Archive for the ‘
Have Baby, Will Travel ’ Category
Thursday, May 23rd, 2013
I know screamers. Baby screamers. Toddler screamers. Boss screamers. At any age, it’s not pretty. At least not to 99% of us. The exception is with parents and their offspring. Parents think their kids’ shrills are cute–but they also think the same of their child’s poop (and let them publicly defecate. In a restaurant). So they are no barometer.
We met a couple once who thought it was cute when their 2 -year old went into his high pitched screaming mode. He would do it over and over, almost like a crow squawking. They laughed at him and while maybe not encouraging the boy, it didn’t seem like they did much to dissuade him either. I don’t know what happened to the kid. I could speculate, but I won’t.
However, all my judging of kids and parents happened before I had my own. Now I still judge but in a different way (don’t we all?). I have a sweet, somewhat shy girl and a boy, who is, well, a screamer.
Emmett is 16 months and is rapidly discovering his voice. This means when he decides to test his vocals out, he nearly breaks glass. Thank god we don’t live in our Brooklyn apartment anymore. I would be horrified for my neighbors.
Here’s the kicker: when he first started doing it, I found it, well, um, ack– cute. I would laugh at him and he’d continue on. Then I realized I was becoming that oblivious, entitled parent. So I’ve started putting the kabash on it. “No Emmett,” I say, as he squawks. That word actually pisses him off and he escalates the shrieks. At this point, he’s only been doing it a few weeks and I’ve only been disciplining him for a few days. But so far, it seems to be backfiring.
So how do you stop a screamer? Especially one as little as him? Last night I was in a restaurant with him and Fia when he started. I threw his pacifier in, which at least allowed me to shove down my last few bites of food and get the hell out. But I don’t want to stop doing the things with him and Fia that we enjoy. I cringe to think of him on an airplane at this stage. 90% of the time he is such a fun easygoing little dude. And even the screaming for him is typically in a happy-hooting non-tear-ridden way.
Any tips? If I keep saying “No” is that going to make a difference? Or make it worse? He doesn’t understand timeout yet so that’s not the answer. I knew from the day he was born he was strong-willed and had things to say. I just don’t want screaming to be one of them.
Pic of toddler shouting via Shutterstock
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Have Baby, Will Travel, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips | Tags: baby screaming, baby talk, learning to talk, screaming, toddler screaming, toddlers, vocal chords
Wednesday, May 15th, 2013
You know how I feel about the whole EC–Elimination Communication movement. As in potty training your kid from the moment they are born and going to weekly support groups that revolve around talking sh-t. Um, no. Not happening.
So I had to dive into the discussion stemming from an article in Gothamist about publicly defecating. On purpose. We’re not talking about a homeless person down on their luck either.
The snapshot is of a little boy on one of those porta potties for kids. He is sitting on it outside, at, ya ready for this? A cafe. Specifically Pier 1 cafe that overlooks the Hudson River. Diners eat while he poops. I have never….
Now I know kids have little bladders and if you are in a park without a bathroom or something, having one of those porta potties can be handy. Especially because you can keep it in your car and your kid can use it. In Your Car. In Private. But at a restaurant? Where there is a bathroom?
The nanny was apparently with the kid. But honestly, this must fall on the parents. I can only assume they made her take this thing everywhere. I am also making the assumption that they are entitled and uptight. Because this is what the latest breed of entitled, uptight parents do. I can just hear it, “We can’t let anything interrupt little Johnny’s poo.”
I mean, come on you guys, tell me you agree on this. Tell me this is extreme parenting at the sh-ttiest level.
Please note: Parents changed the comments section on all the blogs and you can only post a comment via Facebook. Scroll down to the end of this post and you will see the Facebook icon. Thanks!
Pic of boy via Shutterstock
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Have Baby, Will Travel, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips, Must Read | Tags: elimination communication, kid porta potty, nanny, porta potties, toddler pooping, Upper West Side
Saturday, March 30th, 2013
I’ve put it out there that I have the most active mini toddler in the world. He has been since he came out giggling and mischievous 14 months ago. Thank god he’s also the happiest. But I am in a tough stage right now if I’m out and about with them both. Thus my no-guilt revelation this week in hiring help. Here’s a few pics of my little man on the move.
