Mommy Versus The Crayon

crayonsTo make a long story short, I lose. There. I just blew the ending for you. You’re welcome.

As you can imagine, my kiddos got a hold of the crayons and found some serious wall space. Yep, they drew all over the wall upstairs in the playroom. Oh my, what a mess.

I know it’s not a huge surprise as these things happen with little kids and crayons all of the time. I guess I’m just surprised because I mistakenly thought we had made it through that wall-scribbling era without a problem.

Nope, they just waited and waited until the time was right. Luckily, one of the drawings was a huge jet that started at one end of the wall and went all the way to other end. And it’s magenta! What fun. All I can say is I love my Clorox Wipes more than ever.

My Five Mommy Must-Haves

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Before I had children, I imagined the products I couldn’t live without. A magnificent pram with gorgeous white fluffy linens, a Baby Bjorn that would be glued to my chest, a designer diaper bag with perfectly sized pockets and so on. Fast forward to five years later and the reality of that list is laughable. (Aside from A-list celebs living in New York, who buys prams anyway?)

My list is nothing shocking or brand new that will blow you away. It’s not an “ah-ha” moment. “My goodness, how did I ever live without that?” But it’s real and it’s mine. (Now there are a few exceptions. I did not list my Blackberry because a cell phone is too obvious, nor did I list my iPod or digital camera for the same reason.) I welcome other moms to chime in and let me know what you can’t live without.

#1 – CHI Flat Iron
If my CHI breaks, I buy a new one that day. I don’t shop price or go without it. It MUST be replaced instantly. That is how much I love my CHI. This is the definition of brand loyalty. As I’ve said before, I have no idea how I ever looked decent without this thing. Maybe I didn’t have kids and I could spend time primping and properly applying makeup with brushes. Well, those days are long gone.

#2 – Clorox Wipes
I love to clean with bleach that doesn’t smell like bleach. That being said, I’m addicted to Clorox Wipes. I could use one canister in a week if the mood strikes. I am actually sad when I reach the last wipe. Yes, it’s highly toxic and that’s what makes it work. Duh…

#3 – Starbucks VIA
For instant coffee fans like myself, Starbucks VIA is a definite must-have. I am so in love with these tiny packets of joy, it’s quite pathetic. Who has time for a pot of coffee to brew? I want my steaming hot caffeine as fast as scientifically possible. I rank this item right up there with toilet paper and mascara.

#4 – Pampers Cruisers
People say all diapers are the same. Those people are smoking crack. All diapers are NOT the same and I think Pampers Cruisers are the best EVER. I will not allow any other diaper brand near my child. Both of my children have used these and we have experienced no leaks, no mess, no falling off, no droopy butt, etc. If a teacher accidentally puts the wrong diaper on my child, I’m totally upset. How. Dare. You.

#5 – Lip Venom
Nothing says you look pretty like painful lip gloss. I’ve been using this stuff for years and I’ve tried a zillion other lip glosses too. Lip Venom by DuWop is the best plumping lip gloss by a landslide. You have to get used to the stinging, hot sensation and when you do, it’s incredible. Warning: Don’t apply Lip Venom and drink a hot cup of tea or coffee. Your face may explode. Now that’s plump!

P.S. MommyQ does not get paid by the companies I blog about. I am not trying to sell the products I mention, nor am I officially endorsing them. These are just my opinions and I like to give them away for FREE. Awe, I’m so sweet.

Parenting Advice: Ignorance Is Bliss

In the chaotic day-to-day life we lead, time gets away from us. As children, time seemed like the one thing we always had to spare. Growing old was never a reality. There would always be plenty of time to do this or finish that or wait for something new.

It’s funny how becoming a parent forever changes your perspective of time. During pregnancy you’re constantly anticipating the next stage. When am I going to start showing? When is the baby going to start kicking?  When is my water going to break? Nine months would have seemed like a lifetime when we were small. An eternity, in fact.

The reality is nine months blow by so incredibly fast, it seems like a cruel joke. The first birthdays are fifth birthdays. Our little infants are big kids. The bumper pads, onesies and burp cloths we couldn’t wait to buy have long since been packed away and are now stored neatly in the closet in a dusty box. From rolling over to crawling to walking, we’ve been there for the milestones and the victories.  The sweet voices that once called out, “mama” are now speaking to us as if they were already adults.

