Article in the Washington Post today about a 35 year high in American fertility. Apparently, we’ve once again reached 2.1 children per woman, aka “the replacement rate.”

Here’s what I found interesting:

While being a mother who works outside the home is far from easy for many American women, many experts said the United States is in many ways more amenable to the practice than many other developed countries. The high-octane consumer economy, for example, helps women run households more efficiently in a number of ways, including making prepared foods more widely available, and weekend and late-night shopping possible. American men are also helping more with their children than in the past, experts say.

“We also have a relatively high percentage of part-time jobs available,” said Ronald Rindfuss, a sociology professor at the University of North Carolina. “There’s also more shift work outside the normal nine-to-five, Monday-through-Friday schedule that enables parents to share child care.”

Alright, I don’t have children so I probably shouldn’t chime in, but does this bug anyone else? Are pre-prepared foods, late-night shopping, and off-hours shift work really positive developments for families? Or for the women who—of course—run households?