7 socially awkward moments I embrace

 This is the latest entry from Julia who runs the blog Lipstick & Lollipops. Make sure to check her out.

OFF THE TABLE!

I used to try to overcompensate for being socially awkward.

I’m now the wise age of 35 and generally try to embrace it. It’s less exhausting.

1. I hug people. Most people graciously hug me back, but not always. My first spin class in a few years kicked my ass. The trainer (also a mother of two) seemed really happy to see me, but she’s also the bubbly type. I fell off my STATIONARY bike trying to give her a hug. She gestured that she’d pass on my hug.

2. I wear red lipstick all over my face. I’ve worn red lipstick since I was about 11 years old. My teacher made me take it off every day in junior high. I still put it right back on my face without a mirror. I often miss my lips. Shouldn’t it be just like if you have food in your teeth? It’s not…

3. I own my white girl dance moves. Decades ago, my Mom and her girlfriends watched my dramatic dance interpretations to Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” on my purple boom box. I started to bust it out without liquid courage in my late twenties. Last week I definitely was the only hip hop dancer in my strategic planning work group’s dance break. It broke the ice, right?

4. I sometimes wear baby puke. My almost one-year-old has acid reflux. I brought him into a preschool open house after he puked all over me. The only alternative was not to go. The gracious parent hosts tried to hang up my floor length coat. I insisted that I wear it – zipped up.

5. I change my baby’s boys’ diapers in public, which equals an audience when they pee on me. Public bathrooms and changing tables are disgusting so I try to avoid them with my little ones. My boys may be the modest type as they’ve fought back many times with projectile pee all over me…

6. I was in a zone trying to contain my baby during my nephew’s First Communion. When others around me started to process toward the altar, I brought him with me. My reserved brother-in-law gestured I return to my seat since it  was parents-only of the First Communion kids. Oops!

7. I’ve always been clumsy. Everyone said I would grow into my height, but it never happened… The other day I practically ice skated to work on all the ice in Chicago. I started to get a big head about how coordinated I’ve become since I started occasionally looking down when I walk. Just then, I too excitedly yelled “HI” to some co-workers I barely know. I wiped out on the ice. While I normally look around me to make sure no one saw my wipe out, I didn’t have to this time. My acquaintances kindly rushed toward me since I obviously took a big fall.

Do you do embarrassingly things in public?  Please share!

The original entry can be found on Julia’s blog here

What Do Moms Do In Bathrooms?

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 Today’s guest entry comes from Nadege who is on her way to become a regular guest-blogger on WeMothers. The title speaks for itself, doesn’t it? 

I know a lot of men out there are wondering why women are spending so much time in the bathroom? What are they doing? Well, let me tell you, a lot of things are happening in there…

Prior to being a mom, we go to the restroom to apply our make –up; and retouch it three or four times during the day. I know it is difficult to believe. How did we go from wearing make-up to not even bothering to get dressed anymore? Just take my word for it, in our previous life, our handbag was tiny and had just enough room for some blush and twenty eight different colors of lipsticks. Today, the make-up has disappeared and been replaced with baby wipes, crumbled crackers, half sucked-on lollipops without the wrapping, pens with no cap on, pain killers (for mom’s headache), allergy medicine, juice boxes, and candies – new ones, old ones, whole or half-chewed… And forget the cute little handbag; our bag is just practical – that’s polite for ugly.

Once we become mothers, the bathroom takes a whole new place in our life. It becomes our refuge, our sanctuary, a haven of peace. It’s the only place we can run to and not be judged for what we do in it, which is:

1. We yell hysterically at the walls. When the craziness of unruly kids becomes too much and we have used every possible option (and failed) to regain control; when no amount of reasoning, punishing or voice-raising will get anyone’s attention, there is only one thing left to do: lock ourselves in the toilet to scream and swear at the walls instead. Somehow, walls look like they have a better ability to listen than the rascals we live with.

2. Sometimes, we take it a step further and we cry. A plain, good old cry, sitting fully dressed on the toilet. Bathrooms are a great place to cry. Because for one, there is an (almost) endless supply of toilet paper to blow our nose and wipe our tears. Secondly, we manage to get a little privacy to do that. I am not sure how that happens, because for anything else, (i.e. regular toilet business), we always have an audience. But our tears don’t draw as big a crowd…

3. We text, google and blog. Of all the places where we could do that, the toilet is the best. We can sneak on the computer without our kids noticing. After all, we tell them off for using electronics all the time so it’s hard to keep a straight face if they see us do just that. I tried to justify myself, “It’s not the same, mom is working”. But that backfired, in the form of, “Oh yeah? On twitter? What kind of job do you have: virtual clown?” (I tell you, past the age of 5, kids are too smart for their own good!!) So now I hide in the bathroom and lie about what I do in there. But that’s cool, I can totally live with that…

4. We do stuff we don’t want our kids to see, like ordering Christmas presents. For real, I order presents from the comfort of my toilet seat. Home shopping taken to a whole new level! I often wondered why my tiny toilet had electricity outlets in it. Now I know: to charge my computer!

5. We hide. When we hear our kids looking for us, and we know they are on a mission to wind us up, we just crawl in there, with the lights off and sit in the dark. Nobody will come and check if we are in there, because who would be silly enough to sit on a toilet, in the dark?

I, for one love hiding in my bathroom. It feels so safe. And it’s definitely the best place to be when the house gets crazy. Here is a picture of my little piece of tranquility…

Make sure to also visit her blog here and send her some love on her Facebook page here.

Put the fun in simple holiday entertaining

Right in time for Christmas comes the contribution from our latest guest Blogger, Julia Passamani. Make sure to also check her blog “Lipstick & Lollipops” and her Facebook Fan Page here and give her some love. If you too would like to see your writing posted on our blog and promoted through our social channels, send us an email @ admin at wemothers dot com.

Chaos

Some make it look easy, but holiday entertaining is intimidating.  My spontaneous dinner party yesterday inherently lacked a plan. I decided the menu that morning.

I would go to my usual weight lifting class and see an afternoon movie for the first time in six months. You see why my parents always called me their “Hurricane.” I’m slowly learning to prioritize and cram less into one day.

Keep it simple, right? That means I skipped the gym and movie. My sister met the kids and me at the grocery store to help restrain them while I checked-off my list.

I ran up to the second floor for alcohol and paid for it. We finally checked out with the groceries. I announced in the packed elevator that the wine I bought was still downstairs. Sigh of relief that it was still there…

An hour before show time yesterday, my table was still not set for our simple dinner party. The boys continued to remove ornaments from our tree despite being placed seemingly out of their reach. They un-wrapped gifts for other people…

The pot roast would be done at 6:30pm. HB built the fire and restored order. He cranked up the Christmas music and all was good. Down to the last minute, I rocked my purple track suit and ND maternity t-shirt all night. We soon toasted and laughed with family.

Sure, I’ll try to allow more lead time for future planning. Other than my own avoidable stress, none of that mattered. Our fun evening ended on a high note.

My Dad reminded us that his claim to fame is karaoke for Pink Cadillac at our friend’s recent party.  My sister agrees the crowd went wild after their song. We found karaoke on our tv through On Demand. We belted out some classics that my truly musical husband carried. Our boys’ favorite was Jingle Bells.

What are your holiday lessons for fun entertaining? Although most of us can’t carry a tune, my Mom passes out Christmas sheet music for loved ones to end the evening on Christmas Eve in song. Their atmosphere is warm and casual to welcome a neighbor dressed as Santa for the little ones.

http://www.chicagonow.com/lipstick-lollipops

He’s so gay!

