You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
The unknowns.  I wish I could say “the unknowns, plain and simple.” But it’s not plain and simple, not at all. There are so many fears, questions, and concerns that come with parenting. None of it is easy, and none of it is perfect.

Before I had kids, everyone made parenting out to be the most awesome, easy, natural thing they’d ever done… it sounded PERFECT! I made up in my head what an awesome, calm, relaxed, fun mom I was going to be. I knew I wanted to be strict (not horribly, but I wanted to be respected). I always imagined my children to be perfect sweethearts with perfect manners, never to throw tantrums, children that were fun yet calm.

Come 2010, I was freaking out that this made up “family” story was actually happening. I was pregnant with Quinn. It was an awesome pregnancy…PERFECT! I felt like no one had let me down. I felt great, I loved being pregnant. It felt natural. It was, well, PERFECT!

Once our beautiful Quinn had arrived, all these parents that once had me convinced of how easy and awesome parenting was, they started coming out of the wood work with horror  stories and advice on how to deal with certain situations and a lot of, “oh just wait til they start doing…” “WHAT?! WHY ARE YOU PEOPLE TELLING ME THIS NOW?!” But I still had my perfect sense of the mom and child we would grow into…

Well, that perfect family story soon vanished. I am NOT that calm, fun, relaxed (yet a little strict) mom I thought I was going to be. I AM A MESS… I am emotional, protective (maybe even over protective), confused (ALL THE TIME), and always stressed. The only thing that stayed the same from my dream to my reality is I am strict. But now I wonder, am I too strict?! Am I trying to make my innocent children grow up too fast? How do I know? How do I know whats best for my children? I don’t. It’s scary, really scary. I can act like I know what is right for them, but it really is a guessing game, the whole time.

Sure I made up the perfect family in my head. Sure, I was convinced I KNEW how I was going to raise them and I KNEW how they would behave…pfft. Yeah right! I know and have always known how different each child is. But when it comes to your own, you don’t want to believe anything other than your made up fairy tale family.

The only thing I can honestly say about parenting and all of the unknowns, I LOVE MY CHILDREN. I have since the second I peed on that stick and knew in my heart I was pregnant. I have NEVER doubted my love for my children. Yes, they push me to my limits and we all have our melt downs, but at the end of the day, they are and forever will be my babies. The easiest, most natural feeling of love I could ever have for another human being… But is love enough if I am doing everything else wrong? Am I even doing it wrong, or am I just freaking out?! These are the unknowns I will never know. All I want is a happy family FULL of LOVE and RESPECT.

Maybe I am doing something right. Tonight at dinner Quinn said, “All I want for Christmas is my whole (insert adorable arms spreading out) family together.” That has to be the sweetest thing I have ever heard out of a 3 (almost 4) year olds mouth, and we all cried… THAT is love, and at the moment, everything was PERFECT…

Fast forward to 20 minutes after dinner~~ resume chaos and resume fears of the unknowns and the “am I doing this right?”


Sick? Too Bad Mommy

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
No sick days! Yup, that’s right. If you get sick, too bad Mommy, suck it up and bust through your day, like it’s any other day of the week.

Kids get sick days. Daddy’s get sick days. Mommy’s, nope, not you. Whether you work or not, you still have to play your role as Mommy (even if you take a sick day from work). Someone has to make sure the kids aren’t killing each-other, or the pets, or the house.

I notice a lot of men don’t get the same treatment. Why do kids understand when Daddy is sick but not Mommy? I can’t answer that question. Wish I could, as I am sitting here dripping with snot, achy all over, and feverish. I still am running about being the busy Mom that has to entertain and chase and keep my little ones safe. I can tell them “mommy is sick” until I turn blue in the face, but they are still going to say “oh okay mommy” and keep bouncing off the walls. It does not matter to them I am sick and tired and that all I really need is to rest.

And you know what, I can’t be mad at them for that. Right now they don’t fully understand the concept. One day they will. But until then, to all you sick Mommys out there (myself included), you will get through this. We all do. So try to stay healthy and keep positive. Run your marathon race of being a Mommy, you will get your rest as soon as those babies lay their heads down to sleep.

