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  • Some Days | Thu, 20 Sep 2018 20:52:53 +0000

    Some days I feel as if I can do it all. Make nutritional meals, stop and take the time to explain, play, and comfort my kids when they need me. I can dress them in matching outfits, brush hair and teeth, remember their favorite stuffed animals for the car rides—switch the laundry before leaving the house, write, pay a bill, all while growing a human. I climb into bed that night content with my efforts and award myself with an internal high-five and gold star for excellence in all-things adulting.

    I wake up the next day and feel zero motivation for the grind. Suddenly I am uninspired—I cannot possibly apply another band-aid to factious boo-boos and I begrudge that my life has come down to loading and unloading a dishwasher while listening to another song from Frozen. No, I don’t want to build a snowman.

    I’m amazed by the polar shift in my attitude. I chose this life and sometimes I am so grateful it is hard to breathe. Sometimes I am so overwhelmed it is hard to breathe. So let’s just breathe. Unfortunately, there are no trophies for “successfully” running errands with 2.55 kids since your decision to let both kids steer their own mini shopping carts in Trader Joe’s while picking out food items, could be another mother’s version of hellish-chaos in the form of herding cats. The barometer of success, I believe should be measured by the happiness of your child. Since this is their season, their happiness could also be yours. Never mind the meltdowns at checkout when you deny them chocolate, they will learn, just as you have, that the tough stuff is necessary to shape us. It cannot all be matching ballerina dresses and gold stars and snowmen. But it can be all heart— even on the days I run out of patience, I can promise we will never run out of love.

  • Sorry You Can't Lick the Outlet | Thu, 13 Sep 2018 20:46:28 +0000

    My best friend texted me this morning that after finally caving by allowing her son to have graham crackers for breakfast, he cried when she broke it in half. If I had a dollar for every time I cut my children’s fruit wrong, wouldn’t allow them to drink toothpaste from the tube, or stopped them from eating a flaming s’more, I’d be able to open my own soundproof hotel where parents could stay for free and scream into lavender-scented-pillows until their heart’s content.

    We are not alone in this struggle—in fact there is an entire hashtag with 89k+ post exclusively for pictures of crying toddlers and children because their “a-hole parents” are just trying to keep them alive by not allowing them to stick their head in the toilet or eat cereal out of the dog bowl. If it makes me an a-hole parent for trying to prevent you from getting pink eye or Canine Brucellosis, so be it. I thought perhaps these power struggles would lessen with age, but I’ve found that some how they’ve gotten more ridiculous and often complex. For example, my 4-year-old is obsessed with spraying her bangs with water to get them out of her face, so she looks like a mini cast member of the Jersey Shore, but she refuses to wear hair clips because they are “too pokey” and the water helps make her hair the right amount of “swishy”. If there was a retort to that argument, it was in none of the parenting books I skimmed over.

    I often wonder, how could something so small be such a big deal in their world? What I try and tell myself (although it can be hard to hear over all the screaming) is, in that moment their world is that graham cracker or tube of toothpaste. If they could find a way to start a peaceful protest and articulately express why it is important to them that they be allowed to wear socks in the swimming pool, I am sure they would. But thanks to evolution and survival of the fittest, a child’s whine pitch frequency is the most effective means for getting an adult’s attention because before it was complaining about not being allowed to watch “Daniel Tiger” for the 3rd time that day, it was whining that the actual tiger was getting too close for comfort.

    Their objections are reminders that their little brains are still developing and according to Janet Lansbury it is our job to make them feel safe and heard. Well hear this, Janet, sometimes that’s simply impossible and so as a parent you’ll laugh, cry, get mad, walk away or maybe snap a picture for Instagram because you’ve maxed out on your quota of kid crazy for that day. This is not easy! It is tough to be tough! Luckily though, we a-hole parents are highly trained and the most qualified in the art of turning that frown upside down.

  • Is My Glow Showing? | Fri, 31 Aug 2018 14:58:35 +0000

    I subscribe to Magnolia magazine because I’ve never disagreed with Joanna Gaines’ taste, hustle, or passion for family. Unfortunately, my love affair may have come to a screeching halt when she was quoted to say, “I have always really enjoyed being pregnant-- because I tend to feel my best during those 9 months.” We used to be cool JoJo. Do not get me wrong, pregnancy is a miracle and absolutely no part of me is ungrateful for my body’s ability to create life. I would withstand any amount of pain and discomfort if it meant my baby is waiting for me on the other side. That being said—let's stop with all this glowy, beaming, nonsense we claim as truth during pregnancy. If you did happen to have that miracle please keep it to yourself, claiming radiance is no way to make mom friends during playgroup.

