Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Mom Version: Twas the Night Before Christmas

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through our abode,

the only creature stirring was Mom, carrying a load.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

waiting for Mom to fill them with without pulling out her hair.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,

while visions of the Elf on the Shelf leaving with Santa danced in their heads.

And Dad in his recliner, with the dog in his lap,

was snoring very loud while taking a nap.

When out in the kitchen there arose such a clatter,

Mom sprang from her work to see what was the matter.

Away from the room she flew like a flash,

to stop all noise, she sprinted the three yard dash.

The light from the lamp gave off a soft glow

as Mom hurried to make sure the noises would not grow.

When what to her wondering eyes should appear,

but the family cat eating Santa’s snacks left in here.

With very little movement, so stealthy and quick,

she shooed away the cat by waving a stick.

More rapid than a two year old, her Christmas present list grew,

and she jotted and thought and out of her mouth the list flew:

“Now iPad! Now Dart Board!

Now Barbie and Ken!

On Monopoly! On Sorry!

On American Girl and funky pen!

To the couch in the den!

To the chair by the wall!

Now put them here! And over there!

Set out Christmas presents for all!”

As what happens to a clean house when a toddler runs through,

Mom was met with an obstacle, but knew just what to do.

She started organizing the gifts to make sure they were all equal

in order to prevent World War II from having a sequel.

And then, for a moment, she heard noises again.

The ones that cause empty pillows where sleeping heads had once been.

As she turned her head and was walking that way,

she realized it was Daddy just snoring away.

He was already dressed for bed, reclined in his chair.

His idea of helping was sitting with his feet in the air.

So Mom made him get up, but he had to be led

as he stumbled down the hall and fell into bed.

Mom’s eyes, they looked weary.  Her smile seemed so dreary.

Her back was aching, but her spirit was still cheery.

Her lips were pressed together to make a straight line

as she read the directions for toy number nine.

The paper with instructions she held tight in her hand,

and the words seemed to be swimming like water and sand.

There were a lot of pieces for this simple little toy,

and the author of the directions had attempted to be coy.

Mom figured it all out without losing her cool,

she put together all of the toys without breaking one tool.

Now Dad is still snoring and Mom is almost done,

she has set up all the presents so Christmas morning can be fun!

She spoke not a word, but surveyed the room,

ate a cookie and then got the broom.

Mom swept and cleaned and took out the trash

hoping the children wouldn’t find the Christmas trash stash.

She put on her pajamas and got ready for bed,

she stumbled down the hall, but Mom did not have to be led.

She let out a small cry when the time of two o’clock came in sight,

but still murmured “Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good night!”

Image from Tumblr: merrychristmaschristmas
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Monday, December 17, 2012

Parent of a 1st Grader

There are many thoughts and feelings that I would like to put into words.  Words that seemed to have escaped me since this past Friday.  As so many people have said, I can't even remember last week before Friday.  It is a day burned into my brain and my heart forever.  I have spent the weekend like most Americans: watching the news.  Listening to the same stories over and over again because I cannot begin to fathom how this could have occurred; how someone could do something so evil.  

No event in my lifetime has ever had this big of an affect on me, and I live no where near Connecticut.  I share what most people in this country share who are extremely affected by this: I am a parent.  But it's more than that.  I am the parent of a 1st grader.  All of those children were my daughter's age.  Some of them a couple of weeks older than her, some of them a few months younger than her.  One of them even reminded me of her.

The scenarios that I have in my head are horrendous, and I cannot get rid of them.  I picture those kids doing what my daughter did Friday morning.  Bounding out of bed to go look for her elf to see where he was hiding.  Eating breakfast while chatting away a mile a minute about all she was going to do at school that day and how she couldn't wait to get home and play dolls with her sister.  Giving her daddy, me, and her sisters a hug and kiss before running inside the school building.  The difference is that my child came home Friday afternoon and played dolls with her sister.  I got to hug and squeeze her and tell her how much I love her.  Those other parents did not.  And I cannot help but dwell on the fact that next time it could be me and my children's school.  The most frightening part of that is that I have no control over it.  I would like to place armed guards at every entrance to every school, but that is not feasible.  I am not sure what the answer is or if there even is one.  Those parents will never be back to normal again, and I am not sure anyone who has children can be either.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Stocking Stuffer Ideas for Girls

I know, I know, Christmas is 40 days, 10 hours, and 53 minutes away, but I like to get things together ahead of time.  You might call me OCD, my husband does.  As I have mentioned many times before, I have three daughters ages 2, 7, and 9.  It has been my recent (as in this year recent) to keep the stocking stuffer price down, I am keeping it to $10 per child (minus the piece of jewelry that I put in their stocking each year).  Christmas tends to get more expensive each year, but my children have so many things that they really get too much for Christmas (translation: I get over zealous when shopping).  They are pretty good kids, they only put 10 items each on their letter to Santa, it is usually me who goes overboard with the presents.  However, this year, I am trying to be more frugal.  Also this year, I am done with all of the cavity-producing, lifetime-on-the-hips, sugar-high-inducing, Christmas candy that has dominated my childrens' stockings for the past [almost] decade.  Instead of a bunch of candy, I plan to make their stocking a surprise filled with little things that they were not expecting, but can use (not little things that will clutter up my house and never have a useful purpose).  There may be a few pieces of candy (seriously, like 4), and I will also put a bag of popped popcorn in there as well (what kid doesn't like popcorn?!).  Side note: I do not plan to give all of my children everything on the list below because, as I said, I want to keep each stocking to $10 with the exception of the jewelry (my older two children get two different pieces of jewelry).  I will give them the items based on their ages (which means my 9 and 7 year olds get pretty much the same thing, but my 2 year old gets some of the same and some a little different). So, without further ado, here is my list of ideas for stocking stuffers for girls:

  1. Silly Putty
  2. Nail Polish
  3. Chapstick/Lip Balm
  4. Piggy Bank with Coins
  5. Stickers
  7. Lotion (small)
  8. Shower Gel (small)
  9. Pencils
  10. Pens
  11. Flashlight
  12. Small Puzzle Book
  13. Small Stuffed Animal
  14. Manicure Kit
  15. Snow Globe
  16. Kaleidoscope
  17. Small Cars
  18. Mirror
  19. Earrings
  20. Necklace
  21. Bracelet
  22. Popcorn

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Wives Don't Let Husbands Go Grocery Shopping with Friends

I cleaned out the cabinets in my kitchen today (an incredibly boring task that I despise doing).  As I was doing this, I found TONS of spices (that we don't use).  I'm talking name brand spices in the big container that cost a fortune.  I do not buy these spices, these spices were purchased by my husband when he was let loose in the grocery store with friends.

My husband cannot be the only one who does this.  Whenever we have company over, the guys find some reason to go to the grocery story (as if we don't have enough things stuffed into our tiny kitchen cabinets).  This seems innocent enough, but my husband just doesn't go buy something that we are out of, he buys things that we already have only he gets the extremely large, name brand version because he thinks we do not have any of it.  Seriously, black pepper is an example (salt would be another).  These are things that a college kid would have in their dorm room so of course I have it in my kitchen.  It goes beyond that though, he picks up things that we do not use or use few and far between.  Things that we do not need the incredibly large and extremely expensive version (think fennel you even know what those are?  Yeah, neither did he, but it sounded good at the time).  He also loses all sense of portion size.  Suddenly 10 pounds of chicken seems like a good idea to bring home to cook, keep in mind that I nor our youngest eat meat and our two that do can split a piece.