What Happened to my Music Taste?

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
I miss my music! Sure I still listen to my music a lot, but not as frequently as I hear my kids favorite songs and TV theme songs.

Sometimes I wake up humming the theme songs to Sesame Street, Curious George, and even just the ABCs. I wake up thinking, “Okay, it’s official, I’m a Mom! Gosh, I miss my music,” and then I laugh and laugh and laugh. And then I try to refresh my head with my music again. Sometimes I really miss loud “rock and roll” or “grunge” or just any music that is not Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Sometimes I just need The Dandy Warhols, Queens of the Stone Age, or my forever favorite since I was a little girl, The Beatles.

I am not one of those parents that hides my own personal music taste though. I was brought up in a house full of a wide variety of awesome (sometimes loud) music. Thanks Dad! To this day, I still enjoy and listen to the music I was brought up on. I want that for my kids as well. I hope my kids can always have that one common interest with my husband and I forever, like I do with my parents. I believe music brings people together, it lightens the soul, and guides you through certain times in your life. Sure, there are certain things I don’t want my kids listening to (not age appropriate, or once you hear a 3-year-old sing it, only then will you realize how dirty some songs are) but I try not to shelter them from anything. I want them to develop their own tastes as well.

I also know that one day, I will miss having these kids songs in my head and I should love and appreciate the times I get to see my kids dancing and singing these cute little tunes. And I do. But I also can’t wait to share the love of adult music with them as they grow older and become their own person. Who knows, maybe one day they will introduce me to something new and awesome…

Whats that Smell- Part 2

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
The “Are you kidding me” poop. Not sure what that is? It’s the poop your child takes right after you just change their diaper. “Oh thanks Mommy/Daddy! This new diaper would be great to *grunt* poop in *grunt* right about now *GRUNT* Oh yeah.” “Really? Are you kidding me? Again? I just changed your diaper.” See where I got the name? It is THEE most annoying poop there is…

This topic has really been bugging me lately. Why? Because it is happening ALL OF THE TIME lately. And normally it is right after you change the diaper to go somewhere. (Normally somewhere with an appointment, and now you are running later than you already were). Things like this ALWAYS seem to happen at the most inopportune time.

Another reason it is really bugging me is because I have been diagnosed with some crazy, weird, eczema called Dyshidrotic Eczema. It hurts. It itches. They (my fingers and hands) are extremely tender. Did I mention it hurts? Try and think of the worst wintery chapped hands you have ever had, then multiply that times 1,000. The freaking air hurts my hands. So you can imagine, when I have to change a diaper twice within 5-10 minutes, I am not only annoyed, now I am pissed because my hands are burning like HELL (yes, even with gloves on)!

So, the “Are you Kidding Me” Poop wins it for this week’s Grinding My (Parental) Gears. Now, excuse me while I go change into my gloves *sigh*

So I’m a little Selfish

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
The act of being selfless. Yes, you read that correctly. I want to be selfish (just a little) again. I kind of miss… me. Now before you start yelling at your screens at me, understand first, how selfless one becomes after having children. And that’s how it should be. Everything we do should be for our kids… EVERYTHING!

A recent and well deserved night out with some friends actually prompted this post. I was dragging, nagging, and just down right “wild looking” as my husband calls it (the look of losing my mind). He said there was NO WAY I was getting “Cabin Fever” this early so he told me to go out with my friends. And let me tell you, that was the briefest but most relaxing two hours I have had in weeks. I felt HUMAN again! I could laugh with adults about adult situations. I could leave the baby talk at home and cuss like the lady sailor that I am. I didn’t have to worry about anyone but me for those two hours (of course I did still worry if the kids were in bed and if the husband was okay).

I hardly ever “go out” anymore, I never really did in the first place but the fact that I COULD HAVE at any time was always refreshing. I really do miss being spontaneous and doing whatever I wanted when I wanted. I miss going shopping and spending hours doing it. I miss going to get my hair and nails done whenever I wanted. I miss going out to eat with friends whenever we wanted. I miss dating my husband.