    As a whole my hyperemesis seems to have subsided and am left now with random spouts (pun intended) of sickness. Last week, I woke up feeling parched from a particularly intense workout with Fit4Mom the night before. Along with my conservative allotment of coffee, I drank at least 20 oz of water with breakfast. I had just started the process of loading up my kids to head out to the children’s art studio, ArtBeast, in Sacramento and Charlotte was frustrated because she has inherited my sensitivity to uncomfortable clothing which typically peaks every day in her car seat when the seatbelt causes dresses and skirts to become too tight and restricting. She had picked out a new fluffy tutu dress and was screaming while attempting to take it off. Madeleine used this opportunity to kick her leg out and lightly tap Charlotte on her feet, which as anyone with two kids knows, is the equivalent of challenging their sibling to a duel and this only made Charlotte cry harder. My 3rd, unborn child, determined to participate in her own way in the chaos; and so without warning the entire contents of my stomach projected out of my nose and mouth like that scene from the Exorcist onto our front lawn. The momentum rocked me off balance and I attempted to steady myself while blindly reaching out into our rose bushes only to grab a fistful of thorns. This lasted for exactly 3 minutes and 57 seconds and I only know this because I made it through one round of Elton John singing, “Can you Feel the Love Tonight”, which we listen to on repeat every moment we are in the car. Thankfully my theatrics quieted the kids since I just provided them with music and a show all before 9 o’clock in the morning.

    So while we can agree on our love of shiplap and oversized clocks, Joanna and I disagree on pregnancy bringing out our best. What I can say is that I re-brushed my teeth, hosed down my lawn and we made it to ArtBeast without further puke or protest; because while in no way do I feel like a beacon of fruitful radiance, I sure know how to do the multi-tasking mommy hustle.

  • MISSED ME, MISSED ME, NOW YOU GOTTA KISS ME | Wed, 22 Aug 2018 19:46:00 +0000

    These days my daughters have begun to implement the policy “early to bed even earlier to rise”. I like to believe it is because they miss us when they sleep and are consumed by their love for us, which makes 4:30am slightly more bearable. Our bed has always been a place for everything: dogs, kids, breakfast and it was not an accident that one of Madeleine’s first words was “snuggle”. We are an “I love you”, kisses and hugs family because I will never let a day go by where anyone that lives in my heart questions my love for them. Love is simply too important.

    I’ve felt this baby move much earlier than science would suggest possible, but I’m sure, because I’m the only one that knows her. The stirrings of pregnancy are like a secret only a mother can understand. We are alone together for such a short time before I have to share her with the world. I remember when Charlotte was born and since she was the first grandchild on both sides, she was constantly being adored by everyone—but when she was out of my arms and our heartbeats were no longer inches apart, I missed her like I would if I had lost a part of my body.

    I recognize by having 3 children that the individual attention allotted to each will be even less than before. My husband and I will be outnumbered, so we are guaranteed to miss one daughter’s band-aid application or back-to-school night, unless we start seriously considering the addition of a sister-wife to even out our adult-to-child ratio.

    Several close friends have gotten emotional as they sent their kids off to TK or kindergarten this past week, and I recognize these emotions even though it is not yet our turn: we parents have always been there and now school is the first place we will miss out on watching them grow in new ways. I remember 10 years ago I visited a wild-life sanctuary in Australia and I watched a mother kangaroo struggle to carry her much-too-old teenage joey in her pouch. Back then, I felt sorry for her struggle. Now, as a mom, I believe that kangaroo is my spirit animal and was living the dream of always keeping her child close by. Just the other day Charlotte told me, “I wish I could be inside your tummy again, Mommy. Then we could be together all the time and I would never miss you.” How could someone so young, understand love so profoundly? And so I will do my best to be present for every snuggle, invest in a bed larger than a California king, while channeling my inner Mama kangaroo, all without missing a beat.

  • Conscious Mothering | Thu, 09 Aug 2018 18:52:35 +0000

    There is an internal war that rages within mothers around the world. We battle each other, ourselves and strangers to compete for the ability to have it all while simultaneously doing it the best. An impossible standard that reflects the perfect balance between not just one or two things, but everything. It is not enough to just be a mom, but we need to work, run marathons, clean/cook--all while maintaining an image of sanity and happiness with the perfect caption and filter for social media. In my husband and I’s decision to trade in our family-four-pack for an uneven, out-numbered party of five, I felt myself give way to an internal shift. For some of you this may have happened with your first, second or fifth child-- or you could completely disagree and choose a different way. But in my experience, today, I have consciously decided to go all in and wear my mom hat and fanny pack proudly as my main identity.

    Somewhere in between one and two kids I became obsessed with the idea that my strong, independent, feminist-self was being suffocated by motherhood. I will never be the person I was before I became a mom. What a terrifying concept that I am not myself anymore. I had so many tiny hands pulling me every which way, I was scared I wouldn’t be strong enough to balance the weight of it all.

    If I put my life into acts like a play, one would assume that I’d always be in the starring role. But this is not the case right now. It is not about me, it is about them and the little life inside I am growing. And the most important thing I’ve learned is that is ok. This act is theirs and mine will come later. I enjoy holding them up to the light so they can shine, in fact, it makes me the happiest I have ever been. Of course, I carve out pieces of time for me, my husband, my friends and extended family all of which makes my heart even fuller. But I am consciously choosing to put all my chips on motherhood. I will happily succumb to the minivan, softball practice, and bedtime stories because these are purposeful choices I am making. Motherhood doesn’t have to be like gravity where it exists simply because it does. How easy it is to take for granted these everyday motions and look around to watch every other mom somehow doing it all with more grace and a cleaner house. I now see that my kids were never pulling me down, but rather helping me step into the role I was meant to play.

