5 Reasons Toddlers Will Survive the Zombie Apocolypse

CURLY BRACKETS TO

If you haven’t heard of the show “The Walking Dead” you live under a rock and won’t be reading this post anyway since I hear the WiFi is pretty spotty down there. If you are reading this post you’ve probably at least heard of the show. Maybe you’re a fan like I am and root for your fav characters to survive. They don’t all survive, however (cue millions of Beth tears). Do you know who would? Toddlers. They’re crafty little humans that get underestimated because of their size and tendency to poop their pants.

“But how?!” you ask. “They can barely speak and their biggest threat is being almost as cute as Norman Reedus!?”

They can exist on very little sleep: No walker is going to get them in the dead of night. They’ll be up every 1.5 hours and will wake for something as little as a floorboard creaking or someone peering into their crib to check on them. Sometimes they’ll just stay up most of the night on high alert, and still be awake enough the next day to refuse their nap.

Kids will eat anything (or exist on nothing at all): From stuff they found in the garbage can to leaves and dirt outside, kids will eat anything (except what you lovingly prepare for dinner). Starvation will never be a problem no matter how sparse the pickings because they have trained themselves to exist on 2 Goldfish Crackers and a sip of milk per day.

Oh, and everything they don’t eat is applied directly on their body for camouflage.

They can make a weapon out of anything: They have lots of practice hitting their siblings (or parents) with different toys to see which one leaves the biggest bump. Kids learn young how to position Lego to inflict the most pain and slow you down. If a walker actually catches up with them they’ll turn their super cute chubby toes into iron-like daggers and leave bruises on their thighs till they let them down. They’re at a stage where violence still doesn’t bother them so they’re ruthless.

They’re super good at being quiet when things are going down: You know when a toddler’s quiet that means something is afoot. They’re into SOMETHING. The dead are coming? You won’t hear a peep as they fashion a flaming spear out of a baton, fork and matches they found in Dad’s pocket.

This is also the trait that allows them to sneak up and scare the crap out of you. Good for ambushes.

They prefer to live in makeshift shelters and forts: Throw a blanket over a couple chairs and they’re ecstatic. Every night in the wilderness in a homemade tent or tree fort is gonna be like Christmas. They won’t ask to go traipsing through the forest to find better lodgings that are probably already occupied by the dead owners. No, they’ll be content to stay put and make another bedroom out of the bedding of anyone who bites the dust. Err…gets bit (same thing).

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I can’t wait to meet up with all you parents out there in the post apocalyptic world. The more toddlers we have together the safer we’ll be (that logic doesn’t work in ANY other situation). Which skills will your kiddo will bring to the gang?

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The Top 5 Places I Whip It Out

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You ever long for the good ol days? I think once in a while we all do. Children playing unattended in the neighborhood with their friends, no internet to distract you from your housework, high on socially acceptable Valium while drinking martini’s. Ahhh the good life.

I think if I was transported back in time though, I’d quickly become bored. There are so many situations in which I whip out my smartphone to make it more bearable. Now I’m down with no phones at the dinner table or when you’re hanging out with someone and can have an actual conversation without typing it. It’s also nice to just put the phone down and be present with the kids now and then, right? Sometimes I need an escape though and my smartphone comes in handy.

1) Breastfeeding Marathons: Thank the good Holy Banana for Netflix. There’s only so much quiet bonding I can do. If I have to feed someone every 1.5-2 hours I might as well take advantage of sitting down and binge watch Netflix’s latest crack series while doing so.

2) Public Restrooms: These are awkward places. We all have to use them at one time or another but most of us prefer when nobody is in the stall next to us. I like to browse Facebook while in there. It takes your mind off of how weird it is to use the bathroom a foot away from another person doing the same. (I do realize that you’re now going to possibly feel weird when you see me on Facebook because you’re wondering if I’m in the bathroom. I can live with that.)

3) Waiting Rooms: Waiting rooms freak me out. Especially hospital or clinic ones. We’re all there because we need to see the doctor for some ailment or another and I’m wondering if I talk to someone if I’m going to catch their sick on top of whatever sick I have. Plus I have a bit of social anxiety. So I browse things on my phone and make polite eye and a smile now and then. If I have the kids with me then it can be a savior for child-boredom. ABC Mouse ya’ll. It’s educational so minimal mom- guilt.