Down the slide in gymnastics:
In Griffith Park biking. We have a great contraption for the kids where they can sit in the front:
Watching the LA Marathon:
About to get scratched by Wayne Sanchez…
First horse ride in Griffith Park:
Categories: Fearless Feisty Mama, Have Baby, Will Travel, Milestone Monday, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips | Tags: active boy, biking, cat, guilt, guilt free, hyperactive, ibert bike seat, LA Marathon, marathon, mom guilt, toddler gymnastics, Wayne Sanchez
Thursday, February 21st, 2013
I always thought when you have kids, spontaneity goes out the window. In the beginning it kinda does. But during these early years–before real school gets in the way–I’m finding myself more spontaneous than during my pre-kid/marathon/climbing Kilimanjaro years. Take, for example, last week. We went to Hawaii. On a whim. No sh-t.
Phil got an unexpected window in his schedule last Friday–a whole, glorious week off between scripts. We looked at each other like, “Should we go for it?” I got online and began calling places to stay. With kids, we wanted a house. And I only wanted the Big Island. It doesn’t rain there. Yes, I was picky and determined. Not an easy combo.
Every booking agent laughed.
“This short of notice? Villas book out 6 months in advance.”
After multiple calls I was about to concede defeat. Then a woman named Anne returned my call.
“I have a house that no one has rented before. The owners weren’t planning on renting it this week, but they are game.”
Then Phil and I took it a step further. We called his parents–Rev and Bev (Rev is a retired Episcopalian priest). They live in Wisconsin. We asked them to come too. It’s a place they’ve always wanted to see. And of course they always want to see the grandkids. They are almost 80-years old. Rev’s back is bad. It’s a 12-hour flight. And though retired, they still have plenty of things on their calendar. Meals-On-Wheels, Tuesday Club, Ash Wednesday, you know the drill.
Phil’s mom, at first, said No Way. His dad said Yes Way. Then apparently Rev said to Bev, “You just aren’t spontaneous.” Well that’s all it took. Spontaneity might not be her thing but stubborn is. And she isn’t about to let Rev “be right.” She called us back. They were down. Woo hoo!
I called in a sitter and worked for 4 hours on securing a place, renting a car, and booking flights. Travel, planning, and cleaning are my forte. I should have been a cleaning lady-travel agent.
I began doing all the last-minute things you do before you go. Find someone to feed the cat. Throw in laundry. Put paper on hold. Pack. Pack more. Arrange for Cynthia Roelle to write some blog posts. (Thank you, Cindy!)
48-hours later we were on our way to 6 perfect days. We had a house with a pool and the beach in the distance.
This was last week. Now we are back and I’ve realized a few things:
- When you book last-minute, you have no time to anticipate. Therefore, when your vacation is over, your letdown isn’t as great. I’m not writing this from a pit of post-vacation depression. Just a little blue. But also totally rejuvenated.
- You become super-efficient in getting ready. And you accept that some things just have to be left undone.
- It’s hit or miss, but sometimes you can get deals. Flights weren’t bad, we used miles for some, and since the villa wasn’t going to rent out anyway, we got it for slightly less.
- You have no time to worry about the what-ifs. “What if Emmett gets a cold?”, “What if Fia won’t sleep?”, “What if my father-in-law snores so loud it keeps us all up?”
- And if you have it, throw money at the problem. Case in point:
I found a company over there that rents everything for kids. It is an amazing idea. For the week, I got two cribs with bumpers and blankets (taken to house and assembled before we arrived, taken apart when we left), a big tub of toys picked out specifically for Em and Fi, a highchair, beach toys, and a play yard. All for less than $300. I think that’s pretty good, considering.
Needless to say, we had an amazing time. We played in the pool every day…
We went to the beach a handful of times…
We saw whales. And waterfalls. Big and small.
We bought fresh fish from a local market and grilled. We watched Emmett walk…
…and Fia swim (yes, after I declared her swim lessons awash, she suddenly started to “get it.” And enjoy them. So we’re sticking with it for now). I sat outside one morning and read my book. It was heaven.
