Monday, December 3, 2012


I have already confessed that I am not thrilled with Halloween, so I might as well admit something else that you may judge me for: I never plan on getting a dog. I think this admission surprised my husband, since I also happen to love dogs. I am especially fond of my parents’ adorable toy poodle, Winnie the Poodle, who I have had a special bond with ever since she decided to become my fervent protector during my first pregnancy, and has been loyal to me ever since.

Here is the pros/cons list that led me to this conclusion:

      ·         Having a consistently faithful and loving companion.

·         Someone to cuddle with on the couch when you’re watching Hart of Dixie and no one (i.e. your husband) else will go near you.

·         Pets teach children valuable lessons of responsibility and commitment.

·         Less need to drag out the dustbuster after your toddler finishes dinner; just let the dog have at the leftovers (there have been a few meals where I’ve considered whether moving would be easier than tackling the mess on the floor).

·         You are forced to get exercise every day even if you don’t want to leave the house.

·         Walking the dog allows you to meet neighbors and gives you an excuse to explore your neighborhood.


·         You have to wake up really early in the morning to care for them and pick up their poop.

 I didn’t always feel this way. About four years ago I asked a couple of close friends if they would accompany me to a local shelter to pick out a puppy for my husband’s upcoming birthday. We set a date to meet the following Saturday. That Friday I took a pregnancy test. Thirty seconds later I called my doctor to tell her that I was pregnant. She congratulated me and instructed me to set up an appointment.
“Okay. In the meantime, I just have a couple of quick questions. Is it bad that I ate lobster last week when I was in Maine? Have I been on my prenatal vitamins long enough? Is it normal to already feel queasy? Should I take a couple more tests just to make sure? What foods should I avoid? Is it crazy that I already have to pee a lot? I read on the internet that I should avoid hair dryers, is this true?!”

“You are not allowed to go on the internet until your next appointment,” my doctor informed me.
Suddenly, I remembered one more issue that needed to be addressed.

“I was planning on getting a dog for my husband’s birthday next week. Can I still go ahead and do that?” My doctor advised me to wait until after the pregnancy to make a purchase of this magnitude. After all, this was my first pregnancy and I had never owned a dog before. Who was I to argue?
And here we are, four years later, with two boys but still no dog. I have now had the privilege of being pooped on and peed on, I have braved potty training, I have endured the massive planning that goes into taking a vacation without your kids, and I have been repeatedly woken up at all hours of the night. The only thing that gets me through these obstacles is that it’s only temporary. My children will eventually both be potty trained (right?!), and perhaps in the near future will be able to entertain each other on a Saturday morning long enough to let their weary parents sleep in past 7am. Welcoming a dog to the family feels like it would be adding another child who remains a toddler forever.

Maybe one day I will change my mind. I doubt it, but it’s possible. Just don’t tell my children that. And definitely don’t tell my husband.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


...two beautiful sons who impress me each and every day with their intelligence, sensitivity, and sense of humor.

…the rare Sunday mornings that I have free to spend at spin class and the Farmer’s Market.

…the rare Sunday afternoons that I have free to spend cuddled up on the couch with a blanket, herbal tea and a good book.

…two phenomenal parents who I know I can always count on no matter what.

…a brother and sister who also happen to be incredible friends.


…Dinosaur Egg oatmeal, Dinosaur chicken fingers, Dinosaur fruit chews…etc.

…the fact that my older son has become pickier about food, but for some reason still gobbles up my salmon.

…the fact that my younger son still eats pretty much anything I give him without complaining.

...the Dunkin Donuts drive-thru

…Parenthood (the job)

Parenthood (the television show)

…a mother-in-law, father-in-law, two sisters-in-law and a brother-in-law who made me feel like part of the family pretty much the moment I met them.

…Date Night.

…Girl’s Night Out.

…Any Night Out.

…Lauren Graham.
…wonderful friends who keep me laughing no matter how tired or stressed I become.

…my husband, the most amazing life partner I could ever hope for.

 Happy Turkey Day!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Despite persistent weather reports that stressed the potential dangers of Hurricane Sandy, I never anticipated the overwhelming devastation and destruction that resulted from the brutal storm. For me, last week was a reminder of how life can change in an instant, and to never take what you have for granted. Since my children are too young to remember any of this, I decided to draft a letter to share a few other things I learned from the storm.

Dear Big Bro and Little Bro,
Take note of any advice your weathermen offer, especially if they repeat the same warnings over and over again for seven days straight.

