Saturday, July 30, 2011

I didn't need to see that "Post Baby Body"

Do yourself and favor and do NOT google the term "post baby body".  You might mistakenly think that it will give you links to articles about good exercise or dieting tips to get your body back after baby.  Or you might think it would lead you to sites that tell you what changes to expect after you have a baby.

If you think are wrong.

What you will get are lists of article after article about different celebrities' post baby bodies.  There will even be images of celebs in bikinis on the beach with a baby on their hip (that are sure to boost your confidence). 

My daughter is 6 months old and I can tell you now I sure as hell don't look like any of them.  Yes, I don't have the time to work out with a personal trainer on a daily basis.  I don't have a personal chef to prepare the perfect balance of low carb, high protein meals.  But somethings gotta give here.

How is it even physically possible to sport a completely toned stomach 4 weeks after having a baby?  (I thought that I was being ambitious trying to lose it by the baby's first birthday...and by "it", I meant the weight.)

How can Heidi Klum walk the runway in the bikini after having 4 children?  Ok God, she is beautiful, successful, and wealthy...can't you just give her some stretch marks or something?

Not only did I get blessed with stretch marks...I got this lovely skin condition on my face called chloasma or the "mask of pregnancy" with my second daughter.  It's fabulous.  Looks like I have the shape of Australia on my right cheek and my left side looks like a map of Caribbean islands.  Just a freakin' mess.  And I still have a cool thirty pounds to lose compounded from my last two pregnancies.

So when I see these chicks who lose the weight ridiculously fast and bounce right back, I feel both inspired and disgusted.  I can't help but get the feeling that my children will be in high school and I will still be using the "I had 3 children" excuse. 

But I will continue to try to work on my "post baby body"...I just won't be googling that phrase anytime soon.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Ready for Baby? Probably not...

Sometimes people ask, "Am I ready to have a baby?" or "Am I ready to have another baby?"

The answer is probably NO!  When is anyone ever completely ready to do that?  I am convinced that the very reason we have to carry a child for about 9 months is so we can mentally prepare ourselves.  And even then, you will still not be ready.  The baby will be born and you will bring him or her home from the hospital, and you probably STILL will not be ready.  But you will figure it out and make it work.  And everyone will be fine. 
I honestly believe that you can't wait until you feel completely ready for a child.  If that was the would probably just never have one.  And if having a baby is not for you, than that is fine too! 
I just always found it funny that we spend the majority of our lives trying NOT to have a child.  Then when you decide you are as "ready" as you are going to be, all you can think of is getting pregnant.  Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.  Sometimes you get pregnant right away, sometimes it takes way longer than you expected, sometimes it is a surprise, sometimes things don't go the way you wanted to and you have to start over.  Trust me folks, I have been in EVERY one of those situations.  I just always would tell myself that everything happens how it is supposed to happen.  But I could not help seeing the irony in the situation...the one thing you tried so hard to prevent becomes the one thing you want to happen more than anything. 
So I don't think you can ever know when you are "ready"...but I think when it happens, you will never imagine life without that child.
I did find a very funny series of "tests" that you can take part in to see if you are ready for a baby.  I will share it with you.  It gave me a good laugh... Enjoy!

written by Daniel Cortes @
Smear peanut butter on the sofa and curtains. Now rub your hands in the wet flower bed and rub on the walls.
Place a fish stick behind the couch and leave it there all summer.

Obtain a 55-gallon box of Legos. (If Legos are not available, you may substitute roofing tacks or broken bottles.) Have a friend spread them all over the house. Put on a blindfold. Try to walk to the bathroom or
kitchen. Do not scream (this could wake a child at night).

Borrow one or two small animals (goats are best) and take them with you as you shop at the grocery store. Always keep them in sight and pay for anything they eat or damage.

Obtain one large, unhappy, live octopus. Stuff into a small net bag making sure that all arms stay inside.

Obtain a large plastic milk jug. Fill halfway with water. Suspend from the ceiling with a stout cord. Start the jug swinging. Try to insert spoonfuls of soggy cereal (such as Fruit Loops or Cheerios) into the mouth of the jug while pretending to be an airplane. Now dump the contents of the jug on the floor.

Prepare by obtaining a small cloth bag and fill it with 8 to 12 pounds of sand. Soak it thoroughly in water. At 8:00 PM begin to waltz and hum with the bag until 9:00 PM. Lay down your bag and set your alarm for 10:00 PM.Get up, pick up your bag, and sing every song you have ever heard. Make up about a dozen more and sing these too until 4:00 AM.  Set alarm for 5:00 AM. Get up and make breakfast. Keep this up
for 5 years. Look cheerful.

Obtain a large bean-bag chair and attach it to the front of your clothes. Leave it there for 9 months. Now remove 10% of the beans.
Purchase a newspaper. Go home and read it quietly for the last time.

Find a couple who already have a small child. Lecture them on how they can improve their child's discipline, patience, tolerance, toilet training, and table manners. Suggest many ways they can improve.
Emphasize to them that they should never allow their children to run wild.
Enjoy this experience. It will be the last time you will have all the answers.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Background Music to My Life

As I was driving home this morning after a run, I noticed that I was listening to Pebo Bryson and Celine Dion's version of "Beauty and the Beast".  The sad part was not that it was on in the car (or should I say "van"), but that I had hardly even noticed it and I was actually singing along.  It was not on the was coming from the DVD player because my daughters have been watching this movie in the van for months.  Not that I make them sit in the van to watch movies.  When we are driving somewhere, they always have it on.  BUT...maybe that is not a bad idea.  I could set them up in the van with the movie and some snacks.  Hey, I would leave it running with the air conditioner on and I would leave my front door open so I could keep an eye on them from my sofa.  Hmmmm...something to think about.  But I am pretty certain that it is illegal.

So I was driving the short distance home and thinking to myself that this is basically the background music to my life lately.  Whenever we drive somewhere, I must listen to that movie...I bet I could recite each line and I know every word to every song.  That Lumiere is something else (Jerry Orbach was a genius).

