Archive for February, 2011

Feb 28 Monday

Queen of Hearts

Before we begin: The following comments were made in a light hearted manner, tongue-in-cheek. They are in no way meant to offend anyone and were made out of ear shot of kiddos. Our society is funny. It’s OK to laugh once in awhile at ourselves.

And go…

The kids and I were belly up to the kitchen table playing a good old fashioned game of Slap Jack.

As I turned a card and set it upon the stack, Maddy SLAPPED it as hard as she could.

Only it wasn’t a Jack. It was a Queen.

Me: “Cooper wins! You can’t slap a Queen!”

SuperHub: (Passing through the room behind me, under his breath) “No you can’t, slapping a Queen is a hate crime.”


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Feb 24 Thursday

I have learned…

I have confessed my imperfections before. Stood on my soap box and shouted the parental commandments. Given men a cheat sheet.

And since I find it cathartic to share lessons, here you go.

I have learned…

If your child loses control of their bladder, for the first time in two years, naturally it will be in the 3rd row of your friend’s Escalade.

Writing sexy messages to your SuperHub, in bathtub crayon, all over his shower, is a great idea. Until you realize (just before a new buyer walk through) that while the red wax comes off, the words do not. Related: I have learned to embrace bleach and all it’s magical qualities.

Selling a house, that contains three young kiddos, is tricky at best. Note: We still sold! But I might take a year to recover.

It will always sound dirty when you ask someone “Is your switch still hot to the touch?” And it will always make me giggle like a 12 year old boy.

It’s perfectly acceptable to spend your Saturday nights researching appliances, window coverings and methods for removing urine from car seats, online.

My friends are better cooks that I am. WAY better.

Dr. Teal’s lavender scented Epsom salt solution is the greatest thing since boxed macaroni and cheese.

If you spend $15.99 a pound for fancy cheeses to nibble on with wine, keep them out of reach of your kids. And your dog.

It’s entirely possible to scrub a bathroom, top to bottom, while doing a phone interview.

If you have to ask “Is that a poop on the floor?” Chances are good that it probably is.

Counseling is bee’s knees.

Going three whole days without logging into Facebook is not only possible, it’s encouraged.

Too much coffee is not always a bad thing.

It will always drive me nuts that Fergie spells tasty wrong in Fergalicious. T to the A, to the S-T-E-Y, Girl you tasty.

There are some things that are worth the extra money: Good babysitters, heated blankets and direct flights.

Philly Cheesesteak pizza. That is all.

I know how to sweat leeks, remove laundry stains and clear up a nasty diaper rash. But I don’t know much about Greek Mythology, geography or power tools. And I am perfectly fine with that.

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Feb 10 Thursday

You’re the apple of my eye

I am that mom. You know the one. She signs up to bring treats to the Valentine’s Day party at school, then shows up with cheddar cheese slices cut into heart shapes with a cookie cutter.

It’s an issue, I realize this.

My bestie, Tho, thinks I am a fun sponge. She might be right. But this fun sponge knows what a sugar crash can do to an afternoon.

Yo.

When I saw these DELICIOUS downloadable stickers on Twig & Thistle, I was smitten.

Kathleen, the owner of Twig & Thistle, is on to something. Click here to download the .pdf file for free. Then print, cut and stick onto your favorite corresponding fruit.

Note to You: I emailed the file to a local print shop who printed them, in color, on sticker paper. Then I used a 1” round paper punch to cut out each circle and stuck them on the goods.

Maybe, just maybe, the kids at your Valentine’s Day party will go bananas for this idea too. Surely, they will take it home (let’s be real, a peach competing with a cupcake?) and their mom or dad will fall head over heels in love.

And have a snack all their own. Doesn’t that sound aPEELing?

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Feb 09 Wednesday

S(NO)w Ice Ice Baby

My friend Janan is a genius. And makes the world’s best Special K Bars, but I digress.

Last night, I hosted an intimate gathering that required beverages. I stocked my favorite beverage pail with an assortment of sodas and an hour before the guests arrived, I realized my ice maker was OFF. Doooood.

Upon arriving,  Miss Janan promptly solved the problem.

