Family matters

Welcome to RN&R’s first Family Guide

Kids are kind of like Subarus. You never really notice them until you have one, and then … they’re everywhere. I had my first—child, that is—a year ago, and have spent the following months learning the realities of parenting clichés: the pain of labor being something so worth it you’d gladly do it again, the almost overwhelming, new kind of love you feel for this little person, the worrying, the exhaustion, the pride, the joy, and the sudden realization that life as you know it will truly never be the same.

One of the best surprises about parenthood has been the support of other moms and dads, complete strangers sometimes. People who have nothing in common with each other can always talk about their kids. A New York Times story in January told of how the lactation rooms in the U.S. Capitol were one of the few places where partisan politics were absent from the building, as Republican and Democratic moms talked to each other about Timmy’s high chair antics or Molly’s first tooth.

That shared support comes from a place of empathy: Moms and dads understand the sleepless nights, the frustrations, the occasional fits of tears—both yours and baby’s—that can occur just days after becoming a parent. So I am more than happy to relate any insight I may have accumulated in the short time I’ve been a parent, and I’ve found most other parents are similarly eager to share. The other thing I’ve learned, however, is that no parent and no child is exactly the same. What works for one, won’t necessarily work for the other, but other people’s experiences can help you figure it out.

So I was thrilled when Reno News & Review decided to publish this, its first Family Guide. We plan to publish three of them this year—the other two coming out this summer and fall—so parents can find new ideas and information throughout the seasons. In this one, we take you from age 0 through the teen years, from Sharon Black’s funny and bittersweet story of life as a new mom with twins to Susan Winters’ story of driving with teens without driving yourself crazy. In between are some family-friendly suggestions for what to do with your kids this spring in Reno.

From our home to yours, enjoy.