Then when we are not in the van, I still have background music at home.  It is usually the kids playing (or arguing), a show on the Disney Channel or Nick Jr., or some children's music CD.  I was washing baby bottles the other day singing along to a very lively version of "I've Been Working on the Railroad".  The kids were dancing around and saying "DANCE PARTY"...I think it's time that I put on a little of my own music to show them a real dance party.

Just last night I was trying to read a book...and yes, it was Tori Spelling's Uncharted Territori.  But I need to get that baby back to the library by Friday and I am sure that other library-goers are anxiously awaiting its return.  There may even be a hold on that one.  It is a summer classic.  So anyway, I was reading it and I had to reread the same paragraph about 4 times because I was interrupted by my daughter.  It is pretty sad that I had to reread it more than is not like I was reading War and Peace or anything.  Finally, when I realized that my dream for her to just go back upstairs and continue playing with her Magic Kingdom castle with her sister was going to be unrealized, I gave in and put on her show.  I tried to get back into the book but I could not concentrate on Tori's retelling of her trip across country with her family and extra annoying and creepy husband.  Why?  Because the background music of my life was interfering...and it happened to be Dora, the Explorer at that moment.  I marked my page and closed the book...completely defeated.

Then my daughter sat right next to me and said, "Mommy, I want you to watch this with me" and she moved my arm so it was go around her shoulders.  It was so adorable and my distaste for Dora began to fade as we had the most quiet and peaceful 25 minutes of the day watching that show.  I definitely feel like the background music to my life has changed drastically in the past 6 or so years...but hey, I think I can deal with it.  And when I am out by myself cruising in the van, I can still sneak in a little Garth, George Strait, Dave Matthews, or Biggie.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

It's ALMOST too quiet...almost

My  two youngest daughters are napping and the oldest just went to my mom's.  It is so quiet...complete and utter peace.  I was just thinking, "It's almost too quiet...almost".  Then I started to think of things I could do with my free time.

1.  Take a shower
2.  Actually do something with my hair (Imagine that!)
3.  Watch mindless TV, namely something on TLC, Bravo, or E!
4.  Read my newest "novel" Uncharted Territori by none other than Tori that is some classic literature right there
5.  Paint my nails (because the state that they are in now is shameful).
6.  Finish folding laundry (and putting away the 2 loads from this morning)
7.  Clean the kitchen
8.  Water my plants (that are barely hanging on out there)
9.  Take a nap
10.  Have a glass and wine and relax

These are just 10 things that I thought of in about 2 I am sure the list could be endless.  It is is crazy what I can get done in a mere 2 hours now, because I honestly think that I will try to do most of what is on this list.  I make every last second of alone time (bliss) count!

What do you do when you get some free time to yourself?  I would love to hear so I can add it to my list for the next time (most likely months from now) that I get this opportunity.

Friday, July 22, 2011

And then there were 3...

In the beginning, anyone who has children was a first time parent.  Even Michelle Duggar had only one child at some point.  I really believe it's all relative.  This post is based on my experience having more than one child. 
When you have your first child, you are usually almost annoyingly more than well prepared.  The nursery is fully decorated with a bedding set (even though you discover that you can only use about 20% of the set, so the bumper and comforter that you just HAD to have collect dust).  You have every accessory with all the bells and whistles, clothes are already washed and put away neatly, and you have enough diapers for about 3 to 6 months.  The first night home from the hospital, you think, "what the hell do we do now?" You are exhausted when the baby hardly sleeps that night, although I am sure that they were wonderful in the hospital (news flash- MOST babies are good in the hospital...they are just as traumatized as you are by the birth experience).  However, you can squeeze in a nap or 2 during the day.  Most likely, you are inundated with visitors who bring gifts, cook you meals, and offer babysitting services. You carry a diaper bag stocked with every and anything that  is useless the baby might need...because I am sure you will need about 3 changes of clothes, 5 toys, 2 teething rings, a dozen diapers, diaper rash ointment, Tylenol, teething gel, wipes, and hand sanitizer for that 2 hour visit with a friend. 
And speaking of leaving the house with your first can generally still look acceptable.  You can put on some makeup and you have the time to do your hair so it looks at least like you at least took a comb to it.
With each passing day, you learn more and more and become more confident. 
Then, things start to go so smoothly that some people decide to have another child.  This could be relatively soon...or it might even be years after the first.  Whatever the case may be, along comes another baby.
You quickly realize that this is a whole different ball game...
You are pretty much already prepared for the second baby.  After all, you have the crib and many people just keep the nursery as is and put the new baby in there.  At first, you are lucky to get a few hours of sleep at night, and then napping the next day while the baby sleeps...that is almost comical rare.  It really doesn't happen too often. Why?  Oh, that's have another little person to think about this time.  You are not only making bottles and changing diapers, you are cooking lunch and potty training, or maybe still changing a second set of diapers.  It's double duty and double the insanity fun.
The baby might get a few new gifts, but most likely, it is hand me down city.  Especially if you have children that are the same sex (I have 3 girls, I am quite familiar with that).  You and your spouse are usually the ones that handle getting odds and ends that are needed with baby baby shower this time:(
You will still have visitors, but maybe not as many and I can tell you now...the babysitting offers will dwindle.
Then, after much practice and experience, you learn to handle 2 children quite nicely.  It is man on man defense, one child for each parent.  You get into a routine and all is well.
It is at some point after this that some people decide to take the plunge and have yet another baby.  Hey, what's the difference? You already have 2... 3 can't be that bad.  And to be honest, I mostly agree.
And then there are 3...
However, things with the 3rd are even more different.  It is definitely hand me downs for this little one (especially in my case with the 3rd girl).  They might get a few new things, mainly because the others have been discarded due to wear and tear. 
I can also tell you that with three, the babysitting offers are most likely a thing of the past few and far between.  And instead of the well stocked diaper bag that you carried with the first one, you might throw a few diapers and wipes in your purse this time.  You can now effectively make a bottle and feed the baby, while talking on the phone and making a grilled cheese.  Napping while the baby naps is just not going to happen not always an option.  And you generally look disheveled on an almost daily basis (unless you have to go out, and then maybe you can get 15 minutes to apply makeup and put your hair in a pony tail attempt to style your hair).   
There is definitely a progression from being a new parent to having 2 or more children...and it changes you as a person and your outlook on life.  Each child is unique and amazing.  And with each baby I have had, the day that they were born was a complete miracle.  Although you get more accustomed to having a baby and what it entails, in my opinion, it never gets old and you are always learning something new!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Sometimes "Yes" is Easier

