Thursday, March 28, 2013

Hippity hop, Easter's on it's way!

Over the weekend, we had an Easter Egg Hunt and Brunch for Little P and a few of her friends. The candy was plentiful, the food was tasty and the Mimosa's were flowing (cause, you know, that's how I roll).
'I see it!'
So this week, instead of a 'Nailed It' post, I'm going to do something a little different and show you how we managed to pull of this little feat, considering I was out EVERY. SINGLE. NIGHT. leading up to it (not on purpose, I swear, it's just kind of how it worked out), and let me tell you, I was one tired Momma by the end of it. But all the effort was so totally worth it.

First, I had to work out if I was going to theme it (there are way too many ideas on Pinterest for this), but in the end decided to keep it pretty simple. I used this bag topper, from the lovely ladies at eighteen25, got these great chevron goody bags from 'Pick Your Plum', and my very talented friend Sierra, made bunnies for the kids to take home with them.

(excuse the quality and the backgrounds - I was running around
madly trying to get pic's taken before everyone turned up)
Then it was a matter of deciding about the food. I went with a simple BBQ idea, as it was going to be early (everyone arrived around 10am) and our guests brought a side dish to go with the burgers, hot dogs and chicken that M had on the grill (which I of course neglected to pictures of).

'Found another one!'
And of course, there were plenty of chocolate Easter eggs to go around (I think these were probably the biggest hit).

The hunt in progress
The kids had a blast finding the eggs, the grown-ups got to enjoy a little conversation, some tasty treats and a liquid libation or two.

At the end of it, the kids went home with their bunnies, goody bags and 'Bunny Tails' (and were probably a little wired from all the chocolate that was consumed while they were here), the grown-ups left with full tummies and happy little ones, and M, Little P and I all promptly went and had a nap.
Great printable from Dave's Wife

Sounds like a pretty good day to me. What says you?

Till next time,


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Bang! Bang! You're...

Wait. Lightsabers don't go 'bang bang'.

Little P is definitely our kid. If you ask her what does Darth Vader sound like, she'll put her hand up in a little fist over her mouth and breath heavy (it's frigging hilarious). Ask her what a Wookie sounds like and she'll 'howl' like Chewbacca. She knows who Yoda is, who Han and Luke are and even what the Millenium Falcon sounds like.
Little P doing her 'Darth Vader' impersonation.
Apparently the bowl from a salad spinner makes a good helmet.
Who knew?
All without ever having seen any of the movies (cause, she's too little for that kind of viewing). 

Most of it is due to M and I being big old geeks. We have Star Wars memorabilia all over the house (not a lot of it, but enough). And for Christmas last year, she got a 'Star Wars ABC' book, which is where most of her Star Wars knowledge comes from (that and the fact that M and I might quote it from time to time).

Recently, during a brief moment of cooperation as I was changing her, Little P had a chapstick and was holding it with both hands making a 'vvvmmm' sound (apparently that's the technical term for 'lightsaber noise'. Thank you Yahoo Answers.). She had me a little stumped there for a while, and then it clicked. 'Honey, is that a lightsaber?' She nods her head 'yes'. Well what do you know? That's on new one on me.

Naturally, I of course grabbed another chapstick and we spent the next ten minutes having a lightsaber duel, making noises, and with me, obviously, being dealt the death blow. If anyone had of been able to see us, they would have wondered what on earth we were doing.

Fast forward a couple of days later, and we are at the local park, when Little P picks up what looks like the handle of a plastic toy gun. For a moment, I'm a little freaked, as we don't play with 'guns' at home (she of course could have seen it at school) and was wondering if I should discourage this kind of play or let her just have at it, when she starts going 'vvmmm' again. Yay for lightsabers! That's one less conversation M and I have to have, for a little while at least.

I'm not saying that kids playing make believe with guns is a bad thing (heck, I used to do it all the time with my brother, although I think we used blasters - there's Star Wars again). It's just that, in this very charged environment about pro-guns / anit-guns, things are a little nuts (like the two little boys who got suspended for 'shooting' each other with their fingers. They are SIX!!). As a parent, you tend to feel, um, worried? Overprotective? Concerned? About how another parent might react to your little one running around going 'bang bang'. And seriously, there are so many more important things to be worrying about then whether or not Little Johnny’s parents are going to flip out if they see your little one ‘shooting’ him.