This is where I need to interject and say that this ONLY happens when he goes to the grocery store with his friends, it does not happen when I send him to the grocery store by himself.  When he goes by himself, he uses his cell phone to call home and ask me a question on every aisle to make sure that he is getting the correct item.  So why can he not do this when he goes shopping with his friends?  Why must he spend $80 on a shopping trip that should have cost $10?  Is he the only husband that does this? 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

What Did Your Election Behavior Teach Your Children?

Today is a new day.  It is not yesterday, and it is not tomorrow.  This election had friends, neighbors, coworkers, family, religions, bloggers, the entire country divided.  There were mean-spirited arguments from both sides just as there were calm disagreements from both sides.  There was mud-slinging and there was praise.  And there were the children of this country that witnessed it all.

Children are impressionable, they do as they see and they say what they hear.  If you don't believe this, just ask any parent; things get repeated.  School-aged children repeat at school what they have heard at home.  Toddlers repeat what they have heard whenever it is most embarrassing for a parent.  Think about the things that you have said during this election.  Were they said in front of your children?  If so, were they things that your children should repeat or were they things that you hope that your children do not repeat?  Did you take this election as a chance to help your children grow as compassionate human beings or did you take this election as a chance to teach your children intolerance for other people's opinion?

I do not know the answers that you can give to those questions, but I know the answers that I can give.  I have three children, ages 9, 7, and 2.  My two-year-old will repeat anything, but does not understand most of what she repeats.  However, she can replicate moods.  She understands anger, frustration, and happiness.  I try everyday to teach her when it appropriate to feel each one of those emotions.  When to act on them and when to not act on them.  Sometimes adults need to be taught the same lessons. 

My 9 and 7 year olds are old enough to understand what we say and repeat it verbatim.  The things that they say at school, to their friends, to adults, and to the public in general are a direct reflection on us, their parents.  They will repeat what they have heard at home.  They will also carry the same attitude that they observe at home.  My children knew who we were voting for in this election, and they knew who their friends parents were voting for in this election.  They learned that not everyone had the same opinion, even their friends.  Instead of inciting intolerance in my children, I chose to teach them that people have differing opinions and that it is okay.  We are not all the same, we will not always have the same idea or opinion, but people should not be disrespected or taunted because they do not share your opinion.  I hope that I taught them that compassion and tolerance for other people should always be practiced.  Most of all I hope that I taught this to them not only by saying but by doing.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Children are Blessings Not Burdens

Lately, I have seen more and more advertisements in which parenthood is depicted as something that is an unwanted stress, something that we should complain about, and drink our way through.  This bothers me.  I am sure that may seem like a hypocritical statement coming from me since most of my blogs are griping about one thing or another, but the overall theme is that I enjoy my children and I feel very blessed to have them.  They are three human beings that I love more than anything in this world, and I would never want them to think otherwise.  That being said, there are times where I am stressed out and I gripe about it, but never are my children unwanted or motivate any drinking habits. 

A few days ago, my oldest daughter (who is nine) was watching Nick Jr. with my youngest daughter (who is two).  As many of you may know, Nick Jr. has changed its format in the past few months.  No longer can they boast of having no advertisements because now they do.  They have also changed the TV programming as of 9:00 pm CST to "NickMom."  In the beginning, I did not really see a problem with this until I saw the commercial for this.  Or maybe it would be better put that I did not see a problem with this until I saw the commercial through the eyes of my nine year old daughter.  The commericals for NickMom air during the regular hours of Nick Jr., all day long so that children who are watching Nick Jr. can see them.  These commercials have an anti-children sentiment that my nine year old picked up on.  "Why do you like it better when we are in bed, don't you like spending time with us?" was the first question that she hurled at me.  There were several others, all of them which made me feel terrible.  That commercial made her feel like parents (moms specifically) did not like being parents, that children were a burden upon their parents, and that parents would rather them not be around.  Is this really what we want our children to think or feel?  I am sure that some of you think that I am blowing this out of proportion, but think about this for a minute, let it sit with you and put yourself in your children's shoes.  How would this make you feel?  If it is even questionable, then it probably is not a good thing. 

It seems that today's world has made it ok for parents to seemingly not like parenting.  I know that parenting is not perfect, things happen; I write about those things and I find nothing wrong with that. What I have a problem with is not acknowledging that your children are blessings not burdens.  Today's world is hard enough without parents giving their children a self-esteem issue; parents should lift their children up, not tear them down (even unintentionally).

This is November, a month of giving thanks, and I plan to spend this month finding things for which to be thankful instead of things to gripe or complain about. It's a challenge for me, and I suggest we all challenge ourselves to 30 Days of Being Thankful (and not complaining).  I will go first: Today I am thankful for my family.  Please join me as I post for the next 29 days of things I am thankful for.  My goal is to be a happier, more optimistic person by the end of the month (just in time for the Christmas season!).  Please share with me what you are thankful for either by commenting on this blog post or on the Facebook page.  Also, feel free to share with friends, we could all use a little uplifting every now and then.

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Pinterest Wedding: Unrealistic Expectations

Pinterest....a place for people to develop the electronic hoarding habit and unrealistic expectations in every aspect of life.  Today's topic: Weddings.  Pinterest has boosted wedding planning to a whole new level, making the moment of engagement and the wedding seem more important that the actual marriage itself.  In my opinion, the following are the most ludicrous of the pins of expectations that I have seen on Pinterest.

  1. Rules for getting engaged (according to someone on Pinterest who obviously has not been engaged or married): "Make it a complete surprise."  For whom?  The girl?  Real life: the girl has the guy so manipulated that he is the one surprised when he pops the question because even he didn't know he was going to do it.  "Let the best friends help with the ring.", because the girl has probably already picked out the ring and had the jeweler lead him to it.  "Get somebody to catch it on camera."  Let's see, unless the previous rule of making it a complete surprise has been broken, the guy will not do this.  The only way this is happening is if the girl planned it.  But seriously, the money for the photographer could have gone toward the ring.
  2. That brings me to the ring.  There are pins of rings, beautiful rings, that only a very wealthy person could afford.  What does this do to the guy if this is what you are expecting?  You haven't even gotten married (or engaged) yet and you are already projecting unrealistic expectations on him and your future.  Save the extra money for your future together.
  3. Wedding dresses and fantastically fattening food.  These two do not mix.  If you eat all of that food that you are pinning, you most certainly will not fit into that wedding dress even if you do all of those workouts that you pin after salivating over the food.
  4. "Cutesy" ways of asking friends to be your bridesmaid.  News flash: your closest friends already know you are engaged because you have told them that he was going to ask you to marry him because rule or no rule, you knew about it.  Because this is the case, if you don't ask them to be in your wedding, you will no longer have friends.  So, save your time and money and just verbally ask them, they will still say "yes" even if there is no poem about your friendship (which will probably make some of them cringe on the inside anyway).
  5. Elaborate wedding decorations, favors, etc.  Keep your wedding simple and sweet, your husband and you are the only ones who will remember it (mostly because a photographer was appropriately hired for this occasion), and no one else really cares how elaborate it is.  Focus more on the marriage, not the wedding.