If your child wants their fifth consecutive candy bar or they want to run with a knife or paint on your walls, you should definitely (I repeat, DEFINITELY) say "NO"! If they throw a complete tantrum in the middle of the store because they want a certain toy, you should NOT buy that toy.  If they cry because you did not give them what they want, you should not always (notice I said "always") give in...because then every time you say no, what will you have? A big crybaby!

However, there are many times when it is just a little easier to say "yes".  And I have convinced myself that it is perfectly acceptable to do this and give in...sometimes.
If you are making a dinner that you know your kids might not want to eat, and they want a bowl of cereal...let them eat cereal.  If they want chocolate milk instead of regular, big whoop.  Is it really going to hurt them to have some chocolate milk?  If they want to watch a movie on a beautiful day and you know they should be doing something outside (but you have a few things you could get done if they watch that movie), I say go for it.  If you go to the store and you tell them they can not get anything that day because you are just running in and out, but they ask for one little 59 cent candy bar at the check out and they have been good on the trip, why not?  When you are out at a restaurant and they want to eat a whole bag of M&M's while waiting for their dinner, then I say "whatever works".  You have to keep the peace, especially if you are at a crowded restaurant.  You don't want to get the evil eye from other completely unsympathetic, anything BUT understanding patrons.  Hey lady, don't go to Charcoal Pit if you are expecting a quiet, candlelit is a freaking ice cream place. But I digress, that is a story for another day.
My point here is that sometimes it is just so much easier to say "Yes".  Easier for you and for everyone else involved.   It does not mean you are a bad parent or a pushover.  It means you are doing the best you can to survive when you are expected to be on duty from sun up to sun down every single day. EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. 

Do you all agree? Is it easier to give in sometimes? I know I sure as hell think so...

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

I Love this website!

I am obsessed with the website
I mentioned it before in my posts about sunscreen, but you can search thousands of different cosmetics and find out the ingredients in them and any concerns about those ingredients.  Hopefully, one day all cosmetics will have to meet the same standards...but for now, you can check and see the best ones for you and your family on this site!!!

Monday, July 18, 2011

Household Items that I Couldn't Live Without

There are many items that I use around that house that I just LOVE.  I could not live without them.  Well, I am sure that I could...but it would make life a whole lot harder.  Here are my top five most used/most convenient/most enjoyable household items:

My Dust Buster- Now I know that these little guys were popular back in the 80s, but mine is still an everyday necessity.  I vacuum at least once, sometimes twice, a day.  I have a large dog that sheds, 3 children, and a home daycare.  So it should not come as a shock that I have quite a few messes to clean up on a daily, sometimes hourly, basis.  However, this makes it so much easier.  If I have already vacuumed but a child spills cereal on the floor, no problem. I get out my trusty dust buster.  If they proceed to walk on that cereal and smash it up...again, NO problem at all.  If they eat it off the floor before I get to it...well, then that's their problem.  Although with the dust buster within an arm's reach, chances are I will get to it and clean it up in time.  I just love that little sucker!

My Swiffer-  There is nothing that can clean a floor better than getting on your hands and knees and using some good old elbow grease.  BUT, the swiffer wet mopping clothes can help keep the floor cleaner for a longer period of time in between those deep cleans (and who I am kidding, I generally just use the swiffer and am lucky if I do a thorough cleaning 2 times a year).  There are always good coupons for Swiffer products, too!  I must admit, I am pretty wasteful when it comes to these though.  I will use at least 6 wet mopping pads just to do that kitchen (which is only about 12x10 ft).  I can't stand when they get dirty.  That is why I steer clear of traditional mops.  I feel like they just spread the dirt around. 

My DVR-  I HEART my DVR!!! I can record my shows...gasp, how dare I try to watch anything that would be of interest to me?  But when the kids are all in bed and there is nothing else going on, I can sit down and catch up on whatever Bravo program that I missed (because about 75% of what I watch in on Bravo anyway).  Then when I get about 10 minutes into my show and someone walks to the stop of the steps to request water, I can pause it and continue when I get a chance.  Sometimes it may take me up to 3 days to watch one 60 minute show.  But at least I know it is there when I am ready to watch it. (Plus we have Direct TV, so no On Demand for me...)

Baby Wipes-  Yes, I have a baby.  And yes, I use these when I change her diaper.  But it does NOT stop there.  I use baby wipes for SO many things.  If something falls on the floor, I use them to wipe it up.  I use them to wipe down my woodwork when I see a spot or mark.  I use them to wipe sticky hands and faces.  I even use them to get the mascara off from under my eyes...on the rare occasions that I actually wear mascara (I am sure they do wonders for the skin under my eyes, but whatever works at this point).  Baby wipes have an endless amount of uses.

My Laptop computer-  We had a desktop computer until 2008.  When I had our second daughter, we decided to get a laptop...1. because our other computer completely died, and 2. because it would be much more convenient.  We had our desktop computer up in our finished attic and it was a pain to go up to use it, especially with a 3 year old and a new baby.  The laptop has been wonderful.  We can take it around the house and use it wherever we want.  It is sometimes my only connection to the outside world, so it is wonderful having it with me when I need it.  How else would I be able to have the time to check email, find out every little detail of people's lives on the wonderful world of facebook, or see what's happening in the world?

