Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Confessions of a Real-life Mommy

It is time you knew the truth.  Every mommy out there has secrets – secrets that they don’t want anyone to know because they are scared of being judged.  There is so much judgement on moms these days – if you don’t breastfeed, eat organic, get your kids vaccinated, introduce foods at the ‘right’ times, or banish all soothers from your house by the time your kid turns one, everyone from the clerk at the grocery store to the grumpy guy at the doctor’s office will judge you for it.  Yet no mom is perfect, and no two moms are alike.  Each mom has to find their own way to navigate through the reams of advice, rules, schedules, and research that gets thrown in their face every day. 
Being the Type A personality that I am, when I got pregnant with my first child I vowed to do everything perfectly.  I bought all the books (and actually read them – what I wouldn’t give for that kind of time now!), visited every website, watched every T.V. show and basically bugged the crap out of everyone I knew with my baby-know-it-all obsession.  I knew that breast was best and considered it a crime that my mother had bottle fed me.  I knew not to let the baby sleep in our bed, I knew to make sure the baby learned to fall asleep on his own, and that, when the time came, I should make all my own baby food.   
My perfect mommy performance lasted all of two weeks.  In that time I learned that although ‘they’ say I should do things a certain way, circumstances change and one person’s way of doing things cannot and does not work for everyone.  And remember all that crap I listed above that I had learned in my quest to be a perfect mommy?  I broke every one of those damn rules.  Nobody died.  I wasn’t arrested.  The earth didn’t open up and swallow me whole.  I did get a few zits from stress, but they cleared up eventually.
That being said, I think it is time for us moms to stand up, band together and let each other, and everyone else, know that no mom is truly perfect.  We each try our best, and that is all that should be expected.  When it comes to raising our kids, we’ve all done things that we know we shouldn’t have.  As long as you are not abusing your child or ignoring their needs in any way, you have a right to raise your child how you see fit.  It shouldn’t send us running for the Clearasil every time we dare to disagree with Supernanny. 
If we all admitted that we are not perfect, but are instead ‘real-life’ moms, I know I for one would save a lot of money on wine.  So to get us started, here are my confessions – the things I do that I know I shouldn’t, but am damn well going to do anyway.
1.  When it is nice out I make Simba eat on the deck.  Don’t give me that look - our kitchen table is right next to our patio doors so he is only two feet from where the rest of us are eating and the door stays open the whole time.   And I have a very good reason for doing this; if you remember the food fight scene in Hook you will know what a room looks like after Simba is done eating in it.  So to save me from scrubbing the floors, and the walls, and the ceiling – you get the picture – after every meal, we let him eat on the deck.  We get to eat in peace without screaming at Simba for making a mess, he gets to express himself artistically with his food, and the birds get fed. Everybody wins. 
2.  I use my kids to do things I wouldn’t be able to as an adult.  For example, play in the water at the splash pad.  If I didn’t have kids people would think I was crazy for playing at the splash pad.  But if I drag my kids along and make it look like they were the ones who wanted to go, it is totally kosher for me to play in it. So if you see someone at the water park playing gleefully in the water with a screaming child who obviously does not want to be there, it might be me.   
3.  Finally, I admit to the evil of all mommy-evils – plunking my kid in front of the television so I can get a 30 minute break.  Yes, sometimes I spend this time making dinner or doing something else productive, but often I just curl up with him on the couch and take a nap.  But this is really Princes’ fault – he purposely stopped napping so that I would be forced to placate him with his favourite show just so I can regain enough sanity to get through the rest of the day without unconsciously humming ‘If you’re happy and you know it’ in a very creepy sort of way. 
While there are many more things I do ‘wrong,’ it is getting late, I am already embarrassed enough for one post, and if I wrote out all my confessions we could be here a while.  I hope this post made you all feel a bit better about the crap you pull with your kids, because right now I just feel stupid for airing my dirty laundry on the internet.   You’d think I’d be used to it by now, eh?