    From the second your child enters your life an internal alarm is triggered that ignites guilt, pressure, self-doubt and seems to magnify our inadequacies-- the results cannot leave any sane woman unscathed. We are never doing enough, being enough, giving enough. To which I say enough now. Enough. I have decided to let it all go and embrace my new mantra that in motherhood I may have lost my sanity, but I have found my soul.

  • More than Spit-Up | Sun, 29 Jul 2018 20:00:52 +0000

    It’s been a long time my friends! I wish I could tell you that I took a 6-week vacation to Hawaii and now I’m tropically tan, rested and ready to conquer the world. Instead, we are gratefully pregnant with baby girl number three— but sadly, with my third round of Hyperemesis Gravidarm (HG). For those of you unfamiliar with this medical condition that sounds like I only have months to live, it is a complication of pregnancy characterized by intractable nausea, vomiting, and dehydration that affects about .5-2% of pregnant women.  This condition was made famous by Kate Middleton, who despite this horrific ordeal is still managing to pop out little royals like they alone are in charge of repopulating the Earth. It’s really only a ailment fit for a princess because then at least you have dozens of nanny’s, special cooks etc. to help with your existing children and ridiculous food cravings like caprese salad at 9am or a peanut butter smoothie for dinner.

    All of my efforts this past 14 weeks have been put towards barely surviving mothering my daughters and running to and from every toilet, sink, and garbage can in a 50-mile radius. Don’t let slap-stick comedy fool you; throw up in real life, is not a lot of thing-- including funny. 


    It is not morning sickness.

    Almost all pregnant women get some form of morning sickness and it not just limited to the AM hours. Really it should be renamed mourning sickness where you mourn your new normal of feeling like you simultaneously want to nap while murdering your co-worker who ate tuna for lunch and hasn’t showered since Tuesday. It is around 3 or 4 weeks of queasiness with occasional vomiting. Compared to what I have; that sounds like a Hawaiian vacation.


    It is not a time for suggestions or comments.

    Have you tried motion sickness bands, morning sickness lozenges, vitamin B6, acupuncture? 

    When you are sick over a dozen times in a day, yes I have tried absolutely everything. You’d be amazed how many people have used these last 3 months to tell me just how much they personally hate vomiting.

    It is my least favorite sickness to have. Ugh, I just hate it.

    You are not an anomaly. With the exception of professional hot dog eaters, absolutely everyone, including me, hates throwing up.


    It is not a time to tell your vomiting stories.

    Please don’t tell me about that one time you tried the fish tacos out of a food truck in Fort Lauderdale and got food poisoning from both ends for 2 days. Not only does the idea of fish tacos actively bring my breakfast up into my mouth, but now I can’t stop picturing you on the toilet.


    The irony is not lost on me that the title of my blog is Wit and Spit-Up and I’ve accepted that bodily fluids are simply a part of my everyday life. I knew the gamble we were taking purposefully wanting a third when I’ve had this condition with my past two-- however this is simply how my body creates the world's most wonderful daughters. And so, I look forward to the days when we are back to the wit and done with the spit-up.

  • Two Rhymes with Poo | Wed, 20 Jun 2018 18:44:40 +0000

    An unexpected perk of having my children 20 months apart was recently my 4-year-old, taught my 2-year-old how to use the potty. In fact, they both taught each other something new. Let me start from the beginning.

    I fully intended, in my life before kids, that I would be a research-based parent. I’d join support groups, read self-help books with titles like “Harmonizing with your Child through Love and Understanding”. I’d pull lessons from Free Range Parenting, Helicopter, and whatever magical pressure/love combo that turns so many Asian children into concert violinists and mathematicians. Turns out I’m so busy being a parent every minute of every day that I don’t have the energy to research theories on child-rearing. I simply show them love and teach compassion and cross my fingers that no body asks me to fly to Mexico for a Spring Break wedding on their high school Senior trip. 

    Several months ago, I tried 2 days of undies-only for Maddie, and during that time she demonstrated her non-readiness by upping my laundry loads by 200%. That was my one-and-only-potty-training move I used with Charlotte—so I decided to turn to my 4-year-old for guidance. During the next few weeks my girls became fascinating by the bathroom.

    What are you doing in there, Mom? Are you pooping? Can I see? Can I sit on your lap?

    Sigh. I look forward to the day where I can instill a closed-door bathroom policy, with assurance that my kids won’t use that time to baby powder the dogs.  

    On the plus side, Maddie was gaining interest and so I capitalized on this by overly rewarding and praising Charlotte. Charlotte at this point still struggled to consistently go #2 in the potty. Then one day, Maddie went #2 in the potty and my excitement was shockingly close to how I felt at my college graduation. Except I had done nothing. Then this happened: 

                   “Look Mommy, I showed Maddie how to pee in the potty!”

                   “Look Mommy, now Charlotte does poopy like me!”