I must add that there are some items that deserve mention...these items are my Keurig (it is it and use it every morning, more than I probably should), my vacuum (I run those babies into the ground), and my crock pot (which I use quite often in the winter).  I am sure that there are numerous other items that are escaping my memory at this moment, but I will be sure to add them to the list. 

What are your favorite household items??? And is it sad that I get excited enough about household items to write a blog entry about them? Please share!!!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

More Children's TV show madness...

This is a continuation of my post from the other day, "WTF is up with some of these children's TV shows?".  If you have not read it, make sure you do before or after reading this.

There are oh, so many children's shows that boggle my mind.  I have already touched on many of them but I realized that I have only scratched the surface.  Here are some other little doozies that have me asking, ''What the hell is going on here?" on an almost daily basis. (I will continue where I left off with #10).

10.  Ni Hao Kai-lan
So this girl is supposed to be Chinese, right?  However, her eyes are shaped in perfect circles.  That is just not a realistic representation.  Please do not take this as a stereotype or being racially offensive.  I just want it to be more realistic or accurate.  That's all.  Also, her head is about 3 times the size of her body.  It is creepy.  And this is another show with only a grandparent present.  There is no other supervision while she plays with her friends which happen to got it, strange animals.  Her friends are almost as whiny as Caillou and every thing is a big issue with one being mad or upset in each episode.  Needless to say, I was less than thrilled when my daughter expressed her wishes to have a Kai-lan themed 3rd birthday party.  The only thing that gets me through is the variety of food, decorations, and activities we can have.

11.  Blue's Clues
Let's start with Steve.  He was the original "owner" of Blue who lived alone with his dog and other random objects that happened to be alive.  These friends included Salt and Pepper...who had a baby, Paprika(WTF?), shovel and pail, and mailbox, to name a few.  Steve was a grown man with very little interaction with the outside world.  Then Steve left for college (although he was easily in his mid 30s) and was replaced by his "cousin" Joe.  Please don't get me wrong...I am all for furthering your education but they made it seem like Steve was off to go live on a college campus somewhere.  And as for Joe, does that really happen? When one man goes to college, another man basically assumes his identity and lives his day to day life as if he was that person.  It's all odd.  I found it very interesting to learn that Steve is actually a musician and that he was once named one of People magazine's most eligible bachelors...

I will now take a little bit of time to discuss Nick Jr.'s fabulous late night programming.  If you have ever been channel surfing and come across Nick Jr. after 11pm, I am sure you were as intrigued as I was.

12.  The Upside Down Show
This show is based on the trials and tribulations of 2 Australian (I believe that they are from Australia) brothers who live in a strange (to say the least) house.  In every episode they must find some room or destination and they have all of these crazy wrong turns along the way until they find it...which happens after 3 wrong turns and some kid helping them out.  It is freakin' weird and I don't get it at all. period.  If you ever happen to catch a glimpse of this one, I am sure you will feel the same.

13.  Oobi
Oobi has to take the cake for the most bizarre children's show.  It is a bunch of hands that talk (with the thumb mimicking the bottom lip).  They all refer to themselves in the 3rd person, like "Oobi, friends, Uma".  This basically means that Oobi is friends with Uma.  I am not sure about other parents, but I think it is GREAT to teach your child to speak in simple sentences with very limited vocabulary and to refer to themselves in the 3rd person...again, WTF?  I discovered that this was the first show to air on Nick Jr.  How the channel survived after that is beyond me...
It now airs at midnight. It appears that poor Oobi got the shaft.

Finally, one of my daughter's faves...
14.  Bubble Guppies
This is actually a cute show with really catchy songs.  I just don't get the whole guppy thing.  They all live underwater but there are other non-marine animals on the show as well.  To make it legit, it seems like the creators simply put fish tails on all of the animals.  For example, there is an episode where a cow has a baby.  The cow, and its offspring, both have cow bodies with no front legs and fish tails.  It is pretty frightening...
Mr. Grouper is the teacher of the bubble guppies, but to me he seems a little too involved in all of their lives and he is basically the father figure of the show.  In one episode he lets them get a "bubble puppy".  If one of my children's teachers let them get a dog,  I am pretty sure that I would not appreciate it.

Please share with me if you have any other "favorite" children's shows! This list will always be a work in progress.

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Just want to put a little disclaimer on here...
Although you may not know it from my posts, my kids are actually pretty good and they get along the vast majority of the time.  Yes, my 6 year old is bossy and the almost 3 year old throws an occasional tantrum.  But in general, they are wonderful.  The 6 month old is fabulous...she is so laid back and happy. 
Even this morning when I asked them to go check on the baby while I made her a bottle, they did the cutest thing.  I was on my way up the stairs and I heard laughing...the 2 older ones had climbed in the crib with the baby and they ALL that is was the funniest thing.  The baby was cracking up and it was adorable!!!
But you will not hear much of that on this blog...because to be perfectly honest with you, I think people would much rather here all the gory details of day to day life with 3 kids.  It makes for a much funnier story too.  So that's it, I just wanted put it out there:)

Thanks to everyone who has been keeping up with the blog!!! I can't believe that I have had close to 2000 views so far. I really appreciate all of your feedback, too!

I hope everyone enjoys this BEAUTIFUL day!

It's Official! I have finally lost it...

I realized this morning as I was in the shower and my 3 year old kept pulling the shower curtain back and yelling, "Surprise!"...that I have finally lost it.

And by "it" I mean several things.

First, I have lost my privacy.  That was glaringly obvious this morning when I couldn't take a 10 minute shower in peace.  Even when I am trying to get dressed, it is like a game of 20 questions...what are you wearing? why are you wearing that? What shoes are you going to wear? Please wear high heels. I want to respond, "PLEASE give me one god forsaken second to myself."

In addition to my privacy, I have lost any time to myself between the hours of 7am until about 9pm (on a good night).  Let's face it, it is all about the kids.  I am lucky if I can shove half a sandwich down my throat at lunch time.  I do, however, manage to get about 4 cups of coffee in before mid morning.

