Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Mommy Drinks Wine

This is a time when I am so glad my kids can't write much more than their names. One of my good friends just sent this picture of her daughter's school work. The girl knows her Mommy! Share this if your child would write something similar about you. 

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

My Son is My Hero

My oldest son is only 4, but today he gave me a peek into the kind of man he will be. I went to get him up from his nap, and we were sitting on the floor of his room. We heard a noise downstairs. I figured it was the dog, and wasn’t worried about it. But, my son stands up and says, “You stay here. I’ll go see what it was.” Four. Years. Old. My hero. This one is for you, Monkey.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Parenting = Improvising

Much of parenting is improvising. Like today, when my little guy developed severe diaper rash from the amoxicillin. In case you haven’t experienced this, amoxicillin can lead to odor-free diarrhea that tends to sit in the diaper longer, because … well, you don’t smell it. This, as you can imagine, leads to a nasty case of diaper rash. My poor little baby has such a bad case of it that he refused to sit in his high-chair for lunch. So, we improvised by letting him stand and filling his bib with food.

Improvising happens on a daily basis around here, as I’m sure it does at your house, too. For example, you can’t run to the grocery store for the ingredient you forgot, so you improvise. My mom is the most amazing improviser in the kitchen. She may only have zucchini, lime juice, and baking soda and somehow she makes cinnamon rolls.

I would love to hear how you have improvised in your house. I’ll put together a list of the top improvises for a future blog.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

How to be Cool in a Minivan

I know, I know, you and I and 50 billion other people have said it … “I swore I would never drive a minivan.” Well, crap. Here we are, lined up in the school parking lot, alarms going off, automatic doors opening … anything we can do to locate our silver Honda in a line of 13 others just like it.

Secretly, it was the single best decision we’ve made since the birth of our children. I see moms still lifting their 5-year-olds into an SUV, then crawling in with them to buckle them. I loved my little crossover when I had two small babies, but the ease of the minivan for both the kids and me is not something I will soon give up. With three kids, a stroller, pack ‘n’ play, potty chair, cooler, car activities, and luggage for five, there is no way we’d be able to take a trip longer than 45 minutes.

So, for those of us who think we couldn’t live without our minivans, here are my rules for attempting to be cool.

  1. No stick figure families.
  2. No personalized license plates with “XYZPLS3” or “USX3.” First of all, I’ve seen the latter, and I’m pretty sure they don’t mean two people times three, because I only see 5 stick figures, so … unless my math is off.
  3. When you open the side door, Goldfish crackers should not fall to the pavement in a slow and agonizing death. (Oops. Guilty.)
  4. Do not use the DVD player on your 10-minute ride to preschool.
  5. Tint the windows as much as you can so people can’t see the hell that is breaking loose inside the vehicle.
  6. No stickers on the car, including “My kid is an honor roll student,” the acronym stickers with black letters on the white oval to indicate your favorite beach or school, or the sport stickers—including, but not limited to the ones that look like a ball has broken your window and you chose to leave it there.
  7. The volume should not be above 11 when listening to XM 078 (kid tunes).
  8. The volume should be the same when you are alone and listening to your favorite music. If you listen to it louder, don’t open your windows. You don’t want to look like you are trying too hard.
  9. Do NOT, under any circumstance, talk or text on your handheld device while driving. The only thing more irritating than someone texting or talking on their phone while driving is a mom in a minivan texting or talking on her phone while driving.
  10. Do anything you can to have date night with your husband, or a girls’ night with friends, and NOT drive the minivan. Even following the above nine rules, your cool factor goes right out the window when you step out of the minivan with cleavage and high heels. Your self-esteem will be tarnished when you have glances from hipsters and DINKs that scream, “Aw, that’s so sad. That poor couple. They’ll be home by 10, but at least they are trying.” And, then you are like, “Whatever … don’t feel sorry for me … I, I, I … got nothin’ … damn minivan.”

That being said, it doesn’t matter what you drive. You have kids and when you are 80 and driving your convertible solar-powered sports car, you will look back and know that being a parent was the coolest freakin’ thing you ever did. See you on the road!