Snow!

She scooped up a sampling of clean snow and packed it around the sodas.

The result was a super cute, season appropriate display that did the trick of keeping things chilly.

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Feb 06 Sunday

My Silly Little Valentines…Take Two!

Love is in the air.

And littering the aisles of most retailers. It’s the time of year when pink, red and all things that sparkle are sold en masse, to assist us in professing our adoration for that special someone in our lives.

By the second week in February, most New Year’s resolutions have gone the way of the dodo and if you’re like me, you can curl up on the couch solo, with a box of chocolates and grunt your way through a couple hours of DVR’d trashy TV.

Please do not disturb.

It also means it’s Valentine’s Day party time at school. Foil covered shoe boxes, stale conversation hearts and the cherished exchange of little paper expressions of sentiment.

It’s simply sweet.

Last year, we used Sparkbooth Photo Booth Software to make these kitschy little cards for our school exchange.

(Click here to see.)

This year, we did the same.

Sparkbooth is brilliant. BRILL-I-ANT. Upon download, it instantly transforms your computer into a photo booth. You can’t help but be giddy as the countdown begins. The possibilities are endless: Birthday party favors, weddings, office gatherings. Set up a laptop and allow your guests to capture themselves at their leisure. Doooood.

I love it so much, yes, I would marry it. Thank you for asking.

And I want you to love it too. So you have to have it!

So go on. Click here. For the next 24 hours, you get to download the full Sparkbooth Home software for FREE. MWAH!

Note to You: After this offer expires, you can still download your 10 day free trial. But if you’re smart, you will go download the total home package now. Just sayin’.

Again this year, we carved out an hour of time, got ourselves fancy and took an insane amount of photos. Then I opened the file in MS Paint and copy and pasted our way the perfect little greetings. I uploaded them, printed them and over the next few days the kids will sign each one. (Actual cards have more blank space.)

Cost: $ .15 per card

I am a wee bit biased but how can one resist a 5 year old adorned in an assortment of bows, beads and a random Polly Pocket sticker from the doctor’s office? Oh yes, and a 6 year old who is made of PURE SUGAR (and gas) proudly displaying words he colored on his own. For nearly an hour. Using an entire Sharpie worth of ink.

Yes, I have a 3rd child. No, she is not forgotten. But getting the 2 and under crowd to cooperate this particular day was not happening.

Not even with jelly bean bribery.

Enter CardMe Kelly on etsy to save the day! (Kelly is yet another reason to obsess over etsy, ridiculously cute designs for every occasion, on a budget.)

I emailed Kelly a snapshot of my three kiddos from happier days and VOILA! She created not one, but TWO, designs so sweet, they gave me a toothache. Seriously.

The file Kelly creates is yours to keep. You can upload to Facebook. Print. Email. Whatever your little heart desires. And has time for.

Within minutes of receiving my files, I had the images uploaded to print (1 hour processing means mama doesn’t need to feel guilty about procrastinating) and we have a Valentine that our family and friends will nuts over.

Love.

Cost: Less than $10 (Psssst…If you send electronically, your valentines are eco friendly!)

Now you can have Valentine’s Day cards as unique as the ones you love. In less time than it takes you to watch a trashy housewives show on Bravo.

And eat that entire box of chocolates.

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Feb 01 Tuesday

Itty Tidbits of Wisdom

There are new many new mamas and mamas-to-be in my life. To them, I dedicate this post. Read it, pass it along or ignore it, there is no judgment here. Parenting is the toughest and most rewarding task you will ever take on. I write this from a place of love and understanding that everyone sees things differently.

This is my compilation of advice but goodness know, it’s only my opinion and I have a lot to learn. Don’t we all.

Peas, carrots & patience,
kt

Babies might not have teeth, but nursing one can feel like you are allowing a baby wolf to gnaw on your Reginald Von Hoobie Doobies. It gets better. MUCH better. But, if you don’t want to be sole nutrition supplier to your offspring, THAT IS PERFECTLY OK. Formula is there for a reason. And if anyone has an opinion otherwise, tell them (ever so kindly) that you don’t tell them what to do with their body fluids, so you would prefer to make your own choices regarding yours.