I have also lost the luxury of being spontaneous.  It is a very rare occasion that we can plan something at the last minute.  Everything has to written on the calendar or it is forgotten.  Sometimes, I swear that I have short term memory loss.  And gone are the days that we can pack up and head out at a moment's notice.  It takes a good 30 minutes to get ready for even the simplest of trips.

As I have mentioned in a previous post, I have lost all control of my television.  I attempted to watch an episode an "Rocco's Dinner Party" last night...and even though the girls were playing barbies, they would come in the room and reprimand me for changing the channel.  Sometimes, I just have to lay down the law and tell them too bad.  I send them up to their room to play and I take about 30 minutes to watch something in complete silence...but who am I kidding, that lasts about 5 minutes then my silence in interrupted (usually by blood curdling screams due to an altercation involving a toy that no one ever plays with anyway but for some reason they both want it at the same exact moment).

So this morning in the shower, it became crystal clear to me that I had finally lost "it". But hopefully I will find it about 10 years or so.  Here's to hoping!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Please Don't Judge Me

When I am out in public, there are times when my kids are not on their best behavior.  I am sorry.  That is just how it is.  Do you think I want them to act like that?  I can assure you that I do not. 
Sometimes people look at me and I can read their mind by the look on their face.  If they are a new mom with a baby, I just love it...sometimes I see actual fear in their eyes.  It is at the moment that I want to say, "Yes, your precious, innocent little baby will do this one day".  But instead I just smile and go about my business. 

So when I am at the store and I have opened a bag of goldfish, a box of fruit snacks, and a package of graham crackers just to keep my kids quiet (while both the 6 year old and 3 year old are crammed into the back of the cart snacking like it is an all you can eat buffet), please don't judge me.

When I walk away from my screaming child at the park and act like I am leaving her there (because I know that she will eventually follow me), please don't judge me.

When I laugh at my daughter's off that charts tantrum because I actually want to cry at that moment, please don't judge me.

When my 6 year old is wearing an entirely too dressy, bedazzled, velvet Christmas dress in the middle of summer because that is one battle I did not want to fight that morning, please don't judge me.

When I give my almost 3 year old a binky because she has asked for it about 100 times (and YES, I know she is too old for it but I usually only give it to her at nap/bed time at home but I can't take ONE MORE SECOND), please don't judge me.

When I put the TV on in the morning and let them watch a few shows in a row because I have about a dozen loads of laundry to do, a dishwasher to empty, and kitchen to clean, please don't judge me. 

If you don't have children yet and you are planning to at some point in the future, then definitely please don't judge me because you may just be ME someday...and I promise you that if I see you out in public and you are doing any of the above, I will NOT judge you.  I will probably go buy you a bottle of wine.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Interesting potty training tools...

As I was searching online for potty training tips and books for my daughter, I came across this little gem...
Is this for real? Just what my daughter has always wanted...a stuffed droplet of urine or a plush piece of crap.  Do people really buy this?  Apparently the answer is yes and you can check out all of their merchandise at
They even sell stationary. Nothing like sitting down and writing a letter with your pee and poo paper, then adding the finishing touch with a nice sticker featuring your child's favorite pee or poo character.  And if traditional letter writing isn't your thing, you can also send an e-card.

One other little interesting find that I came across...

Oh yes, you are correct if you think that these are chocolates made to represent deer crap.  If your little one is successful on the potty, consider rewarding them with a delicious chocolate terd.  Now, that is just not right.  (They are made in Japan...and I will tell you, while doing my "research" I have noticed that Japan has an odd interest in feces.)

So maybe this is why my daughter has not expressed much interest in potty training.  Clearly, I haven't been using the proper potty training tools...

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Luvs at Target

This week (July 10-16) Luvs big pack diapers are on sale at Target for $16.  If you buy 2 boxes you get a $5 Target gift card!

Did you know???
You can use Pampers coupons for use the $1.50 off coupon that was in last week's paper to get 2 boxes for $30.50!
Also, if you go to the Luvs website  ( and sign up, you get another $1.00 off coupon.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

I do NOT appreciate that!

My kids are great.  They usually play very well together, want to help me when I need it, and don't talk back (especially the 5 1/2 month old...she is very respectful).  Trust me, there are millions of things that they do that I find cute, funny, endearing, etc. (Like my middle daughter saying "but you are my best friend" to her older sister when she wants things to go her way).
Sometimes, however, there are things they do that I really do NOT appreciate.  Here are 8 examples...

1.  Arguing first thing in the morning
Some days it seems like as soon as they open their eyes, they have some sort of issue with each other.  It is either getting downstairs first and who "won", who looked at who with a mean face, or who gets to pick the TV show that they watch.  Please ladies, let me at least have my coffee first!

2.  Raiding my closet
My oldest daughter has started to raid my closet lately...not for my clothes, but for shoes.  This does not bother me.  What does bother me is that she leaves my shoes all over the house.  She will come downstairs wearing knee high black boots...about 15 minutes later I usually trip over them as I carry a laundry basket through the living room.  Once I definitely think I got a slight ankle sprain from tripping over a pair of hot pink high heels at the bottom of the stairs.  This leads me to #3...

3.  Not cleaning up after themselves
Now I know that they are young, but I am really trying to get them to clean up after themselves when they are done playing.  My 6 year old is getting better at it.  She puts her plate or cup in the sink when she is done...and if she is playing with something that she doesn't want her little sister to get, she sure as hell puts that away.  But for some reason they leave all their crap EXACTLY where they were playing with it and move on to the next conquest.  I must sound like a broken record...I threaten at least once a day to put all of their toys in a bag and give them to other children that will appreciate them (and I actually have done it 2 times when I had a strategically placed Purple Heart Society pick-up scheduled the next day).