                   Somehow, in a weekend, they solved each other’s bathroom dilemmas all while I did very little besides cheerlead and provided toilet paper from the sidelines. Not that it isn’t work—I’ve never "mommied" harder than the 5am wakeup call, to my pantless children each carrying their full potties, while I feigned Disneyland excitement levels, as they present me with their morning duties.

  • Four Fish Funerals | Fri, 25 May 2018 19:34:28 +0000

    One of my vivid memories as a child was bury our fish in the backyard and then continually going to dig him back up to see what would happen. I assumed death was like some sort of magic trick and Gilly’s body would simply disappear and then reappear in the clouds, in heaven. It is because of this experience we are a flushing family, through and through. As I shared last week, we took the plunge into purchasing goldfish for the girls. I am going to spoil the ending and reveal that we’ve had 4 fish funerals in exactly one week.  

    It began when I went upstairs to drop off a load of clean laundry and then happened upon my youngest sitting around a puddle of water and stroking Grandpa Fish ever so tenderly in her hands. I’m not sure if you’ve ever tried to catch a fish, but those suckers are slippery. If I wasn’t so completely horrified, I might be a little impressed by her fishing abilities. The next morning my husband noticed Peggy Fish was starting to float awfully suspiciously and so he primed the kids that she might be going on a vacation very soon, and likely out of solidarity/being cuddled by my 2-year-old, Grandpa Fish, also went belly up within an hour.

    The girls went off to Nana and Papa’s house and I replaced the fish with Peggy 2.0 and Grandpa 2.0 and my children were none the wiser. The very same manager sold me two more at full price because while I will do most anything for my kids, carrying a bag of dead fish in my Kate Spade purse is not one of them. Meanwhile I have got to hand it to Mr. Petco Manger for knowing his sh** because I did have to replace the water everyday due to an abundance of feces, which between my children and my dogs, I need more poop in my life, like I need more judgement from the employees at Petco.

    Within 2 days we had lots more hands-inside-the-water-incidents and one more unexplained death. The final straw was, well, I do not want to call it murder, but let’s just say two-year-olds don’t understand that fish don’t drink orange juice. We gave them proper goodbyes down the porcelain expressway and my children learned about bigger life lessons and I learned I simply do not need any more non-human responsibilities. I’ve retired our fish bowl safely away in the closet because while my kids easily accept that all fishies go to heaven, this is simply 4 flushes too many for this Mama.

  • A Fishing Expedition | Thu, 17 May 2018 22:21:08 +0000

    As you already know we have two dogs that are insanely loved by our girls and barely tolerated by my husband and me. After scoring all the necessary items on Buy Nothing Davis for a goldfish, I decided to surprise the girls with a trip to Petco after preschool. I was beyond thrilled that of all the sparkly, glow-in-the-dark fish at the pet store, they chose the 19-cent feeder fish. It took one store employee and the manager to consult with me on our 41-cent purchase.

    Here is our unedited conversation:

    “What type of living environment do you have for them at home?”

    “Like their tank? I have a small fish bowl for them.”

    Petco employees exchange a judgey look.

    “We recommend for goldfish you get a larger tank because they expel a lot of waste and so you will be changing the water constantly and it’s not an optimal environment for them.”

    “Yeah, that’s not going to happen. I’m sure we can change the water daily.”

    “Well, I mean we can’t stop you from getting them, but you will officially be going against doctor’s orders.”

    Pause for sarcastic laughter since we are talking about fish that have the word "feeder" in their name. There is none. 

    “I think I can live with that. Can you put them in two separate bags please?”

    “They would probably be more comfortable in the same bag.”

    “Yes, but it would make for a much more comfortable car ride home if each of my daughters is holding one bag.”

    “Are you going straight home with them?”

    “We are stopping at Jamba Juice first.”

    “I recommend going straight home and keeping them out of direct sunlight.”

    At this point I decided to pay for the fish just to end the most ridiculous conversation I’d had that day and that included the one with my two-year-old about why we must wear pants in Target.

    Finally my girls are holding their individual fish bags, grinning like they’ve just found Nemo.

    We proceed to walk around the store and admire all the smelly rodents we won’t be purchasing this side of 5th grade, introducing our fish, which we have affectionately named Grandpa and Peggy (after my Dad and his girlfriend), to each of the store’s 9 hamsters and 5 Guinea pigs. We did our best to avoid turning into Darla, with only one dropping incident. 

    The manager who fished out our fish stopped us at the door to ensure that we paid the 41-cents and weren’t the mother-and-daughter-fish-stealing-masterminds you watched on CSPAN. Just to seal his fate as the star of my next blog he told me that if I brought the dead fish carcasses back to the store, we would get a replacement free of charge for the next 30 days with our receipt.

    All of this may sounds a bit fishy, but I assure you it's all true. We are back home now and my children are currently taking turns holding the bowl with Grandpa and Peggy on their laps, while the other one snacks on Goldfish crackers.