You can never have too many blankets, onesies and burp clothes.

Invest in a touch lamp with a 3 way bulb. Dim lights make 4 am diaper updates and feedings, a little easier to get through. And sleep through.

Velor jumpsuits are perfectly acceptable as evening wear.

Contrary to what your grandma will tell you, when your baby is new, you can never hold them too much. Babies grow with love and touch.

Yes, it’s OK to ask people not to touch your baby. Or to wash their hands before holding him or her. You can never be too careful.

By the time your baby is three months old, the sleep situation is a habit for you. By four months old, it’s habit for your baby. Naps in the crib early make for easier transitions for everyone.

If you have a c-section: Hold a pillow on your stomach anytime you move: Sitting up, sitting down, rolling over and coughing. Allow yourself to take your pain medication without guilt. It helps you to heal when you aren’t being exhausted by pain.

If you birthed traditionally, soak your bottom as often as you can. Sit in the tub and read, talk on the phone or nurse your baby.

Swaddle tight.

The quickest way to buy a ticket to stay up all night with a screaming baby, is to tell everyone what a great sleeper they are. Most babies sleep well for a spell. Then their central nervous systems go haywire and you go into survival mode. Thought to keep you sane: Even at 2 am, there are millions of parents, all over the world, doing the exact same thing you are. It’s temporary and you’re not alone.

Use those little jersey knit hats after bath-time to keep your babe warm while you slather him up in lotion.

When the liquid yellow (magically projectile) poop reaches within 1 inch of the back waistband of the the diaper, go up a size.

Per my sister’s pediatrician, and my parenting guru, Dr. R, “Consistency, consistency, consistency. It’s the toughest but most important aspect of parenting.”

Name brand diapers aren’t always better. In the beginning, it’s like your baby is pooping on dollar bills. You can always mix things up, store brand diapers for days, name brand diapers at night.

The best way to wake your baby is to change his britches. Or sneeze.

Yes, you will someday be able to fathom sex with your partner again. Whether it’s 6 weeks or 6 months later, wine helps.

Sleepers with zippers will become essential. It’s nearly impossible to match snaps by the light of day, but in a dimly lit room at night, it’s Super Human.

Judging another parent (or child) almost guarantees karma will find you. My child will NEVER bite, hit, scream in public, poop up their back, etc.

Silly Bandz are great to wear if you’re breastfeeding. Switch from wrist to wrist, at each feeding, so you know what side you stated on first the last time. They’re waterproof and won’t break. And if company shows up on your doorstep, you can use it to throw your hair into a pony tail.

The best breast pads (if you need them, you know what I am talking about) are ones that are breathable (no plastic on the back) and super absorbent. Change them often, whether you think you need to or not.

Learn to smile like you’re really listening to the advice being spewed at you in the middle of the grocery store, nod your head and say “Ok, great, thank you!” as you walk away.

Only you and your family know what is best for your situation. Don’t let anyone make you feel guilty. This goes for mothers, mothers-in-law and friends. Well intending people can overstep boundaries. And will. You can’t change that but you can change the way you choose to react.

As much as you want to give away your old favorite jeans because you think they will never fit again, DO NOT. They will. Grab a storage bin and give yourself some time.

Your friend, who talks about how she only gained 6 lbs during pregnancy is either lying or suffering from health problems. Or sadistic.

Resign control. Your partner is willing and able to help. And chances are they are pretty good at everything it takes to care for your baby. Yes, he might occasionally do something different than you would, but different isn’t wrong.  KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT. Take a step back. In 6 months, when he is pulling half the parent-load, you will be grateful you did.

A mattress protector is a great idea, for YOUR bed. Post baby night sweats get rid of excess fluids and surprise you with that “just got out of a pool” feeling in the wee hours of the morning. It’s OK to wake your partner up to make them feel the water running from the back of your knees, it’s all part of the experience.

It’s suddenly realistic to expect people to not call your house phone from 8-10 am, 1-3 pm, 5-7 pm and after 9 pm because you and/or your baby is sleeping. The nerve!

If you think your baby is sick, don’t ask google. Call a friend or your pediatrician.

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