At the end of a very hard week, things are suddenly good, except for the twelve-hundred calories of milkshake that Peter ingests right before recording, causing him to hate himself and everything else. Beth discovers a local infrared sauna that may or may not be run out of a van. Peter and Beth debate the merits of having a second child with your ex, unpack an international Would You Knows scenario and answer some listener mail about March Madness potty training, staggering bedtimes and more forest based pre-school.
The family returns from a much needed, long-weekend, mid-winter, indoor pool vacation during which Maeven decides that she knows how to read and Bryn throws a beach tantrum. Peter shares an article about how a nation’s level of income inequality effects parenting styles. Then, while unpacking a Would You Knows scenario, in which Maeven can talk to dead people, Peter and Beth try their best to remain civil while discussing their VERY different belief systems surrounding spirituality, and in this goal, they do… okay.
Beth and Peter attend an info session for the local dual language kindergarten program and are now suddenly feeling very competitive about getting Bryn into the program. Valentine’s day brings the first fully stress-free date night in a while followed the next day by Beth and Peter’s first big fight in front of kids old enough to not only understand what their parents are yelling at each other but also to respond. Bryn demands that Peter apologizes to Mommy. In this week’s Would You Knows Beth unpacks a Freaky Friday scenario that neither she nor Peter can remember if they’ve done before and then announce the first We Knows Parenting Live Show coming up in April.
This week everything is fine and it’s totally weird. Peter and Beth aren’t sure how to handle it when their kids are mostly reasonable and don’t put up too much of a fight. Things are good… and it’s terrifying. Instead of complaining, Peter shares a bunch of rapid fire parenting “fun” facts including one about a city in India that drops babies from a 50 foot tower (and catches them). You know, for “fun.” Beth and Peter then answer some listener mail about how moms and dads prepare (or don’t prepare) for the coming of a new baby.
Beth returns from her mom-cation to find that parenting is a bit easier when you’re well rested. Peter compliments Beth for her handling of a Bryn tantrum, but mostly to take credit for the tactics she used. Beth and Bryn encounter a real life Would You Knows scenario and live to tell the tale. Peter shares a study on quality of time vs. quantity and agrees with the results mostly because it justifies his own behavior, Beth turns cleaning into a game, and some listener mail prompts the question: what to do with all this snot?
While Beth lives it up on her solo vacation to the Cayman Islands, Peter whips the kids into shape with the power of silence, clear boundaries, a strict bedtime and (more than) a little help from Grandma. Despite being incredibly helpful with the kids Peter’s mom refuses to be a guest on the podcast and he’s forced to interrupt Beth’s vacation for a last minute recording, which she is, of course, MORE than happy to do. He then calls his best friend Nick for a spooky Would You Knows scenario. And just when you think that one episode of talking about different names for vaginas is enough Peter and Beth talk about it a whole lot more.
After swearing he would never wear his pink striped pants again, Bryn pulls a 180 and declares pink to be his favorite color. Maeven, with an unwavering devotion to all things pink, is not impressed and possibly a little bit threatened. For MLK Jr. Day, Peter stays home with the kids and attempts to teach them a lesson about inclusion by forcing Maeven’s My Little Ponies to invite Bryn’s Rock Lords to their dance party. Some rock/pony based biases are revealed. Inspired by a listener email, Peter and Beth wrap up the episode by brainstorming an appropriate, kid-friendly name for vagina — Peter makes a strong case for "hooha."
This week Bryn gets bullied for wearing pants with a pink stripe on it and then starts having nightmares that he pretends to not be bothered by. Are these things related? Peter reads Bryn and Maeven’s answers from their new question-a-day “journal.” Peter and Beth discuss the impostor syndrome that comes with being a new parent and answer a listener question about whether it’s better to let kids learn by making their own mistakes or by you telling them what’s what.
After a week off and a mostly successful holiday season, the whole family returns home and finds that they must completely rebuild all the pre-holiday routines. Peter and Beth binge home improvement shows resulting in Peter throwing away half of his clothes, Beth relates to a twitter thread about setting clear boundaries with your kids, then Peter and Beth are defeated by the most detailed and devastating Would You Knows scenario to date.
After a brief week in review in which Bryn, the most performative four-year-old around, shocks the world by clamming up and crying his way through the Pre-K Winter concert performance, Beth and Peter dedicate the rest of this last episode of the year to the first ever Would You Knows Year End Spectacular. What is a Would You Knows Year End Spectacular? Great question. Take a listen and find out!