  • Lessons in Extreme Parenting | Thu, 26 Apr 2018 20:48:06 +0000

    It seems all parents have similar experiences, whether it be braving Costco on a Saturday or attempting the zoo during kid’s free admission day. But what makes it “extreme” are the unique little touches, like misplacing a child in Costco only to find them elbow deep in a 4.5 pound bag of chocolate chips or believing they are out of the "poo-splosion" phase only to become the parent with the pantless two-year-old at the monkey exhibit.

    The formula goes like this:

    It’s not enough that ______ but then ______ = extreme parenting.

    If like me, math is not your strong suit, here are a couple of clarifying examples:

    Jogging with the kids in the Burley is a lesson in patience and personal space, but what qualifies it as “extreme” is when your oldest declares she must use the potty immediately and then both children pop-a-squat, pants down on a hill of fire ants, 3 miles from home.

    Your baby is snuggled sweetly in the front pack and it’s not enough that you are wearing them in 80 degree heat, but you are also nursing them like a bad-A African Tribes' woman, while playing a mean game of Simon Says with your toddler in hopes it will distract them enough to go poop in the potty.

    As if it isn’t hard enough to have 3 or more kids, but in order to get them places, Moms are forced to drive an unsexy ginormous wagon that screams, “I am safely driving 5mph below the speed limit, with our half dozen kids safely harnessed in amongst 500 airbags, while watching a PBS educational program, so you and your Tesla need to go around us.” 

    Doesn't get more extreme than Fit4Mom Davis' Stroller Strides--with three kids under 4 and a homemade MacGyvered triple Bob stroller 😃

    It’s not enough that we have to load and unload the dishwasher 2-3 times a day, but what makes it extreme is when both your kids are doing laps around the kitchen island while you are attempting to put away the steak knives.

    The lesson here is that in order to get through it, no longer let the surprises, surprise you. When you order the most delicious thing on the menu your children will absolutely eat 3/4th of it, leaving you with the gross kind of melon and a sad garnish. So whatever parenting adventure you are experiencing just count on it being hard, extremely.

  • Mommy Math | Fri, 13 Apr 2018 21:42:38 +0000

    I intentionally married an engineer in the hopes of creating tiny humans with perfectly balanced brains, with my portion contributing to their English excellence and my husband providing all that boring math stuff. Nowhere in my job description as a Stay-at-Home Super Mom did I sign up for endless amounts of complex math problems; and yet somehow motherhood is riddled with word problems that look like this:

     If your child falls asleep in the car for longer than 3 minutes, they will

    a.      take their regularly scheduled nap for its full allotted time

    b.      take a shorter nap at another time

    c.      count those 3 minutes as that day’s nap time and then proceed to be cranky for the total number of hours they should actually be napping.

    The answer is c. Always c.

    Here is a list of daily mommy equations (look at me using math terms!) that include but are not limited to: probability, fractions, and ratios; and just like mathematical proofs, these statements can always be proved true:

    Equation #1: Other people will appoint themselves experts on your family equation—claiming to know the appropriate gender ratio and proper size. 2 girls? Oh, your husband must need a boy.

    Clearly, my husband has everything he needs 😊

    Equation #2: The healthier the food the longer you can stretch the 10-second rule. For example, if broccoli gets dropped on the ground, the 10-second rule stands. However, the opposite is true for unhealthy foods. When your child drops a cupcake on the playground—uh-oh, it’s garbage within 2 seconds. The inverse of this rule applies for adults: broccoli= garbage, cupcake=easily edible after 10-seconds and just pray for frosting side up.

    Equation #3: No child shall start a nap after 3pm, or else their bedtime and your bedtime will overlap. You can roll the dice and skip nap time altogether in hopes of an early bedtime, but you may experience extreme whininess for the last two hours of the evening.

    Equation #4: A messy activity is acceptable as long as the clean-up time required takes only 1/10th the amount of time your toddler gave you of blissful, uninterrupted, quiet time.

    For example; pictured below is a friend’s daughter expressing her creativity by sticking women’s sanitary products around the house, including her baby sister (bonus time is given if both children are involved!). This looks like 30 minutes of harmless fun, for less than 3 minutes of clean up.

    Just like Pythagorean’s theorem where a² + b² = c² our children are always in charge of the variables so no matter what we do, we're squared.

  • What's in Store | Mon, 02 Apr 2018 20:45:48 +0000

    For some Moms, shopping is their cardio, for others it is the only place they can socialize with humans who won’t wipe snot on their yoga pants. For me, I genuinely have no desire to spend my precious child-free time in a grocery store, unless they are putting on some sort of free cheese sampling; nor do I want to bring them along to watch them meltdown when I say no to buying a "CONGRATULATIONS: IT'S A GIRL" balloon. I believe online shopping was invented for all hardworking parent and until there is a truly convenient store for parents, I will happily partake in Instacart, Blue Apron, DoorDash or any other genius, life-saving app millennials are out there making millions on inspired by our so-called laziness.

    What would my ideal grocery store look like? So glad you asked…

    Some sort of freshly brewed caffeinated beverage is handed to me upon entering the premises.