4) Bathtime: I have perfected the Mom Shower. In/out and wash/rinsed in about 5 minutes or less. My kids however, like to wallow. Usually they have bathtime when its not close enough to bedtime to put them down, but late enough in the day that I’m OVER.IT. So I sit on the floor close enough save anyone from drowning and mindlessly scroll while they act like they’re in a pool on Spring Break and have never seen water before. Its almost like I’m having “me” time.

5) In Bed: When you’re tired after a day of Momming, there’s nothing nicer than finally getting in bed and knowing you don’t have to do anything. Then, you grab the phone because you don’t want to just go to sleep at 8pm like a baby cause you’re an adult now and the evenings are time to do adulty things. So you check social media and chat a bit on Facebook and watch a few Youtube videos and zzzZZZ. Better than Ambien.

So the inevitable question is…
Where do YOU whip it out?!

The Big Box Mom’s Club

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We all love a good big box store. Be it Walmart, Target or Costco you have those aisles memorized and know exactly where to go to get what you want. You can find pretty much anything you need in one store, and even more stuff that you don’t. These shopping giants are highly appreciated and frequented by Moms who know the appeal of not having to usher kids in and out of multiple stores. On any given visit you’re sure to find:

The Solo Mom: She did it. She broke free for the highly coveted sacred hour of shopping sans kids.  You can tell she’s a Mom by the look of pure exhilaration on her face and and the way she keeps turning her head suddenly as if looking for a missing kid. Her cart is filled with necessities she forgets on most other trips because of whining to visit the toy aisles and a couple guilt-gifts for the kids to make up for being left at home.

The Birthday Party Mom: It’s 15 minutes before a birthday party for which she found a crumpled invite an hour ago in her kids backpack. Standing in the toy aisle with a frantic look in her eyes she scans the birthday boy’s Mom’s Facebook for any hints of toy obsessions the kid might have. A look of “screw it” flashes across her face as she grabs playdough and a a coloring book and beelines it to the gift wrapping aisle. Her child marches complacently beside her with a look of fear in his eyes and “If you make one wrong move in here you’re not going” and “I can’t believe you knew about this for 2 weeks” ringing in his ears.

The Social Butterfly Mom: This mom came for toilet paper but stayed for the party. She knows someone in every aisle and stops to talk to each and every one of them. This is her only adult interaction for the week and she’s going to make the most of it. The kids graze on food samples and play with toys she’ll later put back on the shelf while Mom tells the story about her sisters-husband’s-cousins divorce for the 4th time to the lady that works at the post office.  4 hours later at home, she realizes they’re still out of toilet paper and there’s $50 of small items the kids stashed in the diaper bag that she accidentally stole.

The Ultimate Sale Shopper Mom: She hits the discount racks HARD. There’s no way she’s fitting herself and 2 kids into that tiny-ass fitting room. If that medium doesn’t fit her 5 year old it’ll fit the baby in 4 years. When she finds something for herself she tries it on over her clothes standing in the aisle while giving side-eye to anyone who glances her way. There is a palatable “This one is MINE” vibe in the air. This mom is the one who holds up the line while the cashier has to price check half her stuff because “The Sign Said…”. Your aggravation gives way to awe when she walks out of the store with $400 worth of stuff for $75.

The Essentials Mom: She has the best intentions of a quick one-stop-shop. She marches through the aisles with determination and fresh-out-of-school children on short legs struggling to keep up behind her. Her list includes dinner ingredients and Popsicle sticks for a school project due tomorrow that she just heard about. “I just came in for 3 things!” you can hear her whisper in bewilderment, as she wheels an overflowing cart out the door.

The Unicorn To-Do List

The Unicorn To-Do List

There is a list of things, floating aimlessly in my head, that are just never going to happen. This list of “to-do” is about as mythical as a unicorn in the fact that it seems plausible, possible, but will never exist except in my imagination.  I’d need a fairy god-mother to accomplish all of this and they tell me those are mythical too. So is it not destined to be? Or should I keep on my magical quest to…

Do ALL The Laundry: Every single piece, folded and sorted into each person respective drawer.

Not. Gonna. Happen. By the time I give up for the day there’s still that weird stuff on the bottom of the laundry room floor like Elsa Costumes and baby bathing suits and then there’s the off season stuff that wasn’t as high on the priority list as underwear. Plus if you do get close to that shiny golden last load, your child will then decide to play dress up AND Spaghetti Restaurant at the same time. Boom! You’re back up to 3 loads.

