Let’s all grab our sippy cups and welcome Meredith Peters Hale as today’s Wednesday’s Guest. She is the author of the humorous look at motherhood, Mommy A to Z: An Encyclopedia of the Joys, Wonders, and Absurdities of Motherhood, which I reviewed last Sunday. The point of the sippy cup will become clear as you read the fun interview with the author, conducted by her children, and you can put the beverage of choice in your cup. Mine will have coffee, and as you can see, I have a tippy cup, which is what I remember calling a sippy cup when my children were young. But that was so long ago, who can trust my memory?
While Meredith and her children are entertaining us here, I am attempting to entertain readers at The Blood Red Pencil with a few jokes about writers. Come on by if you get a chance.
The following is an imaginary interview with Meredith, conducted by her five-year-old daughter and one-year-old son. The children were not compensated for this interview, unless you consider string cheese and free room and board for eighteen years to be compensation.
Daughter: Today we are interviewing my Mommy, who wrote a book about me.
MPH: Well, actually, honey, it’s based on you and your brother. But it’s really about all mommies, and what it’s like to raise small children. From those moments when you feel complete, unbounded joy, to those times you want to lock yourself in the bathroom—except you can’t, because your toddler’s already locked himself in there, and you’re waiting for the locksmith.
Daughter (whispering): But Mommy, it’s mostly about me, right?
MPH: Yes, honey. It’s mostly about you.
Son: Ma-ma! Ma-ma! Cheese! Cheese!
(Interview pauses while Mommy gets cheese for Toddler, who has climbed onto the table and is jumping up and down like the gorilla in Donkey Kong.)
Daughter: So, what made you write a book about me?
MPH: Well, it’s not all about you, honey . . . never mind. One thing I talk about in the book is how I never planned to pursue humor writing. For a long time I wanted to write a great work of literary fiction, exploring deep, existential issues. But when I sat down to write this masterpiece, I found myself writing about . . . sippy cups. Motherhood had become a part of my life, a part of me. Suddenly it felt unnatural to write about anything else. Sippy cups it was!
Son: Cup! Cup! Cup!
(Interview pauses while Mommy gets cup for Toddler, who has climbed onto his sister’s head and is trying to eat her hair.)
Daughter: Are there princesses in the book?
MPH: No, no princesses. But lots of things that mommies can relate to, like attending three princess birthday parties in one weekend, or surviving the grocery store, or making small talk with your kid’s imaginary friend. Mommy A to Z is also about the joyful moments of motherhood—like when your baby bursts into giggles at his first game of peek-a-boo, or when your daughter blushes with excitement as she blows out her birthday candles, everyone she loves cheering her on. Because ultimately, while motherhood is full of chaos, it’s also filled with unimaginable love and happiness.
Daughter: Are there stickers in the book? Good books have stickers.
MPH: Well, it’s an eBook, so no stickers. One of the fun things about the book is that it’s organized as an encyclopedia. So, you have twenty-six chapters, one for each letter of the alphabet, with short entries designed to fit into a mom’s busy schedule. Entries cover all the day-to-day experiences of motherhood, such as “A is for Art Projects,” “B is for Birthday Parties,” “C is for Conception” . . .
Daughter: What’s “conception”?
MPH: Um . . . did you have any other questions, honey?
(Interview pauses while Mommy chases Toddler, who has grabbed a roll of toilet paper and is proceeding to redecorate the hallway.)
Daughter: Will kids like the book?
MPH: It’s really a book for mommies, although there are also entries about dads and grandparents, and what makes those relationships so special. I love when readers tell me how relatable they found the book—how it captured the realities of motherhood while making them laugh.
Daughter: How do you get a book? Does it cost a hundred dollars? I have four dollars in my piggy bank, but I wanted to buy a My Little Pony.
Son: Pony! Pony! Cheese!
MPH: The book only costs $5.99, and I think the nice lady that invited us here today has links for people who want to buy it. It’s available at Amazon and Barnes & Noble and the Apple iBookstore.
Daughter: OK, that’s all. Now I’m going to dress up in my Frozen gown and freeze my brother forever.
MPH: That sounds nice, sweetie. Don’t forget to clean up your room when you’re done.
About the Author:
Meredith Peters Hale is an editor and writer whose work has appeared on sites including The Huffington Post, Pampers.com and WhattoExpect.com. She has recently launched a new humor blog based on her book, MommyAtoZblog.com. Meredith currently resides in Westchester, New York, with her husband and two feisty (and energetic) children.