Be persistent but patient if you are feeling ignored in the aftermath of a storm. There will be many people who are affected in ways both big and small, and while a few might not be pulling their weight in recovery efforts, most will be working around the clock to help and there will just not be enough hands to help everyone at once.
There will be a few select stories that the media will run in a continuous loop. These stories are important but don’t forget about those who may not be shown on television but are also in need of relief and donations.

Fill up the gas tank of your car before the storm arrives. Don’t question it, just trust me.
If you’re one of the few who didn’t lose power, don’t watch a show called Revolution. Don’t question it, just trust me.

If the storm happens around Halloween, expect trick-or-treating to be rescheduled nine times before it actually happens. Do not tell your three-year old that he will be going trick-or-treating until five minutes before you’re planning on leaving. Unless you want to disappoint your three-year old eight different times.
Make sure you always have a few good books and a flashlight by your nightstand.

Don’t underestimate how quickly Bruce Springsteen, Jon Bon Jovi and Billy Joel can pull together a benefit concert to help.
Get a land line in case you lose power.

If you have a massage scheduled the day before the biggest storm of the century is about to strike, you do not have to reschedule (even if you get a call from your grandmother telling you otherwise). But you do have to go to the store to stock up beforehand.
Don’t just stock up on food for your immediate family. Buy enough for your entire extended family plus any friends who may lose power. Also, always have enough peanut butter in the house. That will always be the first shelf emptied out in the supermarket before a storm.  

Don’t assume that Andy Cohen will have cancelled his live show just because there is a live hurricane outside his clubhouse.
If you lose faith, take a moment to look around you. You may be inspired, like I was, to witness people who are suffering take the time to assist those who have suffered even more.


Sunday, October 28, 2012


OnThursday morning I received a panicked call from my mom.

"You have to cancel your massage! Who gets a massage when the biggest storm of the century is coming?! This is not a joke!"

I did not think the storm was a joke, especially in light of the fact that last year's freak October storm had caused us to lose power for an entire week. But my husband had generously gotten me a gift certificate on our anniversary and in what ended up being a particularly hectic and stressful week, there was no way I was going to cancel. Besides, this was no ordinary massage; it was a special Raindance Massage Treatment.

On Friday I returned home to a message on my answering machine.

"Did you hear it has a name? Frankenstorm! Have you canceled your massage yet?"

Saturday morning arrived and when the phone rang I did not have to look at caller ID to know who was on the other end.

"You're not still planning on going to that massage, are you? You need to stock up on supplies. You have two children to think about!"

By now the news reports were getting me a bit panicked, so I decided that doing some last minute grocery shopping before the massage might not be such a bad idea. I headed to the supermarket and was greeted by hoards of people desperately filling up carts with soup cans, water, peanut butter and bread. I headed for the baby aisle to stock up on cereal.

"Excuse me," I said politely to a woman blocking my path.

"CAN'T YOU SEE THE STORE IS CROWDED!!!" yelled the crazy woman.

Finally, after navigating through the crowded (yes, I had noticed) store and waiting on an insanely long check-out line, I was on my way home. Already running late for the spa appointment, I rushed through the door and began unpacking, only to realize that two eggs had broken in the container. I left my husband with the mess, and rushed to my massage.

When I arrived at the spa I was whisked away to a serene, candlelit room where I was instructed to dip my feet in a warm, rose-infused bath and sip green tea while I waited for my masseuse. I tried to relax into the moment, but as I sipped my tea I couldn't help but reflect on the stressful events of the morning.

Why was that woman in the store so bitchy to me? Why wasn't I more careful with the eggs? Was I neglecting my children by getting a massage on the eve of FRANKENSTORM?!

My thoughts were interrupted by the masseuse entering the room.  As he worked out my knots, my troubles were soon behind me. Afterwards, I was led into the sauna and handed a glass of coconut juice. I took a taste of the refreshing concoction and was disappointed that I had neglected to stock up on coconut juice before the storm.

Then came the rain dance.

N.B. If you're searching for a spa treatment to help you forget about an impending hurricane, perhaps the Raindance Massage Treatment is not the best choice. By the time the fourth bucket of water had been poured over me I couldn't help but return to panicking about the impending storm. 

Rain dance aside, I left the massage reinvigorated. I called my mom on the way home and told her about my lovely afternoon at the spa.

"Oh honey, I'm so glad you went, you really deserved it!"

I arrived home and collapsed onto the couch. I wasn't (that) worried about losing power from the storm. My batteries had already been recharged.