So, till next time dear readers, remember as Obi-Wan so eloquently puts it ‘Anyone can use a blaster or a fusioncutter – but to use a lightsaber well, was a mark of someone a cut above ordinary.’ (and really, who wants to be ordinary?)


Monday, March 25, 2013

You are a Bad Mommy

I got a phone call from a Mommy friend of mine the other day asking if I wanted to meet up for lunch. I hadn't seen her since I started working again, so I jumped at the chance to catch up with her (and maybe some idle gossip...), but the minute I saw her in the restaurant, I knew that wasn't going to happen.

Ms. M is normally one very happy, bouncy individual (when I see her I think of Melody from 'Josie and the Pussycats' - everything is glitter and puppies and unicorns). But that day, she looked like an extra from the 'Walking Dead'.

I asked her what was going on and then the Nigara Falls of tears started and it took me a good couple of minutes to get her to the point where she could talk and I could actually understand her.

'My MIL says I'm a Bad Mother!!'

Um, say what? 

mother in law

Turns out, that MIL has been staying with them for the past two weeks. They invited her down to spend some time with their girls for their birthday's and for Easter, since she lives on the East Coast. But since she has been there, she has critized every single thing that Ms. M does for her girls (they are 2 and 4).

'They shouldn't be wearing that, it's too cold / hot / windy.'
'They really shouldn't be eating that twice in one week.'
'You aren't doing the alphabet with them properly.'

And so on. 

Now, I could understand her MIL's concern if these girls were dirty, unhappy and under fed kids. But they aren't. They are smart, funny, out going little girls who are well-fed and well loved. I of course, immediately got angry about the situation, and had to hold myself back from picking up her phone and calling her MIL to give her a piece of my mind (cause, you know, that's just how I roll). 

Instead, I suggested that maybe, if Ms. M sat her MIL down and told her how much her critizing her hurt her, and that if that was all she was going to do, instead of actually enjoying spending time with her granddaughters, then maybe she should simply go back home. Ms. M kind of baulked at that idea, especially since Hubby hadn't been any help at all (he's 'not taking sides' - what a crock). 

After a couple of glasses of wine and some more encouragement from me, she decided that she needed to 'lay down the law'. It was her house, and they were her kids, so if her MIL didn't like how she was raising them, she could go stick it (yay! You go girl).

I got a call from her over the weekend, and my happy, bouncy friend was back. She had made Hubby watch the girls for a couple of hours and had taken her MIL out for coffee and told her what was what. At the start, her MIL went all red and puffy ('like she was about to blow a fuse'), but by the end of it, she just looked sad. Apparently, she had been paying just a little too much attention to her 'bingo buddies' who had filled her mind with all the horrible things that the girls could get up to living in Las Vegas. Again, they are 2 and 4 - not quite sure what they thought they could be getting up to. Hence the critizism. Even when she realized that they were happy, well loved kids, she couldn't stop.

Needless to say, after much crying and promises to talk more often via Skype, MIL and Ms. M are now the bestest of buds and things in the house are much more relaxed and fun. 

I've said it before and I'll say it again, don't judge how other people parent. It's the whole 'those in glass houses' deal. 

Till next time - don't get your panties in a wad over someone's opinion of you. Just ain't worth it.


Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Some days are better than others

You know those days when everything just falls into place? Where you wake up and the sun is shining, your little one is still blissfully asleep, and the day ahead is full of promise and adventure?

This was NOT one of those days.

This was the plan: get up early, get the munchkin up and dressed, wake up M and then head out to see the St. Patrick’s Day parade at the Water District. Explore the carnival there, maybe catch some live music and have lunch, then head home with Little P falling asleep on the way. She takes a nap, M goes to work, I get some quality me time and catch up on a book, then head out to a Baby Shower and get to spend some time with Mommy friends. Come home, bath, bed time, cuddles and go fall into a blissful and satisfied sleep.

Ah, delusions of grandeur....

What actually happened was this:

P was awake insanely early, which, is normally okay, as I can usually get her to go back to sleep with a little encouragement. Not this morning. It took the better part of an hour before she was actually ‘out of it’ and snoring. Okay, not so bad. Gives me time to make a coffee, grab a shower and get ready before waking up M and getting the munchkin organized.

