10 Parenting Truths.

In parenting, there aren't many things you can completely count on. Kids have a magical way of taking your perfect, thought out plans and throwing them down the toilet (along with your tooth brush, wallet, and cell phone). However, I've compiled this list of Absolute Truths, if you will, that you can always rely on, every day, no matter what. Just to help make your life a bit easier.

1. The more time and money you spend on preparing a meal, the less likely your kids are to eat it. However, if you reach for that beautiful blue box of mac 'n cheese, they will proclaim it "the best dinner in the whole wide world!".

2. If you want to ensure an unusually long nap from your baby or toddler, just schedule someplace important to be. Before you know it, you'll be pacing back and forth in front of their door, jacket on, diaper bag packed, car running outside, waiting until the last possible second to wake them up, at which point they will throw a blessed fit because you dared to wake them up.

3. If you want to ensure an unusually short nap, get sick, have a migraine, or need to work from home. As with the above, they will throw a blessed fit because they didn't get enough rest. And that's undoubtedly your fault...surely they heard you breathing or blinking, or wiping your nose three rooms away.

4. The more "adult" beverages you consume during your annual date night with your spouse or significant other, the more times your kids will wake up that night. I actually believe it's a 1:1 ratio.

5. TMI warning on this one: If your cloth diaper wearing baby is a tad backed up, fear not. Simply do a load of diaper laundry. When everything is on the last spin cycle (when it's too late to throw in a dirty diaper), voila! Instant poop to end all poops.

6. If you have been trying to get your child to eat something (a fruit or veggie specifically), and week after week you end up tossing said food in the garbage because it spoils, stop buying it. That is when they will finally take an interest, and refuse to eat anything else because they "neeeeeeed" a pear.

7. The more money you spend on bottles, pacifiers, sippy cups, the less likely they are to take them. Bring them over a friend's house, where they get their hands on another kids bottle, pacifier, or sippy, and that is the one they will love and demand. Bonus points for it being discontinued or not sold online or in retail stores within a 583 mile radius.

8.  The more your resist a particular toy or kids TV show, the more they fall in love with it. I should have resisted books and quiet time. But nooooo, I fought SpongeBob and toy guns.

9. The second you sit down for the first time in 18 days, your children will begin fighting, will need a drink, a snack, a splinter pulled out of their foot. At some point, all soft sitting type surfaces are secretly implanted with a "mommy is trying to rest" alert chip. Unfortunately, having those surfaces reupholstered won't help. Neither will buying new. Or moving.

10. Just when you think your children can't be cuter and sweeter, and that you can't POSSIBLY love them any more...they can...and you do. Oh come on, you didn't think this would be all sarcasm, did you?? ;-)


"I'm just a mom..."

I couldn't believe how effortlessly those words rolled off my tongue. I had been chatting to someone as our kids played when she asked, "And what do you do?". "Right now, nothing...I'm just a mom", I replied. Then I went on about what I used to do until last April. And it wasn't until later that I started having a conversation with myself about how annoyed I was for giving that reply. Because I *know* the worth of a mother, it can't be measured by a pay stub or salary increase, or a Christmas bonus. I know better.

But lately I've been having a bit of a pity party. There are no invites sent out to this party. No balloons, no cake, and surely no presents. It's a party for one. And at this party I kick myself for being short with my kids, easily frustrated at the end of the day, too tired or too wound up to stop for 5 minutes and enjoy a "moment". Tomorrow will be better, I say. Then tomorrow comes and sometimes it's a wash, rinse, repeat. And I start the party all over again. So many days are good, though. No, not good, GREAT. Awesome, fun, filled with hugs and giggles and tickles and pure joy. But it takes just one bad day to feel like you're failing somehow.

So I'm trying to work on that, and lift myself up, and tell myself it's ok to have a bad day, and tomorrow WILL be better. I'm not failing. I'm human. And I'm a mom: a teacher, coach, cheerleader, nurse, dental assistant, nutritionist, tour guide, secretary, personal driver, event planner, security officer, chef, waiter, creative director, (toy) car mechanic, personal stylist, and more. And I'm still learning - about them, and about myself. I am a mom, and will forever wear that label proudly.

Week 4/52

Sunday, Jan. 29 - Ok so I am off by a day, shhhh don't tell anyone. We had just gotten to my sister's house, and I wanted to snap a picture while it was still light out and both boys were around. Neither of them were interested in taking a picture, they just wanted to go play with Max, the puppy.


Week 3/52

Saturday, Jan. 20 - Rocking, snuggling, and singing at bedtime.


Week 2/52

Sneaking this one in just in the nick of time...

 Saturday, Jan. 14 - Just took Anthony out of the bath. As you can see he was trying to squirm out of my arms (hence the blur). Matthew was still in the tub, as he always asks for "10 more minutes".


52 Weeks With My Boys.

Last year, a number of my wonderful mommy friends started a photo project/challenge. The premise was to take a picture a week, of mom and her kiddos. As a mom, I have hundreds (if not thousands) of pictures of my children. And a ton of them involve daddy. However, not many of them involve me; I'm usually the one behind the camera...not in front of it.

So I was determined to do this in 2012. A picture a week. Shouldn't be that hard to do, right? Here is my disclaimer (and you know I like disclaimers): I will do my best to get a picture of me with both boys. But we all know what happens when you plan on something with children. So, my ultimate goal is this...capture a moment in time, with yours truly and at least one of my offspring. I'm not promising frame quality shots here. Or even face shots. But I will be present in some way, shape, or form. The pictures will also include a little something about that day.

And with that, I give you Week 1: January 1-7, 2012.

 Tuesday, Jan. 3 - Typical non-school morning. The boys and I were playing cars. I was trying to snap a picture of the 3 of us, but it didn't work out. Matthew wanted a picture if him giving me 'buzi'.

 Friday, Jan. 6 - We had a bit of a warm streak. Matthew was at school, Anthony and I headed outside to take advantage of the 50 degree weather and work off some energy. He loves walking (or running) around the block, over and over and over...