***Please, everyone stay safe during the storm!***


Tuesday, October 16, 2012


Do the irritating Barney and Spongebob make anyone else nostalgic for shows from their own childhood? As a child of the 80’s, my list of favorites included Small Wonder, She-Ra Princess of Power, Punky Brewster, Pinwheel, The Magic Garden and Romper Room. While I am wholeheartedly in favor of limiting TV time for young kids, we all know that no matter how busy you keep your child, once in a while he/she is going to end up in front of that small screen. Below is a list of some current shows that you may enjoy watching with your own children.  

If you liked Mister Rogers Neighborhood, try Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood.

Was there anything more comforting as a child than hearing Mister Rogers invite you into his neighborhood? I remember being mesmerized simply watching him changing into his sneakers and sweater. PBS recently started airing their new show Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood, which features the offspring of the original characters, including four-year old Daniel Tiger. The new show lacks the soothing voice of Mister Rogers himself, but Daniel does sport a familiar red sweater. Parents are also treated to the original theme song to brighten up their day.

If you liked Fraggle Rock, try Yo Gabba Gabba.

When I was younger, if I wanted to “dance my cares away” the place to be was Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock. Similarly, Yo Gabba Gabba (Nick Jr.) also utilizes zany characters and fun music to impart simple life lessons of tolerance, patience and individuality. Yo Gabba Gabba has had its share of impressive musical guests, including Weezer, The Roots, and Jack Black; but truthfully, none of their musical numbers will ever compare to the catchy Fraggle Rock theme song.

If you liked Reading Rainbow, try Super Why!

Before heading out to the library, I always looked forward to hearing LaVar Burton’s suggestions of books that I should put on my reading list. While Reading Rainbow has been canceled, they now have a great new app for the iPad that allows children to “borrow” books with interactive features. Super Why! (also on PBS) is geared towards a younger audience and focuses more specifically on fairy tales, but it is just as successful at instilling a love of reading in children. But you don’t have to take my word for it…

If you liked The Cosby Show, try Little Bill.

Created by Bill Cosby himself, Little Bill (Nick Jr.) follows the adventures of an adorable five-year old boy growing up in Philadelphia with his older brother and sister, as well as two doting parents who give the Huxtables a run for their money for Parents of the Year. I’m just waiting for the Little Bill episode where the entire family sings a rendition of “Night Time is the Right Time” for their grandparents’ anniversary.

If you liked Inspector Gadget, try Special Agent Oso.

While Inspector Gadget had to fight off the evil, faceless Dr. Claw, the tasks that Special Agent Oso (Disney Jr.) has to tackle are a bit tamer (doing dishes, cleaning a room). Maybe the hapless Inspector Gadget would have fared better if his niece Penny had broken down every mission into “three simple steps” like Special Agent Oso. I am especially partial to Oso’s computerized assistant, Paw Pilot, but maybe that’s because I personally held on to my trusty Palm Pilot for a little too long.

If you liked Mr. Wizard’s World, try Sid the Science Kid.

If your child is starting to ask a lot of questions about how things work, Sid the Science Kid (PBS) will satisfy their curiosities with an exploration of a different science topic every episode. Sid is always on the search for answers and is helped along by his family, friends and his teacher. 

If you liked Today’s Special, try Doc McStuffins.

If you enjoy watching inanimate objects come to life, Doc McStuffins (Disney Jr.) is the perfect show for you. The Doc is in and her specialty is fixing broken toys. Her own toys come to life in her playhouse to help her solve medical mysteries. Frankly, I find most episodes to be more realistic and a lot more enjoyable than the recent seasons of Grey’s Anatomy.  

If you liked Sesame Street, try Sesame Street.

Thankfully, some things never change.

Do you think that today’s programs for children are better or worse than the ones we grew up with?

Monday, October 8, 2012


Halloween is fast-approaching, and I am ashamed to admit that I am less than thrilled.

Apparently, I’m the only one who isn’t looking forward to it. According to Hallmark, the three largest party days of the year are New Year’s Eve, Super Bowl Sunday and Halloween. When I read this I immediately wondered what this meant about me, since I’ve never been a huge fan of any of these events.
I actually have many fond memories from past New Year’s Eve celebrations, as I often end up spending it with good friends and fine food. I suppose it’s the days leading up to it that bother me. People are constantly inquiring what you have planned to commemorate the last day of the entire year. There is always the pressure to find a fabulous party and stay out as late as you can on what is routinely the coldest night of the year. Now that I have young children, my countdown to midnight usually happens in front of the television, reveling in the hilarious chemistry between Kathy and Anderson.

