Tag Archives: Kids

Making the Most Of My Mobile Home

Who knew that with motherhood, I’d also be gaining a mobile home? It’s got a dining area, a great place for the kids to play, nap and nurse, and there’s office space for Hubby and me.

My mobile home is my SUV. I’ve served breakfast, lunch and dinner in my Jeep Commander, changed the poopiest of diapers, napped alongside my children, blinded high school boys in the Kohl’s parking lot with my boobs while breastfeeding in the backseat.

I’ve edited stories, had conference calls, written blog posts, filled out birthday party invitations. The list (obviously) goes on and on.

My husband marvels at all that’s in the car. I’ve got diapers stashed everywhere, along with juice boxes, bottled waters, changes of clothes, a quart of motor oil,

Logan having breakfast in the Jeep this week. Bacon, blueberries and blackberries, yum!

Goldfish, a stroller, blankets, toy cars, trucks, binkies, “emergency” lollipops. (The “emergency” usually being I need Logan to not speak while I’m in the middle of an important phone call.) The most unique item is a small doohickey (the technical term) that if your car was submerged in water, it effortlessly breaks the glass so that you can escape.

Cleaning my SUV is always an adventure, I try to do it each week so that it doesn’t get out of control. I find preschool art projects, receipts, coupons, forgotten half-eaten snacks and half-drunken water bottles.

Why do I have so much in my Jeep? What am I afraid of? Getting stranded in a blizzard? Dust storm? Flash flood? I’m certainly prepared. More like, over-prepared. But at least I’m making the most of my mobile home.

Advertisements

Wordless Wednesday: Choosing the iPad Over iPlay

Logan and a couple of kids from the neighborhood had been running around the front yard and playing reindeer games, until the oldest child decided to bring out her ipad.

Finding a Boo-rific Halloween Costume

“What are you going to be for Halloween?” Remember when we were in school and during this time of year that was the question du jour? I still smile fondly when thinking about my favorite childhood outfit. It was one of the honkers from Sesame Street. Honk, Honk.

Halloween can be such a fun time, especially if you love to dress up like I do. Now that I’m a mom, I love that I get to dress up my kid. For his first Halloween, he was a screaming pumpkin. I say screaming because he didn’t care too much for the outfit. For his second, he was a Bear, which was fitting because his nickname is LoganBear. (Though he still wasn’t wild about the costume.) Last year it was a dinosaur, which we both loved. Now it’s our fourth and he’s got a strong opinion.

I wondered, what is he going to be this year? I worried that the days of me choosing a cutesy outfit for my little guy were over. I wanted to dress him up as a sweet little bumblebee, you know paint his nose black and everything, but he’s got a healthy obsession with Batman and Spiderman, so I figured he’d rather be a superhero.

Last weekend we ventured out to one of those seasonal Halloween stores. It wasn’t until I was about 10 feet from the store’s door that I remembered how these places’ ghoul-factor can be over the top. I quickly warned Logan that there might be scary things inside, but that they were all pretend and nothing could hurt him. Then in taking from “The Blind Side,” I told him if he saw anything he didn’t like, just to close his eyes.

We walked past several zombies, skeletons and other monsters and he seemed unphased. In the kiddie department we saw what I hear are this year’s hottest costumes, Buzz Lightyear, Avatar and Ironman. They also had Spiderman, Batman and the perfect bumblebee outfit.

Nothing really excited him until we saw the firefighter costume. His eyes lit up and I knew, that had to be the one. Of course they didn’t have his size, so we bought the hat and I vowed to find him the full costume at another store.

Upon walking out, some Logan-sized goblin contraption jumped out at him (who at the store thought that’d be a good idea?) and he buried his face in my leg and just said” “Mom!” I scooped him up, his face planted in my neck and we left unharmed.

To my relief, the next two stores were much more child-friendly and we finally got the fireman costume. In fact after trying it on, he refused to take it off, which was fine, we wore it for the rest of the afternoon.

Even though it wasn’t a bumblebee, I figured who cares? He’s happy and that’s what makes me happy.

What Makes Me a Better Mom? No Kids and No Hubby

After my whirlwind weekend away with the girls, I noticed I was basquing in an afterglow of sorts. When my toddler dove into shrill screams of protest, I shrugged it off and kept going. When hubby forgot to take out the trash, again, I sighed. Well, he’ll just have to do it later.

Wait. Who is this patient person?

I noticed she shows up like clockwork right after I get a break from my husband and my kid and get to be me, not the cleaning-cooking-nose-and-butt-wiping-attentive-partner me. But just me.