Disclaimer: I am not a cynical person, I just think that the planning for weddings spiral out of control, and leads the couple down an unrealistic path of unattainable expectations that life has to be like a magazine or movie or fairytale.  Plus, most guys will not be that in to planning for the wedding, even if they pretend, so give them a break.

Pinned Image

Thursday, October 11, 2012

The Great Masterpiece

This has not been a normal week for me.  Not that any week is "normal," I forgot what that word meant a long time ago.  Last week my 2 year old decided to leap out of her crib like she was Super Woman or something.  Sure, I was a little sad that the last kid was now out of the crib, but now gone forever was my chance to put her in her crib while I did something anything.  There is no way to contain her now, she can do anything (even though I can't, believe me, the irony is not lost on me). 

No longer is her naptime a time for me to do watch Nate Berkus or The View or clean the house (let's be honest, I like to watch tv when it isn't on NickJr.).  It is now a time when I have to stop her from jumping on her big-girl bed or climbing out of it or pulling pictures off the wall (different story for a later time).  Now I have to watch her on the video monitor instead of watching Nate.  Because the big mistake is not watching her, which I found out the other morning.

While I was cleaning the house the other morning (yes, cleaning, not sitting with my feet up in the air on the recliner watching tv), my two year old was creating a masterpiece.  While I thought she was sleeping, she was making a blue piece of artwork on her yellow walls.  Let me pause here to interject that she has no paint or crayons in her room.  The day before, at her big sister's school, she had been giving a cupcake with blue icing.  That's right people, I said blue.  Her great masterpiece on her yellow wall was made with her very own blue poop.

The end....there is nothing more I can say after that.

Funny Family Ecard: Wife to husband: 'Hi, you won't believe what YOUR child just did. Please come home and deal with her.'

Friday, October 5, 2012

Can You Party Like It's 1995?

Recently I have been making fun of my husband because it has been 20 years since he was a senior in high school (for the record, it has only been 17 years since I was a senior in high school; I am much younger).  But all of this teasing has gotten me thinking about what life was like 17 years ago (for those math whizzes out there, the year would be 1995).  I started talking to my children about it, and they are certain that they could not survive (no DirecTV, no internet, no DVD or DVR?!).  Question is, could I still survive in 1995?

In 1995, I drove a car with a car phone (I had just upgraded from a "bag phone," which plugged into the cigarette lighter...anyone remember those?).  Notice I did not say a "cell" phone, those came much later.  These were very inconvenient when you were waiting for a phone call because you actually had to stay in the car, with the ignition on.  You couldn't walk around talking to someone and no one had ever heard of "texting."  Plans for the night had to be made in person or on the car phone or, Heaven forbid, on the house phone.  Of course, way back then no one called it a "house" phone or a "land" line, it was simply just the "phone."  Oh, and many of those house phones still had cords attached to the receiver (so did the car phone).  If you had a "cordless" house phone, the antenna was so long that you could not sit comfortable up against anything because the antenna would bend.

We did not have an internet connection on our home computer (assuming you had a home computer at this point since the "mouse" for the computer was a relatively new thing).  That's right, you read that correctly, no internet.  That also meant no email, no chatting online, no blogging, and (gasp) no social media.  We had no idea what was going on with everyone we had ever met in our entire lifetime every second of their day.  That is unless we were sitting next to them in class where we passed notes and the teacher picked them up and pinned them on the bulletin board for everyone to see.  That's how everyone found out everything about you way back then.  And to think we were still stupid enough to pass those things day after day.

There was no concept of taking a picture of what you were doing and immediately posting it online for the world to see.  Come to think of it, that was probably a good thing.  When we took pictures, it was with a camera, and not a digital one.  These cameras actually had film in them that we had to get developed, no instant gratification of knowing that it was a terrible picture of you and should be re-taken. 

However, the worst part (according to my modern children) is that you could not just download a song whenever you wanted and have it immediately.  "What did you do when you wanted to hear a song?!"  Well, obviously over-privileged child of mine, I listened to the radio with a tape in the tape recorder so that I could press "record" when they finally played the song.  "What's a tape recorder?" I gave up, they don't get it.

The best part about 1995: When having a conversation with someone, you were actually having a conversation with that one person, not the people texting you or them, the people talking to you on social media, or the people emailing you.  No wonder we all have ADD, we do too many things at one time.

So, the question is, could you party like it's 1995?  Could you trash your cell phone, your email, your social media, your DVR?  For a week, could you do it?  Or would you have the DTs?

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Mommy Wars: Really, Are You Just Bored?

I am starting to think that some mothers are bored.  Do not ask me how this happens, because I too am at a loss of how this could occur.  However, there is evidence, hard evidence, that this is happening.  And maybe it has always been this way, but we have just never experienced it to this degree because we have never before been in a social media age as we are today.  Some of you reading this may have already guessed what I am speaking to, others may be getting their hackles raised, and yet some of you may not know because you seriously do not care (I applaud these people, not because they do not care to read this, but because they do not take part in what I am about to discuss).

Let me start by saying that I am not perfect, nor do I pretend to be (if you do not believe me, check out the rest of my blog because I am certainly not winning any Mother of the Year Awards).  However, there are some mothers out there who find pleasure in disrespecting other mothers because they have different views, opinions, or ideas from them.  I am not trying to start a heated argument, nor will I tolerate one on my blog, but this has to be said: It is ok for people to have different opinions.  As a matter of fact, people should have different opinions.  If everyone were the same, this world would be completely boring.

Why has it become a big deal if one person is a stay at home mom and another mother works outside of the home?  Why does it matter that one mother chooses to feed her baby formula and her neighbor exclusively breast feeds?  Does it really matter that this person that you talked to in the grocery store chooses to cosleep while you choose to put your baby in a crib in their own room?  Why are mothers arguing over these things?  Why does it matter what Sally Joe down the street does?  Can't we all just get along?  When did we become so closed minded that no one with a differing opinion can exist (peacefully anyway)?  Look in the mirror, are you guilty of this?  If you are, what is your problem?  Who made you the supreme expert on how everyone should raise their child?  As long as the child is healthy and happy, people should back off of each other.  Smile and waive at someone instead of glaring and pointing at them. 

My first child slept with us in the bed, however my other two did not.  I was a working mother when I had my first two children, but am now a stay at home mom.  My children, all three, were formula fed, and they are healthy and smart.  I drank coffee when I was pregnant with the last two, but did not touch caffeine when I was pregnant with the first one.  According to today's "mommy rules," I should be at odds with myself because I did not agree with myself on each child.  I have too many other issues to deal with, I do not need to kick myself (or other people) over what I did or did not do or what I plan to do or do not plan to do.  Focus on other things, people, like how do drive...have I talked about my carpool road rage lately?  Now that is a valid issue...

