Annoying Shit People Say To New Moms (Me.)

Can you even remember life with out a baby? Why yes I can actually. I love her, but I vividly remember the days of going to the store at the drop of a hat and not having to pack two bottles, a pouch of food, puffs and toys. I do remember the days of being hung over and being able to sleep on the couch all f-ing day long. I do remember being able to shower or write or draw whenever I wanted to and not have to wait till she napped. I do remember being able to use my phone without her screaming at me to give it to her. I love my baby, but yes I can remember life without a baby so that is a dumb question.

You can’t even remember the pain now, can you? It has been a year and a half and yes I can still remember the pain. I remember it quite well. It was worth it, but I still remember the agonizing contractions, the needles going into my body, the headache from the spinal fluid leak. I remember enough that I dread doing it again. I do remember… so that is another dumb question.

She looks just like her dad.. Oh, does she? That’s just what a mom that has carried a baby for 38weeks and gone through hours and hours of pain and weeks and weeks of being pregnant wants to hear. I love my husband more than anyone in the entire world, but I literally cringe every time someone says, “Now, I just see Travis” or “She looks just like her dad.” Well she is a girl, so I hope not just like her dad…who is a full man, not Bruce Jenner, and there are parts of me in her so stop being an asshole.
Do you breastfeed? It is really bizarre to me how everyone ask me this… not just women, but men ask me too. It’s just seems weird to me that people so openly talk about something sucking on my breast. What if I was one of those women that can’t breastfeed and then bawl like their baby every time someone brings up breastfeeding. Shit could get really awkward. It seems like a pretty controversial subject right now, like religion or politics and while I love to talk about both of those subjects in detail, I don’t want to talk about my boobs… unless you are telling me how good they look.
When are you going to have more kids? I was legit getting this question 2 months after having Bradley. I was thinking, ‘Fool, I just had a baby and I’m still sleep deprived and hating almost everything…including you so get out of my face.’ The answer is ‘No, I’m not thinking about having more kids at this time.’  I am at the weird point in life where I don’t want to be having kids after the age 31 and I don’t want Bradley to be more than two years older than her sibling, but I do not want to get pregnant now. The clock is ticking though. I hate that f-ing clock.
“Breastfeeding is so much healthier for your little one.” Thanks, but I never asked you and that is subjective. I’m disgusted by the amount of women that think I give a shit about their feelings on breastfeeding. The way I look at it is if I’m happy and feeling good then I can be a better mother. So really for us bottle feeding is healthier, because I am happier doing that and happy Mom means better mom. Bradley has had one cold and that was at 11 months old. She is happy, healthy, bottle fed baby.
“Just wait till your next one.” Possibly the most annoying statement I have ever heard. Bradley is an excellent baby. We could not have asked for a happier, more outgoing, good sleeping baby. Everyone that knows us as a family knows how easy Bradley is to parent, and when they find out how easy she is they usually will say at some point, “Just wait till your next one.” Why would anyone ever say that to a woman who is heavily contemplating whether or not to have another baby. I don’t need any discouragement because there is a good chance I would cut making babies off at one child. Also, every baby is different, but that absolutely does not mean my next baby is going to be the spawn of satan like everyone suggest. Maybe Travis and I are just very relaxed and happy around our child and she can sense that so she is happier.

Breastfeeding in Public…When Does It Become Inappropriate?

(IF YOU ARE THINKING ABOUT THROWING A SHIT FIT AND GETTING ALL MOMMY CRAZY…  READ THE ENTIRE STORY FIRST.)

Let me first set the scene up…. It’s Saturday at 5:30pm in a country where the grocery stores are closed on Sundays. It’s a packed madhouse with lines ten people deep at each of the four checkout lanes. Here I stand with my husband and baby waiting to buy our mass amount of groceries. Our daughter is smiling and waving at the baby in front of us.

Here comes the questionable part… The baby in front of us is a little fussy so her mom sits down on a case of beer and whips her boob out in front of us and the ten people behind us. Let me be clear, feeding her baby in public was absolutely not the problem or the point of this story. (I hate hearing babies cry so anything to stop it I was okay with.) The action in question comes when the baby didn’t want to milk her from the one teat she whipped the other one out and then sat there with both boobs hanging out… nipples and everything… for WAY more than just a few seconds.