Exhibit A: Toys left on floor while the girls decide to take out all the coloring books and crayons in the other room

4.  Treating me like a short order cook
For some reason, my daughters think that the world is their oyster when it comes to meals.   Even if they both decide on the same thing, say pancakes for example, one wants plain while the other wants me to make banana.  I don't always oblige so I am not sure why they continue to request specific meals when I usually ignore those requests. 

5.  Coloring on the walls
My oldest daughter does not do this anymore, but the almost 3 year old has been known to take a crayon or pencil to my wall more than a few times.  The one place that she likes to do this is on our sunporch where we have a brick wall.  She has colored on more than half of it with chalk.  At first, I would take the chalk away and put her in time out...but I have kind of given up on that battle.  I have no clue how we will clean this up in the future...

Exhibit B:  As you can clearly see, the coloring on the brick wall has gotten a little out of hand.  You might be wondering how she reaches the higher spots on the wall...she has a stool that I have found her on quite often.

6.  Drinking from my glass
Nothing gets me more annoyed when we are eating dinner than one of the girls drinking out of my glass.  I don't mind if I offer them a sip...but when they take it without asking and get their nasty backwash all in it, that really ticks me off.  I end up just giving them my glass and getting a new one.  Who thinks that it is okay to just take someone's drink and help yourself to a sip?  Obviously, I still have some lessons on manners to teach around here.

7.  Expecting constant entertainment
Like I mentioned earlier, most of the time my 2 oldest girls play together pretty well.  They get along about 75% of the time and it is wonderful.  BUT, they are some days when they want or expect constant entertainment.  The oldest one will wake up and say, "What are we doing today?", "Can we go to someone's house?", "Can we go shopping or out to eat?".  They look at me like I am an event planner and my daily job is to fill their social calendars.

8.  Tattling
I can't stand tattling.  If it is something major that I need to know about, that is fine.  However, tattling on every little tiny infraction is super annoying.  Sometimes I want to say, "Don't you know snitches get stitches?".  But I just can't bring myself to say it...yet.

Are there things that your children do that get under your skin?  Please share... I would LOVE to hear about it:)

Friday, July 8, 2011

More Sunscreen Info

Re: my last post...Just so you don't think I am a spaz (which I am, but that is besides the point) is some info about the active ingredients in many sunscreens.

Active ingredients in sunscreen and associated concerns:
Octisalate- Allergies/immunotoxicity, Irritation (skin, eyes, or lungs), Enhanced skin absorption
Octocrylene- Persistence and bioaccumulation, Biochemical or cellular level changes
Octinoxate- Endocrine disruption, Allergies/immunotoxicity, Persistence and bioaccumulation, Enhanced skin absorption, Biochemical or cellular level changes

Oxybenzone (the most hazardous ingredient)- Developmental/reproductive toxicity, Endocrine disruption, Allergies/immunotoxicity, Persistence and bioaccumulation, Enhanced skin absorption, Biochemical or cellular level changes

Now I don't know about anyone else, but there is no way that I can have this information and still continue to use products with these ingredients. I can actually feel the anxiety building in me as I read it. (although, I am sure I need to be medicated...)

*check out the Environmental Working Group’s website for useful information…it will stress you out, but at least you will be informed-

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Maybe Sometimes Ignorance Really is Bliss

      The more educated that I become on a topic, the more stressed out I usually become about it. If I read about the harsh treatment of chickens, we generally have to spend double the money on cage free eggs at the grocery store.  Sometimes my worry fades...and sometimes, not so much.  To date, I have stopped buying almost all canned goods, baby food in plastic containers, scented children's products (not to mention that I spend about 10 minutes reading the label of every children's lotion/shampoo that I buy)...just to name a few. And don't even get me started with the organic food craze. If I don't buy organic fruits/veggies, I clean them all in a wash that I got from Trader Joe's. If I don't, all I can think of is my child ingesting pesticides...because of what I read. And I can't get I read more and more. I am convinced that I will have an ulcer in the very near future. This anxiety leads me to believe that maybe sometimes ignorance really is bliss!
      Summer time always adds extra stress because of sunscreen. My almost 3 year old has very sensitive skin and I have to be careful of what sunscreen I use on her. I found one that worked...but after reading that it had Oxybenzone in it (that has been found to be hazardous and is easily absorbed into the skin), I immediately stopped using it. A new one that I ordered will be arriving tomorrow. I am HOPING that it works.
      But honestly, this crap keeps me up at night! Wouldn't it be great if everything was all natural and free from chemicals? It just seems like every time I turn around I find out that something else is no good. Once I read about it, I can't bring myself to use it again for fear that I will be knowingly harming my children in one way or another.
      So I want to share this burden with you all (and I am sure you will thank me for the added stress). Here is a link to a list of the best sunscreens for summer.

      And do yourself a NOT search what you are using now if it is not all natural or organic because you will see that there are probably more harmful ingredients than you would care to know about.
(Thanks to my friend Katie G. for posting this link on facebook!!!)

      So at least my kids will be safe...while I am laid up in the hospital with multiple stomach ulcers due to worrying about every danger in the world.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

WTF is up with some of these children's TV shows?

Every night as my daughter watches Dora the Explorer, dozens of questions race through my head. The same thing happens with countless other television programs that I have had the extreme pleasure of watching over the years. Here I will discuss some of them and the many questions that I have...

1. Dora the Explorer- Why is this young girl able to go on these adventures completely unsupervised? Oh, that's right, she has her pet monkey, Boots, along for the ride. Really? Her parents think that this is safe? And why do all her adventures only involve 3 landmarks? All she has to do is repeat, with the help of her trusty map, the 3 landmarks over and over and over...and she gets to her destination. I just don't get it.

2. Go, Diego, Go- We can not forget Diego either. So apparently he is a wildlife rescuer with a pet baby jaguar. How is that acceptable? He interacts with animals in almost every episode that would probably fatally injure him in reality. Are children supposed to think that it is okay to approach a puma, monkey, alligator, etc. if they encounter them in the wild?