However, M wasn’t feeling great, and didn’t get to bed till late from working the night before, so he was out for the morning. Okay. No biggie. I can do this. As I’m getting ready to get in the shower, Little P decides now is the time to wake up. *sigh* Okay, I can handle not having a shower (I’ve done worse things). And then the great war of getting dressed begins. Trying to get Little P into anything was such a battle that even Attila the Hun would have balked at attempting it.

While it didn’t go completely downhill (we did get some painting down, and I did get a pretty cool canvas of ‘green flowers’ out of Little P), it was not the most productive of days. She pretty much fought me the entire day; didn’t want to nap, didn’t want to go to the baby shower, when we got to the shower, she didn’t want to go home. Didn’t want to have a bath, didn’t want story time, didn’t want to go to bed…. Ugh.

Kids artwork
the Artist at work

Clovers, St. Patrick's Painting
Little P's idea of what clovers (green flowers) look like
By the time we finally got her down, both M and I were exhausted (him from being sick, me from doing battle with Little P all day). Seriously, some days it’s got to be easier to just throw in the towel than to try and get them to cooperate.

Maybe that’s what I’ll do next time. Make it an unofficial ‘stay in our PJ’s and eat nothing but cereal all day’ day. We will see who cracks first and wants to go out.

Till next time….

Monday, March 18, 2013

Say 'aaahhhh'....

I'm not particularly fond of dentists. Anyone who's job in life is to stick their fingers in other people's mouths all day has always struck me as somewhat suspicious. But someone has to do it, and in the grand scheme of things, we all want to have nice teeth, so I see the need for them. But really, why would anyone choose to be a dentist?

Little P had her first check up recently, and apparently she was a real trooper (I wasn't there, I made M take her, cause, you know, I had to go to work....) and she 'did a good job' (one of Little P's favorite sayings at the moment). M was totally impressed with the dentist - he's friendly, knows what he's doing and isn't pushy. Which I guess, is what we all want in someone who is looking down at you and sticking things that look like medieval torture devices in you mouth for the better part of an hour.

I mentioned, purely in passing, to another Mommy who I ran into at a park later that week, that Little P had been to the dentist, and I was regaled with a tirade of how horrible her little one's first trip to the dentist had been. Normally this wouldn't have bothered me, but let me point out a couple of things.

Firstly, I'm not 'super friendly' with this Momma (she's a friend of a friend) so I didn't need to spend the better part of half an hour listening to her go on and on about this. And secondly, if anyone needs to spend some time in a dentist's chair, it's her, cause (to quote Donkey) she 'definitely needs some Tic Tac's or something because her breath STINKS!' I had a hard time concentrating on what she was saying and interjecting with the appropriate responses while trying not to faint from what was coming out of her mouth every time she opened it.

Tell me, how do people NOT know they have smelly breath? Do the people around them choose not to say something because they don't want to offend, worried that it might actually be a genetic thing that they can't really control? Or is it like when you plug in a new air freshener and you can smell it for like the first couple of days, but then you get used to it so you don't smell it anymore? Or do people simply just not care?

If I knew her better (as in knowing her last name, being a friend on FB or even actually just being able to remember her kids name) I would have worked out a polite way to point out that every time she opened her mouth I was getting hit with a very strong odor of really old, stinky cheese, and that maybe, for the sake of her own health (not to mention the safety of others) she should get that looked at. But I don't, so I didn't and I continued to suffer in silence. 

Thankfully, just as I was thinking of ways to cover my nose and mouth without it potentially offending her, Little P came over and told me she was hungry, so we left to get something to eat, and I was able to start breathing through my nose again without feeling like I was going to throw up every time I took a breath.

So, yeah, that was my afternoon. How was yours?


Friday, March 15, 2013

Acute Case of Mommy (or Daddy) Guilt

We’ve all had it at one time or another. When you are doing something for yourself and get that ‘twang’ thinking you should probably be doing something for your little one/s.

And it doesn’t have to be a big thing. Something as simple as getting yourself a brownie when you are out shopping sans child (rarity that it is) and you think ‘I should have gotten one for the little guy’, which automatically makes the previously very yummy brownie now taste like cardboard.