I only have one small grievance regarding Super Bowl Sunday, which is that it forces me to watch football. When I first met my husband, he astutely sensed that I was not the biggest sports fan, but he ended up duping me into taking an interest in March Madness by entering me into a pool. Am I the only one who finds even the Super Bowl pool to be boring? The few Super Bowl parties I have agreed to attend usually culminate with me sitting in the corner of a living room nodding off into my third bowl of chili.

And this brings me to Halloween. If I were to pinpoint when my dislike of Halloween began it would have to be in the third grade. Typically, an eight-year old girl might request to dress up as a princess, ballet dancer or a witch. When I was eight I informed my parents that I wanted to be a traffic light. To their credit, they quickly fashioned an amazing costume out of a big, painted cardboard box and some red, yellow, and green cellophane. I even had a flashlight that I could shine through the cellophane. I guess I was a little too excited to show off my costume at the all-school Halloween parade because I ended up tripping and falling. In front of the entire school. And in case you were wondering, attempting to get up while lying flat on the floor with arms and legs flailing through a cardboard box is about as difficult as you might imagine.

Of course, I now have to put aside my disdain for Halloween and try to make it as fun as possible for my two boys. I will invest in the bulk bags of miniature candy, spend time figuring out two adorable costumes, and help them make memories. And when they get older and they ask me to watch football on Super Bowl Sunday, I will dig up my traffic light cardboard box and hide.   


Monday, October 1, 2012


In the past few months my ability to accomplish the various tasks on my to-do list has changed dramatically. This is partly due to my older son giving up his naptime the same day we brought his Little Bro home from the hospital, and partly due to the amount of attention that his Little Bro demands. This leaves me with very small windows to tackle the things I wish to get done. Some days I achieve a lot and feel like a rock star, but there are also days when I feel triumphant for merely stealing away for a minute to haul the garbage can in from the curb.

I’ve been mulling over whether to start writing for some time now. The problem was that there never seemed to be any time. Recently, I made a crucial realization: this not having any time thing is not going to change in the foreseeable future. There’s no such thing as a sick day anymore, let alone lazy Sundays. Therefore, if I wanted to start writing I would have no choice but to schedule it into my calendar, right alongside the birthday parties, soccer practices and play-dates.

Once I committed to starting a blog, my next task was to come up with a theme. I was motivated to start losing weight, and resolved that I would write a blog about being a new mother who was trying to lose the baby fat. It would be called LOSING IT. After patting myself on the back for being so darn clever, I did a quick internet search to make sure it was not already taken. Oops. It appeared that Valerie Bertinelli and I shared a love for double entendre. After further reflection, I also realized that if I wrote about losing baby weight there would be an awful lot of pressure to actually lose baby weight. I quickly decided that my focus should be a little, umm...broader.
Next came the daunting task of crafting a memorable title. I must have come up with about 20 different title ideas, and every single one of them was already taken. I hadn’t realized just how many parent blogs there were out there. This made me stop and think whether I should even start a blog. Did I really have anything new to add to the blogosphere? As it turns out, a few of my readers have informed me that I’m the only one who has ever fallen off a bike in spin class, so apparently I do have a few original stories to share.

Still struggling to find a title, I started to think up word plays on movie titles. Citizen Mom? Apocalypse Mom? Dr. Strangemom? Psycho?  When that didn’t work I moved on to books. The Grapes of Mom? Mom-22? The Mom, The Witch and the Wardrobe? Eventually, I decided I would keep it simple. I planned on sharing stories from the trenches of motherhood, so why not just call it mom-fiction.
Sometimes I find myself with an entire hour to myself in front of the computer, but more often than not I have to find small time slots stolen in between feedings, playtime, and all of the other things on my to-do list. And if sometimes my garbage can has to remain on the curb a little longer than it should, so be it.


Sunday, September 23, 2012


Last Saturday afternoon I went to the mall to find a birthday present for my husband. I had about two hours to myself before I had to run home and feed the baby before bed. I was frantically hopping in and out of stores, desperate to find the perfect gift. Periodically, I would dip into a children’s store to pick up a couple of new outfits for my three-year old. I was thoroughly drained from a long day of soccer practice, apple picking, and chores. When I passed Brookstone I was very tempted to collapse into one of their inviting massage chairs. After an hour I paused to reassess which stores I would hit next.

“Would you like a sample, miss?” 

I turned around to find myself facing a fancy tea shop and saw a woman holding out little cups of steaming elixir.

 “Are you in a fruity or spicy cinnamon mood?”