Friday, 24 June 2011

Wendy's Guide to Park Etiquette

When did going to the park get so complicated?  Oh yeah, that’s right, when I became a parent.   Since then, I have learned that, although they may not be posted, each park has its own unwritten rules that, if broken, will result in a combination of death-stares and loudly whispered remarks about your competence or lack thereof.   
While in the past I must admit that I have handed out my share of death-stares, ever since we moved to the big city I find myself on the receiving end more often than not.  This is not totally my fault; you have to remember that, not only am I still adjusting to the fact that I have two children to chase around the park at the same time, but I am also new to the area, and apparently this province has its own special park procedures that I was completely ignorant of.
Sure, all the regular park misdemeanours will get you in trouble – if your kids are throwing rocks,  not taking turns,  pushing or hitting, you better make sure to avert your eyes because the death-stares will be coming your way.  But I keep forgetting that we done moved to the big city now, and they got themselves some fancy-dancy parks ‘round here.  I reckon us country folk has to do us some book learnin’ ‘fore we even be able to get on the swing set. 
All joking and bad accents aside, I have never in my life seen parks as complicated as I have since we moved here.  They have swings that look like they will launch you into outer space, and about half of the parks have their own ‘splash pad.’  This basically means that the park has its own fancy sprinkler system to keep the kids cool in the summer.  However, these splash pads are active all summer; meaning that on a cool day your kids can still turn on the water if they so choose or if you so let them.  This is what got me in trouble.
The first few times we went to the splash pads everything went great; Prince especially loved pushing the buttons to turn on all the water.  The trouble came when we went on a cloudy day and Prince still wanted to go push the buttons.  Being the hillbilly that I am, I did not see a problem with this.   At least not until Prince turned on the water and all the other kids at the park were inexplicably drawn to the wetness, despite the fact that they were bundled up like tiny snowmen.  This of course resulted in dozens of moms, nannies, grandmas and babysitters running frantically after their wards screaming “Nooooooooo!” as if they were auditioning for a Wes Craven movie.  Needless to say I have now been banned from that park.
Since I have so much time on my hands now that I can’t go to the park anymore, I thought I would do all you other moms out there a favour and write up all the unwritten park rules.  Here is what I have so far, and if I missed anything, please let me know so that I don’t get banned from another park – there are only so many within driving distance you know.   So here goes:
Wendy’s Guide to Park Etiquette:
~I know that it hurts when you bang your head on that stupid bar that they put across the top of slides and monkey bars, but please try to refrain from repeating all the colourful names you know of for the idiot who decided to put it there.  Remember, if you don’t want your kid (or someone else’s) to repeat what you say to your mother-in-law, it isn’t proper language for the park.
~If you are lucky enough to have a child old enough that you don’t have to follow them around the park, take pity on the moms who don’t get to sit down and teach your child that younger kids need more time to do things than an older child, so older kids need to be patient and gentle with them.  Kind of like how wives have to treat their husbands.
~While it can be hard to keep the mama lioness at bay when your child is being mistreated, no one wants to have someone else discipline their child.  If you see a child doing wrong, find the appropriate parent and let them handle the discipline.  Don’t worry; you will have lots of chances to practise your discipline skills on your own child in the future.
~Speaking of discipline, have a plan.  You and your child need to know what will happen if they misbehave before you go to the park.  Whether you use time outs, bribes, loss of privileges or threats, I won’t judge, just please use something.  Be the Smokey the Bear of the Playground: Remember, only you can prevent AWKWARDNESS.
~ The last thing you want to do when you are at the park is worry about cleaning.  No, scratch that, the last thing you want to do at the park is step in someone else’s mushy banana.  So maybe cleaning up a bit is not such a bad idea.
~Remember the Golden Park Rule:  let your kids do only what you want other kids to do.  Kids are copycats – if they see someone doing something and not getting in trouble for it they will want to do it too.   So if you don’t want someone climbing up the slide when your kid wants to go down it, don’t let your kid climb up slides.  ‘nogh said.
~Be friendly!  The best part of going to the park is meeting other moms.  Whether you are Miss Popularity or Miss Homebody Hermit, say hello, talk about the weather or comment on the latest Hollywood fiasco.  For SAHM's in particular, this may be the only rational adult conversation they get in a day, so throw them a bone and be nice.   Besides, when you are nice to the other mommies before your kid has a temper tantrum over taking turns on the slide, it is a hell of a lot harder for them to give you the death-stare.
~Always bring bandaids and snacks.  They most likely will be required to calm down and tape back together your child or the children they have injured.
(The following is meant to be sung to the tune of the Beverly Hillbillies Theme Song)
‘Thanks for listenin’ to this story bout Wendy and her kids, a poor country girl who don’t got much in her head.  I hope that now you will have fun at the park and avoid the death-stares and the unfriendly remarks.