Monday, August 20, 2012

Who Needs Sleep, Tell Me What's That For?

Sleep, a word whose meaning escapes my children.  According to the dictionary, "sleep" means to be dormant and inactive.  Someone should give my children a vocabulary lesson because between the three of them, I get no sleep.  There is someone constantly coming into our room during the night with different "problems."  They need to get this synchronized so that at least we could get everyone taken care of all at one time instead of making this an all night long affair.  Oh, and when I say "we", I mean "me" because my husband is completely unaware of the drama being played out by his offspring as he snores his way through the complaints and the fake coughs in the wee hours of the morning as if they are competing for an Oscar (check here to see if your husband also suffers from HHS).

For the past decade, I have not had a complete night's sleep.  My kids never sleep, at least not on the same choreographed night.  Someone is always sick, and there is always an alarm going off when I finally get the opportunity to drift off to sleep.  This makes the day following one of those nights an awesome experience enhanced by a cup of coffee that seems to be super glued to the palm of my hand (you've seen the beer hats, I need a coffee one).  Anything that comes out of my mouth probably does not make complete sense and sounds as if I have been drinking; only I haven't had that luxury because someone has to take care of everyone and that someone would be me.

There have been days when I wanted to call in sick, because I was so tired, to see if someone else could play the role of "Mommy" for the day.  I picture it playing out like it does in the soap operas that I no longer have time to watch even if I did DVR them: there would be an announcer stating, "The role of 'Mommy' will be played today by blah blah blah."  I am sure my kids would freak out, inciting nightmares that would cause more sleepless nights and probably several therapy visits. 

Motherhood, you don't get paid for it, but it can be a beast of a job while being the best job. 

**Note to new first-time mothers: If your baby is sleeping through the night, wonderful (no sarcasm intended)!!!  Just know that when your child is mobile and not in a baby bed, she will not sleep through the night anymore, and will aimlessly wander around your house looking for ways to wake you up....make sure the knife and scissor drawers are locked, there is no standing water in your bathtub (on second thought, the toilets should be on lock down too), all household cleaners are out of reach (but, if you have a climber, just lock them up too...the cleaners, not your child), all outside doors are locked and pray that your child doesn't know how to unlock them and wander outside in the night while you lay peacefully sleeping (or just get a house alarm, that way you will know if anyone opens a door or a window).  Now, sleep well!  This is why I do not sleep, maybe I should seek therapy... - I will pretend to be asleep until Mommy goes to sleep. I will then cry so that she has to wake up. I will play this game all night long because I can...

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

What NOT to do in the Car Pool Line: Are You an Offender?

Over the past four years, I have had the pleasure of sitting in six different car pool lines for an approximate total of 23,760 minutes which is 396 hours or 16.5 days (based on spending 33 minutes a day, 22 days a month for 9 months a year).  Wow, what I could do with all that time!  Not the point.  The point is that I have observed a lot of different people in car pool lines.  Which means I have observed a lot of people doing weird and/or annoying things in car pool lines.  21 days of my life so far spent in car pool lines....maybe I should have written a blog on that.  But I'm not, I am writing about what you should NOT do in a car pool line.  Remember, other people can see you....

1.  Do not pick your nose.  I know, I am going with the obvious one first.  We tell our kids not to pick their nose at school, and yet, there you are, their parent, picking your nose in front of all of their friends' parents.  Not the classiest move you have ever made, nor the most sanitary.

2.  Stop singing at the top of your lungs.  Especially if your windows are down.  Odds are, you are not a great singer, even if you think you have a chance of winning American Idol, so the rest of us do not want to hear your rendition of a ballad or, better yet, "Baby Got Back" (true story, I have heard someone do this in the car pool line).  If you must sing, make sure your windows are indeed up, and use your inside voice.

3.  Do not bring vomiting children.  If you have another child in the car with you who has to open the door to vomit outside the car more than once (I'm giving you some wiggle room here with "once" because maybe you did not know they were sick before you got in the car pool line), leave that child at home with another care giver.  If that is not an option, get to the school early enough to check out your other child so that the person behind you in the car pool line do not have to watch a continuous reenactment of something they never wanted to watch.

4.  Do not be disrespectful of other people's time.  If your child is ALWAYS the last kid out to the pick up line, do not continuously be the first person in the car pool line so that everyone else waits an extra ten minutes DAILY so that your child can lolly gag through the school.  Some people are so rude and clueless.

5.  Do not keep your doors open.  If your car is clean on the inside, keep the automatic doors shut in the car pool line.  I am sincerely glad (and mostly jealous) that your car looks like it just got detailed, but keeping your automatic doors open everyday in line is just showing off.  Close your doors, you are making the rest of us look bad (read Ode to My Minivan here).

6.  Do not shout profanity and use ugly gestures to the other parents.  Why?  Because you have to see them EVERYDAY.  These are the people that you will be spending at least 16.5 days of your life with, I don't think that causing tension is the smartest way to go here.  However, a little horn blowing never hurt (car pool road rage: read about it here).

7.  Do not fall asleep.  At least without setting the alarm clock on your cell phone.  I get so frustrated when parents fall asleep and do not know that the car pool line is moving.  Horn honking does not always work in the case.  If you are the car behind this moron, and honking is not working, get your un-showered self out of your car (I don't care who sees that your clothes don't match), and knock on the clueless snoozing  person's window.  Hopefully it will shame them into setting an alarm next time.

8.  Do not get so into your reading that you do not know what is going on around you.  If you are one of those people who checks out on the world around you when you are reading, this is probably not the best way to pass your time in a car pool line.  If the school could blow up and you wouldn't notice, then you should probably put the book down.  If little aliens jump out of the car in front of you and start dancing on every one's care and you wouldn't notice, then you should probably put the book down.  If an entire car line can disappear in front of you because they have already picked up their kids and a gazillion car horns are honking at you and you wouldn't notice, then you should probably put the book down.  Just saying....

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Top 5 Pet Peeves

Pet peeves.  Everyone has them.  Even those of you who pretend that you don't (which is annoying because we all know you do).  Not that long ago I asked my readers what their pet peeves were.  Amazingly enough, a lot of them were the same ones that I have, but to spare you the long list, I have narrowed the list down to the top five.  So, without further ado, here are the Top 5 Pet Peeves:

1.  People over the age of 18 (and honestly those younger are annoying too) saying "like" every other word.  It like makes them sound like so young and even like uneducated.  Like, you know what I, like, mean?  All that was missing from those two sentences was someone snapping and smacking their gum.  Which leads me to Pet Peeve #2....

2.  People who do not know how to chew gum.  I am glad that you enjoy your gum, but I do not enjoy seeing it in your mouth or hearing you smack it.  Spit it out or close your mouth.

3.  Adults still trying to be "cool."  High school is over people, and for some of you, it is more in the past than for others.  So for the love of all that is good and holy, stop trying to be so cool because nobody cares.   Girls (um, I mean women), looking down your nose at people because you think that you are better than them was eye-rolling in high school, embarrassing in college, and now it makes you look down right stupid, get a life.  Again, no one cares, we are too busy being un-cool to our kids.  Oh, and guys, if you have to do the "head toss" to get your hair out of your eyes and you are over the age of 25, get a haircut because you are not fooling anyone about your age (or your hair loss).