Have the Whole House Clean & Tidy: All rooms, including the Laundry room. (You can see how this is failing already.)

This is probably possible if you do not have children. Or a husband. If you do, than you probably know no matter how clean and tidy it looks to guests, there’s one room upstairs with the door shut that you delegated the “clutter” room soon before every one arrived. You had the best intentions but by the time you got the kitchen cleaned the living room had took on all the new toys the kids found when you cleaned their rooms…and so you just scoop that shit into a laundry basket and hope nobody opens your bedroom door when they go to the bathroom. (Sidenote: Why do we worry about this? Who are we inviting over that snoops behind closed doors? Medicine cabinet maaaybee…but opening doors?)

Finishing My Book: I really want to read this trilogy before the movies become classics.

Yeah.freaking.right. Look, I have 2 kids and I KNOW they reach an age where they are a bit more independent and don’t rely on your for every single thing. For me, 0-2 has never been that age. There is so much crap going on in my head just trying to keep Kid 1 from maiming Kid 2 and Kid 2 from maiming herself (we’ve hit the biting and climbing stages at the same time, how’s that for fun?) that I’m lucky to read a few blog posts over the span of a day. They do finally go to bed but I’m so exhausted from Maim-Watch 2015 that I don’t want to use my brain for anything other than eating something without sharing or watching Netflix on my phone while lying in bed.

Freezer Meals: Life would be so much easier if I could just grab something and throw it in the crockpot every afternoon.

Wouldn’t it though?! This would require the chopping and preparing of many things, bagging it, labeling, and placing them all in the freezer. It all seems easy enough in a Pinterest Pin but I can’t tell you the last time I didn’t forget something at the store. I’d get started and need another ingredient (or 10). Plus the kids would surely need to eat at the exact moment they see/smell I’m making these meals and wouldn’t get that they’re not for today. “Really Mom? You’re cooking food and we can’t have any of it? We’re hungry today, not tomorrow.” So then I’d be making a regular meal along with the freezer meal. Also I’d eat half of everything before it even reached the bag.

So many Unicorns, so little time. What is on your Unicorn To-Do list?

To The BCW On His Birthday

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It’s the Bearded Computer Wizard’s Birthday!  (Aka my husband person)

So listen up, hubs.

I thought I’d take a minute to tell you Happy Birthday and I hope you have a great day.  I still enjoy spending time with you after multiple birthdays together which blows my mind. The only other person I’ve tolerated this long is my Mother and that’s partly because she will chase.me.down. (I’m kidding, Mom. I love you. BFF’s forever and all that.)

I also wanted to let you know the following things will happen/not happen today because its YOUR day.

-I’m sure you noticed you did not have to get up in the night with the baby.

-I will cook all the meals today.

-I will commission my mother to make you that Cappuccino Cheesecake you like so much.

-When you’re eating your dinner I will be the one to get up and get the kids drinks.

-No cleaning for you! I will do the housework today.

-I will give you pre-approved nerdy gifts that I ordered online.

…I just realized something.

It’s your birthday a LOT! Like, a good 360 days a year.

That’s just how special you are I guess!

Seriously though. I am grateful for all you do, and that you have allowed me to choose my role in the family. (Yes, I just thanked my husband for letting me be a SAHM. It’s a choice I wanted, we  made, and he supported so I am appreciative of his work to make that happen.)  I’m proud of how you support women’s choices and know you will help raise awesome girls.  I’m proud of you for shaping your life into something you wanted. It makes me happy that you support my “writing” and make sure I always have the best tools to do so.
There’s nobody else’s crap that I would want to put up with in the WHOLE WORLD. (Except maybe Thor or Khal Drogo or that guy from Mad Max: Fury Road, but I think you’re safe from their competition. Plus that would be like a “Brother Husband” situation cause I STILL couldn’t give you up.)

So Happy Birthday, and try not to exert yourself too much today. Its hard work growing that beard being so awesome.
The girls and I love you!