Lately, for me, it’s been an internal struggle about getting in some gym time. I miss it. I miss the rush you get when you hit that goal, I miss the crazy people that populate the gym, I miss my down time when I get to just switch off and focus on working out. And it shouldn’t be such a big deal. I know Mommies (and Daddies) who go regularly, but with me working full time now, it’s become a bit of a compromise.

I want to work out, but I know that by the time I finish work, pick up Little P from school, get to the gym, put her in the child care there, get changed, work out, pick her up again and get home it’s close to 7:30pm. Which means the rest of our time together that night consists of dinner, bath and then bed time.

Again, *sigh*.

Sure, I can work out at home, but I a) have a gym membership that I would actually like to use and b) I would have to wait till she’s asleep, which would mean working out at like 9pm which is so NOT going to happen.

I know, I know. If you want it bad enough you will make it happen. But how do I quell the guilt I feel from essentially handing Little P over from one day care to another? I know she probably won’t care all that much, heck, the child care at the gym is pretty decked out, but still. Am I shorting her? Is it bad that I want to just jump on a machine and work out like a manic?

Maybe it’s just a matter of easing into it. Instead of going all out, do a couple of times a week and then maybe bump it up to four. And then there’s the whole, ‘if I work out after work, when will I get the laundry done/see my friends/read that book’ quandary.


You know what? I’m just going to do it. A happy Mommy makes for a happy kid/hubby/family right? What’s the worst that could happen?

Till next time….go and pump some iron already.


Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Hair Stylist to the Stars

I'm not sure if it's an age thing or if there is something in the air, but I know of three little 4 year old girls who have all decided to cut their own hair in the last month.

Granted, their Mommy's have been pretty calm, cool and collected about this happening, after all, it is just hair. But, there have been some changes implemented in each of their households since this occured.

Like, no using scissors without Mommy or Daddy present. 
Hair cuts are only done by professionals (and no, just because you gave Barbie a hair cut does not make you a professional). 
And most definitely, no cutting your little brother's / sister's hair either.

And if I'm perfectly honest, these girls are totally rocking their new 'do's'. One is sporting the cutest pixie cut a la Michelle Williams (or Charlize Theron) - and seriously, that's not an easy cut to pull off. One is very chic with her 'Pob' (the Victoria Beckham bob), and the third, well she's looking very Jackie O with her style.

I figure it's kind of a rite of passage. I personally don't remember cutting my own hair (or my brother's for that matter), but doing some research on Google (as you do) it appears that kids around the 4 year mark tend to pick up those sharp, shiny objects and pretty much just go to town with them.

"Four-year-olds are Tarzan chest-pounders, and scissors are really (awesome)," said Betsy Brown Braun, author of "You're Not the Boss of Me" (Harper Paperbacks, $15.99). "Remember the first time you coordinated it and the paper just slipped through? Then it's like Edward Scissorhands — 'Look what I can do! Look what I can do!' The mechanics of scissors make a child feel very powerful."

And, just so all you Mommy's with budding Paul Mitchell's and Vidal Sassoon's out there know, it rears it's head again when they hit their teenage years, so be prepared. 

I have no doubt that there will come a time when Little P looks at a pair of scissors and thinks 'I wonder what I will look like with a mullet?'. I'm hoping that when that time comes, my very talented hair stylist friends have ideas on how to cut, style and survive a four year old's version of a Billy Ray Cyrus do.

Makes life interesting, doesn't it?

Till next time - hide the scissors!


Monday, March 11, 2013

Stop the Crazy.

There comes a time, in pretty much everyone's life, when you want to say 'Stop. I've had enough.' But more often than not, we don't - we push it to the side, forget about it and continue on with our day. Till one day, like a sleeping volcano, something sets you off and 'BAM!!' you explode, usually on some poor unsuspecting fool who just happened to pick the wrong day and time to make a snide comment on your choice of footwear (or hairstyle, or any other silly little thing).

I've mentioned before (here), that if someone has a problem with me, I'd much rather they come up to me and tell me what the issue is, then have it rattle around in their head for days, weeks, months, before saying something to someone else, hoping that it will eventually filter it's way down to me. I'm a big girl. My panties won't get in a wad if you tell me you either a) don't like me, b) don't like the way I parent or c) just generally feel that we aren't cut from the same cloth. 