4.  One-uppers.  You know these people, there is one in every crowd.  You cannot tell a story without them trying to top it with one of their own.  If your kid took off his diaper and repainted the walls with his poop, then their kid did that plus painted the floor with it and projectile vomited all over the ceiling.  I am not sure why some people want to have the worst child in the group, but some do.  It is one thing to feel sorry for someone and tell them that your child has done something similar, but to ALWAYS have a "better" story is a bit frustrating.

5.  People who do not know how to have a face to face conversation.  They are too busy looking around or past you.  Or they are too busy with their phone and will not stop playing with it while trying (ineffectively I might add) to have a conversation with the person in front of them.  Technology has made some people socially stupid.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Life Gets Hard After Kindergarten

School has started for my two oldest children.  To be a little more specific, the fake illnesses and car pool line rage has started.  There is nothing like hundreds of parents trying to drop off their elementary students at school to spark a road rage like nothing seen on the highway.  To be honest, I would have no problems with the car pool line if it were not for the clueless people who refuse to follow the rules or are so lost in their own world that they do not realize that there are other people in the world around them that would like to coexist without being ticked off to the point of screaming and honking their horn.  Not that I ever do the latter, well, much anyway.  Although that has happened, you can read about that here

The first day of school is important to every child.  For the parents too if we really want to be honest.  Probably even more so for us.  No matter how much some of us like to pretend that we cannot wait for our kids to go back to school at the end of the summer, let's face it, it is easier for them to be at home.  When they are at home there is no homework to check over, no school anxieties to deal with, no getting up at the butt crack of dawn to take our kids somewhere that we just have to turn around and wait in a car  pool line for an hour to pick them up.  See, summer is easier.  During the summer, I did not have to peel one child off of my leg to leave her somewhere or have the other child disown me publicly.  Summer was easier on my ego....well, if we leave the having to wear a bathing suit at the pool part.

My middle child started first grade this week, and, after dealing with school anxiety in kindergarten, we were all hoping that first grade would be different.  It appeared to be as she was really excited about the first day of school.  Then I had to peel her off of my leg in order to leave her in the classroom.  Great, another year of fake illnesses coming up.  My oldest child is now in the fourth grade.  I attempted to walk her to her classroom, but she would only let me go as far as the front of the school.  I was completely disowned by my kid in front of the school.  Apparently, at least in front of the student body, I am not as cool as she thinks I am when we are listening to music and dancing around the kitchen while cooking dinner.  Then again, she did tell me that I was weird then too.  I might as well face it, I think I have lost all of my cool points with her.  The first day of school should really be followed by a support group of mothers at the local bar where margaritas are on the house.

Oh, but the first day of school got even better, I still had to pick them up.  The car pool line was insane, full of people who obviously did not know their head from a hole in the ground (really, these people should be a little embarrassed at this point).  These people even thought they should be in the car pool line a full hour before school was out!  Seeing that I did not feel that way (and I am sure that my two-year old that had to tag along thanked me for that), I was really far back in the line which did not bode well with my first grader since she asked me to be near the front of the line.  When asked how her day had gone, she replied with "great."  A sense of relief flowed through me.  Then I was slapped with "well, except...."  Apparently first grade, unlike kindergarten, did not have a long enough lunch time (although this child takes two hours to eat a sandwich, so I am not sure how long "enough" really is) so she did not get to eat her lunch [she only ate the grapes], recess was not long enough because she "didn't even get hot" (although it was like 110 degrees outside), and there was no nap time (ouch, I hear her on that one).  The good part of her day was that they sorted colors with Skittles, and the teacher let them bring home the candy to eat.  She then said, "but I guess I can't eat those since we can't have candy."  After learning her assumption was correct, she grumpily said that they did not have snack time either but they would tomorrow and could only bring fruit. 

First grade girl was still scowling out of the window when the too-cool-for-me fourth grade chick got in the van.  Apparently her day was great, but there was a homework assignment for me.  Wonderful, love these, they make my day (said no mother ever who was in her right mind).  My assignment, should I chose to accept it (which, by the way, I am thinking of not), is to write an essay about my daughter so that the teacher can know more about her.  Somehow I am thinking that simply writing "she is wonderful because she is mine" is not going to be acceptable or helpful.  It was then that my disappointed-she-is-not-still-in-kindergarten first grader sighed while looking out the window and made the intuitive statement, "Life sure does get harder after kindergarten."  If she only knew... maybe she should read my blog. - The first day of school should be followed by a mom support group at the local bar.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Summer Procrastinations: It Was Over So Fast

Summer is almost over.  In just three short weeks school will start again.  Which means only one thing: I have to cram a whole bunch of summer fun that I have failed to do thus far into three weeks.  Oh joy.  Procrastination at it's finest, I even procrastinate on the fun stuff.  I can either call it procrastination or failure.  I prefer procrastination, even though I have been procrastinating some things for years, I refuse to call it failure.  Here is my short list of "Summer Procrastinations."  I refuse to call it "Summer Failures" because hopefully there will be more summers to make up for the things that I have not done this year (which is something I say every year).

1.  Museum Procrastination.  Ok, so I did take them one time, but I had planned on taking them to more than one.  The one day that we did go was fun, we even had a picnic.  Then I got lazy and did not want to drive the ten miles it took to get there and watch a dozen other kids interact terribly with one another because apparently their parents never taught them how to behave in public.  Or they do not care because they are too busy talking to each other or playing with their phone.  Meanwhile my kids are unable to see the exhibit because I am not on the anxiety medication that the other parents seem to be on that allows them to not care that their children are climbing over each other, the exhibit, hanging from the ceiling, or trying to climb over the glass wall at the alligator exhibit.  True story, I actually pulled a kid off of it for fear of him falling in.  The thanks I received was an irritated mother whose conversation I had interrupted.  Maybe I should have told her I was sorry because I did not know that she wanted her kid to be gator bait.

2.  Swimming Pool Delay.  We belong to a swimming pool that we pay for monthly (as in every month of the year).  This is the second summer that we have belonged to it, and I can count on my two hands how many times we have actually been to the pool in both of those summers.  I had good intentions, I really meant to take the kids every day this summer that the pool was open.  Then the ear infections and sinus infections happened and that goal became a distant dream.  Not to mention it is really time consuming to pack all of the stuff that three kids (and myself) need for the pool and drive the eight miles out to the pool.  Next week we will try to remedy that, but I am sure that it will rain all week.  No matter that it has not rained but about two days all summer, the clouds will come as soon as I plan to spend the next three weeks at the pool.