Breastfeeding is one thing, exposing yourself to a group of people in a grocery store that aren’t paying to see and don’t want to see it is something else entirely. (I’m sure the three 14-year-old boys behind us where loving the free show.)

What is appropriate and what isn’t will never be something everyone agrees on. In some villages in Africa (and many places) women don’t wear shirts, much less bras, so having both breast out to feed isn’t inappropriate in the slightest. But in a culture where modesty is appreciated and exposing yourself in public can land you in jail the line between what is appropriate and what isn’t is a tough one to draw. On one hand this lady was feeding her child, on the other hand she had both boobs out for an extended amount of time and only one was being used to feed the child.

Should it be okay for women to breastfeed in public? Sure, just because I wouldn’t do it doesn’t mean shit. But should a woman have both boobs out (nipples out, too) while sitting in the grocery line?

These kinds of actions are what makes such controversy in the breastfeeding in public area.

(There are so many women and men that use the “look away if you don’t like it” ,but what are people suppose to do in this situation?  Walk through the check out line backwards? )

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What are your opinions or thoughts?

Intelligent comments are always welcome!

 

9 Things I Don’t Feel Guilty Spending Money On

Kids are expensive little boogers. From food and formula, to clothing, to healthcare, keeping them alive and healthy puts a dent in the bank and parents are never done. My parents and in-laws are still buying us stuff and not getting paid back. Once you have a kid they have you for life and they just keep sucking you dry. (The only thing my kid didn’t and future kids won’t suck dry is my milk bags, cause I’m not into that.)  Most parents do so much for their kids…literally keep them alive everyday. (I couldn’t keep my Sim baby alive worth shit, so I know keeping an actual baby alive everyday means I am winning as a parent.)

Because I keep my baby alive and healthy everyday, spend most of my time caring for her rather than doing fun hobbies or watching my shows on TV, and the fact that I know how much she really is cramping my style there are some things that I just refuse to feel guilty for spending our hard-earned money on.

9 Things I Don’t Feel Guilty Spending Money On

  1. Wine: I love wine, I love it even more since I’ve had a kid. She should feel guilty for driving me to drink. (joking, but seriously)

  2. Beer: I don’t drink it, but my husband does and sometimes I just need to be a good wife and buy something for him.

  3. Vodka: Sometimes I’m just not feeling wine.

  4. Takeout: Some days you just need to waste money on having a burger  or pizza delivered rather than spending time making it at home.

  5. Jail broken Apple TV 2: yes, it was a bit expensive and yes, it is an older, less advanced version of the Apple TV, but movie tickets, babysitters, and renting movies on iTunes is expensive. We get all the free movies and TV shows we want. No ridiculously expensive theaters with $7 sodas, no babysitters, it pays for itself pretty quickly.

  6.  A babysitter: I hate spending money on babysitters, but sometimes we need a night away from our little fungus. We need to go out to dinner without having to rush through our meal to prevent a meltdown, we need to drink wine without our kid trying to put her hand into our glass, we just need to get our young-adult on, damn it!

  7. Music: I never feel bad about buying music. I feel like I should, but I just don’t. I listen to it constantly and it makes me happy, so I buy it.

  8. Shopping online: I’m not taking my one-year-old shopping… I’ve tried and it was an unsuccessful disaster. I don’t go overboard or do a lot of shopping, but when I do spend money on clothes or shoes I don’t feel bad. These days anything I can do to make me feel sexy I don’t feel guilty about. Will that new top make me feel sexy?  I don’t know, but I’m sure going to buy it and see. I spend half my days in sweatshirts covered in snot and slobber, so just knowing I have something cute to wear if I have the chance to get out makes me feel good.

  9. Anything from a thrift shop: I know whatever I buy I’m getting it cheaper than buying it at a regular store, so really, the way I look at it is I may be spending money but really I am saving money.

Being a Mom (or Dad) doesn’t mean you have to spend ALL of your time and money on your kid and as long as your kid is taken care of you should never feel guilty about spending a little extra on yourself. (Unless it is on crack or meth or anything along those lines… then you should feel guilty.) 