Our latest blog entry comes from guest blogger Tracey. Make sure to also check out her blog at http://bellaskys.blogspot.com/ . And if you too want to be a guest blogger and see your writing published on our blog, send us an email at admin at wemothers dot com.
Conversation between me & the girls the other night…
twin: He is sooooo gay!
me: gay? do you know what that means?
twin: yeah, it means if a boy acts like a girl
me: hmm no, not really? where did you hear that?
twin: this boy at school, everyone says that he acts like a girl, he talks like a girl & he thinks he is a girl, so they call him gay.
me in my head:       ::well hold on to him ladies cause he will some day be your bestie!!!!::
me: well, hmm how bout I tell you both the truth about the meaning of gay, cause your friends dont really have it right..
me:      ::deep breath, hoping i get it right::
me: sometimes, a person is born they have feelings like they like being with someone, they identify or like to hang around someone who is the same as them. A boy can like a boy & a girl could like a girl. they can fall in love & be together for a really long time, they may date for a short time, they could even get married.
twin: but they cant make a baby
me: no, but they can adopt a baby and can be a family
me: but they are gay and its part of them just like the color of your hair or the freckles on your nose (S) or the two different color eyes you have (C) Its very much who they are and not something to be made fun of, if you make fun of someone because of being gay, you are a bully. it would be the same as someone making fun of you because of the way you look. Its just part of who they are.
twins:       ::silence::
me in my head:       ::holy crap, i hope i got that somewhat right……but i think i did?!?!?::
twins:        ::more silence::
me: so what specials did you have in school today?
So this conversation has been one I have been waiting for.  My girls are official tweens, they will be 11 in a few weeks. We have had the discussions about body parts, changing, growing up & yes….”the birds & the bees”. This was the next phase of the dialogue, Dialog really never ends in my chatty house.  With two girls + me, its inevitable.  But I kinda like it that way.  Open dialog & honesty seems to always have worked for us.  My mom was always open & honest with me, I chose to parent that way also.
My goal for my children is to teach them kindness, love, acceptance of all people.  Regardless of….well… anything.  It makes me sad that so many people are so divided on this topic.  I felt good about telling them the way I told them.
If I have lost friends because of this post, then that’s sad.  If I have helped another parent with telling their child the same thing then great!  I never really know what direction I want this blog to go in.  I just felt really compelled to share this here.  Leave a comment if you’d like.
http://bellaskys.blogspot.com/

The Mom Guilt Plague

Here is another guest entry from Cari from Tot-Wrangler about this constant feeling of guilt moms tend to have. Make sure to check the link to her blog at the bottom of this entry. 

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It’s no secret there is one thing that plagues every mother on the planet, Mom Guilt. All day, every day, there is ultimately something we can (and will) beat ourselves up about.

Today alone, I managed to make myself feel like shit about the following:

*I forgot my Middle Dude’s backpack and I forced him to be THAT kid carrying out his preschool masterpieces, in a brown plastic grocery bag.  I sure do hope me lugging around all these other kids gives me a free pass to be scatterbrained.

*My kids eat sandwhiches in the actual shape of bread, not all fancy with the crusts off and a cookie cutter-style to coincide with the season. I suck. While I’m on the subject of lunch, I don’t even know if the littlest one ate before I put him in his crib for a nap. Cool.

*The kids are currently parked in front of the TV so I can blog about Mom guilt, which in fact causes more Mom guilt.

*I didn’t buy my kids the Elf on the Shelf (true or false?).

^ These are just small examples of the mom guilt. I haven’t even tackled the heavy hitters.

Things like: breastfeeding or not breastfeeding, working outside the home or not, losing your cool and yelling at your kids, running my kids through the McDonalds drive thru vs. packing them a nutritious bento box of organic goodness, and on and on and on.

Can we do ANYTHING right or are we doomed to somehow ruin the perfect little creatures we have been given?

And why are we feeling so guilty? Is this something all moms, throughout the ages, have had to deal with? Or has the wonderful age of Pinterest Perfectionseeped into our pores and poisoned our ability to feel confident that we are doing our best?

Is our best even going to be good enough, anyway?

The answer is simple. Yes.

I honestly believe that the moms that worry about screwing their kids up, are just conscientious enough to NOT screw their kids up (hopefully).

I won’t sit here and preach to “never feel the guilt because we are doing everything perfectly” because that’s not the truth. There is always something we can do to improve, we just have to have the ability to live and learn. It’s just important that we pick our battles, the types of people our children will become has very little to do with the shape of their sandwhiches.

So keep on doing the best you can and be sure to check in with The Tot Wrangler anytime you need to feel like an upstanding mama. There is a really good chance I will find a way to make you feel like you’re doing a wonderful job, by comparison!

 

Make sure to also check Cari’s blog by clicking here.

Telling His Teacher a Big Fat Juicy LIE!

Darcy is our latest guest blogger. Her blog http://www.sothenstories.com/is all about telling and sharing her and others stories. Check it out and if you’re inspired, share your own with her. Make sure to also check out her Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/SoThenStoriesWebsite and “like” it to receive her updates.

 

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So then…I open an email from Tucker’s 6th grade teacher that says:

“Tucker did not have his homework today; he told me this was because there was a termite infestation at home. I told him he needed to ask you to write a note explaining the situation, but he said that his familydid not believe in writing notes.

However, since our homework policy is not to accept late work, I would appreciate a note or an e-mail when unusual situations occur so that Tucker can receive full credit.
Sincerely, Mrs. Gilbert”

What the what?

I love how the teacher writes her email in such a way that she leaves open the slim possibility that indeed, we did have a termite infestation that interfered with homework completion – rather than declare, “Your son flat out lied to me today.”

(Not only did he lie, but he did so, very poorly. Termites? Really, dude? That’s the best you could come up with? And you said your family “didn’t believe” in writing notes? What religious cult forbids theWRITING OF NOTES?)

Of course, I immediately want to write back:

“Dear Mrs. Gilbert:

I was mortified to read your email. We have had no such infestation – and we have no problem writing notes.

In fact, I’m writing this note to you right now. However, I’ll email it to you instead of giving it to Tucker to deliver — since he might claim it was eaten by termites (or boll weevils or alien mutant wombats) before it gets to you.

We are extremely disappointed that Tucker would attempt to excuse his missing homework in this way. We do not have termites. We are a clean and observant family. If there were termites, we would know about it and deal with it expeditiously.

And even if we had termites, that would not preclude Tucker from completing his homework. Termites are tiny. At most, they might buzz through a couple pencils.

It’s not like we were infested by ferocious cougars, lunging alligators, or blood-sucking vampires. I could see how those would be disruptive to concentrating on one’s homework. But termites? Please. We’re made of sturdier stock than that.

As soon as Tucker comes home from school, we’ll impose consequences — and he’ll also write you an apology.

Meanwhile, please keep us posted on any other “allegations” he might make at school. (I should tell you pre-emptively that you shouldnot believe him if he claims his parents drink too much wine, gamble online, or use the F-word carelessly.)
Thank you, Darcy Perdu”

But instead I write:
“Dear Mrs. Gilbert:
I am so sorry that Tucker tried to use an excuse for his missing homework.  We don’t have termites and we have no problem writing notes.  He’ll give you the homework and a written apology tomorrow.  Thank you, Darcy”

However, I WISH I had sent the first note — because then maybe the big vocabulary words like “expeditiously” and “pre-emptively” would make the teacher think that I’m a well-bred, well-educated, well-intentioned mother — and that it’s only my son who is a deceitful heathen.

Maybe I should have mentioned a possible maternity ward mix-up between my real son and a tale-telling gypsy baby. (No offense, gypsy babies.)

– Darcy Perdu

Original Illustration for So Then Stories by Mary Chowdhury

http://www.sothenstories.com/

My Toddler Overshared for Me

Stephanie is our newest guest blogger. We mentioned her great Facebook Fan page (https://www.facebook.com/WhenCrazyMeetsExhaustion) yesterday on the WeMothers fan page, but want to draw attention to her blog today http://whencrazymeetsexhaustion.com/. She features a ‘must-read” “oversharing” section on her blog which captures funny stories (hers and guest stories) of “oversharing”. She was kind enough to let us post one of them below: “My Toddler Overshared For me”. Feel free to add your own and make sure to check her blog.

If you too want to share some of your writing and be a guest blogger on WeMothers send me an email at admin at wemothers dot com.

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Remember how sick I was yesterday? Well, today I put on my “day clothes,” as my kids call them, and headed out to the boy’s preschool parent/teacher conference. [Insert merited applause here]. I prayed that I wouldn’t crap in my pants and would like to thank Baby Jesus for hearing me. #Success.

Until…

Teacher: I’m glad to hear you’re feeling better.

Me: Thank you! But how did you know…Oh no.

When he got home, I asked my blonde angel what, JUST WHAT, information had he bestowed upon his teacher. In a nutshell:

“Oh I just said that you were re-yee, re-yee (really) sick. You were pooping and it was stinky and Dad said, ‘Turn on the vent in that bathroom!’ And you were using Ella’s wipes because your bum hurt. And you vomited and it was gross–you didn’t even eat dinner with us.”