Maeven decides that she will never sleep ever again leading Peter and Beth to slowly lose their minds while a sleeping Bryn seems entirely unaware that the person he shares a room with has been screaming “Mommy” for an hour and a half. Beth researches famous celebrity deaths of 2004 after Bryn declares that before he was born he had been dead for 10 years. Bryn learns (not only) how to cook from watching Peter and Beth, but also, how to act stressed while cooking. Finally, Beth and Peter revisit last week’s Would You Knows? scenario after a listener accepts the challenge to make it more specific.
Peter and Beth start the podcast by sharing something intimate – too intimate maybe – and Peter regrets it. Now that Bryn has started to cooperate more, Maeven has decided that it’s her turn to make everything difficult for no reason by objecting to all things always (expect for potty training which she is nailing). Peter and Beth then discuss some listener mail about the difference between abusive parents and parents that simply scream too much, and how to explain anatomy to your kids without reinforcing a strictly binary view of gender. Then Beth knitpicks another Would You Knows scenario about time travel.
This week Peter loses his mind and in an utterly desperate attempt to get Bryn to cooperate threatens to throw away all of his toys. Maeven begins potty training and may or may not be using the threat of peeing her pants to assert her power. Peter shares an article about how girls views of themselves has evolved over the years while society’s hasn’t kept pace. Peter and Beth then answer some listener mail about “Resistance Peeing.”
For Thanksgiving the whole family manages to fly across the country (and back) without getting into (too many) fights or meltdowns. Only after they return home does a week’s worth of meltdowns happen in a single night sending Peter into a rage spiral moments before recording this episode. As he calms down, Peter and Beth confuse the difference between community and regional theater, debate when it’s appropriate to use bribery cookies and then apologize profusely for insulting people with a hyphenated last names in the previous episode. WE’RE SORRY!
Bryn starts waking up early to secretly watch South Park while everyone else is still asleep. The kids impress Beth with their intuitive grasp of a new social media app. Bryn has a full meltdown after being denied the opportunity to destroy a full shelf of pottery at an arts and crafts store. Beth and Peter learn about parental leave in the Czech Republic, lambast hyphenated last names, prepare for a cross country flight on the busiest travel day of the year and then accidentally reveal that all four grandparents are getting kid painted mugs for Christmas. Instead of editing it out of the recording, they decide to leave it in to see if their parents still listen to the podcast.
Maeven graduates from the crib to her very own mermaid covered big girl bed and manages to only fall out a couple of times! Bryn learns two big lessons: that friendships have their ups and down and that he can get Beth to buy him things with the mere threat of a public meltdown. While Beth is at work, Peter spends a Monday holiday at home rewriting punchlines to kids’ jokes with a lot of input from Bryn and Maeven. Peter and Beth answer listener mail about the “right” way to play with your kids and reveal another shocking layer to the continuing saga started in the infamous “Peter is NOT Defensive” episode.
With only two major tantrums and zero planning Beth and Peter declare victory on Halloween. The family goes out to lunch with Grandma and Grandpa where Peter and Beth fight about whether to use YouTube to keep Bryn at the table or not. Peter then traumatizes Bryn by telling him that someday he’ll have to move out. Beth and Peter answer some listener mail about the unintended message of gender reveal videos and how to deal with a toddler that cries whenever anything changes. Finally, Beth shares an article about accepting compromise in both your family and work life for the sake of the other. Also, a lot of candy is eaten. Like, a gross amount.
The dreaded daycare meeting about Bryn’s listening skills happens and it’s...fine. The whole family spends the weekend actually doing family stuff, first going to a pumpkin “blaze” and later to the aquarium with Nana and Grandad. Peter and Beth talk about the pros and cons (but mostly the cons) of only one parent learning the gender of a baby in utero and then answer some listener mail. Peter then messes up the recording and debates whether he should complete the episode on his own or wake up Beth, who is still recovering from a cold, to re-record a segment.
After daycare raises some concerns about Bryn’s “listening” skills, Peter and Beth start to realize that maybe not everyone thinks their kids are as great as they do. They then give Bryn a crash course on the concept of selfishness, realizes they’ve neglected to teach Maeven numbers, and then ultimately (and perhaps too quickly) decide to forgive themselves for their failures as parents. Peter and Beth then discuss a study about the effects of praising kids for their intelligence vs. effort and read some listeners mail about the appropriate amount of time and temperature in which it is acceptable to leave your kids in the car.