But being a parent makes me forget about all of that. If I do go shopping, it’s for them. If we go out to eat, it’s “kids meals” at a “kid friendly” restaurant. If I go get my hair and nails done, it’s in my basement when the kids are asleep (I’ve turned my husband into a pretty good beautician). If the husband and I go on a date, it’s once a year (pathetic right? We are working on that though).

My point is, it’s okay to be selfish once in a while. I’m not saying all the time and to go crazy. I know that with the first thought of even having children one has to leave the selfishness behind, and both my husband and I have. But if you don’t take care of you, how are you going to take care of others that depend on you?! So celebrate you once in a while! Do what you want to do, even if it is for a super quick two hours. You will feel so refreshed. Your partner will appreciate it and most of all, your kids will appreciate a happy, calm, and relaxed parent.


Whats that Smell?

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
Playing hide and seek with a lost sippy cup…FULL OF MILK!!! That has to be one of the scariest moments of the day when you realize “Oh CRAP! Where is that cup? Did it have milk in it?” and then the final realization of, “Of course it had milk in it.” For you new parents or friends without kids, I’m not lying. This really is scary… Why, you ask?

Well… IT STINKS, it turns into cottage cheese (very quickly, I might add), and kids actually have pretty impressive hiding skills.

I have found that nasty sippy cup of milk in some weird places:

  • Between the mattress and box springs
  • Inside a pack of Diapers
  • Inside a pillow case
  • In the bath tub with the curtain closed
  • Inside the trunk of his Winnie The Pooh push toy (convenient how it fits just perfect *eyes roll*)
  • In the oven (yes, it was off. Yes, it was locked, he figured it out *another eye roll*)

It’s not only sippy cups of milk either. So hide your things well from your children if you don’t want to go on the hardest game of hide and seek. My oldest once hid our car keys tucked nicely into the Christmas tree (he put the key ring around a branch and it was like he wrapped it and disguised it perfectly)! Remember, these things your kids are or will be hiding, they don’t talk, they don’t laugh, they don’t give themselves up. Normally the smell does first….

My best blame game I remember for hiding things was, “Well, the Piano did it!” I’ll just let that bring back some fond memories for you all and remind you of what you have to look forward to…

Creepy, Weird, and Unacceptable (but acceptable)

You know what really grinds my (parental) gears?
Totally unacceptable (but acceptable) behaviors kids show. I mean, how creepy, weird, and totally unacceptable they act, ALL THE TIME. Sure, sometimes it’s cute and sometimes it is funny. But WOW, kids are WEIRD!

It’s funny to me how unacceptable these behaviors would be if we as adults demonstrated them. Don’t believe me? Here, take a look at this

Oh, you need some more evidence of how WEIRD and CREEPY kids are? These are all totally UNACCEPTABLE for adults

The first video… dead on. My oldest son, who is 3, has done EVERY SINGLE one of those acts. EVERY SINGLE ONE!
But you know, what? They ARE just kids. THEY are STILL learning. That is why it is ACCEPTABLE (but unacceptable) for them to do those weird things. We KNOW better, they do not. WE have to teach them right from wrong. We have to teach them what is and is not acceptable in society.

This kind of goes hand in hand with my temper tantrum post. Don’t be so quick to judge the child OR the parents for this weird, sometimes creepy and unacceptable behavior. Maybe it’s the first time this child has discovered this new weirdness or maybe this parent hasn’t figured out a way to address this creepiness yet.

Parenting really is a HUGE life learning experience. It teaches us, as parents, to also reflect on our own personal behavior and how creepy we actually are. Kids are great copy cats and let me tell you something… THEY LEARN FAST. So for now, enjoy how weird and creepy they are. Embrace it! Have fun with it! But still, please, try and teach them right from wrong. Weird is okay, even for adults. Creepy, well, that’s a tough one, good luck with that…