Just when I think I’m the queen of Oversharing, here comes this pint-sized punk to trump me. That’s okay, though; live it up buddy, mommy has pee-pee pictures she plans to show your prom date.

As an aside: I’m sitting in the bathtub as I type (unsafe but necessary, for obvious reasons…), and here comes the boy to interrupt. His initial reaction to finding me? “You know we don’t poop in the bathtub.” -

See more at: http://whencrazymeetsexhaustion.com

10 Ways I Would Help Moms, If I Ruled the World

Here is the entry of our latest guest blogger, Cari, who describes herself as “a chick, just trying to navigate life as a wife and mother”. Make sure to also check out her blog at http://www.chicagonow.com/tot-wrangler

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Sometimes I sit and daydream about what it would be like if I ruled the world. Unfortunately it’s a pretty unrealistic endeavor, but maybe after reading this you will nominate me.

1. Everything would have a drive thru. It’s not because I want Americans to be anymore lazy than we already are, it’s because the country is full of moms. Moms that do NOT want to run any errands where it takes longer to get the kids in and out of the car, than it does to fetch what we need. Needing to run in somewhere just to get stamps, carting multiple kids, is legitimate torture.

2. Everything that couldn’t be a drive thru, would deliver.

3. Everything that couldn’t be drive thru or be delivered would have nice little old ladies stationed outside to watch your kids while you go and pick up what you need. Screw valet for people with nice cars, let’s make valet for moms. And I said “nice old ladies” because I’m hopeful they would be the least likely to joyride, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off-style, with your kids in tow.

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4. It would be mandatory for people to carry around suckers, the good ones like at the doctor’s office. That way when a kid is flipping their shit in a public place, you can do a community service and help out the poor chick that’s breaking a sweat and praying for someone to save her. Good kids/A-hole kids/ALL kids, have their moments. And sometimes kids have piss poor timing and their moment transpires in a public place.  It would be a whole lot cooler if people kindly give the kid a sucker to shut them the fuck up, rather than stare at the mom like she is raising a hell beast.

5. Since it’s apparently illegal to touch a pregnant woman’s belly in Pennsylvania, I’m going to amend that law and say it’s also illegal to touch a newborn’s hands. I don’t know that you didn’t just wipe your ass and not wash your hands, then you stick said dirty ass hands on my kid’s hands, and they will immediately put their hands in their mouth. They might as well have skipped a step and just licked your ass.

6. All jeans would all be vanity sized.  No one would have an effing clue what size they were, but we would all strut around thinking we were the shit. That kind of confidence can move mountains my friends.

7. Day drinking wouldn’t be frowned upon. Sometimes a mom just needs to spike her coffee with Baileys and doesn’t want to be judged about it. For days like those, there will be a number for her to call to rent-a-nanny to keep the kids safe and shit. There would be a Homeland Security-style background checks on these life savers, so I got your back ladies and gents. Don’t get all crazy, this isn’t a daily service, it’s just for emergencies only. If your day begins with a kid that smeared poop all over their crib, you have free reign to dial 800-RENT-A-NANNY.

*this service can be used for dads as well, I don’t discriminate.

8. Insurance companies would cover personal trainers for women after they give birth. No ifs, ands, or buts (no pun intended) about it.

9. Daylights Savings Time is CANCELLED. The only thing more annoying than the effects of the actual time change is listening to everyone bitch about it. Two Birds, One Stone.

10. I would be rich, but I promise not to be a dick about it.

What are some of the things you would add to complete this list?

You never know, I might need a VP someday.

Five Phrases My Kids Say that Drive Me Crazy

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Megan, is a mom and blogger at http://basementblogging.tumblr.com/ and our next guest blogger. Make sure to check out her blog and Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/hotelbassemonte. If you too would like to to see your blog entries posted and promoted on WeMothers just send us an email at admin at wemothers dot com.

There are lots of things I abhor (I’m trying not to use the word “hate” because I hate that word) hearing my kids say, especially when they are fighting with each other or criticizing my meals, but I tried to narrow down the list to the Top 5 things I hear on a regular basis – meaning at least once a week – that truly make me cringe. Please hold your judgments: let she who has never grimaced at any of the below cast the first negative comment.

1. “I’m bored” / “What can I do? Or as my 6-year old likes to say on repeat, “What can I do or eat?” I hate hearing these words because they are always said in an ultra whiny voice and because I can also hear the unspoken words that accompany them: “I’m not going to want to do any of the fun activities you are about to suggest, but please, keep racking your brain to come up with more ideas, this is mildly entertaining to me.” It really irks me when my kids say they have nothing to do because we have approximately a gazillion children’s books, around a bajillion toys/games, and enough arts & crafts activities to run a small day camp; there is absolutely no reason any child should be bored in our house. Yet they are constantly bored and they come to me to complain about it.

2. “Play with me Mommy” Don’t get me wrong, I love playing with my kids at certain times, but they usually ask me right when I’m in the middle of something and they usually want me to do something mind-numbing like a floor puzzle meant for 3-year olds that I have already done 500 times. However, I would rather do the puzzle for the 501st time than play dollhouse or some other game that requires my active participation and/or imagination. I simply don’t have the mental energy required for this kind of play in my perma-tired Mommy state. One of the reasons people have more than one child is so that the kids can play with each other and not the parents. Apparently I should have either stopped at two or gone for four (which is not going to happen, not that you asked) because my older two play beautifully together, but they exclude the three-year old, who then comes running to me for a playmate. Thanks guys.

3. “Uh-oh” Ok, this isn’t a phrase or even a word, but no two syllables in the English language can instill the kind of fear that “uh-oh” does when uttered by a child over 3 (under 3 it’s cute), especially when it immediately follows a crashing or thudding noise.  My kids have a pretty high threshold for what they consider to be property destruction, so if they think it’s an “uh-oh,” there’s a pretty good chance I’ll have a much stronger word for whatever happened.

4. “Wipe me, Mommy!” or worse, the dreaded, “It’s a messy one, Mommy!” There are few things in life as degrading and demoralizing as being summoned to the bathroom to wipe someone else’s messy bottom.  I swear, if I never hear those words again I will be a happy woman.

5. “Watch this, Mommy!” I love to see my kids do new things, and when they are proud of their accomplishment I am usually even more proud. But I’m sorry, I don’t need to see all 57 underwater handstand attempts, just grab my attention when you’re ready to show me your best one.  The phrase in itself isn’t bad, it’s only when it’s repeated over, and over, and over so that I cannot turn my head or blink my eyes without getting scolded, “You didn’t watch me!” that it gets tiresome.  Then it gets multiplied by three voices, as they all vie for my undivided attention, which I just cannot abide.  I have been called out on more than one occasion for absently nodding my head, smiling, and saying, “Great job, honey!” before my child has even performed the action I was supposed to have watched. Oops.

Now, I know in ten years I’ll have a worse list (“Meet my new boyfriend” “Get out of my life!” “You’re SO embarrassing, Mom!” to name a few) and I will yearn for the days when my daughters wanted me to play with them or watch them do something.  But I’m pretty sure I will never, ever, miss wiping their bottoms.

[Disclaimer: After having what I thought was a harmlessly humorous post about “First-Born Problems” get monstrously misconstrued by a few people on BlogHer, let me just be clear for anybody who does not speak Sarcasm: this is not a serious post. OK, maybe it’s half-serious. You may not think I’m funny, but don’t think I’m a bad mom based on this post – there are plenty of other reasons to come to that conclusion other than this post. Thank you.]

The creepy things they tell us

Today we want to feature Nadege Nicoll. Nadege is a writer and a mom of three. We like her “angle” of writing her stories from a kids perspective. Check out her blog and her books at http://nadegenicoll.com/

 

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Parents make no sense. I hope you are getting it by now.

They spend a lot of time telling us to stay away from people who behave in a weird way. Yet whose behavior is weirder than the tooth fairy’s? Let’s just picture her for a second; she sits in her home, with drawers and closets full of kids’ teeth she has been collecting for many years. Doesn’t that creep you out to think that somewhere in the world lives an old lady who collects children’s teeth?  If anybody like that lives next door to you, I am sure your parents will wisely advise you to NEVER ring her bell. Not even on Halloween. Yet, they don’t mind when she comes in YOUR house, at night, in YOUR bedroom, grabs under YOUR pillow. I mean what goes through our parents’ head?