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Tips For Traveling With a One-Year-Old… And How They Might Not Work

I was so nervous about my first international flight with my five-week old. We were on our way to Germany and my mind was racing with the ‘what-ifs?’ The most serious  being…What if she cried the entire eight-hour trip? Turns out flying with a newborn is a piece of cake and I made myself sick with worry for no reason at all.

Fast forward a year and that’s when the traveling nightmare begins.  Here are some tips to hopefully make your long-haul flight a little more enjoyable and how the these tips (personal experience and common sense) didn’t do shit to make our trip better.

My story of a complete nightmare

1. Bring your stroller

Car seats and strollers can be checked at the gate for free. You are still allowed to have a carry-on and purse along with the stroller. Bring the stroller! It will make life so much easier.

For some screwed up reason my husband and I decided not to bring our stroller. We thought we would just bring the car seat.  (We needed one for when we arrived in Germany.) The car seat connected to the stroller, but we still thought having a stroller would just make more for us to pack around. Walking through the airport with two pieces of luggage, a baby, a car seat, a jam packed baby bag, and a backpack is not easy. I was sweating and pissed. Not the best way to start a day of traveling off. We checked that heavy thing at the gate, grateful to be rid of it.

2. Get the bassinet

Most airlines have bassinets available for long-haul flights. They are suitable for babies up to 14 kg (30 lbs) and up to 83 cm (32 in) in length and are provided free of charge. (The weight max is different for different airlines. I am referencing Lufthansa airlines.) These make night flights so much more enjoyable because your child can keep their regular sleep pattern. For more information and tips on flying with a baby check out Lufthansa.com

As soon as you get to your seat make sure you have a bassinet that actually works available for you. Don’t wait until the plane is packed and you reach cruising altitude to ask about the bassinet, even if you reserved one. On the way to Germany this year I waited until the plane reached cruising altitude before asking if they would set the bassinet up and surprise, surprise it would not connect to the wall.  (You always have to wait until after take off to attach the bassinet to the wall, but ensure it will work before everyone has boarded.)   As the steward said, “Who ever messed this up will burn in the darkest place of hell.” He was just joking, but seriously damn that person.  We had already taken off and everybody was all settled in and we weren’t able to trade anyone seats on the completely full flight. So that started the trip from hell. Bradley had no place to truly fall asleep, the floor wasn’t doing it for her. Like most one-year-olds when she is tired she becomes a huge crybaby. (I’m not talking the awesome Johnny Depp kind, I’m talking make you want to pull your hair out kind.) There was a lot of screaming and crying.

3. Bring Activities 

Bring your child’s favorite toys, books, puzzles and stuffed animals. Anything that keeps them occupied at home could also keep them occupied on a plane.

The one-year-old age is a tough age to travel long distances. At this age kids want to touch, taste, and play with everything. For my daughter unless she is watching Baby Einstein, TV or movies won’t keep her distracted very long.  I brought puzzles, stuffed animals, books, it didn’t matter though she just wanted to crawl and explore. I was over prepared in the activities department, but it made no difference. We tried the plane movies, but she just wanted to break the headphones. We tried games on the iPad, but she just wanted to push the home button. We tried books, but she just wanted to throw them on the ground.

I’m not the kind of mother that is oblivious to everyone else around, so I wasn’t going to allow her to crawl up and down the aisle. I just can’t be that mother that lets her kid crawl/run around, get into people’s space/stuff or get in the way of the stewardess doing their job. I understand that it will happen sometimes, but those mothers that knowingly allow that to happen all of the time suck. It is usually the same mother that lets her kid kick the back of someones seat and then when asked to have their child stop she uses the excuse that he is too young to know he shouldn’t be kicking the seat and then doesn’t actually make them stop! I witnessed this happen once and was blown away by this mother’s stupidity. She didn’t even apologize to the man. It wasn’t like the kid was doing it for a couple of minutes, it went on for 15-20 minutes. (I’m guessing that kid will learn respect for others from his mother and be a disrespectful twit later in life.) When you tell your kid no, even at one-year-old ,they know they aren’t suppose to be doing whatever it is they are doing.