    The kid’s shopping cart to adult shopping cart ratio is always 1:1 and each aisle is equipped with bumpers like in bowling, because who wants to pay for 42 broken bottles of ketchup?

    There is a peaceful napping aisle where children can go and wrap up in bath towels so Mom and Dad can put things like cupcakes in their cart without creating a sugar frenzy.

    No shirts, no shoes, no service never applies to my kiddos—in fact, there is a shoe bin next to the door because 20 minutes in, shoes will be flung about anyways.

    Comments about how beautiful my children are as well as our impeccable fashion sense, are always appreciated—comments about “having my hands full” will get you this:

    It is a judgement free zone, so toddler tantrums result in free ice cream…for their parents.

    If and when everything goes to hell, there is a free childcare zone to deposit them, so for once I can actually read all the ingredients on the soup label without my daughter reminding me that she doesn't like soup and won’t eat it.

    Lastly, there are no candy, snacks, or rainbow sparkly toys munchkin height, guaranteed to ruin what was a successful shopping trip, upon arriving at the checkout.

    Until such a place exists or I've created it and made my millions, I will continue to refer to all grocery shopping experiences with my young children as a trip to the "inconvenience" store.

  • Asking for a Friend | Fri, 16 Mar 2018 21:21:03 +0000

    It’s perfectly normal to question everything as parents. Moms everywhere are having the exact same beginning of conversation that sound like this:

    “Hey do your kids ever…?” or “How many times have you _____?”

    If our friends pause too long or stare blankly back at you, this is when we are forced to tack on—

    “I’m just asking for a friend”.

    (As a side note, I strongly suggest changing up your friend-group to a judgement-free zone and hanging with people that will nod along supportively even if they are secretly thinking WTF kind of animal circus are you running?)

    Here is a list I’ve complied of the best questions, we parents, have secretly asked:

    No shirt, no shoes, no services never applies to children right?

    How many times have you eaten dessert in your pantry because you didn't want to share?

    You know those signs that say don’t drink from the hose, irrigation water in use—does running through the sprinklers with their mouths open count?

    How do I explain why girls need to pee sitting down?

    How many lollipop bribes in a day is considered too many?

    Are pants in the car really just a formality?

    Does it count as sleeping through the night, when I don’t remember if I got up with them?

    About what age should I stop listening to music with explicit lyrics in the car?

    Does the 10 second rule apply off a public bathroom floor or should it be more like 3 seconds?

    What is the difference between yelling and speaking loudly at my kids? 

    Do you ever wake up to your children roaming like free-range chickens around your house and wonder what time they started?

    Where should I dump the poop when my kids use their little potty on the side of the road?


    Obviously none of these are true for my family, I’m just asking for a friend.

  • A Second Shot at Two | Thu, 08 Mar 2018 00:58:52 +0000

    I remember it well: I had 3 minutes to get everyone into the car and so naturally this was the day my youngest decided to first utter the phrase, “I do it myself.” Just like coming into contact with the Death Eaters from Harry Potter, I could feel the life-force being sucked out of me. These particular words (in various forms) exhaust parents everywhere; add 20 minutes of lag time to your exit strategy and an extra shot in your latte. If you aren’t using some sort of under eye night cream, start. Envision the amount of patience you’d need to sit at an NRA sponsored Trump rally (so really just a rally) and then quadrupole it and that should cover you until about 9am on any given Tuesday with a two-year-old. 

    Since this is my second shot with a two year old, I have complied a list that can help you through this stage of "I can do it myself" that coincidently coincides with: limited dexterity, pig-headed stubbornness, and world class meltdowns.

    1). Find shoes that a blind chimpanzee could put on and buy 4 pairs (for your car, front door, back door, and an emergency pair for when, not if, all those others get lost).

    2). Don’t hand them anything that shatters when thrown. Everything they handle should be the consistency of string cheese—for your safety and the safety of your Magnolia Market knick knacks.

    3). Avoid purchasing any food that you yourself aren’t able to open blindfolded with your feet.

    4). Never and I mean never give them your cellphone. Not only will you have to deal with the judgy-eyed ladies at Target that use expressions like "In my day...", but you will quickly lose social media followers with your posts of: “--vbbnnnmnmmnnmmm    n” followed by angled pictures directly up your kid's nostrils.

    5). Never purchase clothes with zippers or buttons unless you enjoy spending the majority of the day standing in your front entry way and never actually leaving the house.

    6). If you say “yes” to something once, an unwavering precedent has been set—so think really carefully about telling them they can peal their own hardboiled egg.

    I love raising my fierce, independent little women but there is just something about two-year-old’s that makes everything twice as terribly hard. 

  • The Plight of the Pacifier | Wed, 21 Feb 2018 22:30:31 +0000

    One of the soothing staples in our household is the pacifier. My children know it as a “bee-bo” and it was a magical device up until my husband and I would regularly have conversations that sounded like:

    “I couldn’t find the bee-bo with the rocket on it and that’s the only one that Charlotte says is “the good one” so she cried until we found the Mickey one which apparently is also acceptable.” I highly suggest sprinkling this sentences into your wedding vows, because I guarantee in your wedded bliss no one anticipates spousal arguments at midnight over whose turn it is to locate the good binky.