Whenever I lose a tooth, of course I am really excited to get some money. But I really don’t want to wake up when the tooth fairy comes in so I hide all the way under my cover.

Anyway I am not too pleased with the tooth fairy these days. I think she is a little cheap if you ask me. Plus, she is really unfair, because I heard she gave ten bucks to a kid in my class for his tooth. She never gave ME ten bucks. Not even half. So what’s up with that? Are some teeth more expensive than others? Does the price depend on where you live? The size of the teeth? The kid’s age? What’s the formula?

 

Joy Degl’s Preemie Success Story

Yesterday was the World Prematurity day, so we wanted to help Jennifer Degl raise awareness for this “issue”. Jennifer gave birth to Joy, a micro-preemie born at 23 weeks. Jennifer started to capture every moment in a journal which then evolved into a blog and a book. It’s a beautiful story worth sharing. Make sure to also visit her blog http://micropreemie.net/ and check out her book available on Amazon. 

 

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In honor of World Prematurity Day, my husband John turned our WHUD (100.7 fm) interview into a beautiful video. Click below to watch and continue reading to learn our story:

Radio and Video Interview Montage 2013

Thankfully, most new parents have no idea what the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) is. They probably heard the word and then put it out of their mind because premature deliveries happen to other people. No one gets pregnant and plans on having a child born too early; requiring life saving medical interventions. Many expectant parents take a tour of the hospital they plan on delivering in and peek at the “well nursery” and call it a day. And that is exactly what they should do because thinking about all of the things that could go wrong during a pregnancy might stop one from getting pregnant in the first place! But, we owe it to our future generations to make their mothers aware of both the causes and warning signs of premature delivery as well as encourage medical advances in areas that support premature babies.

November is Prematurity Awareness Month and November 17th is World Prematurity Day.   On World Prematurity Day, countries in nearly every part of the world will take action to raise awareness of what can be done to reduce preterm births and better care for babies born too soon.

The United States preterm birth rate peaked in 2006 (at 12.8 percent), but has declined each year since, resulting in an estimated 176,000 fewer babies born preterm over the six-year period, according to the March of Dimes. Although the US has made great strides in reducing our preterm birth rate from historic highs, we still have the highest rate of preterm birth of any industrialized country. A premature birth costs around twelve times as much as full-term healthy birth resulting in the US spending about $26 billion a year on prematurity.

Most of you already know that my daughter was born at 23 weeks and is considered a micro preemie. A micro preemie is a baby delivered before 26 weeks gestation. Any delivery before 37 weeks is considered premature and rightfully so. The March of Dimes is now advocating that a pregnancy should be continued for at least 39 weeks if possible.

Premature deliveries are the leading cause of newborn death. Babies who survive an early birth often face the risk of serious and sometimes lifelong health problems, such as breathing problems, jaundice, developmental delays, vision loss and cerebral palsy.

My daughter was born premature as a result of my 100% placenta previa. I was in and out of the hospital from 17 weeks gestation until her delivery due to extreme hemorrhaging. I almost lost my baby and my own life on four different occasions during my pregnancy. I was given countless units of blood over the course of two months on bed rest both in and out of the hospital. All this was going on while I had three young boys (then 7, 5 and 3 years old) at home who were scared and confused.

My daughter’s delivery was not as a mother dreams it should be. She was delivered after hours of trying to stop my fourth hemorrhage without success. I was put to sleep and did not awaken for almost 12 hours after having a hysterectomy due the placenta attaching to some internal organs. By then, my daughter was in the NICU, where she would remain for 121 days.

I could not see my daughter, who we named Joy, for two days due to my complications. When I was finally wheeled in to see her, I was shocked! She did not look like my other children did as newborns. Micro preemie’s look like tiny little aliens with transparent skin. They have numerous tubes and wires attached to them while a ventilator initiates each breath.

Today Joy is 18 months old and is amazing! My daughter was very lucky to have the doctors and nurses that she did. Joy escaped 95 percent of the complications that typically affect such premature babies, but she is left with some scar tissue on her lungs that can turn an ordinary cold into pneumonia. This should diminish with time. We are so blessed to have her in our lives and as a family; we vowed to turn our struggles into something positive.

Let’s use World Prematurity Day to honor those babies who lost their lives due to prematurity and vow to help stop this from happening to future babies. They need our voices.

Here the link to Jennifer’s page: http://micropreemie.net/

Cleanliness Is Next to…Nah.

Samantha is a mom of three who recently picked up blogging and our latest guest blogger. She’s a great writer so make sure to check out her blog and give her some love here.

Before I had children, I assumed I would never let my car or my house descend into the sticky-wrapper corndog mess in which I’d found my parent-friends living. As in many other matters, it wasn’t long before reality mowed me down and cut my hair without asking.

I’d like to make my children sit and eat at the table each night like good little 1950s TV characters who don’t use their shirts as napkins, but we’re frequently too busy for that.

Besides, strapping my kids down with seatbelts is the only way to get them to eat fast.

We have plenty of leisurely Sunday dinners during which my kids get to poke at their roasted cauliflower and ask earnest, thoughtful questions like, “Mom, why didn’t you name me ‘Lightening Bolt’?”

But if I need them to eat and run, I do it in the car.

While I’m plotting paltry shortcuts and circling roundabouts on two wheels, my kids are usually jostling around in the back of the car, trying to keep their water bottles upright and shouting things like,

“Mom, I kind of barfed in my mouth!”

No big deal.

Does it really matter if you add one more layer to the stench of bodily borscht that wanders out of the car when the doors open?

My gorgeous, regal, and incontinent Rhodesian Ridgeback, Tenzin, has a bottomless bladder despite the row of maple saplings he wilts each morning. He dribbles more than my 1930s bath fixtures. He does this all over my minivan floor mats. And no, you can’t crank a 10 year-old dog’s junk closed; my toddler has tried that with kitchen tongs.

That same toddler blew wet bubbles out of his fish lips for fifteen minutes in the car the other day until he was covered, chin to nipples, in warm spit. I turned to hand him a napkin and my breath mint slid down my throat and into my tonsils—I hacked it out onto the dashboard and kept the napkin for myself. My older two discard banana peels in the wayback as if they were flicking fuzz off their sleeves. They wipe their nostril treasure on the windows where it hardens into salt-flavored Sun Chips.

If I allow myself to try and stop this, it turns me into the type of mom I don’t want to be. But last week, when I found a fraternity of meat-eating fruit flies living in my cup holders, I realized it had gone too far.

I had my car professionally cleaned, and I felt celestial for thirty seconds. I sped away from those car wash guys and my fifty bucks like I’d already proven I could live without all the apple cores, loose Lego heads, smashed Craisins, and things that look like pebbles but are not.

I got home just as my cleaning friend was finishing up my floors. I slipped my shoes off and walked around on my toes, reveling in the perfectitude that was my house, my car, and surely something about my life itself:

Could I suddenly listen to my friends, my children, and my spouse as much as I should or wanted?

Would I no longer say inappropriate things in front of my mother or inadvertently insult my in-laws?

I felt odd and weak, clutching guiltily for something I knew I couldn’t have.

Five minutes later, my children arrived home from school.

I held my breath.

They walked into the foyer, inhaled two little lungfuls of natural cleaning fumes (“IT SMELLS AWESOME IN HERE!”), and dropped their backpacks and jackets in a heap. Then they bowled their shoes back toward the front door, leaving a lane of sidewalk dirt that would inevitably make its way between my bedsheets.

“DUDE!” I said loudly, pointing wildly to the twaddle at my feet.

“Ahh. Sorry, Mom,” my daughter said sheepishly, as she picked up her jacket and flung it down the stairs toward the mudroom we never use. That was better. And that would have to be okay.

24 Clear Signs You’re a Mom

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This list was originally posted on the Huffington Post.

We asked the moms of www.wemothers.com what it means to be a mom. Here is what they told us. You know you are a mom when:

1. Instead of running from projectile vomit, you run towards it.

2. You do more in seven minutes than most people do all day.

3. Happy hour has become the 60 minutes between your kids going to bed and you going to bed.

4. A night of drinking requires more recovery time than minor surgery.

5. A glass of wine counts as a serving of fruit.

6. You have mini-therapy sessions all day long with anyone who will listen.

7. Going to the grocery store by yourself is a vacation.

8. You can experience heaven and hell at the same time.

9. You think of physical pain on three levels: pain, excruciating pain and stepping on a Lego.

10. You have the ability to hear a sneeze through closed doors in the middle of the night, two bedrooms away, while your SO snores next to you.