3. Max and Ruby- So we have all heard the "Where are Max and Ruby's parents?" question before. I have accepted that I may never know that answer. That is fine. I would like to know a little more about them though. For instance, is the grandmother the primary caregiver? If so, why does she live down the street? How old is Ruby supposed to be? If she is old enough to babysit for her brother while unsupervised, I think she needs to get a grip and stop playing with all of her damn dolls then. And why is it that Max only says one word each episode? That is just annoying. Ruby needs to stop babying him and being an enabler.

4. Handy Manny- Both my husband and I have a major problem with this show. Why is it that Manny gets all the credit for doing little to no work? Let's be honest, the tools do it all. Speaking of the some episodes they eat. How does that happen? Please someone, explain it to me.

5. Calliou- My questions regarding Calliou are plentiful. First, I understand being original, but what is that name? Also, why is he bald? There is not even one strand of hair on his head. If he was supposed to have some medical condition then that is fine, but the creator should make viewers aware of that so we can at least have a heads up. That way we could explain it to our children if necessary. Finally, can that kid be any more annoying and whiny? I do not allow my children to watch this for that very reason. Each episode consists of his constant complaining.

6. Thomas and Friends- I get the whole train thing and the fact that the trains are "alive". What I do not get is why they have to make the creepiest facial expressions. It is plain scary...and sometimes those trains are awfully mean to each other.

7. Wonder Pets- Man, these "classroom" pets are something else! My first question is how does Tuck get from the water in his little turtle aquarium thing to the water in the sink? I just don't get how that happens. Then, how do they make an actual working boat that flies across the sky with toy parts, scraps, and 2 highlighter caps? Finally, do they ever want something different than celery? It is the same snack every episode. I would think that might get old...but maybe not to a turtle, guinea pig, and duck.

8. Make Way for Noddy- This lovely little gem on Sprout is chock full of goodness. First of all, Noddy is far from the sharpest tool in the shed...I don't know how he lives alone and survives. And what is up with his friends? There is the bear with only a shirt on, a creepy talking doll, and those 2 troublemakers that might cause nightmares in children under the age of 3, just to name a few. My first daughter watched this show...needless to say we will not repeat that mistake with the other two.

9. The Fresh Beat Band- How old are these "kids" supposed to be? Is their "music school" part of highschool or college? And if it is highschool, why do they all live together? Also, they must get on each other's nerves at some point. Why do they always have to be so freakin' happy? I found one person's take on it and thought it was funny. I will share it with you:
"...the generic misadventures and bland pop stylings of Kiki, Marina, Twist, and Shout are what all entertainment will resemble if Mitt Romney is elected president." (no offense if you are a Romney supporter)

Please feel free to share some of your questions regarding these or other television programs. I would love to know that I am not alone every night when watching these shows in complete bewilderment.

Karma is a big B*%^#

“Karma moves in two directions. If we act virtuously, the seed we plant will result in happiness. If we act non-virtuously, suffering results. ”
-Sakyong Mipham

I really want to keep this blog light-hearted and humorous, but I must touch on what happened today with the verdict of the Casey Anthony trial. Being a mother, I can't imagine how one would harm their child, although it happens everyday. Shocked is only one word I would use to describe how I felt when I heard that verdict. Disgusted, sickened, and sad for that little girl...the list could go on and on.
When I think of children who are harmed by anyone and their offender does not face legal consequences, one thing that makes be feel better is thinking of that big b&^$* that they call Karma. I hope it comes back to all of them and kicks their asses. That is my hope today for the mother who sat and smiled upon hearing her fate. Yes, she was found not guilty but she must live her life knowing that her child is gone. Only she truly knows what role she played in is her cross to bear.

I found this picture and it made me smile...hope you all enjoy it as well.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Funny Mom Quotes

Happy 4th of July Everyone!!!
Here are some funny, laugh out loud quotes about the joys of motherhood:

"I refuse to think of them as chin hairs. I think of them as stray eyebrows."
-Janette Barber

"Laugh and the world laughs with you. Cry and you cry with your girlfriends. "
-Laurie Kuslansky

"A male gynecologist is like an auto mechanic who never owned a car."
-Carrie Snow

"Inside every older person is a younger person - wondering what the hell happened."
-Cora Harvey Armstrong

"I'm not going to vacuum 'til Sears makes one you can ride on."
-Roseanne Barr

"My second favorite household chore is ironing. My first being hitting my head on the top bunk bed until I faint."
-Erma Bombeck

"If you can't be a good example, then you'll just have to be a horrible warning."
-Catherine Aird

"My mother never saw the irony in calling me a son-of-a-bitch."
-Jack Nicholson

"The worst feature of a new baby is its mother's singing."
-Kin Hubbard

“Any mother could perform the jobs of several air traffic controllers with ease.”
-Lisa Alther

“I want my children to have all the things I couldn’t afford. Then I want to move in with them.”
-Phyllis Diller

“Raising a kid is part joy and part guerilla warfare.”
-Ed Asner

“A Harvard Medical School study has determined that rectal thermometers are still the best way to tell a baby’s temperature. Plus, it really teaches the baby who’s boss.”
-Tina Fey

“You know you're a mother when your child throws up and you run to catch it before it hits the rug.”

“Most children threaten at times to run away from home. This is the only thing that keeps some parents going."
-Phyllis Diller

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Whose TV is it anyway?

As my daughter was getting ready to watch the movie Lemonade Mouth on the Disney channel tonight, I promptly sent her upstairs so I could reclaim my television. First of all, I wanted her to get to bed because it had been a long day. More importantly, I really wanted to watch whatever mindless show was on Bravo or the Style channel (turned out it was Jerseylicious that tickled my fancy tonight).
In my house, the kids generally get to watch their shows in the evening before bed. My older daughter usually wants to watch Disney channel, while the almost 3 year old almost always gets her way and they end up watching Nick Jr.
After only one 30 minute program, my eyes are typically glazed over as I uncontrollably replay the songs from that show in my head over and over(The Fresh Beat Band is the worst with their annoyingly catchy tunes).
Really, how do these little people get control of everything? Most of the time they are not even watching the TV...but if I even try to sneak a show like Say Yes to the Dress on TLC for example, one of them will notice and basically berate me for it.
So I have to ask, whose TV is it anyway? I think it is time for me to take the power back.