    Feel free to substitute pacifier for anything to make our struggle relatable: bottles, blankets, boobies. We hold on tight to anything that makes our jobs as parents a little easier. Until it makes everything harder and that is where we landed. There are over 137 different ways to quit this habit but rather than fairies or fancy tricks we went cold turkey. As a rebuttal for going cold turkey—I had my 2-year-old boycott naps all together for 5 days and my 4-year-old waking up every hour in a sleepy haze, crying for her bee-bo like a nicotine junkie jonesing for a cigarette or the patch. Only there is no patch for this and I know a little something about addiction and half measures avail us nothing. Thankfully, in the most dramatic of fashions, I threw all 23 pacifiers in a garbage can in a parking structure in Sacramento, because I knew at 3 in the morning I would go dig them out of our own trash and be so tempted to cave to ease their “suffering”.

    Knowing what I do now, would I go back in time and not put that tiny piece of plastic in my baby’s mouth to avoid the last week of hell? Nah, it has allowed me: many peaceful car rides, the precious few extra minutes of sleep and so many Stroller Strides workouts I couldn’t possibly count. The bee-bos have served their purpose and are gone for good, but I do promise to stand by you, children of mine, until you have learned to self-sooth in sickness and in health and in our new life together without pacifiers.

  • A Valentine’s Day Poem for the Millennial Mom | Thu, 15 Feb 2018 01:53:35 +0000

    It’s 2 in the morning,

    I’m stuffing cards for their class.

    How does every holiday

    Become a pain in my ass?


    The note from the school read:

    “No sugar, nuts, dairy--and of course gluten-free

    We don’t need to remind you,

    About childhood obesity.”


    Heart “cookies” for the girls

    And little Legos for the dudes.

    “Treats” should be baked

    (Or) At the very least from Whole Foods.


    Homemade cards that glitter,

    Each topped with a feather.

    It’s really just a contest,

    To pretend we have our sh*t together.               


    The goodies are completed

    With cards they "helped" make.

    I’m waiting for their exit,

    Before I stuff my face with cake.


    This holiday should be a day of compassion,

    Full of sugar, friends, and our love interest.

    It is not a day to out “Stepford Mom” each other,

    From unobtainable goals on Pinterest.

    Happy Valentine's Day from my munchkins to yours!



  • The Ick Factor | Wed, 31 Jan 2018 21:42:29 +0000

    Yesterday at my daughter’s preschool I watched 6 out of the 15 kids pick their noses during circle time. 4 of them ate it, 1 of them wiped it on their pants and the other on their neighbor. Let’s face it, sometimes our little angels are just gross little monsters. 

    Several months into my first pregnancy, I remember reading Kaiser’s suggested birth plan ideas (pause for after-the-fact laughter that anyone thinks you can possibly plan how your precious miracle will enter the world). I vividly remember checking the box that said “I’d like my baby to be lightly toweled off before being placed on my chest”. I kept searching for the “just like in the movies” box that said, “a 5-month-old, freshly bathed and lightly dipped in jelly will be handed to me”, however that apparently wasn’t covered under our insurance. Not only did I help pull Charlotte out myself, but she could have been plastered in a pickle/black olive juice combo and I still would have kissed her head and inhaled her scent like I needed it to give me life (which I still do).

    One of my children, who will remain nameless to respect their privacy, brought me a little treasure, cupped so gently in her hands I thought she was showing me an injured bird. Nope, it was poop. A perfectly shaped turd that must have fallen out during a diaper change. Rather than run screaming in disgust, I immediately hosed everyone down and then upped their fiber intake, in that order.

    I thought that by having little girls I might escape the laundry list of icks, but no such luck. Luckily, there are no amount of boogers, bodily fluids, and BM’s that could stop us from loving our messy little monsters.

  • YOU GOT SOME ‘SPLAIN’ TO DO | Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:20:21 +0000

    We’ve all heard of the term mansplaining; when a man explains something to a woman in a condescending or patronizing tone--for example, “I listened as the mechanic mansplained to me that in order for my car to run efficiently I would need to get regular oil changes.” What I recently heard was the term momsplaining which is when a mom needs to explain something to someone--be it her husband, a stranger or her children for the 14 millionth time that day. The key difference, however, is a mother is actively attempting not to come across as rude which is difficult when you are lactating, sleep-walking and explaining… again. An example of this would be when you need to momsplain to your toddler that Alexa cannot make ice cream just appear. When you enter the phase of “why” expect momsplaining to reach epic, almost fit-yourself-for-a-straight-jacket proportions.

    Probably the worst offense of the term comes when a fellow Mom, attempts to offer unsolicited new mommy advice but tries to guise it as momsplaining. An example of this looks like:

    New mommy: “No one is sleeping at night so I’m going to try the Cry-It-Out Method.”

    Seasoned mommy: “In my research, Cry-It-Out destroys neurons and will wire your child for stress. It also increases their likelihood of one day starring in reality television and selling weight-loss shakes on Instagram.”