Sunday, 19 June 2011

Father's Day Special - Free Beer!

Now that we have the attention of all the men out there, we’d like to welcome you to a special father’s day edition of Escape from Mommyland.   While we will not be giving out free beer (like our bank was this weekend) in honour of all you fertile fellas, we hope that you will read this post anyway. 
To make up for all the years of ties and homemade ashtrays, this year, as our gift to you, we will reveal confidential tricks of the mommy-trade that will help you get out of the dog house and into a box of a different kind, if you catch my drift.   While many of the tips we have are about making small changes, we will again reiterate that size does not matter, and often it is the smallest things that make the biggest impact.  So grab a pen, take some notes, and tell your friends, because this stuff is golden.
1.  Don’t complain to us about changing diapers – or anything else that, as the mother of your kid(s) we do 15 times every day without so much as a thank you.   When you come to us bragging or moaning (it doesn’t matter which) about having changed one poopy diaper like you are the best thing since KY and deserve a freaking medal, you are just making us want to whoop you upside the head with the next poopy diaper that comes along. 
Unless you give us a medal (or something else appropriately shiny) every time we do the same chore, we are not going to make a big deal over you doing it.  Imagine that we came to you bragging that we went pee standing up.  After you made sure we hadn’t grown a penis, wouldn’t your gut reaction be “So what?  I do that every day”?  So although it may be a big deal for you to have emptied a potty, done the laundry or let a child spit half-chewed food into your hand, by making a big deal about it you are just rubbing it in our face that we get no acknowledgement for doing the same thing.  And even if your baby’s mama is as sweet as sugar when you tell her your ‘accomplishment’, deep down she is planning what to do that night in the time when you would have been getting busy.
2.  Do something with the kids by yourself once a week.  This is especially true if your baby’s mama is a SAHM.  Not only is this great advice anyway because it will give you special time to bond with your kid(s), it will also give mama a chance to regain some of the sanity that she has lost during the course of the week.  There are a few ground rules that you have to know for this to work though – whatever activity you decide to do with the kids should require you all to be out of the house for at least 2 hours, and you should not leave the house in a disgusting mess when you leave.  And if you really want to get some bang for your buck, bring mom a treat when you come home (chocolate, coffee, flowers, whatever the mom in question prefers).   Just don’t forget tip #1 – do not come home from said outing and complain to her about how hard it was to handle the kids by yourself.  Work with me people.
3.  Do stuff (i.e. chores) without being asked.   When your baby’s mama wakes up to the attack of the fruit flies because you forgot to take out the garbage the night before she is not going to be happy.  And if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.  I know it can be frustrating to be nagged about doing chores, so why not do yourself and everybody else a favour and pre-empt the nagging by completing the chore before being asked to?  When you do this it make us mom’s really happy because it shows that you respect our needs and, by extension, you respect us.   And respect is damn sexy.
4.  Listen.  Again, easy in theory.  But let me fill you in on a little secret.  If you are on the computer, are watching t.v., texting, holding a newspaper or staring at her boobs you are NOT listening.  Sure, you may think you are listening, but part of your mind is just waiting for her to shut-up so that you can get back to what you were doing before.    Put everything down, shut off all electronic devices, make eye contact, nod and make appropriate noises (no, passage of gas, in any form, is NOT considered appropriate – ‘mmm-hmms’ and ‘ah-has’ only please).  Who knows, you may actually learn something – and get a chance to touch those things you were staring at earlier. 
5.  Make time to be alone with each other – in a non-sexual way.  When you have kids it is easy to lose touch as a couple.  It is really hard to make time to just hang out and have fun.  If you don’t make time for a ‘date night’ or whatever you want to call it, when you do get two seconds alone there is a lot of pressure to ‘do it,’ and pressure is sooo not sexy.  But by spending quality time together doing other things it increases intimacy, which is very sexy.   Yes, I know it sounds crazy but by spending time not having sex you will end up having more sex.   Seriously. 
To all the men who have read this, thank you, and you’re welcome in advance.  To all the women who have read this, sorry for all the sexual innuendos; we were writing for a different audience today and we had to keep their attention somehow.  And finally, just so I don’t get a thousand emails asking what bank I use, they were giving out beer of the root variety, which nonetheless impressed my husband. 
Happy Father’s Day!