3.  "Fun Things To Do with your Kids in the Summer" as deemed by Pinterest.  Ok, well, anything that involves "Pinterest."  The word "Pinterest" should have been enough there to explain the procrastinations.  Pinterest, by design, is a place where we pin our good intentions and then never do them because they are just so detailed.  Yet, there we are, day after day, pinning things that we will never get around to which will just make us feel inadequate compared to the people who actually completed these pins.  Who are these people anyway, would you please raise your hand?  there should be a website to commend those who actually complete more than ten pins on Pinterest.  Why is it again that we log onto Pinterest?  For a swift kick of reality that we suck as people because we aren't as crafty, tidy, or organized as we should be?  Our houses aren't fabulously decorated "for just a few dollars because I can make something that someone else threw out look fabulous in just a couple of minutes with things you can find in your own home" nor are they so wonderfully organized "in just a few minutes of your time each day" because let's be honest, we had rather spend the time pinning these fabulous ideas than actually implementing them.  As far as the food goes, who has time to cook every single pin that is pinned on Pinterest?  But in case you want to, follow this board and this board because one has great food and the other is funny.  Laughing reduces calories so it is a win-win.

4.  Read more books.  Maybe that should have been "pretend" to read more books and then this would not have to be on the list.  My kids have read, a lot actually because I instituted my "mandatory reading time", read about that here.  I, however, have been distracted.  Writing two blogs during that time takes awhile (see my other blog here).  Ok, I will be honest, my blogs have suffered too (but of course you know that since you read my blog, I have not posted nearly as much).  There have been distractions.  Jessica Simpson had her baby, Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise broke up, the Kourtney Kardashian baby-watch was happening, Reality Steve was discussing The Bachelorette spoilers (which I am still waiting to find out if it is going to be Arie or Jef, but let's be real, it should have been Sean); it has been a busy summer.  I did, however, get one book read (other than a cookbook).  I just finished it last night (mostly so I could write that in this post, but it still counts).

5.  Exercise with the kids every morning.  When the summer started, the kids and I were pumped up about walking and jogging every morning.  We did that one morning.  One.  We did not even attempt for the second morning.  That says a lot about our will power.  It says more than I am willing to say out loud.  However, in our defense, on that morning it was humid and we all have asthma (well, 2, maybe 3, out of 4 of us do), the middle child fell down and scraped her knees all up (which in the world of a 6 year old was a very dramatic tragedy), the now-2-year-old was cranky, the now-9-year-old was hot, and my knee hurt.  Ok, let's face it, we prefer to be in the air conditioning when it is over 100 degrees outside.

So there you have it, my top 5 list of summer failures, um, I mean procrastinations.  The actual list is longer, but I do not want everyone to know all of my flaws... Now to go take care of the new puppy that my husband decided to get us this summer, which is my main excuse for not being able to get anything done this summer. - Between Pinterest, TomKat's split, the Kardashian baby watch, Reality Steve's Bachelorette spoilers, and the weather, I procrastinated the summer away...

Saturday, July 7, 2012

These Things Happen at Your House Too, Right?

This week has put me through the ringer, shook me off, and shoved me back through.  A holiday in the middle of the week was cruel, it made the week extra long.  As a matter of fact, this week was so long that I kept thinking that it was two weeks, which only made matters worse.  I love my kids, I love being with them, but they sincerely and thoroughly kicked my butt this week.

My youngest daughter will be two in less than two weeks, but she has reached her two-year-old personality early.  So far this week she has learned to climb up on top of her dresser by stacking books, blocks, boxes, anything her little hands can pick up.  Serious hazard, I know.  But do you know why she wants on top of her dresser?  To get the remote controls to her tv because she is convinced that they are phones and she desperately wants to call Henry the Octopus from The Wiggles.  Now, I am all for a kid being a fan of something, but this octopus thing has me at my wits end.  She wears her shoes on her hands (because Henry wears shoes on all of his "hands"), refuses to wear them on her feet and it is beginning to draw some attention when we are in public.  She has taken it one step further at night now and pulls her arms out of the top of her pajamas (they are long sleeves) so that the empty sleeves of her pajamas appear to be two extra arms.  And she stands in her bed and sings "Move Your Arms Like Henry."  I am sure every two year old thinks they are an octopus, right?  Except last night she did not do this.  Last night she learned how to take all of her clothes off (diaper included).  I had to re-dress her two times last night while she kicked and screamed because she did not want clothes.  Great, we have a streaker.  This is also the kid that I caught brushing her hair with the toilet brush earlier in the week right before we had to go to the store.  True story.  My gag reflexes still work while reading that sentence. 

My six-year-old daughter has a fixation with HGTV.  Again, I am sure that this is completely normal, I am sure that most six-year-olds want to redecorate their room, bathroom, house, etc instead of playing with friends.  This daughter is usually the one who is the "pleaser," she never wants to rock the boat.  Imagine my surprise and horror when this child had a meltdown in Home Goods because I would not buy her a pair of new lamps for her room, not the toys from the toy section, but a nice pair of glass lamps.  I need to stage an intervention, she is cut off from HGTV.

My nine-year-old (just had a birthday this week) has assumed the role of the "boss."  She knows everything and I know nothing.  I was prepared for this in about three years, not now.  It is a constant battle for the last word.  My husband says she is just like me so I should not be surprised.  Nobody has seen him since he made that statement, I don't know what happened to him, I swear (just kidding....).  This kid is really into the Food Network and now considers herself a food critic (wonderful).  This is not always a bad thing since I also have a food blog (The Organic Southern Mommy) and I constantly ask their opinion, but feeling as if I am on the show Chopped  (or maybe it is Hell's Kitchen) when I fix her a bowl of cereal or a sandwich is beginning to be a bit much.  I may stage an intervention for her as well.

The one thing I had working for me this week is that I have made a mandatory "Reading Time" every afternoon for an hour and a half.  That is right, ninety minutes of pure peace and quiet every day when the almost-two-year-old is taking a nap.  In my opinion, that has been my moment of genius for the summer and I should be given some kind of award for that... - If we all work together, we can make Mommy go crazy and that might be fun to watch.

Monday, July 2, 2012

You Brought Home a What??!!

I have not written a blog post in a few weeks.  Things have been busy around here, the kids have been sick (shocking), we have been out of town, my knee is messed up, oh, and my husband brought home a dog.  You read that right, a dog, a six week old puppy.  Without asking if I would like one.  Ok, well, let's be completely honest, he had hinted about a dog the night before he actually brought one home, and I basically told him that I would kill him if he went through with that decision.  Apparently he did not listen, or did not care, because the next afternoon we had a dog.

The problem is that I could not tell him to take it back because all of the kids went nuts over this little ball of fur, and it was going to make me look like the bad guy.  Oh, it is a Yorkie (cut the "awwws", I know they are cute, but I was not in the market for another dog).  You see, we have a dog; a four year old weenie dog that bites anyone that comes to visit.  And we have a cat.  And an almost two-year-old; you see where this is heading, right?  I get to potty train and house train for the whole next year, happy summer/fall/winter/spring to me.  Apparently our house did not have enough drama for my  husband, he felt the need to go out an purchase some more.  And on that note, we could have gone on a weekend family vacation for what he paid for that dog.

Now, my husband promised that he would take care of the dog, but he is at work for a good twelve hours of the day, so guess who gets to take care of the dog for half of the day?  The one who did not want another dog in the first place: me.  And guess who gets to take care of the dog for the second half of the day in which it is asleep because it is nighttime?  My husband, the one who thought having a "friend" for our other dog would be fun.  I have news for him, our other dog did not want any friends, she was just fine terrorizing the cat.

