"Reasons Mommy Drinks," the new book by Lyranda Martin Evans and Fiona Stevenson, could have been subtitled "What to Expect After You've Been Expecting."
“We really felt like this was the ultimate baby shower gift,” said Lyranda. “Both of us got a lot of doom and gloom books, so when we were writing we thought we wanted to do a baby shower gift book you can read and actually laugh with.”
It's a mom's eye view to surviving the first 18 months of parenting written chronologically from the baby shower to when the little ones are finally starting to walk and talk.
The book is part advice, part Bartender’s Guide that offers up a coping mechanism that comes with a twist — a lemon twist.
Each of the parenting challenges — dealing with naptime, in-laws or the first haircut — is paired with a mock or cocktail. The day care chapter, for instance, is matched with the Day Care Defense, a fruity rum drink they say will “numb your guilt, kill germs and boost your immune system.”
Lyranda and Fiona met in high school and bonded over a love of writing and performing comedy.
“In the 10th grade,” Fiona, a bright-eyed brunette with a ballerina build and an infectious smile, said, “we co-wrote and performed our first stand-up comedy show – a Full House/Beverly Hills 90210 mash-up – and in doing so discovered we had amazing creative chemistry and a similar comedic voice.”
Those shared interests fueled their friendship through university.
“After graduating and embarking on full-time careers in marketing and advertising, we looked for new ways to join forces creatively. We did the Second City conservatory program together, co-produced sold-out musical variety shows for charity, and founded a sketch comedy troupe called Math is Hard.”
Two years ago when the friends found themselves pregnant at the same time, Lyranda said they looked for a way to use their “creative writing skills and do something we enjoy.” After some thought they gave birth to reasonsmommydrinks.com.
“Like all working moms,” Fiona said, “we are time starved and want to maximize our time with our families. Our long history of creative collaboration and shared work ethic makes us an incredibly productive team. It’s amazing what we can accomplish in a two-hour power writing session during naptime! We wanted to give a voice to the new generation of moms – accomplished, ambitious women who, as they transition to their new role as parents, want to do the absolute best for their new baby in every possible way, without completely losing themselves in the process. To a time-starved, sleep-deprived new mom, it can feel like an impossible task at times, and we discovered there’s a lot of comedic gold in that daily struggle.”
The blog was an instant hit. “Parents immediately got the joke behind the title,” says Fiona. The success of the blog inspired them to think beyond the Internet.
“The book is about the first year-and-a-half, which I found really hard,” Lyranda says. “I did not have the kid who went to sleep. You see those mothers who have that perfect kid who sleeps all the time, wakes up happy. I didn’t have that kid. Neither did Fiona. We had high maintenance kids. But all the things that at the time were frustrating are now really funny. Tragedy plus time equals comedy.”
Lyranda says the tone of the book is tongue-in-cheek but she hopes parents — or even single people, whom she said can “use it as a birth control reminder” — will read the book and realize they are not alone.
“I think different women will take away different things from the book,” Lyranda says. “The overarching theme, the best thing you can take away from it, is we’re all in this together and it is so worth it. The very last drink in the book is the Kool Aid. It’s like, drink the Kool Aid. It’s worth it.”