4. Bring your child’s favorite foods.

I was allowed to bring six 6 oz. bottles of boiled water through security and several packs of baby food. I got many conflicting reports on what food and drink you could bring through security, but every time (on Lufthansa) I have been allowed through security with what I brought. They did pat and rub me down to test for bomb residue (but I’m not gonna bitch about that because I don’t hate it) and then let me through. I really think it just depends on if the agents hate life or not. tsa.gov has more information about what items can be brought through security.

Bradley got real fussy about 2.5 hours into the flight. We walked her up and down the aisles, made funny sounds and silly faces, let her rip apart one of my magazines and fed her all the puffs she wanted (big mistake). She is always content when eating, so I wasn’t limiting her food. I’m pretty sure this gave her a bellyache and as soon as they turned off the lights in the cabin (so everyone could sleep) Bradley started screaming. Not just crying… Screaming. She wiggled to get away from us and pushed us away. I did let her down to crawl a couple of times, most everyone was trying to sleep and not up walking around, but she crawled right to the bathrooms. Disgusting. So I would pick her up and she would scream again. I was so embarrassed and felt terrible for Bradley, the other passengers around us, and myself. I was getting flustered and overwhelmed and I think Bradley could sense it. At one point as I was in the corner seat having a small meltdown, (when I get exhausted I become a huge bitch. I see myself being a baby/bitch, but can’t do anything about it) Travis was bouncing and walking Bradley trying to console her and when he comes back to the seat she had puked all over him. (I’m guessing we overfed her her favorite foods.)

5. Bring extra outfits 

You never know when your child is going to be sick and puke everywhere or poop out of their diaper so always be prepared with a change of clothes. Bring yourself a shirt change because you don’t want to sit for eight hours smelling of baby puke.

We spent the next hour in the bathroom cleaning puke and trying to get Bradley to settle down. At one point a lady the next aisle over gave me one of those ‘I feel so bad for you and understand what you are going through’ sad smiles. It made me feel a little better, because I knew at least one of the other passengers wasn’t cussing us in their head and could feel for us. I think you could probably read it all over my face, if someone would have said something to me (or given me mothering advice) that was in anyway condescending or rude I would have jumped across the seat and went Kerouac on their ass. Crying-baby really puts me on edge and hours of it can send even the most patient people into a spiral.

6. Don’t plan on anything and just relax

Babies feed off your energy. I was stressed, pissed and bitchy and my baby was the same way.  Around an hour from landing in Frankfurt I finally relaxed a little (because there was an end in sight) and Bradley stopped screaming! Maybe it was just a coincidence. Don’t plan on anything, because chances are nothing will go the way you think.

The lights were finally turned on in the cabin and breakfast served, by this point Bradley wasn’t crying anymore just fussing. As usual and just like I excepted she finally fell asleep at what would have been 1 am in the States and 6 km away from the Frankfurt airport. She slept the hour car ride to our flat in Köln and it let me get a quick nap before my next meltdown.

Moral of the story? I guess….

Baby Benadryl for the kid.

Tylenol for you.

Now I am not one to pump kids full of unneeded medication and since she had only taken baby Tylenol once I wasn’t going to give her Benadryl when she didn’t truly need it. (I had really considered it though, but decided against it.) Well… No way in hell I ever make that mistake again. Also, always bring Tylenol for yourself. Even if your baby isn’t screaming bloody murder the changes in cabin pressure can really make your head pound. 8 hours with a pounding headache can make the most enjoyable experience miserable.

You can read every tip for traveling with a baby ever given, but there is a good chance it won’t matter. I prepared everything from food, bottles, toys, blankets, stuffed animals, technology and she still screamed and fussed for 6 hours of the trip. Just try to prepare for every situation imaginable, over pack and say a quick pray before you depart.

Need It! The Dyson

 

I am absolutely obsessed with my Dyson Handheld Vacuum. I got one for a wedding gift and loved it so much I asked for another for Christmas so I could have one in Germany. Now that Bradley puts absolutely everything in her mouth I am constantly vacuuming. (Honestly, I constantly vacuumed before Bradley because I love it and between the dog and me there is hair freakin everywhere!)

