New fears about pesticide exposure |


Hey there parents,

Hello parents who may well be reading this just to distract themselves from the contents of the Mueller report. Welcome to the weekend! So much interesting news this week that I shan't bore you with a family update. All right, except to say, think VERY hard before setting up an Uber account for your child. Yes, they can always get home safe! No, they will never ever not use it even when the train is right there at the front door. You can reach me at or @luscombeland on Twitter.

P.S. If you like this newsletter, please pass it on to a friend. And if you got it from a friend, sign up here for email delivery each Friday. You know, more or less.

Just get a load of this sentence. "There’s nothing like telling a stranger that your first husband died of brain cancer when your son was nearly 2 and you have since married a father of two and had another baby to make your conversation partner suddenly feel his cell phone ringing in his pocket. " This is QUITE an essay. TIME

In one of the largest studies—more than 30,000 people—that has ever looked at the possible effects of pesticide exposure on fetuses and babies, scientists found that exposure to the most commonly used pesticides was linked to higher risk of autism. This could be explain so much. TIME

Regular readers of this newsletter know that I wish ill of no person, except for those fiends who invented the juul. Those people and their vape-selling brethren, as far as I'm concerned, can have sleepless nights, hideous goiters and hammer toes. Here's why: "Research suggests that vapes, which were allegedly invented to help smokers quit, often drive young people toward traditional cigarettes, rather than the other way around. After years of declines, teen smoking rates actually rose slightly between 2017 and 2018 — from 7.6% of high schoolers to 8.1%." If you really want to get your dander up, read more at TIME.

The American Academy of Pediatricians has updated its guidance for when to feed babies peanuts. As recent studies have suggested, it may be more prudent to introduce them sooner rather than later, to ward off peanut allergies. TIME

Here is a lovely, funny, fire-breathing, controversial essay by an African American father, Damon Young, about his hopes and dreams for his daughter. Among other things, he wants her to know that "blackness forces you to love harder. It forces you to entertain the concept of forgiveness and choose whether it’s a thing you’re interested in possessing. It forces your hugs and your kisses and your daps to be tighter and longer, like a book you read ever so slowly because you’re not quite ready for it to end." TIME

Depression in adults has been linked to an area of the brain known as the hippocampus. Now a new study has suggested that the shape of the hippocampus may be influenced by team sports played in adolescence. This may mean that kids who play team sports have less chance of depression later in life. So if you're getting up early on a Saturday to take the kids to somethingorrather practice, take heart! By the way, this study, which was published in an academic journal, was done by a college senior. Imagine who chuffed her parents must be. Science Daily

As a parent who didn't always remember pajama day, I am in awe of this mother. Instagram

PFFT: Parenting from Famous Types

Julia Roberts, movie star and mother of three, on the college admission scandal

"That to me is so sad. Because I feel, from an outsider, that it says a little bit, ‘I don’t have enough faith in you,' ”

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