11. You’d rather have a 103 degree fever than watch one of your kids suffer with it.

12. You’d rather go to sleep than have sex.

13. A 15-minute shower with the door locked feels like a day at the spa.

14. Peeing with an audience is part of the daily routine.

15. You use baby wipes to clean up random spills and the dash of your car.

16. You lock yourself in the bathroom and pretend to have diarrhea just to get a break.

17. You love Moms’ Night Out and Date Night with the Hubs.

18. You have a secret chocolate stash because frankly, you’re sick of sharing.

19. You’ve been washing the same load of laundry for three days because you forgot to dry it.

20. You realize you’ve been watching Nick Jr. alone, even though your kids have been in bed for over 30 minutes.

21. You can cook dinner, breastfeed, talk on the phone and yell at the kids, all without breaking stride or missing any of the TV show you are watching.

22. You get more excited about the Mini Boden Catalogue than J Crew’s.

23. You decide to stick with your car for the next decade because a) you can’t afford to switch and b) you haven’t found a car wash that knows how to get all the milk stains and glitter removed.

24. By the end of the day, brushing your teeth feels like a huge accomplishment.

Sometimes I feel like a crappy mom, and I’d just like to get Alex’s attention for 2 mins to tell him what I think about him. Today, I decided I’d write him a letter

letterA new guest entry from our friend Annie.
[Sometimes I feel like a crappy mom, and I'd just like to get Alex's attention for 2 mins to tell him what I think about him. Today, I decided I'd write him a letter]
Dear Alex,
When I dropped you off at school this morning, I saw that look I see on your face sometimes. That “defeated” or “depressed” look that I feel I put there with my homework reminder.
It breaks my heart every time we talk and you get that look. It makes me sad that my words made you feel that way.
I love you. I love you more than you’ll ever be able to conceive. That’s what mom’s do, they love their kids. Dad’s love their kids too.
What you may not know, or understand right now, is that we have a job. Our job is to raise a child who can go out into the world and be confident, successful and happy. If that means we yell sometimes, to get a point across, then we yell. If it means we punish or take things away when what we asked to be done, isn’t done, it’s because we’re trying to make a point and trying to guide you to better choices.
You are NOT stupid. You are a WONDERFUL child. You are my heart and soul.
All I ever want for you is your happiness. I want you to know what I know, that you are a wonderful person. I want you to think good things about yourself so that when someone else tries to make you feel bad, you can laugh it off and ignore their taunts. I want you to KNOW what I KNOW about you. I want you to BELIEVE what I BELIEVE about you.
You are loving.
You are kind.
You are smart.
You are funny.
You deserve from life, all your willing to ask of it.
You will always have me in your corner.
You deserve to be happy.
Love always,
Mom
Make sure to check out Annie’s blog at http://musingsmiddle-agedmom.blogspot.com/
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“I didn’t suffer through 10 months of acid reflux while carrying you to raise an idiot” or The 13 Most Important Things I Can Teach My Children

A new entry from our guest blogger Anna.

Mothers tend to freak out over everything.  It is in our very nature as mothers.  Huge things, we’ve got on lock, but smallish things and we go into a full-fledged panic.  I’ve yet to run across a mother that operated differently.  So I spend a fair amount of time reading about how to be a better parent.  I’m an awesome parent but I strive for perfection.  I understand that I will never get there and that is fine.  It’s in the striving.  Everything is in the striving.  Life IS the striving.  All this research means that I’m freaking out over whether or not I should have structured crafts or just put out supplies.  My children are too young to even do art projects so this might be slightly premature.  Or is it?  *panics* I sometimes get so caught up in worrying that I’m a lazy parenting for not having introduced finger painting yet that I forgot what this whole thing is really about.  I’m trying to raise a decent human being.  I’m trying to help my children along on their journey of becoming who they are and who they were meant to be.

And I haven’t done my job if they haven’t learned the following:

1)      All people deserve respect.  I don’t even need to explain this, hopefully.

2)      The world is scary and beautiful.  It is awesome and awful.  It’s mean and gross and there are some people out there that will demonstrate to you the very worst traits of humankind.  They will be mean to you.  Bad things will happen.  WONDERFUL things will happen.  And it’s all going to be ok.

3)      You get what you give.  If you give awesomeness to the universe, you will get awesomeness back.

4)      Stand up for what you believe in.  It will hurt but you won’t be able to live with yourself if you don’t.  You might even look like a jerk and people might hate you but heroes are people who do things with the understanding that they will never get any credit for them and might get hated for them, even when they are the right things to do and it should seem like an obvious, no-brainer.

5)      Arrested Development is a great show.  It was a crime that it got cancelled.  A CRIME.  But we can all get real excited about the new episodes coming up in May.

6)      There is almost never black or white.  97% of things fall in the gray area.

7)      MY world revolves around you but THE world does not.  Don’t be a jerk.

8)      The world is FULL of Jackies.  Don’t be a Jackie.  Be a Donna.  ALWAYS be a Donna.

(I use “That 70’s Show” in many of my examples.  There is a lot of wisdom in that show.  I think we can also agree that I watch too much tv.)   My point is that Donna is great.  She is tall.  She towers over most of the boys and that is fine.  She picks a boyfriend that is good to her.  She is super smart and cool and funny.  She knows it.  I’ll just put her qualities in list form to save time (a list within a list?  GET OUT!):  Kind.  Un-fussy.  Real.  Fun.  Vulnerable.  Adventurous.  Talented.

So be the Donna.  You won’t regret it.

9)      Travel.  Call me every 12 minutes but travel all over the world.  Spread your wings and fly and just please call me at least four times per hour, or else I’m going with you, and I’m old now.  I mostly just worry about stuff, so I’m no fun.

10)   Listen to your mother.  I know you don’t want to hear this but just do it. 

11)   One of the many gifts I have given you is the gift of anticipating trends.  You’ll be reading the trendy book and wearing the cool shoes six months before it is cool.  You are welcome.  Use it wisely.

12)   To my boys:  Women are not property.  They are not objects.  No means no.  NO ONE IS ASKING FOR IT.  If you see someone that needs help, you will help.  You will not tweet about what a slut someone is, ever.  You are not a man if you don’t stand up for what is right.  Be a man.  Be like your dad. 

13)   I love you.  Your dad and I, we love you.  We love you so much and we are always looking out for you.  We will probably disappoint you and you will probably disappoint us.  That’s ok.  We will never stop loving you.  You will do stupid stuff.  We know this because we also did stupid stuff.  Lots of it.  No matter what you do, we love you and we have your back.  Always.  Every single time.  We don’t care who you love.  We don’t care if you choose to be part of the opposite political affiliation.  But I’m going to be really mad if I have to sit behind you in a court room. 

It is a lot easier to stress out over finger painting than to take on the big stuff in parenting.  But I didn’t suffer through 10 months of acid reflux while carrying you to raise an idiot.  And cough into your elbow.  Nobody likes people who don’t cover their mouths when they cough.

 

Make sure to check out Anna’s blog at http://annythemommy.wordpress.com/

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Hatty’s new baby diary: Elodie is 3-weeks old!