I will have to admit that the little fur ball was winning me over with his cuteness before he pooped on my shoe while I was wearing it.  Did I mention that they were flip flops?  I will let your imagination take you from there.  Meanwhile, my husband had the audacity to get aggrivated when the dog wanted out at 4:30 one morning because he had just taken him out two hours before (to his credit, he usually takes the dog out in the middle of the night, a little because I refuse and mostly because I put the whinning dog's crate on his side of the bed so the dog could wake him up).  These are the times that I have to remind him that he brought this drama, I mean dog, home, and I get up at least three times a night with our almost two-year-old who refuses to sleep continuously.

For you dog lovers out there, I am not being mean about the dog,  Most of the time I agree that he is a cute little piece of fur (he is a teacup Yorkie, he will always be tiny), but then that piece of fur starts whining and does not wait for someone to get him out of his cage before he poops in it, so I am left to clean out the cage while my husband takes the dog out.  I might rather take the dog out at 3 am than to clean out his cage.  The dog is cute, I think he is great, but my husband is still sleeping in the doghouse for this one...

Advice for husbands: if your wife tells you she will kill you if you make a certain decision and your friends try to talk you out of it by telling you that your wife is going to kill you, it is probably not a good, sound decision to go ahead and do it anyway. - Is there not enough drama in this house with 3 kids? Do you really feel as if you need to add to it??!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

There Should be a "Fathers Take Your Toddler to Work" Day

My two older kids are gone this week, spending a week at their grandparents.  In theory, this did not sound like a bad idea aside from the fact that I was going to miss them.  For future reference, this was a bad idea.  Why?  Because those two kids keep my one-year-old entertained.  Now they are not here to do it so guess who gets to be the entertainment all day long?  Me.  Just me.  Oh, this is also the week that my husband is having to work late after work.  How convenient for him.

I did not realize that I could not get anything done with a toddler around, I mean nothing.  My oldest child was the last toddler that was here by herself and she was pretty self-sufficient.  By the time my middle child was born, my oldest played with her while I did household chores.  Now they entertain the youngest one.  Except this week because they are not here and that is not happening.  This has turned into an exhausting job.  I wonder if it is that hard for the other two kids?  If it is, I should pay them, they should get paid for this kind of work.  No, never mind, that means that it would be like having child labor and that is illegal so I guess they will have to go on doing it for for free. Come to think of it, maybe that means they shouldn't have an allowance either since it is supposedly based on the amount that they help out around the house.  Hmmm....I think I will look into that.  I could use their allowance money to buy a lock for my closet door so that I can sit there in peace for five minutes before they figure out how to pick the lock.

My husband actually asked me [last night] if I planned on cleaning the house any time this week.  True story, it happened, he asked that as he was eating the dinner that I cooked for him while having an almost-two-year-old wrapped around my leg the entire time. The amazing part is that he is still alive to tell about it.  But all kidding aside, have you ever tried to clean the house with a toddler following you around?  That person that made that ecard that has been going viral on the web is right, "Cleaning the house with the kids home is like trying to brush your teeth while eating an Oreo."  After daydreaming of smacking him upside the head for saying something like that (did I leave out the part where he said "what do you do all day?", yeah, I know, hard to believe he is still breathing), I decided that maybe he was right (just stay with me here, he did apologize for saying it in the first place).  Maybe I should try to clean the house.  So this morning I set out on my mission which was immediately deterred by the fact that he decided to get our daughter out of bed before he went to work.  There went my hour of cleaning before she got up. 

My first goal was to vacuum.  I was pretty pleased with myself when I finished the kids' hall and she had not tried to "help."  Then I turned around to see her standing behind me with a half-empty bowl of pretzels.  The other half was crunched up on the floor along the hall that I had just vacuumed.  All she had to say for herself was "a trail!"  Apparently her sisters have read her Hansel and Gretel.  Sigh....

I did not give up, I picked up all of the pretzels and put up the ones she had in her bowl.  I continued to vacuum.  When I got to the den, she decided to play chicken with the vacuum cleaner and squealing "you didn't get me."  I decided to let her win and I went to clean the bathroom.  It was quiet, that kind of quiet that makes you really nervous when you usually have a house so loud that you wait to receive a ticket from the cops for noise pollution.  I found her putting broken pretzels on the floor in front of the vacuum cleaner.  Where is she getting these pretzels???  Is she hoarding them when I give them to her for a snack because she is afraid that I will never feed her again?  Side note:  if you are a parent who is shaking your head because I let my kids walk around with a snack, let me stop you here and say that you must be new to this whole parenting thing.  It's obvious because you think kids shouldn't walk around with a snack.  I used to think that too, but I gave up that way of thinking years ago and you should abandon it too, mostly for your own sanity.  Kids will mess up your house whether you let them walk and eat or not.  For the record, walking and eating is fine, drinking and driving is not.  Ok, back to the story.  I asked her what she thought she was doing and she told me that the "vroom cleaner" was hungry.  How do you argue with that?  No, seriously, how, because I tried and got no where so I gave up and vacuumed up pretzels for the third time today.

I finally got through vacuuming and moved on to mopping.  I mopped the kitchen and the bathrooms without incident.  Until the end.  I had just finished the master bath and it had dried when I saw it.  But she saw it first.  My husband had left his unfinished cup of coffee on the bathroom counter.  What follows was in slow motion.  She grabbed the cup to "hand" it to me, which means she threw it to me and yelled "catch."  Coffee flew up into the air as I dove for the cup.  I slipped on the coffee that had spilled all over the floor, but I caught the cup before it hit the floor.  My little angel merely said "good job Mommy" as she giggled and ran out of the room to, I'm sure, cause havoc elsewhere in the house.  I swear if my husband comes home tonight and says something like "are you going to do any laundry this week?"  he will be sleeping on the couch of his closest friend.... - Husband: Do you plan on cleaning the house any time this week? Wife: That depends, is it

Friday, June 1, 2012

Situations in Which You Can't Fix Stupid

Lately I have been the victim of thoughtless, self-consumed, and, in some cases, stupid women.  Well, not just me, my children have been as well, which really makes me irritated.  The most frustrating part is that these people were so oblivious to what was going on around them, they never even realized that I, among other people, were getting extremely annoyed.  Here are the situations:

Situation #1 "Swimming Pool"
I enjoy taking my children to the swimming pool (although the rain today gave me a much needed break).  I also make my children abide by the pool rules.  How do I know that they are following the rules?  Because I am paying attention to my children, not my cell phone.  However, there are some mothers who are covered in Crisco, frying on their towel, perusing their cell phones, and not paying attention to what their kids are doing.  Even when their kids are disrupting the entire pool environment and making babies cry.   Ignoring your child jumping in the pool at the shallow end right by the sign stating "No diving or jumping", producing tears from the children who are two and under who are being splashed, and resulting in their mothers to have to get out of the pool, will in the future warrant a bucket of cold ice water dumped over your head to wake you up from your phone daze.

