5 Lessons in Parenthood From Middle Earth


The Lord of the Rings saga is littered with life lessons. Tolkien really did have a way with the inspirational Instagram friendly quotes and so many of them apply to the business of parenthood. When you think about, children and hobbits do have a lot in common….

1) On Advice

rings advice

Advice is easy to give. Most people just dash it out without thinking and when you are a first time parent, everyone has an opinion and most of them completely contradict each other. You should let them cry. Ohemgee, crying is child abuse, never let them cry.  Wear all the babies. Don’t hold them in case you spoil them. Sleep when the baby sleeps – I seriously loathe that one. Here’s the best advice I ever got – from the wise to the wise: do whatever the hell you have to do to get your family through it and don’t listen to anyone who’s not willing to come to your house at 2AM and deal with the consequences.

2) On Size

rings size

I’m going to tell you something that will blow your mind. Babies change you. Woah woah I know, ground breaking right?!! When we were pregnant, we did a Baby PPP course at a local university and there was this couple there who kept asking questions like ‘taking a newborn out to a friends place for a late night should be fine because newborns are pretty portable, right?’. I wasn’t quite that naive going in, but I still wasn’t prepared for how much Bear would change my life.  While going out to a movie on the weekend might require more planning, it’s still doable, but I choose not to unless it’s something really awesome like Captain America. What changed was me. I work all week, and my weekends have become sacred time for hanging out at home and playing Tickle Ducks. That tiny human changed me, just by existing.

3) On Happiness

rings happiness

Does anyone in the world enjoy life like a toddler? They are the living embodiment of the best things in life being free.  Watching my son flap his hands with excitement over a cool dog or do the dance of joy because he spotted his friend at daycare is just incredible. There’s a purity in the way they see the world – everything and everyone is beautiful until proven otherwise. Being around children gives you back that sense of wonder and beauty for a little while.

4) On Food

rings meals

My child definitely subscribes to the hobbit meal plan and is also involved in an epic love story with PO-TAY-TOES (boil ’em, mash ’em, stick ’em in a stew).   From birth he fed more than any other baby in my mothers group and as a toddler, he empties our fridge on a regular basis. This is what my son ate last Thursday:

  • Breakfast: Adult size bowl of porridge with apple and cinnamon.
  • Second Breakfast: 1 whole banana; 1 pot apple yoghurt
  • Elevenses: an entire pear; 2 cheese sticks, 4 water crackers and a packet of Nutrios
  • Luncheon : 2 portions of butter chicken, as well as anyone else’s lunch that isn’t nailed down; pouch of fruit puree;
  • Afternoon Tea: Yet another banana; 6 small gingerbread men; Container of freeze dried yoghurt dots
  • Dinner: A normal toddler sized portion of dinner – one can’t be greedy after all
  • Supper: 2 apple and carrot muffins

I don’t know about you but I couldn’t friggin eat all that. And he demolishes it every single day and remains thin as a whip. Hobbit I tells you.

5) On Planning

rings planning

Bear is a teeny Bilbo Baggins – most of the time content at home, but also really loves to head off on an adventure! However, his idea of an adventure and mine are very different. To me, you pick a destination and then carefully plan everything you want to see and do while there. To my son, we go to to a cool place, but just sort of run around like a loon and explore everything interesting.  This used to drive me mental, being the planner that I am, but I’ve learnt to embrace it. It’s restful to just explore with him for the fun of it instead of scheduling everything around.


Have you had a lesson in parenthood from an unlikely source or do you just love Lord of the Rings like me? Share in the comments!

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  1. So true. “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future”. My wee baby Koby totally changed the course of my future, and he was only with us a very short time.
    And the Happiness like a toddler – OMG hearing my boy laugh with his whole self is the most incredible thing and certainly makes you wish you could feel such a pure happiness.

  2. Loved it Tory 🙂 so true …. Little Henry does love his food and loves home and a small adventure . Your Blogs are so entertaining … Xxxxxxx
    He is a cute little hobbit .

  3. Beautiful analogy – love it! (And when they get older, they seem to exist throughout winter, even on the colder days, with shorts and sometimes no shoes, although maybe a jacket / hoodie. And their hair gets wilder. They even start looking like hobbits!

  4. I love these. My 4 year old son has definitely changed me and my life for the absolute best. Oh and the parenting advice, well, I’m currently 34 weeks pregnant with my second and I am totally ignoring every bit of advice everywhere and going with what I know is right and best for me. Other people’s parenting advice has seriously done my head in over the past 4 and a half years and probably done more harm than good!

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