Well, the time seems to be flying by, I forgot that whole newborn thing where you think you’ll get so much done cos they sleep so much and then you rarely manage to even get into the shower by midday, let alone get to paying a bill or writing an email.   Actually today was quite a bit better- I think I got to 930 for the shower and now I am even finally writing another blog post with one finger while my daughter feeds. Slow going. That whole first week of Elodie’s life, my husband was away at the Sundance film festival and although I had support in the house it was strange him missing those first amazing days of her life…..and of course he missed my MiLK COMinG IN.  Well, I bet he was relieved about that.  The first time I was a complete emotional wreck, couldn’t stop crying, the baby couldn’t latch on (flat nipple nightmare), he was starving, and the whole thing escalated into a chronic feeding problem of not enough milk as I never was able to establish a good supply and had to supplement as he was losing so much weight.  The second time was a bit better, still nightmare latching trouble but she was bigger and stronger from the get go and somehow we managed through.  This time, my nipples were damaged even before I left the hospital, the lactation consultant, also at the hospital, thought her tongue was a bit short which might cause problems but somehow I was more relaxed than I had been before.  My milk came in and somehow I had to hold it together, I had other children in the house, my husband was away, and thanks to Kelly at the Pump Station in Santa Monica, who gave me her time when I really needed it,( and in the event we only needed about 10 minutes) and I came away with what I needed- that and another strong big baby who knew how to suck, I think ‘barracuda’ style is the official term, and we got through it.  I can’t quite describe my joy when at her 2 week check ( a few days over the 2 weeks) she was already 11 oz over her birth weight.  It is a great feeling and has meant that I feel much more ‘present’ than I ever did in this amazing new born period of their life, the other two times it was fraught with worry over weight and painful feeding.  Another reason to be so grateful for the chance of a third.
About Hatty: When she lived in England Hatty worked as a general practitioner and she now lives with her husband Greg in Santa Monica CA and works as a professional opera singer.
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Hatty’s new baby diary – baby Elodie at 10 days old

Well, where to start??  After my last post, the week continued rather the same.  Hours of contractions that never came to anything.  I had never experienced anything like this with my other two-contractions came, they got stronger, I went to hospital, had a baby and that was that.  This was so frustrating, and exhausting and emotionally draining.  Thursday night (17th Jan) they started up again, carried on all night-I got a couple of hours sleep- into the next day. My husband and I walked the hills near our house 3 times that day-he was leaving the next day to go to the Sundance Film festival for the premiere of his film and I was filled with a terrible sadness that he really was going to miss this incredible and special moment in our marriage, in our family, I couldn’t really believe that it had come to this, and it was only her due date that Thursday, so it wasn’t even although she was late.  By 5pm we rang the hospital to find out our options.  The midwife knew what had been going on and for so long too, she knew I was pretty exhausted and suggested we came in and tried a pessary to increase the strength of the contractions.  We quickly got ready and left for the hospital, it felt like this time we’d be coming home with our bundle of joy, one way or another.  I was hooked up to a monitor, and sure enough there were these contractions but they just weren’t strong enough to dilate me-depressing!!  They tried the pessary-4 hours later-nothing more…so then it was decided to hook me up to a pitocin drip which would definitely get the contractions going.  I was worried, having heard that the contractions can get really strong and overwhelming with this kind of ‘induction’ but I was ready to have this baby, I wanted my husband to be there, and we went ahead.  In the event it felt like a normal labor progression-it was the middle of the night by now (early hours of the 19th Jan), my husband and my Mum took turns to support me and the other took a nap.  Then it came to the point (about 6cm) when they could break my waters-wow, things really kicked in then, the last few centimeters were incredibly intense and although it was almost unbearable the staff and my husband and Mum were amazing at controlling me and making sure I didn’t panic.  I was just so desperate to push, i was good at that bit!!  Finally that moment came and  a few contractions later the head was emerging.  All the time there was this thought in the back of my head about knowing that it was the time of my husband’s plane to Utah, but the staff had all been in on this and that is why they had broken my waters-everyone wanted him to be there, and of course he was.  We had this amazing moment when our daughter emerged and she looked right at us, and then he was gone.  Wow, the elation I felt, holding her at last, not being pregnant any more, knowing I would never have to go through that again and feeling complete, was unforgettable.  I am not even going to go into the fact that my uterus wouldn’t contract and that I lost a litre of blood and what they had to do to stop it, I had my baby Elodie Grace in my arms.  Greg actually missed his flight by a minute, and some time after the birth, I heard he was back (in the event for only another 15 minutes or so until the next flight), he walked into the room with my other two babies-I burst into tears and we were a family-what an amazing day.

About Hatty: When she lived in England Hatty worked as a general practitioner and she now lives with her husband Greg in Santa Monica CA and works as a professional opera singer.

Hatty’s new baby diary: ARRIVAL!

Congratulations to Hatty and the birth of baby girl Elodie! She was born on Jan 19 and weighed in at 9 lbs 2 oz.

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A mom’s worst nightmare: Anna needed to tell her story and we wanted to help her spread it.

Anna is our latest guest blogger. She is a mom of two and lives in Southwestern Virginia. Her post captures her journey of last year, when she discovered that her son had a rare congenital disease. If you too want to write or post an entry on our blog please contact us at admin@wemothers.com

This post may not be particularly well written and it won’t be funny. It is a story I need to tell. And hey, thanks for stopping by. More of you read this than I ever thought would and many of you have said very kind things. It warms my heart and I appreciate it.
Tomorrow is an anniversary for my family. Tomorrow, one year ago, we got up at 4:30 am to take our son to the hospital for life-saving surgery. One year ago, I kissed my son goodbye and prayed harder than I’ve ever prayed while the good doctor performed a miracle.
October 2011 was not my favorite month. My mom fell down our basement stairs and broke her ankle into a million pieces. Just a few weeks later, we discovered a lump on our son’s neck. At first, we tried not to pay attention because it was very small. Within a week, it was enormous. We c couldn’t get in with our pediatrician and saw a nurse practitioner.  She took one look at his neck and said “I’m going to get the doctor.” We were immediately sent to the hospital for an ultrasound. The next day we had an appointment with an ENT that generally has a five month waiting list.
I’d never heard the words “thyroglossal duct cyst” before that day. It is a rare thing, a congenital thing, and usually shows itself in preschoolers and adults. So, Ezra had a thyroglossal duct cyst and it was seriously infected. The goal from that first day on was to try to get him well enough to have surgery. The placement of the cyst was complicated, basically in his airway. He was struggling big time with asthma as well. We saw the ENT at least once a week and often twice. He would take our phone calls on Saturday nights or Sunday mornings.
It took three months to get him well enough for surgery. We had a failed attempt in December of 2012 in which he stopped breathing on the operating table not once but twice. We decided to take a month, another round of antibiotics, and another round of steroids.
For three months, Ezra ran a fever, had an ear infection, asthma and a major cough. We spent lots of time in the emergency room when breathing treatments at home weren’t enough. Turns out our home was full of mold as well.
I was pregnant and exhausted and working 35-40 hours per week with the craziest hours imaginable. Just needed to throw that in there.
We finally got him well enough to try again and we met my parents at the hospital at some ungodly hour. I will never be able to describe the terror I felt then. The night before Ezra’s surgery, I held him in my arms and cried. There sat the best thing I’ve ever done and I knew that if I lost him, I’d die too. I was so afraid. Every night I’d lie in the bed, listening to him cough and feeling my heart break again and again. I cried every night. I couldn’t even think about being pregnant, it was all too much.
Sitting in the waiting room was excruciating. Dr. P had prepared us for a long surgery. He thought it might take up to four hours but we had no clue. After only an hour and a half (the longest hour and a half of my life), the waiting room phone rang and it was for me. Dr. P was on the other end. “It’s over! We’re done!” He told me that he felt 99% sure that he’d removed the entire cyst and he’d also removed the middle part of the typhoid bone. The swelling was so great from all the infection that we’d have to wait before we knew it was all gone for certain. I hung up the phone and bolted from the waiting room. I have never needed to get out of anywhere as much as I needed to get out of that room. The tears came when I got to the parking lot and found the husband. Relief washed over me in waves. I wept.
Finally, I was allowed in the recovery room. I got in bed with Ezra and held him as he woke up. His black curls were spread out over the pillow and he was pale. He had a bandage on his neck and he looked so small lying there in is his tiger print hospital gown. I held him and thought about the night he was born. I remembered how I felt when I saw him, “Ah, there you are. I’d know you anywhere.”
We moved to a room in the pediatric unit. I sat by his hospital crib and watched him sleep. I was giddy with relief. We only had to stay one night and spent the next few days at home spending equal time resting and playing.
Our journey wasn’t over. Ezra had another surgery and a few more scares before his neck healed completely. Dr. P told us that he’d never had so much trouble with a thyroglossal duct cyst, nor had he seen one in a patient so young. The whole process took 8 months.
Last week, we went for our final visit with the good doctor. We’ve come such a long way since last January. I am now a stay-at-home mom. We welcomed our baby girl in May and she is a princess. We’ve watched Ezra grow into a sweet and hilarious 2-year-old. His asthma seems to be gone. He sings, dances, talks and loves life. Last year seems like a distant nightmare.
He will always have a scar on his neck. When I look at it, I have such gratitude to the universe and God and Dr. P for saving his life.
I want to thank my parents for dropping everything to help on numerous occasions, even when one of them had a compound ankle fracture. I want to thank our babysitters whether they are reading this or not. Most of you worked for free and keeping a sick kid is no fun at all. Without you, we would never have been able to go to work (not that we wanted to leave our sick baby but sometimes you don’t have a choice).
The end of 2011 and most of 2012 was hard. I couldn’t be more glad that it’s over. Some years are so hard that they give you PTSD.
How to end a post like this? I have no idea. But I have to go because Miriam just properly crawled for the first time.
In the words of e.e. cummings: “thank you God for most this amazing day”.