Situation #2 "Inappropriate Conversationalist in a Public Place"
My children were excited to go to Barnes & Noble today in place of swimming since it was raining, and I was thankful to not have to endure the rude mothers.  By the time I was done in the bookstore, I was missing the rude mothers from the pool.  After the kids had spent what felt like two hours in the children's section, I coaxed them to come with me to the cookbook section (I wanted to get a new vegan cookbook; this is new for me, read that info here) which seemed to be pretty innocent, far away from the 50 Shades of Grey section.  My older two were sitting down on the floor reading their new books with my youngest in the stroller beside them as I skimmed through some books.  At first I was oblivious to the two chatty women who were standing beside us pretending to be looking at the books while sipping their ice coffees.  Then, as their voices got louder, I picked up on their conversation.  The content of their conversation would have made E.L. James blush.  Their conversation was completely inappropriate for young children to hear, it was actually inappropriate for anyone to hear.  So, after loudly stating how clueless, tactless, and rude some people were, we made our exit.  I would like to think that those women heard me, but they were so deep in their disturbing conversation that I doubt they even noticed.

Situation #3 Women With Large Purses in Restaurants
High chairs in restaurants are typically placed at the end of the table or booth.  And in those high chairs sit little kids.  Kids who did not ask to sit there, but have to because that is where the people in the restaurant put them.  When women with large purses, who do not pay attention to the fact that my child is sitting in the high chair, walk by and whack her in the head with their bag that would have been checked at the front door due to size if we were boarding an airplane, it makes my child cry.  She does not like to be hit in the head, most people do not.  Just do me a favor, do not give me the shocked look like you do not know what you did when I say, "Excuse you."  That just makes me want to hit you in the head with a piece of luggage and watch you cry.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Khloe Kardashian Talked to Me

Ok, so the title is not all this blog post is about, although it did happen, I just needed to get your attention so that you would read this post.  I do plan on telling the KK story, so make sure you stick around and finish reading this if that is the only reason you are here.  Who knows, you might laugh. 

I decided to take all three of my kids the swimming pool by myself.  I know, I am either crazy or amazing, and I can guarantee it is not the latter.  However, it was not that bad, even though I was sure those were the ingredients to a recipe for disaster.  Of course, there might have been reasons why this isolated even was not so terrible.  We actually missed the crowd, so there were no little kids splashing my one-year-old by doing cannon balls in the shallow end beside the "No Jumping in the Pool" sign while their moms, covered in oil, lay frying themselves on their towel beside the pool reading their phone and forgetting that they have kids that they are supposed to be watching.  Or maybe it is because my oldest can swim so there was a little less stress associated with her being in the water.  My middle child can sort of swim, but she is more interested in pretending to be a mermaid sitting on the steps.  Of course this is also the child who can be heard from the back of our house saying "kids, don't try this at home" followed by a loud crash and "ummm, I'm ok, but don't come back here," so she does need to be watched (constantly).  My one-year-old actually likes the water, so she did not scream at the water's cold temperature, that was me screaming.  I also took her stroller with us (I know, it seems like a strange concept at the pool, but keep reading), not because I wanted some place to put her when she got tired, but with three kids, the amount of things I had to bring to the pool would have required additional fees had I been checking baggage at the airport.

So even after I so graciously and selflessly took my offspring to the pool so that they would have a fun, memory-filled childhood, later (after we had gotten home) the older two had the nerve to tell me that they were "bored."  I do not know about you, but in my house that is a bad word.  Actually my middle child said the word while her older sister was trying to hurdle furniture to put a hand over her mouth to keep her from saying "that word."  I will not go into the details of what happened next, but I will just tell you that my baseboards in the bathrooms are now clean and my kids are no longer bored.  I am sure that made for a great memory.

As far as Khloe Kardashian goes, I tweeted her on Twitter, and she replied to my tweet.  So, see, I did talk to her.  Josh Wolf (you know, one of the comedians on Chelsea Lately) also responded to one of my tweets.  Sure, that is not a big deal to most people, and that is fine.  However, to this sleep deprived mommy who was sleeping on damp sheets because she realized that her kids put their wet bathing suits on her side of the bed but was too tired to change the sheets, it was a big deal and made my night.  Actually, that did not make my night, my one-year-old sleeping through the night for the first time since she was born made my night, but KK was a nice bonus. - So a famous person

Friday, May 25, 2012

Hi, My Name is _____, and I am a Fad Follower

I am a fad follower.  Sad, but true.  I jumped on the South Beach diet bandwagon back in '04 and the Sugar Busters diet in '00.  None of those lasted, but I took what I needed from them and learned some things in the process.  I've moved on.  Now I am on to organic foods, no dairy, and as little meat as possible (at most, three times a week).  I know, I know, it sounds drastic and impossible.  But is it?  We are on day 3 and we seem just fine (actually more than fine because I have lost 2 pounds, bonus). 

Here is how it started.  My kids (ages 8 and 6) were watching a farm show for kids with my one year old.  My six year old thought that the chickens were cute.  My eight year old wanted a pet pig.  Then we sat down to eat supper.  We were having chicken, some vegetables, and a salad (with bacon pieces).  My six year old asked if she was really eating a chicken like she just saw on tv.  When I told her yes, she started to cry.  My eight year old told her just to eat her vegetables and salad so she would not have to eat the chicken.  Then a conversation started about where bacon came from.  The salad was not eaten after that.  I had gotten through eight years of parenting and had never had these kind of questions from them (I had considered myself lucky).  So, with my one-year-old never eating anything, I decided to go buy a book on what to feed these kids who had obviously become adverse to eating animals that they wanted to pet.

I bought The Organic Nanny's guide to Raising Healthy Kids.  It was a great book, made a lot of sense, and it made me want to buy organic vegetables because the thought of the pesticides in foods was a little more that I wanted to ingest (or maybe I should have said digest).  I won't go into the specifics because you can look those up for yourself.  The amazing part of this is that I got my kids on board with me (well, they vetoed meat by themselves, but they got on the organic train with me).  The thought of going to the store and picking out the fruit that they wanted and the vegetables that they wanted was exciting for them (not such a great thrill for me, I hate grocery shopping, but I enjoyed the fact that they liked it).

Going organic and virtually meatless was easy because my husband and kids were on board.  The one that I was worried about was the no dairy.  My reasons for this were more health related than anything else.  Two of my children have chronic ear infections, one (and I am thinking as of lately two) has asthma, and they all have sinus issues.  There are studies to support that milk (dairy) might help contribute to these things.  All three of my kids had colic, and the younger two were switched to soy formula which appeared to stop the colic.  When they were switched to dairy milk at a year, they have seemed to develop gastrointestinal issues.  We have been at our wits end with ear infections (among everything else, if you have been reading my blog, you know what I am talking about), so cutting dairy from our diet seems like the smart choice at this point to see if it helps.

The first meal that I cooked that was completely organic and vegan was actually really good.  We did not even miss the meat, not even my husband.  (I will post the recipe for this meal)  The interesting part?  The kid (one year old) who never eats anything since she got off of her organic baby food (the only baby food she would eat), has actually eaten everything I have prepared since jumping on this bandwagon.  Maybe she was trying to tell us something all along.

All of the food that the kids chose at the store.