I’m often asked to give advice to new parents, so my advice is as follows – embrace the moments life gives you and squeeze them for all they’re worth. Forget about the reality of time. Don’t listen the people who say,”they’ll be grown up before you know it.” Pretend you’re a kid again and live in the moment. Stop looking for the next distraction and allow yourself the freedom to indulge in complete and utter ignorance when it comes to time. There may not be enough of it, but you can certainly learn how to make it last. 🙂

Are We Ever Genuinely Happy for Someone Else’s Child?

I will call this post a ‘Mommy Moment’ and you can decide if you agree or not…

The other day I was at a store and overhead a little toddler counting. She had beautiful flawless skin, big bouncy curls and expressive brown eyes. She was adorable! She counted to 20…then to 30…and finally stopped at 50. Her mom beamed and she smiled at me when she was finished because she knew she had a small audience. Amazed, I asked her mother how old she was. She was three and a half. “Good job,” I said enthusiastically. I was lying.

My mind immediately started racing. Was this normal? Can all kids her age count to 50? Are my young children on track? Is she ahead of the curve? Are my kids behind it? Thoughts were racing through my head and I wanted a computer so I could Google it until my heart was content.

Luckily, the non-mom side of my brain kicked in and squelched the mom racket. The fact that this little girl could count had nothing to do with me or my children. This was someone else’s moment, not mine. I realized how easy it is and how nature it feels to be competitive with other children. Which makes me wonder, are other parents ever genuinely happy for someone else’s child? I sure hope so. After reflecting on my actions, I’d like to congratulate that bubbly little girl on her impressive counting skills. She deserves it.

Ten Tips for New Moms

storkThe day that stork finally delivers your baby, is quite exciting. It can also be rather overwhelming to suddenly have a newborn and find yourself stuck in the hospital and be in pain.  Here are a few tips to think about before the big day arrives. Keep in mind, this is based on my personal experience and every mom might not agree.

1. – Fill out hospital paperwork prior to due date. Most hospitals have a packet for expecting moms. Do yourself a favor and fill out all of this info weeks before you’re due. You do not want to be in labor and have to deal with it. They also ask for data you probably don’t know off the top of your head. Plan ahead!

2. – Pack your bag with care. Take the time to shop for maternity pajamas. You will be living in these for a while and if you’re nursing, it is so much easier with pjs made especially for nursing moms. You might not want to get pajamas with pants or shorts because the waistband might be uncomfy if you have a c-section. Pack shampoo, conditioner, magazines, glasses (if you wear contacts), toothbrush, toothpaste, mouth wash, hair dryer, etc. The hospital is not a Four Seasons.

3. – You will leave the hospital fat! You won’t be fitting in your skinny jeans two days after delivery so pack maternity clothes to wear home. The softer and more comfy, the better. You might also want to avoid the high heels for a while too, Mrs. Fashionista. Falling down after having a baby would be a bad thing. Pack flats!

4. Grab those diapers. Look, you paid for that lovely hospital stay and diapers are included. If there are extra ones in your room, you own them so take them home with you. If you have a boy, you want to grab some extra gauze pads for the circumcision. Oh, don’t forget to take home the ‘boy shorts’ they give you, mom. You will really like having extras for the first week or two after delivery.

5. Write down when you take your pain medicine. The biggest mistake you can make after having a baby is getting behind on your pain medication. It’s much easier to keep the pain under control if you take it every four hours. If you think you feel okay and wait 6 or 7 hours, it will most certainly catch up with you. And it will hurt! Don’t trust that the nurses will keep you on schedule. Write. It. Down. And buzz the nurse about 15-20 minutes prior to when you need to take the medicine because sometimes they don’t get to you right away.

6. Ditch the jewels. Don’t wear all of your expensive jewelry to the hospital. There is no need for it and they will usually make you take it off anyway. If you like it, keep it at home. Besides, your puffy fingers might appreciate a break from the tight wedding ring. And yes, they will go back to their normal size. So will your ankles.

7. Ask questions! If you don’t understand something your nurse tells you, ask her questions. And if you don’t like your nurse, ask for a different one. I’ve had some wonderful nurses and I’ve had some horrible ones. You will probably have a bunch of different ones during your hospital stay, so don’t get too attached to one. Nothing says “I Love You” like your husband telling off your nurse because she has an attitude problem.

8. Take notes. It may sound silly, but if your doctor or pediatrician tells you certain things and you want to remember exactly what was said, write it all down. Actually, tell your hubby or a family member to take notes. There is so much going on and mom is usually pretty groggy, so it doesn’t hurt to jot things down.

9. Use the nursery at night. It may be scary to give your brand new baby to strangers, but take advantage of the nursery. Your baby will be in great hands and you will get some rest. Keep the baby with your during the day and send him or her to the nursery at night. New moms need lots of rest and you will not get that rest once you leave the hospital.