 

Visit Anna’s blog at http://annythemommy.wordpress.com/

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Hatty’s new baby diary: 3 days to go

Well I ended up at the hospital yesterday morning.  Woke up and started contracting every 2-5 minutes.  They weren’t crazily strong but they were coming so frequently my husband thought we should go to the hospital.  That is what they had said, after all, if I was contracting every 5 minutes for an hour, seeing as it was baby no.3…..bag packed in the car and off we went.  The Team-me, my husband and my Mum.  They hooked me up and got a nice trace of the baby and the contractions, but the exam was similar to my appointment at the clinic last Tuesday.  That was depressing.  These weren’t strong enough for things to progress, even though they were coming so frequently.  I hadn’t known anything like this, with both my other two the contractions started they got stronger, I went to hospital and had the baby.  This stop/start long drawn out phase was kind of exhausting, emotionally mainly.  We left and just got on with the day.  I felt bad for my children that I came home empty handed but they were amazingly good about it.  The contractions didn’t progress despite a long walk to the park, penalty shoot out with my son and a walk back…….spicy thai fried rice today and more walking, and I’ve tried pretty much everything in the book.  I feel resigned now, more relaxed that she is coming in her own time.  Probably a bit cold today anyway to bring a baby into the world.

About Hatty: When she lived in England Hatty worked as a general practitioner and she now lives with her husband Greg in Santa Monica CA and works as a professional opera singer.

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Hatty’s new baby diary: due any minute now!

The fourth in a series of posts about Hatty’s experiences having her third child.

Beyond frustrated.  Tuesday I go to my appointment, am having some Braxton Hicks contractions and some are stronger, midwife thinks it might even be worth staying around the hospital seeing as she can stretch me to 3cm too and the contractions are coming quite regularly.  I’m not ready for that so we go home, they continue on but aren’t really getting stronger and then they stop about 1am.  Woken in the night by a few more, and then before I know it, it is Wednesday and another day without meeting my baby.  The week has continued like this and it is wearing me out.  Everyone is excited and then frustrated when she isn’t coming.  The children don’t know what is going on.  This may be too  much information but got to get it off my chest:  mucus plug came yesterday morning so I’m thinking , right that’s definitely it, today is the day.  I AM STILL HERE today, sipping tea with a friend trying to work out how I can get it off my mind and think about something else even for a moment.  Haven’t figured that one out yet.

About Hatty: When she lived in England Hatty worked as a general practitioner and she now lives with her husband Greg in Santa Monica CA and works as a professional opera singer.

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Hatty’s new baby diary: 10 days to go!

The third in a series of posts about Hatty’s experiences having her third child.

Sleeplessness.  Agghhh, another of those nights.  I’m hauling this big belly from side to side in the bed and can’t get comfortable, my mind is alert and won’t switch off.  Too exciting, too much anticipation.   Read more…
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Hatty’s new baby diary: 11 days to go

The second in a series of posts about Hatty’s experiences having her third child.

Stayed out too late last night.  I felt full of energy and ready to party, had a few strong Braxton Hicks contractions at dinner and thought maybe things might start but no.   Read more…

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Hatty’s new baby diary: 2 week’s to go!

The first in a series of posts about Hatty’s experiences having her third child.

Well, that was a milestone.  My second-born, Anna Rose, was 5 yesterday.  She was very clear that she was not going to be sharing her birthday with anyone.   Read more…

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One mom’s thoughts on having a baby in the US versus the UK

The writer is Los Angeles resident, Harriet Frasier, a British general practitioner and professional opera singer who moved from London to the States with her young family and is now expecting her third child.

This is my 3rd and I feel a long way from home.  I am a trained British doctor and know the National Health Service system in my country like the back of my hand.   Read more…

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Essentials for new born Twins

A friend of ours had twins one year before we did. Because we knew she liked to research everything we asked her for her advice on what we really needed to get ready for the arrival of the twins. Read more…

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What am I doing here?

I’ve been talking about starting a blog for a long time.  Well, I’ve been talking about it in my head to myself for a long time.

A year ago, I had surgery.  Spinal surgery.  I got depressed.  I felt old.  Too old.  Where were the dreams of my youth?  Where was the girl who used to dance around in her bedroom with the headphones on and dream of the stage, and the lights, and entertaining people. Read more…

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Great & simple Christmas decoration idea

Only works in cold weather of course: take a balloon. Fill it with water. Add food coloring and let freeze. Once frozen remove the balloon skin. And there you have gorgeous ice balloons.

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How and why we simplify Christmas

This is our first guest post from Kelin, an executive chef and now a stay-at-home mom. Make sure to check out her blog

OK, so I don’t have a lot of time or even a recipe to share today (I know, bad food blogger!), but I did want to spend the few minutes I do have sharing something important to me Read more…

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Top tips for staying sane during Thanksgiving

As if you need reminding, Thanksgiving can be sa stressful time of year for mothers! Traveling to see friends or relatives (or in-laws!). Dealing with every one’s different dietary needs and demands. Keeping the kids entertained without resorting to just sticking them in front of the TV or computer screen. Read more…

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Celebrity new moms set unrealistic expectations for other new moms

The weeklies and entertainment blogs are full of features about how quickly celebrity mothers lost their baby weight after giving birth. Heidi Klum, Beyonce, Victora Beckham and Gisele Bundchen all seemed to regain their pre-pregnancy shape within a few short weeks.  Read more…

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Get some Retail Therapy at WeMothers

Retail Therapy is a carefully curated collection of products that all mothers will appreciate. Each product chosen has very high user ratings and is available for purchase online through trusted retailers including Amazon.com. Like all the best window shopping, the experience is easy and fun. Read more…

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Do we all need to disconnect to reconnect?

The cover from The New Yorker magazine a couple of years ago is a very funny, yet sad commentary on how being connected through our smart phones is disconnecting us from the people around us. The light from the doorway lights up the faces of the trick-or-treaters. The light from the phones lights up the faces of their parents waiting at the end of the driveway. Smart phones are frighteningly addictive – in many studies people say they couldn’t imagine life without theirs – because they give us instant gratification in the form of texts, instant messages, emails and games. But they also stop us from communicating with real people in real time, including our children.

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Exercise as effective as medications in treating depression in new mothers

A growing body of research indicates that exercise is an effective treatment for depression and is comparable to medications. Traditionally, exercise has been recommended for people with mild-to-moderate depression. But as two clinical trials have found, exercise can alleviate major depression as effectively as medications. And there’s no evidence that exercise has a negative impact on breast-feeding.

 

 

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Mothers can now track their moods over time

WeMothers has a ‘My Moods’ feature that allows mothers to track how they have been feeling over the period of time they chose, and see which emotions they’ve experienced most often.

We Mothers is a website that is currently in beta (or ‘test’) phase, which allows moms in the USA and Canada to track their feelings and see how other mothers are feeling.

Mothers can sign up through Facebook here.

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WeMothers launches new way for moms to share feelings

WeMothers.com has been launched as a beta (or “test”) site. It gives mothers in the USA and Canada a unique way to share their feelings. Mothers can sign up through Facebook and create a personal  profile. They can then log their emotions using a “mood wheel” and write a mood diary that only they can see. A map shows the moods of mothers in real time without revealing any personal information about who they are. The beta site is being launched to only a small number of users at first to hear their feedback and make improvements.

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A 4-year old on a mountain bike run. Adorable!

Click here to watch the video.

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Is it okay to breastfeed in public?