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Saturday, March 9, 2013


My grandfather, known as Cowboy Grandpa to my children, turns 101 today. God bless him. No really, God must have blessed him. This stubborn cowboy still has his wits about him and still walks around a limited care facility and plays cards with a group of women, who are probably an average of 20 years younger than he. Cradle robber!

My twins did some artwork for him for his birthday. I wrote captions on the back so he would know what he is looking at. They are 4. On my daughter’s picture, I wrote, “Cowboy Grandpa on a horse in the desert.” She corrected me and said, “No, it’s just a cowboy, not Cowboy Grandpa. Cowboy Grandpa is too old to be on the horse.”
100 years between Cowboy Grandpa
and his youngest Great Grandchild.

So, I said, maybe it was Cowboy Grandpa when he was younger. She said, “Yea, like maybe when he was 100.”

Yes, this man probably could have ridden a horse at 100. Happy Birthday, Cowboy Grandpa!

Friday, March 8, 2013

The Crap I AM Telling You About!

Am I the only one who is really sensitive to other kids’ poop smell? I have an amazing sense of smell, which does not treat me well. I don’t hear very well, so as they say, I think my other senses are heightened. I could be upstairs and yell down to my husband to check the baby’s diaper. I’m not kidding. I can smell crap from great distances. So, maybe this is my own problem, but I want to see what others think.

I’m in a public place today, and I take the baby to an area to play. As soon as I walk in, I smell poo, and there’s only one child in there. The mom was in another room. She came in to check on him and asked if he was playing nicely. I said yes, but I think he may have a dirty diaper. So, she goes over and sure enough. Her words, “Whew! Yep!” However, instead of taking him and changing him, she leaves the room and goes back to talking to another mom.

Uh, is someone going to address the giant poopy diaper in the room? Nope, guess not. So, before I start gagging, I take the baby elsewhere. Ten minutes later, this poor kid is still wandering around in his own feces. The whole place now smells. I can’t get away from it no matter where I go. I see the woman has a diaper bag with diapers clearly in the side pocket. So, I can’t figure out why she would allow this to go on.

To me, this is sort of a common decency issue. She knows I smelled it, because I told her about it. Does she think I don’t mind the smell of child poo? Please tell me if I am being overly sensitive here. This is the third time in two weeks this type of scenario has played out. Do I need to be more understanding or forgiving? Are most people indifferent to the smell of kid crap?

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Single Parent Evenings Suck

I’m giving the baby a bath upstairs, when the dog starts barking to be let in. It’s dark, cold, and there’s snow on the ground. Who could blame her? Then, the timer on the stove goes off to indicate that time is up for my 4-year-old son to finish his dinner. This also means that it’s chicken and bean soup for breakfast and no extra piece of cornbread. Then, the phone starts ringing. My daughter is yelling upstairs, “Mommy, someone’s trying to call you … Mommy, the timer is going off.” Seconds later, she’s right behind me telling me the same thing. I try to explain to her how to shut off the timer—all the while attempting to block out the beeping and barking. By the way, if I had cookies in the oven and the timer went off while I was upstairs, there is no way I would hear it. While I’m explaining this, baby hits his head on the water faucet, screams, and looks at me like it’s all my fault.

10 minutes. That’s all it was. 10 minutes.

I am very lucky that my husband has very few overnight trips or late evenings. I’m not sure how single parents or parents, whose spouse travels frequently, manage day in and day out. If you are one of these parents, what do you do to get through the evenings without polishing off an entire bottle of wine and losing your voice from screaming at your kids?

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

My Boys are Biters

This is roughly three and a half years ago, when my twins were one. I was scanning old pictures the other day, as I like to see the resemblances between my baby and his older siblings. Well, today, I found a striking resemblance ... my boys are biters!

In my defense of this photo, I can only imagine I was photographing a precious moment when out of the blue, Jaws goes in for the kill. He never liked anyone else getting attention from me, so that is what may have led to this unfortunate incident. I will neither confirm nor deny that he was bit back immediately after the camera hit the floor.