Gratitude for the Preschool Set

Nov 11, 2015 by

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love having a holiday with no obligation to buy anything, delicious food everywhere, and plenty of opportunities to give back to those in need. Plus, it celebrates my favorite season! It just can’t get better than that. I’ve noticed the “Christmas Creep”, as I like to call it, seems to get stronger each year. The marketing of Christmas in stores and malls seems to creep into the fall earlier and earlier each year. My kids are thrilled to see Santa appear in our local mall, and I’ve enjoyed shopping some super early holiday sales this year, but I don’t want my children to overlook Thanksgiving as simply the “precursor to Santa”. It’s hard to compete with the Big Guy in Red handing out candy canes on November 5th!

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Fear not! They ARE paying attention!

Oct 28, 2015 by

Yesterday, while rinsing out the recyclables, I sliced my hand open pretty badly on a chipped glass jar. Now, you’d think after giving birth to two nearly 9 pound babies, a little blood wouldn’t affect me, but you’d be wrong. I’m a fainter, and I knew I needed to go sit down at least until the bleeding stopped. My two sons, ages 4 and 7, were sitting at the table working on an art project when it happened. I’ve spent every second of the past seven years being a mom. Every cut, bruise, headache, upset stomach, etc. that my children faced automatically became my malady, too. I’m used to being the one to take charge and swoop in to save my kids when they’re hurt or sick, and I’ve gotten pretty used to putting on a calm, brave face for them whenever I’m unwell.

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Holiday Gratitude for Kids

Oct 14, 2015 by

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I’ll be the one to go there: the holiday season is creeping up on us. It’s on the horizon, folks. Our local grocery store’s “seasonal aisle” looks like the next three months are closing in over us all, half lined with candy corn and half with fake pine scented candles and Santa Clause window clings, with turkey-adorned paper goods sprinkled throughout. It’s a bit overwhelming.

I struggle with the holiday season every year. I love seeing it thorough my children’s eyes, and I love the crafts, baking, and music. But I hate the commercial side of it. I’m a full-on Grinch when it comes to that side of things!

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We Broke All The Rules: Married with Kids

Sep 30, 2015 by

Out without kids? Almost never happens!

Out without kids? Almost never happens!

I never fully appreciated how much the general public feels they may comment freely on your personal life and choices until I became a parent. As anyone with kids has probably learned, everyone seems to have tips to share, even if they’re unsolicited: sleep, feeding, dressing, childcare etc…the list goes on. I can tune most of it out, but one that always bothered me was hearing how I should approach my marriage after kids. People I was barely acquaintances with, articles, books, etc. all felt the need to deliver the message that my marriage should come before my children or it was doomed to fail. Lack of “date nights” and babies sleeping in my bed were surely the death knell for us as a couple, so watch out! Don’t let the kids divide you! “Don’t forget that you were his wife before you were their mother,” a woman once told me.

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True Confession: My kids never slept in a crib

Sep 16, 2015 by

There is a part of my parenting that, until recently, I felt terrible about: my children never slept in cribs. I’m sure some of you, possibly most of you, are horrified by this. I honestly don’t even know how it happened. They are great sleepers now, and my younger son has generally been a great sleeper since he was brand new, but cribs just…never happened somehow. Let me explain.

With both my sons, I nursed exclusively and never pumped. This was partly due to laziness; I hated pumping with a passion, and since I was in graduate school and primarily at home, I didn’t see the reason to suffer though it. A side effect of this was that I was always on-call as the food source, 24/7. My pump-hatred unfortunately meant my husband could never feed our infants. My first son was a difficult, colicky baby who wanted to nurse constantly. It wasn’t long before I gave up on the bassinet in my room and co-slept to make the nighttime feedings easier and allow everyone some sleep. When he reached 10 months or so, co-sleeping was no longer working out. He was moving more, and I was waking up constantly when he would re-settle himself. We tried the crib. And tried. And tried. I tried every trick I’d read about: letting him self-settle (which happened exactly zero times and gave me endless hours of anxiety), patting him to sleep, cry-it-out extinction method, white noise…you name it, I probably tried it. I was desperate for sleep. Finally, we figured out what worked for us: a floor bed.

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