This past week I’ve brought more order to my house, crossing items off my to-do list that have been there since January. I’ve been able to listen better to the trials and tribulations of my husband’s job and my little guy’s tantrums seem less intense and more amusing. I even made Mickey Mouse-shaped, whole wheat pancakes on Saturday, which *totally* isn’t me. (It was bad. M&Ms were the eyes and nose, and I carved a strawberry into a smile.)

I believe I do a really good job of carving out “me” time. Out of all my mommiefriends I feel I do that the most and I think I’m much better for it. It can be hard to take time away, you feel guilty for not wanting to be with the loves of your life, but you have to remember, you are a love of of your life too and you must nurture that.

Plus your partner appreciates you more when he’s walked a bit in your shoes and your kids are sweeter (even if it’s short-lived) because they’ve missed you.

All mommies know this, we just need to force ourselves to make it a priority. It’s easy to lose who you are in the day-to-day grind of life, but taking time out to do whatever you want without your kid and your soulmate is an essential touchstone. It makes me a better mommy and wife because it keeps me happy.

Eating My Words … (Again)

I sent my kid to daycare today with flashing shoes and a black Thomas the Tank Engine T-shirt. I’ve become that parent. The following is Case No. 849 of me eating my words:

Before Logan, I’d see kids in stores and on the streets covered in over-the-top animations of cars, trucks, fairies, princesses, Care Bears, Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and every other Disney character imaginable. I’d make a judgmental mental note, when I have kids, they’re not going to look like an advert for the Cartoon Network.

Some of these kids also had shoes with blinking lights, bells and horns. Horns!!!! But mine wouldn’t.

This week we go shoe shopping and unfortunately not the kind of shoe shopping that used to culminate in boxes of edgy stilts and flirty wedges. It’s shoe shopping at JCPenney in the “family section.” I go there for shoes for the little guy because you get good brands for very little cost. We mostly do Stride Rite, but I don’t like Stride Rite prices. Plus if your kid suffers a meltdown, no worries, you’re surrounded by sympathetic moms.

So I’m there, checking out the selection and Logan spots these black gawd-awful shoes with plastic red cars. “I want THAT ONE!” I tried to make snazzy gray Sketchers seem cool, but they were no match for the red car shoes that blinked red. I caved. I bought them, and he couldn’t have been happier hopping out of the store with strobing shoes.

The shirt was also a recent purchase and I saw it, knew he’d love it and told myself it wasn’t as horrible because the shirt was black. (The lies we tell ourselves! It’s actually very, very ugly)

But that’s the way it is. You think you’ll be one kind of parent and your kid teaches you that you’re another. And it’s all perfectly fine because they’re the greatest, hardest lessons you’ll learn.

An iTouch for a Toddler? ARE YOU CRAZY?!?!?!?

That’s what I said to my husband when he told me he wanted to get Logan an iTouch for his 3rd birthday. I repeat THIRD birthday.

Hubby and I are gadget geeks and we ooo and ahhhh over the latest iPods,iPhones, iTouch, iPads and iWonderWhatThey’llThinkOfNexts. And I believe we try to be somewhat sensible when it comes to getting stuff for Logan.

Which is why when hubby asked me if I thought we could get Logan an iTouch I was shocked. A 3-year-old? Really? What’s the point? There’s educational apps, he tells me. What’s wrong with books? (I has a half-a-second from pulling out the ol’ “Back in my day….”) I began to suspect we’re going to buy this iTouch “for Logan,” but it’ll really be for hubby. But he insists, nope, it’s for the half-pint.

So, a $300 toy for a 3 year old? Not sure I can get over that. I mean, I can still hear the sound of his portable DVD player bouncing down the stairs when he chucked it mid-tantrum. (Surprisingly, it survived the nearly fatal fall.)

A few days later, I asked a woman who’s been an educator for years what she thinks of these devices for little ones. To my surprise she says it’s great. In fact she just got back from a conference in Chicago where the iPad was being touted as a wonderful education tool, especially for special needs kids. They’re already in some schools. You can do speech therapy, cover your ABCs and 123s, colors, animals and sounds. Apparently its bright colors and sleek design are ideal for capturing kids’ attention and as far as the iTouch, they’re perfectly sized for little hands. Though she recommended the  youngest of the iGeneration be 5 years old.

Who knew? Even though it’s been almost three years, I’m still adjusting to looking through the world with parental lenses.

iPods, iPads, iTouch for kids… iDon’tKnow, but maybe my hubby isn’t as crazy as I thought. What would you do?