-Wendy & Alice

Friday, 17 June 2011

My Best Friends' Weddings

Dum-Dum-da-Dum.  That’s right, wedding season is here and this year I am smack dab in the middle of it, which is kind of weird considering I am already married.  So why do I find myself dress shopping, scouting venues and constantly browsing through the wedding aisle at Michaels? Because my three – that’s right, three (3) - closest friends are all getting married within the next year. 
First up is Dory, whose wedding is just a few months away and I have yet to get my bridesmaid dress altered for.  Next, our very own Alice will say “I do” a few weeks later.  And finally, my bestest-ever friend Bridget’s nuptials will take place next spring with yours truly as MOH (for all you wedding virgins, that stands for Maid of Honor).  Hopefully you can understand why, with all this wedding overload, I have taken to roaming about the house in my wedding dress.
While some people would find this a bit much, I am actually revelling in it.  It turns out that helping others plan their wedding can be even more fun that planning your own.  I get all the fun of planning without any of the stress or expense.  It’s the best of both worlds.  And I have to say that being in a bridal party is not as bad as it is often portrayed to be in movies.  I have gone dress shopping quite a few times now and not once has anyone had a crap in the sink (sorry for the spoiler if you have not yet seen Bridesmaids).   Yes, there have been some bridezilla moments, but I think all brides should get a free pass on at least a couple of those; committing to have sex with just one person for the rest of your life would make anyone a little cranky.
So to Dory, Alice, Bridget and all the other brides-to-be out there, I want to take this opportunity to offer the following advice from one who has been there and done that:
1.  Enjoy every minute:   You only get married once (hopefully) so enjoy every bit of the process.  I know it can be stressful trying to coordinate flowers and bridesmaids dress colors, and you have every right to feel frustrated when the venue you want is already booked.  But on the day, even if your dress rips while giving out hugs in the receiving line (like mine did), I assure you it won’t matter because the act of committing yourself to the one you love will make the day perfect, whether you are wearing a paper bag or a Vera Wang. 
I have one friend who was so stressed out about her wedding that she actually began losing her hair – literally.  She actually developed a bald spot, which as you can imagine, did not help her stress level any.  After visiting the doctor and learning that she was unlikely to lose all her hair as she had been dreading, she began to put things in perspective and was able to calm down and start to enjoy the process more.  She came to realize that, in the end, all the little hiccups you come across along the path to your wedding are part of what will make your wedding memorable.  So when the hair dresser gets rollers stuck in your hair on the morning of your wedding (like mine did), just sit there and smile and think of what a great story it will make to tell your kids one day.
2.  Don’t be afraid to ask for help:  This is probably the biggest regret from my own wedding.  I was living away from my friends and family for most of the wedding process and because of that, and the fact that I didn’t want to burden others with what I thought of as my responsibility, I tried to do everything myself.  Considering that I was the first of my friends to get married and I hadn’t been to any weddings since I was a kid, I am amazed that everything turned out as well as it did.  I wish that I had gotten others involved though, if for nothing else but to get more ideas and choices.  I had no idea at the time that there were so many options of doing everything.  I didn’t know that it was possible to play games at the reception, do cupcakes instead of the traditional cake, change dresses for the reception, etc...  Even if you have a specific idea of what your wedding will be, it doesn’t hurt to get out there and see what other options are available – you never know what kinds of great ideas you will come across.  And don’t feel bad about asking others for help; if they are anything like me they will jump at the chance.  Plus, the more helpers you have, the less chance of you getting so stressed out that you require a wig for your wedding day.
3.  That being said, Do what you want:  At the end of the day, this day is all about you and your soon-to-be-spouse.  While it is great to get ideas from everyone, don’t let anyone guilt you into doing what they want you to do.  Whether that involves having strippers at your bachelorette, wearing your mom’s old wedding dress, or having people there that you don’t want, you need to put your foot down.  It is amazing how hard it can be to be selfish for just one day, but you have a right to do that.
Believe me, it can be very nerve wracking when the time comes to walk down the aisle.  Everyone is staring at you, you are trying not to trip, and you have spent hours memorizing your spouse’s family tree so you don’t insult anyone, but the minute their second cousin, twice removed, comes to say hi your mind goes blank.  With all this pressure, don’t you think you deserve to eat what you want that day?  So if you have a bitchy-betty telling you what you have to do on your wedding day, you have every right to tell her where she can shove your bouquet.
So basically that last point gives you the right to ignore everything I have said here if you so choose.  I promise I won’t be offended.  At the end of the day, I just wish that all the brides out there find all the love that they need, all the joy they deserve and all the happiness they can handle.  Marriage is not always easy, but it has been one of the greatest experiences of my life.  The wedding is only the beginning of your journey; I hope you enjoy the ride.

