From Zero to Four Kids in Thirty Seconds
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From Zero to Four Kids in Thirty Seconds is a humorous yet compelling story of a woman who fell hook, line and thousands of dollars in sinkers for a guy with four kids and enough fishing tackle to sink a small boat. It has 70 tips that are helpful for stepmothers and future stepmothers, and it’s a fun read for any woman who bit off more than she bargained for and gained even more in the end. More
Amy is a 30-year-old woman who spent many years polishing an unapproachable outer shell and maintaining a long list of reasons why not to have children. She keeps a canoe on her front porch, a mountain bike in her kitchen and a balance in her checking account.
Mark is an older, divorced man with four kids. He sleeps on an Army cot and eats out of pots and pans given to him by his therapist. He has a Ph.D. in stream ecology, a VW Rabbit with 285,000 miles on it and enough fishing tackle to sink a small boat.
Amy falls for Mark hook, line and hundreds of dollars in sinkers.
This is Amy’s humorous yet compelling story of becoming a stepmother. The book’s catchy chapter titles and over 70 tips make this a must read for stepmothers and future stepmothers. And it’s a fun read for any woman who took on more than she’d bargained for and gained even more in the end.
The first chapter, As if I Would go Looking for Trouble Like This, shows Amy trying not to fall for a guy with kids, let alone one with four kids ages three, five, 13 and 15. But she does anyway and in Chapter 2, The Dreaded Children, Amy meets the children while loitering around a Subway restaurant. This leads to Tip#10: Avoidance is the next best thing to confrontation. When Amy finally builds up the nerve to visit the kids at Mark’s apartment, it’s soon clear she doesn’t have a clue what she’s gotten into--the kids are playing with Transformers and Water Babies and other things she knows nothing about; she brings over four bags of groceries because she has no idea how much food four kids eat; and the rigatoni she prepares is as hard as week-old French bread.
Chapter Three is “Mom, Meet Mark” and introduces Amy’s curious, conservative mother, who definitely would not have chosen an older divorced man for her daughter. It also introduces other family members including two siblings and Amy’s father, all of whom have a great sense of humor.
In Chapter four, Adored and Ignored, Amy attempts to deal with the fact that the two younger kids won’t leave her alone, while the teenagers won’t pay her any attention. This chapter includes Tip #22: A teenager can say “I love you, I hate you, you’re cool, you suck” in one breath to the same person. And mean every word.
Chapter five, Got Time for Some of This?, shows Amy trying all sorts of ways to get Mark’s attention after his oldest moves in with him. This chapter is prefaced by Tip #25: If you have to be Top Dog all the time, you’re barking up the wrong tree.
In Chapter six, This a Vacation Does Not Make, Amy takes Mark and his oldest daughter to Florida to swim with manatees; Mark’s contribution is to take the ladies bass fishing for two days. On the way home, Mark insists on catching a lizard for his daughter to take home as a pet, and that doesn’t go well, either.
The next chapter, Is that Sweat Dripping off Your Forehead, Honey?, shows the usually cool and collected Mark asking Amy’s dad for permission to marry his daughter. The next few chapters show life in a small apartment with Mark and four kids, and Amy being challenged by each child in turn. One event leads to Tip #44: You can’t trade a bad kid for a good head of lettuce. Another chapter details going to a horribly long school band performance at the kid’s school and how Mark acts like a fifth child. A full chapter is devoted to how to avoid and eventually deal with an Ex.
In the chapter I Do-Do Amy struggles to plan a simple but elegant wedding in the face of women selling frilly dresses, hideous flowers, and boring wedding cakes. In Chapter 14, A Family Reunion in Disney Land Hell, Amy becomes the gap between her new family and her old family on a hilarious, stressful vacation.
From Zero to Four Kids in Thirty Seconds is a fun ride that will convince women that with the right guy, being a stepmother can be rewarding, fun and full of surprises. Amy wouldn’t have had it any other way.
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