It comes with a few different attachments and makes life so much easier for me. It’s cordless and holds a charge for long enough for me to get my place clean (or my car, or my stairs, or the baseboards, there are attachments for it all).

There are a few different kinds of handhelds, (I have the cheapest one at around $170) but totally worth every penny. If you love to clean (or just have to) I would and do suggest this to everyone.

So This Shit Happened

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It’s a good thing I enjoy cleaning because the job is never ending. If it isn’t dinner all over the floor, it’s her new interest that involves taking everything from where it belongs and spreading it all over the floor. On the plus side Bradley is learning to feed herself!

 

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So this shit happened the other day. Definitely something I never thought I would see or have to clean. Note that she wasn’t crying the entire time. She was actually having a grand ole time playing in her poo and when I walked in she showed me the poop on her hands like it was a play toy.  Not until I yelled, “Oh My….Shit!” and slightly panicked did she start crying.

“It happens…” “What? Shit” “Sometimes…” -Forrest Gump

 

Raising a Little Girl and Not Raising a Brat

Raising a kid is hard and at times scary. Being a girl myself I was terrified to raise a girl. I just always pictured having boys, (I have four young nephews so I know raising boys is not easy) but when I’d picture having kids I would always picture them as teenagers and boys just seemed easier. When I’d picture having a girl I would picture that 12 to 13-year-old brat or that 16-year-old  know it all that hates her mother. I won’t be one of those ‘I’m your friend’ mothers so she will probably hate me for a few years.

Because I only pictured those dreaded teenage years I never thought about the relationship I’d have with my little girl. Our relationship where she thinks I’m the greatest person in the world. Our relationship where she will look up to me and think I’m awesome. I never thought about how she would think I am so funny and laugh and laugh at me for flipping my hair or dancing. (It’s awesome having someone think I’m funny all of the time. I mean, I already knew I was funny, but she proves it) I didn’t think about how much fun it would be to dress her in black leather pants and fur vest so we could be so matchy matchy.  (Not the obnoxious ‘look just alike matching’, but just resemble each other.) The clothes I buy her are a direct result of my taste in fashion. They are black, fur, fringe or some sort of animal print and for now she wears them and loves them and I love it. Being a mother to a little girl is so much more fun than I could have imagined and even through those inevitable dicey teenage years that we are bound to go through she will eventually  come back to me as an adult where we can be friends and want to be around each other.

Back to raising a girl (any gender actually) and why it can be scary. I am 100% no expert, I don’t read those ‘How To Raise Kids’ books, but there are some common sense ways to raise a good kid. (I did read an article a while back… ‘How Not To Raise An Asshole’ …it was really good) I have many incredible women to look up to and learn from that have raised or are raising amazing people. My sister-in-law and brother have four incredible boys all under the age of 9. If they can have four well-behaved, respectful, amazing boys I know they must be doing something in the parenting field right and I really look up to them. My mom and dad raised four pretty awesome people 🙂 I also look to them for parenting advice. My husband and his sister are absolutely amazing people, so I know that my in-laws had good parenting ways, too.

I believe (I people… I believe… It’s what I believe.  I am not shaming any women that don’t feel the way I do. I am simply stating what I believe and if you don’t believe I am right then that is your prerogative and that is totally fine. I don’t care in the slightest) if I want to raise an independent, successful, smart, young woman I can’t be her friend while raising her. Boundaries will need to be set, she will need to be told ‘No’ and we (my husband and I) will need to be firm on our decisions. Obviously, I want my daughter to like me and want to be around me during those teenage years, but when a woman becomes a friend instead of a mother then that respect as a parent is lost and in its place is a friendship. Friends don’t have rules, so why would a kid follow the rules of their friend? (There is always that exceptional kid that just gets it and is a great kid even when their parent isn’t a great parent, but you don’t find it very often.)  Even at one year old Bradley has already started to push the boundaries, but I refuse to raise a brat. I’ve seen those kids, the ones that never hear ‘No’ because their parents ‘just want them to be happy’. Well kids aren’t suppose to be happy all of the time.  I haven’t been a parent that long, but I know that that is not good parenting… Get a clue. Always saying ‘Yes’ is raising an annoying brat that just expects things in life to be given to her (or him). And if you tell your kid (not baby!) ‘No’ and they throw a complete melt down fit then maybe, (dahn dahn dahn) they need a spanking. Yep I said it, I went there, that controversial word….spanking. (Again, just to make clear I’m saying kid…not baby!) I know every kid is different and some respond better to timeouts, but sometimes a kid needs to be spanked. If my parents wouldn’t have spanked me I would have been a complete hellion doing whatever I wanted all of the time. I was strong-willed and spanking didn’t take that out of me (I still am) but I did listen a hell of a lot better and follow the rules. Timeouts would have been welcomed and wouldn’t have done shit to change my bad behavior.