Now we are back and I feel refreshed and rested. I’m so glad we seized the moment. We did the same with our Death Valley adventure in December. So is it possible that kids make you more spontaneous? That they help you to live in the moment, embrace what’s present? I guess if you let them and let yourself. This was a big way to do it, but there are small, everyday ways, too:
Fia wants to take a different route to school so we can go past “the little blue car.” Okay, let’s do it…
We get stir-crazy, but it’s late in the day. We decide last-minute to run to the zoo. Even if we only have time to see the reptiles…
Stuff like this. Of course, if you have a husband who never knows when he can take vacation, you’re kinda forced to live impulsively on a larger scale. I am rarely bored.
I also really give Rev and Bev credit. It seems the older you are, the more stuck in your ways you become. They even took a red-eye home, landed, and went to church, then drove 3 hours home from Chicago. But I know it was worth every minute…
I feel like this way of living must keep me young. I also realize there is a difference in being flexible versus spontaneous. As parents we have to be flexible. You have plans but your kid gets sick. You cancel. But what if spontaneous could be attained by choice rather than necessity. It’s something to think about….
Consistency is good (especially with sleep/sleep training), but throwing it all to the wind isn’t a bad thing either. It also keeps my spirit free and adventurous. I can tell it rubs off on my tots, too. For me, parenthood–and even life is general–is all about finding that balance. I definitely think we did last week.
Until next time…Mahalo.
P.S. As a side note: I’d love to hear how spontaneous you are with your kids. Please share!
Categories: Cynthia's Guest Blog, Fearless Feisty Mama, Have Baby, Will Travel, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips, Must Read | Tags: Airplane, beach, Big Island, crib, hawaii, pool, sand, spontaneous, sun, swimming, toddler toys, travel, travel tips, vacation, villa, Whales
Wednesday, February 13th, 2013
Cynthia Roelle, mom to a 2-year-old daughter and award-winning photographer, shares her saga to lose the “baby weight” and reunite with her formerly slender self.
Before my husband and I had our daughter we used to travel a lot. Together we’ve been to 40 countries, give or take.
But as all parents discover, a baby changes the landscape. A simple walk in the park requires advanced planning. An overnight trip becomes a complex operation involving the repositioning of about 500 pounds of crap.
At some point you come to realize that “vacations” equal torture. There’s nothing relaxing or adventurous about them. A vacation with a little one is nothing more than an exercise of endurance. Consequently, we haven’t hazarded a real vacation in two-and-a-half years.
Then, last month my husband surprised me with a two-week trip to Ecuador. You’d think I would have been thrilled, right?
You’d be wrong. My first thought was “ah crap, there goes my diet.” I’m pretty sure that wasn’t the reaction my husband was hoping for.
Here’s the deal. I spent the last two-and-a-half years being 25 pounds overweight. Last fall I finally got sick of my fat ass and decided to get serious about losing weight.
Two-and-a-half months later I hit my goal weight. I lost the entire 25 pounds.
I still can’t believe it. I keep expecting to step on the scale only to find I’ve gained it all back. Like, in one day. Or on a 2-week vacation.
I’m happy to say that didn’t happen. After we returned from Ecuador I was afraid to step on the scale. I avoided it for days. When I finally mustered the courage I found I hadn’t gained a single pound. Truly, I was in shock. Apparently, vacations do not mean certain diet disaster.
Laziness, however, does. Since we returned home two weeks ago I’ve been more than a little lazy. I can’t remember the last time I worked out and, big fat surprise, I’ve actually gained a couple of pounds.
So, starting immediately, I’m back on the wagon. I’m going to lose the lazy weight and then, if all goes well, maybe a few more pounds. I have a pile of skinny girl pants I’m determined to fit into again (even if I never actually wear them). I’ll keep you posted on my progress.
Categories: Cynthia's Guest Blog, Have Baby, Will Travel, Mom Situations, Mom Tricks and Tips | Tags: baby, baby weight, clothes, diet, disaster, exercise, fat, feeling fat, lazy, losing weight, pounds, vacation, weight loss