I like to think I'm a pretty patient person when it comes to other people. I'm also pretty forgiving. But don't expect me to NOT get frustrated when you are all buddy-buddy to my face and then proceed to bash me behind my back to my friends (cause, the people I do call friend, will immediately tell me what a complete and utter ass you are being). 

This goes for posting things on FB or on Twitter, in the vain hopes that I will see it and ask 'What's up?'. Trust me, you aren't that important to me that my life will stop going on just because you don't think I did/said/looked the right way. 

Acting like my BBF one day and then turning around the next and telling me our 'friendship has run it's course' is a little confusing and annoying. If you have felt this way for awhile, say something. Don't get upset with me because I didn't get the obscure hints you kept leaving. And definetly don't get mad because when you decide that we should be friends again, that I don't come running back to you with arms wide open and all dewy eyed.

Some people come into our lives for a lifetime, others just sort of flit in and out. That's kind of how life works. Just because my life continued to go on, without you in it, simply means you weren't that big a part of it to begin with.

There's this old saying that goes 'you can't please all the people, all of the time', and really, who would want to. Making other people happy all the time is tiring - I have enough trouble keeping a two year old happy and entertained, I don't need to be responsible for your happiness as well.

So "friend" this is good bye and good luck. 


Sunday, March 10, 2013

Nailed It - "Lucky Clovers"

Let me prefice this one by saying I did a "Heart Box" for Valentine's Day that wound up, well, less a box of hearts and more a 'box of butts' (I put the hearts in upside down, so they wound up looking like little butts, not hearts - my MIL and I had a massive giggle fit over that one, let me tell you).

So, since I didn't display it, I didn't do a post on it, but as St. Patrick's Day looms closer, and I'm feeling a wee bit lucky, I decided to take my 'fail' and convert it into a 'win' (so to speak).

And this is what I got.

The 'Keep Calm' printable is from Pinterest - I went through
over 20 boards to find the original site - no such luck.
Cute huh?

I basically just took the idea I had for the "Butterfly Shadow Box" that I did for Little P's room and put a holiday twist on it. And seriously, you could do this for any holiday or even any season if you wanted to (bunnies for Easter, flowers for Spring, suns for Summer.... you get the idea).

So, quick breakdown of what I did.

Grabbed the shadow box (which I picked up on sale at Hobby Lobby, and these things are expensive, so snagging one for $10 was a total bargain), made sure it was the right way up (snicker) and measured the inside to work out how large the background needed to be.

I did this because I want it to be interchangeable for other occasions, and as the back of it is actually like a pincushion, you know, so you can use it for what it's supposed to be used for, and it's glued in there good and proper, I wanted to make it easy for me to be able to change it up.

So, shadow box and backgroud - check.

Picked up a four leaf clover punch from Michaels for $6 (woo hoo - gotta love their seasonal sales) and I had the scrap book paper already, so this was essentially a $6 craft (if you take out the $10 for the shadow box, since, I did, technically already have that on hand).

Punch out a bunch of shapes - I did five from each sheet, just so I could mix it up, and then just three of one pattern (one each for me, M and Little P).

Then grabbed my trusty adhesive dots (seriously, like the best $2 I have ever spent for crafting) and just eyeballed where they should go. I did corners first, and then just went from there.

And there you go.

One very easy way to add a little "Irish Love" to your house.

(You of course could go big scale (9 x 12, or even the 16 x 20) but I didn't want to dedicate THAT much room to a shadow box. I consider it more of an accent piece than an actual 'objet d'art'.)

And just because I know you are going to want to know what a 'box of butts' looks like, here you go:

See? Upside down.

One 'box of butts'

So my beautiful people, did I 'Nail It'?


Thursday, March 7, 2013

Little Girls LOVE Bows...

And ruffles. And pretty much anything frilly. With puppies or kittens or bunnies on them. And with sparkles. Lots and lots of sparkles.

You poor deluded fool.

There is a little girl that I see almost each day in the elevator at work, standing next to her Daddy, on their way to the on site child care that we have here.