    Soon after your children learn to speak they will begin kidsplaining, which is them justifying their behavior or clarifying to you how the world works:

    Me: "Do you need a shirt?"

    Maddie: "Nope. I do this." (Pulls pants up to her armpits)

    Me: “It is time for bed.”

    Charlotte: “I don’t need to sleep because I already did that yesterday.”


    We are all doing our best, trying to keep up in this confusing world. If I knew all the secrets, believe me I’d share them with you. One thing I do know for sure--when I look at these two, some things just don’t need explaining.

  • A Healthy Splash of, "Oh Dear, what have we done?" | Fri, 05 Jan 2018 22:18:55 +0000

    And just like that it’s 2018. The overall consensus was that 2017 was a real stink-fest—but if you are a parent that just cannot be true. Chances are your little darlings did something incredible last year whether it be: they came into the world, gained a sibling, or simply learned how to wipe their boogers on their own pants instead of yours.

    We all know that in January people get serious about making positive life changes. In our house, we have come up with a sure-fire way to guarantee success by letting our kids determine their own New Year’s resolutions. As a way to continue to ace this whole parenting gig and hold my children accountable, I will share them with everyone:

    My Kids' New Year’s Resolutions 2018:

    1). Ensure that Mom and Dad never have an opportunity for alone time to make certain we will remain their only children. As a precautionary backup plan, tandem scream-crying whenever Mom holds anyone else's baby, will also do the trick. 

    2). Go on record stating that it would be rude to stop accepting a yearly supply of Honest Company diapers from Aunt Cara and Uncle Dennis if we became an undies-only household in 2018. So we will enthusiastically continue to use pull-ups daily, since you have always taught us the importance of gratitude.

    3). Allow parents to host a Pacifier Farewell Party packed with balloons, professional fairies and the whole 9 yards with 0 intentions of ever giving up the magical sucking contraptions that will surely come with us to college (where we will be forced to attend a school that specializes in orthodontics).

    4). Live by the motto, "Sleep is for suckers".

    5). Never let our parents regret the decision to hire professional house cleaners by leaving no corner unlicked, no toilet paper roll unexplored. 

    6). Oscillate inexplicably from compassionate, conjoined best friends sharing everything from donuts to diseases into hair-pulling, shrieking ninjas that would rather bleed from the scalp than share that one specific orange marker.

    7). Lastly and most importantly, continue to keep both Mom and Dad on their toes morning, noon, and night (working in shifts if we have to) always making them grateful they made the decision to become parents with a healthy splash of, “Oh Dear, what have we done?”

    Happy New Year from our family to yours.


  • The Happy to my Holidays | Tue, 05 Dec 2017 01:18:03 +0000

    Hurry parents everywhere so we can stand in line for hours all to have a jolly stranger hold our kids so they can cry while we take a picture to post on social media with the hashtag #santafail. No, but really. If there is a Christmas-themed park, tree lot, or reindeer sleigh within a 15-mile radius of my house we are so there. I know, I’m just as surprised as you! Things that I would have thought would be irritating, like dressing my girls in matching outfits every day, turns out are actually kind of spectacular.

    This sounds totally nuts, but I woke up November 24th with the holiday spirit all thanks to my two little elves who are starting to believe in the magic of Christmas and if I didn’t know any better I, too, would swear that there will be a fat man scooting down my chimney in less than 3 weeks.  

    Like everything that happens with children it is all about managing your expectations and this time of year is no exception…

    Rather than go out into the wilderness with a chainsaw in 20 feet of snow, my Clark drove us the 3 minutes down the way to our local Boy Scout lot. What was supposed to be one 10-foot tree turned into a 12-foot tree and two 4-foot trees, which my girls hauled off the lot all by themselves. Their new favorite game is how many pine needles can they shove up each other’s nose before sneezing them out? So far they’ve made it to 3.

    Davis has a Children’s Candlelight Parade to the Christmas tree lighting downtown every year and call me over-protective but I would have thought they’d pass out flameless candles. We arrived in their matching flannel jammies and I noticed a 9-month-old holding a very real candle next to my highly flammable children. I guess that’s why the fire truck is also in the parade. We proceeded to walk without our candles lit as my girls held up traffic and had to be escorted by yours truly and the police out of the middle of the intersection. We left before the tree was lit.

    The 30 seconds before I blew them out.

    We have decorated a dozen cookies every day for the past 7 days. I’ve gained at least a pound a day and my girls think that frosting goes well on their tiny trees (aka broccoli). 

    Baby it’s cold outside, but this doesn’t stop any child anywhere from wanting to play outdoors. Just today in the blistering wind we went out with friends to Silveyville Tree Farm and rode a sleigh led by a (fake) reindeer through a forest of Christmas trees. It was just us on the sleigh due to the wind chill—but Charlotte leaned in towards Maddie, took her hand and then gave her a kiss. I almost couldn’t even write this today because my heart exploded with love.

    In this holidaze, things will never go according to your plan or agenda—because, well, kids. But they are the star on the tree, the light in the darkness, the sprinkles on sugar cookies, and the kiss under the mistletoe, if you only choose to believe.

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