New Year’s Resolutions: How to Set the Bar Low

New Year’s Resolutions: How to Set the Bar Low

New Year’s resolutions are kind of like your forays into scrapbooking: sounds like a good idea at the time, but then you become overwhelmed and you have to tell your husband you just spent $100 at Michael’s for no reason. (Without the Michael’s part.) Why not steer clear of the lofty goals that never seem to work out, and pick some of these more attainable mom-oriented goals instead? 1. Limit phone time … … unless the kids are really being annoying. Focusing on your kids is great, unless they are behaving like something out of The Exorcist. You know what they always say, better to appear disengaged than to scream your head off. (Well, nobody says that, but they should.) 2. Get more sleep … … once your baby is a toddler. Because any new mom knows that “sleep when the baby sleeps” is a fictional, delusional saying, kind of like “when you breastfeed, the weight just falls off!” 3. Make romance a priority … … if your husband helps with chores. When you’re the one making dinner, cleaning up, bathing the kids, and putting them to bed, you can’t be blamed for feeling a little bit unromantic. However, if he gets up with the baby and cleans the toilets, then hello, sailor. 4. Cook more vegetables for your kids … … but don’t stress if they don’t eat them. You know what, nobody ever died from eating chicken nuggets and Goldfish but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t model healthy eating habits. Like, say, a dinner comprised of leftover Chinese, wine, and baby carrots. 5. Get rid of any...
For The Days When You Feel Insecure, Dear Daughter

For The Days When You Feel Insecure, Dear Daughter

Dear Daughter, I hope that I never have to give you this letter. I hope that I can teach you the value of self-acceptance before your insecurities pile up brick by brick. I hope that you have it in your heart to always look for beauty in everything and everyone, most especially in yourself. I hope that no boy will ever make you want to lose 20 pounds, and that no salesperson will ever make you believe that you need cosmetics to be beautiful. I hope that I never have to hear you say, “I’m too fat” or “I’m too ugly.” I hope that criticizing yourself does not become a daily habit. This is your 28-year-old mama talking to you. It’s just seven months after your birth, and I am in the processs of fixing my relationship with my post-baby body. In theory—in my head—I know that I still look OK. I keep telling myself that my body is beautiful because I carried you for nine months and I’ve been breastfeeding you since birth. But every time I look in the mirror, I feel defeated. And on really bad days, I feel destroyed. You see, I’ve always been somewhat insecure about how I look. But before I got pregnant, I had the luxury of band-aid solutions. I’d crash diet when I was bloated. I’d visit a salon when I felt like my look had become boring. A quick-fix was always available. But pregnancy has a way of exposing flaws. No outfit could hide a 15 ( 20? 25?) pound weight gain. No cream could erase angry-red stretch marks. To be honest,...
Confessions Of A Messy Mom

Confessions Of A Messy Mom

Messy Moms, put that broom down. Stop telling yourself you are going to be more organized. We both know that is a lie that leaves you defeated, eating pie over the kitchen sink. So what if company is coming over in 20 minutes? Don’t apologize for your house being messy—we are moms who can’t be bothered with household chores. My family was over at our friend’s house for dinner. Our friend says, “Sorry, our house is a mess. We just got back from out of town.” My reply, “Wow, if you think this is messy, you should see my house.” Our friend’s definition of messy is a small pile of unopened mail on the counter and a pair of shoes by the front door. My husband and I are both messy—borderline dirty. Okay, it’s a freaking dirty, messy, disaster. Having a child has only made it worse. Just last week, I “deep-cleaned” the whole place and thought, “I will never let it get that crazy again. From now on, I will pick up at the end of every damn day, and clean as I go.” One week later, here we are again. I’m stepping over toys to microwave my coffee for the third time this morning. I’m writing to avoid the inevitable—bringing our home back to a livable condition. When I do get our home back to meeting our lowly standards, I will thoroughly enjoy the five minutes of having almost everything in its place. I’m a stay-at-mom, which should make it easier, right? Well, no. We are at home, actually using our home, making lots of messes. My toddler enjoys...

5 Things This Natural Birth Mama Wants You to Know

I love this guest post from Melissa – she got the kind of birth she was hoping for but knows that there’s no easy exit. Upon learning I was pregnant, after the initial shock of the two blue lines and then romanticizing about the idea that I was becoming a parent with my husband, I had only one thought: oh, my God. Now I have to give birth. I was 100% terrified and spent the first three months of pregnancy in serious denial about the fact that a bowling ball was going to descend through my nether regions and blow it to smithereens in a few short months. But I hoped for a natural birth and had a natural birth, despite however fearful I was. Now that I’m on the other side of that whole bowling-ball-came-out-of-me business, there are some points I really want people to know. #1. I worked toward my natural birth, not wished. I didn’t just wake up one day and say, yes, I’d love to try to make it through childbirth – one of the hardest things ever – with zero plan in place. Let’s just hope for it and go for it! To me, that’s like signing up for a marathon, not training, and showing up on race day just hoping you make it to the finish line. Instead, I prepared. I bought a $200 Hypnobabies home self-study off Amazon, where I listened to self-hypnosis CD’s for 30-60 minutes a day for THREE solid months of my life. It sounds crazy, but I credit my natural childbirth completely to Hypnobabies and luck (see below). It...
5 Reasons Married Life Is Different Than Living Together

5 Reasons Married Life Is Different Than Living Together

My husband and I lived together for about 18 months before we tied the knot. You can call it cohabitation, a warmup, pre-gaming, or even living in sin, but no matter what name you put on it, things change when you become Mr. and Mrs. Marriage is different than being two people who share the same bed and the same address. Cohabitating couples may say stuff like “a piece of paper isn’t going to change our relationship,” but I’m here to tell you: things do change. Here are five reasons (that have nothing to do with kids — parenthood is a whole different story) why married life is different than living together … 1. You’re really family now There’s a difference between your boyfriend’s relatives and your in-laws. The difference may not rear its head right away, but marriage brings a sense of permanence and obligation when it comes to family; love her or not, your boyfriend’s mom and your mother-in-law are not the same woman. There’s a responsibility that comes with absorbing family problems, especially as parents age. And yes, there may also be joy in expanding your family circle, but the permanence adds another layer of complexity … no matter how crazy you are about your in-laws (or how crazy your in-laws are, you choose). 2. The gross-out factor no longer exists When we were just living together, my now-husband and I made an attempt to keep our less-than-sexy bathroom habits under wraps, or at least to be discreet about them. The announcement of “I might be in here for a while” might’ve meant I was clipping my toenails and plucking stray...