spent on the Internet, the TV, texting people, expecting phone calls, e-mails, having to keep up with the latest news and the latest consumption demands, all of this is just turning everyone into extremely anxious stressed heads. The beauty of this book is making us aware of this very modern phenomenon and giving parents sound advice and tips on how to create moments of peace and relaxation for both themselves and their children. It highlights the importance of creating a calming environment within the family so all the busyness and bustle of the outside world doesn't get into the souls and minds of our little ones. This book is about protecting and cherishing childhood rather than bombarding it with all the demands of the modern world. I fully recommend it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. Holland on 18 Sept. 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a great book that states what a lot of people have been talking about for some time, that children need less not more material things, and it tells you how to reduce your / your childrens dependence on 'stuff' and the improvement that you will see in your family life.

We have started to follow some of the recommendations and if is def working for us.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr Susan Buchanan on 14 Aug. 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This has been much recommended to me as an aide to decluttering and simplifying my life and implementing these principles in my parenting. I agree with almost every word the author wrote. Some of the examples of non-simplicity parenting were pretty extreme and I suspect would apply more in America than the UK, for example children suffering from repetitive strain injury from participating in sports to a near professional standard. This is not something I have come across but perhaps it does go on in certain circles. This is a minor point though. In the UK we can certainly be guilty of toy and activity overload and the book counsels strongly against these and provides some scientific and some common sense reasons for adopting his view. It is well written and passionate and the author is clearly a hands on parent who understands the challenges of keeping young children amused. It has changed my practice re buying toys and books as well as reinforcing my constant drive to keep screen time to a minimum.
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