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

It's that Time of the Week...

The kids are screaming, the house is a mess and my husband is quietly gagging as he changes diapers.  Yup, it’s the weekend.  Or at least what other people consider the weekend to be.  For me, weekends are a thing of the past – they disappeared along with my pre-baby body, and I have serious doubts as to whether I will ever enjoy either again.
I miss the weekends.  Before I had kids my weekends would consist of sleeping through McDonald’s breakfast, reading a book that wasn’t based on a cartoon character, and eating nothing but a chocolate bar and a bag of potato chips because I damn well wasn’t cooking anything.  Now weekends are basically the same as every other day of the week except now I have to take care of three kids instead of two.
No, we don’t take in stray kids on the weekend.  The third child is Edward.  Don’t get me wrong, at least I don’t have to wipe his behind, but he is like a kid in that he is messy and requires amusement.  I really can’t blame him – he works at his job 5 days a week and doesn’t want to spend his weekend cleaning or taking care of kids.  Problem is, neither do I, but someone has to.   The result of all this is that I either say ‘screw it’ and refuse to clean, cook or discipline on the weekend and we end up in a nasty mess that takes until Wednesday to clean up, or I do work but I become the bitch-mom from hell because I still believe that I deserve the weekend off.  Either way, we don’t have any fun. 
In addition to my regular mom duties, there is also a lot of pressure to get out and do ‘family activities’ on the weekends.  This is the only quality time my husband gets with the kids and he wants to get out and create memories for them.  While this is great and I want that special family time too, Edward often forgets all the work required to go somewhere for a whole day with two kids this young.   What with snacks, diapers, toys, blankies and all the other paraphernalia you need to pack and unpack, plus the physical strain of chasing them, carrying them, and calming them down when they have missed their naps, at the end of the day you don’t even have the energy to pee let alone anything else. 
And then of course every time I turn on the radio Bruno Mars is there rubbing salt in my no-weekend wound with The Lazy Song.  Like I really need to be reminded of everything I want to do on weekends (and a lot of other days) but can’t.  I blame him and Rebecca Black with her damn Friday song for making me think that I am actually going to get a break on the weekend.  Damn young famous people with their crazy ideas.
For some reason I can’t get it though my head that I do NOT have free time on the weekends anymore.  For 24 years it was drilled into my head that weekends were for relaxing, and even after 3+ years of working weekends I still expect a break come Saturday.  So every weekend, I end up with a list of umpteen things I have to do sans kids that never gets done.  
Don’t get me wrong, Edward and I have tried many different schemes to improve the state of our weekends, but have yet to develop a successful plan.  We have tried alternating days to sleep in, but somehow something always happens to screw up my day.  This week it was the fact that Prince has an ear infection and required his medicine at 7:30am and my husband was worried that, at that hour of the morning, he would end up accidentally poisoning our child if he was the one to dispense it.  And last week we all had to get up super early on my sleep-in day for one of the special weekend outings my husband likes so much.  So yeah, that plan just ain’t working.
We have also tried alternating afternoons off – i.e. I get Saturday afternoon off to do my stuff and Edward gets Sunday afternoon off.  Yet again though, either we end up doing some family event that pre-empts time off or Edward gets so flustered with the kids by himself he is constantly interrupting me with requests and questions.  It has reached the point where I actually look forward to Monday.  At least on Monday I know I am supposed to be working and don’t feel spiteful when I am forced to.  On Monday I can get the kids back on schedule, hopefully get the house in better shape, and I have 5 whole days until I have to live through another so-called weekend. 
Apparently, there is just no escaping Mommyland on the weekends.  For now I will have to be satisfied with locking myself in the bathroom for a half an hour and using the excuse that I must have ate something that disagreed with me just so I can have some alone time.   Because apparently the only acceptable excuse to get out of cleaning shit is to be having a shit.  Ironic isn’t it?  However, since I no longer sleep through McDonald’s breakfast, there ain’t much chance I will be getting my pre-baby body back anytime soon, so I will take what I can get.  And if I have to lie down in an empty bathtub to take a damn nap on the weekend, well, it’s better than nothing.   