Frankly, I had no idea what kind of mood I was in. I hadn’t thought much about myself all day. I had deliberated over the quickest approach to cleaning up my baby’s leaky diaper without missing too much of Big Bro’s soccer game. I had also worried about making sure Big Bro got his apple cider donut that was promised him. I had rushed to do the laundry and make some attempt at cleaning up the living room so that we could at least walk across the floor without tripping over ten different toys along the way. I had considered whether I had the spare time to make it to the dry cleaners or post office, and fretted about the fact that I should have gone to the supermarket to pick up some provisions for the week.

Now here I was being approached by a stranger trying to sell me some overpriced tea, and all I wanted to do was hug her. Someone actually cared what kind of mood I was in.

“Fruity.” It felt really good to say it out loud. As she handed me the miniature cup of tea I took a deep breath and exhaled the stresses from the day. 

“Does this come in tea bags?” I wanted this serene moment where my only focus was enjoying my 1 ½ sips of tea to last forever. As the woman began to offer her very detailed explanation as to why loose tea is preferable, I allowed myself to sink deeper into the moment. I wasn’t tending to anyone else’s needs or stressing about my to-do list, I was just focused on my fruity tea.

I decided to allow myself the remaining minutes I had left to focus on myself and ended up purchasing a couple of cute tops. I left the mall feeling rejuvenated, not from the tea but from taking a moment to check in with myself and what kind of mood I was in.

I just hope my husband appreciates the tea I bought him for his birthday this year.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Last week, my mom bought my son some Silly Putty, and I was so happy to see that he could derive enjoyment from such a simple toy. The Silly Putty didn’t talk to him, it didn’t move around the room, and it didn’t teach him how to count or spell. All he needed to have fun was a little imagination. I suddenly became nostalgic for other toys from my own childhood. Below are some of my favorites.

I may not be so great at spin class, but I was amazing at Mousercize. I loved putting on this record and dancing along to all of the songs. I think you can still purchase these songs in iTunes, but what’s the point if you don’t have the helpful guide book that came with the record to show you how to do all of the groovy moves?

Garbage Pail Kids
It’s wonderful how so many characters and toys created for children nowadays impart all sorts of valuable lessons about individuality, tolerance, and feelings. Garbage Pail Kids did the exact opposite and I collected them all. The best part was that every pack came with a stale, sugary piece of chewing gum that would help to loosen any teeth I had not yet lost.

Cabbage Patch Dolls
I’m pretty sure that Garbage Pail Kids were made to parody these dolls, although they really didn’t need much help to make them look disturbing. Each doll came with a birth certificate with the name of your doll. I think mine was named Cissy. I recently visited the American Girl store, and those are some beautiful dolls. Cabbage Patch Dolls? Not so much. But I still loved mine, which I guess you could say taught a valuable lesson in loving something no matter what it looks like.

All of the children’s apps I buy for my son have some sort of mathematical, verbal or cultural lesson incorporated into the game (or at least I tell myself that to justify the purchase). As far as I can remember, all of the Atari games involved hitting balls, eating dots, or digging holes. I didn’t learn a single thing from any of them, and they were all amazing. Joust, Centipede, Ms. Pac-Man, Dig-Dug, Asteroids, I loved them all.

I wasn’t the most artistically inclined child, so I mainly used those little plastic choking hazards to spell my name over and over again in bright lights. Apparently, they now make a Lite-Brite app for your iPhone. Lazy!

Speak & Spell
I think the voice from Speak & Spell was Siri’s grandfather, because they really sound alike. Seriously, is anyone else surprised that with all of the advances we have made in technology, we have made no improvements when it comes to creepy computerized voices?

What old school toys are you most nostalgic for?

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Murphy’s Mother’s Law

If you obsess over finding the perfect little suit for your infant’s first wedding invitation, he will end up pooping all over himself before the valet has even reached for your car key.

Even the most stable marriages will be tested by at least one leaky diaper incident that will almost lead to divorce.

Whether you are preparing a turkey sandwich or beef bourguignon, your child has an innate sense of when you are about to sit down to eat and will choose that very moment to wake from a nap.

The night that you tell your child that he has to go to bed the second his television show is over will be the same night that Nick Jr. decides to air an hour-long Fresh Beat Band movie.

No matter how annoying you find the Fresh Beat Band, you will find yourself alone one day and without thinking start humming “Go Bananas”.

If you spend time lovingly preparing a meal of breaded chicken cutlets or homemade mac and cheese your child will push his plate aside, insisting he wants “the real one, not the fake one”.

Those who assume that potty training will be much easier for them than it was for any of their friends will three months later find themselves still strategically placing towels on chairs and rugs around the house, praying that they only have to do two loads of laundry that day.

