i think it is great that he is stepping up and trying to help. You shouldn't expect him to be handle it perfectly all at once. your kids will survive a few weeks/months while he gets a handle on expectations and how to deal with stuff. but all that will come faster if you just let him figure it out on his own.
and I htink you shouldn't be ragging on your husband to your friends. thats just rude. i would be mad if I walked in and heard my husband telling his friends what a terrible parent i was compared to him. if youhave a problem with his parenting you need to talk to him about it.
I'd suggest getting a copy of the book "Screamfree Parenting" for him. It helped me go from being a screamer to a calm, rational parent...most of the time.
I agree with lilyka re: venting to your girlfriend about the problem. How would you feel if your husband was telling his friend what a bad housekeeper you are (just an example)? That kind of thing doesn't sit well with me.
i was not able to read to op but i think we all need friends to talk to about different things going on in our lives. it doesn't sound like she was just sitting around complaining but more like she was looking for advice. as long as you aren't talking to someone else just to avoid talking to your spouse, i don't see why it would be such a problem.