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Pinterest predicts the top parenting trends for 2017

I'm Parenting Editor at SheKnows. I'm the co-author of Let's Panic About Babies(Macmillan, 2011). I've also written for numerous publications including Salon, Redbook, Nerve, and The Onion. I live in Brooklyn with my husband, son, tiny d...

Pinterest tells us how we'll be parenting in 2017, and we have opinions

No longer content to simply show us updos we’ll never be able to do and whimsical cakes that our clumsy meat hooks would ruin, now Pinterest is predicting the future. The mysterious future! Their insights team dug through the data, analyzing search results and save activity, and have emerged with the top 100 trends we’ll all be thinking about in 2017.

Herein are the top 10 trends emerging in parenting according to Pinterest. We’ll just see about that, Pinterest.

1. Homemade Popsicles

Have you been buying Popsicles? Well, not for long. Pinterest says you’re going to be making them in 2017. “Naturally sweetened, homemade popsicles are the new go-to snack (up 44%),” according to the report.

Because we’ve always been vanguards, here is a homemade Popsicle recipe for you from the SheKnows food channel. Better memorize it. You’re going to be quite the Popsicle maker in the coming year.

2. Woodland-themed nurseries

Woodland-themed nurseries! And we quote: “Cozy, woodland-themed nurseries are huge right now (up 97%), featuring tree wall decals and wood accents.” 

This sounds nice. Who doesn’t want their babies to be safely ensconced in a burrow or a warren? We don’t know what woodland-themed nurseries did to deserve all this new attention, but we say bring it on. (Gender-neutral nurseries, by the way, were last year's favorite. Now they are repellent to us. We don’t create these trends, people. We only report.) (And I know your next question: Wouldn’t a woodland-themed nursery also be pretty gender-neutral? We hope to be able to answer your pesky questions in 2017.) 

More: Can we stop calling "gender neutral" a parenting trend yet?

3. Helping your kids develop through play

No more helping them develop through work! Put away the grindstone, 2016 parents, because it’s all about playtime. This particular trend is up 35 percent.

But when was playing with your kid out of fashion? I mean in this century. And the last one. Before then you just shook your kid’s hand and handed him to the governess or put him out in the field and taught him how to use a scythe. I don’t really know how they did it back then.

4. Finger puppets

Finger puppets are up 70 percent. Throw out your horrible sock puppets, because the finger is where it’s at! “Can I just draw on my thumb with a Sharpie?” you may be asking. No you may not.

This one seems a little like cheating — isn’t this really the same as developing through play? Wouldn’t this be a subset, Pinterest? (A voice just boomed in my head: DO NOT QUESTION THE PINTEREST. CRAFT YOUR FINGER PUPPETS. CRAFT THEM.) 

And we obey.

 5. Story prompts

Story prompts are up 121 percent. “Have them draw from a bag of random objects and tell a story about what they pick — there's no right or wrong answers, just pure imagination.” 

How did this start catching on? Did someone’s parent take a writing class?

This is actually pretty cool, although I wouldn’t be surprised if the parent ends up doing all the story creating. Kids are notorious for making their parents do all the work.

More: 11 books coming out in 2017 that will help you forget how shitty the year's been

6. Classic baby names

Classic baby names are up 78 percent. Your newfangled names are wrong! We could have told you that.

7. Virtual reality toys

VR toys are up 65 percent according to Pinterest, and they’ll just keep growing in popularity throughout 2017 until none of us lives in the real world.

Is this really a growing trend for kids, though? No, Pinterest. No. I resist! Leave the virtual reality to the adults who’ve had enough of actual reality.

8. Fairy gardens

Fairy gardens are up 106 percent because they are full of magic and whimsy, and Pinterest-addicted moms love both magic and whimsy. Tiny houses! Tiny plants! Tiny trees! The smaller something is, the cuter it is. That’s just science. Check out our tips on creating fairy gardens, here.

Fairy gardens are the exact kind of whimsical thing I wish I had done when my kid was little. And if my kid were still little, this is the exact sort of thing about which I’d say, “I should do this,” and then I would never do it. Is self-knowledge trending, Pinterest? It should be.

9. Teaching your kid Spanish

Spanish-language activities are hot for 2017, apparently — they’re up by more than 300 percent.

…Sure. There's nothing wrong with this. Spanish is a practical, sensible choice. I guess I'm a little disappointed it's not Urdu or Māori. Here are our tips on teaching your kid a second language when you don't speak it.

More: This hot new parenting trend is making moms go out of their minds

10. Road trips

Are you going on a road trip with your family in 2017? If you don’t think you are, you’re wrong. Road trips are trending — and is it any wonder, really, when airplane travel is as god-awful as it is? So yes, Pinterest, I'll give you this one.

In conclusion

There is nothing overly objectionable about these trends (except I’m still side-eyeing that VR toys thing like crazy). But the whole endeavor is reminding me of that episode of 30 Rock (and this is going far back in time, I know, but stay with me) when Liz Lemon took sleeping pills and thought she met Oprah on a plane, and Oprah told her that the new big things were going to be sweater capes, saltwater taffy and calypso music. And then it just turned out she had been talking to a spunky tween named Pam. I think we’re all being Pammed.

Pinterest tells us how we'll be parenting in 2017, and we have opinions
Image: NBC

On the other hand, Pam was cute. And homemade Popsicles can be delicious. So really, we could do worse.

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