I became an aunt nearly eight years ago when my nephew Fredrick was born, and then again three years with the birth of my niece, Claire. From the moment I met these two precious bundles I was completely smitten by them, and I relish being an auntie.
Or should I say I relish being a Savvy Auntie?
Melanie Notkin’s book Savvy Auntie: Ultimate Guide for Cool Aunts, Great-Aunts, Godmothers, and All Women Who Love Kids discusses the fun and joy in playing such a role in a child’s life. Playing with nieces and nephews, reading to them, telling secrets, sharing family and holiday traditions and discovering are just a few of the joys of being an aunt. In the book, real-life aunties share memories and stories on why being an aunt is such a wonderful thing, and while reading it, I couldn’t help but reminisce about the fun times I’ve had with Fredrick and Claire.
The book comes with a host of practical advice for aunties, like how to throw a baby shower, first aid tips, baby proofing your home, traveling with kids (always have snacks on hand) and how to contribute to a niece or nephew’s college education.
The book is also peppered with fun facts and trivia. Want to know what kind of aunt you are by your birth sign? Savvy Auntie will let you know. (As a Pisces, I am apparently the empathetic and intuitive … but I’ll let Fredrick and Claire be the judge of that). Can you name any famous aunties in pop culture? Well, there is the neurotic Aunt Jackie from Roseanne and Opie Taylor’s kindly Aunt Bee from The Andy Griffith Show. And you certainly can’t forget Auntie Mame from the iconic film of the same name who declared “Life is a banquet, and most poor fools are starving to death!”
Still, those quibbles are minor. For the most part, Savvy Auntie is a joy to read, informative and the perfect book for both newly-minted aunties and aunties with years of experience.
(And just a special shout out to my sister, Julie — I know I’ve been an auntie for quite a while, but it is never too late to throw me a “DebutAunt Ball.” I don’t need anything fancy. Just get mom’s recipe for Brandy Smash and pick up a bucket of KFC’s original recipe and I’ll be a happy camper.)