Yesterday, I reviewed How to Be an American Housewife a captivating debut novel by Margaret Dilloway. This novel highlights the conflicts between cultures and how to adapt to them, the challenges between Japanese mothers and their American born daughters and coming to terms with hidden secrets and family discoveries. Personally, I loved this novel, the main characters were full of strength and character and I enjoyed the focus on the mother daughter relationship. That is something that most women can relate to and for me I could especially relate to the experience of having a foreign born mother. As I shared in my review (you can read it HERE), my mother was German born and raised and came to America after marrying my father who was stationed there in the Air Force. She barely spoke English and had to learn our culture and ways and adjust to a new family of different background while leaving behind her family of origin. Mothers who come from different cultures have their own experiences and beliefs to share with their daughters and families. I didn't appreciate everything when I was younger, especially when my mom served soft boiled eggs in egg cups for breakfast. Later, I learned to appreciate more of the cultural differences, but I still don't care for soft boiled eggs. Although, I do love German Goulash and German potato salad.
I'm thrilled to welcome Margaret Dilloway, author of How to Be an American Housewife to share a wonderful guest post with everyone today. Margaret will share her thoughts about parenting.
My mom taught me not to use processed foods. She was proud of making things from scratch and always had to serve a vegetable and grain with the family dinner; she taught me not to serve two starches together. Everything from a birthday cake to mashed potatoes had to be homemade. I am not quite so strict, especially since boxed foods have improved so much, but I definitely hear her saying in my head, “Mash your own potatoes! It won’t take much more time.”
She was also very conscious of waste, and taught me how to save rainwater for later use (not that there’s much in San Diego), how to hang laundry, how to compost. It made me aware of conservation as a thing to do because it’s responsible and frugal.
In terms of interaction with children, I am really not much like my mother, and that is a fairly deliberate choice. I heard on the radio the other day that in Japanese culture, the mother will criticize the child because success is expected and shortcomings must be overcome. I remember the criticisms stinging more than helping, though, so if I have to correct my child, I tend to explain why more than my mother did and be gentler with my words.
Thanks to Margaret Dilloway for sharing her thoughts on parenting and how we can learn from our parents but we can also deliberately choose to be different than our parents. Visit Margaret's Blog, American Housewife, HERE.
I am excited to tell you that you have the opportunity to win your own copy of How to Be an American Housewife! Thanks to the publisher, Penguin and TLC Book Tours, they have offered to send a copy of the book to One lucky winner!
All you have to do is leave a comment, make sure to include your email address so that I can contact you if you are a winner. Otherwise, I won't be able to include your name in the drawing. Open to US & Canada only, No PO Boxes. Books will ship directly to the winners from the publisher.
Enter by August 14, 2010.