How Getting Fat Made Me A Better Person

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It took me about 15 years and 2 pregnancies to accept myself. Eating disorders, self hate, weight gain, and then the struggle to be healthy rather than skinny somehow molded me into a better person. I didn’t realize it was happening and something I should be grateful for until it was already here.  My extra weight brought something surprising with it.  Greater acceptance and the feeling of generally being a better person. Here is why:

I learned that I am worth more than my appearance. I am now aware that I have better characteristics than “I can fit into that” and “my ass looks better than hers”. Oh sure I would never have put someone else down to lift myself up…out loud. In my head, however, I would.  Now I not only loath the type of dialogue that I had with myself once upon a time but I will also call someone else out on it. If the only way you can lift yourself up is to put someone down you’re not gonna get very far before crashing.

I see beauty in diversity. I am still amazed that I could ever want to be like everyone else. There is no mold you could fit all my crazy into anyway so I embrace the fact that I, and other people, are different.

I stopped shaming myself and others for being different. If you’re broken or strong, fat or skinny, gay or straight I don’t care.  If you’re an asshole I definitely care. Nothing turns me off faster than people who shame others because they’re not the same or the status quo. I did that to myself for years, I don’t need to listen to someone else do it. (Pro Tip: People who are different/weird tend to be interesting and fun to hang out with. Also, pretty much everyone is weird in their own way you just have to find it.)

I am, in my own way, spreading the message of love and beauty instead of conformity. I’m proud to be part of the movement. I have hope for the future because of it. I think some day we just might be able to look at a magazine and see an array of faces and body types and  ethnicities and that is exciting!

I’m teaching my kids how to treat their selves and others. I’m aware of the dangers of throwing shade at oneself and am working hard to make sure health and acceptance never come in second to “what size are you?” or some other meaningless number. Instead of modeling a behavior that leads them to question their bodies or likes and dislikes I am showing them their preferences and appearance don’t play a part in their worth.

Please don’t ever feel you’re not enough or that you have to change something to be allowed to be happy right now. We’re all a little different… and a lot the same. Your insecurities are not a scale by which to measure your worth. Go forth and be your own different, weird, badass self!

8 Things To Start Doing Once The Kids Move Out

I love being a Mom. It is both the biggest joy and stress in my life and I wouldn’t have it any other way. There is however, this whole gaping area after all the “parenting” is done to think about. What will I do with all that time? I guess it’ll go a little something like this:

Have a clean house for more than 2 hours in a row.

Text them embarrassing Drunk-Mom pictures from vacations and pool days while they’re dealing with their own tiny minions.

Take a nice long shower. Alone. Without anyone asking “Are you done yet?”

Acquire one of these signs for when they’re bringing a significant other over to meet the parents for the first time.

Cook something delicious and decadent and not share any of it.

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Babysit their children and as a Grandma let them do all the things to which I told them “No” when they were children.

Always have to “stop by” the lingerie stores when we are shopping together to “pick up something for your father”. 

Sleep in till at least 9AM (or until they call and wake me to ask to borrow money).

Yeah, I think I may be okay. One finds ways to amuse ones self when left in the lurch by their offspring. How about you? What will you do when the kids are gone?

Pets vs Kids: 5 Reasons Why You Should Get A Dog Instead

I’m KIDDING! Settle down now. I love my kids! And my pets. In the “pet world” there are pet owners, then there are pets that own people. I like to think of myself as a mix of the former and latter. The third subgroup (who has taken a lot of heat from those who disagree) feel their pet gives them the right to claim that they A) Know what being a parent is like and B) Are fully prepared for impending parenthood based on the fact that they have said pet. I’m not here to bash those people (My cats are part of my family too!) I’m just gonna touch on why that’s a little true, and a lot wrong. After adding kids into the mix I’ve learned a few things…

1. Your pet, like a baby or child, may sometimes get up in the night to pee. The difference is the kiddo won’t wander outside, sniff a bush, do his or her business and then come back to bed with a simple “Come!” and fall asleep again. A baby will get up somewhere between 1 and infinite times per night to pee, poop, eat, cry, and fart aimlessly in the direction of your drooping eyelids. Sometimes they’ll just get up “because why not?”.

2. Pets and children are both messy. You probably know what its like to clean up furballs and “accidents” but until your pet grows opposable thumbs and applies your brand new Urban Decay eyeshadow pallet to every surface on their body with a vigor that rivals a deep tissues massage…well you don’t know the struggle (or the tears).

