I grew up with jelly bracelets, bright neons, Rainbow Brite, My Little Pony, and everybody’s favorite 80’s kid, Punky Brewster. My childhood hero has grown up with me into a powerhouse of a mom with two adorable little girls, her popular Moonfrye.com site, more than a million Twitter followers, an ecofriendly clothing line called The Little Seed, and her role as Target’s Mommy Ambassador. Now, I’ll be the first to admit that I’m not one to run out and buy the latest celebrity memoir, but when I was offered the chance to read and review Soleil’s new parenting book, Happy Chaos: From Punky to Parenting and my Perfectly Imperfect Adventures In Between, I wasn’t about to say no.
Happy Chaos shares stories from Soleil’s childhood (she once had Johnny Depp show up as a surprise guest to a birthday party), precious moments with her children, and perhaps most importantly, brings us non-celebrity moms right there with Soleil when she shares how she’s learning to accept that the mom she thought she was going to be is not the mom she actually became once her children were born. The beauty of it all is in the journey of discovery with our children.
And while not every mom can relate to a roster of celebrity BFFs (Ashton and Demi in the delivery room?) or boast about directing her first film at the age of 18, reading Happy Chaos reads more like a chat over a cup of coffee with a girlfriend than anything else because she knows what it’s like to leave the house with baby vomit in her hair, and she sometimes lets her kids have cupcakes for breakfast.
The format of the book might throw the reader off with each chapter introduced with comments from fans and ending with Soleil’s own tips for everything from what to pack in the carry-on for plane trips to how to find the right pediatrician. But overall, the book is a pleasant read for the fan moms who grew up with Punky. Part memoir and part parenting manual, Happy Chaos reminds us to embrace the crazy that motherhood brings while taking a moment to celebrate the magic of cutting an apple sideways just to show our children the star inside.
Who should read it: Mothers, Moms-to-be, Soleil Moon Frye fans
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars