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May 2012
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July 2012

On Getting 611 Comments On The Huffington Post

A few weeks ago, the lovely and talented Lisa Belkin asked if she could republish my "20 Things Nobody Told Me About Little Boys" entry on The Huffington Post. I said sure! And damn! I probably should have spent more than 20 minutes on it. Another 10 minutes and I could have come up with at least 10 more Things Related To Pee, surely. Anyway. I said yes and then promptly forgot all about it. Occasionally I'd remember and go look for it, and eventually assumed it had perhaps appeared briefly and been met with a deafening army of crickets, then promptly pushed back into the morass of the HuffPo archives by the approximately 14 million things that get published there on a daily basis. Not so much. It actually didn't go live until Monday, and Lisa was kind enough to make sure it was treated nicely and highly visible.... Read more →

We met with a new child psychologist this morning. So I spent last night organizing and re-filing the mountains of old paperwork we've collected over the years. Old evaluations, assessments, treatment plans, progress reports, IEPs, re-evaluations, insurance rejections and appeals and God knows what else. Something old, something new, something photocopied, something blue. (The cup. The cup is blue. The cup is also full of vodka.) Reading through those old files is both oddly inspiring and completely masochistic. On the one hand, how far he's come! The things he says and does! The mind-boggling number of victories, both large and small (and medium and miniscule!), that we've celebrated since that fateful day when I took my non-verbal almost-two-year-old to the pediatrician. When that pediatrician cocked his head to the side and asked, "Does he walk like that a lot? On his toes?" He did it. We helped. I have no... Read more →

(This post is a work of hyperbole and wild exaggeration. Any resemblance to actual sponsored posts, living or dead, is purely coincidental. No animals were harmed in the making of this post, but one living room sofa was, kind of.) Step One: You get an email asking if you'd like your site included on a proposal for a sponsored campaign. Please to respond by EOD. (Or more accurately, you FIND an email asking if you'd like your site included on a proposal for a sponsored campaign...usually a few hours after the EOD deadline, dammit.) At this point the campaign is usually very far off ("timeframe is late Septemboctovemberish.") and the topic is impossibly vague and squishy-sounding, like: WRITE A POST ABOUT BEING A MOM. HEALTHY KIDS. RECYCLING. CLEANING PRODUCTS. SKRILLEX. Step Two: You of course reply in the affirmative. Yes! I absolutely have something to say about cheese/identity theft/breakfast cereal/dry-erase... Read more →

1) The shower. Okay, first of all, you need to know something about our Ocean City vacations. We stay for free with Jason's great-aunt and great-uncle, who retired there. Who are very nice and gracious and welcoming, but also COMPLETELY KIND OF TERRIFYING. I mean, first, they're in-laws. Distant in-laws. That's baseline intimidating already. And all my in-laws have this quiet, measured, Germanic stoicism about them, which is the complete opposite of my family. We're a bunch of hand-talking Irish drunks with voice immodulation syndrome. Plus...well, they are very particular and set-in-their-ways and they keep their condo impeccably clean and organized, having mastered the "living in small quarters" thing to an enviable degree. And then we show up. And basically wreak havoc and disaster all over the damn place. Every year the amount of STUFF we have to lug there grows exponentially. Not surprising, given that every other year we... Read more →

Sweet. Merciful. Sandy. Crap. Pine-Sol asked me to submit my best household-y tip — you know, like putting clear nail polish on panty hose runs or vinegar in milk when you're like, seven steps into a recipe before you realize you don't have any buttermilk — so I thought I'd go vacation-themed and share one that has been near and dear to my heart (and my kids' butts) quite a bit in the past month. Baby powder, y'all. Buy it, pack it, use it. Do NOT try to de-sand your sweet, gritty little hermit crabs without it. Sand will cling to wet, sunblock-y kids Like sand clings to wet, sunblock-y kids. It will multiply and hide in every possible crevice and thigh-fold, waiting for the perfect moment to come tumbling out in buckets from between their toes. the car, or your bed. Or on your in-law's couch. Powder... Read more →

We're away AGAIN this week. Visiting family in Ocean City. I know, right? I don't really know what we're thinking, taking all these exhaustifying vacations and creating preshus childhood memories and crap. Speaking of which, the following photo is quite possibly the best representation of life with three children I have ever managed to take. And quite possibly just the greatest photo ever, flat-out: Not to oversell it, or anything. But come on. As sybdix commented (when I posted this on Instagram), this is life with three kids: Carrying one, helping another and trying not to step on the third. Yes, exactly. And any day when you manage to not drop and/or step on anyone is a raging success. The teaching/helping step is optional. Posting this week shall be light yet not-completely-non-existent. (But completely-over-hyphenated-as-per-usual.) I'm taking the week off from Mamapop, but don't let that stop you from reading all... Read more →

So you probably thought that since we were en route to Aruba on Ike's first birthday proper, you were going to be spared the excruciatingly boring "Baby's First Cupcake" photo essay, aka Why Do Parents Think It Is Cute To Post Pictures Of Kids With Poop-Colored Schmutz On Their Faces. BISH, PLZ. It's like you don't know me at all. I am a slave to tradition. Or maybe it's just reruns, given that my children are all soo eerily similar-looking that I could probably post pictures of any of them and be all, "Here! It's Baby Ike! Kinda. It's a blondish round boy baby. Gimme a break, I'm tired." Baby Ike's first chocolate cupcake experience started out predictably enough, with great dramatic flourish: Followed quickly with that moment of ZOMG THIS FEELS AMAZING IN MY MOUTHHOLE: And then the aborable scrunchy-face that results when you are unable to just unhinge... Read more →

At the airport: On the plane: At the dinner table, night #1: At the lunch table, day #2: At the beach: At the beach: At the beach: On the bus back from De Palm Island (home of the water slides): (Not pictured: Ezra, Ike and Mama similarly tanked out in the back row.) At the dinner table, night #3: (TRIFECTA ACHIEVED.) In the crib: In the bed: (More photos at the Amalah's West blog here and here.) Read more →

SHUT UP NAPKIN YOU ARE DRUNK. Noah graduated from kindergarten yesterday. My god. At last year's preschool graduation "ceremony," he threw a fit about the hats and tossed his certificate on the floor in protest just seconds after receiving it. This year, I left with video footage of him holding hands with his classmates while singing a song ("First Grade, First Grade" sung to the tune of "New York, New York"), complete with choreography and a dramatic bow at the end. There are still issues, yes. We are still struggling with some things and will be taking steps this summer to deal with those things (anxiety, attention, self-esteem, etc.), lest anyone reading these last couple entries think I'm like, "ANNNNNNNDDDD CURED! All done, that's that." Noah remains a bit of a tough nut in some respects, but then in others.... Well, he's just another kid in the big ol' general... Read more →

Once upon a time, I was the mother of a little boy who was scared of the bathtub. Who was scared of so, so many things. He wanted to be brave. He tried to be brave. But when your brain sends you into fight-or-flight mode over the sound of a nearby lawnmower, or the feel of grass on your bare feet, it's hard to brave. It's hard to try new things when you can't process them, when you can't articulate what you're even afraid of, when you can't work those new things out to their logical conclusion. Even when the logical conclusion is: This is supposed to be fun, dammit. "I know what that is!" he said, pointing at the rental snorkel gear. "It lets you breathe underwater! Can I try it?" Uhh. Okay? Sure. Yes. The thing is, if we'd asked or offered, he probably would have said "NO."... Read more →