In Detroit, Michigan, a bus driver threatened to kick a woman off a public bus unless she stopped breastfeeding her two-week-old child. Read more…

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Why our kids need to stay physically active

Research by Nike found that in just two generations, the rate of active play, physical education, and overall physical activity has dropped by 20% in the U.K., 32% in the U.S., and 45% in China. Read more…

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How to lose that post baby weight

Going on an official diet could derail your post-pregnancy weight loss goals. Read more…

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Mom turns a messy problem into a successful business idea

Mother Debbie Wiener created the Paint Pen to touch up the paint on the walls in her home that has taken a beating by her sons and husband. Read more…

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7 out of 10 kids in homes with tablet devices use the tablets themselves

Some more facts and figures about how kids are using them and what effects they are having can be seen in this infographic from Schools.com

 

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Twins might sleep better together

In the U.S, about three of every 100 pregnant women give birth to twins or triplets.  Read more…

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Working mothers have mixed emotions

Motherhood brings many difficult decisions, but perhaps the most fiercely debated is whether women should work outside the home, especially when their children are small. Read more…

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Pink is an amazing mother

Singer Pink might be an unlikely role model for motherhood, but she trying to do her best for child and that’s what makes mothers like Pink amazing. As she told Cosmo magazine in a recent interview  “I’ve exorcised a lot of my demons [becoming a mother], but I’m still working on myself.  I think I’ll be a work in progress for the rest of my life”. Pink gave birth to a little girl, Willow in June of 2011 with her husband Corey Hart.

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Why is my baby still awake?!

Getting your baby to go to sleep can be tough at times. Because prolonged or animated eye contact with you is one of the most stimulating things for your little love, one tip is to avert your eyes when you’re putting him to sleep or calming her when she wakes.

For more tips take a look at this resource on Parenting.com

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Is organic baby food worth the extra cost?

Not for their nutritional value, but if you’re worried about the pesticides used in non-organic foods or the environmental impact, then they probably are worth it. Read more…

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Brooke Shields – a very successful only child

Brooke Christa Shields was born May 31, 1965 and is a successful actress and model. Some of her better-known movies include Pretty Baby and The Blue Lagoon, as well as TV shows such as Suddenly Susan, That ’70s Show and Lipstick Jungle. Several studies show that firstborns and only children, like Brooke, usually reach higher educational goals, obtain greater prestige and acquire more net worth, while a middle child is likely to struggle a bit more.

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How does divorce affect the kids?

Children of  divorce tend to fall behind in their math and social skills and may not catch up with their peers, a study shows.  Read more…

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How to shake those Monday morning blues

Many mothers feel a little bit down on Monday mornings.  Read more…

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Pregnant mothers take to the runway

Pregnant models, complete with pregnant bellies and strollers, took over New York’s Fashion Week this week. ”I feel amazing,” said mom model Lauren Jimeson, who is 37 weeks pregnant and strutted in a cream cocktail dress with cut-outs on the sleeves. “It’s just a great message that you can be fashionable and still be a mom and still look great and feel great.”

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Look at this amazingly cute and tiny newborn baby

The miracle of life should never cease to amaze.

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5 top tips for fussy eaters

Often it’s a real struggle to get the kids to eat healthy things, like vegetables, as part of their daily diets. Here are some tips that might help: Read more…

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5 top tips for dealing with the Terrible Twos

When your toddler starts to say “No!” to everything and throws frequent tantrums, you know you have probably entered the dreaded Terrible Twos. Here are some tips on how to deal with them: Read more…

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How normal is having an imaginary friend?

Very normal. According to studies, between 48% and 65% of children have imaginary friends. They almost always are of the same gender as the child. Read more…

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Are you a mother who tends to smother?

If so, it might be bad for you and your kids. Moms who believe their lives should revolve around their children have lower levels of satisfaction with their own lives. Read more…

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5 top tips for dealing with squabbling siblings

Siblings fight. Whether it’s because of jealousy, personality clashes or just spending so much time together, friction between siblings is almost inevitable. Here are 5 tips for dealing with it: Read more…

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An unborn baby putting its stamp on the world

Babies start to kick in the womb around 16-24 weeks.  They kick more when the mother is relaxing or when she is eating or drinking something with sugar in it. Mom, I want some!

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Looking after young kids is not always a bed of roses

A University of Michigan study asked moms with kids younger than 3-years old  to score the most pleasurable activities of their day.  Read more…

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Alicia Keys was an only child

Alicia is just one example of highly talented only children who have made there mark on the world.

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Stay-at-home-moms often more depressed than working moms

A Gallup survey of 6,000 mothers found that SAHM’s are more likely to have felt depression, sadness, anger and worry than working mothers, The survey found that 41 percent of them felt worry, 26 percent felt sadness, 50 percent felt stress, 19 percent felt anger and 28 percent had been diagnosed with depression. The figures for working moms were lower. Unlike working moms, stay-at-home-moms can be isolated so it’s important they find a network of other moms they can talk to and meet up with.

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Celebrity Angela Preston gives birth to a son

Preston from TV show America’s Next Top Model gave birth to 8lb 7oz Eric Bueno Brown Junior on Aug 26. Her rep told US Magazine: “Right now Angelea is on super mother mode, tending every minute to her beautiful newborn son! She’s ecstatic and cries happy tears because she can’t believe he’s here.” Welcome to the life of the working mom, Angela!

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The stress of being a single mother

Research indicates single mothers experience excessive stress. The stress comes the need to provide financially for the family at the same time as caring for the home in ways traditionally handled by both men and women. Stress can have a direct impact on children, but the studies show it is by no means inevitable, and many single moms still manage to do an amazing job caring for their children.

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Why are you feeling so irritable?

It’s very normal for mothers to get irritated with her children, but it doesn’t mean she’s a bad mom! For mothers, fatigue, combined with constant demands for attention from her kids, can lead to feelings of frustration, irritation and even anger at the child. The important thing is to recognize why she’s feeling that way, to not take it out on her child and find an outlet for what is, after all, very normal feelings.

 

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What’s he smiling at? Newborns can sleep in the strangest positions

New born babies can sleep up to 16 hours a day. Of course that doesn’t mean you’ll get all the sleep you need!

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Birth to 12-years old in 2 mins 45 secs

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Boy, do they grow up quickly! A wonderful stop-motion video showing a child growing up from newborn until she’s 12 years-old. All in the space of less than 3 minutes.

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Mom’s depression can affects their baby’s brain

An article that appeared in yesterday’s Tuscon Weekly shows the impact that a mom’s depression can have on her baby. Read more…

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Mom. Divided (by Susanne Bales Levi)

Read more…

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A little boy asked his mother, “Why are you crying?” “Because I’m a woman,” she told him.

“I don’t understand,” he said. His Mom just hugged him and said, “And you never will.” Read more…

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It’s official! Moms are better multi-taskers

A new study finds that women outpace men in doing more than one task at a time — and they are paying an emotional cost for doing so.  Read more…

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“So going into this Thanksgiving Weekend, my goal is to NOT be busy”.

Great entry from Lisa, mom of 3 about the “busy wars” moms are fighting.:

I can tell you right now, I am busy.  I could list all the zillion things that I do daily.  I could talk about being super tired.  I could tell you that I need to color my hair so desperately that I am actively avoiding mirrors. Read more…

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3rd time’s the charm…

A new entry from Lisa on how her 3rd child influenced her and her family:

It seems like forever ago, but when I was pregnant with my first child, I was excited nervous and worried.  I read books, prepared his room and fretted.  When he was born, I loved him with every fiber of my being.  But he wasn’t a great sleeper.  I was tired, but mostly, I was worried. Read more…

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Sometimes it’s not you. A mother’s feelings of insecurity.

A great guest entry from Annie about self-doubt:

In this world, there are the narcissists, the confident ones, the insecure ones, the blissfully ignorant ones, the genuinely happy ones…and there are ones like me, ever-critical of self. There’s no way I’m arrogant or blissfully ignorant, but I do have moments of confidence, insecurity and genuine happiness, all to varying degrees. Read more…

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My voice is hoarse from yelling at my kids.

An entry from Lisa, mom to three boys:

Shamefully, I admit that I am a yeller.  I yell at my kids.  ALOT.  Read more…

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3 kids under 3.

By guest blogger Nikki:

I’m so thrilled at the response of other mothers looking to come together to form a community of support, especially since motherhood is the most important and difficult thing anyone can do!

Read more…