 The later your child falls asleep, the earlier he will wake up.

If you prevent your child from napping before a flight, he will still stay awake for the entire flight.

When you ask your husband to watch the screaming kids for five minutes while you step out to drop something off at UPS and instead sneak off like a fugitive to get frozen yogurt and retreat to the back corner of the store savoring each spoonful as slowly as you can and return home and concoct some lie about having trouble finding the right box at the UPS store, your neighbor will see you and mention bumping into you at the frozen yogurt shop in front of your husband the following week.

Pee, poop, vomit, and runny noses will suddenly not seem so gross to you, but watching the myriad of foods your child insists on dousing with ketchup on will make you gag.

No matter how adventurous a child starts out being with food, by 2 ½ they will end up requesting four meals: chicken fingers, mac and cheese, peanut butter and jelly and a bagel with cream cheese. And oddly in my son’s case, miso soup.

The only time your child will want to try anything new will be when you are eating it, and they insist they are starving and must have a bite.

The day that your child has his first Dum Dum lollipop will be the initiation of him begging you for a lollipop every hour, every day, for who knows how long.

There will always be someone out there voicing concerns over whether your child is hungry, eating too much, too cold, too hot, needs a nap, shouldn’t be kept on such a strict sleeping schedule, has too many toys, or shouldn’t be deprived of anything his little heart desires.  The more unsolicited advice you ignore, the happier you will be.

Monday, September 3, 2012


The other day I was on the phone with my mom and she asked what I had planned for the day.

“Well,” I replied. “I was going to do some straightening up but it’s such a nice day out that I think I’m going to take the kids to the playground instead.”

“Honey,” my mom responded, “I think it’s just wonderful how you don’t care what your house looks like!”

One might assume that I would be offended by that comment, but I actually took it as my mom meant it, as a compliment. Her point was that the house will always be there, but there are only so many beautiful summer mornings that I will have to spend with my two young children at the park.

Three years ago, my priorities might have been a little different. I think that especially with the first child it is natural to want to keep a perfect house. How dare anyone wear their filthy shoes inside the house where my beloved child crawls on the floor! Keep that dirty binky that just fell to the ground away from my child’s precious mouth! And the bottle of Purell kept handy for visitors meeting the baby for the first time was big enough to be seen from space.

After my first son was born, the living room was still a fairly presentable place to host guests. Skip to a few months later, and suddenly my living room had become a playroom and toys were everywhere. His little toy box was suddenly spilling over with trucks, cars, stuffed animals, puzzles, etc. and my son had a fun little habit of taking his entire toy box and tipping it upside down. Every ten minutes. He hasn’t really outgrown this habit and recently developed a new morning routine: about two minutes after I start my shower I hear him climbing out of bed, and around the time I am rinsing the shampoo out of my hair I hear a huge crash in the hallway.  No worries, he’s just dumped his entire box of trucks upside down, right outside of the sleeping baby’s room. By the time I’ve rinsed the conditioner out of my hair, there is usually at least one entire game of Memory and a puzzle dumped on top of the truck pile. And a crying baby on top of that.

Toys are not the only things that pile up in my house. Ever since I had my second son, I have worried whether my house has started to resemble an episode of Hoarders. There are piles everywhere: unread New York Times, old magazines, unopened mail, and preschool artwork that I cannot bring myself to get rid of. Then there are the piles of laundry that need to be tended to, not to mention the piles of dishes in the sink.

As my newborn grows older I find myself having a few minutes more to myself every day to chip away at these piles, and slowly my house is returning to its normal state. Soon, my children will not be begging me to eat the pretend meal they carefully prepared for me in their mini kitchen, or requesting that I read them the same book for the 11th time. And I know that it won’t be long before I am taking a shower and no longer hear the sounds of all of those trucks crashing onto the floor. And I will miss it. 

So I plan on going to the playground instead of tending to the piles of housework for as long as I can.

Monday, August 27, 2012


Lazy summer days are almost a thing of the past and fall will soon be upon us. For this mom that means just one thing…Fall TV!

With two young boys my nights are now filled with endless reminders to my three-year old that chicken can come in a form other than nugget, struggles to get him into the bath, then the inevitable arguments when it’s time to get out of the bath, requests to read Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site, followed by my son insisting on reading it again to me. Then we have to get the baby to sleep.