Buy 2 get 1 free at Old Navy

It may appear that I am always advertising for Old Navy...just so happens that they have the deals that I have noticed this week:)

TODAY and TOMORROW (7/3 and 7/4), buy 2 get 1 free (of equal or lesser value) anything in the store!!!

Saturday, July 2, 2011

The Babysitter

Just recently, I have realized that it is time to get a babysitter other than a family member.  Until a few weeks ago, only my mom, my mother-in-law, and occasionally my sisters-in-law had babysat my children. But I really feel bad imposing on them and I knew that I would NOT feel bad imposing on a babysitter that I was going to pay a pretty penny to watch my kids for a few hours.  So far, I found one girl that was very nice, responsible, and good with my kids (more importantly, she is willing to come back and babysit again)!

What I am getting to is that this whole process got me thinking of how hard it is to find someone you trust to come into your home and stay with your children.  My oldest daughter is 6 years old and she is an open soon as any babysitter left, she would most likely tell me every little thing that occurred while we were gone.  When I was about the same age, I had a babysitter that watched me on a regular basis.  I really don't recall  any babysitters before this point in my life.  When I think back to this babysitter, let's just call her "Sue" for the sake of the story, I wish I could say that I have fond memories.  All I can say is a have many memories, but "fond" would not be the best word to describe them.

For starters, "Sue" was only 5 years older than me. I was 6, she was 11. That is unacceptable.  What was my mom thinking? Is that even legal?   "Sue" would come to my house 3 days a week during the summer while my mom worked.  Shortly after the summer began, I called my mom at work and told her I would slit my own throat if she ever had "Sue" babysit again.  The next day, "Sue" returned. She would lay on the diving board of our pool to catch some rays and ignore all requests by me to play barbies.  She clearly did NOT want to play with me but she also would not allow me to go play with any of my friends. It was maddening.

Each afternoon, "Sue" would make me watch Days of Our Lives and General Hospital.  I will not lie about this one...after awhile I learned to love these shows and became very invested in the characters (but I was 6 years old). Again, unacceptable. 

Although my mom insists that "Sue" did not babysit that often, that is not how I remember it. It definitely lasted at least 2 summers and throughout the school year as needed. The following summer I think we watched Texas Chainsaw Massacre and St. Elmo's Fire over 50 times.  She was 12, I was 7. NOT acceptable.

In "Sue's" defense, she was very young and I guess she did her best. And I am sure I was a real jackass.  She did grow on me over time too.  I even made up a little song that I would sing every morning as I waited for her (yes, I began to wait for her to arrive and I bet that my enthusiasm at 7 am was very charming).  I would also like to add that I became possessive of her. When "Sue" began to babysit for another neighborhood family, I was pretty ticked off. But that family's house soon became my second home so if "Sue" was babysitting, I was usually there anyway.

In general, all of the situations I mentioned are things that would make me NEVER have that babysitter return to my home. But perhaps it was different in the early to mid 80s. Who knows.

As I reflect on my experiences with "Sue" as my babysitter, I realize that as long as I survived that is all that matters. I am sure that my kids will be fine with a babysitter every now and then. And hey, maybe I can even have "Sue" come watch the girls sometime...since she is the godmother of my oldest daughter and one of my best friends* (so I guess she wasn't THAT bad).

*NOTE:  Although Sue is one of my best friends, I introduced her as "my old babysitter" until I was at least in my mid 20s.

From left: me, Sue ("my old babysitter"), my mom (who thought Sue was an acceptable option to leave her only child with), and Nicole (who was also babysat by Sue for years)

Good places to take your kids to eat this summer!

Let's face it, sometimes you just feel like going out to dinner...even if you have to take the kids and you know it might not be exactly enjoyable.  If you get the urge to pack the kids up and head out for dinner, here are some places that I suggest (along with great "kids eat free" deals*):

-Any counter service establishment
You can order and get your meal in a timely fashion, leaving less time for the kids to get restless.
Some suggestions are Panera bread, Pure Bread, Moe's Southwest Grill, Jake's Burgers*

-Mexican Restaurants
The staff is usually friendly, food is served quickly after being ordered, and the noise level is high enough on most occasions that noone will notice a tantrum or meltdown at your you can have a margarita or 2 to lighten the mood:)
I suggest El Tapatio, La Toteca, or La TonaltecaBorders Cafe is also a great place because of their good food and extremely loud dining room.

-Ice Cream centered restaurants
Friendlies or Charcoal Pit are usually good options, solely because you can bribe your child with ice cream.  Not that I recommend bribery, but sometimes anything goes.
Friendlies also has coupons in the Sunday paper about once every other month.

Here are some "Kids Eat Free" deals (always double check to make sure these deals are still available):

Jake's Hamburgers- Kids eat free on Saturday and Sunday. 1 free kids meal with purchase of adult meal.

Kid Shelleen's- Kids 10 and under eat free on Mondays

Klondike Kate's- Kids eat free ALL DAY, EVERYDAY all summer long (thanks for the heads up from my sister in law, Kristin)

Chick-Fil-A - Tuesdays from 5:30 to 7:30, free kids meal with purchase of adult meal

Arner's (in NewCastle)- Thursdays, 1 child entree with purchase of adult entree

Lone Star Steakhouse- Tuesdays, 2 child entrees with purchase of 1 adult entree

So those are some of my suggestions...but to be completely honest with you, if the kids are involved, 90% of the time I am going with TAKE OUT.

I will be adding to this list when I come across new deals. PLEASE feel free to comment if you have any suggestions or if you know of any other places where kids eat free!