3. Looking after both your pet or a child can be demanding on your time. However, I have yet to hear of someone kenneling their kid and busting out of the house for some “me time” without the proper authorities being alerted. If I set my baby on her playmat and tell her “I’ll be home soon, wait right here!” she will not  wait right there, and I will not be home soon because I’ll no doubt be in jail. Instead of telling the baby “Good Boy!” I’ll be telling Sally from Cellblock C that I’m starting to think that “How to Train Your Dog for Dummies” wasn’t a “good enough” alternative to “What to Expect When You’re Expecting.”

4. Dogs and children both need to be fed, bathed, and groomed. The difference lies in the frequency and expectations of the human/pet. A dog, for example, will expect the same kind of food to appear in its bowl every day for years and each time will act like you just gave them a 10 course meal befitting a royal coronation dinner. A baby will absolutely-freaking-adore that lovingly prepared squash/carrot puree on Monday, hate it  with the fire of a thousand suns on Tuesday, and cry for then eat all the squash off of your plate on Wednesday. Don’t get me started on how they’ll look like something from The Walking Dead if you try that “once a month” doggie bath schedule. Brushing their hair? Not the leg-shaking good time your dog dog has. More like rafter-shaking cries to alert everyone in a 10 block radius that ponytails are indeed the devil’s preferred hairstyle.

5. You spend money on your pets just like you would a child. The average cost of raising a child to 18 years is said to be around $243,660 (I’d bet depending on school or special needs that could skyrocket) and by one vets calculation the cost of a dog (on the low end) over 14 years is $4,242.00. There’s a loooottttt of doggy sweaters and kitty manicures going on if your pet is costing you the same. (The downside to googling this stuff is now I’m thinking of all the nice horsies that wouldn’t’ talk back to me I could have if I didn’t have children.)

There is no doubt in my mind that pets are part of your (and my!) family. I don’t even argue against the fact that they can prepare you a little for what its like to be in charge of another life. I’m just saying until your pet not only poops in the house while your’re not looking, but then proceeds to go all Michelangelo and paints a mural on their 4 walls with the medium “turd”, lets just agree that the two are a bit different.

Silhouette Images via nobacks.comclipartbest.com/

Feel Good Friday

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After another week of depressing news, Kylie Jenner’s lips (she admitted she had fillers? Shocking.) and 274 000 articles about the birth of second Jesus  the royal baby I thought I’d fill your news feed with a quick little “Feel Good Friday”. I mean, you’re probably already feeling pretty great that for the next 2 days you don’t have to wear real pants, listen to your single/ or childless coworkers talk about getting drunk and sleeping in,  or go anywhere after the kids wake you up at the crack of “Oh-Hell-No” so this will just be icing on the sweet weekend cake. Here are some of the things that melted my icy, sarcasm blackened heart.

1. In a touching story and video that went viral on the internet recently, Huggies presented the story of Tatiana. Blind since 17, she was presented a 3D printed image of her babies face by her doctor at an ultrasound. I’ll admit this story had me emotional before I even pressed play on the video. It only got more “My eyes are sweating” from there. This is one to make you grateful for what you have, and aware that no matter what the situation or where we are in the world a mothers love is amazing.  You can catch the whole story and video here.

2. This is a celebrity trend I actually WANT to catch on. Forget the #kyliejennerchallenge (obv I’m a little disgusted by this one this week, lol). I want to see the people stepping up and calling each other out on the #stephancolbertchallenge. Find a large group of worthy people looking for funding and help every single one of them. Or find one person that needs something…anything and help make it happen.  In a “Hero of the Week” moment Stephan Colbert granted the wish of every single teacher in South Carolina asking for funding for projects on  the crowdfunding website donorschoose.org. You can read the whole story here. I have enjoyed him for years for his sarcastic wit and general funny but now?

I love you too, Stephan.

3. 80 year old Rosa Salgado shows us its never too late. Not only did she graduate with honors from a Florida college recently, she did it along side her grandsons. “I’m too tired after last nights bender to go to class” isn’t gonna cut it when your 80 old Grandma with a 3.8 average is banging on your door, textbooks in hand. Read her inspiring story here.

Well that’s it for the warm and fuzzies people. Keep it going and hug someone or call your mom or something. Help someone out this weekend! Teach the kids about the Pay it Forward movement. Have a great weekend!

Hey! If a dog can do it, so can you!