10. It’s okay to be scared. As your hospital stay comes to an end and you’re putting your baby in the infant car seat for the trip home, you might freak out. The car ride suddenly becomes scary and the realization that you’re on your own is powerful. Don’t worry. Being a first-time parent is scary. Rely on your friends who have children or other family members for support. The good part is when the second or third baby arrives, you’re already an expert.

Happy deliveries!

Celeb Gossip: Must-Have Hairdo Tops $5k B-Day Cake

It’s been a while since I dished on celebrities and that makes me frowny face. It seems that any spare time I have to watch E! or flip happily through the pages of People are long gone. Between life as a mom and wifey, work, blogging and running some kind of weirdo cat sanctuary, my know-it-all-ness about vapid celebrity factoids has deteriorated. Well, that’s all about to change as I take you on a wild ride through haircuts, blah, blowouts and babies.

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Jon & Kate Plus 8 – I’m sorry, who? I can’t even speak intelligently about this potentially splitting duo with ocho kidlets, because I’ve never watched the show. I have heard that Kate Gosselin has been quoted a bunch because normal women like us (and her) have been requesting her haircut. Not sure if that’s true or not, but Kate needs to walk in Jennifer Aniston’s footsteps on this one and turn the whole haircut craze into pure gold. It’s spiky, soft, dark, light, long and short all at once. Come on, what’s more fun than a bi-polar hairdo?

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Jessica Simpson’s Reality TV Show – I’m afraid this one won’t be half as entertaining as Newlyweds, which spawned some of her greatest one-liners ever. “Sorry, I don’t eat buffalo.”  This show is about the importance of what’s on the inside as opposed to being judged on outer beauty. No offense, but we all know what’s on the inside – gross-looking, stinky, icky organs and guts. Jess, we’d rather watch you pronounce platypus.

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Suri’s B-Day Party – TomKat spent about $100k on Suri’s birthday party. The cake alone was $5k and the catering bill was about $45k. Surprised? Anyone? Anyone?  I guess when you have all the money you could ever want from doing movies with a chip on your shoulder and at least one solo running sequence, you can throw a bash like this for your toddler. It will be awesome to see what Suri’s sweet sixteen party will be like. Think about it. If you have to outdo yourself every year with something more extravagant than the previous year, let’s say you have to spend $10k more per year. If my math is correct, by the age of 16 her parties will cost around $240k. And if you nodded in agreement with anything in this paragraph, you need to get help. Seriously, there are clean padded cells waiting for your arrival.

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Adriana Lima Gets Fat – The beautiful Brazilian supermodel is expecting her first baby this winter. You’re about to meet the real Mother Nature, Ms. Secret, and she isn’t all that fond of bodies that can rock skimpy bikinis and prance around in a confident non-jiggling way. Say goodbye to fruits & veggies, and say hello to your new diet, muffin tops!

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Melissa Joan Hart Gets Thin – I am so tired of trying to keep track of who is fat and who is thin. Why can’t celebs just pick a size and stick with it! It would be so considerate to the rest of us. If you’ve been thin for a long time like Nicole Ritchie or Kelly Ripa, you will be dubbed as “thin” forever, even if you gain like 20 pounds.  Anyway, Melissa decided to lose her baby weight and People thought, “Hmmm, photographing a bikini-clad celebrity in a before-and-after weight loss story, what a unique idea!”

Mother’s Day is Almost Here, So Gimme!

If I lived a crazy reality where I could decorate things exactly how I wanted…big fluffy cream-colored sofas with huge white suede pillows and white rugs and I would always wear white like Dianne Keaton or Barbra Streisand…but minus the goofy gloves.  Anyway, if my life were glitz and glam instead of structured and functional, I would ask for these oddly wonderful treats for Mother’s Day.

They may be created for kids or moms who have the same taste as kids – either way, I just love Zid Zid Kids. I think the metallic fabric is so original and fun, it’s impossible not to smile when you see these things. And who doesn’t love a poof? If you don’t, you’re just not human. And who doesn’t need more elephants in their life? I know I could use two or ten.

Gimme Bookends!

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Gimme Cushions!

zidzidGimme an Elephant!

zidzid3All of these things would be so much fun to get as gifts for ME. Yes, me. Although I wouldn’t order my elephant with that little boy because I don’t really need another one of those! So, Mr. Q., if you’re reading this (and I know you aren’t), here are three cool things you can get me for Mom’s Day that would make me smile.