Month: October 2012

“Why Have Kids? A New Mom Explores the Truth About Parenting and Happiness” by Jessica Valenti

“Why Have Kids? A New Mom Explores the Truth About Parenting and Happiness” by Jessica Valenti  (performed in audio by Emily Beresford) c.2012, New Harvest, $23.00, 179 pages c.2012, Brilliance Audio, $29.99, 5CDs / 5h 20m BOOK REVIEW by TERRI SCHLICHENMEYER Your former classmate leads such an interesting life. She told you this summer about the trips she took recently: Aruba, Paris, Johannesburg, Tokyo. She waves perfectly manicured hands as she describes partying all night, leisurely meals, Sundays with an unspoiled newspaper, and a fun job, unencumbered. You hate her. Yes, you love your kids. But would you choose parenthood again if you had a second chance? That’s one of the intriguing questions in “Why Have Kids?” by Jessica Valenti. Two days after she toured a New York hospital’s maternity center, Jessica Valenti gave birth, two months early. It was not what she had in mind when she made her birth plan and once her daughter came home, parenting wasn’t what she imagined. There were no blissful bonding times for Valenti and her daughter. No Madonna-like baby-at-the-breast scenarios and no Fierce Mama moments. Valenti says she loved her child, but not like she figured she “should.” Things got better eventually, but not before Valenti realized that parenting “needs a paradigm shift.” The ideal that’s been long-touted is nowhere near reality and “that disconnect is making us miserable.” Children, she...

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First responders honored for bravery

Three Keizer men were honored for bravery in the line of duty. Two are Keizer Police officers, while the third is a firefighter for the Salem Fire Department. They received the Professional Rescue Real Hero awards from the Willamette Chapter of the American Red Cross. Brent Durschmidt, was honored along with Capt. Gary West, Firefighter John Merrick and Engineer Chuck Ettel for bringing a family of four, including two young children, to safety in an apartment fire in Salem last December. Merrick was one of the first on scene to an apartment fire Dec. 16, 2011, grabbed a ladder and was able to pull a child through a second-story window. Merrick was unable to fit through the window, so he broke it, removed the frame, allowing Durschmidt to squeeze through. He discovered the father, clutching his child in the bathtub. Trying to pull the child free, the father’s instinct was to hold on. Durschmidt said a quick prayer and finally pulled the child loose and handed her off to another firefighter. Meanwhile, West and Ettel found the unconscious mother in another room. Durschmidt pulled the now-unconscious father out of the building and to Merrick, who began resuscitation efforts. From Keizer Police, Sgt. Andrew Copeland and Officer Rodney Bamford were both honored for their efforts pulling a man out of a car with flames threatening nearby. Paramedic Supervisor Mike Harness...

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