Friday, 10 June 2011

Ignorance is Bliss

**Warning – Reading this post may result in the loss of blissful ignorance, and the ingestion of large amounts of chocolate may be required to return you to your previous blissful state.  Read at your own risk. **
Every time I turn on the T.V, read a newspaper or go on the internet there is some new study that is saying that such-and-such will kill you.  If I wasn`t a mom, I probably wouldn`t spare much attention, as I am not that concerned about myself.  However, my kids are a different matter and require the best of everything, so I am forced to take notes and try to adjust my life accordingly.
Case in point – we are currently trying to find a new house.  Simple enough right?  Not even close.  Trying to find a house that is not within 2 kilometres of high voltage lines, radio towers or cell towers is proving damn near impossible.  Why do I want to avoid all of these locations?  Because apparently living in those areas can kill you.
Not right away of course.  But from what I have read, if you live near high voltage lines, cell phone or radio towers for more than 3-5 years it greatly increases the risk of developing cancer – especially in children.  You may think that it would be pretty easy to avoid these things – they are big and fairly obvious right?  Wrong.  I just read an editorial in my local newspaper that revealed that a flagpole in front of a senior’s complex in our area was actually a radio tower in disguise.  Apparently someone in the government figured that seniors are going to die soon anyway so it didn’t really matter if they live within a few meters of a major source of radiation – yet what really bothers me is that they went to the trouble of disguising it – and as a patriotic symbol no less. 
Even if we are lucky enough to find a place that is not next to major power lines or towers, there are lots of other things out there waiting to get us.  Like Zoodles, or any other food out of a can for that matter.  You may remember a few years back there was a big outcry (in Canada at least) because it was discovered that a known carcinogen called BPA was in baby bottles.  So the government banned all baby bottles containing BPA (or Bisphenol A) so that the chemical could not leak out into the baby’s milk, as had been happening upon heating.  Yet BPA is used in every canned food product as a lining to stop your food from tasting like metal.  And has anyone noticed that baby formula COMES IN CANS!!!  Seriously people – what good is it to take the BPA out of the baby bottles if you are going to leave it in the formula!  And in every other canned good that people eat.  Again, BPA will supposedly affect kids faster and to a greater extent than it will adults but I don’t think being poisoned slowly is that much better than being poisoned quickly, so why is it ok that BPA is in so many adult products?  Can somebody please take the BPA out of cans so I can eat some damn Zoodles already? 
So to recap, the damn health reports have lead me on the house hunt from hell and caused me to ban canned food products.  If that was all, I probably wouldn’t be complaining to you now.  The next report I read told me that I had to avoid food or cosmetics with propylene glycol in it.  This is a chemical used in anti-freeze and brake fluid and it is found in way more foods than you would expect.  Many ice creams, frozen cakes, low fat salad dressings, soups and sour cream are just a few of the foods I have found it in.  It is commonly used to thicken low fat products without adding extra fat or calories.  And if there are any fans of Desperate Housewives out there you will know that anti-freeze is something you use to poison your enemies when you want to give them a slow and painful death.  So it is not something you want to be eating frequently– or putting on your skin or hair.  In Europe they have actually banned the use of propylene glycol in food products, though it does not look like the government will be doing that here anytime soon.  While propylene glycol has not yet been linked to cancer in clinical studies it has been linked to skin, liver and kidney damage and again, impacts children and especially fetuses to a greater extent.  Just what I needed to find out after the ice cream addiction I had during my last pregnancy. 
Then, as a final kick in the ass I find out that many of the appliances and electronic devises in our home can also be detrimental to my kid’s health.  I had known of course about the rumours that cell phones cause brain tumours, microwaves cause cancer, and even computers and televisions give off low amounts of radiation.  However, I recently learned that wireless internet can cause infertility in men especially when exposed as children for a long period of time.  This is especially concerning to me as the mother of two boys.  I would like grandkids someday you know.  In our area they are actually considering taking Wi-Fi out of schools because of this.  Considering that I am currently talking on my cell phone while watching T.V and posting this to the internet on my laptop using Wi-Fi, I am surprised I have not keeled over yet.
My conclusions?  Ignorance is bliss. Sometimes I would love to just erase all my memories of these disturbing facts so I wouldn’t have to worry so damn much.  However, as much as this would be awesome for me, in the long run it is better to know all this crap for my kid’s sake.  Imagine if I didn’t know and somehow contributed to some future health problem in them unknowingly.  It would be horrible to find out later that there was something I could have done that was a simple as avoiding certain things that could have saved my child.  That being said, I do try to take these studies with a grain of salt and not let them rule my life.  As long as my family is not living off of canned veggies, spam and ice cream we will probably be ok.  They say knowledge is power, but it can be an awful burden too. 