This routine usually leaves me about 20 minutes of free time before I collapse into bed, so that means that my DVR is always about to explode (right now my DVR is brimming with almost the entire season of The Newsroom and a couple of episodes of Friday Night Lights that I taped on ESPN Classic because I just can’t let it go). I decided to compile a list of must-see premieres for those who also have limited DVR space.
Here is the list of what I plan on watching this fall. I’m no expert, but I play one on TV…

Guys With Kids (NBC)
Premieres 9/12 at 8:30PM
Three thirty-something guys…with kids. Since Will Arnett is not one of the guys, this probably won’t be as good as Up All Night, but Jimmy Fallon is behind it so I’m semi-intrigued.

The Mindy Project (Fox)
Premieres 9/25 at 9:30PM
A successful OBGYN whose personal life is a mess. I have been a fan ever since I saw Mindy Kaling’s Off-Broadway play Matt and Ben. This will hopefully make up for the fact that The Office has gotten so bad.

Revolution (NBC)
Premieres 9/17 at 10:00PM
In a nutshell, the power goes out and no one seems to own a generator. Other than Fringe, J.J. Abrams has consistently let me down since Lost, but I am still a fan and will give any of his pilots a chance (except for the pilot from Lost because, well, you know…)

666 Park Avenue (ABC)
Premieres 9/30 at 10:00PM
A creepy tale about one of the scariest things known to man: Manhattan real estate. Terry O’Quinn is starring. See above.

Nashville (ABC)
Premieres 10/10 at 10:00PM
A country singer tries for a comeback. Honestly, I only want to watch this because Connie Britton is starring and I am loyal to Mrs. Coach Taylor but if this gives me the same nightmares that American Horror Story did, I will not be sticking around for very long.

Partners (CBS)
Premieres 9/24 at 8:30PM
A comedy based on the lives of creators David Kohan and Max Mutchnick (the creators of Will and Grace). Sounds cute and it has a fun cast.

Knots Landing revival
Ok, this doesn’t exist, but I got so excited hearing the opening credits of Dallas again this summer (growing up I always preferred Dallas to Sesame Street) that I wanted to pitch this idea to any television executives reading this blog.

Which new show are you most excited for?

Monday, August 20, 2012


Before I had children, Friday night usually meant meeting up with friends for drinks, trying a new neighborhood restaurant, or maybe seeing a movie. 

Last Friday night was spent at the supermarket.  

As I parked my car in the almost empty parking lot, I couldn’t help but feel a little sorry for myself that this was the way I had to begin my weekend. I headed into the store pouting, and decided that since I had some quiet time to myself I would at least try to unwind with some music. I put on my headphones and headed up the first aisle.

The first song that came on was Madonna’s “True Blue.” I was immediately brought back to my childhood, since this was the very first cassette tape I ever bought. As I headed up the fruit aisle, remembering that my son had demanded I bring home some watermelon, I felt like a kid again.

True Blue ended and the next track came on. Ok, Missy Elliott, if you insist, I will “Work It.” I headed down the cereal aisle with a little swagger in my step and pretended for a moment that I was out dancing with some college friends, not choosing whether to buy another box of Cheerios or treat my child to some Lucky Charms for a change.

Next came some Ani. I very quietly started singing the words to “Untouchable Face,” but soon realized that it’s pretty difficult to sing any Ani DiFranco song quietly. As I was humming along I also concluded that Ani is just not as much fun to sing when you’re happily married. I made a mental note to pick a fight with my husband when I got home and then put on Dilate.

As I continued down aisle 17 (as a City Girl it took me a while to adjust to a supermarket with more than five aisles but now I am very used to it) I realized that I was actually feeling more relaxed than I had in a while. It was nice to be out of the house and on my own for an hour, and even though I didn’t have a cocktail in my hand, I was starting to feel a little drunk from the freedom.

As I approached checkout, James Taylor came on. The secret of life is enjoying the passing of time. Some words of wisdom to end my evening with. Suddenly I was very at peace with the fact that I had spent my Friday night at the supermarket. True, I definitely do not have nearly as much free time as I used to, but life is still pretty good. I arrived home from the supermarket in a great mood, invigorated from the time alone. Then I made myself a cocktail. It was Friday night, after all.

Monday, August 13, 2012


When Hubby first brought up the idea of moving from The City to The Suburbs my initial response was, “How am I going to get to the store?” It really did not occur to me that I would want to drive to get my grocery shopping done. See, I’m a City Girl, and I was being asked to use a CAR to GO OUT. This was a completely foreign idea to me.

“You know,” said Hubby. “You may end up finding a car to be a convenience.”


As it turns out, a car can actually be a useful thing to have.

