Dad of Divas' Reviews: Book Review - Grow the Tree You Got

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Book Review - Grow the Tree You Got

About the Book
Tom Sturges lost his father (legendary filmmaker Preston Sturges) when he was just a toddler. Growing up with a dearth of father figures, Tom always vowed that when he had kids, he'd be the best dad in the whole world. That was easy enough- until his sons hit adolescence and all h*ll broke loose. Hugs became huffs, doors were slammed, and end-of-day chats were replaced with the silent treatment.

Grow The Tree You Got is a compilation of the rules Tom devised to get him through the turbulent tides of adolescence. Inspirations included Tom's own trials-by-fire with both his own children and the LA at-risk youth he volunteers extensively with, and Tom's career as EVP/Head of Creative at Universal Music, working with stars like Justin Bieber and 50 Cent. Creating a hit song, he says, is not so different from raising a great kid: it takes time, love, energy and patience. 

Rules in the book include "The Paul McCartney Rule (Never Be Embarassed)," "Once Said, Never Unsaid," "How To Lose Like A Champion" and, of course, "Grow The Tree You Got." The rules are unconventional, occasionally humorous, and all are based around the same idea: you can never show your teenager too much respect- but it doesn't hurt to try.

About the Author
Tom Sturges is the father of three sons, nineteen, thirteen and two. He is Executive Vice President and Head of Creative for Universal Music Publishing Group. A coach, mentor, teacher, and volunteer, his efforts with at-risk children at an inner-city Los Angeles public school have impacted the lives of hundreds of students there. He has received many commendations and citations from civic and national leaders for his volunteerism, which is also the topic of the award- winning documentary Witness to a Dream. The author of Parking Lot Rules & 75 Other Ideas for Raising Amazing Children, Sturges' father was the legendary filmmaker Preston Sturges. 

My Take on the Book  
This book is just full of great insight that he shares through his life experiences. He also truly makes you look at your own experiences with your own parents and makes you juxtapose this with the relationships that you may have or may be having in the future with your own kids. 

Many of the things that he shared in the book were things that I have thought of in the past for what I will want to share with my own daughter when the time is right. There were other kernels though that were much newer for me!

I will say that this book was a great primer for preparing yourself as a parent to parent a teen. While no one is completely ready for this point in life, the author has shared his experiences and how he works with teenagers, which was great, as it is definitely a time when you want them to be close, and instead many times they are pulling away for their own independence.

All opinions expressed in this review are my own and not influenced in any way by the company.  Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer or provider. Please refer to this site's Disclaimer  for more information. I have been compensated or given a product free of charge, but that does not impact my views or opinions.  
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