I should also make clear for all those haters out there that will tell me they ‘can’t believe I would agree with spanking and that it is abuse of a child’ and ‘you are a terrible, uneducated person if you think spanking is acceptable’. Spanking is a swat on the butt and it is discipline. (If a person is beating a child, hitting them with too much power, hitting them all over the body, punching them, leaving bruises, then that is abusing a child and that person deserves to be in jail where everything they did to that child will come back to them twofold.)

While some kids are more prone to being brats, it’s mostly the parents fault. The parents fault for not disciplining and letting their kids get away with bad, disrespectful behavior. Parents that don’t make their kids say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ or ‘excuse me’. The other day a mother bumped right into my grocery cart and didn’t say ‘excuse me’ or ‘oh sorry’ and then not five minutes later her kid actually pushed my cart out of his way. (I was rolling it down the aisle, I didn’t have it parked in front of something he needed. I was just in his way) Surprise, surprise… He didn’t say ‘excuse me’ or ‘oh sorry’ either. A direct result of seeing his mother be a rude A-hole and him thinking it’s acceptable behavior. Kids learn from their parents, good and bad.  For anyone that comments negatively on this part of the blog I’m guessing you have brat kids or will have brat kids and you will be completely disregarded.

Raising a kid is hard. There are so many situations that I will encounter and so many ways to respond to them and until I have actually had to deal with them I will never really know how I will respond.  I never ever want to discourage my daughter (any kid) or make her feel like she is anything less than the best. I always want her to believe and know she can accomplish and do anything she wants with her life. But… at what point do we need to stop telling kids (preteen and teenagers) how awesome they are at everything and actually be honest with them? (That everyone gets a trophy stuff is bullshit because in real life everyone doesn’t get a trophy and a score is actually kept) Shouldn’t we be raising and preparing our kids for life as independent, strong adults? When we see subpar work do we tell them to work harder because it wasn’t their best work and hurt their confidence, suggest they take another path or do you just keep telling them they are awesome? (AgainI haven’t encountered this situation yet so I have no idea how I will respond to it. Obviously at this point, I just want to believe Bradley will be perfect at everything and that I won’t have to deal with this problem. It really is a toughy though.  I always say honesty is the best policy.  I do know that when Bradley decides she want’s to play softball at 7 or 8 it will be in a league where the score is kept.)

I remember my career fair in seventh grade when I chose to be in entertainment and I had three different teachers tell me to choose a more realistic goal…  I remember it vividly because I was so hurt by it. Why would a teacher (that at the time I thought knew everything) ever tell a kid they can’t achieve their dreams and that they need to shoot lower because that dream isn’t realistic? Are you F-ing kidding me?

I don’t ever want a kid to feel like I did at that career fair or like they can’t do whatever they want, but if a kid (preteen or teenager) is failing or sucking at something shouldn’t it be suggested they need to work a hell of a lot harder or possibly do something else? (Side note I was in broadcasting and was on TV. So goals can be reached even if you are told they aren’t realistic. I didn’t like the pay much so I went a different direction, but I still achieved that goal.)

As for now I will enjoy Bradley being one and thinking I’m the best person in the world and worry about those dreaded teenage years and the tough situations we will encounter another day. We just take one day at a time …where we wake up, play and read books, she naps, I blog, clean or create something, she wakes up and we go for a walk and play some more, she naps, I do more cleaning and creating, she wakes up we make dinner, eat as a family, play some more, she takes a bath, then goes to bed and then my husband and I have adult time and do adult things. Pretty great life if you ask me.