When my older son was born the car was the one place we could be sure he would fall asleep. I remember one particularly bad night early on when he wouldn’t stop crying and at about 3:00am Hubby went into his room; a few minutes later I heard the front door slam. In my sleepy state I momentarily wondered where they could possibly be going in the middle of the night, but then decided the answer could wait until morning and rolled over to go back to sleep. It turns out they had gone out for a drive around the block, and after circling around five times my son had finally fallen asleep. 

My car has also become somewhat of a sanctuary for me. When I need a break from dirty diapers and spit-up I get behind the wheel, pump up the music and head for the open road. Sure, most of the time I end up at Buy Buy Baby for some emergency Diaper Genie refills (seriously, how many of those things can a person go through in one month?), but along the way I get some much needed private time and return home rejuvenated.

Of course, my sanctuary is often invaded by two small children who need to be transported to music class, doctor appointments, the playground, etc. And the car does not seem to magically lull the Baby to sleep as it did for Big Bro. Is there anything more frustrating than hearing a baby wailing in the backseat when you are driving and cannot stop? And if the Baby does miraculously fall asleep, Big Bro will choose that moment to insist I turn off my “boring” music and turn on his CD. He has also become a little bit of a back-seat driver. ‘Mommy, there’s a red light up ahead. Mommy, watch out for the big truck. Mommy, there’s Old McDonald’s, can we stop for fries?”

I was not immediately sold on the idea of having a car, but now, just like my iPhone, DVR, and Trader Joe’s Unsweetened Green and White Iced Tea, it is a luxury I cannot imagine living without.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

The Weighting Game

A few weeks ago, Hubby and I were winding down after a long day visiting friends. “Wow,” said Hubby. “I think I lost a whole pants size today. Must be a little dehydrated from the heat.”

True, we had both spent the day in the hot sun, but we had also both enjoyed a hearty brunch and divulged in some tasty treats at a barbeque. My pants were actually feeling a little snug from the extra calories, but apparently all that my husband needed to do to go down a pants size was spend a few minutes SITTING in the sun. This news was a little disheartening to hear, especially for someone trying to shed some leftover baby weight. Getting a little “dehydrated” didn’t seem to have the same magical effect on me.
Other ways I wish I could lose weight, but have discovered do not work so well:
  • Filling up Pez dispensers.
  • Changing three diapers in less than 3 ½ minutes.
  • Taking a walk around the block with a toddler who stops every time we pass a fire hydrant, a garbage truck, or a leaf.
  • Frantically catching spit-up before it hits your shirt.
  • Mousercize.
Ways you can lose weight:
  • Diet.
  • Exercise.
A couple of weeks ago I decided my first attempt at real exercise would be going to my first spin class. After I fed the Baby and hugged Big Bro goodbye, I informed Hubby I was heading out.

“Good luck! I’m sure it will go just fine,” exclaimed Hubby.
I was a bit frightened. He had never wished me luck before hitting the gym or going for a run.

“It’s just that spin can be kind of intense. But I’m sure you’ll do great!”
Now I was flat-out scared, but it wasn’t so often that I had a free hour to myself so I decided not to overthink it and headed out.

Recently I’ve gotten into the bad habit of being 7 ½ minutes late to pretty much everything, so I was thrilled to arrive to class 10 minutes early. I paid my $20 and was told to grab water and a towel and choose a bike.
“Good luck!” exclaimed the man taking my money.

I decided to choose a bike in the middle row, that way I could easily keep my eye on the instructor but hopefully disappear into the crowd. The instructor approached me and asked if this was my first class. Maybe she could tell because while everyone else was busy warming up, I was carefully placing my towel on the machine and wondering how many bottles of Poland Spring I would have to drink before making my $20 back. I was shown how to add resistance to the bike and a couple of other little tricks and then the instructor wished me luck.
I wished people would stop doing that.

Class started and I had no idea what the big fuss was about. I was doing great! I marveled at the great shape I was in just three months after giving birth. I didn’t need anyone’s luck.
I was a spin goddess.

The instructor told us to add resistance to the bike. Maybe I didn’t add as much as some of the others in the class, reasoning that I was just a beginner and really should take it a little easy on myself. The instructor then told us to lift our butts off the seat for the uphill climb.
Then it happened. I fell off the bike.

I didn’t end up flat on my face. I just kind of slipped. I almost ran out of the studio. But I stayed. I looked around to see if anyone else had seen this.
“Look ahead. Don’t look at anything but your own bike.”

Was the instructor talking to me? It didn’t really matter. I listened and I didn’t look at anything but my own bike for the remainder of the class.
And I held on a little tighter when going uphill.