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

‘I Ought to Drink Them All’ – The Adele Mommy-Mix

I don’t know about you, but when a song or a melody gets stuck in my head I have the bad habit of making up my own lyrics to go along with the music.  As a mom I have done this many times for my kids amusement – so much so that Prince has started do it too.  Just yesterday I caught him singing “Twinkle, twinkle, little Buzz(as in lightyear), how I wonder what you is.”
 I am telling you all of this because recently I was giving the boys a bath and I had the Adele song “Rolling in the Deep” stuck in my head.  If you haven’t heard this song you must have been living in Antarctica for the past few months, and even there I wouldn’t be surprised if the penguins were squawking it out.  Anyway, the tune was stuck in my head and I just started adding my own lyrics based on what was happening at the moment.  Think Weird Al, mommy-style.  Before the end of bath time I had written the first verse and the chorus.  I shared my lyrics with a few friends and they thought it was so hilarious that I thought I would share it with you all as well, especially since the content is so mommy-related.  But if you know me, you know that I tend to take things to the extreme.  So not only did I write lyrics for the entire song, I also figured a music video was in order. 
Somehow I managed to convince/bribe/threaten Alice into helping out and together we begged/pleaded/cried until my friend Dawn (who can sing better than either of us and is not opposed to being embarrassed on the internet) agreed to sing and act out my song for the music video. 
Now, before you view the wonder that is our music video, a few notes:  If you haven’t noticed already, Alice and I are big SNL fans.  So like on SNL, our music video is all in good fun and not meant to be taken literally.  We really don’t want you all thinking that this is an accurate representation of a typical night for us.  Also, no alcohol was consumed during the making of this video – only cranberry and apple juice.   Finally, as everyone involved in the making of this video has kids, we only had a limited amount of time to shoot it.  Specifically between the hours of 9-12 at night.  What with the props, staging, blocking, and technical difficulties, this only allowed us to shoot the video three times.  Therefore, it is not quite perfect and you will have to excuse the fact that our star bursts out laughing at one point – it was really our fault anyway as we were laughing so hard at her off camera.  But here it is, the best of the three, and we hope you get as many laughs out of it as we did.

P.S – Please let us know what you thought of this feature.  We are currently thinking of making Mommy-Mixes for other songs as well, but will only post them if you all enjoy the concept.  You can comment below, email us at or comment on our youtube page.  If you all like the idea, our next Mommy-Mix will be to 'Blow' by Ke$ha.  Also, the lyrics for this Mommy-Mix are below in case you can’t make out all of the words in the video.

There’s my baby, playin in the tub
Singin’ his alphabet and given his brother hugs
Finally I have a chance to think
When the kids go to bed I’m gonna go get a drink

Today has been so hard to get through
One kid fell down the stairs and the other one lost his shoes
I don’t have time to pee, don’t even have time to blink
I’m so not kiddin when I say I need a drink.

A nice red wine or an ice cold beer
I can’t help thinkin that I ought to drink them all
A shot of schnapps or some hard lemonade
I can’t help thinkin that

I ought to drink them all-all-all
So I can get some slee-e-ep
I am so freaking tired
I don’t wanna hear a peep

I’m outnumbered that much I can tell
As soon as one calms down the other one starts to yell
Then their diapers really start to stink
How much longer till I can go get a drink?