And each time I see her, she looks like a bad 80's prom dress just exploded on her. This, my dear friends, is because her Daddy is under the misguided impression that this is how you dress a four year old girl. He's doing his very best, I know he is, but you can just tell that his little girl is so uncomfortable in what she is wearing. But she still smiles and holds her head up proudly, because it makes Daddy happy.

One day, I finally had the courage to ask her what her name was. 'Taylor' she said. 'I'm four' she added, as if I needed to know this so I wouldn't judge her on that days outfit (lots, and I mean lots, of ruffles, in a Pepto Bismol color with a HUGE pink bow on top of her head). I smiled at her, looked at her Daddy and asked if she picked out her outfits herself - because, you just know how admanant a little one can be when it comes to what they wear. 'No' he says, 'She let's me pick them out'. Ah, makes sense.

Over the next couple of weeks, I would see them in the elevator, her in that days outfit, holding on tightly to Daddy, and after a while we started having brief little snippets of conversation (as you do when it's a short ride and you don't want to travel in silence). I found out that he's a single parent (kind of figured that one out already), and that Grandpa lives with them (so no female presence in the's all starting to make sense now) and that she's getting ready to go to 'big kid' school this year. As we got to know each other a little better, I started to show them pictures of Little P. Yesterday I showed them what Little P wore while hanging out with M and Taylor practically squeeled with delight. 'Daddy!! She's got the pants I like" (pink jeans). There was a slight pause, and he asked her (completely seriously) 'You like pants?' - as if this were something completely foreign and new to him. 'Yes Daddy. I do.' I simply smiled at him, got off on my floor and wished him luck.
kids guitar music

Today, as I'm waiting for the elevator, a very bubbly and bouncy Taylor comes walking up, wearing pink jeans, white sneakers and a grey hoodie. She is quite literally grinning from ear to ear. 'Hi!' she says. 'Daddy took me shopping and I got PANTS!' And what do you know, Daddy has a big old grin on his face too. Apparently after work yesterday they went to the mall and tried on clothes and shoes and had a grand old time. As I was getting off at my floor, Taylor says 'bye' and as I turnaround to say 'bye' back, her Daddy mouths the words 'thank you'. With a nod and smile I leave them too it.

I believe that everybody needs a little help every now and then - even if they don't know it - and sometimes all it takes is just a gentle nudge in the right direction.

I'm looking forward to seeing what Taylor will be wearing tomorrow. I have no doubt it will be sans ruffles, bows and frills.

Till next time.


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

I want it NOW!!!

How do you teach a two year old the meaning of 'patience'?

The whole concept of 'having to wait' for something and not getting it immediately seems to have escaped Little P's learning curve. I'm not sure where she picked up the whole 'Veruca Salt - I want it now' business, as I know it's not something we do at home. Whenever it came from, I can tell you one thing - I'm not a huge fan of it, at all.

"Milk please. Milk now, please. Milk NOW!" Yup, and that's the short version of it. Normally it continues ad nausem till she gets what she wants, or I'm able to distract her long enough (look, something shiny) for her to forget what it was that she had to have right at this very moment.

I've gotten pretty good at intercepting her 'I want it now' routine - usually by singing 'The Wheels on the Bus' or 'Old McDonald', but sooner or later, she remembers that she was asking for something, and that Mommy hadn't given it to her....and the routine begins, refreshed, louder and much more demanding.

She has, as of yet, to throw herself on the floor in a fit because she hasn't gotten what she wants, and if we are lucky, we might just be able to bypass that all together, but I'm not holding my breath. And as a general rule, she only does it when it's just us. The whole 'do it while we are in public because they will be embarassed and give it to me to keep me quiet' deal has yet to hit her, and since we have been insanely lucky not to see this kind of behaviour in other kids, we may miss that one too. Hey, stranger things have happened.

But it's so tiring. I've dealt with demanding bosses before, but this is a whole new world of pain. AND I hear it only gets worse going into year three. *sigh* Wasn't it supposed to get easier as they got older, not harder?

So, here's to looking forward to a short period of 'demands' from our little boss, and fingers crossed, it's smooth sailing from here on out (although, we have battened down the hatches and stocked up the rations, just in case it gets rough).

Till next time.