A nice red wine or an ice cold beer
I can’t help thinkin that I ought to drink them all
A shot of schnapps or some hard lemonade
I can’t help thinkin that

I ought to drink them all-all-all
So I can get some slee-e-ep
I am so freaking tired
I don’t wanna hear a peep

I ought to drink them all-all-all
So I can get some slee-e-ep
I am so freaking tired
I don’t wanna hear a peep

All day long I’m runnin up and down
Chasing then everywhere I must have lost 5 pounds
Dirty dishes fillin up my sink
Please try to understand how badly I need a drink!

I ought to drink them all, I ought to drink them all
Them all, them all, them all...

I ought to drink them all-all-all
So I can get some slee-e-ep
I am so freaking tired
I don’t wanna hear a peep

I ought to drink them all-all-all
So I can get some slee-e-ep
I am so freaking tired
I don’t wanna, don’t wanna, don’t wanna, don’t wanna hear a peep.

-Wendy (aka –the Mommy-mixing genius)

Friday, 3 June 2011

Why Moms Are So Awesome

Have you ever offered to pick someone’s boogers?  Have you ever caught someone’s puke in your bare hands on purpose?  Have you ever wiped someone’s butt for them?    If so, you are either a very devoted nurse, or a mother.
While I was away on vacation (I use the term loosely) recently, I had an experience that not only made me realize how amazing moms are but also proved to me just how much I love my kids.  I know that we moms often say that we would do ANYTHING for our kids.  Well, we ain’t kidding. 
I don’t even know where to begin.  I guess I could blame it on the fog.  Anyone would go a little bit crazy after spending an entire week living inside a cloud – I felt like a damn Care Bear.  My hair totally lost its mind, that’s for sure – if you are a Friends fan, picture Monica’s hair when she went to Barbados– then double it.  Anyway, a day finally arrived where you could see more than two feet in front of you, so after being cooped up all week I decided to take the kids to the park. 
If I had not been so stir crazy I might have seen the warning signs that this trip was not going to go smoothly.  Before we left Prince was dancing around like he was auditioning for the Party Rock Anthem video while constantly grabbing at his nether regions.  Despite evidence to the contrary, I am not completely stupid, so I did make sure that he went potty before we left.  But when not much came of it, I put his antsyness down to the fact we had been stuck inside so long and set off to the park anyway. 
If you are a mom, you probably already know where I am going with this.  After the 20 minute walk to the park, the second I get Simba out of the stroller, Prince pipes up with “I have to go POOP!”  Now, this is a park in the middle of a subdivision.  There are no gas stations, stores or restaurants in the vicinity.  My only options are to let him crap in his pants or discretely take him into the patch of trees that would be a stretch to call woods.  Needless to say, I went for option B. 
Luckily Bridget was with us so I did not have to take Simba off-roading in the stroller.  I simply took Prince by the hand and prayed that I could find somewhere with enough coverage that the other parents at the park wouldn’t know that I was letting my kid use the park as his own private potty.  I managed to find a little path that led down to a stream that ran through the park, and there was just enough of a bank there to hide us from view. 
I have to say Prince was really great about the whole thing.  By the ‘whole thing’ I mean the fact that I squatted down and held him in a cradle-like position while he crapped on the ground and sprayed me with the pee that sometimes leaks out when doing #2.  He also was very good about letting me wipe his ass with leaves from a nearby plant that I hope wasn’t poison ivy, and he didn’t repeat any of the swear words that I hollered when I stepped in his fresh poop on my way to get the aforementioned leaves.  Oh shit is right.
I never thought I would miss the days when my kids were in diapers, but then again I never thought I would voluntarily wipe someone’s poopy ass with leaves, which by the way, doesn’t really work and just results in dirty fingers and bits of foliage stuck in your arse.  So after I washed my dirty fingers (and shoe) in the stream and made my way back to the park as if nothing had happened, I had my own Oprah-style “ah-ha” moment.  I realized that under no circumstances would I ever do what I had just done for anyone else in the world except my kids.  Not for my husband, my parents, and probably not even for myself.  Just for my kids.  So yes, Moms are amazing, because we love our kids to a degree that some may consider unsanitary.
All joking aside, I hope that I always love my kids the way I do now.  Because right now, it wouldn’t matter what they did for a living, who they loved, or how much trouble they get into – I would always be there for them.  Right now it is really hard to imagine how anyone could hate their kids just for making decisions that they didn’t approve of.  Yes, you have to teach and sometimes discipline your kids, but no matter how mad I get I will always be there for them.  Even if that means wiping their butts with leaves when they’re 30.